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 Whats the difference between high, mid and low end markers..

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Posts : 90
Join date : 2009-07-08
Location : War-Zone City

PostSubject: Whats the difference between high, mid and low end markers..   Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:16 am

This is an attempt to explain the different internals and also what
differentiates the low-end, the mid-end, and the high-end markers. It
can also help you understand exactly how your marker operates. Keep in
mind this is going to be very technical, so be prepared.

Poppet Valve
Valves are basically a rubber seal held in place by a spring. They are
opened by either a rammer striking it and opening it, or being pulled
open. In paintball, we typically see the former. Most poppet valve
designs are actually based off of the Spyder, seen below:

basic design is typically referred to as a stacked tube "blowback"
poppet. The bolt and ram are connected with a pin, and the ram is
cycled backward and forward. At rest, the spring is compressed. When
the trigger is pulled, a sear releases the rammer allowing the spring
to move the rammer and bolt forward. At the end of the forward stroke,
not only has the ball been sealed in the breech, but also the rammer
strikes the poppet valve opening the airways not only to propel the
ball forward, but also to push the rammer back to rest. While the
rammer is returning to its resting position, it brings the bolt back
with it. In this original Spyder design, the mechanisms used to cycle
the rammer and hold it in place are 100% mechanical.

This changes in Dangerous Power's Fusion design, seen below:
Reduced: 64% of original size [ 998 x 393 ] - Click to view full image

moving red dots represent a spring in this diagram. You can see them
being compressed to the right of the rammer (the rammer is green). This
design is referred to as a FASOR design: forward air, spring operated
return. Although this is still an electro, the solenoid only needs to
direct air to one spot: behind the rammer. This air propels the rammer
forward which then opens the poppet firing the ball. The spring which
has been compressed during the forward movement then returns the rammer
to its original position. Because air only needs to be directed to one
spot, this marker makes use of a one-way solenoid. The use of a spring
means a cheaper cost, but increased NVH (noise vibration harshness) and
it can lead to more kick.

This is different from the
Intimidator/Ego design seen below (note, this is an Ego. Intimidators
are extremely similar but have one minor difference that I don't think
is important enough to discuss)
Reduced: 87% of original size [ 734 x 268 ] - Click to view full image

you can see, in this design the ram is cycled solely by air and there
are no springs present. Also, the air is low pressured fed by an Low
Pressure Regulator (LPR), making it smoother, gentler on paint, and
more efficient. You'll also notice that the solenoid must direct air to
two different locations in this design. First the air propels the
rammer forward like the Fusion design, but there is no spring. Instead
the return mechanism is air directed to the other side of the rammer.
Because air needs to be directed to both sides of the rammer, a two-way
solenoid is needed. This means this marker is going to be more
expensive, but also higher performance since it will not require a
spring and therefore has less NVH and kick than the Fusion design.

the basic hierarchy of the Stacked Tube Poppet. Next are two completely
different and independent poppet designs. The first is the Marq series:

is an in-line poppet, similar to the Intimidator/Ego design, except it
has all been placed in the upper tube. This still requires a two-way
solenoid and an LPR, and there are no return springs present. Also,
since the rammer and bolt are in-line, there is greatly reduced kick to
this marker because there is no off-axis forces (don't worry about that
sentence if you didn't understand it. In short, in-line poppet = less
kick). However, you can see that the compressed air used to fire the
marker has area to expand before firing the ball, so this decreases
efficiency. Maintenance is also more difficult, as you can imagine.
However, the efficiency is still good and maintenance is very similar
to a spool-valve, and it is also smooth.

Then we have the
Invert Mini. I'm willing to bet that some of you will not be able to
understand the following diagram, but I'll do my best to explain it:
Reduced: 64% of original size [ 998 x 504 ] - Click to view full image

those red moving dots are a spring. This spring keeps the bolt held
back in place. This uses a one-way solenoid to move the bolt forward
against the spring. As you can see, when the bolt has moved forward all
the way, there is an opening connecting the air pushing the bolt
forward to the firing chamber. You'll see the purple air expand in both
directions when this opens up, both towards the ball and towards the
poppet. This opening I'm talking about is actually a spool-valve
incorporated into the design. The air, after pushing the bolt forward,
goes to the rear of the firing chamber, and then hits on the poppet.
While this air strikes the poppet on one side, you can see that the
pressure drops on the other side. This pull/push opens the poppet,
thereby firing the ball. Yes, in this case the air is the
rammer that opens the poppet. It's very strange, and I hope you can
follow that because it's not the easiest to explain. This is also an
in-line poppet. However, it uses a spring to return the marker to rest
and uses a one-way solenoid. This means that it will have increased NVH
and kick. Also, due to the way the air travels, it will not be as
efficient as any other poppet since it is also a spool-valve. Worse
even than the Marq. Also, maintenance is more difficult, however it's
still not bad.

**Spool Valves**
A spool-valve is a
valve design where the bolt opens up an air chamber when it moves
forward. The basic spool-valve design is the ProtoMatrixRail/Ion/Vibe
design. The Ion and Rail have virtually the same valve design, with the
rail having a weird extra feature that vents some excess air out the
back of the bolt while sealing the firing chamber (don't worry about
that). Here is the diagram:
Reduced: 66% of original size [ 960 x 200 ] - Click to view full image

you can see, there are no springs. Spool-valves are typically smoother
than Poppets, but less efficient and arguably harder to maintain due to
the increased amount of moving O-Rings. The air is constantly applied
to the rear of the chamber, with a one-way solenoid directing air to
the front. When firing, the solenoid cuts off air flow to the front of
the bolt. The constant air supply to the rear propels the bolt forward,
eventually opening up a passageway for the air in the rear to launch
the ball. The solenoid then re-applies the air to the front of the bolt
to return the marker to rest. There are three important aspects to this
design. First, there is no LPR. Second, it only requires a one-way
solenoid. Third, the air acting on the two sides of the bolt are
different from one another, or in other words this is an unbalanced
spool-valve. These are very cheap to produce due to the one-way
solenoid and lack of an LPR, yet are still very smooth with little NVH
because there are no springs present. However they aren't as efficient
or as smooth as the following designs because the valves are unbalanced
and, to some degree, there is no LPR. Also, the increased amount of
moving O-Rings in this design means that it is prone to bolt-stick, and
will be a bit harder to maintain.

This is the Threshold/G3/Rev-I design:

is very similar in principle to the Rail/Ion/Vibe design, but very
different in practice. As you can see, it still uses a one-way solenoid
holding the bolt back, there is no LPR, and the valve is still
unbalanced. However, as you can also see, the bolt is very simple, much
lighter, and it has fewer O-Rings. This means it is less prone to bolt
stick, it can be more efficient, has less kick, and is also a bit
easier to maintain. However, remember this is still cheap to produce
and unbalanced so there's still room for improvement.

The Matrix Design (Proto Matrix and Dye Matrix, this is NOT the PMR design. the PMR's design is the same as the Ion's design):
Reduced: 79% of original size [ 808 x 140 ] - Click to view full image

is similar to the Rail/Ion/Vibe design. However it has two major
differences. First, the air cycling the bolt back and forth are applied
to the exterior of the bolt in an even fashion by a two-way solenoid.
This means that unlike the previous designs, the Shocker is actually
balanced. It will be even smoother than the others. The second major
difference is that the firing chamber seals itself when the marker
fires. In all the previous designs, the firing chamber stayed open to
the HPR the entire time. In this design you can clearly see how the air
flow from the HPR is cut, or sealed during the firing cycle by those
two rear-most o-rings. This seal means that the HPR's recharge rate
does not effect the consistency of the marker at all. In other words,
these markers are more consistent. The Matrix design also makes use of
an LPR to cycle the bolt.

This is the Shocker/Luxe design:
Reduced: 72% of original size [ 878 x 413 ] - Click to view full image

you can see, very similar to the Matrix design. The valve is balanced
and fed by a two-way solenoid. However, where the Matrix's air was
input near the rear, the Shocker is fed from near the feedneck. This
does not use an LPR to cycle the bolt.
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Posts : 12
Join date : 2009-07-10

PostSubject: Re: Whats the difference between high, mid and low end markers..   Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:59 am

Very well put together info on all types of markers.
Thank you for the info
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