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San Diego: Discount Gun Mart--Repeated poor service

Discussion in 'Smart Shopper' started by SandyGlock, Jan 17, 2003.

  1. SandyGlock

    SandyGlock

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    I understand that everyone makes mistakes, but the service I have recieved from the above-mentioned store has been repeatedly poor and disrespectful. I have been a polite and paying customer( $1K/year + range fees) and continue to get the shaft from these guys at nearly every transaction.

    1) Last year I called to confirm that they would handle a transfer for me before I bought a rifle off of gunbroker.com. After the shipper had undertaken considerable effort on his part to accomodate the specific order I needed, I went down to DGM to do the paperwork. When I got to the store they told me I was missing some documentation so I went home to retrieve it. Back at the store, we completed the paperwork and were about to process payment. The manager came out and told me that he would not do the deal because it was a new firearm that he would only cover his costs from and not profit. I explained that I had called ahead of time and discussed this specific matter with a salesperson and that I was reassured that they would do the deal because, it was a custom package they would not do for the price the shipper would. It did not matter, they would not do the transfer. This put me in the position of having to inform the shipper who had been extremely helpful that the deal was a bust. No other dealers in the area would help out either. Lane Saint John was the shippers name and I would happily do more business with him.

    2)This winter I purchased a Savage 12FV from DGM, there was a problem with the tension of the internal magazine lips. (pictures: http://www.glocktalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=118480) I brought the rifle back to the store to be shipped under warranty to Savage. I called savage a month later to check the status of the rifle and was told the rifle was not there. I called DGM and was told that the rifle had not been shipped yet and that they were waiting on a work order authorization from Savage. I called Savage to get things moving and was told that the authorization was a verbal "yeah, send us the rifle" and they had nothing that needed to be "sent" to DGM, unless they were sending a 16 inch cannon or SAM missile. My rifle is only a .243 . Another call to DGM revelaed they just had forgotten about it. I was relieved when I was told that the Gunsmisth would fix it free of charge. I made the pickup that afternoon and the Smith said it was just a 15 minute job and he just had to hit up one screw. Over at the range I tested my rifle out and found that it still ejected the second round about 60% of the time. I left town for about 3 weeks and called DGM today upon return to see if the Smith would tighten whatever screw he did last time to ensure the rounds stayed in the magazine. I was told "no problem, see you in a few minutes." I went to DGM today and was told the Smith was busy. I told the clerk that I had just called 20 minutes ago and was told to come on down. He went in the back and said "yeah, he is busy he just has a lot of work and if he takes your rifle then everyone else is going to get delayed too." I told them that he had not finished my rifle yet and that I would appreciate it if he could just ask the smith if he could take a couple minutes to do this job right once and for all. he replied "yeah, he's just too busy right now, you can leave it here and we could get it back to you in about 4 weeks." I left.

    Sorry Discount Gun Mart, I'm not coming back and I will relate this experience to everyone else I shoot with. For other SD shooters, South Bay Rod and Gun Club has a yearly membership of $50 for unlimited use and a range out to 300 yards. I am going there from now on and it won't be hard to find a better dealer either.
     
  2. TKM

    TKM Shiny Member Lifetime Member

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    Just another ball of mud.
    I feel your pain.

    I tried to order a nice Volquartsen .22 a few years back and ended up floating these guys an interest free loan for a couple of months. Scott Volquartsen responded to an email I eventually sent him stating that he'd never heard of these guys and didn't know what they'd done with my money.

    I've heard of others going through similar problems, but it'll never happen to anybody I ever speak to first.

    Too bad, as I've still got a Ruger I bought from them when they still had a shop in P.B. Something must've happened between then and now.
     

  3. PenHolder

    PenHolder

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    Last year, I bought a new pistol from them, paid-in-full. I dutifully counted off my ten-by-24-hour waiting period as required by state law, and then headed down to complete the purchase.

    I arrived several hours before the usual closing time. There was a notice on the door about closing early in order to accomodate some party, which was news to me. (You'd think a place like a gun store would have posted it more than one waiting period in advance.) "No worries," I thought, "there's still ten minutes or so before closing, the door is still open, and the OPEN sign is lit."

    I strolled in, laid down my receipt, and politely asked to pick up my gun. The gentleman working at the counter gave me this pained look and said, "Uhh, I can't do a pick-up now." When I asked why that was, he glanced toward the rear of the store, gave me some mush-mouthed response about moving something in the way, and then turned back to me and asked if I could come back another time. (As if I'd say, "Never mind, keep it, I hope it's fun!")

    This was really inconvenient; I'd timed things so I could pick up the weapon the weekend before an extended trip out of town. Picking it up when I returned wasn't an option since it would have been be past the state's 20-day limit, and I would have had to pay new fees and wait for another waiting period (which would be a bit too much insult to endure).

    I ended up juggling my schedule and running down there the next morning, but being forced to do so on account of someone being too lazy to march to the safe and dig out my box -- or someone else deciding to close the safe and cut out ten minutes early -- really angered me. I was a paying customer, the shop was "OPEN", and it's not as if I came in a few minutes before closing and demanded to weigh each of the cartridges in a
    case of ammo. I was asking for five minutes of their time, enough to dig out and sign two forms, but that was too much.

    That's my tale of poor service from them. A friend of mine more recently bought a gun there, and also had a hassle with one of the workers when trying to do the pick-up. By the description, it was the same guy I dealt with. There are a couple of cool people working there, but the jerks make a much longer-lasting impression.
     
  4. SandyGlock

    SandyGlock

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    One thing I have always notice there is that they have a constantly revolving door of new employees who are in a state of total perma-confusion. Like it is their first day on the job EVERY DAY! Too bad, on a lighter note, it has forced me to find a new range that is even better, and more enjoyable to shoot at.
     
  5. wayne5plus1

    wayne5plus1 Marketing Guy

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    what other places are there in san diego? will be there in two weeks...
     
  6. PenHolder

    PenHolder

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    wayne5plus1: the San Diego area has a decent selection of gun stores, at least relative to other parts of CA. Wherever you touch down, you can find a copy of the Yellow Pages and look under "Guns". =)

    That said, some of the alternatives are:

    American Shooting Center (store+range), http://www.gotammo.com/

    California Police Equip. Co., http://www.capoliceequip.com/

    El Cajon Gun Exchange, http://www.elcajongun.com/

    Iron Sights (store+range), http://www.iron-sights.com/

    So Cal Gun, http://www.socalgun.com/

    (Whoa, this Internet thing is about to catch on...)
     
  7. wayne5plus1

    wayne5plus1 Marketing Guy

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    was looking for feedback for ranges out there...
     
  8. PenHolder

    PenHolder

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    wayne5plus1: as far as indoor ranges in SD go, American Shooting Center is probably the nicest, but it's more expensive than the others. It has (I think) 16 lanes, it's 25yd instead of 15, rifles and shotguns are allowed, and the range is actually supervised. I see more families, cops, etc. at ASC; I see more yahoos at Discount horsing around, shooting across the lanes, and things like that.

    Both ASC and Discount have a pretty small selection of rentals. Iron Sights has a massive selection of rentals -- more models for rent than some shops have for sale -- 24 lanes, and rifles/shotguns are okay, but it's much farther from the metro area. Iron Sights also has its selection of yahoos, I estimate more than American but less than Discount.

    There's also the Magnolia Range out in Santee, http://www.magrange.com/ but I haven't gone there. It looks pricey. As far as outdoor ranges go, there's Project 2000 http://www.project2000range.com/ and South Bay Rod & Gun Club http://members.cox.net/southbayrodandgunclub/, both of which are out in the boondocks. (Project 2000 is technically indoor, but it's more like an outdoor range with a roof than a regular indoor range.) SBR&GC is within 3-5mi of the border with Mexico, so if you head down there be ready to deal with the Border Patrol.

    I hope this helps.
     
  9. wayne5plus1

    wayne5plus1 Marketing Guy

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  10. BarrySDCA

    BarrySDCA

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    I’ve never had anything but great experiences from DGM, and I’ve been going there for a few years now. I purchased my G30 from Jabie (the owner). Long after I purchased it, it started misfiring. No problem – Jabie took the thing apart and fixed it, free of charge.

    I had a BIG problem with my CCW also. (I didn’t have my Glock at the time) The only gun I had was a S&W 442, that I didn’t even purchase from DGM. S&W sent DGM a new gun, which meant I had to qualify again and go through the 10 day hold. The problem was that the sheriff was only doing qualifications once a month and my 10 day hold expired about a day after the day of qualifications. This meant I would go one month without my CCW unless I could get the store to send someone with me to the sheriffs range.

    No problem – Jabie arranged for an employee to escort me to the range and qualify with it again, and then take the gun back to his store to finish the 10 day wait. Again, FREE OF CHARGE. He even processed the DOJ papers FREE OF CHARGE.

    I have nothing but great experiences at DGM and would not hesitate to recommend it to EVERYONE.
     
  11. FloridaG31

    FloridaG31 Humble Glocker

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    Just to be fair, I think the owner of this place should know what's going on. I emailed the general cust svc address and asked for the owner's name/address or his personal email address. If I get it, I'll link this page to him.

    Here's their pitch: "Let our courteous, professional sales staff serve YOU."


    ;g ;m ;g
     
  12. FloridaG31

    FloridaG31 Humble Glocker

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    I emailed the owner a few weeks back. He seemed to be interested in finding out about the problems.

    But, since he knows that this thread is here and has ignored it, I guess we can assume he doesn't care about his customers one bit ! ;g
     
  13. JOLLY53

    JOLLY53

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    JUST MY $.02, OF ALL THE STORES I HAVE VISITED IN SAN DIEGO, I HAVE HAD THE BEST EXPERIENCES WITH CALIFORNIA POLICE EQUIPTMENT (CPE). QUALITY CUSTOMER SERVICE, FRIENDLY AND VERY HELPFUL.

    ONE OCCASSION COMES TO MIND. I WAS PURCHASING A G23 AND WANTED TO CHECK THE FEEL OF VARIOUS IWB HOLSTERS. I THINK IT WAS THE MANAGER THAT WAS HELPING ME OUT, ANYHOW, HE HAD NO PROBLEMS WITH ESCORTING ME AND A CO-WORKER OVER TO THE HOLSTERS AREA TO LET ME TRY ON A FEW HOLSTERS WITH THE GUN INSIDE. VERY HELPFUL AND FRIENDLY PEOPLE OVER THERE. GOOD PEEPS IN MY OPINION. NOT LIKE SOME OF THE OTHER STORES IN THE AREA, WITH VERY "OPINIONATED" STAFF.
     
  14. Jabie

    Jabie

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    As the owner of Discount Gun Mart, ever since I started this business 21 years ago, my motto and attitude has been that customer service comes first. There are three separate issues here, I will address each issue separately.

    BTW, my lack of response was not because I do not care about this thread, I registered as a user on 4/15 right after I received the email from FloridaG31, went through all the registration steps and after several emails to the webmaster/moderator for some reason it still took several days for them to activate my account.

    Issue #1: Sandyglock & Savage 12FV

    It is unfortunate that when Mr. McKay called to do a FFL dealer transfer, he was not properly questioned and the type of FFL transfer was not completely qualified by the person who first helped him. Our normal procedure is to explain our policy in the initial phone conversation with every person who calls about a dealer transfer; I am not sure why this was not done. Obviously when he came in to affect the transfer, the person helping him assumed that this procedure had been followed and that the transaction was qualified as to what we will and will not transfer and continued to help him as if this was the case. When he realized that this transfer was one we would not normally do, he stopped and checked with the manager to see if some other arrangement had been made.

    Concerning the actual transfer, buying a gun off the internet and asking the local gun store to use their license to transfer a gun that the store sells is akin to going to a restaurant, bringing your own steak you bought on sale at the supermarket, asking them to cook it and expecting to only pay for the waiter’s tip and taxes.

    Obviously since no other gun store in town would do it either, we aren’t too far off base with our policy.

    The minimal handling fee that we charge for a qualified FFL dealer transfers really does not cover the labor costs involved with the amount of paperwork that California and the Feds require. We really only do it for a service to our customers to transfer in a gun that we do not sell.

    As far as the repair on the Savage 12FV, the salesman never spoke to the gunsmith, when he went back, the gunsmith was on the phone, and the salesman took it upon himself to write the gun up for a repair which is normal procedure. There was a basic lack of communication between the salesman and the customer. The customer needed to say: "The gunsmith is expecting me, he said to bring it right down". When the gunsmith got off the phone and came out, he was told the customer had already left in a huff.

    We still are more than willing to repair the firearm while the customer waits. Merely call and ask for Robert or myself (Jabie) and we will take care of it. Incidentally, Savage does NOT reimburse us for repairs or shipping to the factory for repairs. These are costs that we incur and absorb in the interest of customer service.

    As far as the new employee comment you make in a later post, we had several experienced and fully trained employees that were either in the military or were military reservists. We lost two fulltime assistant managers in December of 2002 that were activated for the war in Iraq. This happened with no notice and no hope of finding and training replacements before they left. It is extremely difficult to find qualified people that have the proper attitude and demeanor that we need for good customer service. When we do find those people, they usually have no gun knowledge, so we have to train them from ground zero. We will not hire somebody just because they have worked in a gun shop before. My past experience is that all too often these people are the ones who are opinionated and lack customer service skills. This is not what we look for in a salesman.

    In conclusion, is there anything I can do for you to resolve this issue or to assuage your displeasure with us? If so please call me.

    ISSUE #2: TKM & Volquartsen rifle

    The simple fact is of the matter is, of the 30 or so Volquartsen guns we have sold over the years, we have not purchased ANY directly from Volquartsen. It is no wonder they do not know who we are. Like almost all guns sold, we buy them from a distributor. Volquartsen does sell dealer direct, but there are advantages to buying through a distributor, including often the price is lower and the wait is usually shorter because the guns get shipped out of the distributor’s stocking order which typically gets ordered early in the year.

    We order Volquartsen guns from a distributor who we deal with regularly. We just pick up the phone, tell them what we want and when the guns become available, we are shipped what we want.

    But if you feel that the purpose of our dealing with you was that we were just using your money interest free, I would be happy to pay you interest on your deposit for the time we had it. Just come in and see me and I will personally handle it for you.

    You probably bought your Ruger from me in PB. I am sorry that you feel the way you do. I would like the chance to make this right with you. Feel free to call me directly.

    Additionally, if my memory serves me correctly, the gun you ordered came in just a few weeks after you backed out of the transaction and was sold to another customer. We have at least one new Volquartsen rifle in stock right now and Volquartsen still does not know who we are.

    ISSUE #3: Penholder & gun pick up problem

    I take full responsibility for this incident. The early closing notice was posted one week ahead. In retrospect, 10 days would have made more sense. This is the one night of the year that we close early. This was the night of our company Christmas party. I gave permission to the closing crew to go ahead and start putting the guns away early, but I also told them to not turn anybody away until the posted closing time. I truly apologize for the inconvenience. That night at the Christmas party, when the closing crew related that a customer came in after the vault was closed and agreed to come back later to pick up his gun (you) I was aghast that you left without your gun, but their story that they relayed to me was that you had no problem whatsoever coming back. I am sorry that you had to juggle your schedule to come back down. I am sending you a message under separate cover with some range passes to make up for the hassle.

    As an example of our usual commitment to customer service, this last December, at 10:30 PM on Christmas Eve, Robert, the store manager came down with his family and unlocked the store so that a customer could pick up a gun that was to be a Christmas gift and whose waiting period did not end until after closing time.

    COMMENT RE: BarrySDCA:

    I had never met Barry before he needed help with his CCW problem. He explained the situation and I was more than willing to help him. This is the type of customer service we are in the habit of giving customers.

    Due to having a range and a busy store, we are open 362 days a year, seven days a week, 11-13 hours a day, not counting 1 hour a day for setting up and 1 hour a day for putting all of the guns in the safe at night. This means that we have to have several shifts of competent, courteous people to keep the store manned. Unfortunately, this is a tall order. I can’t be here all the time, nor can my store manager, so as a result, things don’t always go as planned. But I am always willing and happy to try to fix any problem given the chance.

    If you have any customer service problems, please do not hesitate to call me directly: Jabie Gray 619-276-8730 x 104
     
  15. PenHolder

    PenHolder

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    My opinion of DGM just went up a couple of notches; I'll certainly do business there again. I've had the occasional customer service problem at almost every business (not just gun shops) at one point or another; it's great to see you taking the time to stand up, take responsibility, and work to make things right.

    -PH
     
  16. FloridaG31

    FloridaG31 Humble Glocker

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  17. SandyGlock

    SandyGlock

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    Thank you for the reply Jabie. I only just now noticed this thread. I will contact you in the near future about getting the necessary repairs done on the Savage rifle, I was assured by Savage that they would cover any cost incurred. But I am sure it is just a minor adjustment that won't require shipping. I was indeed put off by the salesman and did leave in a "huff" the last time I visited the store.

    I was not given any explanation by the salesguy as to why the Smith wouldn't talk to me even though I told him I had just called. I can only assume now that the salesguy never passed my message, or the note I wrote (asking the smith to contact me) along to to the Gunsmith. Whatever the matter I will make arraingements with you personally so as to ensure this is resolved.

    I will also update this thread on the matter, once resolved, so that anyone who wants reference can see that you took care of it.
     
  18. SandyGlock

    SandyGlock

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    I went down to DGM and they took care of my Savage for me and had it sent off to the manufacturer to be fixed. Best service I have recieved to date. I would advise anyone to talk with Jabie should a problem arise in the future. Even ordered a new stock for the Savage and am happy to be doing business there again.