Warranty Issue


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25cschaefer
May 25, 2012, 09:26 PM
My brother bought a Ben Franklin Armory AR15 a few months ago and loved it. After a couple hundred rounds it started fireing one shot when you pull the trigger and one shot when you release, like the Mini 14 staple mod. He sent it back to the factory to have it fixed under warranty but they called him and told him that since he installed a sling mount, the gun was no longer covered under warranty-anything more than field stripping apparently voids the warranty. They then said that since the gun was "unsafe" they could not send it back. No fix, no gun, no money.

That seems plain wrong to me, robbery.

If your brand new Ford gets a flat on the way out of the lot and you take it back, the tire isn't covered under warranty, the dealership can't keep your car because it is unsafe.

Has anybody ever heard of this?

What options are there besides hiring a lawyer (more expensive than the gun) or driving to California and having a "talk" (gas is expensive and the lawyer thing, once again).

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foghornl
May 25, 2012, 10:37 PM
Robbery is too kind of a word for this, but what description fits is well... lower than a snake's belly in the ditch beside the "Low Road"

Call to the California Attorney General, perhaps the US Attorney AND the ATF is in order.

psyopspec
May 25, 2012, 10:37 PM
Many attorneys will consult for free, and having a cease and desist letter sent might be cheaper than you think. You can also send your own official-looking letter to the same end via certified mail - might get someone's attention.

Sorry to hear about your brother's situation, and I hope he can resolve it.

ApacheCoTodd
May 26, 2012, 01:06 AM
If the facts are exactly as stated (I'm just sayin' a lot of folk leave things out) and even if by the strictest letter of the warranty it is "out of warranty" this should not only not be tolerated but addressed aggressively.

The fact that time, energy and possibly money may be required to get this company to "stand up" means to me that BF (interesting initials...) needs to go beyond making it right and doing a little CYA on the part of your brother.

At this point, I'd give one other person at the company - other than the individual responsible for the "suck it" response - the opportunity to backpedal with a "musta been a misunderstanding..." apology and compensation.

Now, all that ranting outa the way, the hammer is most likely being withheld by the disconnector as designed yet is being allowed to travel unobstructed to strike the firing pin upon the disconnector's release. If this is the case and in fact your brother did nothing more than address a sling adaptor - these folks are way outa line regardless of hiding behind a warranty

madcratebuilder
May 26, 2012, 07:26 AM
Call the BBB and file a complaint. Call your state consumer protection office. Tell BFA that all this needs is a FCG repair, a new disco should fix it.

If you have any local gun forums post this info so others don't get screwed by BFA.

25cschaefer
May 27, 2012, 08:54 AM
Thanks guys, somebody higher up in the company is suppose to be calling my brother on Monday/Tuesday and I have given him (my brother) some talking points. I will keep you updated.

DNS
May 27, 2012, 09:51 AM
Might want to add that one of the biggest rifle forums on the net is watching this to see how they handle it.

Ben Franklin Armory is on my don't buy list now.

danez71
May 27, 2012, 10:26 AM
Wouldnt this be covered by the magnuson-moss warranty act?!

Rmeju
May 28, 2012, 01:15 AM
The options for you, that I can think of in descending order of desirability are:

1. Get things straightened out with the higher ups on your own. This will be BY FAR, the cheapest, fastest, and most effective. However, if the facts are as you stated, and things don't get fixed, you MUST move down the list.

2. You can call your state (or that state's) attorney general and make a complaint. Double check your facts with your brother before you do that. I'm not implying anything about this, just a precaution. BBB is ok, but not stellar. You could try that first or at the same time.

3. Contact an attorney and ask what you can do. Please remember that if this behavior is the norm for this company, then this probably won't be the first time they've been threatened with legal action. That very well might mean that they're going to make you actually follow through with legal action, rather than buckling if you send them a letter, even from an attorney. That can get expensive in a hurry. How much was the rifle worth?

3A. An interesting option is that you could probably file in small claims court. It will cost some money, but you can probably recover it. Make sure to send notice to the company's proper address by certified mail and keep your paperwork from doing that. Bring it to court. You can assert "personal jurisdiction" over the company by virtue of its making the sale in your state. If they're in the same state, all the better. When they don't show up, (or if they do show up, whatever) you should win (assuming you bring all your documentation showing what happened... bring whatever you have). Be prepared to explain yourself to the SCC judge whether or not they show up.

Assuming you "win," you can ask the judge to award you your filing fees in addition to the value of the rifle. Once you have your judgement, call their local county sheriff and ask about how to file for and "levy" a "writ of execution" on the company HQ. Be prepared to furnish the paperwork the court gave you awarding your judgment. Assuming the local SD is cooperative/isn't super busy, that means they'll send a couple of deputies down there, take stuff until your judgment is satisfied (hopefully cash), and sell it until they've got cash. When they get that, they'll send it to you.

It'd be a pain in the ass, but it's a low cost/high effort way to recover. You could also hire a local attorney to at least give you the basics of going to SCC. Don't forget to ask about how to actually collect if you win. Don't do either 3 or 3A until all other options are exhausted.

Frank Ettin
May 28, 2012, 01:37 AM
Wouldn't the company be willing to repair the rifle at your expense? Most gun makers will do repairs on their products when out of warranty, but charge for the work.

If so, your brother would have to pay to have the rifle repaired. Once he gets it back he can decide if it's worth pursuing on a breach of warranty theory a claim for the cost of the repair and shipping. He might be able to pursue such a claim in small claims court.

9mmepiphany
May 28, 2012, 02:34 AM
They then said that since the gun was "unsafe" they could not send it back. No fix, no gun, no money.
This just doesn't seem completely correct either.

I know there is a liability problem when a firearms manufacturer releases a firearm in an unsafe condition...and it isn't uncommon for them to refuse to release it once they discover it is unsafe. Usually there is an offer to make repairs to make the gun safe... at the owner's expense

gremlinx
May 28, 2012, 08:59 AM
There are many companys that use the you did this one unrelated thing so we will not take care of this other thing. I would keep away from any of these companys. There are too many companys who will go over the top to take care of their customers. I have been reading some posts about Kahr not warrantying their guns because of Reloads being shot. Some others are said to do the same. I can see a company not fixing a problem with ammo of any kind that was over powered and damages a gun. From what I have read Glock Smith Ruger Springfield and others even though they dont recomend reloads will take care of an unrelated problem. I am looking for a CCW gun right now and the Glock seems to be one that stands out. I am just worried about the thickness of the 26.

HankB
May 28, 2012, 09:42 AM
They then said that since the gun was "unsafe" they could not send it back. No fix, no gun, no money. No AR15 sling mount I've ever seen will render a rifle "unsafe" . . . care to elaborate? Did this one involve drilling holes in the receiver or something of the sort? :confused:

That seems plain wrong to me, robbery.Indeed.

I would first try to sort things out with a "higher up" at the company, but if unsuccessful, I'd be doing some serious research into the possibility of filing a criminal complaint.

Taurus 617 CCW
May 28, 2012, 10:03 AM
It sounds to me like it was a receiver end plate sing mount that was installed and requires the buffer tube to be removed in order to install it. Some companies (including the one I worked for) would install it free if the lower was sent in which would maintain the warranty or it would be recommended that it be sent to a local dealer for installation.

B.F. armory refusing to ship the rifle back but not offering any solutions is bull huckey. They should at least offer to fix it for a charge. My suspicion is that they found a problem with their trigger components or the pin hole location on the lower and didn't want to admit they were at fault. I would recommend getting on the horn with the highest person on the totem pole you can and ask them if they plan on being in business in five years. Then explain the situation. If they don't budge, try to go above them. If they are at the top, give them a piece of your mind. I hate to admit it but irate customers get taken care of rather quickly, especially those that work in the media industry. Keep bugging them until it gets resolved! Good luck.

NavyLCDR
May 28, 2012, 10:29 AM
They then said that since the gun was "unsafe" they could not send it back. No fix, no gun, no money.This just doesn't seem completely correct either.

I know there is a liability problem when a firearms manufacturer releases a firearm in an unsafe condition...and it isn't uncommon for them to refuse to release it once they discover it is unsafe. Usually there is an offer to make repairs to make the gun safe... at the owner's expense

The biggest problem is that now the gun is an NFA Title 2 Machine Gun. It fires more than one round with one pull of the trigger.

ApacheCoTodd
May 28, 2012, 11:49 AM
The biggest problem is that now the gun is an NFA Title 2 Machine Gun. It fires more than one round with one pull of the trigger.
Unless things have changed since the last time I testified in Federal court as a defense witness on an issue such as this, that is absolutely incorrect if the condition of function is directly related to a malfunction.

However, if it is allowed to remain in this state with the ability to fire more than one round with a single application of the trigger and used as such with the full knowledge of the owner/possessor - well, that's a whole different color of horses in a fish kettle.

Right now, today, and as I said, if the circumstances are exactly as described in the OP - simply disassembling the firearm or only removal of the trigger group will suffice.

9mmepiphany
May 28, 2012, 01:43 PM
I have been reading some posts about Kahr not warrantying their guns because of Reloads being shot. Some others are said to do the same. I can see a company not fixing a problem with ammo of any kind that was over powered and damages a gun. From what I have read Glock Smith Ruger Springfield and others even though they dont recomend reloads will take care of an unrelated problem. I am looking for a CCW gun right now and the Glock seems to be one that stands out. I am just worried about the thickness of the 26.
That is a pretty universal condition which would void at least part if not all of your warranty. There is very little about the operation of a semi-auto pistol which would not be affected by using incorrectly manufactured ammunition...and if it isn't controlled through a documented manufacturing process, how can anyone be sure of it's affect on the other parts.

The Kahr and the Glock are two ends of the scale in concealability...one is slim, one is blocky...depends on your preference

highlander 5
May 28, 2012, 02:18 PM
I'd stick with the attorney/small claims court idea. The BBB has no legal abilties to help you other than a non binding arbitrator.

mgkdrgn
May 28, 2012, 06:45 PM
I'd stick with the attorney/small claims court idea. The BBB has no legal abilties to help you other than a non binding arbitrator.
... and small claims court has no authority to collect your judgement.

But another thing ... I don't think I'd be talking "out of school" if I were to suggest that if this happened to YOUR gun from this manufacturer, that it hasn't happened to others as well (or will). Giving a lawyer a sniff of a class action suit is like chumming the waters.

Frank Ettin
May 28, 2012, 08:06 PM
... and small claims court has no authority to collect your judgement....No court will collect your judgment for you. That'll be up to you.

danez71
May 28, 2012, 08:21 PM
Wouldnt this be covered by the magnuson-moss warranty act?!


Hey... thats a darn good question!

The magnuson-moss warranty act addresses these types of scenarios (voiding warranties for unrelated mods).


Unless this has something to do with it....

It sounds to me like it was a receiver end plate sing mount that was installed and requires the buffer tube to be removed in order to install it. Some companies (including the one I worked for) would install it free if the lower was sent in which would maintain the warranty or it would be recommended that it be sent to a local dealer for installation.

gremlinx
May 30, 2012, 07:55 PM
Sounds like a Corporation gone mad. I once sold a third Reich iron cross on EBay. when the bidder got it eBay told them that they did not condone selling German ww2 Nazi items and that they were to destroy the medal and they debited my paypal account. Fortunately I always drew my Paypal account to 0 before shipping anything as Paypal has a horrible reputation. Paypal can keep my negative balance account forever. Company's how do not stand with their customers deserve to go out of business. I would post this on the AR15 forum and others to let others know of the shenanigans of this company.

9mmepiphany
May 30, 2012, 09:50 PM
Do we have any news from the brother?

Are they offering to fix it for a fee?

Rmeju
June 1, 2012, 09:09 AM
Yeah, I would also like to know this!

CoRoMo
June 1, 2012, 12:28 PM
It fires more than one round with one pull of the trigger.
...in this state with the ability to fire more than one round with a single application of the trigger...
That's not the case here.
...fireing one shot when you pull the trigger and one shot when you release, like the Mini 14 staple mod.
Unless it has changed, the ATF's position on this type of function is/was that the gun does not fall under the definition of a machine gun. See below:

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?s=&postid=764733

25cschaefer
June 2, 2012, 12:01 AM
Okay, my brother got a call back about his gun and asked to talk to someone higher up in the company and after some talking they agreed to fix the problem and ship it back. I guess they agreed to let the sling mount slide and replace the trigger assembly.

My brother got his gun back and they did replace the whole fire control group, he said it was set up exactly like their "varmint" model that the store had in stock.

All in all, he is happy he got his gun back and the problem solved but, still can't believe they would even try something like that. I wonder how many people would just give up.

Sorry it took so long to answer.

ColtPythonElite
June 2, 2012, 12:06 AM
Call the BBB and file a complaint. .
The BBB is nothing more than a club. It is not a government agency and has no powers. It only mediates disputes between consumers and it's members.

Frank Ettin
June 2, 2012, 12:14 AM
I'm glad it worked out for your brother.

And before anyone gets too wrapped around the axle about this, let's remember that sometimes someone can make a mistake or a bad decision. And so it doesn't hurt to try taking things to the next level.

Taurus 617 CCW
June 4, 2012, 08:50 AM
The workers on the shop floor are usually not the ones who make the decisions, they are only following company policy. Going higher up is the best way to get the results you desire.

rugershootin
January 10, 2013, 04:03 PM
noticed a mention of the mini 14 staple release fire situation and i just had to interject..... i was a federally licensed firearms dealer for 17 years, and in that time i have had PLENTY of interaction with BATFE in person, at the shooting range and in my shop. originally years ago, this subject came up in another thread from i believe badger arms, so decided to try it myself. an BATFE agent supervisor i knew fairly well came by one day and went out to the range with me to shoot sme weapons as i was working on a gun for him at the time, and we needed to check out the new sighting system i had installed. i told him about what i had read online, and he actually SHOWED ME how to do it on an older 180 series mini 14 i kept in the truck. he installed the staple, pulled and released the trigger a few times, and then said "now watch this" , pulled the trigger slowly found the sweet spot and the sucker turned into a bullet hose. he then proceeded to tell me that that trick has been around for as long as the mini 14 had been manufactured, just not many people knew about it. he said it was all in the design of the mini 14 trigger group, and the only difference in the fully auto mini 14 and the AC556 was the AC556 had a slot cut into the secondary sear and a selector switch that pretty much did the same thing as the staple, excpt it put the secondary sear a little farther back allowing or full auto fire, and that putting the staple in between the secondary sear and the primary sear to achieve a "release fire" situation (I.E. fires once with a single pull and fires with the release of the trigger) was 100% LEGAL as far as BATFE was concerned as each time the weapon fired it was a SEPARATE ACTION OF THE TRIGGER. when you fire the weapon in a release fire situation and get the feel for it and it opens up like that, it creates a "bump fire" situation SIMULATING full auto fire, NOT a full automatic situation. it is NOT a "slam fire" type of situation as the way the mini 14 is designed, the bolt has to be locked into battery BEFORE the weapon will fire. it will not "slam fire" as the bolt absorbs the force of the hammer falling if it falls out of battery and the hammer just follows the bolt down. with a decent magazine (not those junk aluminum aftermarket pieces of sh*t) and a little practice you can reach right around 600-700 rounds per minute with little trick.i know of one guy who brought his mini 30 to me after he had cleaned it. he took it to the range to fire it and it pretty much opened up on him and scared him half to death. come to find out, he had a small piece of cleaning patch lodged in between the primary and secondary sear and it did the exact same thing as the staple trick.

this little trick would be useful in a red dawn type situation, or if aliens landed or if we were over run with zombies, BUT this little trick is also EXACTLY why the mini 14 and the M1 carbine are on the new proposed federal assault weapons list. also, while it is legal to do this per BATFE federally, dont think for one second that your local DA or attorney general in your state wont see this as an actual machine gun and prosecute you, even with BATFE letter in hand!

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