This is one I’ve been waiting to post for a while. HipboyScott from the MilSimEmpire forums outdid himself on this build. Hell, he outdid just about every Milsim paintball modder ever when he built this thing.
What you’re looking at is an M-14 EBR built around a TPX core. Hipboy bought the pistol bits from TippmannParts.com, selecting only what he needed. The most important ones being the mini-regulator, trigger valve and the breech which is threaded for A-5 barrels and is milled to accept magazines already.
Hit the break to read more, and see the full gallery of his photos.
The use of the TPX internals is a stroke of brilliance. They really do offer an incredible modding platform, considering the size and cost. I believe he intended to sell these as made-to-order customs, but the interest wasn’t there at the price it would necessitate. To build each gun, Hipboy had to buy a brand new high-end Airsoft gun and discard the guts, and that doesn’t come cheap. In fact, the MSRP for the Classic Army EBR he used was over $400 alone.
Here’s a quote from Hipboy’s introductory post, where he lays out what he wants to accomplish:
There are a number of airsoft guns available on the market today which more closely approximate the construction methods of real firearms. The options available to an airsoft player for an affordable but quality rifle is growing tremendously. Meanwhile, there are now paintball guns which are affordable and are not restricted to the scale dictated by traditional blowbacks. As an example, the vale mechanism of a TPX is extremely compact at 3.5 inches long and 1.125 inches in diameter. The regulator is, unlike with an Automag or T8, [not] fixed in relation to the rest of the valve. The breech unit is a simple box which can be retained or replaced as needed so long as the proper spacing is kept. This type of design provides tremendous potential.
As he progressed, Hipboy could reveal more about how things were coming together:
For this mod, I took the elements out of their stock arrangement and arranged everything to fit within the upper receiver of the M14. For example I used an aluminum tube between the breech and the valve to act as a spacer and dust-cover for the bolt, essentially turning the fake airsoft receiver into a defacto real receiver for the new paintgun. I positioned the regulator behind the valve instead of below. I used microline to run air from the fittings to the various components, so that the systems can be more freely placed as needed inside the marker, I’m not limited to just the configuration Tippmann gave me. I mean there’s only so much to adjust; there’s basically just the breech, valve-train, and the reg, but the orientations of those items can now be more freely manipulated so I could have side feed, bottom feed, top feed, air coming from the top, bottom, back, front, etc… That’s essentially why the TPX is my marker of choice for this kind of work.
The Milsig mags look much more at home on this M14 than they do on the pseudo-AR-15 clones that have been popularized due to paintball’s less-lethal applications. Check out how he carved out the magwell and used a faithful mag release instead of cloning the Milsig one. Hopefully we’ll see major manufacturers jump on board and build milsim gear worth owning. (Now’s your queue, Tippmann!) A little variety is nice, and a core like the TPX valve could be applied to so many more platforms.
What makes this build even more impressive is that it was done with handtools!
And one thing I’d like to mention is that right now, I’m just working at home and I don’t have access to all of the fancy equipment that I’ve been exposed to. This entire project was done with hand-tools, epoxy, and a workbench. Hand-files, a hacksaw, a hand-drill and a dremel are the main tools I used.
It pains me that there doesn’t seem to be a shooting video out there. If I dig one up, I’ll update here for sure!