Remington And Ruger Rifle Recalls

BY Herschel Smith
7 years ago

Remington Model 700:

Remington Arms issued a safety warning and recall notice for two different rifles Friday after potential trigger issues can lead to an unintentional discharge.

The rifles include the Remington Model 700 and the Remington Model Seven rifles with X-Mark Pro triggers, manufactured from May 1, 2006 to April 9, 2014.

According to the company, senior engineers determined that some rifles with the XMP triggers could, under certain circumstances, unintentionally discharge.

The investigation determined that some of the triggers might have excess bonding agent used in the assembly process, which could cause the unintentional discharge.

I’m not intending to place the Ruger recall in the same category, but their SR-556-VT rifle is also having trigger issues.

The company is recalling all SR-556-VT rifles due to a problem with the trigger system.  Ruger says on its website that the disconnector can wear down early.  And that can cause delayed gunfire, or even double firing.  That’s when the gun fires as expected, when the trigger is pulled—but then again when it’s released.

Ruger says it hasn’t received any reports of delayed or double-firing from customers.

On its website, the company traces the problem to a vendor not properly heat treating the disconnector.  Ruger says rifle owners should contact the company for information on how to get their guns retrofitted.

It’s good that Ruger is getting out ahead of this (or appears to be).  Denying it is the wrong thing to do, morally and from a business perspective as well.

Remington 700 models have always had trigger issues, and it isn’t at all apparent that this recall is the same one that has caused Remington such problems in the past.

David Petzal was absolutely indignant over CNBC’s expose of Remington (I’m not sure indignation at CNBC is the right posture), while Dave Hardy simply posted the link (but the comments, especially this one, provide a lot more detail).  Sure, following proper muzzle discipline may have prevented some of these problems, but the point is that a machine that needs to function correctly simply needs to function correctly, no excuses.  Making excuses is for losers.

The most comprehensive and damning indictment of Remington and its trigger problems to date is still this article from Billings Gazette.  See especially this evidence in the margins of the article, and this evidence, and this evidence, and the rest of the evidence.

The original article discusses “Senior Engineers” with Remington.  I’m particularly partial to this work title, and I am a registered professional engineer.  Are these folks registered as PEs with the state?  If not, why?  We are rightly concerned about roads, bridges and buildings, power plants and their proper design.  Why not guns, and why shouldn’t these engineers be registered?

If they are, has the issue of Remington and the apparent internal evidence ever come to light with the state board of registration?  Why would senior engineers ignore evidence of improper function of machines they designed and manufacture?  Did these engineers consider it malfeasance to ignore such evidence, and if they didn’t see it or didn’t know the evidence existed, why not?

We have many more questions than we have answers.  It has been this way for a very long time with Remington.

UPDATE: Readers should always read between the lines in my articles, but due to an e-mail exchange I should emphasize my wording above: “… it isn’t at all apparent that this recall is the same one that has caused Remington such problems in the past.”  What isn’t apparent is more prominent than what is apparent.  The explanation of “excess bonding agent” screams out for further explanation.  And I’m not sure that the explanation wouldn’t implicate other issues unrelated to “excess bonding agent.”

UPDATE #2: Thanks to Uncle for the link.  Also, Military Times has a related article.

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Comments

  1. On April 25, 2014 at 7:28 am, BobSykes said:

    They almost certainly are not registered engineers. Every state exempts engineers who work for industrial firms from the registration requirement. The great majority of civil/environmental engineers work for companies that do not fall under the industrial exemption (most of the CE/EnvE companies are limited partnerships) and so are registered like you (and before I retired, me).

    This goes back to the early 20th Century when the registration laws were first enacted. I believe the rationale was that large industrial firms had deep pockets and could recompense the victims of any engineering errors the firms’ employees made. In those days, all CE/EnvE firms were closed partnerships, and although the partners’ personal wealth as well as the firms’ assets were at risk, these combined assets were too small is satisfy claims if a major structure failed.

    There are, however, quite a few registered mechanical, electrical, aeronautical and chemical engineers, although they are a minority. Many work for limited partnerships like their CE/EnvE cousins.

  2. On April 26, 2014 at 11:40 pm, Herschel Smith said:

    Thanks for the comment Bob. I certainly wouldn’t advocate that anyone regulate Remington or anyone else to require them to have PEs. It should be voluntary, and with accountability to oaths of ethics, it may make a difference. It does with most PEs.

    As for Remington, they have published the contributing cause of the failure, or if you will, a proximate cause. The immediate or root cause isn’t excess bonding agent. It can’t be. There must be a mechanical malfunction that initiated the recall. Remington hasn’t told us what that is yet.

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This article is filed under the category(s) Firearms,Guns and was published April 24th, 2014 by Herschel Smith.

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