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Old March 14, 2012, 12:58   #1
urwrldn3d
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Bad Luck with DS Arms

I'll have to split this in to at least two posts. Sorry in advance for being long-winded.

Let me start off by saying this: I'm not writing this to flame DSA. I'm writing this to inform community members of my experience, so they can make an informed decision when looking at DSA as a potential place to purchase firearms/accessories. Having said that, I probably would not have posted this if DSA had rectified my problem in a reasonable amount of time, communicated with me and provided me with a level of customer service that was worth a hoot, considering my particular issues.

I ordered a SA58 18" FAL at the beginning of February from CTD. When I opened the package with my new $1500 dollar rifle in it, I noticed two fit and finish issues right off the bat: the dust cover had some pitting in it and it was also marred where it butts up against the top of the receiver. I let these slide because the dust cover is a cheap part and it wasn't going to impede function.

I also ordered 3 DSA 20rd mags. To my disbelief, they wouldn't even lock in. Upon further inspection the two-piece ejector was out of spec causing the ejector to not sit flush with the rear magwell (ejector block), creating a lip that prevented the DSA mag from locking in. I've inspected about 4 other FALs, both 1 piece ejectors and 2 piece. NONE of them had ejectors that were protruding like mine. Israeli GI mags locked in fine as well as some other milsurp mags I had laying around, but not the mags made by the same people that made my FAL. I ended up using a swiss file and a dremel to get the ejector as flush as I could with the ejector block without removing it. The DSA mags then locked in, but they were so tight, I'd never use them for anything but a range mag. At this point I was starting to have a bit of buyer's remorse.

Now on to the cocking handle lug roll pin. After firing the first 60 rounds through the weapon, when I sat down to clean it, I noticed the cocking handle lug roll pin had walked over halfway out. I took a toothpick and was able to completely remove it. It appeared that instead of using a roll pin punch, someone had just smashed the roll pin until it went in.So, I sat that roll pin aside and used an old trick my Dad taught me... I was able to use a piece of 5/64 drill bit (the solid, non-threaded part) and it didn't walk at all after 60 more rounds through the weapon.

Now for the death blow... I received my DSA extended safety selector and did the install myself. Took about 2 minutes, fit great, seemed to work fine when function testing on an unloaded weapon... So, I then went out to the range with several full 20rd mags. First mag - everything performed flawlessly and I was happy. Second mag - the 12th, 13th and 14th rounds burst fired on a single trigger pull. The 15th round fired normally, then the 16th and 17th rounds burst fired on a single trigger pull. At this point I dropped the mag and cleared the weapon for fear of getting kicked from the range. Was this due to the safety selector or just coincidence, I dunno??
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Old March 14, 2012, 12:59   #2
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At this point I was so disgusted with my whole experience and felt like I had an unsafe weapon, so I decided to email the sales manager that I had spoke to previously about my DSA mags not locking in. This email was sent on Saturday 3 March. The following Monday afternoon I hadn't heard back, so I called. Was informed the sales guy was out for the day. The next day, late afternoon, I still hadn't heard back from him, so I decided to call. I ended up getting him on the phone and he told me he glanced at my email, but hadn't had a chance to really get in to it... whatever that means. Anyway, I told him that the gist of the email was outlining all the issues I've had, my safety concerns and my recent lack of confidence in their products. I went on to tell him that I wanted to cut ties with DSA and I expected a refund for all of the products I had recently purchased for this FAL project, including the FAL itself. He agreed to these terms and asked me to email him my receipts and he would get back to me with what to do next.

On Thursday 8 March I still hadn't received confirmation that he had the receipts, so I once again decided to call. He wasn't in, but I did speak to a guy that told me to go ahead and ship everything to them and include my receipts in the box. I went to FedEx immediately after and shipped everything. Ended up emailing the original sales guy to tell him I had shipped and gave him the tracking #. I should note that shipping firearms makes me nervous, especially such a high-dollar firearm. So I like to be informed immediately upon it's arrival. Not too much to expect I feel.

Monday 12 March I received an email from the sales guy telling me he's sorry for not getting back to me, blah, blah, blah, and that he'll inform me right away when he gets my rifle. According to tracking it showed up about 2 hours after he sent me that email, but alas no call. Tuesday 13 March I called to make sure it had arrived, surprise, the sales guy wasn't in. The girl that answered the phone checked for me and confirmed it was there. I told her that I need to get this issue taken care of and I need my money back seeing how they now have all of the pieces they need. She transferred me to the same guy I spoke to that told me to go ahead and ship it. I was informed that the original sales guy I was working with recently had a baby so he wasn't at the office very much for a while. He said to give him 24 hours and he'd contact me to start my refund process. Well, it's now been 24 hours and I'm still waiting for the call. Thankfully I have no problem being a PITA, so I'll call later if I haven't heard back.

It's great that the original sales guy had a new baby. But if he's not going to be able to follow up with customers, he needs to pass them on to someone else that can assist them in a timely manner. We're talking about a lot of money here, and while I know DSA is busy, I think the sort of issue I had with the burst fire should have garnered a lot more attention than I have gotten.

DSA has serious issues with QC and timely customer service and they've lost this customer for life. Will update as more info comes available.
UPDATE: Should be getting my refund within 36 hours.

Last edited by urwrldn3d; March 14, 2012 at 13:19.
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Old March 14, 2012, 17:58   #3
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DSA definitely did right by you. Can't complain about a full refund.
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Old March 14, 2012, 18:23   #4
urwrldn3d
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No I can't complain about that at all.

For potential DSA customers it's good piece of mind to know that if you do get a lemon, they'll make it right. The main reason I bought from them is because of their warranty/return policy. Just sucks that I actually had to utilize it.
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Old March 15, 2012, 00:17   #5
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I don't understand how it is possible in anyway for the selector to cause your rifle to burst...
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Old March 15, 2012, 17:41   #6
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Thumbs down DSA ISSUE

''IF'' I ever get mine back from them it will be immediately for sale and I will NEVER purchase another product from them.
I believe the best I've seen it written on here from a highly rated member was to the effect '' don't believe a thing they say...''

If you get all your money back and got rid of dealing with them you actually came out way ahead. Don't believe for a minute that this was uncommon practice for them.

I don't believe they did this to help you out as much as cover thier buts. Believe that.

Luckily there are many other quality and service oriented companies out there. If not they could do away with a waiting period just make you buy from them.


I would rather throw rocks or get a slingshot than screw with these guys ever again!

Last edited by paulb2112; March 15, 2012 at 19:39.
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Old April 07, 2012, 20:41   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtyrice View Post
I don't understand how it is possible in anyway for the selector to cause your rifle to burst...

The clearance on the selector for the trigger tail is too deep, the trigger gets pulled back too far, the hammer misses the sear on reset. That's how the full-auto works - the trigger can be pulled further to the rear, but on a machinegun, the auto sear catches the hammer. On a "semi" receiver, the hammer just follows.

Been happening a lot lately - a combination of the DSA trigger and the DSA selector.

Makes me kindof miss the days they just stamped "US Made" on the Austrian parts.
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Old April 10, 2012, 22:28   #8
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Hmmmm,

I've always thought their inch uppers were the next best thing to a real Longbranch upper for an inch rifle..

At least till Coonan makes theirs, I guess
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Old April 12, 2012, 03:47   #9
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So as a guy who is still putting together the dollars and dimes to embark on his first FAL project, all the recent bad press about DSA is exceptionally disheartening.

How do you guys figure the future of the FAL as a supported platform is looking? With the exception of the Coonan receivers, DS Arms is the only game in town for new parts, right?

I guess being a semiauto rifle newb I'm just hesistent about building everything out of used mil-surplus, you know? Maybe that's an unjustified sentiment; you guys tell me.
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Old April 12, 2012, 11:42   #10
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Originally Posted by Will_Power View Post
So as a guy who is still putting together the dollars and dimes to embark on his first FAL project, all the recent bad press about DSA is exceptionally disheartening.

How do you guys figure the future of the FAL as a supported platform is looking? With the exception of the Coonan receivers, DS Arms is the only game in town for new parts, right?

I guess being a semiauto rifle newb I'm just hesistent about building everything out of used mil-surplus, you know? Maybe that's an unjustified sentiment; you guys tell me.
The DSA Rep has for the most part, left the building so I don't know if those questions will ever get answered. Maybe someone from DSA will come back after the realize that the 65k+ members here are their bread & butter. At the moment they seem to be more concerned with filling military contracts and hanging out on AR15.com where their vendor status protects them from having to answer "uncomfortable" questions about their QC & customer service. What told me the real story was when I read a post about the so called "break in period" and the rep admitted that the stuff they sell to foreign militaries goes through a much better QC process than the stuff they sell to us. Now that statement may have been deleted by now or edited and the rep will probably call me a liar for bringing it up but I KNOW what I read and a bunch of you guys read it too.. It's a sad day in the FAL world when the largest supplier of FAL parts in the country abandons the largest & best FAL related website in the world because of 1 thin skinned factory rep who answered questions with insults, smoke & mirrors. Here's a suggestion for the DSA guy since I KNOW he still comes here & lurks.. If you're company has grown too big to care about dealing with us "hobbiests" why not do what some of the other bigshots in the business have done and have a network of distributors handle private sales ? Not that I'm at all impressed with their products, but that's what Tapco is doing these days among others. The smalltime distributors are hungry enough to actually give a shit about their customers, would keep their inventory current, and you bigshot international gun brokers wouldn't have to listen to us peons whining about the quality of your stuff anymore. You already have a few companies peddling your FAL mags. Why not do it with you're entire line of parts ? You have obviously forgotten how your company got it's start...
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Old April 14, 2012, 02:12   #11
Lee Carpentieri
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DSA Issues

I work for a International Weapons Broker, It's not an EZ business to be in, Place a bid to buy stuff only to get blown out of the water by someone else, Even the International scrap dealers are bidding these days as older weapons were made from a better quality of steel compared to the SHIT that is made today.Then you have the UN trying to convince every third world shit hole to sell only to another country or supposedly get paid by the UN to scrap it. As far as 65K Fal Files members, I call BS big time. Most websites are lucky to retain a hundred members at any given time and I'll bet you their are less than half that here.The owners think up names and make it look like a huge membership to attract corporate sponsors. If it wasn't for the corporate advertizers, Who by the way are all gone here too, Most would be mooching off the membership like someone we all know here has done allot. But who cares, The issue is with DSA and yes quality control has hit an all time low with them and YES DSA does have distributors with parts, Try Midway, Brownells, Aimsurplus and many others. Hell even CDNN has started selling DSA 30 rnd mags as of late, And they even sell that shit from TAPCO or is that SHITCO as I heard that more than half their shit is made in Taiwan. I quit dealing with them the minute they started selling that cheap plastic junk they market. But due to politics, No real place to sell military weapons anymore as even the African continent is so over loaded with Ak-47's and with the Russians recently planning on scrapping 47 million Ak-47,s and the Chinese will be scrapping over half a billion real soon as they too have no place to sell them, But It's really going to get real interesting this year to see what OBIMBO try,s to do when he starts selling off more US Military hardware this fall. Anybody for some nicely refurbished F16D's or rehabbed M1 Abrams tanks. It's coming, You watch.

urwrldn3d, Nice post by the way, Hope you got all your money back, At least something good came about this post. Just remember this though, The Fal is a rather unique to make weapon and when properly made it works when most others fail, But time has caught up with it and it,s a shame that it's original manufacture FN Herstahl discontinued the platform in 1988. Maybe one day you'll be able to afford a real one, But by then it just might be worth more as a collector piece than a shooting weapon. Just like a real G-Series Fal or FN Cal has as of late.
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Old April 14, 2012, 09:46   #12
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DSA has sold excellent receivers in the past. Their choice to allow poorer quality out the door today is one of character as much as ability. LMT, the previous subcontractor, had both.

I've seen no issues with the Aussie receivers. DSA receivers are only "poor" when compared to previous DSA receivers. The newer "poor" receivers are still as good or better than anything else on the US market. Coonans are a bit better dimensionally, but not as good cosmetically.

Most problems with DSA parts are at least consistent - so once I am aware of something like the cut in the selector, I can adjust it during the build.

.
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Old April 16, 2012, 18:31   #13
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Originally Posted by Lee Carpentieri View Post
the Chinese will be scrapping over half a billion real soon .

That is going to be a neat trick. For the Chinese to have 500 million Kalashnikov rifles to scrap they would have had to make 24,462 AK rifles per DAY, every day since 1956. That is just over double what the Russians claim for production of all small arms including rifles, pistols, subguns and machine guns during their peak production in WWII when they were operating at rates the world had never seen before and has never seen since. That is also FIVE times the high estimates for Kalashnikov production world wide.
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