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Thread: Starting to lose patience and respect for Martin customer service

  1. #1
    Senior Member Rockyhud's Avatar
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    Default Starting to lose patience and respect for Martin customer service

    I never thought I'd come to think this way towards Martin Archery, but the last 3 months have brought me to this. I'll outline what's happened during this time so anyone interested can follow along and see why. I apologize before hand for the long read to those who venture into this story.

    1) Last December 2013, mid-month, I noticed some warpage in the lower cam and took my bow in to Sportsman's Warehouse (where I bought it) for their archery shop pros to assess whether this should be of concern or not. They agreed it wasn't normal and the cam, or both cams, should be replaced. I don't know how this condition came to be but none the less, it wasn't there before. As it was the week of Christmas when I took it to Sportsman's Warehouse (referred to for brevity here on as SW) I knew it could take several days before anything started happening toward resolving the issue.

    2) About 3 weeks later (towards the end of January) I got a call from SW that Martin Archery had agreed to warranty the defective cam and was sending a set of new Nitro 3 cams, new string and new cables and new style roto-cups (the ones with side wings). This sounded promising. After waiting another couple of weeks they finally arrived and I took the bow to SW so they could swap the parts. This is now the first to second week of February. The SW pro started to take down the bow to replace the cams, only to find the Nitro cams wouldn't fit in the gap of the old style limbs on my bow. The old limbs also wouldn't fit inside the gap between the side wings of the new roto-cups. So, he called Martin Archery to report this and requested they send a pair of new style limbs so the Nitro cams and roto-cups would fit.

    3) After waiting another week to 10 days (now this is late Feb) the new limbs arrive. The SW pro removes the old limbs and original style roto-cups, only to find the new roto-cups aren't compatible with the the riser (both apparently have male parts that won't allow the new style roto-cups to sit in the riser). At this point the pro is exasperated and calls Martin Archery to explain the situation. They have him box the entire bow and all parts and send it to their factory to have the repair work done. I agreed this was the best thing to do at this point.

    4) After 3 weeks, which I completely understand as this included shipping both ways and time in the factory for repair, the bow arrived back at SW and appeared to be all good, at least initially. This is now mid March. When I get to SW after work the SW pro tells me he noticed the string suppressor is hard against the string and is actually pushing out against it and he can't adjust the rod short enough so it doesn't. I also take note that the bow seems overall longer and it visually seems the limbs aren't nearly as close to parallel as they had been before, but for the moment I dismiss that as being any kind of issue. We take the bow to their shooting lane and I get ready to shoot my first arrow. As I previously had the draw weight set to 65 lbs I'm ready to exert the same effort to draw back as I had before. The string comes back to full draw AMAZINGLY fast and easy. The SW pro said he was surprised and saw the surprise in my eyes as well as I told him I couldn't believe how easy and light it felt. I went ahead and shot the arrow and it left the bow fine - nothing broke or sounded bad. I nocked another arrow and again felt the same absolute ease of drawing the bow as the first time. At this point I looked at the sticker on the lower limb and couldn't believe what I saw. It listed the peak draw weight as 45 lbs!!! We were dumb founded by this so the SW pro put the bow on the draw weight scales and sure enough, it peaked at 46 lbs. EVERYONE is so downhearted and surprised the pro repeated the draw weight scale exercise just to make sure, but there's no mistake. It maxes out 46 lbs!!! We're all shaking out heads that Martin would let this bow leave their factory and not realize they replaced the 70-lb limbs with 45-lb limbs!!! The SW pro says he'll call Martin Archery, AGAIN, to have them send 70-lb limbs.

    5) While I'm waiting for the new limbs to arrive I take the bow home so SW doesn't have to store it on site. During this time I decided to look into why the string suppressor was so hard against the string and see if I could adjust it properly. I quickly determined the string suppressor rod was already seated as deeply into the blind hole as it could be so I began to think I'll simply take about a 1/4" off its length and see if that will fix the problem. While I'm mentally working through this I decided to see what the brace height and axle-to-axle measured. To my surprise, the brace height was exactly 6-1/2" (1/2" shorter than it should be) and the axle to axle measured 34-3/8" (right at 2" longer than it should be). Now the reason for the string suppressor being hard against the string makes sense, being as the string is now 1/2" closer to the riser than it used to be. I went ahead and cut 3/8" off the rod and it helped but the string was still in solid contact with the suppressor afterward. I didn't want to cut any more length off the rod, thinking that the brace height will eventually be back to normal once all issues are resolved and didn't want it to be too short when everything is right again. Even with this development I decided to shoot the bow with my own arrows to see how it behaved. Even though it was WAY below my usual draw weight it shot very consistent and grouped arrows nicely out to 30 yards (that's as far as I shot since it was so much lower draw weight). It also was louder, as I expected, since the string was hitting the suppressor so hard, but not as loud as I thought it might be. While I had the bow I shot about 70-80 arrows, just to reacquaint myself with the bow and allow the string and cables to break-in and stretch all they would.

    6) After waiting over 2 weeks for the new limbs to arrive I get a call today from the SW pro saying the new limbs have arrived. This brings us to the current date (Thursday, March 27 -- 3 months from when this whole fiasco started). He tells me the limbs were in a shipping package along with a separate sticker supposedly indicating they are 70-lb limbs, but the sticker is NOT applied to the limbs, just simply included in the package to be applied to the limbs. The limbs have no markings on them to indicate what their draw weight is rated. This doesn't make sense but that's how they were shipped. So now the SW pro takes the bow down and installs the new limbs and reassembles everything and puts it on a draw hook to ensure everything is in place and working properly. He then puts the bow on the draw weight scales and I can tell something is wrong. He does it again and then says it peaks at 50-lbs now, even with the supposed 70-lb limbs. We're both looking at each other and can't believe this is happening AGAIN, that Martin Archery seems to have screwed up AGAIN and sent incorrect parts. The SW pro is honestly trying to make this right for me but he's now at the point of saying that he can't do anything more and that Martin Archery needs to do WHATEVER IT TAKES TO MAKE THIS SITUATION RIGHT FOR ME!!! I'm in total agreement. It's now 3 months after bringing my bow in for warranty service and it's STILL nowhere close to being resolved. And now it looks like I'll totally miss out on having my bow to use for spring turkey season that starts mid-April, not to mention that I won't have a bow that I can simply use and get ready for my summer/fall elk, bear and pronghorn hunts.

    I have been very patient and haven't gotten rude or even raised my voice to ANYONE this whole time, especially the SW pro who's been trying his best to get this resolved. But I'm about out of patience after all the screw-ups that all appear to be coming from Martin Archery and their customer service dept. The SW pro is calling Martin Archery tomorrow and telling them they need to take charge of this situation and get my bow fixed CORRECTLY once and for all and do so as quickly as possible. Either that or they need to replace my bow, if they can't restore it to its original specs and performance. He's also going to emphasize if they decide to replace my bow they must remove several items (arrow rest, sight bar mount, sight alignment device, quiver mount, custom upper STS and custom grips) and return them either separately or with the replacement bow.

    I know this has been a long read for anyone who has taken an interest in my plight, but I thought this lack of attention to details on Martin Archery's part and the frustration it's caused me AND the SW pro needs to be made public so customers, and hopefully Martin Archery, will take note and do what's necessary to make this right. I know there have been several others on this forum and AT that have voiced their frustration with Martin lately and I try to take into account the company is under new ownership and trying to fix a lot of internal problems along with coming up with new products and also dealing with warranty issues on bows the new employees aren't necessarily familiar with. But patience and understanding can only withstand so much before the situation becomes a canker sore that just festers and leaves a bad memory.

    OK, I'm done for now and will get off the soapbox. If anyone honestly believes I'm wrong please explain so I can see how or where. Thanks.
    08/12 Martin Firecat Pro-X (29" DL, 67,5# DW), Nitro 3 cams, home-made bent cable guard rod, new VEMs, DS Advantage/HHA Pro-5519 front sight, No-Peep Sight Eliminator, Limb-Driver arrow rest, B-Stinger stabilizer, custom lower & upper STS with offset stops, G5 Head-Loc quiver on custom mounting bracket. Gold Tip Velocity XT300 arrows with Bi-Delta 2.5" Sharkstooth vanes and Grizzly single-bevel broadheads, 498 grains at 262 fps (22% FOC)

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Arrow Splitter's Avatar
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    I'm sorry to hear that Rocky. I'd call Martin directly myself.

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  3. #3
    Senior Member GB3YO's Avatar
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    Man what a headache sorry for your troubles I used to say call them yourself but after last week bein told they wouldnt send me a limb bolt nut cause I wasnt a dealer when the month before they sent me replacement draw mods so kinda of upset myself with CS. I bought a set of barnesdale limbs for one of my bows and will probaly buy some more.I went through almost the same thing in 2011 bought a new bow and didnt even hunt with it that year cause it couldnt keep it limbs.
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    I'm sorry to hear that,I would say it's a good chance your DW is so low because the ATA is so far out of spec. Possible they installed wrong strings or cables. Regardless Martin should make it right ASAP.jmho
    2012 Pantera Magnum 70#
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    Super Moderator FishingandHuntingUSA's Avatar
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    Any time you start frankensteining a bow, which is basically what happened, they were trying to replace parts not meant for your bow.
    No one knows quite what you will end up with, Martin should have just said they do not have the correct limbs or cams for your bow
    and offered a discount for you to trade in on a new bow. When the new owners took over it was a night mare and they actually did not have to
    make good on all the warranties issues of the previous owners. They are doing this which is causing problems and costing them a lot of money.
    I would call them personally and see if they would be willing to let you trade in that bow that can not be fixed correctly.
    They have come a long way in just few months but have a giant mess to clean up while trying to build back a company that
    was ran into the ground.

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    Quiet long enough..... I'm sorry for you, but glad some one else knows what I went through working on Martin bows at the shop and my own 2010 Shadowcat. Martin, at the factory couldn't make my Shadowcat right after I spent 2 months trying everything they sent me. And then I got a 2012 Scepter V with a riser looking like came from a scrap tub... Yeah, I know what real heart break feels like....
    Former and current Back Yard Champion. I beat myself

  7. #7
    Senior Member droppixel's Avatar
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    Pretty crappy situation that is for sure. Regardless if you choose to send the bow in for warranty work, I'd always remove any of your accessory pieces, rather not take the risk in those pieces being damaged as well in the shipping process as they have no obligation to cover those. However, I will say I feel there have been some breaks in their communication chain and this is something that was brought up on AT and Rich had commented on it and said he will be looking into it personally. I believe they are bringing on or have brought on a new CS supervisor/manager guy and that alone could be part of the problem. If they are trying to take care of any previous issues and things just aren't sorted out properly. I'm coming up on a month from when I was first contacted about the Jaguar takedown. I delayed that process myself in asking about a credit towards another bow in place of the Jag - that has slowed things down, but there will be week stretches where I hear from no one and then the messages that I've sent are responded to by someone else, who must not have got the full message prior.

    It is going to take a little bit of time to kick the bugs out and right now there are some people that are having to deal with those growing pains and that alone is unfortunate. In the end, I'm sure they will do right for you, but until then I know that there is going to be a bad taste in your mouth that will hopefully, eventually, go away once it is all said and done.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Rockyhud's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FishingandHuntingUSA View Post
    Any time you start frankensteining a bow, which is basically what happened, they were trying to replace parts not meant for your bow.
    No one knows quite what you will end up with, Martin should have just said they do not have the correct limbs or cams for your bow
    and offered a discount for you to trade in on a new bow. When the new owners took over it was a night mare and they actually did not have to
    make good on all the warranties issues of the previous owners. They are doing this which is causing problems and costing them a lot of money.
    I would call them personally and see if they would be willing to let you trade in that bow that can not be fixed correctly.
    They have come a long way in just few months but have a giant mess to clean up while trying to build back a company that
    was ran into the ground.
    Thanks to all for your feedback. I have contemplated calling Martin directly, but as others have discovered, it doesn't seem to do much good since they apparently won't send warranty parts to individuals; only dealers. Plus, I and the SW pro have lost confidence in trusting ANY limbs Martin would send out are going to restore my bow to its original 70-lb draw weight.

    I somewhat disagree with FishingandHuntingUSA's comment about the parts Martin has been trying not being meant for my bow. The 2010 Firecat TR2, from the factory, had basically the same riser (main difference being the use of the CCS instead of cable rod and slide) as mine but had the new style roto-cups (with side wings) and limbs (1-1/2" wide the entire length) and CAT-2 cams. With the difference being the Nitro 3 cams, which are very similar to my original CAT and TR2's CAT-2 cams, these are the same type parts Martin installed on my bow when it was in their factory as well as what they sent as replacements to SW. Also, if I recall correctly, Barry had these same warranty "upgrades" applied to a 2008 Firecat he used to have and had none of the issues I'm experiencing. So, based on all that, Martin should have compatible replacement parts that should be enable them to restore my bow to full functionality. Maybe I'm missing something but if so, it isn't clear to me what that would be. Plus, considering the fact Martin installed 45-lb limbs instead of 70-lb limbs while they had the bow, shows me they weren't paying attention to details. I'm just hoping this can and will be resolved properly very soon.
    08/12 Martin Firecat Pro-X (29" DL, 67,5# DW), Nitro 3 cams, home-made bent cable guard rod, new VEMs, DS Advantage/HHA Pro-5519 front sight, No-Peep Sight Eliminator, Limb-Driver arrow rest, B-Stinger stabilizer, custom lower & upper STS with offset stops, G5 Head-Loc quiver on custom mounting bracket. Gold Tip Velocity XT300 arrows with Bi-Delta 2.5" Sharkstooth vanes and Grizzly single-bevel broadheads, 498 grains at 262 fps (22% FOC)

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    Senior Member Rockyhud's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice, droppixel, on removing all accessories before sending it in. I'd truly hate to not get any one of these items back. I just created a text file listing all these parts so I can take it to SW and request they remove them or allow me to do so before the bow gets shipped back, if indeed Martin instructs them to do so. Even though that means I'll have to take time to reinstall everything and align them all, that's a better prospect than trying to resolve getting missing or damaged parts replaced.
    08/12 Martin Firecat Pro-X (29" DL, 67,5# DW), Nitro 3 cams, home-made bent cable guard rod, new VEMs, DS Advantage/HHA Pro-5519 front sight, No-Peep Sight Eliminator, Limb-Driver arrow rest, B-Stinger stabilizer, custom lower & upper STS with offset stops, G5 Head-Loc quiver on custom mounting bracket. Gold Tip Velocity XT300 arrows with Bi-Delta 2.5" Sharkstooth vanes and Grizzly single-bevel broadheads, 498 grains at 262 fps (22% FOC)

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    Super Moderator bfisher's Avatar
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    This is a bad case of incompetence. I've read every word you wrote and here's my take on the situation. Somebody at Martin dropped the ball when repairing your bow. I feel safe in judging that the reason the draw weight is so low is that the cable/string on the bow are too long and it isn't with the limbs. This should have been evident from the start due to the long ATA and low brace height. If you and/or your bow technician missed this then I'd call it an oversight due to frustration. However, after sending the bow back to Martin, whoever did the repair work should have checked the bow for draw weight before shipping it. Apparently this wasn't done.

    Were I you I would call again and try to talk to somebody up the food chain (maybe Jason Erdman) and see if they would take charge of getting the bow done correctly. The company has been in transition for several months, but I'd be willing to bet the new management will do their best to resolve your issue if it were brought to their attention.
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