Gun Shop Problems

Gun Shop Problems

This is a discussion on Gun Shop Problems within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Mods feel free to move this if it is better placed (please PM if done). I am pretty upset about the treatment that I received ...

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Thread: Gun Shop Problems

  1. #1
    me [OP]
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    Oct 2006
    Shanandoah Valley VA

    Gun Shop Problems

    Mods feel free to move this if it is better placed (please PM if done).

    I am pretty upset about the treatment that I received at a gun shop today (and recently) and just want to see what others think.

    This afternoon I went into the gun shop located near the State Gamelands where I shoot. I wanted to pick up some targets and some sight paint to use on 2 of my guns. I realize this is not a large purchase but they never gave me time to even walk through the door before being very disrespectful. As I came in the door an older man who worked there fired off sharply "Can I help you?" I kindly said "I'm just looking to pick up some targets and stuff." He proceeded to come out from behind that side of the counter to follow me over to the other side of the counter where the targets are located. The whole time he is looking over my shoulder at ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING I am doing. I asked where the sight paint was and he pointed me to replacement fiber optic tubes with a snappy voice. Not seeing them I payed for my 4 targets and left.

    I felt like this guy expected me to be a criminal. The first time I went to this shop was with my family and I bought my first gun there with great service. I was pissed that the last 2 times I went to buy a gun there I got disrespect about the guns I wanted to buy when I asked about if they could get them (both were no).

    I feel as though I got serious disrespect from their staff because I am younger (22). I did call to speak with the manager and he is not there but will be tomorrow morning. I plan to tell him about the disrespect I have gotten at his shop over the last 6 months and will no longer be shopping there. I have found a new very small gun shop in the area which I plan to go to tomorrow and check out. I have bought my last 2 guns at big box stores because this shop could not get them and I have had excellent at my near by Big Box Store, including when they no I am just doing my homework and thinking about down the line.

    I am done with this store but am trying to figure out why I keep getting this disrespect from this shop. I am wondering if I am getting this disrespect because of my age. Have any others experienced this.

    I will tell the guy working the counter the truth when I walk in. If I am just looking I will tell them that or I will tell them exactly what I want when I walk in and will start the doing the papers with in 5 minutes when I plan on buying. But I am not cheap, I have bought all three guns I own in the last 9 months, spending over $1,200 in guns and shooting 250 rounds every 2 weeks and have spent over $200 on holsters for my carry guns.

    Thanks for listening to my rant.

    "The world is filled with violence. Because criminals carry guns, we decent law-abiding citizens should also have guns. Otherwise they will win and the decent people will lose."

    -James Earl Jones

  2. #2
    VIP Member Array sass20485's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Central FL
    Their loss, and yes you were probably treated in this shoddy fashion because of your age. I had the same problem many years trying to buy '70 Mustang, when in high school. Got snubbed and the brush off. Their loss, because the first salesman to take me seriously, sold me the car. Judging a book by the cover is wrong thing to do with a customer.

    My wife was in a tee shirt & jeans on her way back home from soccer practice, when she stopped in the fine china dept at an upscale department store years ago. She got the cold shoulder and brush off by the sales people. I assume they figured she could not possibly afford to buy anything and was wasting their time. She left , but soon returned with the store mgr and a saleslady from the women's wear dept, with whom she had done quite a bit of shopping in the past. She then proceeded to make a $4000 purchase, for which the saleslady from the women's wear dept got the sale commission, not the jerks in the china dept, who had snubbed her earlier.

    So I would contact the store mgr & let him know how much business you've given his store in the past and why you won't be giving them anymore of your business.

  3. #3
    JD is offline
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    Jun 2006
    Central Iowa
    I'm 27 and I still get it in shops that I am new to, I'm a notorious researcher / shopper and will hit several shops writing down makes / models and prices, I've been asked a couple of times "Who you shoppin' for?" Indicating that they think I'm eye balling a straw purchase.

    The best thing to do if you really need to do business in that shop is take some time and BS with the staff, ask for their opinions and be sociable. Once they know your a good guy, your set.

    There have been a few shops that I will no longer frequent, IE. one shop I went in to while I was shopping for my Sig, the owner proceeded with his 'tude of "Why do you want a Sig, unless YOU get training all those little buttons will confuse you...

    Yeah I turned off the charm and set him straight pretty quick on that.

    It's funny that once you let them know what you know, their attitudes change pretty fast. He got much more friendly when I reminded him he didn't try to push me out of a sale the last time I was in and bought the Combat Commander I had, as soon as he knew I was a return customer he lightened up, too bad soon after I told him I wouldn't be back, since he was intent on telling me I didn't know and preaching on how I should buy a Glock instead of a Sig

    He lost $850 that day and I ended up finding a better deal elsewhere.

    As a younger guy I know what you mean.

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  5. #4
    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    Yes.. I have observed some sales people, not gun stores in particular, projecting an attitude to younger customers that they are a waste of time. It's rude but maybe understandable. All I can tell you is enjoy it while it lasts. Youth isn't a permanent condition.

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    I moved this to General i think you will get more posts here .. and yes you were treated poorly and calling the manager to say i will shop elsewhere is excalty what i would do and have done

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array gddyup's Avatar
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    Jan 2006
    Derry, NH
    The only way to speak their language sometimes is to speak with YOUR money. Take it elsewhere! There's no reason to stand for a buisness that you feel does not take you seriously or does not respect you as a customer, regardless of your age.

    I would definately try and speak with the manager and/or owner and tell him exacetly what happened, why you feel the way you do, and that you will unfortunately be taking your buisness elsewhere. After that, I would never step foot in that buisness again even if it was next door.
    "You've never lived until you've almost died. For those who fight for it, life has a flavor the protected will never know" - T.R.

    <----My LT was unhappy that I did not have my PASS-Tag at that fire. But I found the body so he said he would overlook it. :)

  8. #7
    Senior Member Array A1C Lickey's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
    Hate to say it, but it was probably because of your age. At 26 I still get it sometimes. (I've been told I look younger. Personally I'm not sure how true that is, but that is besides the point.) Your best bet is just to find a place that won't give you problems and refer everyone you know to those stores.
    TSgt. Lickey

    It takes a college degree to break'em;
    and a high school education to fix'em!

  9. #8
    Member Array Randal16-1's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
    American Canyon, Ca
    Not knowing you, it could be several things. It could be the way you dress or it could be they way you act. The other thing is the employees could be just jerks.

    I would still follow up with calling the owner of the shop. If his employees are be rude to the customers that's a loss of money for the shop. Owners don't like losing money

    I work part time at a gun shop and here are the things that will get me to treat people a little different.

    Come in with your pants hanging off you backside.

    Looking and acting like a gangbanger.

    Coming in and being rude.

    Asking really stupid question: i.e. "What's the cheapest gun I can buy and is it reliable".

    My response: "Do you want cheap or do you want reliable, You can't have them both".

    Again, if none of the above apply to you then the store clerk is just a jerk.


  10. #9
    VIP Member (Retired Staff) Array P95Carry's Avatar
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    It's sad when a young guy goes in, and is polite, only to get the cold shoulder.

    It is age related I am sure - sometimes because of an assumption that all younger folks are trouble and maybe too because an assumption is also made that they can't possibly be in a position to spend much.

    Young guys are tomorrow's customers and if they are polite they should have the favor returned. Shops often forget the ''word of mouth'' aspect - and this can be highly positive in their favor but equally, negative and so leading to lost business. I wish they'd consider that.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!." - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

  11. #10
    Member Array Hagphish's Avatar
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    You are not the only one. Unfortunately I have only two people in my metro area that I trust at two different gun shops. Most others shrug me off as being a punk kid with no money to spend. It is their loss.

    I learned this from selling cameras for four years:
    Always assume EVERY customer has a pocket full of money and treat them with respect.

    P95- You are 100&#37; correct. My father relies on me to give him feedback on many different things including gun shops. I have numerous friends that ask my opinion about many firearm related topics.
    I'm married to my Kahr.

  12. #11
    Lead Moderator
    Array rocky's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    Depending on what you wear and your age can affect how others see you. Nothing wrong with dressing any way you chose, but it does affect other perceptions.
    Sounds like the sales man is in the wrong line of work. I would speak to a manager for sure, but also consider taking your business elsewhere.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson

    Nemo Me Impune Lacesset

  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Black Knight's Avatar
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    Charlottesville, VA
    Find out who the owner is. Give the owner a call as well. The employee and the manager work for the owner, they get paid if you buy or not. The owner for the most part gets paid only when you do buy. Your money walking out the door is money that won't be going into his pocket. If it is a chain store contact their President or CEO or other appropriate corporate official. They are usually more responsive to customers than the individual store manager.

  14. #13
    Member Array SubMOA's Avatar
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    South Carolina
    Like all of you here, I spend a lot of time in the local gun shops (I do the gunsmithing for one), and I've noticed that when a very young guy comes in, the employees or owners tend to play him down.

    I've asked them why before, and one said: "These young punks come in and handle every single gun I've got, waste 30 minutes of my time, never buy anything and then I've got to clean up after them."

    My response was: "I was one of those punks a few years ago, and you were one of them about a hundred"

    The fact is this, most of the young guys that come into the shop are making their wish lists. Often they don't have a lot of money to spend, so they are looking at all of the options and weighing them in their minds. I don't think this is a waste of time. I think it's smart!

    Good luck with it. I'd definitely give the owner a piece of my mind.
    NRA Certified Instructor

    Primary carry guns: Glock 23, SA Loaded Custom LW Micro .45, S&W Model 10

    If those don't work: BM/DPMS CAR-15 custom, Rem. 11-87 3.5-inch

  15. #14
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    I just tell the clerk I'll let them know when I find something I can't live without. They get the message.

  16. #15
    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Think of it as a perk for being you....enjoy it while it lasts!
    "...bad decisions that turn out well often make heroes."

    Gary D. Mitchell, A Sniper's Journey: The Truth About the Man and the Rifle, P. 103, NAL Caliber books, 2006, 1st Ed.

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