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Tips and Tactics for Stock Class Paintball
April 22, 2002

Tips and Tactics for Stock Class Paintball


With the growing popularity of stock class, I decided to include this in my site. I learned most of these tricks playing way back in 1984, because "Stock" was pretty much all we had. Newer players never had the chance to play this way, many "cut their teeth" on field rental semis. It's surprising how many players never even played with a pump. In my day you gradually worked up. A "stock" marker first, then a pump and then a semi. Not so anymore.

So I decided to pass on a few things, to give you an advantage over your peers. (At least the ones who haven't read this article.)

RECOMMENDED STOCK CLASS PAINTMARKERS

To tell you the truth, there are no bad stock class markers. All the manufacturers have gone out of their way to develop and manufacture the best marker they can. Selection is only limited by your budget.

NECESSARY MODS FOR SHERIDAN STOCK CLASS PAINTMARKERS

Okay, you own a PGP or a P68 SC, I'm going to tell you how to get all you can out of these great little paintmarkers.

  1. User Installable Devices.

    • You'll need a better twelve gram plug. Fourteen turns with a standard Sheridan plug doesn't cut it. Pick up a Fasst Change, and make your life easier.

    • Also, to make reloading quicker, get a tube extender. Some tube extenders also allow you keep a tube in the paintmarker for an extra 10 rounds.

    • Another necessary mod is a rear plug velocity adjuster.

    • All three (Fasst Change, tube extender and velocity adjuster) are available form TASO, and are VERY affordable.

  2. Machinist work.

    • Take the hammer and bring it to a machinist, and have him turn it down in the centre to lighten it. For the reasons why, keep reading (it's 3).

  3. Custom Shop Ideas.

    • Performance tuning is a good idea, you want to squeeze all the shots you can out of a twelve gram. At first I was a little sceptical about the performance difference, but the difference is really quite phenomenal. All these mods can be done (and very well, I might add) by Palmer's Pursuit Shop. They've been working on Sheridan based paintmarkers for over 10 years.

IMPROVED CO2 EFFICIENCY

  1. Get, or have made, a lighter hammer. You can get lighter hammers for Nelson based paintmarkers. Sheridan based paintmarkers must have the hammer lightened by a competent machinist. Don't try doing it yourself. (It's not that it's dangerous, the main reason is because the hammers are made of tempered steel. If you do it yourself, you're going to be filing until the end of time.) Other non-Nelson/non-Sheridan hammer systems may have to be machined. Most people, who know, will tell you that the Nightmare (by Brass Eagle) is a "gas pig". The hammer is too heavy. Lighten the hammer and you'll have a very gas efficient paintmarker.

  2. What's the big deal about lightened hammers?

    • First the dynamics behind it.

      • When the paintmarker is fired, the hammer (under spring power) strikes the valve and opens it, allowing a measured amount of CO2 out and kicking the ball out of your paintmarker.

      • Well, it doesn't stop moving. The spring in the valve, closes the valve (sealing it up) and it pushes the hammer away. The hammer spring forces the hammer back against the valve.

      • This is called "rebound".

      • If the hammer is too heavy (as most hammers are) the weight allows the hammer to strike the valve harder when it rebounds (kinetic energy and all that). Some paintmarkers, because of heavy hammer rebounding, will use CO2 for another half of a shot. So for every two shots, you're loosing one shot of CO2, and that extra "rebounding CO2" does nothing but go out your barrel (your ball is gone by the time the hammer rebounds).

      • A light hammer won't rebound hard enough to reopen the valve. This is due to the fact that the lighter something is, the less kinetic energy it has, compared to something heavier travelling at the same speed.

      • When having your hammer turned down, don't take off too much metal and ruin the hammer. (Do it with an EXTRA hammer. That way, if the hammer is rendered unusable, you still have a hammer for your paintmarker, and you can still play.)
I've suggested lightened hammers to Glenn Palmer, via e-mail on the InterNet. I don't know if they're considering it. If enough people badger him about it, maybe he'll start making them. Pester Carter Machine, too. Squeaky wheel gets the oil, you know.

SHOULDER STOCKS

Officially, shoulder stocks are allowed in stock class rules, according to the Stockgun Player's Association (SGPA). (Well, actually, there just isn't a rule against them.) They are an excellent way to help you improve your accuracy. A shoulder stock helps stabilize the paintmarker when you're firing.

Durty Dan Sez:
I strongly recommend a stock for any stockgun that doesn't readily fit in a holster.

PUMPING -- WHILE USING YOUR SHOULDER STOCK

If you have a Nelson based stockgun chances are, you'll have to rock it forward (barrel down) to drop a ball into the chamber. On Sheridans, you have to rock them back (barrel up) to drop a ball. (If you don't have to tilt your paintmarker to load, you don't have a stock class paintmarker -- cheater.)

Be that as it may. When you have the paintmarker to your shoulder it is sometimes awkward to tilt the paintmarker. Here's a trick, as you pump, drop (or raise) your shoulder, instead of tilting the paintmarker. (On Sheridan paintmarkers, drop your shoulder slightly. On Nelsons, raise your shoulder.) You'd be surprised how well it works. Also, it's easier to keep your sights on your target.

PUMPING WHEN YOU'RE LYING ON YOUR STOMACH

It's kind of hard to "play the trombone" when you're on your stomach. Instead of moving the pump and holding the paintmarker still, do it the other way around. Your weight is usually on the arm supporting the pump, it's easier to shift your weight off of your shooting arm and shove the paintmarker forward.

QUICK RELOADS AND 12 GRAM CHANGES

Have an area on your harness, or paintmarker, where you can have immediate, non-fumbling access the desired tube or twelve gram. You should have enough paint and 12 grams in this area to last you for most, if not all, of one game. When you're just about ready to reload, or change, pull out the desire tube or twelve gram. Don't wait until you actually need it. Don't empty your paintmarker, or use the last shot out of the twelve gram before grabbing a tube or 12 gram. Also, and this is VERY important: NEVER DUMP A SPENT TWELVE GRAM UNTIL YOU HAVE A FULL ONE IN YOUR HAND. If you have no air, and you're fumbling around for a 12 gram, you're going to be in big trouble if someone rushes you.

Gravity is your friend. As my buddy Hugh says, "Gravity: It's not just a rule, it's a LAW." Tip your paintmarker to drop a spent twelve gram and he other way to insert a twelve gram. The same is true for reloading.

Also, if you find yourself in the unfortunate situation where you have to reload BOTH air and paint, air takes the priority. The paint is no good without air and you can always "fake someone out" by just shooting air.

THE BEST WAY OF TAKING ADVANTAGE OF YOUR OPPONENT

Move when your opponent fires. It's a stockgun after all. You and your opponent have to cock for every shot, take advantage of that. When your opponent is taking time to reload/change, use the time to move on him. Also count his shots. If you can tease him into shooting around 15 shots, you can take more chances moving on him. The reason for this is that after 15 or more shots, velocity is greatly reduced (if he doesn't change 12 grams). Chances are, unless it hits your paintmarker or mask, the ball is going to bounce when it hits you.

Watch for "wiggling" elbows; this flapping motion of the arms is usually an indication that your opponent is frigging with something.

MAKING EVERY SHOT COUNT

In Stock Class, you have to make every shot count. The reason for this is simple, you have limited paint and limited air, immediately available in your marker, to work with. Due to this fact, you have to spend a lot of time on the shooting range. Know where you have to put your sights when you've gone through about half of your CO2. Know how many good shots you can get out of a twelve gram. (Velocities at or lower 230 fps usually bounce on targets over 25 feet away. Unless you're playing indoors, where most of your opponents are 25 feet away, or less.) If you can hit a 9 inch pie plate, at 100 feet, 9 out of ten times, it'll be easy to hit an opponent's paintmarker or other hard area, when you're low on CO2. There are very few hard spots on the human body (fewer on some than others). If you are accurate enough, it won't matter if you're on the last shot your twelve gram will give you.

TEAMWORK IS ESSENTIAL IN STOCK CLASS

It is VERY essential in Stock Class. Not only is it good to have an extra pair of eyes and ears, but it gives you more firepower. You'll really need someone to cover you, when your reloading or changing, it's just good sense.

LUCK

Sure, in Stock Class, skill is essential for the game. You have to be a good shot and a quick thinker. You can also take more chances. Mainly because your opponent can't sends tons of paint your way when you move. For the same reason, pointmen (players out front) can be a little more relaxed. They don't have to anticipate multiple impacts from an opponent who manages to get the drop on them. Also, the first shot usually misses (but don't count on that).

BEING ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY

Pick up your spent twelve grams and drop them in your recycling bin. The metal can be recycled. In some areas, recyclers pay for scrap metal, save them up all year and turn them in for money (to buy more twelve grams).

Durty Dan Sez:
When playing Stock Class you will notice that it takes less time in the morning to get set up. The paintmarkers are more player friendly . (While some are technologically ADVANCED, they are not technologically COMPLICATED.) You don't have to carry that much paint and air. Sure, twelve grams are not as economical as constant air, but the money you save on paint will more than make up for it.

Stock is fun, and it's the purest, most original form of paintball, the way it was meant to be played. I hope this helps you become that much better at it.



This article belongs to Durty Dan


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