At the shop I work at, we've probably sold over 25-30 ions, I'm guessing. Most come back once because the customer doesn't know how to do something. The guys that use them 2-4 times a month get things like solenoid barbs broken (the only major flaw on the Ion IMHO). Once guy is now sending his in for the third time, aside from him I can't think of anyone who has had their gun sent in more than once. Most only play once or twice a month but still, they are coming out, sliding on it, dropping it, sitting on it, and still shooting half a case of paint with no trouble. Hell, its ten times more reliable than any Brass Eagle gun and now the Ion is almost in their price range!
My boss stocks at least two levels of Ions at all times now. I'm the one who works on them most of the time and I've really learned to like them. The owners are proud of them, despite the occasional problem, because they shoot fast, smooth, and didn't cost them so much that they can pick up a few upgrades with it. If you run a field, Ions are nice because players tend to shoot a little more paint and have LESS gun problems. That's right, LESS! This may not make sense but think of all the people who chop and misfire with their blowbacks. When they chop, they can't hit anything so they have less fun. How many times have you heard "my gun isn't working" just to look in the breach and see soup. As long they aren't lighting people up, which you need to watch out for
, they are not hurting your field in anyway.
Also, if they didn't buy their Ion from you, tech work will turn a good profit almost every time. All you need is an oring kit, some lube, and a few misc parts like eyes or detents and you can help your customers and yourself quickly and easily.
For those who had ordered ions before the drop, I feel for you. The Ion was a staple for our shop last year because of the margin and now that's gone. I hope SP helps you out a little bit at least.
As for me, I'm happy for the price drop! I'm now thinking of picking up a Shocker for myself. My boss ordered six ions, several body kits, qev's, and a bunch of other stuff. The Proto was our best selling highend gun last year but this year it maybe different.
---Don't start flaming over shockers now, I've worked on them too and most of the time you just have to replace the 017 orings. After owning two of them before, I can say that they are very nice guns, if you know how to work on them.