Welcome to Part 2 of "Behind the Scene #7". In our second part we talked with Ledz about the new EGO LV1.6, why there is no LV2 and you'll get a little glimpse of the CS2 Mech Frame shown at the PB Extravaganza 2020.
The EGO is back. Hell yeah! What has changed compared to the LV1.5?
Let's start by talking about the Elephant in the room why is this not an LV2. An LV2 would have to be something very different. Players want a hoseless design and the AT pipe (even though it’s great) isn't what most people would consider "hoseless". So until we can make it truly hoseless I can't see us making what people are calling an LV2. The unfortunate reality is that even though there are a number of die-hard Ego and LV fans out there, the sales figures simply don't support the extensive investment in new tooling, fixturing, plastics and electronics that would be required to make a "true" LV2. It's simply not economically viable for us at the moment. When we make changes we want to give players the best possible marker we can at that time. Sometimes it might be just a body refresh and a few tweaks, and if that's the case we don't give it a new model number, just a point change to the model like the LV1.1 or LV1.5. This is the LV1.6 because we have refreshed the body design, coupled it with our FL Barrel system and Carbon Fibre Tip.
But the big change is that we have changed over to a Custom Made SMS Solenoid that is fully user serviceable, and super reliable. This might not seem important to most people but for us it’s huge. We were having huge failure rates with the LV1.5 solenoids in-house before we would even build any LV's. So many that we couldn’t reliably schedule LV production. Some weeks 80% of solenoids would fail our in-house bench tests. Those are failures before we could even build them into a gun! You just can't run a business around those kinds of numbers. So we knew that if we wanted to keep the LV line going we needed a new solenoid. So we talked to SMC, who we have had a very long term and fantastic working relationship with over many many years, and even though they initially said no, they finally agreed to make us a fully custom solenoid valve with integrated flow controls that would fit in the tiny package we needed for the LV1.6 And it works great! The feeling from our beta testers is that the LV1.6 is now even smoother and quieter than before. It’s certainly faster!!! Its still an LV and I can't wait to get my new one :-)
The LV1.6 is awesome, but why does it still have the AT Pipe?
To re-direct to Air from the bottom of the grip through the marker in a stacked tube poppit valve marker isn't easy and Jack has spent many hours poring over Solidworks trying to make it happen. I answer a lot of the question with people asking for a hoseless LV (LV2 some would say) and I’ve asked Jack many times to try again.
Jack is a man of principles and if he is not happy with the way something will look, feel and shoot he simply will not make it. He tells me that to do this it would increase the height of the LV too high and it wouldn't feel right. He hasn't given in and I won't let him but if it’s not right, we are not going to release it.
The GEO GSL was the last SL known to date. Are they any plans to do a new one? Something like a SLV? (EGO LV1 SL)
Not at the moment, there is certainly nothing on the drawing board. We are a pretty small team and we have lots of projects to complete. Planet Eclipse has gone from just the EGO in 2005 to now where we currently produce markers from the EMEK100, ETHA2, 170R/M170R, GEO4, LV1.6 and the flagship CS2 Pro. Not forgetting the EMG100 Magfed marker and the Field Rental marker the EMEK. So we are very busy. When you make a marker you don't just finish, click the go button, and sit back. We are constantly tweaking and evolving.
You would be amazed at the fires you need to put out producing this many markers. Sometimes there are just not enough hours in the day to do everything we want to do, but we try. Plus don't forget we already make quite a few custom and Private Label markers already! Just in the last 12 months we've done Infamous and HK CS2's and Predator 170R's, with a few more specials on the drawing board. We love doing custom markers. But we tend to do them in conjunction with our teams and customers now. They keep driving us forward.
Which Model do you expect to win this battle?
That’s not for us to decide. That’s for the players to decide. Last time this battled raged on, the Spool Valve GEO won for sure. But the LV has been growing in power, in the shadows... It’s all about choice or sides even. Do you want to shoot the CS2 Pro GP Core or did you love the feel of the IV Core which is now in the GEO4? Maybe you have always loved the LV Poppet Valve markers? Its nice having choices. Maybe this time around we will have a 3 way battle?!
We also saw that you have unveiled a CS2 Mech frame. Tell us more.
Yes we have. We love the Mech revival and the M170R and the EMEK100 are great shooters in their different price ranges. But there are always some players that just want the very best. The ultimate expression of style and technology. Our current range topper is the CS2, and the GP Core, like the standard Gamma Core in the Emek and M170R, makes a perfect mech shooter.
But just like we took the Gamma Core and turbo charged it for the CS2 we have completely re-worked the mech frame for the CS2. There is a completely new 3-way valve with integrated QEV. Then there is the mech trigger version of the Lever Valve in the LV line. Except we added loads of roller bearings, ramps, and adjustable cams to create what is possibly the most customizable mech trigger in paintball. It's definitely a bit special.
That's it for now! Thank you very much again Ledz. It's always interesting to hear how big companies like Planet Eclipse do stuff.