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Generational Differences between Intimidators

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Old 08-13-2007, 02:57 PM   #1
lopez17
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Generational Differences between Intimidators

This is an addendum to a post I made on PBReview. There's often questions as to the differences between generations and such. Hopefully this helps clear up some of those questions.

1st Generation -

Classic, Ripper and prototype Texas Storm Intimidators – These were the first generation Bob Long Intimidators released in the 2000-01 time frame. Along with AKA, these were the first true Low Pressure markers. Being the first iteration, the Classics were very bulky and had a rather unique and tall grip frame and based on prior millennium bodies (this meant extra space at the end where the ram sleeve protruded which is covered by a distinctive decoration block). They also allowed some of the fastest firing speeds of all markers and were rather revolutionary in the features they incorporated. The classics utilized the same principles as an Impulse or Bushmaster but used a 4 way “Skinner” solenoid to control the air dispersion. They also incorporated “eyes” becoming one of the first markers with Anti Chop Mechanisms. These markers came stock with the Select Fire Board which allowed semi auto firing as well as burst and full auto modes, however these boards had a capped ROF in the low to mid teens (as did many other boards at this time).

Of this generation of markers, the most sought after were (and still are) the Rippers. These were intricately milled masterpieces that Intimidator owners still drool over nearly 5 years later. There were 3 subtle but distinct milling styles of Rippers all done in VERY limited colors/anodizing schemes. The three milling styles were the prototype style that has milling under the barrel tube and a less defined/milled back area (I’ve only ever seen this in a black-lime green fade). Then there’s the prototype style with the milling under the barrel tube and the full milled body. The last is the common Ripper that’s fully milled and lacks the milling under the barrel tube. Per many of the posts by people in the know, there were less than 250 Rippers ever made.

2nd Generation –

2K2, GZ, Dragon, Z, ECX, Species, Lasoya, Texas Storm, Shocktech, and Ironman Intimidators. The Second Generation is also known by many as the 2K2 line as they were released in 2002 and had a widely popular 2K2 model. I’m also including the GZ’s in this model as their internals and overall design fits better here than with the Classics.

Bob took some time after designing the Classic to improve upon his initial model. He got rid of the dual regs (and added a torpedo, High Pressure, regulator), shortened the grip frame into the popular clamshell grip (or the 45 in the case of the GZ). He also continued his improvements in milling and put out some intricately milled pieces of art (props to Ripper Machinist for many of these designs). Another redesign from the classics is the change in the bodies eliminating the need for the decoration block. These markers came with Humphrey’s solenoids which is a departure from the Skinner noids in the classics. The Humphrey’s noids operate at a stock dwell of 8ms as opposed to 16 for the Skinner noids.

He redesigned the trigger and guard a bit and included delrin bolts to make for smoother firing. Bob also corrected some problems later in this generation that were apparent with the early GZ and 2K2 releases…namely the need for a clamping feedneck and a better board than the Semi-Only Board (which came stock in many early markers of this generation.) The Dragons and 2K2’s in particular came with a high rise, non-clamping feedneck. The early 2K2’s (including most of the dust fades) came stock with SOB’s.

The real improvement in this series is the incorporation of Wicked Air Sports Equalizer boards. The WAS boards were widely popular and sought after as an aftermarket addition. At the time WAS boards were leaps and bounds ahead of the SFB and SOB’s. Bob just added in what the customers were already using. Towards the end of this generation in 2004, Bob started incorporating his Frenzy Boards into the 2K2 model intimidators. This happened after a falling out with Jim Drew. Internally, this generation of markers was almost identical to the Classics, utilizing a ram/poppet design. With additional trigger and switch adjustments coupled with more sensitive boards/electronics, the 2K2 generation was a HUGE hit and these markers were sold from 2002 until 2004 with an overlap of sales into the 3rd Generation of Markers. Quite a few of the top teams in paintball used Bob Long markers.

3rd Generation –

Alias, Empire, Dark, Naughty Dogs, Russian Legion, Atomix, Ripper 2, Ripper 2.5, Alias Shocktech, Redesigned Lasoya and Dragon and 2K5’s. This generation was a complete redesign from the 2nd Generation and was a much anticipated release in late 2003. Whereas the bodies remained relatively unchanged between the 1st and 2nd generations, the Alias Generation incorporated smaller eye covers, smaller overall body lengths, redesigned grip frames with the LCD screens in the grip as opposed to above it. They also incorporated a better, faster solenoid, bumperless RAM and in some cases adjustable RAM caps. In this generation Bob included the Frenzy Board as the standard board. The stock triggers are lighter in this generation and much like the 1st and 2nd Generations, the 3rd generation has some extreme milling designs. Bob also went back and resdesigned two very popular markers namely the Lasoya and the Dragon Intimidators. They are being released with some tweaks and with the new grip frame. These markers have better internals and cycle faster than the previous generation. This is mainly due to a newer style of Humphrey’s solenoid.

Another popular upgrade was the widescale release of various types of 2K5 gripframes. The LPR also incorporates a smaller piston. The LPR block is designed for higher airflow and no longer requires the need of an external volumizer. The 3rd Generation markers make use of shorter delrin bolts. These bolts also have detent slots already milled into them. These markers have been sold in various runs from 2003 to present and have proven to be the most popular and consistent markers on the market to date.

The Empire Intimidator (and to an extent the 2K5 Intimidator) were a unique release. The Empire has a body that uses a 2nd generation bolt, however it comes with a unique poppet that incorporates the poppet and cup seal and was able to be retrofitted on existing 2nd generation markers. These markers also have a unique front block that incorporates many of the best practices of the Alias yet fit on to older markers. The Empire and also the 2K5 also use 3rd generation wiring and come stock with 3rd generation style grip frames. In the case of the Empire this was a highly desirable integrated snatch grip frame with finger grooves built into the design. The 2K5 essentially incorporates a 2K2 milling pattern with 2K5 electronics. In some cases these markers came with boards containing dipswitches, in others they came with Frenzy 116 or 127 boards.

4th Generation –
Infamous, Empire 2, Ripper 3 Released in 2005 this was yet another redesign of the Intimidator line. Bob completely redid the body and frames to correct some perceived design flaws or deficiencies. The first upgrade was the LPR. Early models were often hard to remove or get into due to their slick design. This generation utilizes LPR caps that are grooved for easy removal. The ram cap is fully adjustable and screwed on to the sleeve instead of into it. The ram is also milled out more. The 4th generation markers utilize 4th generation wiring and boards as well as Alias style LPR blocks and the ubiquitous torpedo regulator. Due to a shorter body, 4th gens come with a different style bolt as well. Bob has also maximized the space in the trigger guard and included top of the line triggers with these markers. Some versions also come with an integrated rail designed into the grip frame.

Perhaps the most revolutionary upgrade in this generation is the inclusion of the “pressure balanced” poppet. This revolutionary design enables the users to lower their LPR pressure far below what previous intimidators could execute effectively at. This design was not without problems however and Bob and the BLAST team have issued several different poppets to correct flaws with previous designs. The current design is a brass poppet with 3 o-rings and a smaller, tighter poppet spring. These markers require tighter seals and mandate the use of Dow 55 to swell o-rings and effectively hold the seal.

The 4th generation markers are characterized by sharp curves and angles that make a very sharp, very tight, extreme looking marker. The balanced valve produces a marker with the precision and high ROF that Bob is known for and at the same time minimizes any kick.
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Old 08-13-2007, 02:58 PM   #2
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5th Generation -
Vice, Protege -- From a post I made on PBN

Essentially the Gen5's (Protege, Vice) are a total redesign of the Intimidator series. They take the best parts of the earlier versions and incorporate some significant changes that highly improve the performance of the marker while ensuring that the marker only requires a minimal amount of proactive maintenance.

The gripframe and bodies are both redesigned. The clamshell has been done away with and Bob has opted for a Marq style frame. The solenoid is mounted and the hoses routed through a milled body.

The frame and body mount ensuring a tight seal. As a result of the internal cavity there is no longer a need for a front block so the LPR is mounted directly into the body. The torpedo reg has also had a redesign with shims replacing the spring and a slight change to the piston as well. The bolt is a bit shorter and comes with a pillow. The markers use one real wiring harness (two if you RF it) and incorporate a Tadao M8 (LED) Ryujin board as the stock board.

The nice thing is that maintenance is a dream. The removable parts are all easily extractable using an allen wrench. The poppet is easy to get to as well. The Ram is similar to older Intimidators and is extractable through the rear of the marker. Vice's and Protege's also no longer require an adjustable ram cap for the appropriate positioning in the breach. Bob has corrected this.

Both markers incorporate 4C eye technology and while they come with 2 eyes stock, both are capable of utilizing the upgraded eyes. The stock M8 board also reads the eyes and fully utilizes them. The detents are Marq style detents (Plastic nubs with springs behind them) meaning you won't have to replace rubber detents over time as you did with Gen1-4 Intimidators. Cycle speeds are quite high. If RF'ing the marker if your thing, there's also a slot just off the board, in the gripframe, that's milled to accomodate easy positioning of the RF chip for Magna's, Pulses, Prophecies, etc.

Misc Private Label Markers
Nor-Cal, Ripper 1.xx, Flame Timmy, Hellwood, Rendition Alias

While this covers many intimidators, there are also some really nice looking prototype Ripper markers (pre Ripper 2/2.5’s), 2nd and 3rd generation markers that were made to test milling patterns or done as custom jobs for teams. These aren’t models made for wide public release but incorporate many features of their generation or have parts from several generations. These markers may command a high price and are usually only available from private parties or through BST or Ebay.

Now all this being said….what does this mean??

In terms of Intimidators, all the generations (except the 5th Generation) have two things in common…they’re easily retrofitted and incredibly fast. One of the things that Bob has done very well is make it easy to incorporate the newer, faster components into the older models. This includes reg housings, RAMs, feednecks, and circuit boards (among other things). With some additions, even the older models will fire as fast and perform equally well. In many cases differences are barely noticeable. Within a generation, the only difference you’re likely to notice is milling. The internals are the same and all things being equal the marker will perform the same.

Even with the newer models some folks prefer the older features such as the dual regs. Other aftermarket parts span generations such as Techna Triggers and WAS Switches or Eyes. Many board manufacturers have gotten into the act and Intimidator owners have several top notch options including the extremely popular Tadao board.


Which markers came with what boards?

Classic Generation – Came with either the Select Fire or Semi-Only Boards. (Both boards are capped in the ball park of 12-14 bps)

2nd Generation – Early 2K2 and GZ’s came with SOB’s. Later models came with WAS boards. 2K2 style intimidators released in 2004 came with Frenzy boards (110, 113 or 127). WAS boards aren't capped but early models have issues with lost trigger events. The Equalizers were also the first boards to enable the user to adjust his debounce and take away (or add) bounce to a marker. Early Frenzy boards have issues with excessive trigger bounce.

3rd Generation – Frenzy Board (either 110, 116 or 127). Early Frenzy boards have issues with excessive trigger bounce and have a debounce and mbounce setting to add or eliminate bounce.

4th Generation – Frenzy Board (either Infamous or Empire 1.5 boards).

5th Generation - Frenzy 3.0 (Protege) Tadao M8 Ryujin or Tadao M8 Board (Yes, there is a difference, though the non-Ryujin M8 has been upgraded to resemble the Ryujin per the instructions in some Vice markers).

What's still needed after I buy one of these machine guns?
One of the things that Bob has done too well perhaps is that these markers easily outshoot all but the fastest loaders. As a result, most players have taken to shooting Empire Reloader B's or Halo B's. These loaders put lots of tension on the ball stack to enable the balls to feed as fast as the intimidators can shoot. The only problem with this is that it can cause chopping issues in intimdators as Bob has stock detents that are too soft and enable double feeds. To solve this most people have purchased harder detents or a set of magnetic detents like those available from Kila.

In some cases (more prevalent in the earlier 2K2, classic and some 3rd generation markers) an Adjustable RAM cap is also needed to ensure the balls are falling into the breach with no play between the eyes, detents and bolt. These two upgrades will enable most intimidators to shoot ropes of paint.

Aftermarket parts such as varying styles of clamping feednecks, snatch grips, triggers (with Techna being the overwhelming favorite despite a 6-12 month wait), laser eyes, upgraded regs are also highly popular. Intimidators, being top notch, highly popular markers have an abundance of aftermarket upgrade parts available. This enables owners to create a marker unique to their playing style.
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Last edited by lopez17; 02-24-2009 at 08:38 PM.
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:58 PM   #3
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sick post
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Old 02-13-2009, 04:02 PM   #4
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I never noticed this post before... this thing is awesome, but where is the update on the Gen 5 intimidator?!
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