Well here is my input on the Shake with Carbon Fiber Tip and Barrel Cover. I won my Shadow barrel through Facebook. Make sure to follow them to keep up with news and new promotions!
It took about 3-4 weeks to arrive. Opening the envelope, the barrel was wrapped in the Shadow barrel wrap. Opening the wrap, I was surprised to see the Shake with CF tip!
It is a simple case made to only fit one barrel. The outside is velvety and the inside is sort of like ballistic nylon. The barrel slides in through the 2 elastic loops. No new cutting edge technology, but it is a nice addition to the barrel.
The Shake is a two-piece barrel. The anodizing is a fine dust finish, with the Shadow branding in polished black. The barrel, as a whole, is incredible light. It comes in 3 bore sizes, 0.685", 0.687", and 0.689".
The first thing I noticed on the front was that it was made of carbon fiber. The outside finish is fine and glossy. The carbon fiber is thin but doesn't feel fragile or going to break. The back of the front is aluminum pressed over the fiber and male threaded, screwing into the back. I'm not a huge fan of this design. I would rather my back screw into the front instead to have a longer control bore. Since it is a carbon fiber barrel, the internal finish isn't mirror-like but it is better than any carbon fiber barrel I've gotten my hands on.
This is where the magic takes place. The back has a nice size control bore. I received a 0.685" back which is a happy medium for paint in Ohio, perhaps a little overbored. The finish on the inside is mirror-like and superb. The step from the back to the front is hardly noticeable as there is no gap looking from both sizes, although you can see the change in materials.
On the field:
Since receiving the barrel, I have put almost 2 cases of paint through it. Using a Bob Long MVP with the Shake over my stock 0.685 barrel, I didn't notice a ton of improvement with the way I perceived my shots to be accuracy wise and any changes in velocity or consistency over the chronograph. I was shooting Splatterpark's Wrek Paint which was bored super small (>0.680") Both barrels have a very fine finish; as long as they are kept clean, both will put ball on ball all day. Once a ball broke though, the CF seemed to hold on the paint and it was harder to shoot through, but that was a rare occurance. Maybe 1 out of 1500 shots. I also felt the porting on the barrel made it slightly louder than the BL barrel. Where it lacks in those departments, it makes up weight. The Shake is one of the lightest barrels I've ever picked up. Snapping up and out is a breeze. The tip is also ridiculously strong. I mean Heracles strong. I dove hard in the woods sliding up into a tree bunker several times. Even after core sampling a little or banging off of trees, roots, and rocks, the Shake held up fine. No cracking, fraying, or anything else. After ~2300 pump strokes through one day, the anodizing on one section of barrel where the pump handle rubbed started to rub off and looks slightly polished now.
Second time, I ran about 8 pods and 2 hoppers through my Spec-R with it. No breaks all day, whereas I was blowing up paint with my S6.5 when I underbored. It was spot on one balling, and when a string needed to be sent, the Shadow delivered.
Shadow makes a great product and are coming out super strong. I love the product, but there would be a few things I would change.
- Bore Sizes - to cater to the US market, I feel at least one size smaller would greatly help sales. Maybe a 0.681" to fit in with the current offerings could do that.
- Increasing the control bore more - If the back screwed into the front, Shadow could increase the size of the control. I do see the the issue though with CF fronts though and not having a solid joint between the back and front.
I've used Freak kits, Stiffi barrels, PE Shaft 3's and 4's, DP's REV-I kit, Vanguard's Un1tech, CCM's barrels, UL's and multiple stock barrels (BL, Axe, etc). I wouldn't mind picking up a new Shake down the road with a smaller bore size and aluminum and I have no problem recommending Shadow to my teammates, friends, and peers.
I'll post some pictures tonight and some weight comparisons if I can get around to it.
Shadow and my S6.5:
Shadow and my DP G3: