Well, I've been in contact with Marin Customer Service. Of course there are no replacement limbs available, which is understandable after this long. I inquired about the specifics of the "Lifetime Warranty", since I do in fact still have the sales receipt, asking if the 50% prorated repair/replace would entitle me to a new bow at half price. Paraphrasing, I was informed the warranty was not for MY lifetime, but the product lifetime, which means until they stop making that model, and all the parts run out. These days, since they update models about every other season at least, and I'm certain they don't do a huge run to stockpile parts, that means the "lifetime warranty"....in my mind, one of the top selling points of their product....is only good for maybe 4-5 years. I'm not too awfully upset....I'm the one that didn't lower the poundage every year to give the limbs a rest, and they're just past their usefulness. I wouldn't call up Weatherby after 20 years and ask them to replace the shot out barrel on my hunting rifle, and I can't expect Martin to keep an indefinite supply of parts sockpiled to fix old bows....even though the copy of the warranty I got when I bought my bow doesn't include the fine print that let's me know their "lifetime warranty" is really just an inside joke.
Been keeping an eye open for a replacement. Don't care much at all for the new bows...those built within the last 5 years or so. Not that they don't perform....but because they all look the same.
I'm not sure which company it was that came out with the paralel limbs first, but after that there hasn't really been any individuality, or personality in the industry...it's been all about the technology, and keeping up with the competition. And that's all well and good; there will always be lots of people out there who are on the hunt for the latest and greatest. That's what keeps Martin and all the other manufacturers in buisness, and why they sell a ton of bows.
Of course, I always thought of Martin as more than just a manufacturer, more than just a company that makes and sells archery equipment. When I think of Martin, I think of a company that creates highly crafted and aesthetically attractive tools for archers, and as peace's post touched on, a company that creates a bond with their customer, not only out of concern for the customer's satisfaction during and after the sale, but also because of genuine interest in customer feedback that helps to improve the next generation of tools. Not sure I'm feeling that these days as strongly as I once did.
I do like the looks of the Cougar 3, and likely I'll try to pick one up after the season. I think that's the last bow Martin made that caught my interest. Shame they dropped the Cougar model from their lineup. I always liked the way their bows were named after cats...it created a brand identity...put the idea in your mind that their bows weren't inanimate objects like the competition, but living things with personality, wild and free. Now it seems they're getting away from that, too, with names like "SlayR", and "Tracer", "Crossfire", and "Exile". More keeping up with the competition. Next year they may have a couple bows named "Gut-Squisher", and "Donkey-Punch", with blinking red, white, and blue LED's, a cup holder, and a kick-stand.
I guess I will get Barnsdale's to make me up a nice set of limbs. And if I don't find a Cougar 3 by this coming summer, I think I'm going to make a move to traditional archery. Just love the looks of a recurve, always have. That's why I ordered the old girl with the recurved wood limbs, it was a connection to the past. I'm a romantic, I suppose.
I'm fortunate, for now, to have a spare bow that had been just sitting around. Picked up a Martin Orion Magnum bow kit for a song a few years ago, brand new, hard-case and all...everything still in plastic, tags still on, peep and dampers still loose on the string. Bought it from a guy I knew that sold store returns, blems, and damaged merch. Seems the hard-case took a hit during shipping, probably some jackass hot-rodding a forklift in a warehouse somewhere. Cracked the case, but it did it's job, and protected everything inside. Going to be doing a tech article about "fixing" the Dyna-cam. Keep an eye out for it, and let me know if it's helpful.
Promised a few pictures of the painted lady. As it seems she's being retired, it's the least I can do to show my appreciation for so many years of great service. Thought these were going to turn out much better, my camera usually takes great pics, but these look like they were taken while I was having an epileptic fit. I could try again if anybody is really interested, but here are these: