Gun Shows are Dead

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thelung187
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Gun Shows are Dead

Post by thelung187 » Wed May 26, 2010 7:58 pm

This past weekend, the Cocoa Gun Expo came to town. What was once a semi-thriving marketplace for firearm owners and enthusiasts has been bastardized and deformed into a slum of bad deals, overwhelming greed, piss-poor merchandise and apathetic salespeople who are too busy texting on their iPhones to give me the time of day. "Sales" included:

- $8/box .223 Brown Bear
- $1089 CMMG flat-top AR15s
- $450 S&W 5906 police trade-ins
- $135 DPMS stripped lowers

I walked away from the show empty-handed and jaded; while I can respect the desire for profitability and the merits of free enterprise, this amounted to little more than price gouging. I can't tell if it's people attempting to capitalize on a non-existent scarcity, people trying to liquidate their assets in order to break even from attempting to capitalize on the scarcity that existed before, or they just can't compete with the prices offered by what has evolved to be the dutch auction that is internet sales. To those store owners who have tried to stay competitive while not kicking us in the proverbial nuts, I salute you. To those that are trying to maximize their greed potential:

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Meat N' Taters » Wed May 26, 2010 8:09 pm

Same shit here in Houston, too.

Overpriced guns, and dealers trying to screw people. I go just because I like looking around at all the shiny toys. i've never bought a gun from a gun show before, and likely never will.

Jerky on the other hand...sometimes I go just to buy venison jerky.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by anotheroldfart » Wed May 26, 2010 8:20 pm

This is a conclusion I reached many years ago. But then I grew up in the '60s and remember REAL gunshows, acres of tables filled with firearms at affordable prices.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Stercutus » Wed May 26, 2010 8:30 pm

That is ok you should have been there 18 months ago at the peak of the hysteria. Going for the comedic relief was worth the price of admission if you did not mind getting mobbed. Still waiting on the promised ban and the secret UN treaty :lol:
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by 1776 » Wed May 26, 2010 8:35 pm

[quote="anotheroldfart"]This is a conclusion I reached many years ago. But then I grew up in the '60s and remember REAL gunshows, acres of tables filled with firearms at affordable prices.[/quote



Please grandpa,can you tell us more about the good ol' days? :mrgreen: :mrgreen: But seriously,I have talked to guys in their late 50's early 60's who have told me stories about going to gun shows on a payday,buying a new gun,and still having plenty of money left over untill next payday.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Jcan282 » Wed May 26, 2010 8:36 pm

You are so right. It feels as though I am bothering the sales man when I ask to see a weapon. As far as the Houston gun shows go, Jerky is tops. There are always 2 booths set up that sell the good stuff. I bring my own water because I refuse to pay $3 for 16oz of water at the George R Brown.

The one booth at the Houston Gun Shows that I will buy from is Bach-man Gun and Pawn. They seem to have the best prices and the lady who helps me fill out the information form has always been very nice. I bought my PX4 and S&W MOE M&P-15 from them, they seem to under sale all the others. ( I am in no way affiliated with the shop)
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by JGWERD » Wed May 26, 2010 8:48 pm

Lately it just seems to be a waste of an hour or so and $8 everytime I go. Sometimes I find some cheap ammo. Sometimes. I did not go the gunshow to pay $400 for a norinco Sks, sorry.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by donjulio » Wed May 26, 2010 8:54 pm

At almost $10 to get in, any good deals that you may or may not find are, well, less of a good deal. The gun shows that I went to as a kid with my dad were packed full of deals. The one that stands out the most were norinco sks's for $90 each..........He should have bought crates of them.........
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Paladin1 » Wed May 26, 2010 8:56 pm

I concur. The last couple of shows I've gone to have been a sad joke. I understand brick and mortar costs more than an internet site and a cheap warehouse/drop shipping, but the prices aren't even close.

I can only presume they are hoping to snag the people who really just don't know any better.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Badger24 » Wed May 26, 2010 9:01 pm

Total waste of time. I went to a show in Vermont last summer. Everything was way overpriced, and I paid like $5 to walk into dissapointment.
All the ammo was overpriced and enything else I wanted was not there, now I buy online. Save my gas money to go to work.
The gun shows in Ohio back in the day were so cool, what happend?

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by KS Trekker » Wed May 26, 2010 9:07 pm

I absolutely agree - I won't waste my time or money on gun shows anymore. I'm waiting in line to pay my admission fee and I can clearly make out the printing of a handgun on several individuals in front of me. There are huge ass signs on every flippin' door stating "NO CONCEALED CARRY". :roll:
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Vicarious_Lee » Wed May 26, 2010 9:11 pm

That's nothing compared to the prices during the Panic of '09. I bought an AMD 65 with 2 (illegal if ever inserted into the gun) magazines for $600 out the door and thought it was a great deal. It was at the time.

One thing I have noticed at the Houston shows is that pistols are still reasonably priced and plentiful. I got my Father in law a new Gen 3 Glock 17 with Tritiums for $499.00. Not too bad. I've found Kahr CW9s for $399.00. ARs have dropped to almost reasonable prices from Looney Tunes prices, but AKs are still high, and SKSs? Forget about it.

The problem I have with online auctions is that by the time you pay shipping and an FFL transfer fee, you're out maybe 50 bucks. More if there's tax. However, at the GRB Center gun shows, you're gonna pay 8 bucks to get in, 20 bucks to park, and pay tax on the merchandise. It all comes out about even, so I just go for fun.

It's a double-edged sword. Used to, gun shows were for gun enthusiasts, as well as total psycho fringe political nutjobs. They scared the regular folks away, so all you could get was good deals. Nowadays, it's SOOO much more mainstream and accepted, which is great, except for the fact that all the dealers have started to shift towards bilking people that are just looking for their first gun, making the whole enterprise feel about as honorable as a used car lot.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Dave_M » Wed May 26, 2010 9:12 pm

Paladin1 wrote:I concur. The last couple of shows I've gone to have been a sad joke.
But it's fun too people watch :mrgreen:

Actually, some of the ammunition prices haven't been terrible at local shows.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Paladin1 » Wed May 26, 2010 9:16 pm

DavePAL84 wrote:
Paladin1 wrote:I concur. The last couple of shows I've gone to have been a sad joke.
But it's fun too people watch :mrgreen:

Actually, some of the ammunition prices haven't been terrible at local shows.

True, I enjoy watching you tell those fuckers they shouldn't be trying to pass off clones of ACOG's as the real deal. :lol:
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Lodewijk » Wed May 26, 2010 9:19 pm

Gun shows are pretty useful for getting to fondle lots of stuff in one shot, I guess.

Other than that, I dunno.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by CitizenZ » Wed May 26, 2010 9:20 pm

It's a seller's market. With the value of the dollar falling, and the general populace getting more paranoid, I don't think prices will ever come back down. People aren't nessasaraly wrong to "panic" and get what they can, while they can. At any price. 10 years from now they make look like bargains and we'll be kicking ourselves we didn't buy more when it was available.

Personally, I can't imagine ever selling a gun.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Spamity Calamity » Wed May 26, 2010 9:33 pm

I dont know if they are that bad. Its an enjoyable way to spend an afternoon. Hell you spend more on a damn movie ticket than you do on the admission to a gun show. Another plus is that you get to actually handle the weapons not eye rape them via jpeg over the internet. This proved particularly useful to me when I went looking for a semi-automatic pistol for concealed carry. I went to the Saxet gun show right after Obama's election and the place was a mad house. There was a line stretching around the building and it was a sellers market. The dealers did not want to haggle because everybody was in a buying mood. I had spent many weeks looking at guns over the internet and had compiled a pretty hefty list of different brands and models I might be interested in. There was no way I would be able to look at that great a variety at any single gun store but sure enough, everything I had wanted to look at was available to handle and actually feel how it felt in my hand at the gun show. I looked over everything and some pistols that I thought looked great on the internet felt flimsier in my hand in real life. Or others were much dramatically heavier than I had anticipated. I mean I know that weights are ususally given in the specs but that information doesnt translate as well as holding the actual item in your hand. Or others just didnt feel good. After trying out different pistols I actually wound up walking out with a gun I had never considered, a Glock 30 SF. It wasnt even on my radar but I fell in love with it as soon as I picked it up. I paid a flat 500 dollars for it which was the same price as they go for on the internet and I didnt have to pay shipping or a 30 dollar FFL transfer fee. Was that a super-OMG-I-just-effing-screwed-that-guy gun bargain? No but it was a fair price and a great way to spend the day and now I have a CC pistol that I absolutely love and am absolutely confident that it is the best for me. No second guessing because I bought it blindly over the internet.

Now I admit there are some turbo douche dealers out there but fuck em. If they want to be dicks or they dont wanna haggle, thats cool. I just keep on moving because someone else will have something similar who will, no hurry no worry. As far as getting good deals go. I have always had the best luck going the last half of the last day of the gun show. By then, the dealers are thinking about their bottom line and if your item that you just absolutely cant live without is still there then the dealers are much more open to cutting a reasonable deal either because they need to shore up their profits for the weekend or they simply dont want to haul everything back.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Liff » Wed May 26, 2010 9:37 pm

There is a class 3 Small Arms Review show in Phoenix in December. That is a good one to go to to just look. As far as buy, I do not think gun shows are a viable option any more.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by gelgoog » Wed May 26, 2010 9:49 pm

all the good stuff that used to be at gunshows went to online auctions like gunbroker. Why buy a table and deal with all the jerks when you can get top bill selling online and have an audience that spans the entire nation.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Gyrfalcon » Wed May 26, 2010 9:54 pm

Oh, the BS that flows at gun shows. My favorite, that I've heard more than once, "The gubbmint banned them SKS stripper clips. Better get 'em while you can. Only $2 each."

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Kommander » Wed May 26, 2010 9:57 pm

Buying new stuff and normal military surplus stuff at gunshows is a waste. However I still do find that they have good deals IF you know what to look for. For example I picked up both a Lithgow Enfield, a S&W target revolver, and a crapload of glowsticks for a good price at gun shows. I also got a line on some reasonably priced 38 S&W ammo at one. However if you go in looking for a good deal on an AR/AK/ anything modern your going to be sorely disappointed. I recall that at one gun show where I was looking for Uzi mags. I knew that Cheaper than dirt and 3 in a pouch with a sling for $40. The cheapest I saw em at the show 3 in a pouch with no sling for $70. I think that the internet has really killed the gun show. It's allot cheaper to sell a warehouse full of stuff than it is to try and sell smaller quantities at a gun show.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by raptor » Wed May 26, 2010 10:00 pm

The local gun shows have had some decent ammo prices but a pathetic selection of firearms. There has been a lot more non-firearm and ammo booths and even politicians setting up booths now.

Sorry to the hear the Houston Gun Show is disappointing. I used to make pilgrimage to the show for the selection and sales.

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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Caenus » Wed May 26, 2010 10:29 pm

The last gun show I went to had a guy selling KelTec SU16's for $800 (late '08) and a PLR16 with the compact forend and one 30 rnd mag for $990. I drifted by an hour later and someone actually bought it.

TX Trinity did buy her first pistol, a Taurus 24/7 9mm stainless NIB for $270. That was a great deal.
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Re: Gun Shows are Dead

Post by Dave_M » Wed May 26, 2010 10:31 pm

raptor wrote:The local gun shows have had some decent ammo prices but a pathetic selection of firearms. There has been a lot more non-firearm and ammo booths and even politicians setting up booths now.

Sorry to the hear the Houston Gun Show is disappointing. I used to make pilgrimage to the show for the selection and sales.
Heck, we even have Scientologists setting up at our local shows asking people if they want to take a stress test. No lie.
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