One of the first suits of armor ever made by Tony Stark to be worn by anyone else was the Guardsman suit of armor. First appearance: Iron Man #43, (November, 1971). The Guardsman armor was made as, first a backup suit of armor for Stark and then later sold as a low-power suit of Iron Man-like armor to be licensed to certain contractors such as Project Pegasus.
With his troublesome heart condition, Stark wanted to create a cheaper, scaled-down version of Iron Man, to be used as a back-up; He based the armor's design loosely on his then-current MK IV Armor, only without the many of the extra details (Perhaps most notably the anti-gravity pods on each hip and the "cuffed" gloves and boots); Making it very sleek and form-fitting. The helmet was similar to the Iron Man armor only without the mouth section, and a "less human" face compared to Stark's own armor. A flaw in the cybernetic control of the original design led to the original user, Stark's friend Kevin O'Brien, being driven insane.
While the armor was effective, it lacked the durability of the full, Iron Man suit and only used repulsors for its offensive weaponry. It has been modified (after the Stark Tech was removed during the Armor Wars) and is used in super-prisons and as a modified support and defense team by government agents.
The original Guardsman suits capabilities included:
The armor only had the basic capabilities of the Iron Man armor. It could fly, fire repulsors, and had limited life support.
It enabled the user to lift roughly 40 tons. The armor was powered by a thermoelectric generator and had a 500 watt chemical battery as a secondary power source.
Flight was attained through chemically fueled boot-jets that could reach 250 mph and would allow a lift capacity of 1,500 lbs. It was vastly superior to Stark's original armor, being faster, sleeker, more lightweight, as well as overall more efficient.
Despite being loosely based on Stark's MK IV armor in terms of appearance, Tony made sure not to make the Guardsman armor his equal.
Another Stark armor design which also appeared in the Avengers in December 1971, the Mandroids were licensed to SHIELD as a heavy weapons support platform. Bristling with offensive weaponry, they were a multi-purpose platform designed to deal with any level of threat including superhumans.
Mandroids were originally designed by Tony Stark and built for use by S.H.I.E.L.D.. The concept was to provide the wearer with extensive offensive options so they could respond to various threats, including those from super-powered humans. Since then, Mandroid armor has been utilized by several criminals including Moses Magnum.
The Mandroid power armor is constructed of a titanium alloy that provides enhanced protection from all types of attack; the suit also offers a life support systems.
Sensors include infrared scanners and radar/sonar, along with a full-range radio and intercom system. The suits increase the wearer's strength and durability to superhuman levels (a Mandroid once threw a car at Iron Man).
The main armament is the array of weaponry: electrostatic beams, lasers, magnetic force "punch-blasters", "neuro-stunners", and tractor/repellor beams.
Other Armor Designs
In addition to these armors designed by Stark, he made several other armors which were either customized for other users (War Machine, James Rhodes), or designed entirely from scratch such as the Rescue Armor.
Rescue, (Pepper Potts)
In a story similar to Tony’s, Pepper was severely injured, and given cybernetic enhancements to survive (created primarily by Tony himself). Tony also made her a suit of armor: the Mark 1616.
Her suit is primarily for search and rescue operations and defense so doesn’t come with the kind of weaponry that most of his do. However, it does include defensive weaponry and a range of useful gadgets.
The Iron Spider (Worn originally by Peter Parker):The most recent design custom designed by Stark was the famed Iron Spider Armor worn by Spider-Man during a period when he lost his famed "spider-sense" and had begun wearing armor to offset his loss of preternatural awareness which made his combat style so effective. Spider-Man had already tried several designs before Stark created this specialized rig.
Parker would later abandon the first Iron Spider armor when he changed to the anti-registration side during the Civil War saga. Parker would recreate the armor once he established his own company, Parker Industries. Once his spider-sense returned he abandoned the armor.
This armor is likely one of the most sophisticated designs Iron Man has ever created outside of his own armors. The suit boasted numerous abilities which allowed Spider-Man to continue using his own powers and expanded his abilities significantly. It most impressive design elements included:
Spinnerette/Stinger Access Ports: allowing Spider-Man to use his natural Webbing and Stingers.
Waldoes: The Iron Spider Armor possessed three mechanical spider-arms, or "waldoes," created from rapidly grown mono-atomic iron alloy crystal. These could be used to see around corners (via cameras in the tips) and to manipulate objects indirectly. The waldoes even have small grippers at the tips working as pseudo fingers.
Glider Device: It could glide via mesh webbing on its arms. The pseudo web form is a biodegradable filament generator. This allows for controlled gliding.
Enhanced Chestpiece: A foamed titanium nitrile fabric chestpiece has body contoured and articulated panels to support the occupant. The chestpiece contains the highest concentration of Kasimir Plate Batteries-- nano-scale power generating devices that exploit "zero point" energy. Can generate 1.2kWatts at peak demand.
Mask Filter: A self-cleaning electrostatic precipitation system allows for full Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Filtration. It also had an 8 minutes worth compressed air capacity, which helped in situations underwater.
Enhanced Lenses: The Headpiece contains large area holographic lensing to allow for long eye-relief and panoramic real-world/-time viewing. Includes several optical spectrum modes with synthesized information overlay.
Constituent Costume Containment: Part of the costume could detach itself to cover an object too dangerous to touch, such as a radioactive asteroid.
Multifunctional Layers: The Iron Spider Armor has a total of 17 layers throughout its workings, with each performing a different, separate and important function.
Light Emitting Plastic Layer: Allows for camouflage(but the darker the surface that Spider-Man blends to the better the the camouflage )and also allows Spider-Man to change the color and style of his suit(e.g. he changed it to the symbiote suit color and his normal red and blue and back)
The suit offered a variety of life support, environmental blending and extensive communication technologies comparable with most of Stark's armor designs as well.
The Armor Wars:
Adding to Stark's woes were suits of armor based on his designs. These were suits whose underlying technological infrastructure was based on his technology but was stolen and purchased from an underground dealer (most likely Justin Hammer, stolen by a mercenary named The Ghost). This includes armors Stark would later destroy during a series called the Armor Wars.
The Raiders, Stiltman, the Controller, the Crimson Dynamo, the Mandroids and the Guardsmen were all-based on Stark designs and he would later destroy or nullify any of the Stark-tech within these suits when he decided to take back his armor-designs for fear of its extreme weaponization.
Force: The mercenary-scientist, Clay Wilson, while under the employ of Justin Hammer created an advance suit of armor utilizing his force field technology and unwittingly hardware derived from stolen Stark-Tech. He would be the catalyst for the Armor Wars, driving Stark to find out how many suits of armor in the world were illegally using his technology.
The Raiders: The Raiders first feature in the title Iron Man, when they suddenly appear during a technology trade show and cause property damage until the arrival of the hero Iron Man. The trio skirmish with Iron Man for a moment, with one of the Raiders using acid to damage the hero's armor. During a second battle at a live boxing match, Iron Man defeats all three Raiders. The trio are revealed to be the employees of Edwin Cord, a corporate rival of Tony Stark (Iron Man's alter ego). Each of the Raider suits provide the wearer with greater durability and flight, and offer varying weapons systems.
"Raider 1" is equipped with wristbands that can generate bullets; acid and lasers;
"Raider 2" is equipped with a net capable of syphoning energy and a protective shield that absorbs energy attacks and
"Raider 3" has two wrist weapons that project and amplify sonic waves in concentrated form.
Firepower: Jack Taggert worked on Project: Firepower as the pilot for the experimental suit. The government sponsored the program stating that it was for soldiers in the next war, and to control rogue super beings; when in reality it was to stop riots. Jack trained on a simulator learning to operate the suit and take down Iron Man. The Firepower suit was indeed based on Stark-tech and proved remarkably effective. Taggard actually fought Iron Man to a standstill before Stark upgrades his own suit and destroys the Firepower platform in a later battle.
- The suit contains a particle cannon on its wrist as well as heat beams, lasers, mini-grenades and surface-to-air missiles. The suit’s main weapon is the high energy, low radiation missile know as the Terminax.
Other armors which "borrowed" from Stark's designs included the Controller, Stilt Man, the first Titanium Man armor and the first Crimson Dynamo armor.
In recent years, the Iron Patriot used by Norman Osborne was based on Stark's older designs (stolen from Justin Hammer) and was later destroyed (by Stark).
Iron Widow (Natalia Romanova); Earth 1610: From the Ultimates Earth, Tony Stark designed a suit of powered armor for his bride to be, Natalia Romanova but they had difficulty deciding what to name it. Most of the time it can be found under the "Iron Widow" armor.
- Her Stark-designed armor gave her tremendous superhuman strength and durability, the capacity for supersonic flight, and assorted built-in weapons such as repulsor rays, wrist-mounted machine guns and mind-impairing "thought-scramblers".