Paintball2Xtremes was always one of my favorite paintball publications. It went down the tubes with recent bankruptcy debacle. John Amoeda was the driving force behind PB2X and instead of giving up after having it yanked out from under him he moved on to create Paintball X3 Magazine. Check it out.
Dec 31, 2008
If alcohol is included in your plans tonight DO NOT DRIVE. Hurt a member of my family while drunk and I'll go "judge, jury and executioner" on your sorry ass.
I'm just saying!
Dec 30, 2008
When I first started jotting a few notes down about running a paintball field here in this blog there were not many paintball blogs to be found. Since then more have appeared, most concentrating on hard news, tournament talk or how to info. I reviewed a few of them here and here and have found a few more.
For some heavy reading John Amoeda has started a series of reports concerning the present state of paintball. He gets an A+ because he not only points out the negatives like many doom and gloomers but also offers suggestions that will help the industry. With 23 years of paintball experience he's not a voice to be ignored.
Doc Nickels is another "old timer" who does super custom work. He has a forum rather than a blog and it's a great read if you are into technical stuff and machine work. His paintball comic strip "White Board" is pretty funny, too.
Paintball Myths Revealed: Accuracy, Trajectory, Distance is not exactly a blog either but it does have some good info with links to more. It doesn't get an A+ since it's mostly a sales tool but any assistance in dispelling paintball voodoo is welcomed.
Dec 29, 2008
I want to start a program here at the field patterned off the "Adopt a Road" program. Mine would be called "Adopt a Bunker". If anyone is interested in their own little section of paintball field where you can build and maintain your very own bunker let me know. I will have final say in the design so keep it neat and simple and fun. Maybe there could be a year end prize for the best. For inspiration I'm starting a blog series called Cool Bunkers.
Dec 28, 2008
Bronc is getting ready to do a high end hopper review (Where the heck did he get a JRNY?). Should be interesting.
I receive e-mails just about everyday from manufacturers and suppliers of paintball products. Many of them are from new companies who are looking to make a good impression and convince me to buy their products. Here is my response to a recent e-mail:
TO: Cannibalistic Paintball
RE: Your e-mail
What would ever posses you to name your company "Cannibalistic"? Please take me off your e-mail list.
Dec 27, 2008
Dec 26, 2008
Things are getting Holiday busy. Hope you don't mind a few re-runs!
Version three... from December 04, 2005
There is a word being whispered in the quiet corners of paintball's corporate world, behind closed, guarded doors, by small groups of fretful executives.
The word is, 'recession'!
Corporate paintball took a hit this year. And in typical fashion corporate paintball stood around wondering who farted while standing knee deep in their own poo.
I confess. I'm the reason for paintball's recession and here's why.
I've been driving away customers. Cash carrying, credit card not quite maxed out, check bouncing, who cares about the 25 dollar service charge, want to buy it now, customers.
I talk customers out of buying 21 inch sniper barrels. I refuse to make my shop look like a military arsenal. I don't stock or sell mil-sim gear. I refuse to ask anyone if they want a Stiffi (a barrel) or suggest they "Smoke the Pipe" (a barrel kit)!
When someone comes in wanting a cheap paintball gun I tell them I don't sell cheap stuff. When they ask for an electronic marker (hoping to see something they saw advertised for around a hundred bucks) I show them a $2000 (don't forget the air and feed system and plumbing) tournament gun and tell them any other electronic gun is a cheap, unreliable knock-off.
I don't stock delrin bolts for blow backs, dog leg stocks, CO2 regulators, paint named Bite, Tear or Rip, $79 jerseys, DVD's featuring four letter words I'VE never heard or packs that carry 1200 paintballs.
I don't sell anything from a company that calls itself Evil or from a company that claims its competition's paint has the runs! I don't stock paintball video games that have cheater modes or cheater boards for guns.
You might wonder how I stay in business. I admit to having a few questionable, high profit doodads and frou-frous on the display counter (frou-frous - that's a fancy Bulgarian word for knick knacks)! I'll never understand the fanatical attraction players have for barrels that apply a floating backspin to a paintball or why shaking a gravity feed hopper is such a revolting anachronism. And stocks? They seem a bit redundant (and heavy and awkward and expensive) considering the tank fits most shoulders like a stock. But, hey. I got bills to pay so I sell a few bent barrels and agitating hoppers and awkward fitting stocks.
But I can't seem to make myself sell a $100 mask when I know a $29 one works fine. Just as I can't sell a rec ball player a $299 high end marker that needs another $450 worth of Bulgarian knick knacks before it will work right. Especially when I know a complete $150 package is available that will shoot as straight and as fast and reliable as anything out there.
And for that I apologize to the industry...
with no apologies to my customers.
Dec 25, 2008
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were so afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:8-14
Merry Christmas from everyone here at T-Square Paintball.
Dec 24, 2008
If anyone is looking for me this evening I'll be up on the top of the Pro-shop. About this time every year some SOB crashes on to my roof and leaves skid marks in the paint (I have a metal roof). If that's not bad enough he tosses deer poo all over and it clutters up the gutters. And ya'll wonder why I'm so mean and grumpy!
Dec 23, 2008
I have some signs I purchased months ago. I had every intention of putting them up till I started to over think the situation. The signs read "No Shooting in This Area." They are meant to go on the fence in the parking lot with a few left over for the safe areas.
Have you noticed the Deer Crossing signs while traveling down some out of the way country road? Did they have bullet holes in them? I'd bet a dollar they did. I've never seen a No Shooting sign but I'd bet another dollar it would have holes in it, too. It's as if the signs are a dare. They seem to stir up the inner rebel in us and nearly demand that action be taken.
Right now there are only a few very old, very faded paint splotches on the parking lot fence. I can't help but imagine that putting the signs up would invite more paint. I should probably just leave things as they are.
Dec 22, 2008
Message on my answering machine this morning:
"Hello? Your machine says the field is not open today. I have 8 little boys that want to play. We will be there around 1:00. Call 962-xxxx if there are any questions! Thanks!
Merry Christmas, all. And Happy Holidays, too!
I'm kinda jealous of fields that have managed to find an old airplane to set out on their field. The WOW factor is pretty high. I've got a plan that will knock them all in the dirt. Don't tell my competition but NASA has plans to sell the three remaining Space Shuttles when they retire them in 2010. It's not much time but if I save my spare change I might have enough to buy one.
I was all set to add the logo and link of Arkansas college paintball teams to my blog and website. I figured it would be a positive thing for us both - publicity and recruiting for the college teams and something parents could see and connect with on my sites.
Now we have a former Team Captain of the Georgia Tech University accused of mishandling $40,000 of the team's fund. Accused. Not found guilty I should repeat.
Dec 21, 2008
Things are getting Holiday busy. I hope you don't mind a few posts from the past...
Freaks of nature... (from December 20, 2005)
After ranting a couple of posts back about how I only sell the best paintballs here at T-Square my daughter found this little gem in a factory sealed bag of 500 this past weekend.
To be fair, it was not found in our field paint but rather in a box of "backyard" paint that I sell the economy minded player.
It's actually two paintballs that were found stuck together. The bottom one is fairly intact and round while the top one is flattened and shaped into a perfect little hat! (The black marker features were added by one of our artistic field workers.)
Not necessarily something that made me mean and grumpy. In fact, I almost smiled when I saw it!
Dec 20, 2008
Dec 19, 2008
Dec 18, 2008
I'm so glad the NPPL closing shop and filing bankruptcy has little to do with paintball here at T-Square. I could hardly care less yet I'm drawn to the chit chat that is going on around the net on the more "serious" paintball blogs. It's like driving by a traffic wreck. You know you have to look. The whole thing is turning into a circus and now the finger pointing has started.
Consider, if you will, some of the companies the NPPL (or more accurately Pacific Paintball, LLC) owes money to: All-Ways Trucking, Inc., Arrowhead Mountain Springs Water, Chris Lasoya, Chrysler Financial, Fed-Ex, Franchise Tax Board, Reliable Tire Service, Verizon Wireless, Terminix, Internal Revenue Service, Noriega & Sons Lawn Service and 61 other companies and individuals.
Seventy two total creditors to the tune of 2.2 million dollars owed. Tell me who in the heck was manning the oars of this organization?
Obviously no one had the rudder.
Dec 17, 2008
Ok, so I'm sitting here waiting for the paintball scene on the TV show "Gary, Unmarried." I'm probably going to be disappointed. Masks off, no gun plugs, yada yada. But then, they say any publicity is good publicity. The field should be packed this weekend.
Why are guys so obsessed with the length of their barrel? Is it hard wired into our genes? Is it a Freudian thing? Do a few more inches really make that much difference? Is it worth it to pay for more length? Will it really enhance performance? I consider these to be important questions. A mans gotta know. Ya know!?
Dec 16, 2008
Of the many problems I run into in regards to ordering and shipment and delivery of merchandise for the Pro-shop I would have to pick shipments of the same order from multiple locations as the one that makes me most grumpy. That's when Item A,B and C are shipped from location 1, item D and E are shipped from location 2, and later on I get a back ordered item from location 325.
It's bad enough that I open the box and find the wrong items or have to deal with missing items with no explanation on the invoice (Has it been dropped from inventory? Is it back ordered and if so when can I expect delivery), having to pay shipping on each delivery from multiple shipping locations really yanks at my chain.
In the grand scheme of things it seems like a trivial inconvenience. But seriously, it's not my executive decision to have items scattered all over the countryside. I believe the responsible party needs to be paying for any cost above and beyond what it would cost to send the entire shipment from one spot.
Dec 15, 2008
Do you have something to say about Paintball Field or Pro-Shop operations or do you have something about paintball in general you would like to share? Guest writers are invited. Just e-mail your entry (along with a short Bio) for consideration. It doesn't have to be mean and grumpy.
Dec 14, 2008
Dec 13, 2008
The classic gun repair is the two minute cleaning. I'm handed a gun that a player thinks is a worthless piece of dog poo, squeegee out the goopy Wallyworld paint, oil it and hand it back working. The player looks at me like I just turned chicken nuggets into gold.
I've had this conversation many times; "No. Tanks you buy at Wallyworld do not come filled. That's why it doesn't work."
Another is what I call the "click and bump." That's where you dry fire to test it and when the hammer goes forward you hear a BUMP. (You should hear a CLICK as the hammer strikes the metal valve stem.) It takes about 30 seconds to fix this one and involves taking the gun apart and putting the pieces back in the proper order (hammer going in first instead of the bumper).
And then there's the, "It won't work."
"Change the battery."
I like the, "My ball only goes out about 4 feet and then drops," problem. Pull out the bolt, turn it right side up and it works like a champ. Fifteen seconds tops.
"You fixed it? How'd you do that?"
Magic... You're welcome!
Dec 12, 2008
I have one of those fields that still offer 100 round bags of paintballs. At many fields you're only choice is a bag of 500 since that's how they come from the manufacturer. Once a week here at T-Square one of us sits and uses a 100 round cup to dip into the 500 round bags and pour 100 paintballs into a baggie. Over and over and over again. It's a bit monotonous but it's a chance to sit back, maybe watch some TV, and just enjoy the day.
Every now and again some wise guy will take their bag and ask if there is really 100 paintballs in the bag. Normally my response is, "Well you just sit there and count them and if you're short I'll give you free paintballs." Usually it ends there.
This past weekend someone took me up on the counting.
"There's not 100 paintballs in that bag."
"Well you just sit there and count them and if you're short I'll give you free paintballs."
And danged if he didn't. Right there in front of me.
When he got to 100 and still had around 8 balls left in the bag he went off and disappeared into the crowd.
Seems like I have been giving away free paint all along. Eight balls at a time!
Dec 11, 2008
It's that time of year. UPS is at my door almost everyday bringing new things to put on the shelf to await the Christmas rush. Last night a fire broke out at the main UPS hub here in Little Rock. The fire was not that big but it set off the sprinkler system. I apologize in advance if under your tree you find a rather damp paintball gift. If you are the type that likes to crawl under the tree and shake their gifts hoping to guess what it is don't be surprised to hear one of them slosh! Merry perfect timing Christmas!!
Dec 10, 2008
Anyone want to buy the NPPL? I hear a cool million will do it. Better snatch it up before Smart Parts gets it.
Rumor has it Wallyworld is doing away with paintball products. I wonder if this is good for me or better for Sport Boss and Duck Mountain?
Dec 9, 2008
Dec 8, 2008
Remember, this is all personal opinion based on speculation and MtDew induced consciousness, often tempered with tongue in cheek.
Bea (Youngs) Paxson, the self proclaimed "Voice of Paintball" has a "pretty" blog/web page. I don't know about voice. She certainly is the current "face" of paintball. Like a number of young ladies before her - Keely Watson, Bonnie "Bon Bon" Demenge - she has managed to carve out a rather nice niche for herself among the boys. Updates are scarce. I'm sure she would blame her busy, around the world schedule. I would have to go with an A-. Oh, and if you are not sure how to pronounce her first name? The bee in her logo should give you a clue.
Paintball Reserve - News, rumors and propaganda from the pro world. Not my cup of power drink but if you are into that kind of thing it's a good read. Lots of player insider stuff and pro-tourney coverage. For amount of content and updates it is certainly an A+
Paintball Craze - Your A to Z in Anything Not even close. A few press releases stuck between a bunch of advertising from a group in South Africa. A--
Dec 7, 2008
Can anyone honestly tell me lugging something like this around (easily over eight pounds) for a half dozen hours during a scenario game makes you anymore effective than someone with a bare bones Custom 98 or Piranha?
Dec 6, 2008
I feel bad having to tell a guy he can't use his own gun because it's missing the safety. I want to tell him to go use the gun but just keep his bloody finger off the trigger and be careful. But I can't.
It's the same with the old Spyder Special Edition. For some unknown reason Kingman decided to ship it without a trigger guard. Such a simple necessity. You gotta have one.
When an odd color fill shows up at my Field Paint Only field and I find the culprit I really don't want to tell him he has to dump it out. But I do.
And when someone has already fired 40 rounds trying to chrono his gun I still make him shoot again even though he's only 1 foot per second over the limit.
I'm not really mean and grumpy. I have a tough couple of bosses.
Dec 5, 2008
Awhile back I was showcasing items here from VintageRex.com. I'd like to bring that back with a look at the Air Gun Design 6-Pack. Back "in the day" constant air (anything larger than a 12 gram cartridge) was not allowed in tournaments because it changed the game too much. When players found out the 6-Pack was allowed Air Gun Design could not build them fast enough.
The 6-Pack worked so well, allowing a player to switch out an empty with a full cartridge with just the pull of a lever, that the tournament promoters threw up their hands and said, "Heck, we might as well allow constant air!"
Air Gun Design was able to produce and sell 2000 6-Packs before it's success led to its demise.
Dec 4, 2008
Tomorrow John Amodea is going to offer his ideas on “What Have We Done To Our Game.” I don't mean to steal Mr Amodea's thunder but there are a few things that come to my mind.
Mil-sim proves we don't even learn from our mistakes.
Field owners are trying to make nickels and dimes while the industry nickels and dimes us to death. I wrote about it here and here. The industry has sucked the bottom clean. From the customer to the retailer/field owner to the wholesaler to the manufacturer to the corporations to the stock holders. Everything flows upward. The juice is suppose to flow down.
When R&D and manufacturing went from the backyard garage to industrial factories quality control went out the door. More here and here.
The industry screwed Pro-shops by taking away our after market products.
We took the GAME and turned it into something ugly and unrecognizable. We ignore the Game and feed the Monster (Competition).
We shoot ourselves in the foot with our own stupidity. Here and here and here and here and here and on and on and on and I know you are not going to read all of this.
So how about Paintball Assassin, Murder Inc., Punisher Paintball, Violent Products, Bad Habitz, Vendetta Paintball, Maddman Products, Hater Paintball, Deadly Wind, Full Clip???
Hemorrhage paint, Killer grips, PBNation fighting with TechPB, Smart Parts devouring the competition...
I have more. Most of the staff and regulars here at T-Square know not to get me started.
Paintball is still a relatively young sport so it's no surprise to find bullys and school yard grandstanding and name calling and finger pointing.
Mr Amodea says he has solutions to our problems.
There are questions from pro-shop customers, and then there are questions.
"What's your cheapest gun?"
This one causes me to stutter every time, as I force back an appalled, "I DON'T SELL CHEAP GUNS." Counting to ten really does help. Once I calm down and correct the customer with, "Well, my least expensive gun is..." I'm good to go.
Another question; "Which one is the best gun?" often ends an hour latter with half a dozen markers and twice that number of accessories piled on the counter - the result of me telling the customer, "The best gun is the one that 'fits' you best."
I'm a terrible barrel salesman. When I'm asked, "Will a better barrel make my gun more accurate?" I launch into barrel physics and barrel voodoo and usually end up talking the customer out of a sale.
And then there's, "What's wrong with this gun?"
"Operator error," I have found, is not the most customer friendly response.
Dec 3, 2008
Dec 2, 2008
I really want to throw my 2 cents in on the NPPL situation. I have lots of ideas about "will they come back" or whether the PSP will become the Big Dog (But maybe under a different name?). What will Amodea do now? And I have many suggestions for what hole Smart Parts can throw their cash into if the NXL gets canned.
But all of that is so far removed from my paintball world that I hardly have time to give it all a second thought. I hate to burst anyone's bubble, some of my best friends are tournament players, but the life and death of the tournament world has no effect on the number of birthday parties or church groups that come to play at T-Square.
I like my field and customers. It's pure paintball. Free of politics. Nobody really keeping score and no one having their world turned upside down due to a paradigm shift or cash flow problem or finger pointing.
I have some turtle shells setting on a window sill near the front door of the pro-shop. I find them on the ground, especial along the bank of the creek, when I walk the playing fields. I don't dwell much on the life and death struggle that happened to produce the shell. Maybe a hawk or a raccoon found the insides of the shell to his liking. Eat or be eaten is pretty much how it works out in the wild. Maybe the turtle just died of old age. I don't think turtles shed their shell.
A Dad spotted the shells awhile back. He got a bit up in my shop manager's face about them. Seems he was pretty sure we were the cause of the turtle's demise. My daughter was so taken aback by the man's attitude that she was unable to clearly explain the shell's circumstances. He was set on his idea that it was tacky of us to display our trophy kills to the young players. I wonder what he would say to the collection of hawk and owl and goose feathers I have in my office?
Dealing day to day with different people can be an adventure. Maybe it was the tiny "For Rent" sign that bothered him. You can pick your friends but you can't always pick who is going to come walking through the door of your business. They say our nation's diversity is what makes us strong. I, on the other hand, find myself getting a bit tired and a little weary of the far left and far right. Patience, I suppose, is the key.
Dec 1, 2008
R.I.P. NPPL - Bankrupt