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-   -   Why I will never buy a cheap handgun again (http://www.firearmstalk.com/forums/f15/why-i-will-never-buy-cheap-handgun-again-54013/)

pedalmasher 12-23-2011 10:57 AM

Why I will never buy a cheap handgun again
 
I recently purchased a Kel-Tec P-32. I thought the size would be ideal for summer, Florida concealed carry when wearing the typical FL summer wear of shorts and a top. I also liked the fact that the gun was American made.

I took it to the range to and I really liked the way the gun felt & shot, but unfortunately after about 50 rounds, it started dropping the magazine. In that I had 3 magazines with me, I was quickly able to determine that it was not a magazine specific problem.

When I got home, I telephoned Kel-Tec (they work only between the hours of 9-3, a workday they might consider lengthening in the quest for quality). I was pleasantly surprised when they indicated that the problem was the magazine release spring. Frighteningly, they pointed out that sometimes during the manufacturing process, too much material might be honed off but the fix was an easy one. They agreed to send me a new spring and release button.

Here is what I found a bit disturbing. The gal with whom I spoke indicated that she would send me three sets of parts, and I should choose the longest spring. I found it odd that their manufacturing tolerances was so lacking that they would have different sized springs meant for the same firearm. She further stated that it was about a 5 minute fix.

The parts arrived and as advertised each of the 3 springs was slightly different in size. I got out the instructions which turned out to be 16 steps and after pondering the instructions, I sent the firearm back to the factory for repair.

It has been there for two weeks and has yet to have the alleged 5 minute repair applied to the gun. I called and was told that they were swamped and they were trying to get guns out as quickly as possible in that they are closing down for 3 weeks on the 23rd. It looks like that when they finally get back to work, they will have had my gun for 5 weeks, and I have no idea where it is in the hopper of guns needing repair. The fact that they are "swamped" with repairs is not exactly an encouraging fact when considering the purchase of a Kel-Tec product.

I was told prior to the purchase that buying one of these cheapo Kel-Tecs is simply purchasing a starter kit, and from there one must do a "fluff and buff" to ready it for service. I find that concept rather ludicrous and would suggest that Kel-Tec work longer than 6 hour work days and take perhaps only 2 weeks off rather than 3 for the holidays, and perhaps that will enable them to put out a quality, reliable product rather than a "kit" gun.

I am ex law enforcement & military and have been shooting guns since the 50s.
I have never had to have a weapon repaired for any reason, but then again I have always purchased quality. Lesson learned.

As an aside, I mentioned to my local dealer that I was interested in a sub compact 9mm carry gun. He indicated that he carried a Diamondback DB-9. Quick research revealed that they are simply a break-off company from Kel-Tec also based in same FL town. I went with Kahr and I couldn't be more pleased with my PM9 which I recently purchased and has yet to have a single malfunction at the range.

Anyway, I am not looking to start a debate, but simply an outlet for expressing my frustration and perhaps save someone else from making the same mistake. I would love to be able to support an American company based out of my state, but alas, that is impossible under the circumstances.

JohnJak 12-23-2011 12:22 PM

You always get what you pay for.

Byron0022 12-23-2011 12:28 PM

Thanks for posting this. I've almost been tempted to buy a Kel Tec, glad I haven't.

flbandit 12-23-2011 12:54 PM

I tend to agree. I recently bought a Ruger LCP for the same reason; ease of concealment in FL heat. While I can't fault Ruger on quality issues with the LCP, I did not like the gun. I wish I'd spent a bit more money and got something a bit better. I finally bit the bullet and traded it in on a Ruger SR9c, and like it much better.

levelcross 12-23-2011 01:12 PM

John, this seems to be the case more and more. I was lucky with a cheap gun, the store owner is a friend and told me to take it to the range and run 100 rounds thru it and if I still wanted to buy it he would then sell it to me. After 50 rounds I had to clean it to get the next 50 thru it, I hated the gun, it shot like a rapp star, never getting close to what I was expecting. Thank God for good friends and great forums.

fmj 12-23-2011 01:57 PM

So far i LOVE my Kel-Tec PF-9!!!!!

I have ran far more rounds thru this one without a hitch than i ever got thru the Taurus PT-145!!

I have shot similar handguns and this little PF-9, straight out of the box, is far superior to any others i have tried.

boatme98 12-23-2011 02:01 PM

I posted a couple of days ago on another forum about a brand new KT 9mm a friend bought new. I tried to talk him out of it and spend a few more bucks for a proven gun, but he still went for price. Well, the gun is abonimable. (My opinion) Sights are so far off it's pathetic, although fixable. Trigger pull is a joke. I'm guessing 10#+. And to top it off, there was a light primer strike one time in every mag run through it.:eek: Random round. Third, ninth, and anywhere in between cartridge.
And don't say "a KT needs 100 rounds to break in. That's B.S. Any firearm NIB should be ready to go when it leaves the factory. I don't care if it's a KT, a Kimber, or a Sig.
As far as "you get what you pay for", that is usually true, but I've owned an HiPoint .45 that I paid less for than the KT, and it was flawless right out of the box. There are some brands that I just won't buy.

fmj 12-23-2011 02:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by boatme98 (Post 658179)
I posted a couple of days ago on another forum about a brand new KT 9mm a friend bought new. I tried to talk him out of it and spend a few more bucks for a proven gun, but he still went for price. Well, the gun is abonimable. (My opinion) Sights are so far off it's pathetic, although fixable. Trigger pull is a joke. I'm guessing 10#+. And to top it off, there was a light primer strike one time in every mag run through it.:eek: Random round. Third, ninth, and anywhere in between cartridge.
And don't say "a KT needs 100 rounds to break in. That's B.S. Any firearm NIB should be ready to go when it leaves the factory. I don't care if it's a KT, a Kimber, or a Sig.
As far as "you get what you pay for", that is usually true, but I've owned an HiPoint .45 that I paid less for than the KT, and it was flawless right out of the box. There are some brands that I just won't buy.

These "light primer strikes" are most likely caused by the shooter not fully resetting the trigger...

You wanna talk about trigger pull being a joke, try the S&W body guard, for over $100 more the trigger is garbage. My KT pull is smooth if a bit stiff....but its no more difficult than any other DA pistol i have ever shot. (without a trigger job)

TimKS 12-23-2011 02:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fmj (Post 658177)
So far i LOVE my Kel-Tec PF-9!!!!!

I have ran far more rounds thru this one without a hitch than i ever got thru the Taurus PT-145!!

I have shot similar handguns and this little PF-9, straight out of the box, is far superior to any others i have tried.

I agree. I own several Keltec guns including the P3AT and a Sub2K.....never a problem.

I don't think it's wise to publicly bad mouth any product just because of one bad experience. I've had worse problems with a NIB Colt 1911, but won't downgrade Colt for their quality control on a single gun.

fmj 12-23-2011 02:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TimKS (Post 658205)
I agree. I own several Keltec guns including the P3AT and a Sub2K.....never a problem.

I don't think it's wise to publicly bad mouth any product just because of one bad experience. I've had worse problems with a NIB Colt 1911, but won't downgrade Colt for their quality control on a single gun.

EVERY manufacturer has their issues. I have heard people talk smack about their personal bad experiences, Remington, S&W, Kimber etc. etc. The fact is, when your cranking out MILLIONS of units a year your gonna have a bad apple every no and again, but that doesnt mean the entire bushel is bad.


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