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Old December 13, 2012, 11:07 PM   #1
tahunua001
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my experience with Special Interest Arms

hello all. I am putting this out just as a public service announcement. for the last year or so I have been enamored by the idea of a bolt action rifle in 45ACP. well doing some research I found little in the way of factory offered models but I did come across special interest arms, a small outfit in NV that specializes in modifications to enfield rifles that offers a 45ACP conversion kit. this spring I was able to piece together a no parts matching enfield no4 to use as a guinea pig and set to work appropriating the necessary conversion kit.

SIA does not accept debit/credit cards and being a product of generation X I don't have a checkbook so I paid via cashiers check. everything started off well enough. I was in no hurry and Rich(as far as I know the owner and only employee) was waiting on barrels so it was no big deal when he said there would be a few weeks wait(this was back in MAY). every couple weeks I would write an email and he would respond in a couple days with an update on my status but then things started to degrade.

several emails would go unanswered until I started getting "less that civil" and he would come back with another set of excuses and promises that it would not be much longer. finally after a 2 month lapse in communication in the first week of October he told me that he had been injured and was behind schedule but that my order was done and would be shipping that week. my package never arrived and he failed to respond to any of my status requests and finally after 2 months I made my complaints public by posting on several fine forums(including this one).

within hours, Rich contacted me by email, very angry and accusing me of slander. he offered no explanation as to why my order had not shipped back in October as promised but he did say that he had intended to offer a free "more robust" ejector upgrade to apologize for the long wait but since I was in such a hurry he would ship my order immediately without the upgrade. 4 days later I had the conversion kit at my door step and during installation I ended up breaking the ejector which was not upgraded. without the ejector the rifle is virtually useless. I refuse to contact SIA for a replacement as it will probably take me another 6 months of bickering to receive it. I have no idea what I'm going to do with the thing now but I can honestly say that I will never do business with special interest arms ever again.
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Old December 14, 2012, 12:56 AM   #2
the rifleer
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Good to know. I certainly understand where you are coming from and think you did exactly the right thing. I'd still send an email, you might get it for free.
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Old December 14, 2012, 03:45 PM   #3
CowTowner
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I have a 7.62x39 Russian or "Enfield K" conversion on order for an old No.4 Mk1* Enfield from them as well.
Parts to be converted were shipped to, and received by SIA in July, 2012. I haven't gotten my kit yet and no status request has been given a good response.
I'm just going to wait until the kit arrives and finish the project.
Would I do business with them again? Probably not.
Was I expecting the kit to be shipped to me within a specified period of time? No I wasn't.
Why not?
Because gunsmiths and custom parts take time to build/modify/get turned around. And because no definite time frame was offered or inferred.
It's a project for the heck of it and not a needed piece of hardware.
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Old December 22, 2012, 07:43 PM   #4
7.62 Nato
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Has anyone checked, or filed complaints with the BBB ? I wonder what kind of track record this co. has.
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Old December 22, 2012, 07:58 PM   #5
tahunua001
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SIA is not accredited by BBB and I was thinking about filing one after the fact but then in their complaints section they say that they only take complaints against non accredited companies to help arbitrate in ongoing disputes so since I already got the kit I doubt they would do much.
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ignore my complete lack of capitalization. I still have no problem correcting your grammar.
I never said half the crap people said I did-Albert Einstein
You can't believe everything you read on the internet-Benjamin Franklin
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Old December 23, 2012, 02:31 PM   #6
FairWarning
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Thanks for the heads up!

A useful public service announcement for sure....
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Old December 31, 2012, 03:29 AM   #7
Richard SIA
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How nice, barrels take six months to show up......

How nice, my barrels are taking six months to show up instead of the quoted five weeks!
Several orders were placed over a period of months, next week they will all be delivered at the same time.
But I'm the one getting slammed on-line.
"It" really does roll down hill!

FYI, Panic buying for gun parts did not start two weeks ago, for barrels it started at the beginning of 2012.

It seems that some folk need to check their firewalls and 'approve' mail from companies they want a reply from.
Email from people I have already gotten mail from is also sometimes redirected to my SPAM filter until I find out and approve them again, I do not know why.

I am getting away from time consuming hand fitted products to concentrate on new items that are simpler or more profitable.

The 7.62x39 "K" is being phased out.
It was a good product, but the volume/return is not there to continue with it unless it is also suppressed.

My arm and leg injuries are nearly recovered, the stitches are out, I am able to walk again, thanks for your concern. /s

While recovering I set up a spreadsheet to track all orders.
As stated on my site, they are going out in the order received.

For future reference, the old style .45 ejector is as follows.
MSC Part #: 05588371
Big Book Page #: 1343
Manufacturer: Gibraltar.
Now anyone who forgets to reinstall the bolt properly may order as many as they like without having to contact me.

The new style ejector should be impossible to break.

Happy new year.
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Old December 31, 2012, 08:45 AM   #8
jonnyc
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Richard,
FWIW, I have only heard praise for your end product, and I am about a 95% satisfied customer, but your communication could get a serious upgrade. You need to "talk" to your unhappy customers, they are the ones who make the most noise.
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Old January 2, 2013, 08:56 AM   #9
CowTowner
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Richard,
As I stated, I'll finish the project when the kit arrives and I can finish it. I'm not rushing anyone because quality work takes time.
Glad to hear you're healing nicely. And for some reason I'm not surprised the barrels are taking longer than promised.
Hang in there and Happy New Year.
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Old January 2, 2013, 10:04 AM   #10
Strafer Gott
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It sounds like this thread has a reasonable resolution. Hope 2013 works out as well. Happy New Year!
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Old March 19, 2013, 03:44 PM   #11
CowTowner
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Update to my previous posts

Richard will now know who I am and I'm good with that.

I received my Enfield K kit yesterday.
Opened it up and played with it a little, but since there were no "instructions", I figured I'd send Richard an email today and ask what this, that and the other did and how so I understood the kit better.
Instead of replying to the email, he called me and answered all my questions in plain English. After our conversation I felt I had gotten excellent customer service.

Thanks for going the extra mile, Richard.
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Old March 19, 2013, 05:32 PM   #12
tahunua001
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interesting, good to know he's stepped his game up.
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ignore my complete lack of capitalization. I still have no problem correcting your grammar.
I never said half the crap people said I did-Albert Einstein
You can't believe everything you read on the internet-Benjamin Franklin
Bean counters told me I couldn't fire a man for being in a wheelchair, did it anyway. Ramps are expensive.-Cave Johnson.
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Old March 19, 2013, 06:53 PM   #13
CowTowner
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I guess I should also point out that the Enfield K conversions are no longer available.
You will notice this if you visit his website at http://www.specialinterestarms.com/index.php?page=faq
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Old March 19, 2013, 09:13 PM   #14
tahunua001
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yeah I believe by the new years resurrection of this thread appeared the K kit was already being phased out.
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ignore my complete lack of capitalization. I still have no problem correcting your grammar.
I never said half the crap people said I did-Albert Einstein
You can't believe everything you read on the internet-Benjamin Franklin
Bean counters told me I couldn't fire a man for being in a wheelchair, did it anyway. Ramps are expensive.-Cave Johnson.
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