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Ricochet 2K Review

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Ricochet 2K0
by Bill Mills

Since introducing the Ricochet 2K, the first non-ViewLoader agitating loader to be marketed in the US, Ennis Rushton of Ricochet Development, LLC. has made a number of minor design changes, mostly relating to how the Ricochet loaders fit into the feedneck of a paintgun.

For paintguns using elbows that clamp down on the loader this is not so much of an issue.  However for vertical feed paintguns that have a feed neck, the fit of the loader to the neck is important.  If the loader fits too tight, it’s hard to put on, but if it fits too loose, it can fall off during a game.

To make matters worse, ViewLoader introduced the Revolution loader in the mid 1990s with a neck that was fatter than the “standard” necks on their previous loaders, and then corrected the problem a couple of years later.  Paintgun manufacturers had tooled up for the fatter neck, and ended up with new loaders falling out of their vertical feed paintguns.

The first Ricochet 2K loaders were made oversized and shipped with a piece of sandpaper.  The instructions (which many players who complained the neck was too large didn’t bother to read) said to sand down the neck until it made a perfect fit with the paintgun.  The two problems with that are that it takes time, and that the loader will then be sized for just one paintgun.

The next generation of Ricochet 2K, and Ricochet AK (a lower cost model sans the LCD display) loaders featured a feed neck with vertical ribs.  The ribs allowed the thinner sections of the neck to flex a little more, and meant that less material needed to be sanded away for a better fit.

In the spring of 2002, Rushton showed WARPIG.com the new adapter for the Ricochet, as well as drawings for the Ricochet 2K0.  The adapter (featured in the technical photo gallery in WARPIG’s NPPL LA Open coverage for 2002) is a ladder shaped piece of plastic that wraps around the loader’s neck like a shim.  The steps of the ladder fit into the grooves in the neck, and wedge it tight into the paintgun.

The more complete solution featured in the drawings became a reality in the summer of 2002.  Rushton hit on a simple concept that was already in paintball.  He looked at a barrel plug and said “why can’t I do that with a loader?”  The Ricochet 2K0 loader features a pair of o-rings resting in grooves.  These o-rings provide friction, just like a barrel plug in a barrel.

WARPIG.com tested the 2K0 in a vertical feed E-Matrix.  The loader took a bit of twisting to get into place, and we found it was best to make sure the o-rings were lightly lubricated with paintgun oil.  If dry they tended to start tearing on feed necks that gave a very tight fit.  With some wiggling and twisting the loader could be installed or removed without tools, but it was more than sturdy enough to keep from falling out while playing.  In fact, we set it up in a test rig where it suspended a 20 pound case full of tools without slipping.  That’s pretty solid considering that only a few seconds were needed to remove it from the paintgun by hand.

The Ricochet 2K0 loader, with the same electronics as the 2K, is available from the same dealers that carry the 2K, and shell upgrades are available for existing 2K owners direct from Ricochet for $15.

Addendum:  All new Ricochet loaders use the o-ring system, and ship with a set of o-rings in three thicknesses to allow for a proper fit in a variety of paintgun feed necks.

 


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