New retail store. what rifles to stock?


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timberwolf1164@sbcglobal.net
September 8, 2008, 06:19 PM
In the process of stocking a new store from the ground up. Getting a handle on pistols but I admit I am not as famiiar with rifles. There is a Walmart and a Dicks nearby, which I relalize I can't compete with. Here is my list so far, please give me your ideas and thoughts.
Thanks Carl
STROGER R P350PUMP 12
31045 OVER/UNDER 12
3145 SIDE/SIDE 12
31400 COACH 12
3157 PISTOL GRIP 12
SAVAGE R 64FSS 22LR,S,L
64FB 22LR,S,L
64G WOOD 22LR,S,L
CUB YOUTH 22LR,S,L
93R17F 17HMR
RUGER R MINI 14 223 REM
R 10/22 39743 B 22LR
R 10/22 SS 22LR

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kcmarine
September 8, 2008, 06:32 PM
Neither the Wal-Mart nor the Dick's will have AR-15 or AR-10 rifles. They're hot sellers too, and you can stock uppers and other items which people will need for them. They also have tons of accessories you can get for them, meaning that you will have customers coming back (provided that you give good service and keep your prices fair).

WASR's and Saigas are also good to sell.

EDIT:

Some other ideas would be military surplus rifles... again, Wal-Mart and Dick's don't carry them. They're cheap, and people like to collect them. Most examples nowadays are from the former Soviet Union. Mosin- Nagants and SKS rifles come to mind.

jerkface11
September 8, 2008, 06:48 PM
AR's, Saigas, Savage and Stevens rifles.

TexasRifleman
September 8, 2008, 06:54 PM
ARs are hot, no question.

I'd be afraid to go down the "C&R" path simply because of the returns. I'd bet guys that sell that in a retail storefront see more unhappiness once folks get them home than a brand new gun, then come in the next day wanting a refund. That's just my gut feeling though. And frankly how much margin is there in a Mosin?

Marlin lever actions possibly? Marlins in general in fact.
CZ's possibly. There's another reasonably priced rifle that Wal Mart doesnt carry that I know of.

Depending on the audience you might specialize in the higher end stuff, with more margin; Brownings, Berettas, FNs... stuff that's more unusual if you have the market for it.

And of course keep the catalogs from your wholesalers out front where they are easy to get at, and make sure your customers know YOU will order anything they want, also unlike Wal Mart.

I think a willingness to do simple transfers and order things for customers will be how you compete with the big guys.

Going into a gun store and asking to order something funky then being told no is the main reason I totally stop doing business with a place.

Hoppy590
September 8, 2008, 06:56 PM
Saiga's ( if you can get them)
AR's both complete rifles, and components
any AK pattern you can get
almost any Autoloader you can get (FAL, M1A, Ruger Mini's, CETME/G3's, SU-16's etc)

Vaarok
September 8, 2008, 07:53 PM
As much evil black plastic as possible. Guys who buy a hunting rifle are one-off customers, mostly. Guys who buy EBRs seldom stop with just one.

Hoppy590
September 8, 2008, 08:24 PM
Guys who buy EBRs seldom stop with just one.

i also think the market for EBR accessory's is a little richer than hunting gear. many hunters buy gun stuff untill they find what works best for them then stop.

where as theres always the latest and greatest AR Upper, new mags, cool stocks etc.

also building EBR rifles is a good hobby. and a shop can get alot of business as long as they keep thier prices competitive

maybe carry some of the good, non name brand companys. the first that comes to mind is Essential Arms. they make AR lowers, and kits at cheap prices with good quality
http://www.essentialarms.com/

Auburn1992
September 8, 2008, 08:30 PM
WASR 10
AR15 (and many variants)
AR10
Savage 111 + 110 + 10 + 11
Remington 700's
Remington XR-100
Remington 870's
Stevens Rifles
Marlin 60
Marlin 336
Mini 14's
Mini 30's
FN SPR
Ruger M77 Mkii's
Walther G22

Also in your into MilSurps:
K98
Mosin Nagant
Sks
etc.

Just start browsing some gun websites.

Shade00
September 8, 2008, 08:43 PM
+1 to the Saigas - I never see them locally. I'd also love to see Marlin 39As in a shop, and a nice variety of AKs - specifically stuff in 5.45x39 or .22LR.

420Stainless
September 8, 2008, 08:58 PM
(Note: I'm not in sales, just a customer who hangs out too much in gun stores) Don't know if its regional or not, but around here it seems like someone's always at the gun counter inquiring about inexpensive youth rifles for deer hunting. Handi-rifles and Remington youth models in .243 seem to be a recurring requests.

The King of Pants
September 8, 2008, 09:11 PM
I've heard baaad things lately about the availability of AR uppers and complete rifles from the distributors. My understanding is that DPMS is something like 30K+ rifles behind on their orders. Places have rifles but they're from old orders.

RancidSumo
September 8, 2008, 09:23 PM
CZ rifles of all kinds. I ordered one from the local store a couple months ago and they got two more with the order. Both were gone within the month. (these were 22LR models, one was the ultra lux, the other regular lux) I would also agree to stock a lot of EBRs and youth hunting rifles.

Hoppy590
September 8, 2008, 09:26 PM
My understanding is that DPMS is something like 30K+ rifles behind on their orders. Places have rifles but they're from old orders.
there are hundreds of AR makers. and while DPMS situation may be a signal of the market. theres plenty of options who are shipping here and now

H2O MAN
September 8, 2008, 09:34 PM
kcmarine Neither the Wal-Mart nor the Dick's will have AR-15 or AR-10 rifles.
They're hot sellers too, and you can stock uppers and other items which people will need for them.

+1


You can't compete with big box stores prices, but why try to compete at all?


Stock and sell everything that your big box competition does not offer.
You will be the "GO2" shop for weapons that are otherwise unavailable in your area.

pfc.pennington
September 8, 2008, 09:42 PM
420stainless Quote "it seems like someone's always at the gun counter inquiring about inexpensive youth rifles for deer hunting. Handi-rifles and Remington youth models in .243 seem to be a recurring requests." Quote

+1 to 420stainless
When i was back home and hanging out in the gunstores, that was a big request, But no one ever seem to have them on the shelf.

lamazza
September 8, 2008, 10:14 PM
I would like to see more gun stores with battle rifles of all kinds. There is nothing more boring than a large gun store with racks and racks of bolt guns and shotguns...yawn

snead888
September 8, 2008, 10:29 PM
definitely old WWII and surplus rifles like the mosin, M1, SKS, AK's, Springfield, Enfield, etc. also you could go to the nearby ranges and ask the people who will be your customers what they want. or hangout at Wal-mart and Dicks and badger the people there. my $0.02

Vaarok
September 8, 2008, 11:42 PM
+2 on youth rifles. Carbines, even. My local gunshops pay a premium for sporting rifles the previous owners shortened the stocks on, simply because of the "take mah boy out huntin'" crowd constantly wanting a deer rifle for their kid.

22-rimfire
September 9, 2008, 12:10 AM
Walmart carries cheap stuff; essentially basic models mostly. Dicks has a broader selection, but still does not focus on the better quality stuff.

Definitely AR's, CZ's, Remington rifles including 22's, Browning, Anschutz and Savage. I would stock a few 375's also. Few do. A layaway plan would be nice as well, but I'm sure that is expensive for the owners.

CRITGIT
September 9, 2008, 12:33 AM
You've got flexibility the boxers don't have. CZ's are a winner!
BTW, Good Luck!:)

CRITGIT

jackdanson
September 9, 2008, 12:44 AM
+1 on cz's, ARs, saigas. You can make good money off used too.

Knowledgeable/nice staff is a big one that you can have over the other guys.

rfurtkamp
September 9, 2008, 12:58 AM
Don't know if its regional or not, but around here it seems like someone's always at the gun counter inquiring about inexpensive youth rifles for deer hunting. Handi-rifles and Remington youth models in .243 seem to be a recurring requests.

Dealt with those folks for years. They also only want them if they cost $100 and come with a free scope and box of shells.

mp510
September 9, 2008, 01:03 AM
And frankly how much margin is there in a Mosin?
They wholesale for $69-$70 each. They retail (and often sell for) $129 to $150 each.

W.E.G.
September 9, 2008, 01:04 AM
exotic dancers and Bar-B-Q, plus a few guns

Most guys would never want to go home.

Deus Machina
September 9, 2008, 01:11 AM
Battle rifles seem to be getting even more popular.

Try some really nice rifles. Higher-end ones than the big chains carry, and some low- and mid-level ones they don't.

+1 on the Saiga, too, if you can get it. The one 20"-barrel I saw locally, the shop wanted (probably still wants) $575 for, used. I bought a 16" (a $30 difference) NIB for $335+FFL, and that's including the layaway fees and shipping.

Vegaslaith
September 9, 2008, 01:20 AM
I would like to see more gun stores with battle rifles of all kinds. There is nothing more boring than a large gun store with racks and racks of bolt guns and shotguns...yawn

I definately agree. Only catering to the hunting crowd will limit your business. Remember, you're in the business of selling guns. Hunting is only one niche of the market.

AnaxImperator
September 9, 2008, 01:36 AM
I'd be afraid to go down the "C&R" path simply because of the returns. I'd bet guys that sell that in a retail storefront see more unhappiness once folks get them home than a brand new gun, then come in the next day wanting a refund. That's just my gut feeling though. And frankly how much margin is there in a Mosin?

C&R Mosin Nagants can be had individually for as little as $60, and I've heard a few importers will drop that price by $10-$20 for bulk orders. Turn around and sell them for $90-$120, depending on model/year/arsenal/rarity, and there's profit there. Dragonman here in Colorado Springs sells his Mosin Nagants for no less than $110-$120, and he has a pretty good turnover rate on them.

A majority of people who buy a used milsurp know what they're getting into, and I've only heard of returns to storefronts because the customers either weren't allowed to or didn't fully inspect their rifles before buying; and upon getting home & firing up the internet, they realized they'd bought a lemon or something that was misrepresented.
If you carry milsurps, just make sure your customers know that they're buying used, possibly 50yd+ old mass-produced, military firearms, and that they should have them checked out by a qualified gunsmith before firing them. Also, don't offer a return policy on milsurps bought inside the store. Although others on the various forums I frequent have, I've personally never been in a store which will offer a return on a used milsurp bought from the storefront, as the customer should be able to ascertain that their rifle is whole & basically mechanically sound.

I'd suggest stocking a few of these rifles: Mosins (try to find some Finnish ones!), Lee Enfields, Mausers, SKSs, Swiss K31s, Carcanos, Springfield '03s, and Garands. For handguns: Nagant 1895s, Makarov & CZ-82s, CZ-52s, Tokarev TT-33s, and Walther P-38s.
Sometimes from importers you can get milsurp ammo along with milsurp firearms & their accessories. But if not, try stocking ammo for the milsurp rifles & handguns you carry. I don't know how many times I've seen guys buy a Mosin Nagant or K31 and immediately ask for some ammo, only to come up empty and have to search for rounds elsewhere. Again using Dragonmans as an example; he sells Bulgarian milsurp 7.62x54R for $50/100rds, and even retail one can buy a 440rd-case for $80.

Hmmm, and for new stuff? AKs are becoming very popular it seems (especially 12ga. Saigas), along with CETMEs & FN-FALs (generally .308 battlerifles). There's also a growing demand by women for suitable handguns, so the Lady Smith S&Ws & Charter Arms revolvers would be a good bet, along with other small .38/.357 revolvers and 9mm/.380 semiautos.

sarduy
September 9, 2008, 01:44 AM
New retail store. what rifles to stock?

anything with the words 'evil looking' written all over

Ignition Override
September 9, 2008, 01:56 AM
Timberwolf:

KCMarine, Anax and others have many good ideas
I can not speak for (or understand) people who only like civilian-styled rifles, but the stores, including my favorite, with numerous military rifles leave a much stronger impression on me, especially with semi- or bolt-action wood versus 'polymer'. You see a military style and know that it was designed for serious business, and some have seen it.

Even two Gander Mountains (Jackson, TN and Evansville, IN) left little impression, and maybe I'm mistaken, but the only old mil. types seem to have been 3-7 Mosin Nagant 44s (and way overpriced at $150 after the intro $99 price: I walked out and will never return to a GM or Dick's).

If I had Tons of extra money (never will), ammo prices would not also be a limitation, could then help you out and buy two LE Jungle Carbines (very handy and wicked, against Japs in Burma), a Dragunov, about three more SKS;), maybe two more MN 44s;) (laminated are getting snatched up), a Saiga in x39, an FN FAL and "GI" M-1 Garand or M-14, Mauser K 98, finishing with about four AKs.

Used Mini 14 & 30, two MN 44s (lam.), but only one SKS. My first gun purchase was last October. No bug bit me... I woke up at age 52.
Ruger and Ruuskie etc, affordable mil.-styled carbines for life.

AnaxImperator
September 9, 2008, 02:43 AM
New retail store. what rifles to stock?

anything with the words 'evil looking' written all over

I'm with Sarduy on that one! :evil:

almostfree
September 9, 2008, 08:28 AM
I think the CZs would be great rifles to stock also, especially if they are difficult to find in your area. They aren't impossible to find here in Houston, but you still have to do some looking (if you want a decent price), and when I take mine out to the range, everyone wants one.

PPGMD
September 9, 2008, 08:53 AM
I'm friends with a manager of a local gun store, and the long guns that move the most are AR-15s, and AK pattern rifles. But generally it's the lower end of the price range that will move the fastest.

Side by side, coach guns, and other more classic designs won't move nearly as fast unless your local community has a market for those guns because of hunting, shooting sports, or simply a shooting demographic that prefers those designs.

So if it were me, I would have 2-3 Mossbergs, 2-3 AKs, 2-3 AR-15s, and 2-3 22LR (probably only the 10/22).

I would also put a mix of some of the newer exotic guns like the FS2000, PS90, and such, but those generally don't move that fast because of the higher price tags attached to them.

TAB
September 9, 2008, 09:11 AM
i'm shocked this has made it to page 2 with out this question being asked.


Where are you?


The answer to that question will effect more then replys more then anything else. Example, if your in a big time varmint hunting area, it would not be wise to stock a bunch of 338 win mags. If there is a big SASS community, you better have a good selction of lever actions.

RonE
September 9, 2008, 11:15 AM
Tikka, Howa and Weatherby make good looking rifles.

For a lot of people, it is not how it is built, or how accurate it is, it is how it looks, how shiney it is and how big the scope is that counts. Sort of like fishing lures....Give me a lure that casts good so that I look good, don't matter if it catches fish so long as it casts good.

gvnwst
September 9, 2008, 01:06 PM
I would also put a mix of some of the newer exotic guns like the FS2000, PS90, and such, but those generally don't move that fast because of the higher price tags attached to them.



i agree, any new 'cool' rifle is going to sell better than any old model 700... if you live around my area, i have been looking for a FN dealer. (i love PS90s and their marksman rifles) a good lineup of high quality bolt actions, some nice pump and semi auto shotguns (Saigas!!!), europeon battle rifles, CETME, FALs ect, and old euro rifles. there is a big market for mosins if you live in the right area. use the fact that you can sell things that Dicks can't.

Kleanbore
September 9, 2008, 05:16 PM
I was going to say the same thing as TAB and with just about the same lead-in.

What kind of game hunting is in the area? Is most of the surrounding area suburban, or are there a lot of farms? Are there ranges near by? What about the level of disposable income?

As TAB says, you won't sell many .338s in varmint country. I'll add that if people don't have the money to shop "up-scale" you'll sell more of the new little Savage CF varmint rifles than you would Coopers.

Also, say in time with the seasons, and know the hunting regulations inside and out.

Good luck.

22-rimfire
September 9, 2008, 05:20 PM
I would also specialize in 22 ammo. Lots of folks carry the centerfire ammo but few sell or have much of a selection of good 22 ammo. You could even do mail order sales.

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