What is the Cyclone Feed System? How does it work?
The Cyclone Feed System, which looks like about half of a soda can with a five arm "star" agitator inside it.
The cyclone Feed System works by directing a small portion of the excess blowback gas released by the CVX valve into a piston which forces the cyclone to turn one step. So each time you pull the trigger a paintball is force fed into the chamber and ready for firing again. No matter how fast you shoot, the cyclone loads the next ball just as fast. A common misconception about the Cyclone is that it sucks up extra gas, this is not true, and the Cyclone requires a small amount of gas that is normally wasted in the normal operation of a Tippmann blow back.
The Cyclone main body is connected to the marker by a single bolt on the left and two guide pins on the right side and connected to the CVX valve via a valve tap and banjo fitting. There is also a cylinder that houses both the air piston that works the Cyclone and a manual feed knob that you use to force the first paintball into the breach at the beginning of a game.
As paintballs fall into the main feed body, they fall into one of five "star slots" that effectively pre-load the next five shots and keeps them in stand-bye to be fired, just like a gumball machine. As the trigger is pulled, the cyclone advances the "star" one step, forcing the next paintball into the chamber.
The Cyclone acts as a force-feed system, not just an agitating hopper and was factory tested to 16bps and it can handle every bit of that and then some, though you will have to get the Tippmann Reactive Trigger Kit or E-Grip as well as a good flowing High Pressure Air (HPA) tank to realize that potential.
Does the Cyclone Feed Hopper make the gun a bigger target?
Now a lot of people have been yelling about the size of the cyclone system and how much larger it is that a "normal" hopper such as a Revolution or Evolution. But the facts are that the hopper has a lower profile and is tighter to the marker than any other marker on the market. The Hopper sits a full two inches lower on the A-5 than on a Model 98 with a Revolution on it. the hopper itself is smaller than a revy, only holding slightly more than 160 rounds, but the size difference is really telling. Go to http://members.tripod.com/The_kryptk...clone_myth.htm
to see the pictures for yourself.
Are there any problems known with the Cyclone Feed System?
Yes, some of the earlier Cyclone Feed Systems could malfunction when used with HPA or in markers that cycled a ton of paint on a consistent basis, so Tippmann released a Cyclone Upgrade that fixes these problems and will install it free of charge if you send the marker to them or they'll send you the parts if you feel secure enough to install them yourself. More information be be found here
Also the hopper for the A-5 is a little different looking and has an odd flat face, but it functions just as well as any other hopper. There were reports of Early A-5s having hopper that would break if they took a direct hit from a paintball. These hoppers will be replaced by Tippmann for free if you do break one, and Tippmann has replaced the old plastic hopper with a stronger hopper made with thicker plastic on all new A-5s leaving the factory.
Note: If you donít like the way A-5ís stock hopper looks, you are in luck. There are after-market hoppers available for replacement, check www.pbgear.com