Returning to the game after 15 years and looking for suggestions for a new gun
For anyone reading this for the first time and not planning on reading the rest of the thread, I've already resolved the question and bought an Etek 4. Thanks again to all that helped me settle on this gun.
Yesterday I played paintball for the first time in 15 years (at least... might be a couple more than that even) and I've got the bug again to try and stick with it for a while at least. The issue is that my 68-Carbine promptly committed suicide (busted all 3 valve o-rings on the same shot) after about 3 hours of play. I know that I can get the o-rings custom made or I can order a kit, but honestly, I'm thinking that the other issue with this gun, the fact that it was always meant to be an interim gun while I saved for an autococker or automag and its so old that even ebay hardly has any parts to upgrade it with, is whats pushing me toward something newer. I don't really like the way Tippmann have gone with their gun designs in recent years, so I'm looking for some good alternatives. The primary criteria I'm looking to fulfill are:
1: Cost no higher than $300 including an aftermarket barrel if the stock barrel is not already highly accurate.
2: Plenty of aftermarket upgrades available and new enough that they will still be available for awhile.
3: Quality / durable construction because I'm not exactly gentle with my equipment, though I don't just roll it around in the mud either.
4: Not super tempermental. I'm not sure if this is an issue, but when I played all those years ago, the "good" guns were all kooky and tempermental, so I'm hoping to find one that just works, so to speak.
Any help with this is greatly appreciated since most of what I knew from all those years ago doesn't seem to apply anymore. Most of the big names from back then have vaporized, or are at least not very popular anymore, and most of what is out there now uses technology that was very touchy and troublesome when it first came out.
Last edited by AviatorMan : 12-09-2012 at 03:41 AM.
2: Plenty of aftermarket upgrades available and new enough that they will still be available for awhile.
Any specifics in this category that you're looking for?
For example, many new guns such as the already mentioned Mini have a very proprietary bottom line ASA (in this case it also contains the primary regulator). If you're into alternative tank setups (drops, cradles, t-stocks, offsets, forward mounts, endo's, down angles, etc) a gun like that will cause you a lot of frustration.
Of course if you're fine with a fixed non-modifiable bottom line setup, then it's a non-issue.
First off, I guess I should mention that there is about a 5% chance that I will buy a used gun. I've had a couple bad experiences with that in the past and I'm not really interested in testing the waters of the used market again. So the $300 cap really applies to new guns only. As for category of guns I'm looking for, definitely not military replica, but beyond that I think the best way to land on specifics is to describe my play style. I like to snipe, so accuracy is very important, but I also like to be able to lay down lots of paint for suppression so reliable fast firing is important. I also want something light, maneuverable, and well balanced so I can run and gun if need be. I guess a jack-of-all-trades is the best description.
I came very close to getting an SP1 off Ansgear. You can get them new for $125 which is a steal. Its not milsim but you can do lots of stuff or upgrades with that marker if you want. Its really a $175 marker but they found some in surplus and are looking to move them. Great woodsball gun.
Also you have plenty of extra cash for a hopper, barrel, double trigger if you want, ect.
If you want a higher end gun off the bat I would go with the mini. Probably not as much that would be worth upgrading but a little more high end gun to start with.
I bought a mini a few years ago when they first came out and it was very temperamental. It had major blow back issues which rendered the gun and hopper useless until i cleaned both. Then it would just blow more paint up into the stack popping more balls. Miserable experience. Even after a few tweaks and upgrade parts. However this was a gen 1 mini and Invert may have fixed this issue by now. Either way I probably will never buy another mini. Just my .02
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If u really want to snipe there is the mr5 with first strike.
I guess I should say that my definition of paintball sniping is being able to hit within a 5x5 box at 100 feet. 15 years ago, that was about as accurate as you could possibly get. I know technology has improved on that, but I'm not wanting to go so far in that direction that I'm looking at $40 for 100 rounds and a special conversion just to snipe. As for the Enemy and SP1, they seem like they are pretty close to entry level and I'd really like to step up a level or two in gun quality this time around rather than buying a new stopgap marker to replace the old stopgap marker.
Originally Posted by FreeEnterprise
You can't go wrong with an A-5... And you can usually buy them on sale for around $230 leaving enough left over for a Apex barrel... Or flatline.
Mine has never let me down.
I had a really thorough look at the new Tippmann products (both the 98 and the A-5) and really don't think thats the way I'm going to go. First they seem to be focusing more and more on mil-sim, which I don't like for various reasons, and also because they have moved to the two half design which just seems like its asking for trouble. I know they are the new rental mainstay, which is indicative of Tippmann durability, but something about the departure from the single-piece machined body is a leap too far for me. I've also had some time to talk to a few field managers around town and they have mentioned that some of the internal changes to the mechanisms of the guns have been problematic (the switch from an tension spring sear to a compression spring sear being the most notable). That all being said, I'm not against the idea of getting another Tippmann, but I do think that they have moved in a different direction from what I want.
Originally Posted by fox5100
I would look at a mini. I have owned 3 and they worked great.
A lot of people have mentioned the Empire Mini's and I'm going to have a chance to demo one tomorrow, but from what I've seen, they start above my price cap and only get more expensive. I'm not sure if there are any available on the used market, but even if there are, I'd need to know the history of every scratch and probably want a lifetime warranty before I'd consider buying a used gun.
Originally Posted by natepb96
The Proto Rail and a Custom Products one piece 14 inch 689 30 dollar barrel sets you back almost exactly 300 dollars.
This is one of the first guns that was suggested to me by a local dealer. I think I'm also going to get a chance to demo one tomorrow and I'm hoping that its going to be pretty good, but he mentioned that they can be temperamental due to the position of the eyes and the design of the system. I'm not sure if that something I'm really wanting to deal with. I remember back when the electropneumatic guns were first coming out people would sometimes get only a few shots off before shredding a ball and then having to spend 30 mins trying to get the thing clean so it would work again. I'm guessing that those issues have been resolved to a great degree, but I think I'd still wonder what kind of trouble I am getting into when the person trying to sell me the gun is warning me that it can be temperamental.
This same person also suggested I take a look at the new autocockers now that the price has come down into the low to mid range marker region. I will say that in the past they were always one of my wish-list guns, but I also know that they can be very problematic due to the complexity of the design. He did explain that its been refined and improved quite a bit now so that a lucky ball won't blow up your three-way, but they are still guns that need a lot of tweaking and adjusting to get them working the way you want them to work. It almost seems like I may have to give up on my #4 buying point if I'm wanting to move up from the entry-level products towards something with a little more oomph since virtually every gun that has been offered as an option that fits my price range has some sort of drawback whether its complexity or its need to be babied to keep it from shutting down.
I like mid level guns always have if they break oh well
try an ion they are cheap, solid guns
If I had the money to take an "oh well" stance towards a broken gun, I'd just buy a better gun . I'm going to want this one to last me at least 5 years of monthly or bi-monthly play. It may not have to last that long, as I might upgrade again if I can justify the expense due to more play than I expected, but I don't want to be forced into buying another gun because this one breaks, or needs too much maintenance to be worthwhile.
One question that's come up because of a total lack of experience with the newer guns is whether or not the problems that Sinister1983 had with his Mini are common to all electropneumatic guns, common to all Mini's, or just bad luck on his part?
If you don't mind going a small amount over your limit you could get the Planet Eclipse Etha.
The problem is that my upper limit is really about $200 and I'm dipping into some other sources to get the extra $100 because past experience has shown me that the extra few dollars at the low end of the market can really make a big difference. The more over that limit that I try to push this, the less I can justify the purchase when considering that I'm not a competitive player. If push really comes to shove and I have an opportunity to buy an ok gun for $250 but the $350 gun is fantastic, I'll think about the extra money, but that gun would have to be highly accurate out of the box and not need any upgrades for a while. Plus, I'm probably going to be switching over to compressed air, so I'll need to buy a new tank for ~$50 and I've also been told that if I want to move into electropneumatic guns at all, I really have to think about getting an electric hopper, which looks like its going to add another $30-$80 to the total cost of the gun, so the end result seems like its going to be a balancing act between the total cost of the setup and how much I can justify spending based on my level and quantity of play.
I don't think a pump gun will work for me, and I'm almost 100% sure that a $150 tank and a $150 hopper are out of my price range. Any suggestions for similar versions that cap out at no more than half of that?
If you're reticent to buy used gear, you're not going to get a 4500 PSI tank...those are all more than $100 when new. A large 3000 PSI tank should only run you $50 or so...but then depending on what gun you get, you may shoot through your tank after only a game or two.
I am not sure of a decent loader in the $50 range.
Tim2Thousand4 is shady, his word doesn't mean anything. If you had a good experience with him, my opinion is that you got lucky.
Gog envy is an amazing gun for 200$. Electric board capable of 11bps and many modes. Great regulator. Bolt out back, easy maintenance design, double trigger, accurate stock barrel, and it comes in a hard case. It's made by a company called GOG. They also make the g1, extcy, and enmey. All great guns with different features. I highly suggest you check them out.