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fnogger
July 17, 2017, 17:52
Anyone have (of course!) recommendations on a vendor or three to keep bookmarked for various AR related bits-n-bobs?

Of course, PSA. Its their whole fault I'm doing this. :D

I won't do business again with midway... not that I'd imagine they have fantastic deals on anything.

Who else is worthy of doing business with?

FriendBesto
July 17, 2017, 19:45
BCM
Primary Arms
Rainier

MAINER
July 18, 2017, 07:48
^^Ditto's^^

And;
Brownell's
Model 1 Sales
G and R Tactical

jhend170
July 18, 2017, 08:39
PA... here in the Houston area, bought a lot from them

Valhalla... Bought several barrels from here. They have a fluted Voodoo 18" match grade that shoots lights out, have built several with that barrel.

Joe Bob's... good stuff cheap, just like we like it.

Red Barn Armory... great place for LPKs as you can custom build your order.

AR15 Performance for great barrels on the cheap as well.

jdmcomp
July 18, 2017, 12:46
Joe Bobs

Cheap prices on named merc.

ftierson
July 18, 2017, 13:11
I'd add Vortex Optics to the list...

Forrest

PS But not purchased through Optics Planet...

raubvogel
July 18, 2017, 20:56
Just how bad is Optics Planet?

MAINER
July 19, 2017, 09:02
Just how bad is Optics Planet?

OK Forrest, out with it, tell the story. :D

I find the website cluttered and hard to navigate, but suppose a part of that is my slow 'Puter and not all that great skill with the thing.
I may have bought something from them in the past, but usually find better deals and folks to do business with elsewhere.

Douglas S Graham
July 19, 2017, 09:10
I have used Optics Planet a few times, worked out perfectly. Sale pricing and free shipping on a lot of stuff.

hueyville
July 19, 2017, 09:31
CDNN for name brand parts, good deals in SIG brand AR uppers, stocks, Colt triggers, etc. Red Barn Armory for about anything based on specials of the week, Centerfire Systems on U.S. made parts (like CDNN have to look out for fine China and avoid it) and in occasion even DSA. DSA has expanded into AR's in a big way and always give me my Files discount on AR parts. Quite a few others on single parts but not worth listing the entire wad of them. Since Palmetto started adding sales tax plus shipping to Georgia sales my volume with them has dropped 60% especially with the lack of 6.8 parts. Don't know what your deal is with Midway but when they do blow out sales on optics can be hard to beat beat as with tools but don't buy many parts from them.

fnogger
July 19, 2017, 09:43
CDNN for name brand parts, good deals in SIG brand AR uppers, stocks, Colt triggers, etc. Red Barn Armory for about anything based on specials of the week, Centerfire Systems on U.S. made parts (like CDNN have to look out for fine China and avoid it) and in occasion even DSA. DSA has expanded into AR's in a big way and always give me my Files discount on AR parts. Quite a few others on single parts but not worth listing the entire wad of them. Since Palmetto started adding sales tax plus shipping to Georgia sales my volume with them has dropped 60% especially with the lack of 6.8 parts. Don't know what your deal is with Midway but when they do blow out sales on optics can be hard to beat beat as with tools but don't buy many parts from them.

Just as the 22 shortage was ending about a year ago, Midway suddenly stopped letting you get certain kinds of 22 if you had bought any in the past 6 months. Being able to get a brick here and there during the shortage, they finally get some in stock and I try to get 2 bricks, and order denied 'cause I had just gotten a brick 2 months prior.

So, I told 'em I wasn't happy wtih a retroactive change in policy happening YEARS after it would've actually been helpful to people, and unsubscribed from all of their email lists - or rather, clicked the proper unsubscribe links, confirmed, etc. but they kept sending me their (now) spam.

Since everyone I do business with gets their own email address on my domain, I set up rules to redirect any message to my midway account (midway@mydomain) to Larry Potterfield's published address (which I'm sure some secretary filters for him) and to abuse@midway

This was a year ago - I just checked, and the last message they tried to send me was yesterday...

hueyville
July 19, 2017, 12:18
Never noticed a shortage on rimfire personally except could sell for lots of money and a few specialty rounds had to ration. Had over a quarter million rounds of rimfire in house when panic hit. Been a rule since a teen, buy a brick every trip to Wallyworld and a few boxes or brick of specialty rimfire every trip in LGS. When Wallyworld started selling the cartons of Federal 22 Automatch a carton of those plus a brick of Remimgton Thunderbolts/similar and 100 round box of their 12 gauge field and skeet loads went in buggy every trip, back to buying shotshells again there. Do that for 40 years and see what happens, especially weeks where went to Wallyworld two or three times. Right now have no idea how I will shoot up all the ZQI 7.6251 purchased while they had on clearance. Bought enough to require rebarreling at least two or three battle rifles. Recently price of Aguila Sniper Subsonics has dropped close enough to pre panic price and purchased quote a few bricks thus far. All I use the stuff for is killing squirrel and ground hogs. Was down to 5,000 rounds and about to freak. Same with CCI Green Tag and Federal Premium Ultra Match. Ely Edge is back down to $150 per brick so can put some back in stack. Occasionally need rimfire that I know is one hole group capable or close according to application and rifle. It's a joy to go to public range in occasion with a rimfire, set up targets at 100 yard line and watch the guys with $2,000 German glass on top of $1,500 rifles try to figure out why a 10/22 is eating their lunch on group size.

One day during height of Sandy Hook shortage three panicked guys came into LGS wanting rimfire. Owner said no luck but pointed to me and said I might have some. Walked out to truck and had a brick of Thunderbolts on front seat, guy who obviously had plenty of money and didn't want other two to get it handed me a $100 bill fast and asked if enough. Said yes and he was estatic. Guy number two was bummed and asked if could get more but $75 was all he could afford to pay if had any cheaper flavor. Reached in back seat, grabbed second brick and took his $75. Guy number three said no way he could afford either price and would I sell him one or two boxes so he could take his kids shooting. Reached in back again, handed him a brick and said been a good day, compliments of the house. The $100 customer was pissed and I told him he made his offer, I didn't price them. During Sandy Hook not a single Boy Scout troop did without free rimfire ammo that I work with. All did their annual or bi-annual marksmanship merit badge day. 90% of what I sold went for price customer offered. Gave away more than most sold. When got down to under 175,000 rounds slowed my roll in case the shortage and high prices was going to actually last.

Guns are useless without ammo. I keep 10 to 20 years reloading components in inventory. In 1999 due to Y2K potential panic purchased a 55,000 round pallet of IMI green tip just to have. When a drop gate truck backs up to a residential address with a pallet of ammo the truck drivers are a little freaked. I sign for my pallet, put pallet jack under load and roll in garage where know have a week or two making trips to basement.

Slo cat
July 19, 2017, 21:29
I found Optics Planet to be very disorganized. I ordered a $13 simple mount, they sent me the wrong one (#1). I got their OK for a return, and they sent me the same wrong one again(#2). I thought, screw it, and kept the wrong one and ordered what I wanted from Amazon. Then out of the blue, O.P. sent me another wrong one (#3 strikes). Now I have two mounts for a flat top AR for 1" rings. I'll give them away free for $3 shipping.

PS: I found their return process to be convoluted.

ftierson
July 19, 2017, 23:03
I found Optics Planet to be very disorganized. I ordered a $13 simple mount, they sent me the wrong one (#1). I got their OK for a return, and they sent me the same wrong one again(#2). I thought, screw it, and kept the wrong one and ordered what I wanted from Amazon. Then out of the blue, O.P. sent me another wrong one (#3 strikes). Now I have two mounts for a flat top AR for 1" rings. I'll give them away free for $3 shipping.

PS: I found their return process to be convoluted.

Despite their mixed reputation, I have purchased stuff from Optics Planet over the years that I have been happy with...

Usually, it's something (almost always optics) that I see a good price for on the facebook posts of people I like (and that's often MrGunsnGear). If it weren't for these heads-ups, I'd miss most of the 'good deals.' Since I can order from several firearms distributors, that usually means Vortex stuff (since they're direct sales oriented).

Often, the seller with the good deals is Optics Planet or Cabelas, and I have purchased from both (often 'through' Amazon).

This has generally worked quite well for me, but others have had problems similar to those quoted here. I have a friend who ordered a Serpa-type holster from Optics Planet. They sent the wrong type of holster completely, not just the wrong 'size.' After quite a delay after returning the first one, they sent another exactly the same as the first time. Figuring that the third time was a charm, he returned the second and they shipped him another that was incorrect (and different than the first two). He talked to them by phone a number of times during all this. He finally just bought the holster he wanted somewhere else and still has the last wrong one they sent him.

What dropped them off my 'order from' list has to do with a Vortex Diamondback HP 3-12x42 scope that I ordered from Optics Planet (through Amazon) a couple of years ago. Since I bought it for future use because I didn't need it at the time (and the price was good), it sat in my stash of crap until just after the first of the year (this year). I picked up a green synthetic Howa in 6.5x55mm at a local Sportsman's Warehouse, for a price much cheaper than any dealer price anywhere. I decided to throw the Vortex scope on it to try it out and, when I opened what I thought was the sealed box (it was sealed over the edge with a two inch circle of transparent tape) and pulled it out, I found a used scope (well, at least not new as advertised). It was packed like a new scope, but both front and rear lenses were extremely dirty and there was some tough adhesive on the scope tube where a set of rings had been glued on...

Again, this scope was advertised as new and packaged like new.

I called up Vortex to see what they said about it all. They said that the riflescopes they ship as new are always completely encased in plastic (this is not always true of the Venom and Razor micro reddots and perhaps not for a couple of others). He said that they did sell refurbished scopes to vendors, but they were not sold as new. And he said that the glue from the scope rings would never be shipped out that way even for refurbished units. He also said that the lenses would have been completely cleaned if refurbished by them.

My experiences with them have been very positive and I have had enough conversations with the guys at Vortex to believe them.

They also mentioned that their unconditional lifetime warranty applied and that they would be happy to replace the scope if I had any problems with it.

After carefully cleaning the lenses (they looked just fine after cleaning) and spending half an hour with Goop removing the stubborn adhesive, the scope looks just fine, so I decided to keep it for now. It's sitting back in it's box since I put a Nikon Buckmasters (old series) 3-9x40 on the Howa for now.

I have not talked to Optics Planet about any of this, but they are now off my 'buy from' list as I mentioned. And, to avoid any comments about my being unfair to them in so doing, please feel free to tell it to someone who gives a shit.

But again, to be fair, I have received decent deals on good products from them at times in the past.

Forrest

hueyville
July 20, 2017, 05:43
Only purchased from Optics Planet one time. A matched three piece kit of camera, housing and memory. This was advertised as a package of matched items ready to go at a super low price if purchased all three pieces. Sent proper camera but wrong housing and memory. Called and they wanted to do three returns (one for each item) even though camera was right it could only be sold at price I got in the package. Kept camera, used memory in a device it fit. Purchased correct housing from another vendor and a second camera that fit housing shipped. Everyone I know has an optics planet story, don't even look at their ads anymore.

For O.P., Midway has tagged me with limits on multiple occasions. I keep an account in my name with personal card, account in wifes name on another card and third account in company name with company card. If they run a sale with maximum one, two or four items per customer I just ding them using three different accounts. Considering trying another personal account using a fourth card and P.O. Box.

old_spambo
July 26, 2017, 21:55
I recently purchassed 2 complete uppers, Vortex Optics, BCG's, Backup sights
and a charging handle. The prices, for example, Vortex SPARC's for $140 are
very good.

All the stuff was delivered across the country in a couple days. The uppers
are accurate and their are no issues. I will buy from Palmetto again.

Spambo

Tactical Baron
July 31, 2017, 13:27
Primary Arms: For their sales
Joe Bob's: For their 5% discount to qualifying customers
BCM: Because it's quality, and all the tactical people do it
Midway USA: When I need a part and I don't mind spending a little more for it
Brownells: When I feel like I need to pay more even with a discount
Vortex: They offer a discount to qualifying folks
Rainier: I just like the name

And when in doubt I just Google it, and shift through the pages until I find a deal I like. Sometimes the small websites or stores have outstanding deals.