Special Ops Paintball: Tippmann/SO Ultralight 7 Pants - Special Ops Paintball

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Tippmann/SO Ultralight 7 Pants High hopes dashed

#1 User is offline   Ping the Vile 

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Posted 12 January 2008 - 03:27 PM

I got my Omnipat Tippmann/SO Ultralight 7 pants a couple weeks ago but didn't try them on until recently. I have 2 pairs of the old version of ultralights and love them, so I figured that the new design features in the "version 7" pants would be great.

First let me say that the Omnipat pattern looks terrific. I'm psyched to try it out in the field

The first thing I noticed was that the version 7 is SIGNIFICANTLY smaller than the original version. I have size XL in both of my other pairs and they're perfectly baggy and roomy, giving me plenty of "bend and stretch" room. The version 7 pants barely fit me at all and they are WAY too tight for me to play paintball in. Even the leg area is much more narrow and would cause issues if I still wore my knee pads underneath like I used to. I'm going to have to exchange them for a 2XL, it seems, just to get a size that's similar to the originals.

The material the pants are made of seems slightly different as well. More stiff and scratchy and less "drapey." ...and that's not because of repeated washings. My brand new "old version" pants are perfect in that way. I'm not sure why the change was made. Maybe this new fabric holds the printed pattern better. Either way, it doesn't have quite the same nice feel as the old version, but it's not significant enough to be a huge deal. It's got the same "ventilated" hole pattern, so I'm sure it will be terrific in hot weather games just like the old pants are.

The idea of having a fly on the front of the pants seems like a great idea to me. It would make the occasional trip to the porta-john a little easier than the old version. It actually WOULD be a good idea if it weren't for the velcro closure that's used instead of a zipper. Actually, I don't know if it's even the velcro that's the issue, but the complete lack of any sort of fastener at the top of the fly at waistband level. Just performing the action of "hiking up" the pants causes the velcro to come loose at the waistband... even with the belt cinched tight. The pants definitely need a snap, a button, or a hook of some sort to keep them fastened.

The extra belt loops (there are 5) are a nice addition as well. The old version of the pants had 3 loops, which worked but not nearly as well as 5 will work. That's a great addition especially for folks who wear a tactical belt during play.

The cargo pockets are a wonderful addition and the little pull-tab on the pockets makes them easy to access. The front pockets have a small velcro pad to keep them closed which is also a nice feature. The idea falls apart when you get to the back pockets, though, because the velcro fastener is a strip that goes the entire way across the pocket, making them very difficult to get into, and I'm sure nearly impossible if you wear gloves when you play paintball (I do). An easy solution would be to give the back pockets a flap like the cargo pockets. Then the same small pad of velcro could be used instead of a full strip across the opening. Or just use a small pad, anyway, instead of the large strip.

The last design change is for the leg cuff closure. Instead of the traditional "string through the hem" tactic used by the old version and practically every design of BDU in existence, there is now a vertical velcro seam and a horizontal velcro tab and strip partway around the hem. I think the vertical seam is a great idea and will probably make it easier for folks to take boots off or put them on because it will be much easier to get the pants out of the way... kind of like a good pair of snow pants. The horizontal tab, however, takes the place of the traditional "string", which would be fine except you can't pull the cuffs tight. What that means is that debris and miscellaneous "stuff" from the playing field can get in (might not be a big deal for some folks), but it also means that it's REALLY easy for the pants to rise up your leg if you're doing any sort of crawling because there's nothing holding the cuffs down. I did see a post here where someone fixed the issue by threading his own string through the hem, so I guess I'm not the only one who has an issue with that.

The barrel swab pocket is still in place as in the old version, which is great. The reinforced knees are about the same, too, which is also great.

I was really excited about getting these pants and had even been thinking of "upgrading" my old SpecOps Digi pattern pants with the new version, however I ended up being very disappointed. Starting with the bad fit due to the difference in sizes between the versions, to the velcro fly, the virtually inaccessible back pockets, and the unclosable cuffs, the new version 7 pants seem to be the result of numerous bad design decisions.
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#2 User is offline   Tripwire 

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Posted 12 January 2008 - 07:32 PM

Great Review:

I am thinking of buying a set my self and I would have gone with the same size as my other two sets.
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#3 User is offline   Ping the Vile 

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Posted 12 January 2008 - 08:41 PM

FYI, Tripwire, the shirt seems to be perfect... same size, same design, etc. It was only the pants that were smaller. :-)
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#4 User is offline   russianfrontphotos 

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Posted 14 January 2008 - 09:52 PM

Yes I have the OmniPat Ultralites in size large. I have about a 35 waist and they fit pretty tight and I'm 5'10" and they are a touch long. Wasn't crazy about the velcro fly. Its a pain to take a leak. And the ankle cinch is not very good as you can't bring them in much. A better way would have been a stretch cord and toggle like my other paintball pants. But whatever I'll wear them all year long and see how they stand up.

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