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Gunsmith work gone bad...opinions needed

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by billyp, Aug 19, 2007.

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  1. billyp

    billyp Member

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    I recently had my new Meprolight tritium sights put on my Khar mk9. The smith charged me $50.00, which I thought was a little steep since all he did was use a drift punch to mess up the finish on the gun and the sights. He also did not sight the gun back in to make sure what he did worked. This work was done about 3 weeks ago and I just got the chance to go shoot today. The gun has been in the holster in my car with no one else touching it.

    I headed to the range and shot 6 rounds and couldn’t hit squat, so I put a fresh target up and shot another 12 rounds; still with really poor groups. I start looking at my gun and noticed the front sight had slid all the way to the left. I give it a little push and it falls out onto the bench. Great, brand new sights not much good it is doing me there. I pick it up and put it back in the dovetail and it slides freely back and forth. And so ended my day of shooting.

    Now I am at a loss. Do you guys think this is something I should try and fix or should I have another go round with the shop to see if they will fix the problem.

    If you do suggest fixing it myself I would appreciate any input as to how because I really cannot think of any good way to affix the front sight back in there short of some sort of epoxy or Loctite.

    Mind you this is a pretty darn reputable shop, I'm not going to say any names just yet because the whole thing has not fully transpired and I really need some opinions and facts before I even think about dragging someone’s good name in the mud without justification.

    Thanks,
    Billyp
     
  2. trueblue1776

    trueblue1776 Member

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    You need to go tell the shop something is seriously wrong. If the sights are that bad they will fix them if they care about their business.

    $50. for a sight install is actually a pretty fair price, albeit not for the install you got :D
     
  3. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    I would probably just put the sight in and stake it, but then I am not much for how something looks on my own guns as long as it works. There are other ways, like Loctite or some other glue, or using a sharp tool to "dig up" the surface under the sight to reduce the size of the slot. You can also tap the front and back edges of the slot to do the same thing. (Be careful using glue; you might want to adjust that sight later on.)

    As to taking it back, that is up to you. You do not sound like you are happy with their work, so you might not want to give them another chance. On the other hand, they should fix the front sight problem at no cost. Your choice.

    Jim
     
  4. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Member

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    Granted I have only been shooting for a few years I have never seen a sight install where they damaged the finish of the slide or where it wasn't then sighted in by the smith. That sounds pretty poorly done already. Also if the sights come right off the way you say the gunsmith should be held accountable for such a blatantly bad job.

    I have no problem doing things myself, unless I have already paid someone else to do it for me.
     
  5. medmo

    medmo Member

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    You can stipple the dovetail surfaces of the sight that contacts the dovetail in the slide. Use a shap center punch and a light ball peen hammer. If something needs to be fitted always try working on the least expensive part in case there is a mistake. In this case it would be the sight not the slide. Having said all of this..... I would bring it back the guy who did the work and ask that he make it right with a new sight.
     
  6. gudel

    gudel Member

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    Would you trust the same person who screwed up your gun in the first place?
     
  7. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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    The guy sounds like a bozo.

    I would say lesson-learned, and never let him touch my guns again.

    Fix it yourself, or find somebody else who is competent.
     
  8. flashman70

    flashman70 Member

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    I agree with WEG - chalk up the $50 to experience and find a good gunsmith. I wanted to have the smith at my range put night sights on my P2000, so he ordered them, I brought the gun in and next day he calls and says that neither of the two sight pushers he has fits the H&K. So I paid him for the sights and took them to a "pure" gunsmith that charges top dollar, but is very good (does all the work for the local PDs), and he did the work. I just appreciated that the first smith didn't try to do something he didn't have the right equipment to do.
     
  9. Cliff47

    Cliff47 Member

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    I had some work done on a Hi-Power a couple of years back, new sights, commander hammer, CNC machined sear, extended manual safety. I relied on the word from a number of family/friends as to who to trust with my firearm. When the pistol was returned to me, the rear dovetail (I have no idea how they managed to cut it off-square) was packed with epoxy to take up the extra space, the front sight was loose, and again epoxy held in place. The rest of the work was satisfactory. The rear sights were set so far back that they interfered with the hammer.

    I took the firearm to a local gunsmith, he ordered a new slide, sights and did the job correctly in half the time that the other shop had taken. I have a pistol that is dead accurate, reliable, and I trust with my life (if need be).

    To this day, I don't trust the word of the family/friends, and pass the word on this particular shop's quality of work. The fellow that I took the pistol to later has sold his business.
     
  10. thebaldguy

    thebaldguy Member

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    I would take it back and ask for my money back; or, give him a chance to fix it properly NOW.
     
  11. rreynol

    rreynol Member

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    I had a similar situation with a local shop installing night sights on a sig p226. Everything looked fine when I picked it up. I Immediately went to the range and put some rounds through it. I'm not a great shot but something just wasn't right. The rear dovetail wasn't aligned right and by the time I got through 100 rounds, the front sight was freely sliding around. Pointed this out to them and gave them a second shot. Needless to say, I wasn't happy with the second attempt either. The front sight was peened to hold it in place (dinged all up) and overall it was a piss poor job. I wasn't happy so I chalked it up to experience. I bought another front sight and the sig sight pusher and did it myself. I was a lot happier with the job I did . I too have an MK9 and when I decide to add night sights to it, Kahr is probably the only one I'll trust to do it right.
     
  12. tydephan

    tydephan Member

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    Take it back to him and explain the situation, including the marred finish.

    Anyone can make a mistake. Give him a chance to make it right. If he doesn't, lose his number.

    I had a similar experience with new trijicon sights I had installed (only $15, BTW) on my Glock 19 by the Gander Mountain Smitty. A few weeks later the front site became very loose. I took it back, explained the situation to him, and he fixed it on the spot - no questions asked. For that reason, they will continue to get the business for some of my gunsmithing needs.

    Good luck to ya.
     
  13. denfoote

    denfoote Member

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    If he used a drift punch, then he's already at fault!! Kahr has a special tool to install/adjust sights, just like Glock does!!
    How do I know this??
    I had new sights put on my MK9 recently, the gunsmith, who is competent, by the way, called me and told me the job would take longer than expected because he had to wait for THE PROPER TOOL!!

    Kahr sent him the part, he put my sights on and all is right with the universe!!
    BTW, he only charged $15, so methinks you got hosed in more ways than one!!
     
  14. Gary G23

    Gary G23 Member

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    A "reputable shop" would not use a drift punch for a sight install. Find someone that knows what they are doing or do it yourself.
     
  15. Neophyte1

    Neophyte1 Member

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    Take it Back

    billyp: Sir; the obvious; take it back.
    Any responsible business wants you as the customer.
    Take it back; show it to who-ever returned it to you;
    This is unacceptable.
    We as consumers need a good place: ie responsible business,
    I for one; would/will evaluate my next visit on the handling of said issue.
    My little bit of dollars can go some where else.
    My voice can, and will carry a note of either content/discontent. Specialty Shops are aware.
    Give the shop a chance to repair; be prepared to finalize your position.

    Craig
     
  16. denfoote

    denfoote Member

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    I had occasion to take a gander at my MK9 manual and it says not to use a drift punch, but to use a sight adjustment tool. He might have damaged the dovetail!!!

    Your smith is a goof!! I'd make his shop buy you a new slide!!
     
  17. Powderman

    Powderman Member

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    Billyp, and Cliff47, what gunsmith did you use? PM me if you wish, I have a reason for asking. :)
     
  18. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    No. If he doesn't, spread the word, including the name of the 'smith. Post it here, post it everywhere you ordinarily post. If you give him the chance to make it right, and he does not, he needs to go out of business, sooner rather than later.

    A good businessman will do the right thing without being coerced. A bad one will only understand a loss of business.
     
  19. mballai

    mballai Member

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    I would let the gunsmith correct it if he can. I'm not sure I want to do a return visit for more work if what you describe is so.

    Gunsmiths aren't necessarily anymore consistent than any other craftsman--none of them are going to be perfect, but you need to hold them up to honoring their workmanship.

    Every once in a while it might take a couple of trips to get something right if a problem isn't apparent. I've seen this personally. It's just like medicine. You need the right diagnosis.
     
  20. billyp

    billyp Member

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    Second trip to the smith

    I took the gun back to the smith last week...he closes at 4:30pm so I have to leave work early two times to drop off an pick up the gun.

    I pick up the gun and it looks like a punch and tried to draw the metal on the sight dovetail just as was sugested here. I figured all is well, and left.

    I take the gun to the range again today shoot 12 shots and the thing is loose again. I also noticed that the sight is no longer square, meaning that when you line everything up the outside of the top right corner on the front sight does not align with the inside top right corner on the rear sight. It is raised up and not "flush".

    Im getting to the point where this is becoming a problem. I'm going to talk to him one more time and see what he says. At this point I dont want anymore damage to my slide or front sight and I just want it fixed.

    Thanks for all the replies about this.

    Billyp
     
  21. Neophyte1

    Neophyte1 Member

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    burr

    billyp: Sir; now I would have a burr up my behind.
    ask for your money back and all the replaced parts
    with the Gun put back like it was.
    Find another Gunsmith.

    Craig
     
  22. comeandtakeit

    comeandtakeit Member

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    Send your gun to Kahr they'll probably replace the slide and have to put new night sights on it. Then give that so called gunsmith a copy of the receipt and make him reimberse you.
     
  23. 2400

    2400 Member

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    If he refuses to reimburse you, take him to small claims court. There is no reason you should pay for his inability to do quality work.
     
  24. Ghost Tracker

    Ghost Tracker Member

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    Kahr makes no bones about telling owners to ONLY allow the factory to install sights. Their system is NOT a conventional wedge & dovetail interface. If this guy (the so-called gunsmith) accepted the job & then the money without being aware of this...you shouldn't have to pay for his "learning curve". He should refund your $50 plus whatever it costs to correct his mistake back to original condition.
     
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