If you're anything like me, going back will just extend your sorrow....
This is a discussion on Please Tell me about Gunshows within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; If you're anything like me, going back will just extend your sorrow.......
If you're anything like me, going back will just extend your sorrow....
Arkansas Concealed Carry Instructor #12-751
If guns kill people, then:
Pincels miss spel werds;
Cars make people drive drunk;
And spoons made Rosie O'Donnel fat.
Sometimes you can find a good deal, but for the most part you will find the same prices as you would in a shop or slightly higher. They are still a great place to people watch, meet others with the same interests and drool like a fat kid outside the window of a donut shop.
KAHR CW45, RIA 1911 Officer, S&W Sigma 9MM, Savage 1907 .32cal(BUG)
1. Generally what are they like?
The larger ones are crowded, very crowded. Especially in the middle of the day. I like to get there early myself.
2. Are they worth going to?
You can see some interesting and rare stuff there. Pick up cheap cleaning supplies, and other consumables, all kinds of pars for just about anything, and some types of ammo are dirt cheap.
3. What kind of stuff do you buy there?
Pvri Partizan 7.62X54R brass casing soft point non corrosive ammo for 13.50 for 20, since my local indoor range wont allow anything else, and Winchester is almost 30 a box. occaisionally I find good buys on other types of ammo, but its rare. Since ammo prices and availability have been better lately, gun show prices have no changed. People still sell 9MM blazer brass for 20+ a box, when I can buy it locally for 10.99.
I will note here, that more often then not, gunshow prices are more expensive then my local shops, or online pricing.
4. Should I pay with cash, or what?
Cash seems to be preferred. Most private sellers only take cash, such s someone who rented a booth to sell off his/her private collection of stuff. Larger sellers will have a CC machine on hand, sometimes.
5. Is there the 10 day CA wait period for firearms?
NOt that ive seen.
6. If I buy ammo in a name brand box, is that what I'll get?
Brand name ammo, ussually. Examine the box and ammo. If they pitch a fit seeing you do it, dont buy it.
7. Can you tell me some sellers that are OK?
No, but I can tell you to be observant, listen not only to what they are saying to you and other people, but how they say it.
8. Can you tell me some sellers to avoid?
Like anything else. avoid the ones telling you what you want to hear when you ask questions. be aware that lots of sellers hand out outdated or bad advice, or hearsay info. I see a lot of old cranky guys at gunshow booths, if you show the slightest inkling that you may disagree with some time homered crap they dole out, they get all cranky on you. I just walk away from these guys.
9. Can I/Should I CCW there?
If its allowed, I would, but ive never been to one that allows it.
From my personal experience, I'd say they are overrated. I get better prices buying at a gunshop. You also have some that don't exercise basic gun safety. And I sure am not disarming myself in order to go there. However, I did ran into Carlos Hathcock, a renowned Marine sniper, who was in a wheelchair at that time, promoting and signing his books, at one of the gun shows I attended many years back around 1994 or 1995 at the now defunct FX flea market building in VA Beach. I wasn't CCing then so going unarmed was not an issue then. I did carried only my SOG tactical folder at that time though.
Thnx...didn't think of that
Guns don't kill people, People kill people!
I won't ***** or holler, because I went back today [Sunday] and only spent about twenty more dollars, on chamber brushes and cleaning jags. But, this one guy always has this one shiny stainless-steel...or nickle-plated maybe...gun on display inside one of his glass-topped cases: A $595 .380 Browning pistol with pretty wooden grips. I mean, I already have a Bersa and a Ruger LCP, but they don't look [or probably shoot] as good as this Browning no doubt does. Such a good-looking gun has to shoot better. Bill Goodman's will be at Hara Arena, next weekend, my gun-loving friends. Oh, did I mention the fun of looking at those cheap surplus commie guns? Nice at the gunshow prices and you can't just have one!
Well, I'm guess I'm an official gunshow goer now!
It was quite interesting, reminded me of a large garage sale with all the stuff laid out on tables - lots of tables. I'd say about 20% old stuff - military WWII collector stuff; 30% survivalist type weapons and stuff; 20% ammo; 20% holsters and accessories; 10% other - gun safes (huge safes), paper magazines & books. Oh yeah, can't forget the 2 Glocks. I actually saw one of those kiddie guns with the plastic stock that looks like for a 4 year old - cute little thing.
I bought some stuff I didn't know I needed and ammo that I paid too much for. But it was kinda fun and a lot of fine looking women walking around - with their 40 kids in tow. Well actually lots of women with kids in tow and 1 good looking woman with a really nice smile behind an ammo table. Oh to be 45 years younger!
There were no swat teams, Jack Webb types, or Mall Nijas walking around. Everybody was friendly and polite, even when a couple guys who could possibly be profiled bumped into me they apologized. I saw them coming and they were looking at the table on the other side of the isle, but I had nowhere to go. Nice guys all (well maybe except these 2 boys about 9 years old that ran all over the place and were digging through the bins of stuff. Like ta give them a healthy shot of caster oil!).
They have them every 3 or 4 months, so I'll think about going in about a year.
PS: Thanks for your help with this!
I love a good gun show. The bigger they are the better. Whether I'm working as a vendor or just there to see what there is to see, they are great fun. You get to see products you never knew existed, and the competition means good prices. You have dozens of gun stores under one roof, so to price shop just requires walking a few paces.
You also get to meet a lot of really nice people, and a few toads and turkeys also. Admission is usually about the price of a movie ticket, but the show lasts a lot longer.
"If we loose Freedom here, there's no place to escape to. This is the Last Place on Earth!" Ronald Reagan
The weirdest thing I've seen at a gun show was about 2 weeks after the 9/11 attacks. There were two guys in turbans walking around. They were Sikhs, but they were getting a lot of hard looks. I guess a lot of people thought they were Muslims
2. Yes. The best prices I've seen are at gun shows. There's more competition at them than gun shops. There's so few gun shops around, and the owners know that. At gun shows, there's competition 10 feet away, so they have to stay competitive.
3. You can buy guns, accessories, and other related stuff. Lights and knives and stuff as well.
4. Most booths give 3% or so discount if you pay in cash. Reason is that credit card companies charge a % fee, so if you pay in cash, they don't pay that fee, and they pass the savings to you.
5. Sorry, I'm in Texas.
6. Yes. If you have doubts, pop it open and check it out. Unless something seems out of place, you'll be ok.
9. The ones I go to forbid it. So, no.
Go with a list of things you might want to buy. Write down the best prices you can find elsewhere. Don't go in uninformed or you'll open yourself up for getting ripped off. Also, go around to ALL the booths. Take a small notepad, and note what each person is asking for the gun you want. You can easily save $20 by doing it.
If you have a cell phone with internet access, use it! Verify things online before buying.
Typical and traditional, courteous, friendly and polite gun-show etiquette and behavior is an example of the great late Robert A. Heinlien's motto: "An armed society is a polite society."
and check out the Showmasters link on the right side of the page
I had a wierd.... not really wierd, just not expected I guess. One of our local news anchors saw me looking for a PM9. He asked me if I wanted to buy his. It was kinda strange looking up to see him...lol, I said "hey Bill". My wife just stared and asked if that was who she thought it was, lol. I declined because his Kahr was pretty scratched up....looked like it had been run over with a car.
Socialism: A great Idea...'til you run out of other people's money. Margaret Thatcher
"A man without a gun is a subject, a man with a gun is a citizen."