So finally a good post about some of the convergence of two great aspects of my life. Geekiness and Paintball.
While getting ready for “Aliens in the Rockies”:http://www.mpaintball.com/aliens/index.html I realized I needed to get some new “stuff”. Yes, just like computers there are always new toys that you *need* to be better, and one of the ones I wanted is called the “Apex Barrel, By BT Designs”:http://www.btpaintball.com/f_b_apex.php .
So, what’s geeky about this barrel? Why physics of course. A couple of years ago “Tippmann Pneumantics”:http://www.tippmann.com came out with their now well know flatline barrel, which had a very oddly curved shape to it. This barrel provided a certain backspin on the ball which caused it to _float_ an extra 30-50 feet farther than a normal barrel could shoot. In paintball, that’s a serious advantage.
The problems with the flatline barrel can be summed up in the following:
* Only works on a specific tippmann model
* Always on
* Difficult to change barrels
* Single level of float
Well, Ben Tippman last year broke out and with his own company, created the apex barrel, which solves these problems. The barrel itself looks like a standard, medium sized barrel. But it has a strange, almost silencer looking attachment at the end. This attachment is their secret. It has an adjustable tongue and channel system that can provide variable backspin on a ball. It also allows you to *rotate* the attachment to provide directional spin.
The varying levels let you choose from no range adjustment (straight on normal barrel), to a level a good 50% stronger than the flatline, letting you shoot as far as 330ft !
With the rotation, I was demonstrating to a neighbor, at specific ranges, I can now shoot behind hiding *behind* objects (rocks, trees, etc). How’s that for a force advantage?
Yes, geeky physics have now given me a fun advantage in paintball. I can make that non-aerodynamic paintball curve or float at my whim to my target.
Oh, and once again, if anybody wants to play this weekend, I have extra equipment you can borrow 🙂