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Thread: Beretta Customer Service

  1. #1

    Thumbs down Beretta Customer Service

    Some of you may be familiar with the saga of my Sako Finnlight 300 WSM. Well here is tha latest.

    When I got my rifle back from the factory the first time for accuracy problems (2-4 MOA) after a 2 1/2 month wait. I got some paperwork with it that said that all they had done was to give it a thorough check over and cleaning. And then they shot it getting a .9" group @ 108 yds. Their guarantee is a 5 shot 1" group @ 100 Yds. They basically were saying it was a dirty rifle which is total BS. I broke that barrel in cleaning after each shot for 13 shots then I cleaned it after every 3-5 shot group. Then I cleaned it after every few groups and never exceeded 20 shots' between cleanings. In the field I used Butch's Bore shine until I saw white patches. I also used a brush. At home I gave it Wipeout soaking treatments until I saw a white patch. When you get a white patch after soaking a bore with Wipeout for 8 hours there is nothing left in the bore. It is clean to bare metal as has been verified to me by a local gunsmith who I had borescope a couple of my barrels after cleaning with Wipeout.

    After getting the rifle, I bought a box of Winchester 180 PP to shoot through the rifle which is the same ammo they had said they used. BTW, the target they sent back was computer generated. No bullet holes and it wasn't even to actual scale. They shot it through some peice of Oehler equipment which replicated the alleged group on paper. I went to the range with a friend who is a compition shooter and we did some some shooting. I had thoroughly cleaned the bore before getting to the range. I fired two sighter/fouler rounds and then fired a 5 shot group. It measured 1.35". I asked my friend to shoot a group and it measured 1.15". I then shot a group of Fed premium 180 AB's which measured about 2.5" Subsequent trips to the range and groups went down hill with groups in the 2-3 inch ball park. I was not happy. I sent the rifle back a second time recently, this time with a 3 page letter, explaining a lot of details including the fact the the rifle had been very well maintained and the bore was very well cleaned... spotless to be exact.

    I called Beretta yesterday (a week and a half after sending it in) to get the status of the rifle. I spoke with a man named Rick in Maryland, who siad they did the same thing as before. Cleaned the rifle and shot a .9" group. I asked what happened when they cleaned the barrel and he said they had got a lot of copper out of it - exact words... "a lot of copper". I was livid, but I basically kept my composure, but my tone did change. This dirty bore story was totally manufactured, and I would have to call it an out right lie. I explained to him the lengths I went to make sure the barrel was clean. He was not impressed and said they had cleaaned it with Sweets and that I had just not got all the copper out. My blood pressure was going up and I am usually a calm person. I explained to him that Wipeout was a better product than Sweets and insisted that the bore was spotless. He would have no part of it.

    Then I said, OK, I will shoot the rifle again when I get it back, and if it doesn't shoot 1", I will have a gunsmith boresight it and verify in writing that the bore is completely clean - would he accept that? He said he would not accept the written statement of a smith who boresighted the rifle. Simply amazing... He said the only way to verify it is to run a patch through it. I couldn't bhelieve what I was hearing. Then I said, What if I were to run some Sweets through it after cleaning it with Wipeout? He wouldn't go for it and said if I sent it in again and they fired it to spec, they would charge me this time for their effort. I was quite angry at this point, but remained basically calm.

    I had also explained to him, that I used a Nightforce scope on the rifle and used this scope on a Sendero 300 RUM and shot a sub 1/2 MOA group with it. I also shot a .24" 3 shot group with a Sendero 25-06 recently in less than ideal conditions. I think this rules out the scope and the shooter. I may not be a BR competiton shooter, but I can hold and shoot steady. Shooting a 1" group with a rifle that is capable of it is no problem for me.

    Bottom line... IME, Beretta has manufactured a story of dirty barrel and I believe they have lied to me with what they did to the rifle and the results. Their 1 MOA guarantee is worthless and they will not stand behind it. They do not provide targets with bullet holes with their rifles like Cooper and Weatherby do. Other manufacturers do not make accuracy guarantees. Remmington "says" that their Senderos will shoot very accurate and they do. Much better than the newer Sakos.

    I think Sako Quality has gone downhill with the take over of Beretta and if you by a Sako or Tikka, you're on your own. They have an empty guarantee. False advertizing. At least this hunting season I have a couple of good shooting rifles to pick from unlike last year.

    I will not buy another Beretta product ever.

    -MR

  2. #2

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    I have heard of similar Beretta customer service problems.

    Sorry about your bad luck with that rifle. Trade it off, move on to a better project. You will probably be happier in the end.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Sako went down hill by the seventies and is only a name kept alive by Beretta now.

  4. #4

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    Update:

    Yesterday, I asked Rick to speak with the technician who worked on my rifle to verifify what he was telling me. So just a few minutes ago Rick and the technician called me. When I asked the technician about "a lot" of copper, he said that he had found "some" Copper, but went on to explain that he found residue in the bedding area. This was probably from the Wipeout leaking doown through the action. So in all fairness, that may be the problem or part of it. But I have an several occasions removed the action and cleand the stock and action with the same results.

    I also wonder if they were using brass/bronze jags and brushes to clean with. If they were they would get blue residue in a clean bore.

    When I get the rifle back, I'll shoot it and see what happens. In anycase, I think I will end up pillar bedding the stock because I think the stock/bedding is a piece of crap and is probably the main culprit in this problem.

    I'll keep this rifle an work on it because I do like the action. It's a good peice of work. I'll pillar bed the stock and probably skim bed it as well and maybe get the crown tuned. If that doesn't help much, I'll get the action blueprinted and custom barreled.

    I still wont be buying anymore new Sako's or Tikka's after this experience,

    Rem Sendero's and Weatherby Vangards are better rifles over all, even though the Sako actions are better. It's a real shame they put that action into that flimsy, cheap plastic stock. Hard to beleive.

    -MR

  5. #5
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    I didnt see you mention much about load developement but this rifle sounds like a good choice to play around and experiment with different powders and bullets.
    Perhaps it simply does not like the factory ammo you are feeding it. You did report accuracy continued to go downhill the more the rifle was shot so perhaps the bore is rough causing more cooper build up than expected. Perhaps having it hand lapped would help?
    Tennessee

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowwolfe View Post
    I didnt see you mention much about load developement but this rifle sounds like a good choice to play around and experiment with different powders and bullets.
    Perhaps it simply does not like the factory ammo you are feeding it. You did report accuracy continued to go downhill the more the rifle was shot so perhaps the bore is rough causing more cooper build up than expected. Perhaps having it hand lapped would help?
    I did do some load development with H4350, RL17 and 180 E-Tips, 168 TTSX's and 210 Berger VLD's, They shot anywhere from 1.5 to 4 MOA and never consistant with the same load. also shot Fed 180 SP's (blue box) out if it too.

    I did a 13 shot, claen and fire break-in until copper fouling almost completely ceased. After it came back from the factory the first time it seemed to foul more. It does foul some, but is definitely the easiest cleaning rifle I have.

    I really think the culprit is the stock. I'm guesssing I'll see be improvment in accuracy and consistancy when I pillar bed it.

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  8. #8

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    MontanaRifleMan,

    sorry to hear about your experience with the Sako 300 WSM. it makes me wonder if Sako is worth the extra money above say a Winchester M70. Hope you get it to shoot better without much more work.
    Chaps

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    I worked with a fellow gunsmith for about 10 years who had worked at Beretta in Accokeek, Md. for a period of time, around 6 years if I remember correctly. He was a very talented guy. The story he told me about the attitude at Beretta was "if it fits in a box, ship it" and also an attitude of denial at the highest levels that the guns they make can malfunction. The customer service I've personally seen when sending guns back for service has generally been poor.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by CHAPS View Post
    MontanaRifleMan,

    sorry to hear about your experience with the Sako 300 WSM. it makes me wonder if Sako is worth the extra money above say a Winchester M70. Hope you get it to shoot better without much more work.
    Chaps
    Chaps, the action is a sweet peice of work. I really like it. But the way I figure it, a gun is equal to it's lowest common denominator and in the case of a Finnlight, the stock is about worthless. Put a string of pearls on a pig and it's still a pig. Now a Sako Greywolf might be a different story. However, in the future, I will not buy any new gun unless i have strong confidence in the maunufacturer standing behind it. I bought a used Sendero 300 RUM and the reason I bought it is the guy who owned it told me he shot a group at 350 yds that he could cover with a quater. I've just now been working up some loads in it and it looks like it has real promise. Not as pretty as a Sako, and the action aint real smooth, but it flat out shoots and it will cycle rounds and get the job done.

    Vangards come with a factory fired 3 shot group. Howa makes their actions and they are bedded in a great pillar bedded stock and you can get a stainless Sub MOA for about $600 less than a Sako. I was looking at a Sub MOA 270 WSM with a target that showed a 1/2 inch group. it made my mouth water. Not quite as pretty as a Sako, but a good looking rifle that can shoot.

    I'll keep the Sako because I dont want to dump a headache on someone else and it may turn out to be a shooter with some pillar bedding and some other work. But I didn't pay Sako prices to be doing that stuff. I could have got a custom action and barrel and stock.

  11. #11
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    I have a Tika T3 300WSM that will shoot a three shot group that looks like one ragged hole with factory ammo. I will be working on some hand loads for it and see what happens.

    On the other hand my neighbor bought one of those fancy high dollar Sako's and he was having problems getting it sighted in. He took it sheep hunting for his Delta Sheep Hunt(permit) and while out in the field hunting he noticed the barrel was loose. He said he could turn the barrel with his hand. Long story short last time I heard he was still fighting to get it fixed also.

  12. #12
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    Some, but not all, molded plastic stocks, will flex excessively under recoil.
    Just take your rifle out of the stock and give the stock a twist with your hands at the forend and butt, you'll probably be surprised it shoots as well as it does. Those solid composite stocks by McMillan, HS, and others are simply better platforms for accuracy. This is not to say that some plastic stocked rifles don't shoot very well. Some do, some don't. Remember, a molded plastic stock is just that, thin molded plastic with some ribs molded internally for added rigidity. They are made to be cheap, not good. HS and others with full length aluminum bedding blocks are a MUCH better deal. Yes they cost more but will probably save you the cost in wasted ammo trying to find the "right" load.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaRifleman View Post

    Bottom line... IME, Beretta has manufactured a story of dirty barrel and I believe they have lied to me with what they did to the rifle and the results. Their 1 MOA guarantee is worthless and they will not stand behind it. They do not provide targets with bullet holes with their rifles like Cooper and Weatherby do. Other manufacturers do not make accuracy guarantees. Remmington "says" that their Senderos will shoot very accurate and they do. Much better than the newer Sakos.

    I think Sako Quality has gone downhill with the take over of Beretta and if you by a Sako or Tikka, you're on your own. They have an empty guarantee. False advertizing. At least this hunting season I have a couple of good shooting rifles to pick from unlike last year.

    I will not buy another Beretta product ever.

    -MR
    There's no doubt in my mind, you got that guy pegged.

    I betcha the rifle, as is, WON'T shoot MOA, and he knew it.

    I agree, it's dishonesty from the get-go.

    It'll come back to him, and his Crap Employer.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunbugs View Post
    Some, but not all, molded plastic stocks, will flex excessively under recoil.
    Just take your rifle out of the stock and give the stock a twist with your hands at the forend and butt, you'll probably be surprised it shoots as well as it does. Those solid composite stocks by McMillan, HS, and others are simply better platforms for accuracy. This is not to say that some plastic stocked rifles don't shoot very well. Some do, some don't. Remember, a molded plastic stock is just that, thin molded plastic with some ribs molded internally for added rigidity. They are made to be cheap, not good. HS and others with full length aluminum bedding blocks are a MUCH better deal. Yes they cost more but will probably save you the cost in wasted ammo trying to find the "right" load.
    It "Could" very well be the stock. But Beretta'e responsibility here goes beyond placing the rifle in a vice, which is what they told me they do with rifles in these situations in a very condencending manner.
    Sure the stock can be replaced and should it still shoot erradically then by all means replace the barrel too. Lots of "options" for the OP once you are on your own.
    We expect a little better customer service with a higher end product then say a $279 Wal-Mart special.
    Chris

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunbugs View Post
    Some, but not all, molded plastic stocks, will flex excessively under recoil.
    Just take your rifle out of the stock and give the stock a twist with your hands at the forend and butt, you'll probably be surprised it shoots as well as it does. Those solid composite stocks by McMillan, HS, and others are simply better platforms for accuracy. This is not to say that some plastic stocked rifles don't shoot very well. Some do, some don't. Remember, a molded plastic stock is just that, thin molded plastic with some ribs molded internally for added rigidity. They are made to be cheap, not good. HS and others with full length aluminum bedding blocks are a MUCH better deal. Yes they cost more but will probably save you the cost in wasted ammo trying to find the "right" load.
    You make a good point and I have considered another stock. The options for Sakos are very limited and about the best choice would be a McMillan which I may do instead of wasting my time trying to beef up a piece of plastic.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by PRDATR View Post
    It "Could" very well be the stock. But Beretta'e responsibility here goes beyond placing the rifle in a vice, which is what they told me they do with rifles in these situations in a very condencending manner.
    Sure the stock can be replaced and should it still shoot erradically then by all means replace the barrel too. Lots of "options" for the OP once you are on your own.
    We expect a little better customer service with a higher end product then say a $279 Wal-Mart special.
    Chris
    This is very interesting, Rick told me that they put the rifle in a rest, not viced. Clamping it in a vice would completely change the rifles dynamic. Seems to be conflicitng info....

  17. #17
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    I would think that they use something similar to a Ransom Rest only for rifles but that is what I was told when I called them before I shipped my T3 back.

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