Guns and Gear

Magpul still in Colorado, customers starting to get irked

The gun parts manufacturer Magpul Industries made headlines six months ago when it threatened to leave Colorado in protest of its new gun laws, but is still in its same location in Boulder County.

And many of its customers and supporters aren’t too happy about it.

“Hmmm. I hope I am wrong, but I’m starting to feel dumb for buying a bunch of your stuff to support your company during your move and beyond,” Arizona customer Michael Franklin wrote on the company’s Facebook page last week. “What happened to the principles you were passionate about?”

The Daily Camera first reported the disgruntlement on Friday, but Magpul’s Facebook page has long been a place for its customers to speculate about what’s taking so long. Another company making good on its promise to find a more Second Amendment-friendly state, Fort Collins gun-sight manufacturer HiViz Shooting Systems, is well along in the process of moving to Wyoming.

Magpul has said its 30-round PMAG ammunition magazines, which are now outlawed in Colorado, are being made in another state and that it’s still in the process of relocating operations elsewhere.

But that excuse is wearing thin for some.

“They sold products under false pretenses,” wrote Ronny Johnson from Fort Worth, Texas, on Magpul’s Facebook page, calling the company’s move “smoke and mirrors.”

“People spent a TON of money supporting a company they believed was standing up for what a lot of people believed in by leaving the state of CO, when in reality … it looks to just be a marketing ploy,” he wrote. “That’s how they have lost a reputation.”

A Magpul spokesman told the Daily Camera that the company still intends to move, but that it’s a big undertaking.

“Rest assured, the move is going to take place, but we have to work through it on our own time,” said Duane Liptak, Magpul’s director of project management and marketing.

“We have to work through the move with our employees before we make any announcements,” he said. “It’s a big move, and there’s a lot going on.”

Magpul made national headlines by threatening to leave Colorado and states around the country began courting its business. Magpul employs more than 200 people and contributes millions to the Colorado economy.

It’s also been politically active, joining a lawsuit to overturn the magazine limitation law and another that requires universal background checks for gun transfers. Its military-style truck was parked in state Sen. Greg Brophy’s official parking space at the capitol during debate on the gun control bills.

And it staged a Second Amendment rally on the eve of the new laws going into effect, during which it gave away 1,500 PMAGs.

Now, once-loyal customers are wondering if it wasn’t all just a big PR stunt.

“I purchased Magpul products because they are made in America by Americans and because I thought as a company they were spot on in standing up for the Second Amendment and constitutional rights,” customer Steven Power wrote on the company’s Facebook page. “Sadly, it now looks to me and others that it was a brilliantly planned marketing ploy.”

“I no longer wish to support a company that says they are going to do something and they never do it,” he wrote. “I get enough of that crap from the politicians in Washington.”

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