mcarterbrown.com  

Team Blackrain Home of Team Blackrain

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-14-2010, 05:43 PM   #31 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

My thoughts of sponsorship




So let’s talk about the big word “Sponsorship”. To some it means making a name for themselves in Paintball, to others it’s a status. To me it’s “Help to give back to this great sport” when I can.

I’ve only played in a few Tournaments in my 23yrs of playing. I really suck at the game and I’m no one special. My body is beat up from 21 yrs of military service. I’m overweight and smoke. I probably run the 40 yard dash in 90 seconds, so that tells you how fast I really am.

Every so often I can still pull out a great move on the field. I think I’m even friendly to people I meet at other fields. Man I hope I don’t annoy any of you.

I travel way to much with my job and can’t even make a big or major event.

So how did I get all my sponsors. Maybe this will help some of you.

To be very honest this all started out as a JOKE, just poking fun at sponsorship in general. However all that took a turn for the better. I was approached by a well known person in paintball and on the MCB forum.

We exchanged a few emails and next thing you know I have a sponsor. Nothing expensive, just a decent discount for supplies. I didn’t take advantage as some would do, because he is just a small business and depends on retail to keep him afloat.

Then it all of a sudden fell into place. Small business was were it’s at. I didn’t just pick them random, They were people who had helped me in the past and still continue to help me to this day.

I review a lot of my sponsor’s items, and if you have read any of my reviews, you know I’m truthful about what I write. I don’t care who gave it to me, if it was free or at a discount, I’m going to be truthful about it. I can’t help my sponsors or players if I lie about a product.

One thing a lot of players forget, small business can become big companies. If they don’t become big companies, then they stay small and still provide an excellent service to you and the community.

So in other words I wanted to help out those who helped me any way that I can/could.


Do I have an advantage:

Yes I do in a way. I travel the US and the World with my job. I travel with my gear, so I’m able to play when I can. Thus reaching a larger player base for my sponsors. I have a lot of fun doing it. My goal is to eventually meet all my sponsors within the next yr or so.


Sponsorship:

Well it has been a yr since I enquired about sponsorship from a few places. To be honest, it was very easy. It’s really about presentation and how you ask the person(s).
When you speak to a prospective sponsor, appearance is everything. Body language and English language. Be respectful at all times. Most of the sponsors I deal with, know me or know of me. They know I’m a straight up guy who will keep my word.

I posted a very truthful resume about myself, and let the sponsors know what I could and can’t do for them. They were very understanding about all of it.

I think what kind of threw some off was that I was just a one man team. I don’t think that it’s rare, but kind of odd in a way. I was surprised that some took the chance, but then again, look at how much money they saved with me.

I’m not very good, I careless if I win or loose. I can’t run very fast, so I’m really slow. I guess because I love the game so much, and just play to have fun, was a main reason. Also I am very thankful for help that I have received from companies in the past.

Many were happy with the reviews I wrote and the business I bought them long before I even considered sponsorship. It was just my way of saying “Thank You” for the quality service that was provided.


Free Stuff:

I’m often asked if I get “FREE STUFF” and the answer is “YES”. However that
“FREE STUFF” is given away to young players starting out or to a local field for them to test or use on their equipment. Remember, “NOTHING IS FREE” in a sponsorship. There is a price to pay for having sponsorship.
Sponsored items are something that is to be shared with other players who can’t afford or do not have or could be potential customers. At least that’s the way I look at it.

For example, if a player has fogged goggles, I better be applying some Fog Doc on them, even if it means missing a game. That’s what my sponsor would expect from me. That’s the responsibility I took on accepting the items and sponsorship.

It’s my job to make sure I show the player how it’s used, how to apply it and what to use to clean it.
It’s also my responsibility to make sure that players leave with a free sample and ordering instructions.

Maybe he/she won’t order an item, but I’m sure he/she will let their buddy use it and he/she may order some.


Discounts:

Yes I get discounts. If someone wants to test drive one of my sponsor’s barrels, I better let them use it. How else can they know for sure if that’s what they want. I better know the specs and who makes it. Be able to tell them the history of the barrel and how to order it.
When I get a discount, I buy just what I need.
For example, I only use 100 round pods. I bought 12 from my sponsor at a discount.

I have a lot of 100 round pods, enough to hold two cases of paint at one time. I make sure my sponsors pods are loaded and used first before I use another. Even the Pit Crew knows that.

A few months back I lost two on the field. A young man returned them to me and I let him keep them. One for honesty and the other reason was to help him out. He didn’t have many pods and I know money is tight. He probably saved his “Lawn Mower” money for a few months just to make that weekend. It didn’t hurt me any and it put a smile on his face.
He left happy and I felt good, but he also left with a sponsor flyer. Maybe he’ll use it sometime down the road when he has a little more money in his pocket. Maybe he will do the same thing I did for him when he has a sponsor. There is always a positive reaction in paintball.



What not to do:

It is team policy not to get hundreds of dollars worth of items from our sponsors. It’s just not right. They have bills and families. Money is tight all around. Even with companies.

Being a one man team makes decisions very easy.

There is no arguing with team members and items that we receive, are needed and well appreciated. The items are put to good use. No commitment to a team or tournament is a great feeling. Knowing I’m not going to hear any whining or crying about my choices in products or sponsors. I’m free to promote my sponsors as I please and my way.

My Wife who is my pit crew usually directs me towards a person who needs help. There are times I do not wish to be bothered, but what kind of player would that make me. That is why I choose the playing style I play. I can take a few games off to help a player with gun issues or fogged goggles. I don’t have to worry about other team members. Also my team reputation is on the line.

I would like to say that our total sponsor package for the 2011 season has probably reached an all time high of $150 total of all sponsor’s combined items.

To many players, That does not seem like a lot, but for what we have received, that will last well thru 2011 and probably into half of 2012 season. I’m not wasteful with items. Just because I’m sponsored, does not mean that I get items every time I call.

I’m working on a gun sponsorship now. Nothing fancy no real big name. It’s something new and old that’s on the market. I have already made the deal and he understands that this will not be my main gun. I still prefer my 99” Auto Cocker over any gun I have used.
He understands that and is okay with it.

What I will do after I’m done playing with it for the day. I’ll let other players use it and test drive it for a game. Get their feed back on it and help my sponsor improve on his item with player feed back.

The gun will not be free, it will be at a discount but it will be mine to use as I please. Promoting him and his product is priority, as with all my sponsors.

Now many players wouldn’t take a gun unless it was a big name sponsor or a $1000+ gun. Hey you take what you can get. Bad Company did not do to bad when they were shooting stock Spyders for a season.

This gun probably won’t be ready for a while, but I can wait without putting pressure on him.



My Contract Agreements:

Well let’s just say they are not bound by paper work, but by the WORD OF TWO MEN making an agreement to up hold a promise. I know in this day and time that’s a hard thing to do or even hear of, but that’s how I conduct business.

The option I leave my Sponsor, they can walk at anytime due to not being happy with me or are just plain tired with paintball, or financial hardship has hit them. No ill feelings. I won’t talk or post bad about them on forums. That’s not what grown men do.

I guess the total over view of all this is not to be Greedy and accept what you are offered. Don’t try and go after a major brand, especially if your starting out. Help to promote your local small Paintball business or smaller companies on line. Your treated a lot better, it’s more personal, you won’t have the stress that major companies put on you to win.



SPONSORSHIP IS EARNED and NOT JUST GIVEN.

Many new players feel that they should get sponsors right off the bat, just because they have been a team for two months and have been playing for 4 months.
Just because you shoot an EGO, doesn’t mean you deserve sponsorship from Planet Eclipse. What you really need to do is sit back and ask yourself, what you have really done for the sport of paintball. Have you really paid your dues that you deserve to have their items in your stable?

To be honest, If a company gave me just a shake and shoot hopper, I’d promote the HELL out of it. Reason, because I would be very proud to know that they thought of me that much to give it to me. I’m that type of player and always will be.

As of now, Team Black Rain will have 10 sponsors to carry into the 2011 season. We are very happy that they are willing to take a chance with us and appreciate they accept how much I travel with my job. They understand that I cannot attend major events or play as often as most do. It’s just an understanding that we have. I can’t change my life just for paintball. The real world doesn’t work that way.


Thanks To:

Celanis Paintball
Whiskey Two Four
Mcarter Brown
Oregon Hydrographics
B&M Chainmaille and Jewelry
Fog Doc
Oring Monkey
First Class Paintball
FoxxyFluff Paintball
Nana’s Bandanas (Thanks Mom)


Standards:

You have to have standards when you pick a sponsor. Well atleast I do. Since a one man team cannot always travel or attend major events, I have to carefully pick and choose who I ask.

If I was offered a major company sponsorship (which I know will never happen),doesn't mean I'll accept it. I have to make sure it's what I want in my stable. It has to fit the team profile.

Truthfully I wouldn't accept one of the newest guns on the market if it was given to me for free. I would really have no need for it and possibly the company. I just check out all the others who have spent money on them Ask questions and maybe play a game with it. Then if I like it,I'll research it and probably buy a used one.

I run my team how I see fit,and play where I want to. I can't let a company regulate me. I created Team Blackrain many yrs ago. I'm not going to let a company or individual ruin it.

It is nice seeing my team name on a few of my sponsors pages. That to me is just perfect. It's nice knowing I can just have fun when I'm playing and stop playing for the day when I want. No sponsor looking over my back wondering why I'm not winning or making game winning moves.

I like the fact that my Team Jersey doesn't look like a NASCAR racing suit. Stickers are put on as an option if I decide to. That's why I have a Helmet.

I do manage to make sure I keep my sponsors seperate. That meaning,if I get MOLLE from one place,I'm not going to accept MOLLE from another sponsor,with out the permission of my Tactical sponsor. It's just not good business.

I have a sponsor that provides lens for my mask,I won't accept a set of lens from another sponsor. They are designated as my sponsor for pods and other items.

In doing this I keep peace with myself and able to keep peace with my sponsors. They all provide a unique service and I want to keep it that way. It's just nice knowing that I can try and help out a few great people that the paintball community hasn't heard of,or heard very little of.

Also I have known a few of these guys for a few yrs and I would like to keep them as my friends.

What I have learned on this path I have traveled, It’s not easy having sponsorship. It’s my responsibility to write reviews. My responsibility to have a banner made. My responsibility to make sure their name is put out to the public. Try and make big events even if they are local.

Trial and error has taught me a few things and all I can do is get better. This is a different yr and a new season.

If you see us at an event or your field, come on up and say hello. I don’t bite very hard these days. Age is catching up.

Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 07-21-2012 at 02:48 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2010, 10:49 PM   #32 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Hell Fish Tv Review

contact

Never really heard of these guys till I went to Dan Bonebrake's Super Game 40in Oregon.

I wish I could have gotten all their names,but unfortunatly I didn't. Would have made this review much better. Maybe they'll chime in once I link them to this review.

I can say that the camera men are brave. Being right out in the middle of the game with no protection,taking hits and not flinching. That's alot of concentration. Hell Fish has video cameras everywhere. Covering all angles of the field(s).

You can catch these guys running straight into fire fights following a group making an assult on key buildings or strategic points on the field. Basically NO FEAR when it comes to getting that perfect piece of footage.


What I liked most about Hell Fish:

During the entire game day,there was a screen tv set up so that all could see what was shot on the field of play.

The company answered all questions without issues or getting upset and were able to give a release date for the game DVD with confidence.


Video received:

There was a minor issue with the video. apparently some that were sent out did not have the DVD. Jeremi from Hell Fish contacted everyone as soon as they were aware of the issue.
They could have waited till players called, but they didn't. My only concern was how many players were actually dishonest enough to say they didn't receive one when they actually did.

Regardless this is top notch service from a company that I hope to purchase more game DVDs from.


Over view:

These guys are very professional in filming and public relations. Very down to Earth and overall great people. If you ever see them at an event stop by and say hello. I'm not sure how far they travel in the USA and beyond.

They delivered when they said and it was a quality production.

I look forward to seeing these guys at Super Game 41 and 42. So if your holding an event,get ahold of them and have them film it for you. Not sure what they charge,but they will make you a nice video.

Later,
Blackrain
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2010, 05:07 PM   #33 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

APP barrel Cap:






New from my sponsor Titus of Celanis Paintball.


Titus' APP Products Sales Thread


I've been dragging my feet on this one. Been injured and working over time,but now I have a whole weekend to write a review.


First impression:


As with all APP products,it was built very well. Titus only carries quality items in his shop.

The barrel cap is blow molded and very sturdy. They are tough little item to have in your gear bag. As you can see from the picture above the items come in an assortment of three colors. They come with the standard shock cord landyard that adjust for tightness.

What I like most about the Shock cord, is the way it was set up. The shock cord wraps around the cover in a groove at the end of the cover. What this does is allows you to always put the barrel cover on the same way. Also in doing this,it allows for the shock cord to be passed thru both holes in the barrel cap and then run thru the cord lock and into a lock at the end of the string.





I like the end cord locking system. This was really thought out. I can't say they are not on other barrel socks but I haven't seen them.
In doing this,it makes the barrel cap a little safer to use.





My biggest fear has always been that a marker is accidentaly shot and one piece of the shock cord that is sewn in the bag comes loose. A surprised player will normally shoot one if not several rounds before they realize what is happening. With todays E-markers, triggers are so sensative,that squeezing of several rounds at one time is nothing.

There is a nice little hook on the end of the cover. I am assuming it is to hang it after washing or end of days play. I also see attaching this to a clip on gear. Say maybe a GRIM LOCK.









Another specific item I noticed on the top and bottom of this cover were the ribbed sections. These ribs came in handy. I had gotten hit and wiped off the mark with my left hand. Reached in my pocket to grabb the barrel cap. When I slid it onto the barrel,I noticed even with paint on my gloves,the Ribs did not allow my hands to slip down or off the barrel cap. It gave me a very firm grip. Amazing what you notice that you didn't notice before :rotfl: These ribs will also help to hold the barrel cover in the event of accidental gun discharge while putting on the barrel cap.


The paintball test:

So how does it hold up to say 50 rnds being shot into it at about 290 FPS.

Warning always wear some kind of eye protection when shooting any type of fire arm,or air rifle.

Everytime I test an item,I do as if I were a new player. I know I should have been wear a mask,but I had on glasses. This is a common rookie mistake that I wanted to show how important goggles are.

This is what happens when shells start to fly out of the barrel cap:







So let's clean it up:

Took it over to the sink to clean up the damage. To my surprise,paint was hardly in the barrel and none in the breech. The breech was clean as a whistle.




After washing out the paint from the barrel cap,this is what I found on the inside. What didn't shoot out the back of the barrel cap stayed inside.


How did it work during a game:

Well I'm not an AGG player,so I put my barrel cap in my pocket. I paid money for it,I don't want to loose it. I can say this. My memory isn't as sharp as it was 23 yrs ago,when it comes to remembering which pocket I put my barrel cap in. With the APP barrel cap,since it is plastic,it's just a quick "pocket patdown" and I know where it is. Since it is a blow molded plastic,it doesn't collapse,meaning I can feel the item in my pocket from the outside,even with gloves on. I couldn't do this with just a normal barrel sock.

These are a great deal at $4.75 + S/H from Celanis Paintball:

Titus' APP Products Sales Thread

So contact Titus here on MCB and he can help you out right away. Great person to deal with.

My over all thoughts. Let's face it, it's an APP product. They are well know for making quality almost indestructable plastic parts. They'll last you for yrs. Corners aren't cut and they are one of the few Paintball companies left were "QUALITY and CUSTOMER " really matters. When you buy an APP product,you know it will last for yrs and is strong and durable.

Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 11-13-2012 at 01:23 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2011, 05:48 PM   #34 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Guru Pod stand:




New from sponsor:

FirstClass Paintball

When I was first told about these I was kind of excited. What really got me to buy it was the fact that my sponsor said how much it would help my wife out while she was loading pods. Yea that sales pitch hooked me right away. Make things easy for the pit crew,and you'll be ready for refit quicker.

So we discussed my price and two were ordered. I imagine there was a delay in orders, due to the time it took me to get them,but it wasn't long and it was a new item on the market.

My Sponsor Pat bought them to me and he had opened one up to take a display picture for his page. No biggy to me. The only issue I really see is how loose the pods fit in the rack. I figured they would have been a little tighter,but then again as you can see from the picture, not all pods are made the same. I imagine this is an issue that GURU will work on.


Filled with 100 rnd pods:

As you can see,not all 100 rnd pods are the same either.








Once they are lifted,they will not fall thru,even with full pod weight.






Regardless of the fit short coming,they are still a needed item for the team and we use whatever helps us out to make refit faster.

So this is a very simple item to put together. It takes about 30 secs if not less.


Let's unwrap it and lay it out:






The joining slots:

They don't look pretty,but who cares,they are straight and join up perfect.






Slide in the lower handle slots into the rack slot:






Next slide in the upper handle slots into the upper rack slots:






It's just that simple. You really have to be an idiot not to be able to put this together without instructions.

This rack is made of a sturdy plastic,probably delrin or some kind of ABS or zytel plastic. Not sure if it's blow molded or stamped. I'll forward this review on to GURU and see if they can answer a few questions on this item that I was not able to. I'm almost positive they are blow molded then milled with slots after words.

I would reccommend this item to any individual or team. I consider it a must need for my team,even though I am just a one man team. This will make getting back onto the field faster. Just drop the empties and fill with full pods.

I like that this item can break down and be stowed away. Give me a week or so and I will post up the carry bags we have designed for this particular item.

So please visit my sponsor:

FirstClass Paintball

and pic up a few of these nice pod stands.

Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 07-20-2011 at 12:14 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2011, 01:15 AM   #35 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

TyMcneer's Brass Freak-compatible insert

TyMcneer's Brass Freak-compatible insert

So I'm a Freak Barrel guy. When the Freak first came out I wasn't a believer. Reason being,because I didn't think paint at the time was that inconsistent. So I would just switch out barrels and I was good to go. Then a few yrs later I started to notice that paint was really changing in size. That and the weather in Washington state is really inconsistent. So diameters of paint was really bad during the winter.

Yes I know many people don't believe that theory about paint swelling and shrinking,but I do. So one day while playing I just had consistent roll outs and it really pissed me off. So off to work some overtime at the job. Finally I scrape up enough cash to get a full freak set. Why not,might as well go all the way when you buy something,plus I had really earned that money.

So flash forward. I still use that same kit. I wouldn't get rid of it even if I was given a free Hammer Head set,or the new Tech-T set. I need all the sizes I have. Regardless if I needed them,I have them. Until that one day when the smallest insert was allowing paint to roll out.

Dammit,that's a 0.679 that was allowing this roll out. Maybe it was just bad paint. So I try a few more and guess what,more roll outs. Well here we go again. So I switched brands of paint for a while and that seemed to work. I was good to go.

Then one day while browsing in the MCB Airsmith forum I notice that TyMcneer's is making Brass Freak-compatible inserts. Wow smaller diameter,this is going to help. So off to work the overtime again,I must have these inserts. So I scrap a little cash together,sell a few items and I soon have the cash.

I order the Full Monty:

0.670
0.675
0.680

Now I'm in business. Shortly after receiving these, I attend a scenario game at Lake Stevens,Wa. That morning was wet,nasty and cold. So I register,buy my paint and off to size it with my freak inserts. I started at a .682 and to big,.680,still to big. I drop down to the .675 and it starts to slide in with the friction fit I was looking for. The .670 was a little tighter then I wanted,so I found my happy medium. As the day went on,the Sun began to peek it's head out.

As temps go up,things start to swell. Such as paintballs. So I get shot out and go back to check insert size. over the course of a few hrs I was now at the .680 insert where I remained at till the end of the day. Once again it was the happy medium that I wanted. If it wasn't for this inbetween size,I probably would have had a crappy day to go with the crappy weather of that morning.

To be very honest I have had to use my .670 on a few occasions. These custom inserts travel every where I go to play paintball,be it in the United States or in another country.


FIT:

Well I have read a few reviews on fit up in a freak back. I'll be very honest with everyone here. I didnot have one issue with fit in a Smart Parts Freak back (I own 6 freak backs) nor in any barrel that I have had board out to accept freaks.

I imagine if you have tarnish on your brass inserts,that can cause a little more friction then you want. I just take some Never Dull or Brasso to my inserts and polish them right up. Less friction,the better the parts move.

Now these are my beliefs and opinions,I'm sure there are others out there who feel I'm wrong,but that's your opinion.


Would I buy from Ty again:

You bet your A$$ I will. As I write this,Ty is making me another custom fit brass insert in a smaller size ID that I requested. I can't wait for it to arrive. Paint is going to get smaller is my opinion. Untill the companies decide to all sell one size or they are bought out by one large company. The push for .50 on some forums is stil very alive. I'm sure there are companies that wouldn't mind paint shrinking that low. For now .68 is still the KING and choice of the player.


What are my long term plans:

Well we all know that Ty has a real job as most Airsmiths do. Once I get this last custom insert,it will be time to order the last 6 inserts that I need.

For now all I can say is these are a great item to have in your gear bag. You may not always use them,but when you do,they'll be there for you.

Later,
Blackrain
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2011, 01:46 AM   #36 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Paintballer 187 engraving:

Laser Engraving and Custom Vinyl Decals

Please don't ask what my price was.


Most of you have seen my POW/MIA gun. It was a special project that was very close to my heart. Engraving the names of those who have been lost to us was a special touch to give the gun more meaning to the message that I wanted to pass along as I travel around and play with it.





When I received the first name (Thank You Duce), I wanted to find an engraver that would be able to do what I needed and do top quality work. Thanks to all those who sent me names of potential engravers. Eventually I will use them all for future projects I have in mind.

I chose Paintballer 187. He is a resident here on MCB. I try and use as many MCB members that I can. I want to keep the money and work with in the "Family".

I contacted Paintballer 187 by email and by phone. I had seen his work on this forum before and was rather impressed with it. His prices were very easy on the wallet. We discussed what I wanted done and what this ment to me. We agreed on a very decent price for engraving and shipping and etched the deal in stone.

So I sent it off with instructions on where to etch the now. About a week goes by and I get an email from him with a picture asking exactly where I wanted it and the direction of print. I was really amazed with this,because he didn't just make the decision to do the engraving and leave it at that. Thru my very crude "Paint" skills,I was able to fix the picture the way I wanted the printing and "OK" the location for the engraving. I was very happy that he contacted me. This tells me he cares about his customers and wants to "Do it right" the first time.


His way:




My way:






Once the work was completed,he sent me his paypal addy and I paid for the work. From the time of payment to delivery was way to fast from Mich. He must have sent it out prior to me paying for it,with enough trust that I would pay right a way (Thank You for that trust).

I was very happy with the end results and to be honest when I attached the reg to the gun I did tear up. The impact of what I was doing really didn't hit me till right then when it became real. It was beautiful flawless work. You guys know me,I always want perfection when I build.





So thank you to Paintballer 187 for the great work that you did. You will be the only one to engrave on this gun.

Now the question that all are wondering. Will I use him again? You Dam right I will. I'm sending my Freak Back off to be engraved. I'll post pics as soon as it arrives back to me.





So if you need engraving,follow the link and give Paintballer 187 some business.

Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 02-11-2011 at 02:04 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2011, 12:56 AM   #37 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Scenario Super Store

Welcome to Scenario Superstore -

Just last week I needed an ION frame. Now as cheap as Iam,I looked everywhere. I even bought a whole body kit from ANS just to get an after market frame. Big mistake,that's the biggest after market kit and frame I had ever seen. It actually scared me. It weighed the same as a fully assenbled ION.

So I'm running out of time,the ION frame is becoming a scarce item to be had. With all my options gone and I figured I bothered GOG enough,I decided to try one of their new outlet stores. So I go in house.

Basically not a GOG outlet store,but a store started by our own Delta Paintball, who has ties with GOG as a sponsored team if I'm correct. Either way it's another business we need to support on MCB.

So earlier I had gotten an email from Shadawg asking a question about an item he had sent me. It then Dawned on me that he was part of Delta Paintball. So I ask the question about a stock ION frame. Figured I'd get an answer on Monday. He answered me back a few mins later. Now this is a Saturday mind you.

So we talk price go back and forth with the emails and come to a price and additions to the frame. I paypal and within mins I get a tracking number. Make along story short,my package gets here on Tuesday. He lives in Pa. and I live in Wa. So we are oposite sides of the state and I get my item that fast. I know he sent it on Saturday, so he must have just hit the post office at the right time.


Now to give you an over view of the store:

Naturally the store carries GOG guns and repair parts. That is their main distributor. They also carry the Inspire guns and Oring kits. As you scroll thru the menu and site you will see many items such as SLY and Valken Clothing in various speedball and camo fashion.

There are various barrels and they are also one of the few stores that I know of, who carry GI MILSIM items. There is an assortment of Tactical vest,pod carriers and pouches available for different styles of play. The site also has various paint brands and I believe reballs,along with HPA bottles,back packs and gear bags.

The store contains a little bit of everything and are not bias to just one format of the sport.



What would I like to see:

I would like to see more entry level packages such as:

ENVY
MASK (decent)
CO2 Bottle
Vest pods or pod holder with pods

Perhaps that is in the works. The store is not that old,so business needs to build. So everyone here on MCB needs to try and help support our "IN HOUSE SHOPS".

So far they don't have paint grenades or land mines available,but maybe soon


If I haven't mentioned yet,I was very happy with the service I received and hope to do more business with them very soon. I might need a few more ION parts.


Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 07-20-2011 at 12:12 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2011, 01:55 AM   #38 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Even though I went thru a sponsor,this mask was not FREE. I did pay for the mask. So there is not any doubt I will write a very truthful review.




I will be comparing the Tippmann 420 Mask and the SLY Prophet Mask to a certain degree.

Actually all you can really do is compare the lense locking system which is an exact copy cat of each other. I don't really want to get into who actually came up with this system or who owns the rights.

My personal opinion is that I wish other companies would follow this example of lense removal system. I just hate having to snap in a lense. You sometimes get them just a dirty as they were when you took them out to clean :rotfl:


First off thanks to my sponsor BenoitOWN, who answered a new mask question and right away offered his services to help. Next thing I know I get a UPS package from Valken. This is one of BenoitOWN's USA drop ship distributor. BenoitOWNS is a member and dealer of our MCB community.



MCB Link:

www.mcarterbrown.com


Foxxy Fluff Store link:

My paintball e-shop


Valken:

http://www.valken.com/paintball/



Even though he deals from Canada,BenoitOWN can also help out those who are USA customers with excellent quality service. Contact him here on the MCB board and I bet he can help you out alot better then other vendors.

The one thing I always care less about is packaging concept. This mask will work just as well in a blister package then in the round container it came in (Which is a very durable container).

Just a little over kill for me. However my Mom was happy with it. Couldn't wait to get her hands on it
Not sure what she did with the container,probably using it to store her sewing items in. Either way it's going to a good use and being recycled into a useful daily item. So it's a catch 22


The container is very clear with description of parts and such,but as mentioned before, blister package it and reduce the size of box needed for shipping. Who really uses this container? I know I don't put it in my gear bag,takes up to much room.










The mask also comes with a nice plush mask bag. This is the best mask bag I have ever seen come with a mask. Only way to improve it, would be to make a molded slide in case for the mask. I don't see this bag going anywhere anytime soon






Fits very well with my helmet:





Now I hear alot of different stories about this mask such as:


Cuts out sound

Padding hurts the ears




I'll be very honest,this mask is perfect for me. My only complaint is the chin strap which I will soon remove.



So what do I like about this mask:

First off,either SLY and Tippmann have joined up together,or a Law Suite is about to happen. So why am I saying this, well the lense locking systems are the same.



Tippmann 420 Mask/locking system:















Sly Prophet Mask/Locking system:






The ease of lense removal is a 100%+ for me. I feel every mask out there should have a lense removal system such as these two mask. Lense are in and out in seconds. Depending also if you are switching out or cleaning. Basically you are looking at about 5 seconds to remove and a few seconds longer to install.


Lense Removal:

I found the ease of removal and cleaning between games with my FOG DOC cleaner worked out perfect.


Fog Doc Link:

http://fogdoc.com/



Just using a Dime/penny to unlock the lense system was a whole new world for me. The ease of lense cleaning went to a whole new level. I may never use my DYE I3's ever again.



DYE Link:

http://shop.dyepaintball.com/






Tippmann Lense removal:





Sly Lense Removal:




Tippmann Link:

http://www.tippmann.com/splash.aspx


SLY Link:

http://slyequipment.com/


This is really about as far as you can compare these two mask. The only real comparison is the locking system. Let's face it,the Tippmann mask does suffer in many areas such as padding. Me personally,it looks as if were designed for a person with a small face. It would kill me after just a few mins of use walking around the house with it on. The lack of padding made it uncomfortable and did hurt my ears a little. I'm just going to give it to a beginner who is in need of a decent starter mask.

As mentione you can't compare quality or craftsmanship in these two mask. Even as cheap as Iam,I still buy quality and comfortable mask. After all it is the most important part of paintball equipment there is,so spend a few extra bucks when you buy a mask.



Ear padding

I found no reason to not like it. I didn't have any issues with hearing or pain. Actually the padding cut out alot of secondary noise. I was able to hear the action around me and others yelling. Gun signatures were more clear to me then before. So I'm not going to remove any padding.










My Likes:

What I liked most about the mask was the space between the lense and my face. Before coating the lense with FOG DOC, I went freestyle for about an hr with any coating on the lense. It was very warm and humid that day. I experianced VERY Little fogging and I mean VERY little. The mask has excellent ventilation flow in my opinion.

To be very honest I had a helmet on during this entire time. As far as my sports glasses,they did fog real bad . Even with the excellent spacing between my face and lenses and the use of FOG DOC. So the issue is me and not the mask fogging my glasses. I have one last alternative to use on the glasses.


This mask had excellent air flow and I can say even out in the woods I could feel air flowing thru the vents. This helped keep fog to a VERY LOW minimal. That's always a plus when you are having a great day of paintball. Nothing like fogged lenses ruining that perfect shot or just a day in general.

Once I coated the mask lense with FOG DOC, the issue of any lense fogging was completely gone for the rest of the day.

Air flow is 100%+. Best flowing mask I've ever used.



Double head Straps:

I thought this was an IDIOTIC idea. "Look at me I'm an AGG player". Well I'm the first to admit I was wrong. Even with wearing of a helmet, the straps weren't even noticable. No discomfort or annoyance of any kind. The straps made the mask fit alot better and held it in place better then any other mask I have used in my 23yrs of playing.

There was no slipping and it was a very firm fit.

I'm not just saying this because Iam a sponsored player,I'm saying this because it is true for my use and experiance. I will not write about a product and lie about it. I don't care who gave it to me.


My dislikes:

The chin straps need to go. They just aren't for me. I find them to be very annoying and of no real use for me.

I don't Superman slide,I'd rather take a hit. If you have ever seen me play you know this is true. I don't like laying on the ground.

I imagine the chin straps have a use but I haven't found one yet.


How to remove the chin straps:

Not everyone hates the chin straps,so there reall isn't a need to take scissors to them. You might sell the mask at a later date and the new owner may want the chinstrap.

1-Remove lense.





2-Grab the stap inside the frame with needle nose pliers.





3-Gently pull up.





4-remove the pins and pull down untill strap is removed.




Fan System:

Not really sure which fan will fit. There doesn't seem to be alot of slots on the top of the mask frame. For those who want a fan,I hear the HABER system fits. We have a few distributors of this fan system on MCB.



Haber Fan Link:

http://www.habervision.com/product/H...4-5649e26dc937


For now I have not found a use for a fan. The FOG DOC is working well for me.


So this review isn't finished. I'll add in every so often. Can't really evaluate on just one weekend of use. I won't be traveling much in the next few yrs,so it will be hard for me to write how other areas in the country or world affect the mask. So I'll just use Washington State ever changing weather system to write about the effects of use. For now I'm comfortable with what I have written, but as mentioned I'm never finished reviewing a product.


Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 12-07-2011 at 05:26 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2011, 02:12 AM   #39 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Valken Tiger Stripe Jersey





Well let's just say I'll have to spend a little money so it will be functional. It's pretty bad when the cuffs aren't even tight around the wrist. It's pathetict that the sleeves slide down over your hands,because the weight of the sleeves is greater than the pathetic wrist cuffs can hold.

Bad thing is the cuffs arent even cuffs,they are a cheap piece of jersey that's trying to be passed off as cuff. Now I could see if this was a one time mistake,but I tried on two shirts today,both different sizes and the cuff WEAKNESS was the first thing I noticed. I still bought the shirt,because I wanted to review the shirt and why it's so popular.


The Sleeve cuff:

Ok the pics you are going to see are over a lapse of about 10 secs. Yes I know my hand is straight up and not sticking straight down. The pictures you see are what happens as I move my wrist and hand. This is very unsat. Last thing I want to see is my sleeve hanging over my gloved hand. This is a major FAIL and a JOKE of what is suppose to be called a quality product.











So let's move on:

V collar:

Just another failed attempt at passing off cheap fabric for quality. Just low end Jersey Fabric.




So let's move onto the good part of the jersey:

The Tiger Stripe fabric itself is a decent Rip Stop 60% Cotton and 40% Polyester made in China.


NOTE:

BIG TIP let's create jobs in America and have them made here in our country.


Features:

Well the sleeves have all the commando velcro and and ID pouch that a person would need. Left sleeve has a Velcro strip for your blood type,team patch, and one of the velco patches actually transforms into an ID pouch.






Right side sleeve has a pocket covered in velcro. You can add a patch or whatever you want to the outer pocket and pocket flap. Pocket is fairly large. Looks like I can store a patch of my ciggarettes in their,plush a few other small items.





The shirt splits:

On each side to be exact. Says it's for ventlation or to cover your pods. Not sure I will ever find a need for this feature. I use a vest and if the rip stop does it's job,your sweat will keep you cool. I really don't have a need for this feature. I'll probably remove the velcro on each side and sew it down.





My final opinion:

Everyone has one,so this is mine. If I were to rate this shirt on a 1-10 scale I'd give it a 2.5 and I'm being nice. I'll give it a better rating once I replace the cuffs and maybe the collar. I still haven't checked the seams,but I'm just going to turn the shirt inside out and go over them for good measures.

I'm sure I'll piss off the FAN BOYS,but I'm not going to lie about something I paid good money for.

Could I take it back? Probably can,but I'm not going to do my local field like that,it's not their fault for factory failures.

Will I use it. Yep I'm going to beat the HELL out of this shirt.

So there you have it,my honest opinion. If I hurt your feelings oh well, you don't expect me to lie about a product do you.

Later,
Blackrain




Special Notes and additional information

We started to do repairs on the sleeves. Well do repair on the collar later.


Off with the low grade wrist cuff stuff:




Let's put on the quality stuff:





So this is how much we have to remove from the sleeve:







Here's how a cuff should fit on the wrist:





Wrist cuff is ready:

All pinned and sewn. Sewing is like machining. Measure twice sew once.





What the leangth of the cuff should be. The sleeve will be sewn at the top of the cuff. This will blouse the sleeve and keep excess fabric from catching, going over your hand when you are trying to shoot or pump.





The final serging:

Color of the thread doesn't matter,who's really going to see this. As long as it's sewn and won't come apart.




How much of inner pouch is removed:

About as much of the outer sleeve is removed,that's how much of the inner pouch is removed. Since both parts are sewn together:




This is how a cuff should fit,well atleast for me. I'm not into all the new "Girly Glove out of the sleeve". Also I'm really not into wearing clothes that don't fit properly.




So for now this is where I leave this project. It's almost to where I want it. I'll have to talk my Mom into fixing the collar also. That way it matches the cuffs,plus it's really not that great of a collar.

Later,
Blackrain



So now it's time to remove the collar and sew up the sides. I like to feel my collar. I like it high like it's suppose to be. It doesn't let your shirt ride back,it helps absorb sweat and can stop a few of those hits. Yea I could buy a neck protector,but it's very hard to find one that fits a 19"-21" inch neck (So I made one to fit).

How I like my collar others might not. The excuse of ventilation has seem to come up alot. Well it ventilates fine for me,I wear a vest,not a pod pack. If the vest gets to hot I'll just pull out my Brass Eagle pod carrier and let the sweat cool me down(That's what rip stop was designed for,hot and desert climates)


Off with the cheap collar:


We don't need this anymore. Going to add a better version.






Cut the new Jersey fabric:


Let's cut a new collar. Note the old collar. We'll make ours twice as wide.










Set up the height of the collar:






Stay stich and pin on the collar:


Very important step. You don't want to permanently stich anything till you are sure. Just like machining "measure twice cut once". Once you have established the final set up and you are satisfied,sew in the collar.









Sew on the collar:






Remove velcro:











Sew up shirt sides:






go play and have fun:

So a BIG SHOUT OUT to my MOM. She taught me how to sew,but she is better then I. So major projects are turned over to her for proper fit and wear

What did I get out of all this? I got a "ONE OF" Valken shirt that no one else has See how many people at the field(s) ask me where I got it from lol. I think the TAN cuffs and collar make the shirt look nice. Kind of brings out the color of the shirt. I know "It will make you been seen on the field. Ever notice that camo has the color TAN in it. TAN represents sun light in a wood enviroment.



So here it is all complete. Yea I know "The collar is to high there's no ventilation yada yada yada". This is how I like it. Protects the neck from a hit,actually absorbs some of the hit. The collar isn't restrictive,just looks that way it's loose around my neck. This will also help my neck from the vest I wear. Keeps the "Vest Burn Down".

As mentioned this is my flavor and not everyone else's. This is how I feel a jersey should be made,not "Ghetto Baggy". This is my opinion. If you want to spend money on something that is to big and doesn't really work for you,but want to be like everyone else then ignore this review.


So I'm sure there are a few people who aren't happy with what I have done. I can say this much. Unless it's a custom order,I will try on everything I buy for paintball cloathing. I'll inspect it aswell.

I normally don't buy jersey's made for paintball unless they are custom made, or I make them. This time I just got caught with my pants down on this purchase. Never again. I guess once in 23 yrs isn't a bad record.

I hope this has helped many of you out there,not in your decision wheater to purchase this item or not,but how to make improvements on your favorite jersey or on new jersey purchase.

Maybe I'm to picky or maybe I just expect more for my money. Maybe I'm not the player who is satisfied with what everyone else wants. Hey I'm not a fan boy,I don't really stick to just one product. If that was so, then I would still be shooting Nelson paint and playing with a 007. Hey aren't those two items still around????????????????



Just to make this worth my while,I bought these:


Yea I know they aren't a brand name or it's not what everyone is wearing,but it's what I like and what I wear. They are made by Propper. What the HELL since I spent $35,might as well get some matching pants for it. Actually not really matching,there is more brown in the pants then the shirt.

Oh well I'm not playing to make a fashion statement. Plus I'll wear these pants for work and yard work.







Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 05-28-2011 at 01:09 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2011, 11:38 PM   #40 (permalink)
MCB Member
 
blackrain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: America
Send a message via AIM to blackrain

Fog Tech








Let's get one thing clear now. I am not jumping sponsors. This is a review about a product I used today (5-28-2011).

I have talked with my sponsor FOG DOC and they are fine with this review without any heart ache. We spoke for a while and I let him know what I wanted to do. I explained my situation and FOG DOC was fine with it and wanted me to write this.

The item we are going to review is an alternative to what many can use if their Defogger or other products aren't working well.

Temps change,people sweat more than others,people breath heavier than others. Sometimes things just don't go right all day long.


So thanks to FOG DOC for being an Awesome Sponsor. Thanks to Shadawg for the fog tech.


I sweat like a pig and that's probably because I'm over weight smoke and breath heavy. So I've had issues with my glasses fogging. No matter what I have used it doesn't keep my glasses from fogging.
I have this issue about seeing more then 50 feet and finding blurred shadows was getting old. Even looking for a blacked out bush where Sun Light was suppose to be was getting old. Those are just a few things I had to do to adjust with not having vision.

So I was looking for a new mask with better space between lens and face. That way I had better air flow going between my face glasses and mask lense. Well I thought I had found it,and it turned out I was having the same issues with glasses.


So any way flash back a few months ago. I was PMed by Shadawg and he told me about Fog Tech and the issues he has with sweating. Told me he can sweat in a freezer. Sooooooooooo I agree to accept a pack that he wanted to send me for trial run and see if it would help my problem. I think he was acctually staking his reputation on it


Well I never seemed to either get it packed in my bag or I was off somewhere in the USA or the World. I got an email from Shadawg a while back asking how everything worked and sadly I could not give him any info,which upset me,because he took time out of his day to mail this product to me.

So how easy is this stuff to apply? Very easy,but I have to argue with the package claims. Maybe it's just me,but the application I put on isn't going to last up to 5 days. I just sweat to much for the lenses to stay liquid free. Not the products fault, my fault. So I'm sure under normal situations, this 5 day claim would actually work, However in paintball we really test stuff to the limit.

Using a micro fiber towel,I cleaned the lenses on my sports glases and applied the Fog Tech. It was just a quick wipe over the lenses and let dry for 5 secs. If you put to much on the lens it will leave a streak which is annoying as HELL

So I'm off to play. Both mask lens coated with FOG DOC and my glasses coated with Fog Tech.

Played a 15 min game in the woods with resurection,meaning I was going to have to walk up and down hills to resurect. Meaning heavy breathing and excessive sweating,not like I was already doing both :rotfl:

At the end of the game I walked out and the results as followed:


Wooded Enviroment:

Fog Doc-Clear and Minor moister in my mask lens.(Did not obstruct my vision)

Fog Tech-Minor moister in my sports glass lense (Did not obstruct my vision)



Open area obstical type enviroment:

10 mins continuious resurection and switching side everytime you were shot.


Fog Doc-Clear and no moister in my mask lens.(No obstruction of vision)

Fog Tech-Minor moister in my sports glass lense (No obstruction of vision)



Results,best day I have had in a long time. I could actually see and my person tag was doubled. It was a great day to have vision.

Now to be fair to both products,it was a kind of hazy day,temp was up and down as it normally is in Washington,and at one point even the SUN came out for a while. Also I wear a helmet without a fan,due to SLY not making one yet,but in production. So there was nothing to really keep the inside of my mask cool. HABER fan is looking promising and I actually told SLY about this product.


So my over all impression is this. FOR ME this is an excellent combo to use, for others it may not be. It's something that you can make a choice to use or not. Everyone has their favorite stuff to use. For me this is my POISON combination

So if you are looking for:

Fog Doc: fogdoc.com

Fog Tech: Contact Shadawg here on MCB


Please add comments and questions if you want.

Later,
Blackrain

Last edited by blackrain; 07-21-2012 at 02:53 AM.
blackrain is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

  mcarterbrown.com » Paintball Teams » Team Forums » Team Blackrain

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:21 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO
© MCB Network LLC