The business of buying and selling can be extremely frustrating these days. It seems as though practically no one is willing to provide highly ethical, customer oriented service for the products and services they sell. On the flip side, it is also getting harder and harder to find honest customers willing to take responsibility for their choices and actions. With everyone looking out for "number one", we have created a society of "number two's"!
In such a culture of unethical commerce, it is refreshing to be involved in a transaction in which both parties are trying their hardest to put the other guy first. As rare as this has become, it does happen, and when I am party to this refreshing occurrence, I do my best to share the story.
After several years of patient waiting, the time had come for me to purchase another pistol and return to the only sport I love, namely shooting. So in September of this year, I did my research and went out hunting for a new Ruger Mark II. When I arrived at the shop, my wife saw the Ruger and fell in love...with a Walther P22.
Three days later I was plinking to my hearts content while putting several hundred rounds of various .22LR ammo through the tiny P22. At first, I was wishing I had not taken my wife to the shop with me. The Walther P22 was being very picky about the company it wanted to keep, but after putting over 500 rounds through it and getting the kinks worked out I was in love too. This little pistol is more fun than a pineapple upside down cake with extra pineapples.
Then, a mere two weeks after bringing the P22 home, it happened. I had put a lot of rounds through this little gun and I decided I would need to remove the barrel to get the gun good and clean. The barrel of the P22 is inside a barrel shroud which in turn is secured to the receiver by means of a barrel nut. The first problem with my Walther is that the barrel nut and barrel shroud came off as one piece. The second problem with my Walther is that the owner of the gun, who had already read the manual days before, did not see the need to read it again or he would have realized they were stuck together.
There is a notch in the breech end of the barrel shroud of the Walther P22 into which a corresponding nub inside the receiver sits in order to prevent the shroud from spinning when the barrel nut is screwed on and when the gun is fired. Of course if you replace the barrel nut and shroud as one piece and begin to tighten it down, the nub inside the receiver is smashed and rendered useless.
Upon realizing my mistake I immediately contacted Walther U.S.A. and was told the gun must be sent in for repairs. I did this and waited by the phone to see what the price of my ignorance would be.
I soon received a call from Walther U.S.A. and heard the worst possible news. The receiver was irreparably damaged and the gun would have to be replaced!
The very polite, down to earth representative from Walther suggested that Walther would absorb the cost and send me a replacement. I told her that as my letter indicated, the fault was largely, if not wholly mine. Felling my discomfort, and trying to find an equitable solution for myself and her company, she suggested we share the cost. I indicated that I would be willing to accept this proposition, but that at the moment I did not have the needed funds.
To be sure, my next proposal was going to be some solution involving payment over time or a delay in the final outcome until I had time to discuss the situation with my wife. However, I never got this far because at this point the representative told me once again she would simply replace my firearm with a brand new one. She quipped that I would know better than to shun the manual in the future and that Walther is proud to offer great service to its customers.
Within two weeks I expect to receive my replacement. I cannot give higher praise to Walther and to their representative "P" than to share my story and to continue patronizing their company at every opportunity. Does this mean Walther is in the business of giving away guns to schmucks that can't read? Of course not, and frankly if that is what you get from this story you are missing the whole point...better begin again from the top. What it does mean is that it is possible for businesses and customers to look out for the other guy and for both parties to profit. It also means Walther is one of these businesses and that they will be getting more business from me, and I hope from you.
Note: I have posted this story on several boards using the same title including, www.icarry.org
, and www.thefirearmsforum.com