Olympic Arms Closes, Cancels Warranties

Another long-standing name in firearms is closing its doors. On January 25th, Olympic Arms announced it will officially close down completely at the end of February. Olympic Arms has been the manufacturer of AR-style rifles and popular 1911 handguns for more than 40 years and were the first to create an AR pistol. Operations will cease on February 28th.

Olympic Arms was started in 1956 by gunsmith Robert C. Schuetz. Schuetz was the partner of famed gunsmith P.O. Ackley, inventor the many wildcat “Ackley Improved” cartridges. After leaving his partnership with Ackley, Schuetz founded the Schuetzen Gun Works in Colorado and began machining high-quality rifle barrels. In 1975, the company moved to Olympia, Washington and expanded operations to begin machining bolt-action rifles. Then, in 1982 SGW spun off a new brand name under Olympic Arms to create and manufacture AR-style rifles. Five years later, it acquired M-S Safari Arms, and began selling 1911 handguns under the Safari Arms brand.

The OA-93, the first AR-style pistol released by Olympic Arms in 1993.

The OA-93, the first AR-style pistol released by Olympic Arms in 1993.

Under the banner of Olympic Arms, the company released many new and innovative models of ARs. Among these was the controversial OA-93, the first AR pistol. Chambered in both .223 Remington and 7.62x39mm, the OA-93 was introduced in 1993. Unfortunately, because of the chambering in 7.62mm, release of the OA-93 triggered the ATF to reclassify the cheap steel core 7.62 ammunition as “armor piercing ammunition.” This ban on steel-core 7.62 infuriated many gun owners, who blamed Robert Schuetz and Olympic Arms for stopping the flow of cheap military-surplus ammo.

The announcement of the closing comes on the heels of the Washington Attorney General proposing a weapons ban and a licensing requirement for owners of so-called “assault weapons.” These new bills, if passed would negatively impact Olympic Arms. There does not seem, however, to be any connection between these bills being announced and Olympic Arms’ decision to close down. Defender Outdoors will continue to sell Olympic Arms products until supplies run out. Though Olympic Arms will no longer offer manufacturer warranties on their products, you may want to pick up an Olympic rifle as a keepsake!

What do you think of Olympic Arms’ announcement? Let us know in the comments!

27 Comments On This Article

  1. I love their products! I’ve had one of their ARs for almost 25 years and it still runs like a champ! Too bad they’re shutting down.

  2. I’m very sorry to hear that Olympic Arms is shutting down, there is far to many gun manufacturers and gun gear makers having to shutdown during to antigun administration ‘s. Yes we have a pro-gun government but still have antigunners in the state and city governments. As we can we should vote them out of office.

  3. Well, don’t that just suck! While I don’t own any Olympic Arms firearms, I have a very high opinion of them, well, until now! Yes, the BATF&E opinion that 7.62 MM ammo was “Armor Piercing” is technically correct, it’s because of the power generated, not the materials used. That’s another one for President Trump to fix. And, yes, Oly Arms did design the AR system into a “pistol”, but, the only advantage it has over a full sized rifle is that it’s smaller, which, in fact, IMHO, makes it harder to use! I’m sure that OLY Arms had no ill intention towards the shooting public when they started selling these, and I bet they don’t sell very many of them! I say that to say this about OLY ARMS, the current political situation everywhere on the West Coast is deplorable, and I can understand why you do not want to operate under those conditions, but, maybe the owners should move to a more “Gun Friendly” state in which to operate? To just shut down, after selling the numbers of firearms they have in the past 40 years, and all the warranties that OLY is now voiding is a slap in the face to anyone who holds such a warranty! I am glad I don’t own anything with the OLY name stamped on it!

    • Could be, but All rightly then,you’re entitled to you’re own opinion,but long winded editorials smell of a happy Gun control nut/As far as any legislation,will not pass,# 1 Registration Infringes on our rights period,jt’s like Obuma care read the 9th Amendment.

      The AG of WA/but WA has a Constitutional Right and The AR Rifle is not classified by the ATF as an Assault Rifle/It is calssafied as a Sports Rifle built for the US Citizenry. Any Gun control ban will not pass( Hilary and Bill are now forever Irrelevant ) she lost Dummies.,get over it. Trump will blow it all out of the water soon. across America. Only the Voters in the Wholes State say so.Calif type legislation will not make it. This Insanity,is never going to happen.

      I bet Aero-Precision is happier than a lark in spring time. New style uppers and free float barrels, hand guards and barrel Nut technology has Blown the competition away ,as Rifle precision shooting is King.As Ap forges for other AR Manufacturers as Germany /Swiss Arms SIG SAUER is in game too.

  4. This is extremely bad news, I have visited their company and show room and few times in the past. Here’s hoping their employees find new jobs as soon as possible.
    I moved from Washington. 10 years ago for employment reasons, and during that time it seems the state has really gone down hill liberally probably if I would have stayed, in the future I would have been arrested for not registering all of my ARs and my many,many 30 round magazines. Careful resistance is the key

  5. Well…as the owner of two Oly AR-15’s imagine my surprise when I read that my warranties have been voided without any advance warning. Other gun manufacturers have moved from unfriendly areas so they can continue operations instead of screwing legitimate loyal customers. The way this was handled is totally unsat and just shows what little regard Olympic Arms has for its customers. Wish they would institute a buy-back – I would gladly send my rifles back and purchase from a different manufacturer. Oly Arms – you suck.

  6. It is very sad news to hear Olympic Arms is closing their doors. I have owned one of their Ultra Match rifles for decades. It shoots 1/2 MOA. A shooter cannot ask for better than that. I wish they would simply move to a gun friendly state, like Arizona. Olympic Arms will be missed.

  7. Time will tell as to why Olympic Arms is giving it up. If the enviroment in Washington is unfriendly, there are more states than not that would be glad to have them be a manufacturer in their state. The move could be costly but if the desire to continue is strong enough, it would be worth it. Firearms manufacturering has become quite competitive and the profit margins may be less than one would like. I would think that OA would be interested in running a repair center to keep their arms and products supported. That said, is there any reason to just quit and walk away? Probably so. Maybe just tired of fighting all the BS in a pissy LIBERAL RUN state! God bless America and God Bless the new president.

  8. I do own Oly arms, there 223WSM rifle, the 223 rifle based on the pistol upper with no buffer tube thus the first folding stock AR, an OA93, and a OA98. No problems with any although not used to hard core round counts. I did however put steal cased ammo through my AR pistol with no problems but a lot of fun. I think OLy Arms banned their warranty if you used steel cased ammo to hit back at the ammo ban they were accused of creating. Oh well the warranty is gone now anyway who would have known? I got my FFL 15 years ago and was going to become an OLY stocking dealer but they had no inventory to qualify my status. I ordered 1/2 dozen of there Plinker AR’s anyway but I got a call well over a year later that they were ready. I ordered a long slide .45 1911 at the first shot show I attended from them because I still had respect for their weapons, It got delivered over 2 years later. OLY did give me a free custom serial number for waiting and an extra pair of better grips but I liked their scorpion grips better. It seems stupid but those scorpion grips helped sell me on the pistol in the first place! It has never been fired. I still own all the weapons. Nobody wanted to buy the folding AR as it was too expensive I am thinking. Retail was over a grand a decade and a half ago. I did help a friend from the National Guard fire the 233 WSSM (super short magnum) to help her qualify for duty. I was too lazy to zero the weapon myself and I wanted her to fire something really cool that still qualified as the AR qualification. She was good! Weapon zeroed, and I got to watch a ray gun in action.

  9. 2 of my friends and I bought their copy of the Whitney Wolverine pistol. They failed to feed no matter what ammo we used. When we contacted the factory they said the magazines were bad and sent us new ones and told us what ammo we should use. We tried them with the same results. These pistols were absolute garbage. I would never buy another of their products.

  10. Article didn’t explain reasoning for the closure. Certainly can’t be sales as gun sales continue to climb, even under Trump… Sad…

  11. My Olympic Arms product is a Carbine upper in 7.62×39 . Paired with AR Stoner Mags . It has given me years of great service . They will be missed . If you can still find any of their products they are worth getting .

  12. I bought a 16 inch Olympic Arms AR about 1993 with a broach cut unlined barrel. It has always been one the most accurate AR rifles that I have ever had. I will be sorry to see them go.

  13. I don’t own anything from Olympic Arms but I will tell you the anti firearm industry in Washington State is in full swing! Bob Ferguson is going to do his best to make sure all Washington residence are dissarmed! Sad to see another business go by the wayside in Washington. If your not Boeing, Microsoft, Starbucks or Amazon you have no voice. And all of them are screaming for anti gun legislation.

  14. I ordered some parts for my original Whitney just to cover a few bases in case something breaks or I loose a small piece. I am not sure how many are actually on hand. The CS fellow I spoke to said he did not have an invoice of what was available.
    So we shall see.

  15. Wow, I am so upset now that after shooting 300 rds 5.56 thru my OA93 , NOW it shoots single shot, I don’t know why, I cleaned it and oiled it good. But now it shoots single shot , I have to pull back and spit out the empty shell so it can put a new rd in, everytime.
    Anyone have any ideas?

  16. Legislation didn’t shut these guys down. The competition did. Several companies manufacture AR components here and sell them way cheaper than Oly. Outside of Seattle the state is very firearm friendly.

  17. Wow, A full on rant from the guy who doesn’t even own one? On what ground do you stand to qualify your opinion? Some people would bitch if they were hung with a new rope.

  18. Own 4 Oly’s. But I’m not one bit saddened or surprised to stumble upon this news! In fact, even tho I now have four voided warrants, the news warms the cockles of my heart! I experienced the worst, rude and obnoxious “customer service” ever, dealing with them over the phone. And it was’nt just one guy! Bought my first Oly CAR15 at a gun show in 91. Had just got a Colt “green label”, HBAR, ( for those of you old or informed enough to even know what that is) earlier that year and was wanting a CAR. (Old school m4) Came across a dealer selling an Oly at that show. Was very impressed with the over all quality. Considered it better than the Colt. Years latter around 2011, picked up one “plinker” and two “SS16’s for my boys. (m4’s with stainless match grade bull barrel) It was only after that, I had the “pleasure”, of dealing with them over the phone. When later I wanted to buy OEM parts and accessories. Complete jackass’s! And the problem was systemic there! You where made to feel like they were doing you a “favor”, to answer the phone. What’s worse, is after being treated like crap, when I decided to call back and complain about my experience, there solution was to “flag” my name and number. So that any time in the future that I may call, I would be routed the very guy I called to report!!! How smart was that! How’s that for wiping their ass on their customers !?? In all fairness, there was one guy there, (don’t recall names) and I do mean ONE, guy that was OK. If you never dealt with the people in there “customer service” dept, you DONT KNOW! They made a good product (I think the early 90’s one is the best quality) but where COMPETE ASS’S!! As a four time and current owner, GOOD RIDDANCE!! I feel vindicated and avenged!!!

  19. Own 4 Oly’s. But I’m not one bit saddened or surprised to stumble upon this news! In fact, even tho I now have four voided warrants, the news warms cockles of my heart! I experienced the worst, rude and obnoxious “customer service” ever, dealing with them over the phone. And it was’nt just one guy! Bought my first Oly CAR15 at a gun show in 91. Had just got a Colt “green label”, HBAR, ( for those of you old or informed enough to even know what that is) earlier that year and was wanting a CAR. (Old school m4) Came across a dealer selling an Oly at that show. Was very impressed with the over all quality. Considered it better than the Colt. Years latter around 2011, picked up one “plinker” and two “SS16’s for my boys. (m4’s with stainless match grade bull barrel) It was only after that, I had the “pleasure”, of dealing with them over the phone. When later I wanted to buy OEM parts and accessories. Complete jackass’s! And the problem was systemic there! You where made to feel like they were doing you a “favor”, to answer the phone. What’s worse, is after being treated like crap, when I decided to call back and complain about my experience, their solution was to “flag” my name and number. So that any time in the future that I may call, I would be routed the very guy I called to report!!! How smart was that! How’s that for wiping their ass on their customers !?? In all fairness, there was one guy there, (don’t recall names) and I do mean ONE, guy that was OK. If you never dealt with the people in their “customer service” dept, you DONT KNOW! They made a good product (I think the early 90’s one is the best quality) but where COMPETE ASS’S!! As a four time and current owner, GOOD RIDDANCE!! I feel vindicated and avenged!!!

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