Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Chet Durda credulously refers to Lancaster Arms' many problems as "Internet Urban Legends".

So it seems that, according to at least one report on a popular Internet firearms forum, if you call Lancaster these days and tell them you might be interested in ordering if not for all the negative Internet “chatter” surrounding Lancaster, Chet Durda - the owner and CEL (Chief Executive Liar) of Lancaster Arms - will tell you that all this chatter is nothing but “Internet Urban Legend” put out there by “unhappy armchair warriors”. Yes, it seems that everyone’s favorite firearms dealer/used-car salesman, Chet Durda of Lancaster Arms, still refuses to own-up to the very significant problems with both himself and his company.

We’ll review those problems in a minute. But first let me say, I have been a participant on various firearms-related Internet forums for many years. And I can tell you this with certainty: when people start dogging one person or firm in particular on those forums, if that criticism is not warranted or is unfair, others will very quickly stand up and say as much! On these forums, there are generally enough people around, with enough experience, to be able to quickly sort through criticism that is just, and criticism that is unjust. And the reason that the criticism of Lancaster has NOT gone away (in fact, I’d say it’s picking up steam), is because – Mr. Durda’s wishful thinking aside – the gripes about his company are unfortunately quite real.

So with that said Mr. Durda, please provide answers to the following facts and questions:

1. On this blog alone, there are approximately 30 complaints about Lancaster’s customer service and quality control. 30 complaints! Just on this single blog! And on other Internet forums, there are far more. Are these all just “Internet Urban Legends”, Mr. Durda?

2. Lancaster Arms currently has an “F” rating with the Arizona Better Business Bureau. Is this just an “Internet Urban Legend” too, Mr. Durda?

3. There are now several videos on Youtube of recently-built Lancaster rifles literally falling apart after only a small number of rounds are put through those rifles? I suppose that’s just “Internet Urban Legend” too, Mr. Durda?

4. According to the Lancaster website, Lancaster recently stopped accepting credit cards. With most companies that sell high dollar value items, that is a HUGE red flag. I suppose this, too, is just “Internet Urban Legend” Mr. Durda?

5. The Arizona Attorney General’s office has opened a complaint file on Lancaster Arms, in response to Lancaster’s failure to timely resolve problems. And let me guess Chet Durda…this is also part of the “Internet Urban Legend”?

6. On another website, a very highly-respected and award-winning AK builder who knows Mr. Durda personally, called Chet Durda out as “a pathological liar", "a cheat", a "con man" and "a sociopath". Yes…this is actually somebody who personally knows you Mr. Durda, and who has worked with you and your company, Lancaster! But let me guess…this is just all part of the unfair “Internet Urban Legend” you describe? There can't POSSIBLY be anything wrong with little ol' innocent you, right???

Gee, Mr. Durda. It kinda seems like the complaints lodged against Lancaster Arms, and you personally, aren’t “Internet Urban Legend” at all, but in fact are based on a series of problems that are both well-documented and easy to verify. And given that I also personally know you to be a dishonest and fairly despicable human, I can understand how you would attempt to whitewash things, and try to proclaim that it is everyone ELSE with the problem. That's what people like you do.

So with this allegation Mr. Chet Durda, the only thing you got right was that I (and several others) are “unhappy”. We’re unhappy that you seemingly lack any character or integrity. We’re unhappy that your word means nothing. We’re unhappy that people like you give this entire industry a black eye. We’re unhappy that the Arizona Attorney General’s office has not sanctioned you (yet). We’re unhappy that you apparently think you can outsmart the entire Internet. We’re unhappy that, even after being exposed as a liar in public, you continue to lie like a rug. And mostly, we’re unhappy that you’ve attempted to sweep these problems under the rung and pretend as if they don’t exist. And on a personal level, I’m unhappy that you directly lied to me on three occasions, apparently with no concern whatsoever.

So Mr. Durda and Lancaster, the next time someone calls you and inquires as to why you’ve developed such a bad reputation, you might want to think twice about trying to just blow off the criticism. People ARE going to hear the truth about you and Lancaster…no matter how hard you try and hide it from them.

** As a programming note, to everyone who is new to this blog (and there are many of you according to my hit counter), please read all the posts…ESPECIALLY the post from January containing all the complaints about Lancaster and Chet. **

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Lancaster Arms: Still Major Problems

Last time I posted an update in late January, Lancaster Arms and Chet Durda were busy pissing off their retail customers. Since that last post, some interesting developments have taken place with Lancaster Arms:

1. Very recently, Lancaster changed their website and noted that they are no longer accepting credit cards. Gee…now why would a company that mostly sells high dollar-value (over $500+) items, all of a sudden stop taking credit cards?!? If I had to guess, I might speculate that Lancaster Arms lost its credit card merchant account. I know for a fact that several people – me included – had to do a chargeback to get our money back from Lancaster after Chet Durda constantly lied about the shipping dates on products we bought from him. I would not at all be surprised if this is what happened. To be sure, it is strange that a company like Lancaster Arms would just stop accepting credit cards all of a sudden. Real strange. As in, “This can’t be good” strange.

2. Also recently posted on Lancaster’s website is a note that they are stopping production of their “Rough Rider” series of AK-74’s. At first thought this also seems strange, since it sure does appear that many people have purchased this rifle in the last month or two. It’s not as if it was a commercial flop or something. But when you do a little digging, it appears that Lancaster’s “Rough Rider” series is plagued with quality-control problems. There have been a couple of videos posted on Youtube of people who bought Lancaster Arms Rough Rider rifles that literally started to fall apart after fewer than 1,000 rounds! And when I say “fall apart”, I mean exactly that…rivets popping loose, dust covers blowing off, etc. One guy on Youtube even claims that he will be sending his Lancaster rifle back because he is afraid of it! Nice. Apparently Chet Durda wasn’t content to just offer shitty customer service…now quality problems seem to be cropping up on the forums on a more frequent basis.

Google “Lancaster, Rough Rider, problem”, or some similar combination of search terms, and you’ll find a mountain of problems with this particular model of Lancaster rifle. No wonder Lancaster is discontinuing these!

3. I recently discovered a group of people in California who did a “group buy” of Lancaster Draco rifles. As might be predicted, Lancaster screwed them, left them hanging, and to this day continues to give them the run-around (Chet’s specialty) every time they call to see where their rifles are. As of today, they have an Internet thread that is 103 pages long (not a typo), complaining about how bad they’ve been lied to and screwed over by various personnel at Lancaster. A couple guys there are even starting to talk about hiring a lawyer to keep Lancaster honest. And yet, having dealt with Lancaster myself for months just trying to get someone there to give me a straight story, I’m not even remotely surprised.

So there you have it. Now, for those of you who are new to this blog, keep reading. In particular, read the previous posts about all the complaints that have been circulating on the Internet about Lancaster. I absolutely, positively do NOT trust Lancaster Arms or Chet Durda, and in my opinion, doing business with them is AT YOUR OWN VERY SIGNIFICANT RISK! Particularly now that they don’t take credit cards, you are basically going to be screwed if you order anything from Lancaster, and they treat you like they’ve treated so many of their other customers. As Chet proved to me, once he has your money…he couldn’t care less about you or what you ordered. If you’ve read this blog and yet still decide to order a firearm directly from Lancaster Arms, don’t come back here crying if you get screwed. You’ve been warned.


About Me

But quite willing to "help" Lancaster Arms fully understand why the way they run their business, is completely unacceptable.

Welcome to

This site exist to help police a firearms manufacturer that has decided to run its business using questionable ethics. Too often, there is not enough complete, accurate information on the Internet about companies engaged in the manufature of firearms. It is my hope that this blog shall serve as a useful tool to help guide potential customers of Lancaster Arms to a fully-informed decision. As of the start date of this blog, many, many people feel as though Lancaster Arms does not run an honest business. We'll let the chips fall where they may...