Many propagates that good paint is the single most important element when playing paintball.
Paintballs are not aerodynamic heat seeking projectiles. It does not matter how expensive you gear is, you won’t shoot as Oliver Lang without the practice he has put behind his skill. He will shoot on target regardless what gear he uses.
The engine merely provides the energy for the ball as the barrel accelerates it into desired trajectory. The rest is up to you if intended to fly on target.
The ball might fly on spot or deviate of from trajectory, and this is the main focus of this article.
Different paint qualities
There are mainly two kind of paint bad paint and good paint. These are divided in three different subcategories; rental paint, practice paint and tournament paint.
- Bad rental paint, the fieldowner doesn’t need regular customer on his field. The paint flies where ever as they are stored for several years and are all dimpled.
- Good rental paint, the field owner wants regulars to return to his field as the paint flies sufficiently enough on target. Rentals doesn’t need ball brake to acknowledge a hit.
- Poor practice paint. The paint flies fairly on spot and does not necessarily mark the target sufficient enough.
- Good practice paint. It flies sufficiently on target and marks well
- Poor tournament paint. It is sensitive for environmental climate changes but flies initially straight and marks well.
Good tournament grade paint. It is less sensitive to environmental variations, flies on spot never dimples and marks a little bit too well.
Stress that downgrades paint
As mentioned whatever paint you decide to use there are still variables which can downgrade a superior paint.
It is generally considered that deformed or dimpled ball will catch wind and divert in unpredictable flight patterns. I have however found out some paint densities can compensate this and still fly on target.
The gelatine cover can be manufactured differently. They all react in various ways on different conditions:
- Rapid temperature changes will stress the shell to have different elasticities and dimples up.
- Duration of storage, the way the paint is stored
- In tempered storehouse in closed boxes for a short time, or constantly rotated over extended period of time.
- In open box but closed bag
- In closed pod
- In opened bag
- Fully exposed to elements
- Level of moisture.
- Too much will soften/harden the shell and enlarge/deform the ball.
- To dry the ball will shrink and dimple up.
- As mentioned the ball may vary in size depending on air moisture. This is why you need to parry this wit different bores during an extended game.
- And as last element significantly downgrading paintball paint is duration of exposure. As mentioned before when you need to bore much as you play. It also depends how logn time you store the paint. I had once 2 year old tournament level paint over performing fresh winter paint.
- Mic reasons, included oil, silicone pads or vacuum packed balls are also variables to take in calculation.
Different play styles
First strike players don’t care if the round brakes or not, they prefer opponent would call themselves out even from bounce shots at ineffective ranges.
Mag fed players prefer to have the ball brake outside the barrel rather than already in the magazine. Their gear are so rough on paint why they need hard shells which does not necessarily brake on impact.
Tournament players wants the ball to brake and tag thus their equipment is designed to as gently as possible push thru the most brittle paints there is without a brake in the engine. At athlete level the rules has always been stretched as much as possible, as in any sport, thus the need to overshoot skilful wipers.
Pump players can’t walk the trigger to aim wit the first ball and hit with the next, laning. This is why the ball consistency needs to be impeccable so the ball will fly where anticipated, deformations makes the ball to deviate in unpredictable ways.
Qualities I search in a ball:
- Ability to repeat same trajectory/flight pattern
- Ease of breaking outside the barrel
- Ability to mark the target
- Durability when stored extended period of times
Over all recommendations
If you agree with my definition for good paint, then you might want to read more about all paint I have used so far.
Best paint for the money has been Bejet as it still brakes after two years. Best expensive paint has been Zoomba as it flew on target despite being stored exposed to the elements for 2 hole years, it begun to have slight dimpling but was still perfect the first year.
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