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Old 11-15-2013, 07:28 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Menace's first electro: help me pick a good one!

Gang,

After 23 years of pump and mech I'm finally thinking of making the jump to an electro. This is not a switch, just an addition to the roster. Also, this is not going to be the first of a collection. There will be only one, so I want it to be a good one. Solid, reliable, durable, simple, quality, etc.

Don't care what sort of engine it has, and within reason, don't care what year it is (probably nothing older than 8 or so years, though, unless there is good cause). Here's what I'm looking for:

1. Reliability. Shooting old mags and Tippys breeds little patience with markers that cannot be trusted to shoot paint day in and day out, with no fuss. I like to tinker, but only for fun. Tinkering out of necessity is inexcusable.

2. Durability. Something absolutely rugged, bulletproof, idiot proof, noobie proof. Something that could be a rental, but isn't. Wimpy, skimpy feedneck made of snowflake-thin aluminum? Delicately carved frame with the strength of rotten balsa wood? Over-machined, thin-walled body light enough for a kitten to use, and sturdy as a wisp of smoke? No thanks. I want a tank.

3. Longevity.
(a) Of mechanical parts. I have a mag that is 22 years old and still runs flawlessly with all its original working parts. Only the seals have been changed. I expect an electro to be able to do the same. Not only in terms of years, but in terms of cycles. A million shots over two plus decades should be a breeze.

(b) Of electronics. I'm suspicious of modern electronics, since they have a funny habit of working great for short periods of time, then dying for no apparent reason.

4. Long-term serviceability. Mags, Cockers and Tippies are great because the world is filled with spare parts. I don't want a marker that cannot be repaired one or two decades down the road. This includes boards, eyes, detents, solenoids, switches, etc. So rare breeds are not desirable. I want a market-saturated, dirt-common marker with readily available parts.

5. Simplicity. A marker shouldn't be a hassle to break down and maintain. Less is more, and better as well. Tool-less bolt out back is great.

6. Maturity. A marker should come out of the box completely ready to go. What's the saying about old mags and cockers? Mags came out of the box needing nothing, and cockers came out of the box needing nearly everything. I'm looking to play a lot, not pay a lot to upgrade a bunch of stuff just to make the thing function properly.

7. Eyes. Good, dependable, reliable, functional eyes easily serviced and replaced if need be for ages to come.

8. Efficiency. Probably everything will seem efficient compared to mags, but this goes also for batteries.

9. Good trigger. Not really into PSP-type stuff. Just semi, so a quality trigger is very important. I've handled a few and even in my ignorance can tell a universe of difference between triggers.

10 Good regulator. Consistent, fully serviceable, reliable, common seals and parts, etc.

11. Good clamping feedneck and good on/off ASA. These two aren't optional.

12. No need for LP input. Don't want to have to buy a separate tank, and thus increase the total cost of the package by that much.

13. Other? Anything else you think is worth noting that hasn't been mentioned.

Given these criteria, what are the top three choices (in order) you would recommend? I'm very ignorant in this area, so please list specific year, make and model if you would. Seems like some years of the same model are much more desirable than others, and as an ignoramus, I have no way to know this unless you tell me. And if you wouldn't mind, say a few words about each to explain why it's on your list. And don't worry about repetition. Every voice weighing in matters, even if it is to say the same thing as what the previous poster said.

My thanks!

EDIT: The list, as nominated by the good folk of MCB. If I've goofed any proper nomenclature, please feel free to correct:

01. 05-07 Macdev Cyborg +3
01a. Macdev Droid
02. Empire Axe/Mini +10
03. Smart Parts SP1 +1
04. Planet Eclipse Geo 2
05. Planet Eclipse Geo 3 +2
06. 07 Planet Eclipse Ego +2
07. 09 Planet Eclipse Ego SL94
08. Planet Eclipse Ego other +2
09. Planet Eclipse Etha
11. Planet Eclipse Etek +1
12. AGD E/X-mag +1
13. 2000 ICD Bushmaster
14. Spyder/Azodin-type stuff
15. 2006 Dye Matrix
16. 2009/10 Dye Matrix
17. Dye Matrix other
18. Alien Invasion
19. Karnivor/E-cocker
20. 2002/2005 Bob Long Intimidator/Alias +3
21. Bob Long Marq
22. Bob Long Vice
23. SP Ion
24. AKA Viking/Excal +1
25. Infinity Legend
26. Tippmann Crossover/XVR +4
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Last edited by Menace; 11-17-2013 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 11-15-2013, 08:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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07 cyborg comes to mind, checks a bunch of all the categories
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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An axe would fit the bill
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If you're playing in the woods I recommend the SP1. Been reliable for me, just needed a reg rebuild because it had sat so long but easy maintenance. Just lube the bolt and go
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Empire Axe. Cheap to service, all the parts are available, and it's market saturated. And it can take a beating, to an extent. No electro I've found is as durable as a mag, but axe's take quite the beating
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You left out a big category: PRICE

If you're willing to shell out a lot of money, then look no further than Planet Eclipse. They are the Tippmanns of the high-end world. The company has been around, in tournement paintball for almost 20 years. They KNOW how to make good guns. Not just high performing guns, but rock-solid reliable ones. And most of the parts are compatible across the years, so you don't have to worry about that.

Personally, I HIGHLY recommend the Geo3. I know you didn't say too much as far as performance goes, but this gun is ubelievably smooth. No kick whatsoever. While it doesn't have toolless disassembly, it is very easy to work on. Efficiency is fair (it'll do better than your mag, that's for sure). Good trigger, good reg, good stock barrel. It has everything you'd ever want on a high end.

If you want beter efficiency and even more duability, the Ego is a great way to go. It'll have more kick, just by the nature of being a poppit. Hasall the same parts as the Geo, just in a poppit not a spool. Still easy to take apart and service. Personally I prefer the Geo just because of the difference in kick.

If new isn't your thing, then just get used Ego. 07's are the most popular. And they can be had for pretty cheap.
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If your a woodsball player and like to play the stealth role, stay away from Planet Eclipse, they are ungodly loud, like a an automag with a short barrel loud. Also, the SP-1 is a good choice on the cheap, but make sure you remove the battery after playing as the solenoids tend to bleed them even in the off position. I second the Axe or even a Mini for that matter, with the simple change of a bolt and an under-bored barrel, mine gets approx 13 pods off a 68/4500. Plus Empire stands behind everything they sell if you ever have an issue. The board is easy to navigate, I have had mine since Aug 2012 and play at least once a month and haven't had a single issue with it ever. I dount you'll ever find an electro as durable as a Mag/Tippmann, but if you service it well, it should last you for quite some time. Solenoids do have a tendency to fail, but mine hasn't yet.
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:07 PM   #8 (permalink)
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NO. Just no, Menace. I will not stand for this.

Edit: Okay, to be at least a little constructive, I have a bunch of teammates who swear by PE. Geo, Ego, Etek, Etha, doesn't matter, they've (7 or 8 different people) have had nothing but positive experiences, and swear by their respective markers (2-3 Etha's, 2 Eteks, an SL94, a Geo2, might have missed one or two...). On the other side of the equation, two teammates have had nothing but problems with Proto (1 Rail, 1 SLG, I think), and a couple of Minis, but in fairness, they were fairly early Minis, so maybe the later ones and the Axe are more reliable.
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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If I were to own an electro, it would probably be a Mini/Axe. The platform is fairly common since it's used in multiple production markers. I've seen Mini's actually used as rentals.

#10 is the iffy one; I haven't delved into the regulator yet.

Probably my biggest beef with them is that they're not particularly easy to modify, i.e. making a proper q-loaded warp-left mini would be kind of a big deal.
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Menace's first electro: help me pick a good one!

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Originally Posted by DamoNAN View Post
Also, the SP-1 is a good choice on the cheap, but make sure you remove the battery after playing as the solenoids tend to bleed them even in the off position
I've only seen that with the blackheart. Does the stock board do that too?
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