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Electronic Versus Mechanical Guns

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Electronic Versus Mechanical Paintball Guns
Electronic Versus Mechanical Guns
© 2007 David Muhlestein licensed to About.com, Inc.
You know you want a paintball gun, but you don't know for sure if you want to go mechanical or electronic. While both varieties will shoot paintballs, they do it in very different ways. Learning the differences and the advantages of each type will help you choose which gun is right for you.

Paintball Gun Basics

All paintball guns (or paintball markers) are designed to shoot paintballs at high speeds using compressed gas (either air or CO2). When a paintball gun fires, a small bolt pushes a ball into the paintball barrel and simultaneously sealing the ball in the barrel. A valve then releases compressed gas which expands in the barrel, forcing the ball out the end. The major difference between different guns is how the gun advances the ball into the barrel, seals off the barrel and releases gas into the barrel.

While there are many different ways that guns work, they can be divided into two major categories: mechanical and electronic. Simply put, mechanical guns are mechanically activated while electronic guns rely on battery power and a circuit board to fire. There are also electro-mechanical guns that are a hybrid of the two types.

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