After reviewing the gemtech section of silencertalk, I've noted many of the same type of quality control issues. It started me thinking about my first two suppressors and first experiences with Gemtech's legendary quality and customer service.
In my view now there is not a single Gem-tech product that is not made better than someone else with the sole exception of the Mk9k. Its interesting that Gem-tech had to modify their description of the G5 from "fully welded" to that there was some welding when some enterprising manufacturer cut open the can and checked to see if the baffle stack was truly fully welded and it was not. Then Dr. Dater came on the subguns.com board and others and launched into a explanation on how fully welding is a bad idea. If it was a bad idea, why did they lie that they had done it when they didn't? Usually lies are for your benefit not against your interests. Now the G5 description doesn't mention welding at all, but the HALO suppressor description touts fully welding as being important to strength.
It is interesting to note that Gem-tech removed their sound levels from their website complaining of other manufacturers copying their sound levels at the same time their products began testing below other manufacturers products in independent tests. This said they still make outlandish claims about sound reduction versus other suppressors. For example they state with regard to the 9mm Tundra suppressor they manufacture, that "With a totally redesigned baffle stack incorporating patented features, the TUNDRA has been independently tested and proven to be the most efficient design available in a dry, dedicated 9mm pistol suppressor." This statement is an absolute bold faced lie. It cannot be supported by testing at all and has been disproved a number of times. When given the opportunity to come to the silencer shoot hosted by Tier 1 Group Memphis they decline to attend while other manufacturers eagerly attend to display their wares and engage in side by side comparisons.
See below my personal experience with Gem-tech's amazing quality and customer service. Below is my personal experience with two of Gem-tech's quality suppressors and their customer service:http://www.subguns.com/boards/mgmsgarch ... ead=741399
Basically I ordered a new Gem-Tech Oasis in 2006. When it arrived at my dealer, the Oasis arrived without a front end cap. WTF? I mean seriously the quality control wasn't good enough to catch that the end cap wasn't attached. The dealer caught the problem when he took the Oasis out of the tube after my transfer was approved and had to call me to tell me that the GD suppressor had a problem and may have to be sent back. At the time I considered voiding the transfer, but Gem-Tech assured my dealer there was no problem and sent an endcap and instructed him in how to install it. This lack of quality control and their refusal to return and send a new suppressor and general concern about lack of quality control resulted in the dealer dropping his stocking dealership with Gemtech.
I got the suppressor and took it out shooting and had a baffle strike within the first 5rds. I realized that it was a problem when it got louder and then i saw a chunk go flying and it turns out it was the end cap which I was not able to locate.
I immediately contacted GT and they sent a shipping label and after fighting with fedex they agreed to allow me to ship it directly back to them. Approximately 6 months later I got the suppressor back. I should note that I expected a replacement as the threads on the end of the aluminum upper were partially torn off and I didn't think it could be fixed as a result of the damage to the threads. I was told by numerous people about GT's legendary customer service so I wasn't surprised when I received a suppressor and from looking at it, I assumed it had been replaced. At the time GT's website gave the impression that the Oasis was wholy made by Gemtech, however I was told that they had consulted with Tactical Solutions who made the upper and both they and Gem-Tech had agreed that it was an ammo issue, but that they would cover the repair and subrogate by discussing the issue with the ammo manufacturer. I was very thankful for the repair although I was absolutely LIVID when I learned Tactical Solutions had manufactured the upper and Gem-Tech had just jammed some baffles in it, engraved their info and mailed it to my dealer, and had not actually built the Oasis upper from the ground up as they indicated on their website.
After 6 months I got the suppressor back, and had to leave the country for a while, not having had the chance to shoot it once I got it back, but excited because the upper that came in looked brand new so I was under the impression it had been replaced. The customer service rep encouraged me to use quality ammo in the future and that I should be good to go. When I returned to the U.S. I purchased 500rds of rather expensive 22lr match target ammo from a major manufacturer. Three rounds into my day of shooting I suffered another end cap strike which blew off the end cap again. As you can imagine the GD threads are really messed up at this point and are barely visible. I called Gem-Tech up and discussed the issue with customer service who again sent a shipping label. After about 8 months of emails back and forth Gem-Tech acknowledged all they did the first time was replace the end cap and refinish the external finish on the tube. The second time they determined that Tactical Solutions had misdrilled the hole the steel barrel liner goes into and it was canted. To correct the problem, they had to redrill the barrel hole and place some filler in it to even out the barrel and install a new barrel liner. They then tried to fix the end cap threads in the aluminum upper a second time. As you can guess the threads almost go all of the way through the upper just to have enough aluminum threads for the end cap to catch on some threads so the end of the tube is very weak.
I asked for a refund and offered to allow Gem-Tech to keep the gun. Gem-Tech declined that option.
So 14 months into this suppressor I finally get it back. It jams consistently. I never shoot the gun as it is NOT quiet. Regardless of the ammo and mags used the same problems continue to occur. The cycling of the bolt is no where as smooth as it is in a standard ruger upper as I am not really certain the upper is completely in spec. Reliability upgrades including Volquartsen firing pin and exact edge extractor that are usually golden in most Ruger pistols have not improved reliability much. The chamber is too tight as well which still results in failures to feed completely and failures to eject from the chamber, let alone fully eject.
During this same time I also had my only other suppressor at the time my almost brand new GT Blackside out to the range. The rear endcap unscrewed off my HK USP Tactical 45 leaving only the endcap attached to the barrel. This to damaged the threads and resulted in it having to go back to gemtech to have the endcap tightened and loctite installed on the damaged threads.
While my friends and family all raved about Gem-Tech, I have to say that this experience permanently burned me on them. As a consolation prise they offered to sell me any suppressor they made at cost as a way to make up for the bad experience. I let my dealer use the discount to purchase a Halo suppressor. Imagine my surprise when a month after the Form 3 transfer was approved for the discounted HALO to my dealer Gemtech had the gemtax sale and sold the Halo for $50 less than "cost". Liars.
The irony of the whole thing is I moved and hadn't seen my dealer for quite a few years. I saw him about a month ago at a local show and he shouted to me when I was several tables away "hey that's that guy with that GD Gemtech Oasis f*ckup. Come tell this guy I wasn't lying!" It turns out he'd been telling him about my misfortune that very moment.