Monday, June 30, 2008

Para does not want me.

I've kept my mouth shut during the whole ParaOrdnance blogger shooty contest thing. They really went out of their way to support the 2A Blog Bash, and their rep there was so friendly it hurt. It took a lot of work for me to not refer to them as "Painted Ordnance" in front of him. (Paras have a bake-on finish, hence the nickname among gunsmiths.) I gritted my teeth and didn't ask annoying questions like "How come we sent that guy's LDA back twice and y'all didn't replace the undersized firing pin stop that kept falling out while he was shooting it and we had to replace it ourselves to keep the customer happy?"

Although two out of my three personal ownership experiences with ParaOrd firearms were satisfactory (and the third wasn't all Para's fault, as it was one of their early frame kits built with a World War One-era GI top end), my experiences with QC problems in retailing their products over the years were so disappointing that I finally just stopped carrying them for sale as regular stock items.

Maybe they've gotten better in the year or two since I threw up my hands in defeat, I don't know, but I do know that I would have gone to Blackwater with a decade's worth of bad blood in my veins, and that would skew my objectivity something fierce.

So, with one day left, go to Para's site and vote for my pal Squeaky. She'll be able to bring a fresh perspective to the whole thing that I wouldn't. I thank you, and Painted Ordnance thanks you!

19 comments:

GeorgeH said...

No, their quality control hasn't improved.
I've bought 4 over the last 15 years, the last one a few months ago. What I got was not the model I ordered, in fact it was a model that supposedly doesn't even exist. so it was weeks of screwing around because they had to make a new frame with the correct number on it.

Squeaky Wheel said...

I should probably write something here, because HOLY CRAP if even half the people who would have voted for you end up voting for me, I think it's safe to say that I will be on the list of winners, and that makes me practically pee with excitement. Sorry, I had to go there.

Reasons I want to go: One, as you pointed out, I have no experience with Para, and even if they turn out to be crap, I can't just take people's word for it - I have to try it out for myself. Two, tactical training with Todd Jarrett, a machine in the guise of a man, is something I wouldn't be able to afford, otherwise. Three, visiting VA and hanging out with a bunch of gunnies for the cost of a plane ticket. Four, being able to broadcast the podcast (nyuk, nyuk) with Ahab on-location, if we both make the cut.

Tam, you're awesome. Thank you for using some of your link-fu on little ol' me. :-)

USCitizen said...

Good luck to all the NRA Gunbloggers for the Para / Blackwater trip!

It's an honor to know you all.

- USCitizen

pdb said...

Well of course Para sucks at making guns.

They're from Canada.

Duh.

Anonymous said...

Nah, I'm voting for YOU and if elected, I expect you to GO! They can just handle it!

Robb Allen said...

*hangs head and grouses*

:P

Anonymous said...

Well, I threw dinero at Squeaky, but I can't throw votes at her. They want my name and email, and I ain't doing that. (Sorry Squeaks, you'll just have to live with the money.)

Exit, grapes souring...
Hank

(Squeaks, you'll have to transliterate the name I go by to my "official" name if you want to identify me.)

Dr. StrangeGun said...

I'm pretty happy with mine, Tam.

Of course, whether or not it's really a Para anymore is debatable :) Little sucker needed quite a lot of fitting to take the monster 10mm I've been feeding it.

Didja know that the shock wave from 135gr 1600fps 10mm will sweep the range surface in front of you clean from all cardboard fragments?

Tam said...

Like I said, I was happy with the ones I owned. It was just all the other crapalicious ones I sold to customers and had to fix that soured my grapes...

Weer'd Beard said...

I own no Paras, and have been disuaded from buying one by all the gunnies I respect.

Too bad, because I really think the Warthog is a neat gun!

jimbob86 said...

Tis good to know my eval of ParaOrds squares with one much more knoledgable than myself.... I chose a Springer instead......

As for "Para does not want me." ....... Either they are blind, stupid, or both.....

And I'm with anonymouse 2: I'm not going to give my E-mail to Para, or any other Giant Corporation, that they may assault my inbox with ads for crap I didn't even know I wanted...... though it would be sweet to set the Queen of Snark upon them, in person.....

Nate said...

I had to peddle my Warthog after numerous tries and parts to make it work and it still didn't. I was pretty disappointed because it seemed like a really nice gun.

And as a single shot- it was a nice gun. Just not suitable for self-protection.

Tam said...

Although I know folks who I trust who have given favorable reviews to their P10/Warthogs, I've never seen one that was really reliable with my own eyes.

My P12 worked just peachy, FWIW.

Rabbit said...

I've not been impressed enough with any of the ones I've shot to buy one. SWMBO picked a Springer Micro Compact over one.

Regards,
Rabbit.

Matt G said...

Horseshit.

Tamara, the most perfect person to send is a critic.

I voted for you, and I sneered while I did it.

So there.

Kevin said...

Tam

I nominated you some weeks ago.

Kevin K

Weer'd Beard said...

+1 I like the way they feel in my big hands. The wider backstrap compensates well for the small size and lightness. I shot a mag from one at the gun club and I liked it.

But then the internet is LOADED with stories of people who just CAN'T get them to run effectivly, and I dunno about free states, but here in Mass they don't run too cheap.

Oh well.

Sean_Galt said...

Too late here, you already had my vote a while back.
I must agree on the Paras from what I have seen so far; granted, I see them for refinishing, so they always look bad coming in & cool when I'm done, but I can't speak towards reliability. I do usually see (fit)things I would like to work on when they come in, but unless asked for...I'm a finish guy. Not sure what their slides are; they don't black parkerize worth a dman, tho.

Montie said...

Tam,

I had a P-14 built from one of the early frame kits and a Colt commercial slide. It works great. I later bought a P-12 that has hummed along quite nicely and is so reliable that I carry it as my duty gun (detective).

A buddy of mine was smitten with the two I owned, so he bought a P-14 new in the box. It was a fine performer... AS A BOAT ANCHOR.

He sent it to the factory twice for repair and never could get it to feed more than two rounds in a row without a stoppage.

This really bummed me out about the Paras, yet mine did, and continue to, work great.

Incidentally, Using the slide of a P-12 to break the window out of a fast submerging car in order to extricate the suicidal female from within, can result in scratches to the painted on finish.