Inside the Splatmaster
June 5, 2002
Inside the Splatmaster
The Survival game Splatmaster (s/n #C52713 pictured)
Lightweight polymer construction, very "solid"
feeling despite its "plastic" appearance.
Integrated peep sight
push button type safety.
11 round ammo capacity , one in the chamber, ten in
the magazine (requires cigar tube which slips into
the upper body.)
Integrated trigger guard with index finger rest.
single shot, push to cock firing.
powered by standard 12 gram CO2 cartridges.
Ball and spring type internal ball détente
(first use of this system in paintball??)
True stock class .
The NSG Splatmaster was the First successful mass
produced paintball specific marker produced solely
for the sport of paintball. Prior to the Splatmaster,
markers were adapted for use in paintball, or
borrowed from other applications. Manufactured and
Marketed by "The Survival Game" also known as
"National Survival Games" or NSG, in the mid
eighties, it was initially produced to support the
same companies franchised paintball field operations.
Cheap and easy to produce, with a simple design, it
was very successful. The Splatmaster lived right on
into the early 90’s, even after the field
franchises had been long gone.
Retailing for around $80.00, it was by far the most
economical paintgun available at the time, and
remained that way for many years. Later incarnations
of the original Splatmaster were the "Rapide" a
double action semi auto pistol with a 20 round
vertical spinloader, as well as the "Rapide Comp",
complete with constant air adapter, shoulder stock,
and a longer "sniper" barrel.
The Splatmaster is a pure stock class pistol. 10
round cigar type tubes fit into the upper receiver
above the barrel in the front. Arming the gun is
accomplished by pushing in a large plunger at the
rear of the gun. The sear is part of the trigger, and
catches on the guide rail which is attached to the
cocking plunger. This in turn locks the bolt and the
entire barrel in a forward position, allowing a ball
to drop into the breech. Pulling the trigger, the
bolt and barrel release, moving rearward, as CO2 is
expelled from the valve pushing the ball forward. At
rest the oval port to allow a ball to drop (rear end
of the barrel,) is just behind the ball feed port in
the gun body, which prevents double feeding by
blocking off the feed. A very simple, yet effective
Powered by a 12 gram CO2 cartridge in the integrated
grip handle (almost identical in design to the
original nelspot 007 marker,) the Splatmaster gets
between 20 and 30 shots to every 12 gram. The body is
made of a plastic type polymer, and is fairly
durable, yet lightweight.
Cutaway of the NSG Splatmaster
Service and maintenance:
Due to the simplistic design of the Splatmaster,
there isn’t much to do as far as maintenance
goes. Clean after every use with a damp cloth, swab
out the barrel, and your good to go.
Not recommended, but if you must: Loosen the
five small Phillips head screws via the access holes
in the body. Loosen the large phillips head screw in
the center of the body (this holds the valve in.)
Remove the barrel cap (one piece slip one fixture at
the end of the barrel which holds both halves of the
body together.) Finnish loosening all of the screws,
but do not remove them from the body, let them sit in
the holes so they don't get mixed up. Carefully
separate the two halves of the body, using great
caution not to loose the two small springs. One
spring is in the trigger assembly, the other is for
the détente. note how these fit, they may pop
out when you split the body open.
Reassembly is the reverse, the hardest part is
getting the détente spring back in. I highly
recommend you seat the valve on the valve screw first
(you left it in its half of the body right? , just
sit the valve back over it.)Fit the rest of the
assembly after that, you can put the trigger spring
in last, it will slip in easily after the rest is
assembled. Tighten all screws being careful not to
over tighten so you don't strip the threaded holes.
Test the mechanism, and check for leaks. Fire only
in a safe area , never pointing a loaded paintball
gun at anyone or any living thing outside of goggle
wearing game play.
The Splatmaster has no factory means of adjusting the
velocity. It will commonly shoot between 220
Feet Per Second, and 260 FPS.
Some industrious Splatmaster owners have added
spacers to the main spring, or found replacements, to
increase the velocity a bit.
The Splatmaster has a limited upgrade path. Some
possibilities are brass lining the plastic barrel for
greater accuracy, polishing the plastic barrel,
upgrading the springs for slightly increased
velocity, and possibly increasing the gas flow by
porting the valve a bit to improve consistency. I've
done none of these, but they would be welcome
improvements. Replacing the knurled knob that secures
the CO2 tank has been recommended in the past, as
they have a tendency to crack , or malfunction from
The Splatmaster performs lackluster at best. At times
it will misfire, or fire a low velocity round even
with a full 12 gram cartridge, or not even fire at
all. However, when it does prime properly, it has
good range and accuracy. Despite its short comings,
its a blast to play with. The light weight allows for
rapid movement. Being only about 13 inches long, its
easy to maneuver and has a low profile. I have played
speedball and hyperball with great success against
electro’s with my Splatmaster. Its also great
for recon and "snipering" at close range in woods
games. The most common use of the Splatmaster in
modern big games and scenarios is as a side arm, as
its easily holsterable and light weight.
Internal parts of a Splatmaster.
The NSG Splatmaster has earned its place in paintball
history, and continues to earn respect of fields
throughout the world today, almost 20 years after its
introduction. Its not the fastest, or the most
reliable, or even the prettiest paint pistol you can
find, but its durable and in my book, its
shortcomings just add a bit of adventure to playing
with one. Using one tends to remind us of the true
nature of the game we enjoy so much, that of
sportsmanship, honor, adventure, tactics, and oodles
of fun.. :)