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Old 10-13-2011, 10:41 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Dr. VonDeafingson View Post
If I was at school I would. Home taking online classes this quarter.
I am sure you could find his e-mail and send him the link. This forum does share in his legacy as it is all about the history of the sport. I am sure Dr Hensel could be considered one of the key figures in the history of paintball. He did invent the electro-pneumatic marker afterall.
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:12 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I'm on campus for a day. I asked his son about it. He said he'll email me with some more info and pictures next time he's home.
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:29 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm on campus for a day. I asked his son about it. He said he'll email me with some more info and pictures next time he's home.
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Old 10-14-2011, 03:42 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Sweet deal. Can't wait to see the updates.
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Old 10-16-2011, 11:13 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by HP_Lovecraft View Post
And PVI went out of business. The bank took everything, and sold it cheap at auction. Including intellectual property rights (ie patents, designs, etc). Here SP bought up the patent, design, equipment, etc. They went on to produce the SHocker 4x4. But the Shocker 4x4 was a grand failure. By now, far, far better guns have hit the market. ie Angel, Bushmaster, Tribal, even Rainmaker.
The US patents for the original PVI gun and the Rainmaker were issued by the same patent examiner four days apart from one another. Apparently the designs were distinct enough for the same guy to think they each deserved a patent.

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So used the PVI patent and revised it to be far more general, and then hit the entire competition with patent lawsuits. As we all know, most companies folded. Either paying royalties, or stopping production. All except WDP. They had the money to properly fight SP.
They didn't challenge brass eagle either... BE at the time spent more money on tournament sponsorship in a weekend than SP grossed in a year. You don't take that kind of money to court unless you're insane.

As to the whole invention of the solenoid operated paintball gun in the first place, it was really just a re-invention of work done two decades earlier by the US Navy, as many who followed the SP lawsuits debacle know of a US patent issued in 1973 for an electronic circuit controlled, solenoid operated compressed-air driven gun for firing dye filled projectiles (it was meant for a fairly large gun, used for gunnery training without the messy firing range requirements of things involving gunpowder).

Last edited by DeeEight; 10-16-2011 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 10-17-2011, 12:36 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by HP_Lovecraft View Post
To add to the story, he was the one who derailed the whole SP patent scam.

The short version was that SP hired PVI to design, and build an electronic gun. SP would be the distributor.

Neither party was happy with the arrangement, so PVI split to sell a newer version through other distributors. SP was not happy. So they told there dealer network they are not allowed to sell, or even talk with PVI. This was substantial because everyone sold SP barrels. They were huge back then.1

And PVI went out of business. The bank took everything, and sold it cheap at auction. Including intellectual property rights (ie patents, designs, etc). Here SP bought up the patent, design, equipment, etc. They went on to produce the SHocker 4x4. But the Shocker 4x4 was a grand failure. By now, far, far better guns have hit the market. ie Angel, Bushmaster, Tribal, even Rainmaker.

So used the PVI patent and revised it to be far more general, and then hit the entire competition with patent lawsuits. As we all know, most companies folded. Either paying royalties, or stopping production. All except WDP. They had the money to properly fight SP.2

And they discovered something interesting- PVI (and its bank) was only partial owner of the patent. PVI hired Professor Hensel to do the original design work. For payment, he was given part of the design rights. SP only bought the PVI "half". WDP quickly contacted Hensel, and managed to buy up the other half of the patent.

That crushed SP. From that point they were no longer able to sue over the electro patent. In court, the Judge even noted that SP claims were fairly suspecious to begin with as they were never involved in the research, design, and development stages.
Forgive me if I am wrong about this, but:

1: I was under the impression that how SP got PVI to bankrupt was that they placed an order so large that the PVI could not possibly build the number of markers requested, which resulted in a breach of contract. Because of the monies involved to pay SP for said breach, PVI went bankrupt and ultimately the banks sold everything. There wasn't a gap in the availability from the Shocker to the Shocker 4x4.

2: From what I have seen, the patent was changed over from PVI to the Gardners fairly quickly. They waited from when the patent changed over (I can't remember if it was 97 or 98) until 2004 to go after other companies that sold electro markers. That's anywhere between six and seven years, which I don't think, although I honestly don't know, that it takes that long to alter the patent enough to make it so broad as the patent is.
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:25 PM   #17 (permalink)
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1: I was under the impression that how SP got PVI to bankrupt was that they placed an order so large that the PVI could not possibly build the number of markers requested, which resulted in a breach of contract. Because of the monies involved to pay SP for said breach, PVI went bankrupt and ultimately the banks sold everything.
My understanding was that SP placed a large order, requiring PVI to leverage itself to fund materials and productions. SP cancelled its order before the markers were delivered, resulting in PVI's bankruptcy.

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2: From what I have seen, the patent was changed over from PVI to the Gardners fairly quickly. They waited from when the patent changed over (I can't remember if it was 97 or 98) until 2004 to go after other companies that sold electro markers. That's anywhere between six and seven years, which I don't think, although I honestly don't know, that it takes that long to alter the patent enough to make it so broad as the patent is.
SP made an attempt to "enlarge" its patent during that period, and in that application SP listed prior art that included the Navy's patent and Edelman's airgun design. This was rejected. The next application to enlarge omitted this prior art, and . . . surprise . . . it was allowed.

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Originally Posted by DeeEight View Post
The US patents for the original PVI gun and the Rainmaker were issued by the same patent examiner four days apart from one another. Apparently the designs were distinct enough for the same guy to think they each deserved a patent.
Ergo my belief that SP may have had an arguably valid claim for a patent on a two-solenoid marker but not for all electronically-activated marker operations.

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Old 10-19-2011, 12:57 AM   #18 (permalink)
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what exactly was the wgp part of all of this?
It's in the title.

expand my knowledge :]
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Old 10-19-2011, 01:06 AM   #19 (permalink)
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HP thanks for that post. Great info.
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:44 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by weerez935 View Post
what exactly was the wgp part of all of this?
It's in the title.

expand my knowledge :]
I think that it is a typo and should say WDP, since they were the one's to buy the patent from Dr. Hensel.
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