P&S & Radical Bury The Hatchet

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Since our previous story, both P&S and Radical firearms have come to a mutually agreed truce, where both will remove the accusations about each other and a Radical Firearms employee has “been removed from accessing Radical Firearms social media platforms”.

The full post from P&S:

After hearing from our reviewer Shockey that Radical Firearms had visited his place of employment I felt it necessary to inform our readers as to why our review stopped. My understanding was a company was attempting to exert their influence to alter the outcome of our review. Looking at the from our limited and one-sided perspective this was our only logical conclusion.

Like with most things, there is my side, your side, and the truth somewhere in between. P&S reported too quickly before knowing both sides of the story and didn’t realize the reputation of both organizations could be harmed. To take this further, we advise people to contact the manufacturer if they encounter issues. I didn’t do that. Had I done that, this would not have been an issue.

After discussing both sides of the incident, Radical Firearms and Primary & Secondary forensically reconstructed the event including information from both sides to create one complete experience.

So put your torches and pitchforks away and sit down by the fire for a more complete retelling of what had occurred.

I can skip to the moral of the story here: it is amazing what is resolved when mature adults discuss their perspectives.

Begin Incident:
Just prior to SHOT 2016 I received an email from Radical Firearms in regards to Primary & Secondary conducting a review of one of their weapons. I presented the offer to the P&S Staff to discuss it. Matt Shockey (who I will refer to as Shock) responded in saying he is near their factory and he also has a range so conducting a review is no issue.

Shock and I have a common friend Major who I have known for years through the Direct Action Resource Center (DARC). Major had recently become the Law Enforcement (LE) sales rep for Radical. Major was a natural connection for Shock to begin the review.

Shock met with Major and Cris who is the VP of sales at the Radical Firearms facility for a tour. This tour was initiated due to the P&S review and had no bearing on his employment. He was not directed by his employer to conduct this tour. Shock signed an Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) to take a tour of the Radical Firearms facility and was impressed by their capability. This NDA did not include anything in regards to our P&S review or a police department review. During the tour Shock asked about Radical AR15’s having difficulty with Simunitions (sims), UTM, FOF rounds. He brought this up due to a prior review P&S conducted where a fully function rifle had no issues with live ammo but choked on Simunitions. Major and Cris did not know.

At the end of the tour Shock properly and legally acquired a complete Radical Firearms AR15 lower receiver. Shock intended to file a form 1 with this lower which he owned to create a short barreled rifle (SBR). Since it is treading a fine line to possess a complete AR15 upper with a barrel shorter than 16″ with a complete AR15 carbine lower, Shock opted to hold off on acquiring the complete upper receiver group. Major explained when Shock is ready, he needs to return to the factory and Shock will hand pick the parts from any bin to have a designated Blue Line gunsmith assemble his complete upper.

During this time Radical worked on prototyping a new chamber that could run sims as well as live ammo without issue.

Shock reached out to Major for a complete AR15 upper receiver group to be used at a sims intensive course at DARC. Major provided one of the prototype uppers for this trip. Shock was unaware this was a prototype and was under the impression this was his 12.5″ complete upper receiver group. Shock inspected the upper and noticed staking of the gas key was weak and he was able to move the fasteners. He immediately contacted Major and sent the bolt back.

Primary & Secondary has conducted other reviews. In those reviews the reviewer posts things as they observe them to the P&S forum or one of the P&S Facebook groups. They might fire off a few hundred rounds and report on that performance. They might make a short YouTube video of the reviewed weapon in action. These are done as the review is conducted so people can keep track of progress. This review was no different. As problems were found they were reported. Our past reviews also ran into speed bumps and required armorer support or factory support.

Shock took some time off from work to help with his newly born son.

Radical Firearms’ ownership found the reports of the issues Shock found and contacted the leadership within Radical to find out what was going on. Cris the Sales VP was under the impression the review Shock was conducting fell under the police department (PD) he worked for due to quite frequent visits from Shock’s local department. If it were a PD Test and Evaluation (T&E) of a prototype system, there absolutely was an expectation of an NDA being in play. Cris took Major to Shock’s PD to speak with Shock’s Assistant Chief to find out why a police T&E was being broadcast on social media with a prototype upper receiver. The Assistant Chief was unaware of the review.

Shock returned to work and was promptly called to that Assistant Chief’s office to explain what had occurred. The Assistant Chief noted this was being done independently of the PD and on Shock’s own time. No issue with the PD.

When Shock returned home from work he announced he was no longer conducting business with Radical Firearms because he viewed their interaction with his job to be an attempt to alter the review.

This is when I wrote up our response explaining why the review had been stopped.

Shock and I along with Major and David the COO of Radical Firearms had a telephone conference yesterday discussing what had occurred. We figured out what the issues were.

There were two different opinions of who, what, when, and why, but at the end of the day, we all understand that this could have been handled much differently with all parties involved and that we all have extremely mutual respect and understanding for one another.

Shock will be at Radical Firearms on Monday to initiate more contact and we absolutely, together, want to show the full potential of a Radical Firearms product, and how Primary & Secondary will give our most unbiased review yet.

Radical in the meantime, will remove all negative posts from their Facebook page and will issue a statement that, ” single Radical Firearms employee acted outside of the interests of Radical Firearms posting against negative reviews coming from online backlash, and don’t represent Radical Firearms as a whole. The employee has been removed from accessing Radical Firearms social media platforms.”



Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • flyingburgers

    Can somebody give me a TL;DR version? What does this have to do with somebody’s son, a SBR, Simunition, an armorer named Blue Line, something named DARC, etc?

    • derpmaster

      Meaningless AR Company #4562 got in a kerfluffle with Meaningless Gun Forum #2123 because they posted a rifle review without permission. Or something.

      • Vitsaus

        Damn, that was stone cold.

    • JSmath

      The gun sent for the review wasn’t a good example, for a bunch of a reasons. Both sides say sorry ’bout the bad press.

      • Andrew

        If the “review” upper that was hand fitted by their top gunsmith using hand picked premium parts was a pile of crap…what does that say about all the lower tier production uppers they churn out for us common folk?

        • BillC

          You didn’t read it, did you?

          • teesquare

            Bill – do yo own stock in one of these companies…or do you just need a laxative?

        • RocketScientist

          Well, had you read the article, you’d see BOTH parties are now claiming that the upper that was sent was an un-tested prototype upper specifically designed to reliably fire simuntions (after the reviewer asked about that specific capability).

          • Ondřej Tůma

            What I’m wondering about is this: in the original P&S post, the reviewer complained about the lower not fitting with the upper and having to hammer out the pins. Not this article only speaks about prototype chamber.

            How could a prototype chamber possibly cause a bad fit of the upper to the lower is slightly beyond my understanding.

        • Tom Currie

          Hey, Andrew — why not get someone who can read to come by and read the article to you, slowly, in small words.

    • BillC

      Lazy. You are part of the problem of the internet. “I want to comment, but not read.”

      • Russ Kell

        ^ That, right there.

      • kingghidorah

        That’s me all right.

      • Kafir1911

        We did not need to hear all the BS anyway.

  • Jeff Smith

    Why does this read like a deposition?

    • The author is a police officer who wrote it up as a timeline using info from both sides and approved from both sides.

      • Russ Kell

        That. I still write some things out that way and I’ve been retired from LE for a long time

    • KestrelBike

      I was imagining it more as something you’d overhear at the next table in a place like this:

  • Kivaari

    When in doubt, write it out. An old chief’s admonition that applies to just about every aspect of life.

  • Edeco

    Oh lordy nevermind, this is turning into a soap opera. Stopped reading at the part about somebody taking off to be with a son. I’m just going to think ill of both parties now.

    • BillC

      How’s it a soap opera? It was a misunderstanding that went public. The cause was identified, and both parties have moved on.

      You are the one with the problem that self-admitted to stopped reading with only half the story to go, which was only paragraphs left. Reading too hard?

      • Edeco

        What can I say, I’m that which is wrong with the internet 😀

      • Kafir1911

        It started as a soap opera and ended the same way. Some millennia’s away from their safe places I suspect.

      • RSG

        Well, I read it all and have come to a decision- I won’t ever read P&S nor will I EVER buy anything from Radical. I’ve owned/trained with firearms longer than most of these kids have been alive. I also know lots of folks in the gun community. I’ll give them the same advice.

    • CavScout

      Ugh, true story. Though not much interest in either prior to this. People have been watching too many A&E,HBO, Netflix, Amazon, Vulu, etc etc TV shows. Just a bunch of soaps and it’s effecting people apparently.

  • The_manBEar

    Aw how sweet … how gives a fucʞ

    • Longhaired Redneck

      I love the inverted font thingy you have going on there!

  • Joseph Goins

    P&S reported too quickly before knowing both sides of the story and didn’t realize the reputation of both organizations could be harmed.

    Translation: Primary & Secondary realized that they would never get another free product from any company ever again, and it was in their best interest to kiss and make up.

    • Nope! P&S doesn’t want free stuff.

      • Jim N Jenna SK

        But you would take it if someone offered a free item.

        • I have accepted free items from companies we have active business dealings with.

          I don’t accept items from companies that I am not associated, there have been offers and I have either refused or offered retail payment for.

      • Joseph Goins

        “Free” doesn’t necessarily mean “a product to keep.” Free to review for a few weeks is still free.

    • BillC

      It wasn’t a “Free” product. The officer already owned the lower and the upper appeared to be loaned for review/testing.

      • Joseph Goins

        “Free toy to test” and “free to own permanently” are both free. I meant the former.

        • T&E is normally a company providing an item without cost for a specific duration of time for the purpose if review.

  • Cal S.

    Well, there’s that “C”-word: Communication.

  • DanGoodShot

    Is it just me or does anyone else find this a little hard to follow… idk, maybe I’m just retarded but if this is what communication between them was like, no wounder there was confusion.

  • plumber576

    With all of this drama you’d think suppressors would be involved.
    Drama always follows suppressors.

  • Andrew

    So…if the “review” upper that was hand fitted by their top gunsmith using hand picked premium parts was a pile of crap…what does that say about all the lower tier production uppers they churn out for us common folk?

    • BillC

      You didn’t read it. He was given a PROTOTYPE upper, under the misconception that he was reviewing/testing for the department under the need for an upper that worked better with simunitions. This conclusion was reached because when he first toured the factory, he specifically asked about steps being taken for working with sims; and his department has been known to reach out to RF frequently in an official capacity.

      So a guy at RF became “mad” because the officer made public statements on a prototype upper, and the employee thought the officer signed a NDA AND was reviewing it for the department.

      It seems to be purely a case of misunderstandings and assumptions getting a bit out of hand. The only reason why it’s a “deal” and you’re being a D-Bag is people love to hate on things.

    • Bruce Wayne

      EXACTLY! If that is what their TOP gunsmith is putting out then I will pass.

  • Captain Obvious

    And why do we care? Uh…..we don’t.

  • Pete Sheppard

    This reads to me like adults acting like adults and working the issue through, amicably.

  • nova3930

    If Radical put this much effort into not making junk….

    • Steve

      Right?

  • Jim N Jenna SK

    Men… Acting like women. I’m a part of that p&s group on Facebook. I hate how cocky those people are. Small penis? Bullied in school? Not sure but it’s very obvious. Try starting a post in that group. See what happens.

    • Why bother staying?

      A lot of people mistake experience for being cocky.

      • teesquare

        Sorry Matt…but you saying that clearly says you identify with “cocky”.
        People of real experience – in ANYTHING – have no need to beat their chests.
        They have nothing to prove and they posses true confidence- which is the real man’s version of cockiness.
        Real confidence allows a person to perform – and not feel a need to gloat, or even depend on the approval of others to know if he “got the job done”. He typically shuns the public accolades of sycophants ( plug in wherever you see yourself in this…..). And – usually – he doesn’t even talk about “IT”.
        And – if you feel the need to argue with my explanation – then you have never been called on by this country to perform a task, duty, obligation – and honor – that is greater than you. Such is a humbling experience, I can assure you. To tarnish it with “cockiness” is beneath my imagination.

        • If someone does not have a realistic frame of reference and they are corrected by someone with real world experience – that isn’t cocky.

  • Steve

    Sigh…

  • Repoman3737

    This is why a quick phone call is always a good idea before you decide to nuke a bridge. If you feel someone is not doing right by you no matter what type of interaction you need to have atleast one conversation with only that person so you can get info from the source and no chance of miscommunication by any one else. If the person won’t speak with you then feel free to nuke away if that’s what you need to do. So many small things turn into giant stupid things because people assume and refuse to make a quick call to check. This is a perfect example of 2 company’s almost seriously damaging their reputations over a misunderstanding.

  • kingghidorah

    Wait, who are these people?

  • Lee Enfield

    Bailiff….whack his pee-pee.

  • Bookoodinkydow

    Bottom line, would you own a Radical ?

    • RSG

      Never

  • teesquare

    Shheeeesh…..
    Well, at least after both parties bladders were empty, they zipped up and shook off their shoes….
    Here – is a thought: WHY not act like adults from the start? What a concept – huh?
    Guns + ego = stupid decisions – everythime!

  • Tom Currie

    Bottom line: P&S screwed the pooch badly by publicizing a bunch of half-truths and lies — then TFB screwed that same pooch as badly or worse with the total nonsense article damning Radical Arms for a problem that absolutely did not happen the way P&S described it. Yes, TFB screwed up badly because they chose to accept and republish everything from P&S without any fact checking. Matt Shockey is the child who threw the temper tantrum that started this mess (I will remember to take ANYTHING from P&S with a large grain of salt, and to totally ignore anything that Shockey is involved with in any way.)

    • What did P&S post that was a half truth or a lie?

  • Kafir1911

    “forensically reconstructed” this event. What hogwash and BS. If I never hear of either organization again that will be great.

  • Grant

    I own a Radical production upper and I can attest that I have absolutely none of the problems with how it fits to my lower, or any key staking issues. It shoots great, just like any other properly made upper.

  • Rufus

    Good lord, this reads like two junior high school girls fighting over a boy! And the grammar, it’s junior high school quality, too.

    TFB, this crap isn’t worthy of being posted. Move on, please!

  • sliversimpson

    That’s a pretty classy resolution. I’m glad they got it figured out.

  • SPQR9

    Yeah … right.

  • RSG

    “Our most unbiased review yet”???? Meaning they admit previous reviews have been biased? What a cluster fudge.

    • Steve

      This is why I have trust issues…