Spike's Tactical Bad Experience Review


PDA






GRAPE-DRANK
March 9, 2012, 11:11 PM
I'll let the pictures speak for themselves. I went to put a looped end plate on the buffer tube for my Brand New, unfired Spike's Tactical lower. The nut was put on at the factory improperly. I had to buy another buffer tube and 6 position stock to replace the defective Spike's Tactical.

Spikes Tactical would not warranty or even look at the buffer tube. They Didn't even look at it.

I have done this mod a half dozen times. Second time on a Spikes. Look at the pics and see for yourselves. Most of the people at Spikes Tactical were very helpful, it was one guy in their warranty department that would not warranty the product even though he had not seen it.

I told the guy "Let me send it to you, if it is determined that I'm an (expletive) and I broke it no loss you can just throw it away and I'll be fine with that." He told me not to send it in and throw it away myself.

I absolutely would not recommend Spike's Tactical to anyone. Most everyone was helpful it was just that one guy.

The complete Spikes Lower that I bought brand new. I had to buy another buffer tube that you see on the lower receiver when I removed the bottom one which is the original Spikes the nut was put on improperly and stripped the buffer tube. Luckily the threaded part of the buffer tube that attaches to the lower receiver was not stripped when it was installed on the lower receiver.http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/spikes0.jpg

As you can see on the other Spikes Tactical lower I have the threaded part of the buffer tube is not stripped and will screw into a lower receiver.http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/spikes1.jpg

The assembler and tester:http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/spikes2.jpg

Stripped from the factory
http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/spikes4.jpg

I was able to fix it with an aftermarket buffer tube and 6 position stock:http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/spikes5.jpg

If you enjoyed reading about "Spike's Tactical Bad Experience Review" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
68wj
March 9, 2012, 11:26 PM
Break out the band saw. :neener:

Cesiumsponge
March 9, 2012, 11:58 PM
Looks like costs went into engraving spiders on everything instead of QA.

GRAPE-DRANK
March 10, 2012, 12:06 AM
Well, look at the nut. You can tell I used the proper tool. It's not like I used a pipe wrench. There isn't a scratch on it. The hardest part about doing the mod for a 1 point sling is making sure the spring doesn't pop out.

All you have to do is turn the nut. A very simple mod. How do you justify that the the customer did something wrong by loosening a nut with the proper tool?

I'll tell you what. I have two Spikes Lowers (one stripped), and a half dozen Spikes stickers that I have acquired from other Spikes parts I have bought. That naked receiver was the last thing I bought by Spikes and will be the last. Stag has been stepping up their game and Rock River has always been consistent. I'll go with them from here on out.

FlyinBryan
March 10, 2012, 12:25 AM
sorry about your bad luck and terrible customer service experience. it sounds like they were just looking for an excuse not to make it right and hang on to every dollar they can get their hands on. i would email customer service a letter and let them know you will forward the letter to the top ranks of spikes and post it on every message board on the internet.

check out windham weaponry.

they sell quality, not the chart toppers or the flavor of the month.

lifetime transferable warranty.

nathan
March 10, 2012, 01:52 AM
I suggest you post this in the AR15.com forum under Spikes Tactical forum and get others know. Sad that one guy is not doing the right thing. I bet he will be taken out if this goes out,


http://www.ar15.com/forums/f_2/282_Spikes_Tactical.html

Z-Michigan
March 10, 2012, 02:01 AM
I'm bothered by the vindictive streak I hear from posters, apart from the OP who I can easily understand why he's unhappy. Many basically good organizations just have one bad employee, or even one employee who has a bad day.

OP, I would contact the owner of Spike's, Tom _ whose email is easy to find in the Spike's forum at AR15.com, and explain the situation. I expect you will get a good resolution.

I've had two warranty issues with Spikes and both were dealt with appropriately. Although they don't have the very best service reputation, they have a pretty good service reputation. I would pursue this a bit more.

FWIW I had a more serious problem with an AR from another prominent and supposedly up and coming manufacturer, went round and round with them for almost two months, finally posted a thread on another forum and within a few days I was getting useful assistance from a different employee of that company who I would not otherwise have been able to contact. It ultimately resolved the problem.

SharkHat
March 10, 2012, 02:24 AM
Considering that you said yourself that you've had good experiences in the past, I wouldn't let the actions of a single employee impact me so much.

Escalate the issue. Make sure your messages are clear and reasonable. THEN if the matter is not resolved satisfactorily, let the chips fall where they may.

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 02:26 AM
I have tried to contact Spikes for several problems on several occasions. Extra slots for fsb milled into barrel, missing screws for 9mm mag blocks, gritty upper, failure to fire more than 150ish round strings (suppressed), out of spec lower.

I have had zero responses.

The gunstore I part time at refuses to carry anything Spikes products due to QC issues, customer support, and shipping issues. We have more problems with Spikes than with ANY AR-15 company.

They used to bhave a great product at a reasonable price. But they got too big too fast.

I now group them into Black Thorne category.

Hell I even cut up the shirt I got from them into cleaning patches.

We all have gun companies that we don't like. But I completely loath Spikes. People used to bash me for my opinion on Spikes.

nathan
March 10, 2012, 03:26 AM
So who has good customer service if one has complaints? How about Palmetto State Armory? BCM is but impossible to get hold on to , their phone is all recordings and you are directed to their website . ROck RIver ARms ? Colt ? What now?

DANNY-L
March 10, 2012, 10:10 AM
I would send in feedback because it sounds to me like the problem is a certain individual not the company.

boricua9mm
March 10, 2012, 10:23 AM
You sure you dialed the right number and didn't get a prank answerer? Reason I ask is a woman once called me a cursed me out about not buying shoes for her son. I played the game and told her what was up with those shoes...:D

Talk to Tom Miller at Spikes. His contact info is here. (http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_2_282/194405_Spike_s_Tactical_Warranty.html) He's the guy who will make it right. Unfortunately in this day and age one needs to exhaust both telephone and email options to get resolutions 100% of the time.

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 11:17 AM
BCM through Email. Be patient, but they will answer.

Orkan
March 10, 2012, 11:22 AM
I can sympathize. Spikes left me out to dry on 2 22LR kits. I've had no less than 6 22LR firing pins break. Now in order to replace broken ones I have to reshape an AR15 firing pin.

Spikes tactical can suck a bug as far as I'm concerned.

nathan
March 10, 2012, 11:38 AM
So the best to avoid the troubles is built it yourself. If its your first, buy a complete rifle and learn and go from there.

Aiko492
March 10, 2012, 12:49 PM
So who has good customer service if one has complaints? How about Palmetto State Armory? BCM is but impossible to get hold on to , their phone is all recordings and you are directed to their website . ROck RIver ARms ? Colt ? What now?
Daniel Defense does have outstanding CS

GRAPE-DRANK
March 10, 2012, 12:50 PM
Well, I'll tell anyone and everyone with my experience with Spikes. I appreciate the responses and I am not a member of Ar-15.com, but I will probably become one.

The Spike's lower is soon to be a registered SBR, so I"m stuck with it. It's still a new lower with the original grease in it. I can only hope that everything else was installed properly. If not, I don't know what I'll do, but Spike's will never get another dime from me.

The other Spikes lower I have is naked and will be mothballed in my safe. I was planning on SBR'ing that lower too, but after this; forget it. It was a simple part with a simple fix and I was left high and dry. If it was something more important like a barrel or a receiver I might push the issue further.

Rock River Arms seems to be consistent and I like the direction I have been seeing with Stag. I love Colt, and Smith is fine, but I like building Ar's. and even thought Colt and Smith are quality, they're pricey.

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 01:06 PM
Grape:

As you can tell Im not a spikes fan, but I would at least assemble the spare lower to see if its in spec. If so, then SBR it and have fun. No need for a $100 paperweight is there?

GRAPE-DRANK
March 10, 2012, 02:28 PM
No need for a $100 paperweight is there?

Why not? Obama might get re elected and when the Black Rifle / Ammo craze comes back around I might have a $200.00 paper weight that I could sell for another stamp! LOL :-)

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 02:57 PM
Or add a $500 kit from PSA and have a $1400 rifle lolz

Cesiumsponge
March 10, 2012, 03:26 PM
Great customer service is nice but I hope I never need it because the product was delivered as functional and correct. It also doesn't help that there are companies that represent themselves on forums and get into public pissing matches with posters or rival companies. It's like watching two kids fighting on the playground.

Many AR and AR-related companies have representatives that actively post on AR-related forums and jump in to offer help whenever someone (rightfully or vindictively) starts a thread like this. If you insist on airing out dirty laundry in public, try that venue instead because none of those representatives really hang out at THR. Once in a while things do slip through the cracks, but it's an excuse I hear too often for companies that don't run a tight ship, nor care to, and sometimes airing out public laundry is a way to force their hand to step up to the plate. When the complaint of one guy becomes a force multiplier as a complaint viewed by thousands, sometimes a company will have no choice but to fix the issue.

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 04:34 PM
Not airing dirty laundry. I have tried on several occasions to give them the opportunity to fix the problems. But when a company puts out sub standard products and refuses to honor any warranty or acknowledge the problem, I feel its my place to tell my side of it and let others decide if that is where they want to spend their money.

I didn't post this in hopes Spikes would see it. I posted to warn other THRers of what they might be getting into.

Im not saying all Spikes were junk, but here lately they are definitely having some issues. I would like them to step up and get back to their former glory. Competition is a good thing for the consumer.

MrBill120
March 10, 2012, 07:59 PM
I for one am VERY interested in this thread. I am looking into buying a complete AR/ M4 rifle. I contacted Stag direct the other day and was going to think it over this weekend. THEN I thought of Spikes....liked their prices....then found THIS thread. As a potential customer, I appreciate the legitimate constructive criticism being given. Customer Service is a HUGE selling point to me!

Z-Michigan
March 10, 2012, 10:04 PM
How about Palmetto State Armory? BCM is but impossible to get hold on to , their phone is all recordings and you are directed to their website . ROck RIver ARms ? Colt ? What now?

I've had problems with PSA similar to what the OP describes with Spike's. BCM doesn't answer the phone but does answer email. They do not care about cosmetics though so be careful of buying a BCM if you expect a pretty rifle.

Daniel Defense has wonderful customer service and great products. If you don't mind spending a little more up front, you will be very happy with the result.

Mot45acp
March 10, 2012, 10:23 PM
Z, what problems did you have with Palmetto?

I have some lowers on order and was looking at using their rifle kits to make some plinkers for the kids. What should I be mindful of? I have only ordered Glock barrels from em before.

nathan
March 10, 2012, 10:31 PM
If you decide to buy from these AR builders who have the lifetime warranties which in truth are iffy, then make sure you shoot the gun in the nearest possible time right after getting it from your FFL dealer. That way you can find out the problem(s) and get back with them as soon as possible. Have your receipt ready at hand. Lifetime warranties are not a guarantee they may fix it.

GRAPE-DRANK
March 11, 2012, 12:03 AM
I for one am VERY interested in this thread. I am looking into buying a complete AR/ M4 rifle. I contacted Stag direct the other day and was going to think it over this weekend. THEN I thought of Spikes....liked their prices....then found THIS thread. As a potential customer, I appreciate the legitimate constructive criticism being given. Customer Service is a HUGE selling point to me!

Stag has just set themselves apart by offering complete uppers for the short-barelled market. Their SBR as far as I can tell are exact clones of what you see used in military and police. Their SBR barrels are 1/7 twist, chrome-lined, full-auto bolt carrier, etc. I believe that Stag standard length uppers are 1/9 and 1/8 twist if the twist rate is an issue.

I just like that Stag offers reasonably price SBR uppers. Seems to me their lowers are fine and I heard that when Smith & Wesson got into the AR business that Stag made Smith's rifles. Don't hold me to that though.

I have no preference of any AR brand.

68wj
March 11, 2012, 12:09 AM
Stag = CMT, who is a DOD parts manufacturer. They do a lot more than left-handed rifles, and do it pretty well.

Z-Michigan
March 11, 2012, 12:10 AM
My problems with Palmetto State Armory:
1) I ordered two spare bolts. One bolt had a machining burr on a lug. I contacted them, they shipped me a replacement and a call tag, all was good.
2) I bought a complete upper in a 20" rifle setup. They assembled it with a round handguard retainer cap instead of triangular. This is acceptable but kinda weird. Not a big deal, and I didn't bother to contact them about it. From reading forums I wasn't the only one to get this and think it was weird.
3) From the same order as the bolts, I had also ordered a complete BCG. When I went to use it almost six months after buying it, I had function problems with the rifle. I discovered that the carrier had a poorly machined cam pin track, out of spec compared to all my other carriers. Switched to a DD BCG and the rifle worked perfectly from that day onward. I contacted PSA; this time they said I could ship it back on my dime for a replacement. I did, and instead of a replacement they "worked on" my defective BCG and sent it back to me looking heavily used, and with something jacked up so it was no longer possible to disassemble because the cam pin would not come out. I contacted them again, got promises of a replacement but then nothing happened for a month despite repeated attempts to contact. Finally I posted about the issue in another forum, and a few days later a PSA rep contacted me and I did finally get a replacement with a call tag for the defective one, but no reimbursement of my shipping costs for its first round trip back to them.

You can chalk it up to growing pains or whatever. I don't think they're bad, but I think there has been some ridiculous fawning over them in the last year as being the greatest new thing. They're just another company trying to get market share by offering low prices on stuff that claims high specs. I think they have had some QC and customer service issues.

GRAPE-DRANK
March 11, 2012, 12:48 AM
A nice fella on another local forum I go to emailed Tom at Spikes and Tom said that they use grease on the threads and a fixture to install and stake them. I ask you all where is there any evidence of a stake boogering up the the threads? I took 4 photos.

4 angles:
http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/s1.jpg

http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/s2.jpg

http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/s3.jpg

http://i875.photobucket.com/albums/ab311/tonyrocksquint5/s4.jpg

FlyinBryan
March 11, 2012, 12:54 AM
is it just me or does it look oversized out near the end?

like tapered ala drill stem, but in reverse? maybe its just an optical illusion i suppose.

wasr10634unme
March 11, 2012, 03:36 AM
good to know. customer service is also very important to me as i work part time retail at a pet store and take care of my customers.

Mr.Blue
March 11, 2012, 12:50 PM
The two AR companies that I do business with are Daniel Defense and LaRue. Both have awesome customer service and quality products.

JoeMal
March 11, 2012, 12:57 PM
And what's sad about this....is Spikes boasts a lifetime warranty on craftsmanship

I'm glad I went with DD

GRAPE-DRANK
March 11, 2012, 01:14 PM
And what's sad about this....is Spikes boasts a lifetime warranty on craftsmanship

Some warranty, the head of the warranty department accused me of boogering up the threads by dragging a stake pin or some such through it without even looking at it.

I feel better now that I have been vindicated by my peers in the firearms community. Lesson learned, I'll pass it on just like all the info that others have passed on to me.

nathan
March 11, 2012, 03:08 PM
Most of the time they will not admit fault. The best thing if you notice a defective part is not to do anything to it and invoke the warranty .Doing further on anything will tell them you did to bugger it up.

GRAPE-DRANK
March 11, 2012, 03:21 PM
Doing further on anything will tell them you did to bugger it up.

You couldn't tell anything was wrong with it until you backed the castle nut off. The only reason I did that was to replace the end plate so that I could put an ambi-plate on for a 1 point sling.

nathan
March 11, 2012, 03:24 PM
Try to get hold of the manager of Spikes. Talk to him man to man and see what their socalled Lifetime Warranty will do to correct this. Let us know, its good you brought this up so many members here will be warned .If good comes out, our thumbs up to Spikes Tactical no hassle warranty. If not, let us know what will happen.

Cesiumsponge
March 11, 2012, 04:28 PM
Colt, Daniel Defense, LMT, BCM, Larue have consistently good products. You will find it difficult to turn up complaints with these companies (politics aside, regarding Colt and mil/LE/civilian issues in the past). What complaints you do find, the companies tend to fix the matter very quickly. I've broken a LaRue mount (yes, they can be broken!) and they immediately shipped me a replacement with a prepaid tag to mail back the old one.

Why is Spikes using GREASE on the threads? Castle nuts spin on without any problem, dry. If you need grease to make the threads work, the female threads are too small or the male threads are too big and it requires grease and a wrench to thread on the nut. What that says about the company is, "if the parts aren't in spec, lube it up and force it on!" Staking the castle nut only displaces a little metal at the outer diameter of the part. It does not distort the threads. Sounds like a BS excuse to avoid responsibility. Check the AR-centric forums and you'll find a lot more on Spikes. Draw your own conclusions from research.

nathan
March 11, 2012, 04:45 PM
There are many forum members here also members of AR15.com . There should be good advise coming . Again, get hold of the manager at Spikes, they should make true their Lifetime Warranty into effect and not only in paper. Their reputation is at stake especially in a digitalized world we live in now. Communications run in split secs and reaches a global audience in matter of secs as well.

GRAPE-DRANK
March 11, 2012, 05:36 PM
Again, get hold of the manager at Spikes, they should make true their Lifetime Warranty into effect and not only in paper.



I posted this in a local forum that I am a member of. Someone has already contacted Tom on my behalf, so far to no avail.

http://www.vaguntrader.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/288450/Spike_s_Tactical_would_not_war#Post288450

unlimited4x4
March 11, 2012, 06:10 PM
Grape, contact Mr. Miller at Spikes directly and he should help. Send him all the photos and explain everything to him. Let us know how it goes. His email is below. It was great of a person to contact Mr. Miller on your behalf, but he needs to talk to You.

acreativebuilder@aol.com

M&PVolk
March 11, 2012, 06:31 PM
For every company out there, there are occasional issues, especially when they have problems keeping up with demand. I believe Spikes might be going through some growing pains, as they blew up amazingly fast and have struggled with keeping up with demand. That's no excuse for getting bad customer service, but I would hesitate to demonize an entire company based off of one employee.

Art Eatman
March 11, 2012, 08:40 PM
Enough for now. Start a new thread after following the advice about making contact with Miller at Spike's.

If you enjoyed reading about "Spike's Tactical Bad Experience Review" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!