FireClean Sues Over VuurwapenBlog Articles

Recently I discovered that myself and Everett Baker were being sued by FireClean for publishing the results of scientific testing of their product along with, among other things, canola oil. 

I have set up a GoFundMe page for a legal defense fund here.

A major thrust of their suit is that I claimed or implied their product was Crisco. If you will recall from the first article, I clearly stated “I did not – and still do not – believe that FireClean is Crisco…”

When TFB posted an article titled in part “FireClean is Crisco,” I urged the author to change his title and commented publicly on the article that, again, I did not think FireClean was Crisco.

There are obviously issues with their other claims in the complaint, but that is one I felt needed to be addressed immediately.

Furthermore, the series of articles published here contained tests from three different laboratories, and I published every bit of available data and every relevant quote from those who reviewed the data. FireClean’s legal complaint contains a redacted (missing the full spectra) NMR test from a single laboratory.

More to come.

71 thoughts on “FireClean Sues Over VuurwapenBlog Articles”

  1. Good luck to you in the lawsuit. Sad this is what things come to these days. You have many readers who will vouch for you not ever calling fireclean Cisco. It may not be a bad thing that this is their main complaint, as there seems to be an overwhelming amount of evidence to the contrary right on your site from your own posts!

  2. You need to immediately file a countersuit. The facts support your case, and that will come out in court. You have our support, and we will never buy another Fireclean product again; I actually never have.

    1. Counter sue? For what? You can’t countersue someone just because he/she is suing you. You can sue for malicious prosecution IF you win AND IF you can demonstrate that the original action was filed in bad faith and with malice. (Good luck with that. In most cases, it is good money chasing bad.)

  3. This is ridiculous. But it also looks like they said you knew this would hurt them. However I believe that they will have to disclose their ingridents to prove that it isn’t a canola oil or similar.

    1. you need to get an attorney, counter sue for anti slapp claims and shut the fuck up on the internet about this issue.

      1. You need to listen to what Chris said. Stop talking about this on the net, shipmate. Everything single thing you say, do, or infer is subject to speculation. Contact @popehat (reddit or twitter is good) and find cover. They have the uphill battle here – you need to not help them get to the top. V/R, Corpsman Up.

    2. It is legal to publish information about someone that you know will hurt them as long as it is true.
      This is not the same as advocating harm.

  4. I hope you win and they have to pay your legal costs. They seem to have very questionable ethics.

    1. Keep looking. All that needs to be done is order Fireclean to disclose what “plant, seed, scrub”(their description…) is the actual ingredient in their product.

      If canola oil(…and that is likely) is used, case dismissed.

  5. Well, it’s unwelcome, if not entirely unexpected news.

    It’s pretty interesting to see how people are starting to take sides all over again over this. I felt like you did a commendable job and worded things fairly, with sufficient disclaimers (although clearly FireClean didn’t agree). I certainly came away with the impression that your goal from the outset was to determine the truth of the rumor, and little else. Whether FireClean turned out to be Crisco or something completely different, either result would have been equally interesting and worthy of posting in pursuit of the truth.

    I tend to feel like the actions taken by FireClean after the release of your data was just as damaging, if not more so, and probably cost them their sales more than anything else. Before your results, I might have tried the stuff out of mild curiosity. But after seeing how they reacted, it definitely convinced me not to purchase their product on principle.

    I’ll put some money on the campaign after my paycheck goes through. Best of luck.

  6. When this happens you can win the case then sue them for ALL of your legal fees and related administrative costs.

    The Judge ordered Chicago to pay for all the NRA s costs in that law suit Chicago lost.

  7. You should contact SSD to give your side of the story. Either Eric or a moderator there is slamming you and your testing. Are they suing you for assault? SSD is continuously commenting that they are not.

  8. Speaking truth to power comes with risk, which is precisely what makes it so admirable. Good luck, Andrew, and I hope my C-note is of some help. If I practiced civil law I’d offer a hand on the case. –Attorney Andrew, Branca, @LawselfDefense

  9. You need to contact popehat.com as soon as possible.

    If you are not aware of Popehat, they deal with this kind of issue (asshats who sue people over online content) all the time, and sometimes they even steer legal assistance to the defendants.

  10. This paragraph in the plaintiff’s complaint is interesting:

    “83. The ammunition used for the FIREClean® firing was not materially different from the ammunition used for the CLP and no-lubricant demonstrations.”

    I read the phrase “was not MATERIALLY different” (emphasis added) as meaning that in fact the ammunition used for the different tests WAS different. WHY would they be different if one was looking to do an objective, unbiased comparison? Huh. Inquiring minds, etc.

    –Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

    1. What? How exactly would the ammo be different then? They’re saying it’s NOT materially different. I think you’re probably reading too much into that.

      1. Because the is no “material” difference between Winchester White Box 9mm and Lapua Match 9mm, in legalese. Both have a bress case, a primer, NitroCellulose propellent and a copper-jacketed lead projectile. Both are ‘legally” made of the same material. Which powder burns cleaner? Immaterial to the legal argument.

  11. So far reading FireClean’s complaint it appears that their primary contention is that Andrew lied by claiming FireClean is a vegetable oil. To the contrary, they say, it’s a combination of at least THREE vegetable oils. Oofah. –Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

    1. Reminds me of when the sugar producers tried to sue Splenda, claiming it was not made from sugar, it was made from the chemicals hydrogen and carbon. Of course, sugar is also made from the chemicals hydrogen and carbon!

  12. after seeing your IR tests, i felt compelled to actually buy a bottle for myself to see what the noise was over.
    I don’t doubt they have a good product, but their actions demonstrate that while their product may endure high temperature, the CEO’s certainly cannot.

    This was really really stupid on their part for multiple reasons. #1 you’re the perfect guy to fight this, level headed, methodical and logical
    #2 you have facts, dialogs with the company showing their reluctance to cooperate with any testing or confirming their claims short of “nuh uh, larry vickers says so. ”
    #3 you actually winning this case, rings the fireclean death bell forever.

    in closing, sorry you got wrapped up in this fiasco man. And while you’re the best imaginable candidate to fight this fight, be very careful. these guys are playing their very last hand and would pull out every stop in the world before losing to you

  13. I just threw $15 Andrew’s way. I suspect fireclean is just as good or bad as any other product and don’t feel too strongly about it. Really I don’t think anyone should get to wrapped up about it. I’m more familiar with criminal law, but this kind of lawsuit is really ridiculous and has no merit and makes me upset as an attorney and as a consumer. They have to prove that he knowingly..with or with reckless disregard for the truth published offensive material. There’s no way they can meet both of these burdens, their only hope is to harass Andrew legally into making some apology statement. I encourage others to throw a little cash Andrew’s way.

  14. Andrew, I do recommend that you obtain representation soonest. I also recommend that you contact Ken White at Popehat.com to see if he can help you find assistance in defending.

    This complaint has several defects that good counsel can assist you with.

    Wish I was licensed in Virginia. 😉

  15. Look on the bright side:
    If I had posted that, no one would have cared.
    Andrew, you are frickin’ famous.

  16. I expect this to be settled out of court, but you guys really blew it big time. A hard lesson to learn that simply because you have a blog site and try to position yourself as some kind of “expert” does not give you any right at all to go trashing a business.

    I’ve read through the lawsuit and paid particularly close attention to the evidence they provide for their various claims against you.

    You totally blew it, dude and should have quit attacking Fireclean when you had the chance.

      1. No, no, no! He read the lawsuit and ‘paid particularly close attention’ to the evidence and has determined that you ‘blew it’. End of story, it’s all over for you.

  17. I have contributed a bit as I have admired your thorough and fair investigation of FireClean and I detest legal bullying. Good luck to you.

  18. In any event, FireClean doesn’t even work that well.
    Knowing that, I’d hazard to guess the company is trying to pin their losses on a person or entity, rather than developing a better product.

  19. Andrew,

    Fuck this go fund me thing. Ill dontate like 20 bucks because i love your blog. But id pay a ton more for a somewhat clever shirt. Shit maybe rerelease the last one, burning bridges sure is pertinent now eh?

  20. In case anyone else didn’t notice, the reaction of The Firearm Blog staff to news of this seemingly frivolous lawsuit is mighty fishy.

    It doesn’t take a sophisticated legal mind to infer there was some sort of agreement by TFB to avoid co-defendant status in exchange for carrying water for the plaintiffs by spinning and twisting facts enough to convince TFB readers that the legal action by FireClean against actually has any merit.

    Never seen anything like it, TFB’s Phil W and Nathan S were unable to restrain themselves from becoming defensive by repeatedly responding to comments from a majority of their readers who saw right through what The Firearm Blog was trying to do. Once Phil and Nathan realized that almost none of their readers were biting on the attempts to spin FireClean as the victim and that no one was buying into the line of bull$#it that it’s somehow libelous to out a wonder substance retailing for $7.50 an ounce as common 2¢ an ounce canola oil, they shut down the comments.

    Disappointing to know TFB’s crew is that chicken$#it and gutless.

    1. Yep, I read through those TFB writers’ comments and unsubscribed right after. It’s a pity because I do like some of their other writers but if we’re going to constantly complain about 2nd amendment rights, it’s pretty hypocritical to say the 1st amendment is optional.

  21. I never even heard of your blog until I read about this on one of the gun forums. I’ve never used Fireclean and after this, I never will.

    I sent a little. Not much, but hopefully it helps.

  22. I have never given money for an online solicitation. Ever. But I am going to donate to your legal defense fund. What FireClean is doing is despicable, and provides further proof of its nefarious business practices (or relabeling ordinary vegetable oils and selling them as magic gun lube).

  23. Andrew;
    Call Ken White over at Popehat. This seems like a free speech/SLAPP suit to me. He may be able to get you quality legal assistance for free.
    Rick

  24. It is my opinion that by filing lawsuits, FireClean is bringing more attention to the claims about their products than if they had ignored them. I will find it interesting to see how this plays out for them.

  25. By claiming that you were malicious in your reporting and research, and that you instituted a “smear campaign” against them, they have opened themselves up for you to sue them for defamation of character, slander, and libel. I would urge you to do so for your own sake.

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