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Old 01-05-2019, 03:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Solution to bad paint woes: clubs vs fields

There's been a couple threads here lately, lamenting the small and often poor quality paint offerings at paintball fields. It's also been discussed how incredibly difficult it would be to break into the industry and try to fix the problem by making the product yourself. The costs would be extraordinarily high for the equipment and you'd have to have high volume sales in order for it to work out financially.

Unless you're going to a premier field, it seems like a lot of fields just don't care about the quality of their paint. Companies like GI make deals with the fields to provide paint, and they don't care how bad it is as long as they can keep the money flowing from the renters. Sometimes they don't even take care of the paint at all, not keeping it in a proper climate, not rotating paint that's been sitting for ages. It's crazy how little regard they have for the thing that is the main component of the game!

So why do we rely on the fields so much? Maybe the way to fix the situation is through the culture more than the industry itself. Let the commercial fields be for the renters. What the dedicated players need are paintball clubs. Organize a community of players and setup a private field. It doesn't take much land to setup a recball field. Ideally someone in the group would have the land, or perhaps you could find land where it would be allowed, or perhaps woodsball. Another possibility would be making deals with a commercial field to let your club play on a reserved day (for a fee of course) with BYOP.

I know some people will rolling their eyes at this; after all, who has a spare acre or two in their backyard for a small pb field? But all I'm saying is we should be organizing in whatever way possible to allow for BYOP. I believe that would solve a lot of the issue. I've had great luck with paint I've bought online from stores. The paint is usually inspected before it's shipped to me, and then once it's in my possession I can take the steps to properly store it and rotate it every now and then. If the culture shifted away from relying on fields, maybe more brick and mortar stores would eventually open up. As far as what the club would look like, I think it would look a lot like what the Scavengers have going on. It appears that they have a private field that they setup, and they also organize for events in the local area. Maybe one of them could chime in here to describe how they run their group.

There used to be far more paintball stores that weren't associated with fields. In my hometown when I was growing up, there was a paintball store even though there were no fields!

Bottom line: we need to take the power back from the commercial fields! Start playing the game the way you think it should be done, with the paint you want to use, in a PAINTBALL CLUB!!
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Last edited by atomicleaf; 01-05-2019 at 03:51 AM. Reason: grammar nazi: its vs it's
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Old 01-05-2019, 04:22 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've considered something like this, organized as a co-op that would provide a number of benefits to members including carrying insurance to obtain access to fields and the ability to organize games and events with public and private landowners that would otherwise be resistant to hosting games.

Haven't tried to organize anything.
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Old 01-05-2019, 07:27 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Where to start?
It's all about laws. Everything from zoning to liability to being a distributor, a club will get shut down if the authorities find out about it (which they will) and it's the landowner who takes the brunt of it and could face prison.

There's a reason they call it "outlaw" and there are people out there who would just love to take you to court.
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Old 01-05-2019, 08:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Maybe do something like this AND approach a field. That is to say, talk to a field about a reasonable fee to allow your club to use their own paint. They will lose the money per paintball, but wouldn't have the loss of rental inventory since most regular players own equipment.
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Old 01-05-2019, 08:46 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The answer I always get is that the paintball business insurance won't allow you to use paint that wasn't purchased at the field. They could just be saying that to keep selling paint. I have considered offering to pay a higher field fee in order to use my own paint.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:16 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Where to start?
It's all about laws. Everything from zoning to liability to being a distributor, a club will get shut down if the authorities find out about it (which they will) and it's the landowner who takes the brunt of it and could face prison.

There's a reason they call it "outlaw" and there are people out there who would just love to take you to court.
You're mistaken here. There is no authority that is going to shut you down and no one is going to prison; assuming that you're playing with the permission of the landowner.

There are legal liabilities, to be sure. Someone suffering an injury could sue for damages.

The simple solution to this is the same as fields use; insurance and proper safety measures. Most of these are acceptably priced and easily managed. Individuals can be further protected by incorporating the club as a legal entity, a relatively simple task and not prohibitively expensive for a group of adults.

Zoning may or may not be an issue depending on where you live, but just as private social clubs like the Elks or Eagles circumvent many regulations aimed at bars by closing their doors to the public; the paintball club would evade some of these concerns.

It was mentioned that insurance requires field paint only; it does not. This is a reason given by field operators to avoid argument.

Paintball distributors will sell to almost anyone, anytime. These days they're even offering skid shipping rates at ridiculously low quantities in many cases.

The only problem with the paintball club idea is getting the players. If your area is anything like mine, good luck.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:20 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The answer I always get is that the paintball business insurance won't allow you to use paint that wasn't purchased at the field. They could just be saying that to keep selling paint. I have considered offering to pay a higher field fee in order to use my own paint.
I mentioned that this isn't true in my previous post, but I wanted to add that you shouldn't be surprised if they don't accept a higher fee for byop. Paintball businesses live or die based on paint quantity. Distributors offer discounts on every other product to retailers who order large quantities of paint. If a field can move a full skid on a regular basis, it makes staying in business much easier.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:28 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Try talking to you local field about providing the paint you want. This way they still get the income and you are still supporting the local filed that brings new people into our sport.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:28 AM   #9 (permalink)
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The only problem with the paintball club idea is getting the players. If your area is anything like mine, good luck.

This. I played on my parents’ land for years. Built a pipe field, chronoed, reffed, policed ourselves, no issues. My folks even spoke with their agent about their liability policy being sufficient and she shrugged it off and likened it to a private hunting club.

But even with safety and liability covered, getting people to play regularly was like pulling teeth. And then trusted players wanted to bring their cousin, brother, dad, and friends. Basically a whole group of newbies at once. Or they’d ask to play when we weren’t home. After a couple of No’s, people move on.
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Old 01-05-2019, 10:15 AM   #10 (permalink)
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So basicaly our law ball
Most fields around me are byop. Usualy as long as your bringing stuff that isn’t from Walmart they won’t hassel you.
That said I picked up 2 boxes of fresh valken graffiti from Davis paintball and it shot great the first day. A week later still shot beautifully two weeks after that it was flying a little off but not terrible. Could be me not takeing care of it or it could just be that paint isn’t made to last.
For clubs. You just need a Setday/s for olay with the field so you can garentee fresh paint.
As far as finding a field to let you play free good luck. I’m sure if your ordering a palate or 2 of paint directly thru the field they wouldn’t mind a discount but Definetly not free
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