In this thread, I will post a review of the Battle Stikxx, of the many Rifled barrels made by Hammerhead. My intention in this review is to simply give you all that I have observed in the last 3 weeks of testing. Please take note that I am not here to cut-down any other barrels out there and have respect for everyone's personal preference. I will simply provide you the facts for the sole purpose of you making a good decision when the day comes that you want a better barrel.
A couple of months back I began to ask questions about the Hammerhead Barrel System. It made sense to me when I first heard about it and learned how worked that a rotating paintball would be more accurate vs. a paintball being shot with out rotation. But being that paintball is a fairly expensive sport and I'm not made of money, I didn't want to buy another barrel that was expensive, advertised (like every other barrel) to be accurate, and in the end took endless tweaking to get balls shooting straight Ėbut not super accurate. Receiving positive feedback from Rembrandt, Little Ho, and jhardy66 concerning the Hammerhead, I figured that it was worth a try and being at the time I managed to get a couple things sold and I had the money to go for it.
So I got a hold of Robert Judson with Hammerhead and asked about the barrels and how they worked. Even while hearing good things, I was very skeptical about buying something that was advertised and said to be very accurate when almost every barrel on the market is advertised that way. One thing that impressed me was that I spent about 20 minutes on the phone with Robert as he walked me through how the barrel worked and what it should do that other barrels would not. It made sense to me and I was pretty sure that it would work, but still, I had to try to believe it. I thought that the 12in. Battle Stikxx would be a good barrel to start with so I got a Hammerhead kit containing one 12in. Battle Stikxx barrel, 5 fins (bore seizers), Lithium Grease Paint, and a stainless steel Hammerhead bore sizing kit. Off the bat, I was impressed with how important the matching of paint to barrel was along with the rifled inside of the barrel. Another thing I noticed was the the threading for the bore seizers were extremely tight. I asked Robert what the purpose of the threading was, he said that it was twice as small as regular aluminum bore sizing kits and that it matches the bore to the barrel better giving it an almost perfect match which would add increased accuracy
On Saturday, January 28th, I went with Pain-Cell to Saluda Paintball located in Honae Path. There, I extensively tested the accuracy of the barrel. Saluda Paintball was based right next to the Saluda River. The Saluda River had targets like rocks and trees that were as far as 200+ feet. In shooting the Hammerhead using a VF-Tactical Auto-Cocker with a Qloader and shooting Engage and Nightmare paint I was able to accurately hit rocks no less than 200 ft. with almost perfect accuracy. When shooting at the targets, the paintballs were hitting the splats made on the targets, this continued as long as I was shooting with the exception of a few rounds. The shot grouping was incredibly tight. I was completely astounded when I participated in a speedball tournament with 2 friends and was able to shoot 5 rounds and 3 of them hit my opponent just barely sticking out of a bunker. Spyderman, a member of Carolina Pain was helpful in helping me test this barrel. He assisted me as I walked 150-175 ft. away from him and allowed him to shoot me with the hammerhead to see for my self just how accurate it was. He shot 15 rounds at me with 7 rounds hitting me with the other rounds missing by inches -infact, I did move my stance a little to avoid getting hit so technically I should have been hit closer to 11 times. He then broke a paintball inside of the barrel and continued to fire in order to test the "self-cleaning" feature. The rounds were very inaccurate and few came close to me. Later on it was argued that nightmare and engage had very thick paint.
I also used my Auto-Cocker pump with the Hammerhead and compared it with my 16in. old school Freak Parts barrel which was accurate and quiet. The Hammerhead was just as accurate with the pump as it was with the VF-Tactical but was loud in comparison to the Freak Parts barrel. But I soon learned later that reverse porting of the Hammerhead diverts the noise to the shooter and is quieter when your getting shot at. The accuracy of the Freak Parts barrel did not come to be as accurate as the Hammerhead. The extended distance that the hammerhead gave clearly outmatched the Freak Parts.
I tested the Hammerhead in rainy weather for 2 days. Testing in rainy weather, the Hammerhead did well, the self-cleaning in the barrel took care of water inside; it didn't disrupt its performance in accuracy and distance. Remembering the keep the barrel down helps a lot when playing in the rain. Windy weather did not affect the performance of the Hammerhead considerably, but it did make the paint fly a bit to the side. The Quality of paint is not as important as I thought it would be. I shot Draxus, Engage, Nightmare, Marbalizer, PMI, and even Wal-Mart paint and all shot well with the Hammerhead. When it comes to chopping a ball, Iíve found that it mainly depends on what kind of paint you using, if it is thick paint, you will have trouble self-cleaning the barrel and will probably need a swab, if you have thin paint, it is easier to self-clean with a few shots and your back to normal.
One thing that did get my attention is that as a result of the paint rotating through the air, it makes a very intimidating swooshing sound as it flies past your head. At first I thought that the gun was shooting hot when Spyderman was shooting at me, but it turns out that as the ball rotates, it creates a tornado like cone that drags behind it. Itís almost the same idea as a bullet. The science of the barrel with its function and the way the air is reacting to the paintball as it leaves the barrel the air is swooshing as the paintball travels through the air. Also, one thing that Iíve learned about the hammerhead is that it is a very unique barrel. As such, it has been made to fire paintballs no higher than 385fps. Any higher and the paintballs would break. This is not a bad thing, being that at 280fps. The ball goes farther and straighter than a normal aluminum barrel would.
After testing the barrel out for 4 play-days and 5 shooting days, I overall consider this barrel to be superior in accuracy and distance combined when compared to any other barrel system. Itís accuracy is superb and the paint goes straight on. Being a newly born pump player, accuracy is one of the most important things to have and the Hammerhead is the best that I have used. For accuracy I give the Hammerhead a 10 out of 10 The Hammerhead is not the quietest out there but is not the loudest either. For noise, I give Hammerhead a 8 out of 10. Self-Cleaning again, depends on your paint. For self-cleaning I give the Hammerhead a 6 out of 10.
After using this barrel, Itís become my favorite. It has rarely chopped for me in using Draxus, Marbalizer, Engage, Nightmare, PMI, and even Wal-Mart paints and has served me well on the field. I highly recommend this barrel to anyone whoís main desire for their marker is to have accuracy.
For more information pertaining to the Hammerhead Barrels feel free to visit their site.
If you have any comments/complaints/recommendations/additions/subtractions go ahead and place them here.
Ben 'Steers' Bowens
Captain of Team Ballbusters
Sponsored by Qloader
This post has been edited by steers: 09 February 2006 - 03:01 PM