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The Perfect Barrel, Part Deux

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#1 Whiskey Hammer

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Posted 23 April 2014 - 12:05 PM

Its finals this week. Which means my trouble shooting tests will have to wait till Friday or early next week. I know, I know... they were supposed to be done a while ago. But my girlfriend ate up more time than usual these past couple weeks. Deal with it.


Now school is reaping its revenge and you, dear paintball community, are left in the lurch for it. I'm sorry. 


But while were waiting, to whet your whistle and to help direct the project, I need a little help.


I've been expanding my machining capabilities for some other projects (.300BLK!!!!), and by happy coincidence I have everything I need to make one or two peice paintball barrels. 


We all know that punkworks has done test after test on paintball barrel performance. And from these test we have a set of best practices for use with existing barrels and a set of theortical ideals for future barrels. Lots of people have utilized the former, but to my knowledge, no manufacturer has done much with the latter. I dont know if its still an issue, but I recall Bryce lamenting the lack of small bore one peices, and other people pining for a long control bore two peice. On the surface this makes a lot of sense. Retooling a production line is hideously expensive, and if Im guessing thier manufacturing methodology corecttly, even experimenting with bore sizes would be a costly endeavor. I reckon most of the serious manufactures use custom drawn hydraulic tubing (which would require their supplier to retool for any experimentation with bore size) or they gun-drill thier bores. In which case they would need a highly specialized custom deep hole drill bit for every size they wanted to try. Either way your looking at a pretty serious investment for a performance gain that only a small portion of your market is educated enough to care about. Throw on top of that the reality of organizational inertia and (until recently) a down market, and you have a recipe for low innovation stagnation. 


In that sense, it's pretty understandable that nobody's made a Punkworks spec barrel for them to test. 


So what I'm interested in is this:

1. What barrels are you aware of that have incorporated Punkworks findings? I'm curious to see if the quality testing done here has influenced the industry yet.

2. What are the Punkworks ideal barrel specs for the below:

  • One Peice: length
  • Two Peice: control bore length
  • Two Peice: tip length
  • Two Peice: tip bore size
  • Both Barrels: porting vs no porting

I can do lengths up to say... 16 inches (I'll have to experiment to find the limit of my equipment) and I can control bore size down to the limit of my measuring ability, which is about +/- 1 mil. If anyone is willing to loan out a decent bore gauage and micrometer I can produce tighter tolerances.  


Most of this info is scattered across the 100+ Punkworks forum posts, but rather than data mine and risk missing something or worse, including outdated findings, I'd rather have a topical discussion about it. 


My FS test is my baby right now so between that and the experimentation necessary to dial in any machining process, it'll be a bit before I can get anything out for Punkworks to test. I'm shooting for sometime next month. It's between semsters so I'll have more free time than usual. 


And as a quick note, I'll include my thoughts on one peices vs two peices. I prefer one peice but advise two peices. The improvement in velocity consistency in a two peice doesnt seem to help accuracy much, but what it does do, is allow you to ride a higher velocity limit and still keep your gun in the safe zone. The advantages there should be plain. I dont want to undersell the advantages of efficiency. At the very least it makes your life more conveinent since you can go longer between fills and spend more time cleaning your gear and prepping for the next game. And in large woodsball fields and scenario games, the added on field time will very likely lead to more kills than the slightly higher velocity. If your just looking for brass tack performance, go for a two peice. But if you dont have a pit crew or you play long games, you'll probbaly be happier with a one peice. 

Edited by Whiskey Hammer, 23 April 2014 - 12:09 PM.

#2 cockerpunk


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Posted 23 April 2014 - 12:40 PM

most barrels that have been new or refreshed since about 2009 have incorporated our work, either explicitly, or implicitly

the empire sniper/cocker barrel kit

PE stock barrels

GnB kit from TAS

Lurkers barrels

simons new barrel kit (dont remember the name)


and most everyone is making small bore stuff these days, which is good to see.

been some work by lurker and others about taking what we know about "the problem of accuracy" and solve it in away not yet attempted, like the ultra ported and ribbed lurker we tested a while back. rntlee's work with saboted paintballs showed that even round balls can be made more accurate, but using the barrel to do that so far has not been terribly successful.

The ultimate truth in paintball is that the interaction between the gun and the player is far and away the largest factor in accuracy, consistency, and reliability.

And yes, Gordon is the sexiest manifestation of "to the front."

#3 XGC_Cheevo


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Posted 23 April 2014 - 04:02 PM

I don't know if flasc barrels have been used?  They have 9" control bores and may be nice to see versus like freak kits or the TechT kit.  If I remember correctly it was Bryce that stated a control bore around 8-9" inches would almost be ideal.


I also thought I remembered seeing porting as a major advantage vs no porting, which unfortunately Flasc has a disadvantage with porting unless you using barrel tips. :(  At least on the barrels I used from them.  Never got a chance to buy a one piece due to availability at the time.

#4 andrewthewookie


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Posted 23 April 2014 - 05:10 PM

simons new barrel kit (dont remember the name)



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#5 brycelarson


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Posted 24 April 2014 - 06:58 AM

Basic outline - long (8-12") control bore, moderate to heavily ported over-bored front for a total length of 12-16"


Like Gordon said - there were basically no underbored barrels on the market when our research started to show the benefit.  The Freak was the best option going.  Since then most manufacturers have released a small bore.  This has also coincided with the massive increase in pump play starting about 8 years ago.

#6 ball1



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Posted 19 June 2014 - 06:48 PM

Can you specify currently what is the most accurate barrel you have tested with the current small bore paint?

#7 ball1



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Posted 24 June 2014 - 03:14 PM

Please, don't everyone speak up at once.

#8 BurningPlaydoh



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Posted 24 June 2014 - 06:16 PM

Can you specify currently what is the most accurate barrel you have tested with the current small bore paint?

There isnt one because they have no affect on accuracy unless dirty or damaged.

#9 brycelarson


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 04:13 PM

Barrels don't really have any measurable effect on accuracy.


The real answer is a) a clean one and B) whatever you're comfortable shooting

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