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Old 02-14-2013, 07:54 PM   #31 (permalink)
Mad Science of Paintball
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Join Date: Jul 2011

I've also got a VM-Magnum in the shop (customer job) but we have no idea when it was originally purchased. The serial number is D947XXXXX- yes, I'm sure that's a capital D and not a zero or an O.

I can believe the '94 (X94XXXetc.) but no idea what the D means. April, maybe? (fourth letter/fourth month? I know some car manufacturers had VIN and engine codes like that back in the musclecar days...)

On the other hand, my original VM, that I bought well-used back in '93 or so, is roll-marked (as opposed to the later dot-matrix stamping) P099631. The VM (or rather the PMI-III) came out in what, late '89 or early '90? Something like that. If this one was bought in '91 or '92, I'm not sure I can quite believe that even a reasonably sized company like Benjamin-Sheridan could produce 100,000 VMs in two or three years.

To say nothing of selling them- yeah, the sport was growing like gangbusters at the time, and the VM was one of the very first true semiautos to hit the streets, but it was still very much a small, niche sport. 100K VMs in just a few years?

Same thing on the Mirage; no way they made 960,000 Mirages, but 96XXXX could very easily be the production year. So chances are you have #403 made that year.

But, to go in with the excellent idea of comparing serial numbers, I gave a quick glance at a few markers I had laying close at hand:

ICD Freestyle (1st gen) 40104. Again, I tend to doubt that ICD made 40,000 Freestyles in the first run (not impossible, but I don't think it's likely.) They did, however, if memory serves come out in 2004, so that could easily be #104 made in 2004. Anybody got a second-gen they can check the number on?

And if that's true, I also have Freestyle #11.

TT Tribal Mephisto: 3576. The Tribal came out in something like '99-ish and was only produced for less than a year (again, if I'm remembering correctly) so none of those numbers really correlate to a date. But I can easily see a production run of over 3,500.

Doc's Machine. Fixing, fiddling and transmogrifying markers since 1998.
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