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Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by hollywood88, Nov 20, 2012.
Does anybody have any expirience with this company. If so how was fit and finish of the stocks?
A quick search would have told you alot. But, here is one link: http://www.longrangehunting.com/forums/f23/opinions-richards-microfit-stocks-19028/
I bought a laminate stock that was rough finished for a Winchester M70 WSSM action. I was dissapointed in the inlet job as it wasn't really close at all. I was supposed to be a drop in fit but needed major fitting and then a full action bedding to correct the problems. It took me a while (I'm no pro and did this in my spare time) but after I was done it worked out well. There are much better finished or semi finished stocks out there for the more common rifles,
The only reason I used them in the first place was because nobody else made a stock for the WSSM action and I had to get it out of the tupperware stock it was in in order for it to shoot.
Just my experience, others may have had better luck.
Pre-inletted stocks, like Richards', are intended to be finish inletted by the customer. Some also require some shaping on the outside. You won't find many that are "drop-in". If that's what you want (drop-in) look else where. Even for a pre-inlet that will require finish inletting and finish shaping (I don't want a "drop-in"!), I don't even consider Richards. They're full of 'problems' most stock makers don't want to deal with. Don't be wowed by their pretty pictures.
I have several. They are great stocks for what they are: inexpensive laminates that will last for years with the proper preparation. No matter what anyone says, they are not "drop-in" by any means. They will require several hours of sanding and possibly some chisel work to complete inletting. I highly recommend bedding after completing your sanding and chiseling. I use Devcon.
I will also use Duracoat or a marine grade poly to finish the stock.
Your reward for all of your hard work is a semi custom stock that hopefully fits you just a little bit better and some pennies in the bank for your next project.
FYI, I have sanded, sealed/painted and bedded these stocks in as little as 3.5 hours and as many as 15 hours. Your first one will take longer. Poly will add some hours. Inletting will add some if required, but I have never spent more that hour getting my inletting correct. Mostly because I'm going to bed anyway, so removing a little extra is not a big deal.
For starters their customer service is terrible!! Then when the stock finally gets to you (about 8 mos. later, in my case) you will have to do ALOT of final inletting. Then finish it all.
For my next project I ponied up and spent the money on a Manners and am soooo happy with it I will never go back.
Spend the money up front, get a better product and save yourself a tremendous headache and PITA!
WOW, you got yours that fast!!! One round with them was enough, the stocks are just junk!
You all are expecting "drop-in",,,,, that is NOT a reasonable expectation from ANY pre-inlet. If "drop-in/finished" is what you're wanting, contact Joel Russo (www.russoriflestocks.com). Don't expect to get a stock from him at Richards' price. He puts alot of knowledge into his work. His in-letting is done by a CNC (ya' think programming is easy,,, try it sometime! It's a whole 'special' set of skills). He will need your barreled action and bottom metal, at minimum. He is quit busy, so, be prepared to wait. Most pre-inletters (including Richards) use manual machines. The 'commercial' outfits (like Richards) buy their blanks in bulk as cheaply as they can. Many are not sawn from the log correctly, nor have they been properly dried and then seasoned for proper "stress relief". Their pattern stocks are what they are. Many times what you might get from these "commercial" outfits isn't straight and/or the wood is crappy. There are others who provide a pre-inlet. They don't advertise, like Richards does. They pre-inlet for custom "stockmakers". And YES, there is still such a thing as a "stockmaker". Just look up the "American Custom Gunmakers Guild". Professional work of this nature rarely come from amature hands! "DROP-IN" has become one of the greastest marketing tools of our day, as most are reluctant to pay for labor. It just isn't gonna' happen with natural material, like stock wood! A pre-inletted stock is only intended to shorten the time (50%-75%) it would take to make a stock by hand from a blank, not to "drop-in" like a McMillan or Manners that is special ordered to your metal (and again, inletted by a CNC and cast in a mold). There is still a place in the gun world for hand work! Unfortunately, in todays day and age, most don't seem to understand that.
I would tend to agree that they are not meant to be drop in and besides from cutting your stock from a chunk of wood (which I have done my fair share of) they are one of the most cost effective ways to get a semi-custom stock, and if you are handy with wood you can usually get them to fit 100% which many "drop in" stocks are not anyways IMO.
last I herd, they were swapping their macanical duplicating machines over to CNC.
Put 'crap' material and/or programming into a CNC machine and it'll still be 'crap'. Blanks I'm interested in cost 4-5+ times what Richards charges for one of their pre-inletted stocks. And, I'm not buying just high figure, I 'm buying a blank that was properly cut from the log, properly air dried for 5+ years, and then seasoned for several more years. The good stuff (wood, synthetic, or metal) doesn't come cheap!
I was under no illusion about having to finish inlet my Richards stock, and I shouldn't have used the term "drop in" They do advertise a 99% press fit inlet and I thought that it should have been close to what I thought I was getting. The stock was off by as much as 1/3". The only things that were close were the front and rear screws hole were correct and the bolt handle cut off was as well, I did have to fill in the forward triger screw-guard hole and move it 1/8 " and re-cut the recoil lug area 1/3" back.
Maybe I thought 99% press fit would be closer. Still, if a person wants a "drop in" stock, look at Stocky Stocks or Boyds stocks there are lots of other options. If a person is patient and good with their hands, a Richards will do.
I am fortunate to have a friend that is a member of the Custom Gun Makers Guild, he specializes in custom stocks and stock duplication and we talked about this after I took on and finished this project. I thought about asking him about it before thinking that he was too busy to answer my questions about it. I was at his shop and while we were talking about it we set up one of his machines and he let me cut out a stock for one of his clients. It was one to one stock duplication and I completely inletted the stock inside and out barrel channel and everything to within .15" of finish. It took 30 min to set up and about 30 mins for this novice to cut the stock.
He did tell me that he buys laminate blanks from Richards as they are the best source and variety of color and lamination patterns out there and that their laminate blanks are really quite good, but Richards, in order to be profitable and fast as well as inexpensive cut thier stocks 10-1 ten blanks at one time to one pattern stock and press inletting is a jig that presses down as it cuts to a specific depth. There can and are problems with this method.
He also offered to let me cut out and duplicate a stock on his machiene the next time I wanted to do another one for free, with him supervising, I plan on taking him up on that some day...
I hope this clarifies and further explains my experience. I feel that one should have all sides to many stories in order to make informed decisions. I mean no direspect, but only hope this helps.
I have had horrible customer service from Richards Microfit Stocks.
Recently, I ordered a Dual Grip Thumb-Hole Stock for a Savage 110. After an 82 day wait, they shipped a Straight-Line thumb-hole style stock.
At the time of my initial order, they claimed there would be a 99% fit with my Savage 110 which might require some minor sanding. I don't know whose order was shipped but the stock that was sent did not fit my rifle.
Whoever was operating the CNC machine had no idea as to what they were doing!
There was no quality control on Richards Microfit Stocks. Nobody checked to see if the order was correct before they shipped the stock. There was deep gouges in the wood, (which I could have dealt with.) The L.O.P. was incorrect (which I could have dealt with.)
Folk's, this is what they sent me:
Folk's, this is what they advertise on their website what the customer would receive:
During the entire order process, including waiting for the stock to be delivered, emails were not returned. They falsely claimed that all emails were answered - this is not true.
When I called them about the wrong stock being shipped, the Lady who answered said she was just covering for them and didn't know what was going on. She stated that I would get a refund and never offered to correct the issues. The call lasted less than a minute. The very next day, UPS picked up the stock and sent it back to Richards.
I sent a detailed letter about the stock to Richards on 10/9 by fax and email. After not hearing from them, I then sent a complaint to the BBB on 10/15. Please keep in mind that during my 82 day wait, Richards Microfit Stocks did not answer my Emails, so I gave them six days before filing a complaint with the BBB.
Two weeks later, I get a very angry call from Richards who falsely claimed that I was hostile. She was angry that I sent a letter to them about the stock. She was also very angry that I sent a complaint letter to the BBB. She was very rude and unprofessional on the phone and kept interrupting me. I couldn't finish a sentence with the lady. She blamed me for all of the problems.
During her call to me, she claimed that two people were out of the office, that also she had been in the hospital. How can I be hostile if nobody is in the office to take my call?
She then asked that I return a refund check that had been mistakenly mailed to me.
(Really? They couldn't send me the correct order and made yet another mistake with a refund? It is one excuse after another with this company!)
Folk's, it took 82 days for them to ship my order. They didn't answer emails. They sent the wrong stock. The stock had deep gouges in it which I could have taken care of had it been what I ordered. There was no quality to what was shipped to me. They never checked to see if the stock they shipped was what I ordered - no quality control. The stock did not fit my Savage 110. They became angry and vindictive after I sent them a letter and complained to the BBB. They gave a credit to my credit card - then they screwed up by mailing me a check. Nobody was in the office or knew what was going on. They made false accusations about me while asking that I return the check because of their incompetence. They called my home and became very rude and unprofessional because I dared to send a letter to them and to the BBB...
At no time have they ever apologized or offered to correct the mistake made with my order!
Customer service is a dying art. Great company’s work with customers. Poor company’s blame their customers.
In closing, there is no doubt that people have had great experiences with Richards Microfit Stocks. That they have many satisfied customers. But, the fact remains that a search on Google shows complaint after complaint from people who have had experienced horrible customer service from Richard's Microfit Stocks!
Folk's, they claim that the only mistake they made was that the sent a Straight-Line thumb-hole style stock. That it would have taken them 15 minutes to correct, but they don't want to do that because of the letter I sent to them...
Richard's Microfit Stocks could have addressed every single concern I had in my 10/09 letter. But that would have required quality customer service!
I got a richards micro fit laminate stock. It took forever to get, and the barrel channel was not straight with the inlet of the action. I will never get another.
Richards??? I'm a Master / Custom stock maker having been in the business now for 41 years and have used Richards at times in the past. The work was very high quality but I only sent them my own wood for turning. That said, this latest batch was a real screw up from the get go. I sent in two orders the first was for 10 pieces to be turned with my own wood supplied for tips and grip caps. I got 9 back and every one of the blanks had the tips miss-aligned so there were large gaps and glue lines in every piece. Not only that, several of the stock blanks had been cut crooked so the tip junctions were catiwumpas. Now for the crowning screwup! One of the pieces was exhibition grade Royal Black Walnut with lots of streaking and heavy tight fiddle back from end to end. They said they never received it. I sent pictures showing it and the tracking number showing it was received. I had also asked that any pieces trimmed prior to turning be returned for other projects. You guessed it, they returned the trimmings and in them were pieces from the missing stock even though they say they never received it. Those pieces were stamped identical to the stamps on the pictures I had sent. They say they have sent the second batch back to me without turning and will not do any more of my work but I shipped 11 pieces and they are shipping back 9, again saying they only received 9. I will never use them again and due the the sloppy workmanship I am going to have to re-cut each blank they turned and reinstall the tips. Richards has gone from a company I could count on to one with crappy workmanship. They even refused to reimburse me for the cost of installing the tips even though I sent pictures showing the problem with each one. Customer Service at it's worst!
Roy's Custom Gunstocks
14792 Springwood Rd.
La Pine, OR