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Old 05-02-2017, 10:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The PPS Blazer. Talk me in, or talk me out.

All,

Have recently fallen head over heels for the Resurrection, and that has gotten me thinking about the Blazer.

I recognize that for some people, the mystique of small operations, brass components, and old tech makes for a potent intoxicant.

However, for me, beauty is a function of function.

Okay, and also beauty.


I'm looking for a no-nonsense assessment of how the Blazer rates in terms of performance, durability, reliability and user-friendliness.

Definitely appreciate the enclosed aspect, but I've also heard these are monsters to try to service yourself, with a near-vertical learning curve.

I'm also frankly turned off by the Neanderthal vestigial parts like the absurd feedneck, the pointless (and ugly) dual detents, the comical slip-fit barrel, and some other little details of the marker, all of which indicate an unwillingness to bring the thing up to date.

Old is not good because it is old; rather, good is good because it is good.

What I like about the Resurrection is that, for all of its age in pedigree, it is absolutely a new marker, and glorious to shoot.

It is light, fast, efficient, has a wonderfully satisfying trigger pull and handles fragile paint like a dream.

So. That is the standard, and the basis for comparison.


To those of you that know (and especially, who have direct, long-term experience with both), what does the Blazer bring to the table that makes it worth considering, given its fully-built price tag is much higher than a comparable Resurrection?

Also, what flaws, other than noted above, does the Blazer have?

Have seen odd/abnormal bolt wear in them before, which makes me wonder about the operating geometry.


It would be nice to get a marker that can be relatively trouble-free and have ultra-high mileage racked up with little worry.

Thanks very kindly!
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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My "no-nonsense assessment":
The BLAZER is what a 'Cocker would be if it was made correctly.
Flawless operation, never goes out of time, run a fixed output 800 PSI N2 tank through a Stabilizer. Set the Stabe so you can't force the bolt ram forward with your thumb. It'll run like this for decades. Get a single ported brass .685 with Wedgits. I run a right feed, single trigger. Best mech semi ever designed. I swear, you won't be disappointed. If you don't believe me, just ask to borrow one for a game. That's how I got hooked, haven't looked back since.
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Great thread topic. This is coming from someone who has owned half a dozen each merlins, series 5's, 05 / late model j2's, and a few evolution autocockers.

Also have had a handful of blazers.

First I will address your stated flaws.

1. Feedneck, this feedneck design is totally adequate. By hacking it off you have yourself the basis for the most popular feedneck style on the market today, a style that clamps with a collar to the gun, and another collar to the hopper. It is totally up to modern snuff in this area when equipped as such.

In comparison, most cockers before the resurrection had the WGP feedneck system, which has threads so massive that the hopper was a couple inches above the gun...taller than most right feed setups. A truly terrible system.

The blazer here is at least in the middle. It isn't as good as a gun with Merlin feednecks, but it is better than a gun with a WGP feedneck.

2. The barrel. Frankly this is a sore spot for me. I am tired of people demanding autococker barrel threads for all guns. The barrels are expensive, the threads take a long time to underscrew unless you cut off a handfull of the threads like simon / inception has done, and well thats basically it.

In contrast the blazer system accepts any barrel after about 5 minutes of machine work. I know you might not feel comfortable finding a guy with a lathe in your town, but I guarantee you there are probably a dozen within two miles of you even in the smallest town. Literally any barrel can be turned down on a lathe to fit the blazer.

Very small bore barrels will require the breech end of the barrel to be relieved for the bolt tip.

Additionally, the factory barrels frankly are the best in the business. I know that you have a set of cocker threaded barrels that you love, or an insert system that you are comfortable with, but having used all of the above on both cockers and blazers, the only closed bolt barrel I would use these days would be an average bore barrel with wedgits. They shot the most consistently for me.

So again, I understand how this is a negative, but it shouldn't be a major part of your choice. a 12 inch ported blazer barrel is about as good as it gets.

Another benefit is the body does not have to get all beefy and fat around the barrel area in order to accommodate autoccker threads. This means the two bores on the gun are closer together (lower bore axis if performance things matter to you) and the gun is lighter than it otherwise might be.

3. The ball detents are flawless and I've never worn a set out. I'm not sure what you would rather see on the gun? Some rubber nubbins that cost 5 dollars to replace and need regular replacement? The ball detents are great.

4. The bolt is very short, way ahead of its time here. The body of the blazer is hard anodized and the bolt is not. This setup protects the gun itself from wear and tear and lets the bolt wear..since it doesn't matter. The bolt wears on the inside edges of the feed neck area from cycling. I've never seen one need replacing though I have heard of the bolt pin itself breaking off very rarely. This is one of the changes for the 2k blazer..the bolt pin goes all the way through and retains the bolt inside the body even if the pin snaps off the ram.

The geometry is just as good as a cocker which may or may not be saying much since automated cocking guns are pretty goofy compared to modern guns where the hammer is more directly attached to the ram "rammer"



To be honest blazers are way way underpriced on the used market, and priced very fairly at the retail level. It's only a matter of time before the cocker boom we are currently in will make its way to the blazer, which rules.

Also if you want a really light ram stroke you will need the "tinkers kit" which valves the gun for lighter main springs requiring less ram force. This is called the tinkers kit for a reason and last I checked PPS very much recommends the standard valve.

But my blazers in stock configuration would all chop a ball right in half if I short stroked it like a rookie.



It's one of those funny things. I made more miraculous pure luck / wizardry shots with my blazers than any other gun. The ergonomics of the gun just lend themself to kicking ***. It comes with the best cocker parts and none of them get beat to death when you play or just lay the thing down. No bent up rams and cocking rods and pump arms little spindly things all over the place. Its a gun for playing paintball and having a great time.

Don't get me wrong, I love the better autocockers that I have had, but at the prices they are going for these days on the used market, the blazer is the absolutely hands down better choice.

The resurrection is a good deal especially used. Its better than most old cockers by a big margin. It's not a tank like a blazer, but should shoot good. My post was mainly thinking about older out of production really nice cockers. The resurrection is different in that performance wise it is up there with the best of them, but the mojo of it is more typical paintball gun. Not old goodness, if you care about that kind of thing.

A working blazer is pretty much bullet proof, just add oil. Resurrections and cockers in general are more vulnerable to just getting beat up. You can't put you hand up close to the barrel on the resurrection, the blazer is way smaller and has more room for your hand. It feels different, fatter and just IMO bad ***.

I like the best of my cockers just as much as my blazer because I don't mind working on em and taking care of em, but these guns all cost a lot more than a used blazer these days, and if available new they would be still substantially more.
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Last edited by Cunha; 05-03-2017 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 05-03-2017, 01:20 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I've been using the same Blazer, BZ014, since 1999.......



And I also have BZ588.....



It's no harder than any other gun to service.


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Old 05-03-2017, 02:04 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I have serviced both the Blazer I have and several Autocockers.. replaced some o-rings and stuff, and honestly I don't see a difference in how hard they are to service. The last fix I did on the Blazer was replacing an o-ring in the LPR and it did take only a few minutes.
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Old 05-03-2017, 07:05 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THE-SHOOTIST View Post
My "no-nonsense assessment":
The BLAZER is what a 'Cocker would be if it was made correctly.
Flawless operation, never goes out of time, run a fixed output 800 PSI N2 tank through a Stabilizer. Set the Stabe so you can't force the bolt ram forward with your thumb. It'll run like this for decades. Get a single ported brass .685 with Wedgits. I run a right feed, single trigger. Best mech semi ever designed. I swear, you won't be disappointed. If you don't believe me, just ask to borrow one for a game. That's how I got hooked, haven't looked back since.
Until the Switch jams and bends the timing rod that's inside the grip frame. Or the bellcrank setup gets out of place. Or the ram bushing starts leaking and you need to replace an $60 assembly instead of a $20 ram like on a Cocker. Or the LPR conks out and you need a special tool to extract the red-Loctited end cap which gets destroyed in the process and needs to be replaced.

Blazers have their issues, just like anything else, and they're often harder to fix than a plain old Cocker.
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Old 05-03-2017, 08:28 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I bought a Blazer years ago when they had a Twin Sale for Craig's children. Vert feed, 45 hinge frame, stab, nice powder coated barrel with porting and wedgits. I hated it. I wanted to like it but couldn't get it to work. 2 different techs looked at it, finally got it decent enough that I dumped it. The barrel, feedneck, and in my case, reliability was horrible.

Get a Resurrection and don't look back.

(I've owned Evolutions, SFLs, CCM mechs and pumps, Super Stocker, and Resurrection/Snipers)



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Old 05-03-2017, 08:58 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Jordan View Post
Until the Switch jams and bends the timing rod that's inside the grip frame. Or the bellcrank setup gets out of place. Or the ram bushing starts leaking and you need to replace an $60 assembly instead of a $20 ram like on a Cocker. Or the LPR conks out and you need a special tool to extract the red-Loctited end cap which gets destroyed in the process and needs to be replaced.

Blazers have their issues, just like anything else, and they're often harder to fix than a plain old Cocker.
I believe they fixed the LPR issue on the 2k series. The 1ks had LPR disassembly issues.

When my blazer was shooting, it was the best semi I had ever shot. It was a 1k blazer. My problem was that it would shoot fine at home but the second I'd get to the field a leak would pop up somewhere. You could usually dump some oil in it to seal and that would be a temporary fix.

If you buy one, get a 2k Version used from MCB. Thats the cheapest way to go.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Menace View Post
I'm also frankly turned off by the Neanderthal vestigial parts like the absurd feedneck, the pointless (and ugly) dual detents, the comical slip-fit barrel, and some other little details of the marker, all of which indicate an unwillingness to bring the thing up to date.

Old is not good because it is old; rather, good is good because it is good.
- I agree on the feedneck point but all sorts of options are available for that. PPS was willing to thread the feedneck for any of the popular options out there.
- Dual detents work so they stayed.
- I dont understand the slip fit barrel point. Once you put your barrel on at the beginning of the day you wouldnt need to take it off for the rest of the day. All the cleaning can be done by removing a bolt and your entire top tube is clear and ready for cleaning. There are no threads to mess up
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Old 05-03-2017, 10:32 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Both a 2K Blazer and Pyre [based off 2K's extrusion] user. My Pyre is my main paintgun because it is so reliable for me so I went a got a 2K Blazer to compliment it for the days I want to use a Semi. I have had zero issues with the 2K Blazer, I pull it out, little oil in the asa and screw in a bottle and put it to use. When done clean it up and put it into the bag. For me function over form everyday and my Blazer functions every time. Granted it does not get near the use as the Pyre but that is because I prefer pump play not due to any deficiency I've experienced with the Blazer.

Cunha's description of the Blazer and its attributes I agree with [except I use RF so need an elbow but I prefer it that way].

I love the simplicity of the Blazer/Pyre barrels I own 3:
  • 10" unvented [came with gun] that never gets use anymore due to noise level teammates hate it
  • 14" Dual Vented 0.684 w/Wedgits [used almost exclusively]
  • 14" Single Vented 0.690 w/Wedgits [used infrequently]

Since I bought the Pyre and the subsequent Blazer I have dumped all of my Snipers and Autocockers with the exception for my custom Sniper I was using up to getting the Pyre [sentimental attachment].

Only issue I have had with either is due to me trying to use my Pyre after a playing hiatus and not oiling it up first. I damaged the built in reg seat.
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Old 05-03-2017, 11:39 AM   #10 (permalink)
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good is good because it is good.
I like this
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