Welcome to the new marker animations listing! Over the years I've attempted to organize markers into an easy classification method, but was never able to make a universal chart. There are simply too many overlapping designs; it's virtually impossible to create a single categorization system. To solve this problem, I've now created the giant listing below. An animation or diagram of each system is provided for visual purposes, then markers are described by the these variables:
1. How the bolt is controlled (mechanical [eg pump], balanced 4way triggering valve, unbalanced [eg blowforward], etc)
2. How the bolt is reset after firing (balanced 4way, blowback, spring return, etc)
3. Type of firing valve (spool valve bolt, or force-controlled poppet [FCP] that happens before or after bolt movement)
4. Type of air inlet restriction, if applicable (spool valve inlet, force-controlled poppet [FCP], or air constriction)
5. Sequence of firing movements, if applicable.
Remember! Markers often fit into multiple categories and many design aspects are borrowed from one-another. Some designs will fit within multiple categories, and some categories are subdivisions of others.
- Bolt positions: Most markers can be classified by the position of the bolt/breech when idle, called either open bolt or closed bolt.
- Open bolt: the marker breech and bolt are opened when idle, common with semiautomatic markers. To fire, the bolt advances the next-loaded ball into the barrel then releases air to fire it in one swift motion, afterwards the bolt opens up to accept the next round automatically. Examples: Tippmann A5/98; Eclipse Ego/Etek
- Closed bolt: the marker rests idle with a ball already advanced into the start of the barrel and its breech is in the forward/closed position. When firing, the loaded ball is immediately propelled, the bolt/breech opens to load the next round, and the bolt then closes to complete its cycle. This is more prominent with pump markers but also with some specialized types of semiautomatics (especially semiauto conversions of pump markers). Examples: CCI Phantom; WGP Autococker
- Boltless: these markers do not possess a bolt, thus they are technically neither open nor closed. However, the operation of these markers is more similar to closed bolt action, but the lack of bolt necessitates its own category. Examples: AirStar Nova; ICE Epic; Tippmann SMG60/SMG68
- Firing valve action:
- Hammer valve: Markers of this type use percussive force to open a spring-loaded pressure valve. Valves of this type are often actuated with a hammer or otherwise the forward momentum of the bolt itself.
- Spring-forward: These markers have a spring-loaded hammer which is held in the "cocked" position by a mechanical sear. To fire, the sear releases the hammer which allows it to strike the valve and release a burst of air. Spring-firing markers can be configured into closed-bolt pump markers, or blowback semiauto markers. Examples: PGP pistol; CCI Phantom; F4 Illustrator; Tippmann A5/98
- Balanced air forward/rearward: These markers replace the spring-forward movement and blowback motion with a two-way air piston. Markers of this type often share a very similar layout to open bolt blowbacks. Examples: Eclipse Ego/Etek; SP Impulse; BLAST Marq
- FASOR: acronym for Forward-Air [then] Spring Operated Return; These markers use a one-way air piston to move forward, then return to the idle position via spring. This can be configured as either open bolt pneumatic, or independent-firing closed bolt (see FCP). Examples: DP Fusion; Infinity Legend; Osiris/F5 Autococker
- Spool valve: These markers have their firing valve and bolt combined into one physical component. Sometimes the air inlet valve is also combined into the same component to create one single internal moving part, but sometimes the air inlet is controlled using a separate item (described as an FCP poppet on this page). Sometimes the air inlet isn't controlled by a valve at all, rather an inlet constriction, but shutoff valves are common with these markers.
- Balanced spool valve: the spool valve bolt forms a two-way air piston to allow forward/rearward movement, controlled using a directional valve (pneumatic valve or a solenoid valve). The only force exerted on the bolt is from its directional valve. Examples: SP Shocker SFT/NXT; Dye Matrix; MacDev Clone
- Blowforward: Dump chamber air expands behind the bolt, forcing it into the forward/firing position. All blowforwards ultimately release their pressure by way of spool valve action, although some use an FCP poppet to actuate the bolt. Examples: AGD Automag; SP Ion; DW Aedes
- Air sear: subcategory of blowforward markers that use air pressure to hold the bolt open, which is then vented to allow forward movement and firing. This is the pneumatic equivalent to a marker using a blowforward bolt normally held open via spring. Examples: DP G3/G4; Eclipse Geo; Proto Rail
- FCP valve: acronym for Force-Controlled Poppet; these are commonly called "poppet markers" but they do not use a spring-loaded valve to fire as with hammer-based designs. Instead, their valve is actuated by means of air pressure or other force applied to/from it. Generally the FCP poppet action occurs before or after the bolt movement, so it's described as sequential with a description of the order.
- Firing poppet controls bolt sequence: Examples: Eclipse Etha; Dye NT; WM Assault-80;
- Bolt controls firing poppet sequence: Examples: Empire Axe; BE Rainmaker;
- Independent bolt/poppet: This definition is rare because it requires two separate valves to fire, which restricts it to only a few marker designs in existance. Examples: SP Shocker Sport; MQ-valve Autococker
- Hammer valve: Markers of this type use percussive force to open a spring-loaded pressure valve. Valves of this type are often actuated with a hammer or otherwise the forward momentum of the bolt itself.
- Heldforward: I created this term as a way to describe closed bolt markers whose bolt is held in the closed position by air pressure, which is automatically vented out when firing. Pump markers and semi-converted closed bolt markers do not fall within this category. Examples: AirStar Nova; y0da900 Ion bolt; Legion Shocker concept
- Slave valve: a special FCP poppet controlled alongside yet independant of the firing action. In other words, the solenoid's air output is delivered to two separate parts of the firing assembly (FCP and bolt) which actuates the components independently from one-another. Example: TAS Zealot
- Switch valve: most markers actuate their firing mechanism using pressure from the marker's air source. Switch valves are an alternative system wherein the firing mechanism is fueled by air pressure stored within the marker's dump reservoir. This has been unofficially coined a switch valve because air that is used to propel the ball is switched and redirected to actuate the bolt when firing. Example: Lurker Paragon; J4 Torque
- Inlet constriction: air inlet to the marker's dump chamber isn't completely sealed during firing, rather it's merely constricted down to restrict leakage. This is contrasted to an FCP shutoff valve, which completely seals off inlet during firing. There are design reasons behind either design type. Examples: SP Impulse; Empire Axe
- Bladder reservoir: valves of this type have an internal dump chamber that changes volume when firing, unlike all other markers which operate with a fixed volume. These dump chambers enlarge when filled with air pressure, then constrict down to smaller volume when firing. Examples: Eclipse Geo2/Geo3; DM3 Slambolt
- Articulating barrel: These unique markers do not have a bolt; instead the entire barrel slides forward and backward to seal off the marker breech. Examples: AirStar Nova; Splatmaster
- An asterisk (*) denotes a characteristic that defies classification. In this situation I chose the closest description that satisfied the operation, and made the marker fit within the chart alongside similar designs. For instance, many markers are listed as "balanced" when they actually have a slight bias in some direction, but the similarities to other markers leave them classified together. There are many other instances of bizarre designs that defy organization.
- Concept: markers with this tag are usually theoretical products that were never produced, or were only prototyped in small numbers and never made it into production. I will list ANY animation or diagram so long as it can theoretically function, however you must remember that information will be very limited for concepts and prototypes because they haven't reached mass market.
Submissions: If you have any additional animations for a marker not listed here, point them out to me and I will gladly host them!
Pop-up problems? The animation has to FULLY LOAD before the pop-up window will appear. Some animations are large in size (2-3 MB) so they might take a few seconds to load. If you get tired of waiting, open the link in a new tab instead.
|Marker:||Firing assembly:||Animation:||Bolt actuation movement:||Firing valve:||Air inlet shutoff:||Sequential firing action:|
|Mechanical hammer/valve pump markers:|
|Sheridan||Animation||Mechanical pump (heldforward)||Hammer spring-firing valve||inlet constriction|
|Splatmaster (articulating barrel)||Animation|
|Mechanical hammer/valve semiautomatic markers:|
|Kingman Spyder||Animation||Unbalanced against sear||blowback bolt return||Hammer spring-firing valve||inlet constriction|
|Tippmann Prolite/Carbine/98/A-5 /X7/Salvo/AlphaBlack/Gryphon||Animation|
|Electronic hammer/valve markers:|
|WDP/APS Angel||Animation||Balanced bolt/piston air actuation forward/rearward||Hammer air electropneumatic valve||inlet constriction|
|Bob Long Intimidator||Animation|
|Bob Long G6R||Cutaway|
|Eclipse Ego LV1||Animation|
|SP 09 Impulse / JT Impulse||Diagram|
|Bob Long Marq/Onyx/Victory||Animation|
|Bob Long VCOM poppet||?|
|Vanguard Creed ARV||Diagram|
|SP Nerve||Animation fast|
|Air Challenger "265" concept|
|TAS Cobalt/Ruby concept||?|
|Axon concept||Animation fast|
|DP Fusion||Animation fast||Unbalanced air actuation forward - FASOR||FASOR spring return||Hammer FASOR valve||inlet constriction|
|DP Fusion FX||Animation|
|WGP Autococker / AP Sovereign||Animation||Balanced isolated bolt actuation (heldforward)||Hammer spring-firing valve||inlet constriction|
|WGP E-Blade Autococker|
|Evil Omen||Animation||Unbalanced heldforward||Spring bolt return||inlet constriction||Firing hammer controls bolt|
|ATS-AT||Animation||Unbalanced heldforward||Spring bolt return||inlet constriction||Sequential - bolt controls firing valve|
|BE Rainmaker||Animation||Balanced bolt/piston actuation forward/rearward||inlet constriction||Sequential - bolt controls firing valve|
|Tippmann SMG60/SMG68||Animation||Double action (no bolt)||inlet constriction|
|AKALMP Excalibur||Animation fast||Balanced isolated bolt actuation (heldforward)||Hammer air electropneumatic valve||inlet constriction||Dual-independant solenoids (firing first, then recocking)|
|Sandridge Firestorm Autococker||Animation||Balanced isolated bolt actuation (heldforward)||Hammer FASOR valve||Sequential FCP||Dual-independant solenoids (firing first, then recocking)|
|Balanced spool valve markers: (4-way bolt)|
|Smart Parts Shocker SFT/NXT||HE/NDZv3/EvolveULP bolt||Animation||balanced bolt actuation forward-rearward||spool valve bolt - balanced||spool valve bolt|
|Evolve v1/v2 bolt||Animation fast|
|Luxe 2.0 bolt||Animation|
|Air Challenger "264" concept||Animation fast|
|Exalt marker concept||Diagram|
|Lee Kirwan "Omega-II" concept||Animation fast|
|Smart Parts Shocker SFT/NXT||stock non-HE bolt||Animation fast||inlet constriction|
|Marmalade bolt concept||Diagram||Bladder reservoir*|
|Freeflow bolt||Diagram||Bladder reservoir*|
|Maelstrom-Ma concept||Animation fast||inlet constriction|
|MacDev Clone/VX/GT/GTi||Animation||Sequential FCP||Bolt controls poppet|
|TAS Zealot concept||Animation fast||Slave FCP valve||Solenoid controls both inlet and bolt|
|Gen-E Matrix / Dye DM3 Matrix||Animation fast||spool valve bolt|
|Dye DM/M2/ProtoMatrix||Fuse bolt||Animation|
|Blowforward markers: (air sear, 3-way bolt, etc)|
|Dye Matrix - slambolt||Animation||unbalanced blowforward||Air sear bolt return*||spool valve bolt - blowforward||Sequential FCP with bladder reservoir||Bolt controls poppet|
|Dangerous Power G3/G4/G5/iq||TFG bolt||unbalanced blowforward||Air sear bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||Bladder reservoir|
|stock bolts||Animation||inlet constriction|
|Dangerous Power G5||Animation|
|Dangerous Power Threshold||Animation|
|Eclipse Geo original||Animation|
|SP Ion/XE/Vibe/ Epiphany/EOS/ SP8/SP1||stock bolt & stock-replica bolts||Animation|
|bolt with dual tail o-rings||Animation|
|Orange Nano bolt||Animation|
|TechT L7 bolt||Animation|
|DW Hollowpoint bolt||Animation|
|Orange NanoExtreme bolt||Animation||Sequential FCP||Bolt controls poppet|
|ICD Freestyle FS8||Animation|
|ICD Freestyle||Animation||inlet constriction|
|SP Shocker RSX||Diagram|
|Hostile Creations Rogue||Animation||Unbalanced actuation forward||Air sear bolt return*||spool valve bolt - switch valve||spool valve bolt*|
|Proto Rail||Animation||unbalanced blowforward||Air sear bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||spool valve bolt|
|Proto Rail 2011 Reflex||Animation|
|SP Ion & Ion clone||SP spring valve concept||Diagram||unbalanced blowforward||Sequential FCP||Bolt controls inlet valve|
|Eclipse Geo+||Animation link||unbalanced blowforward||Slave FCP valve||Solenoid controls both inlet and bolt|
|Eclipse Geo2/Geo3||Animation||Bladder reservoir|
|Dye NT||Animation||unbalanced blowforward||Air sear bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward*||spool valve bolt||Firing valve controls bolt|
|Pixie concept||Animation fast||unbalanced blowforward||Air sear bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||spool valve bolt||Firing valve controls bolt|
|Shadowmachine concept||Animation fast||unbalanced actuation forward (FASOR)||Air spring bolt return (FASOR)||spool valve bolt - FASOR*||spool valve bolt|
|Bob Long Insight NG||Animation||Unbalanced blowforward*||Air sear bolt return||spool valve bolt||spool valve bolt|
|AGD Automag /Minimag/Exmag||E/X Mag with RT valve||Animation fast||Unbalanced blowforward||Spring bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||Sequential FCP||Mechanically-linked bolt & inlet|
|Pneumag modification||Animation fast|
|ICD Desert Fox||Diagram link|
|Deadlywind Aedes (mQ)||Animation fast||Unbalanced blowforward||Spring bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||inlet constriction||Firing poppet controls bolt|
|Hammerless poppet marker: (FCP, etc)|
|mQ-equipped electronic Autococker (E-Blade etc)||Animation||Balanced isolated bolt actuation (heldforward)||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||inlet constriction||Dual-independant solenoids (firing first, then recocking)|
|SP Shocker Sport||Animation||Balanced isolated bolt actuation (heldforward)||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||Sequential FCP||Firing valve controls inlet valve; dual-independent solenoids (firing first, then recocking)|
|PneuVentures Shocker||Diagram||Unbalanced actuation forward||Air spring bolt return|
|Husher Impulse concept||Animation link||99% balanced bolt actuation forward-rearward||spool valve bolt - balanced||spool valve bolt|
|J4 Torque||Animation||Unbalanced actuation forward||Air sear bolt return*||spool valve bolt - switch valve||spool valve bolt*||Spool valve bolt with spring inlet valve; air sear is the dump chamber|
|AirStar Nova (articulating barrel)||Animation fast||Unbalanced heldforward||Spring bolt return||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||Sequential FCP||Firing poppet controls bolt|
|AirStar SuperNova (articulating barrel)|
|Warmachine Assault-80||Articulating barrel version|
|Mayhem pistol concept||Diagram|
|ICE Epic||Animation||Unbalanced heldforward*||Spring trapdoor return||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||Sequential FCP||Mechanically-linked firing valve & inlet|
|Legion Shocker concept||Animation fast||Unbalanced heldforward||Air spring bolt return||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||Sequential FCP||Firing poppet controls bolt|
|SP Ion & Ion clone||y0da900 closed bolt mod||Animation|
|Thorpydo Plunger concept||Animation|
|Gnucleus concept||Animation fast|
|Icebreaker T-shirt launcher concept||Animation||Single action (no bolt)|
|Thumper-A concept||Animation fast||Unbalanced heldforward||Air spring bolt return||Sequential FCP (closed bolt)||spool valve bolt||Firing poppet controls bolt|
|Thumper-B concept||Animation fast|
|Warmachine Assault-80||Stationary barrel version||Animation fast||Unbalanced blowforward||Spring bolt return||Blowforward & Sequential FCP||Sequential FCP||Poppet controls bolt forward, then bolt controls poppet backward|
|Eclipse Etha||Animation||Unbalanced blowforward||Spring bolt return||spool valve bolt - blowforward||Sequential FCP||Inlet valve controls bolt|
|Tippmann X7 Phenom (Flexvalve)||Cutaway|
|Culex concept||Animation fast||Air spring bolt return|
|Lurker Paragon||Animation fast||Balanced bolt actuation forward-rearward*||spool valve bolt - switch valve||inlet constriction||Firing poppet controls bolt; solenoid fed using dump chamber air supply|
|Invert-Empire Mini||Animation fast||Unbalanced actuation forward||Spring bolt return||Sequential FCP||inlet constriction||Bolt controls firing poppet|
|Empire Axe||Animation fast|
|BT TM7, TM15||Animation|
|XXXI King Cobra||Animation|
|SP mqev "spoppet" concept||Animation fast||Balanced bolt actuation forward-rearward||Sequential FCP||spool valve bolt||Bolt controls firing poppet|
|Tippmann C3||Animation||Mechanical pump (heldforward)||Propane combustion valve||Sequential FCP*||Inlet valve is momentarilly-actuated by pump handle|
|Airbow gun||Single action (no bolt)||Air compression valve||inlet constriction*|
|DRV||Diagram||Double action (no bolt)||Hammer spring-firing valve||inlet constriction|
|E-volt concept||Animation||Unbalanced heldforward||Spring bolt return||Hammer spring-firing valve*||inlet constriction*||Firing pressure is created by a compression chamber during each shot|
|Tippmann Cyclone loader||Animation||Drive sprocket is actuated by blowback air pressure from the valve, then returned by a spring.|
|Dye Rotor loader||Animation link||A planetary gear set is used to increase torque on the drive sprocket|
|RAP4 M68 grenade launcher||Animation||Push-button dump valve.|
|Milsig Heat Core grenade launcher||Animation||Blowforward dump valve actuated by a small triggering pilot valve.|
|Floating poppet regulator||Animation fast||Simplified animation for a "floating poppet" piston-based regulator. Fluid enters the piston chamber and forces it to expand against the spring, allowing the valve to close.|
|Floating poppet diaphragm regulator||Animation fast||Simplified animation for a "floating poppet" diaphragm-based regulator. Fluid enters the diaphragm chamber and forces it to expand against the spring, allowing the valve to close.|
|Moving base regulator||Animation fast||Simplified animation for a "moving base" regulator. Fluid passes through the piston and forces it to expand against the spring, closing the valve.|
|Autococker "3-way" directional valve||Animation (non-sealed)||These two-position valves are actuated mechanically in order to control airflow through one of the two possible output ports.|
|Parker K-series solenoid||Animation fast||This "piloted" indirect solenoid valve combines a 4-way directional valve (spool) which is actuated by a miniature 2-way air pilot, controlled by the electromagnet. Other piloted solenoids work similarly.|
|Mac 43-series solenoid||Animation fast||This direct-acting solenoid valve has a 4-way directional spool linked directly to its electromagnet. Other direct-acting solenoids work similarly.|
|Shoebox compressor/intensifier||Animation fast||This is a pressure intensifier that boosts "shop air" input pressure (90-100 psi) up to HPA tank levels (3k-4.5k). The red release spring is the feedback mechanism; as the pressure increases, mechanical leverage causes it to eventually push against the on/off switch when tank pressure is achieved.|
|Freedom8 compressor/intensifier||Animation fast||The Freedom8 Shoebox is an upgraded version of the original design. Notably, it uses an adjustable pressure limit switch instead of the preset mechanical shutoff.|
|4C eye system||4C off animation||The 4C eyes monitor the ball dropping motion and allows the marker to initiate firing before the next ball is fully seated.|
|4C on animation|
|Chop animation||Animation fast||Demonstration of different types of paintball breaks in a marker. This was meant to highlight the difference between a ball being chopped and a ball breaking in the barrel.|
Updates: (reverse-chronological, newest-first)
2015.Nov.8 - Revised the terminology section by adding nested lists and more prominent examples of each type.
2015.Nov.6 - Added an animation for the AirStar Nova. I've also reinstated the "categories" used in the past. Maybe it'll help organize things. I also added prominent examples for some of the marker terminology definitions.
2015.Oct.25 - Added a few assorted animations meant to suppliment tech articles from other portions of the website. Of them is a set of simple regulator animations (both styles of regulator design) and an animation for a direct-acting Mac solenoid. I also made an animation of an Empire Axe to show some of the different internals compared to Minis.
2015.Mar.31 - Added an animation for the Milsig Heat Core, a grenade launching addon for other equipment.
2015.Feb.28 - Added the Alien Deception and Shocker RSX to the listings. Added animation links for a Tippmann Model98, Eclipse LV1, Ion Hollowpoint bolt, and MacDev Clone series. Also reclassified some markers by adding a new category of firing valve called the SWITCH VALVE, which is found in the following markers: J4 Torque, Lurker Paragon, Hostile Creations Rogue, and D3FY D3S. This firing method is sufficiently different as to create a new category in order to describe it.
2014.Sep.1 - Updated the animation for the Lurker Paragon, added a diagrams for the unreleased Mayhem pistol, and added an animation for an AEG airsoft gun that represents the unreleased E-volt marker.
2014.May.22 - Updated animations for both classic Shoebox and Freedom8 compressors (updated graphics and internal details). Also repaired a couple dead links to outside pages that weren't loading. All videos and youtube links now read as "animation link" which opens in a new window.
2014.May.18 - Added animations for the Freedom8 Shoebox compressor/intensifier.
2014.Apr.24 - Added an animation for an Ion with Orange NanoExtreme bolt, and a diagram for the Shocker SFT Marmalade bolt concept. Also fixed the link to the Shocker Freeflow bolt diagram. Revised the terminology descriptions at the top of the page.
2014.Mar.26 - Added animations for the following: ICD Freestyle FS8, DLX moving base type regulator, and TAS Zealot.
2014.Mar.7 - Added information for the Icebreaker concept and Lurker Paragon. Also, retro-actively added the updates section that you are currently reading.
2014.Feb.11 - Links to outside webpages have been fixed (the popup images interfered with them). Added the terminology section at the top of the page. Added listings for the following: paintball chopping animation, DRV pistol, airbow-gun, Empire DFender, Thorpydo Plunger, and J4 Torque.
2014.Jan.6 - Get out from under your rock, the new and updated mass classification page is now online! The old animation listing pages have been removed and replaced with this single giant chart. The amount of content on this page tripled in size and now includes concept markers, prototypes, and listings for virtually every prominent marker design ever produced.