Bad place to buy guns in Houston


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rio nueces
May 26, 2011, 12:20 PM
Visited a Pawn One yesterday here in Houston, found a nice Savage Rifle/Shotgun. Wanted to look at it. First had to hand over my ID, no problem. Gun had a gun lock of course.
Asked them to remove gun lock so I could check the action.
THEY NOW WILL NOT REMOVE THE GUN LOCK. You cannot check the action before you purchase.
Visited another Pawn One today. Nice Ruger Service-Six, pre-warning. I would have certainly bought it.
Asked them to remove gun lock so I could check action. They would not.
They said that is the 'new policy', they had an 'incident'.
Now I don't know about you guys, but I would never buy a used gun without checking the action (gently, no dry-firing even, unless I asked first), checking bore condition, etc. I've been burned that way before, twice.
I asked for the number of headquarters, they said I could leave them my contact info and they would 'have someone get back to me'. Of course they can make any policy they want, it's their business. But I don't have to do my business there.
I left my info, and we'll see.
It's very sad we have fewer and fewer places to find guns and ammo for sale.

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788Ham
May 26, 2011, 01:36 PM
I have to agree with you on this! I frequent a pawn about 10 miles from my house, just to scope things out once in awhile, they aren't like this, if they choose to go this route, I'll look else where. I've bought a couple of firearms there, my buddy has also, they are on the gentler side of things, course they all carry .45 slabsides too !

19-3Ben
May 26, 2011, 03:05 PM
One of the most discouraging incidents I ever had was visiting Hoffman's Guns in Newington CT.
Tt was about a month after Ruger had released the SR9. I went into the shop and happened upon an SR9 in the used case. My thoughts in this order:
1) AWESOME!! only a month after release and I can buy it used to save some money!
2) Kinda suspicious. I wonder if there's something wrong with it.

I inspected it. Nice condition all around. Looked as close to new as it could be without actually being new. I asked the clerk if we could field strip so that I can see the internals. His reply was
"I don't know how, and we're not going to do that unless you buy it first."

I walked out of the store. Despite unbeatable prices and an in stock selection better than anywhere I've ever been, I won't do business with them any more.
If I wanted to buy it without checking the gun out, I'd have bought it online. In this day and age of the internet, gun shops really need to focus on customer service.

pikid89
May 26, 2011, 09:10 PM
^indeed...it seems all the gun stores i go into and want to see a gun, the guy at the counter seems peeved that im bothering him and keeping him from watching his little tv

ErikO
June 14, 2011, 05:57 PM
Stories like that definately remind me to thank the folks behind the counters at the two places I go to 'fondle' firearms.

SentinelStrategic
June 15, 2011, 01:03 AM
I have made it a habit to avoid most small-time gun shops and pawn shops. Living in a metropolitan area, there are lots of pawn shops and smaller gun shops. They are mostly a joke and have the same issues that are mentioned above. I've also found that the small-time gun shops, at least around here, have guys that know far too much about a few things and far too few about everything else.

One such shop was obsessed with CZ. I was in there looking at handguns initially. "you gotta buy the CZ75. It's better than anything you have." I looked at rifles. "you gotta buy the CZ550." "CZ semi-auto shotgun" "CZ over-under." I kept telling them I didn't want a CZ, but they continued. I finally got fed up with it and said, "CZs suck. I wouldn't buy one with YOUR money." Now, I don't think CZ sucks, but I was just sick of hearing it. You'd have thought I brought their world down. Their natural response was to attack me and my guns, so they asked what I shot in an attempt to rip on me. Needless to say, I haven't been there since.
Unfortunately, I've seen this quite often and am still amazed at the unrelenting brand loyalty some of these shops have. There's a reason why the gun shop I buy my guns at is a multi-million dollar business with two locations- they sell everything and don't blindly push only one weapon.

David2011
June 15, 2011, 02:00 AM
I've been in a pawn shop that required that you pay for the firearm before they would call in the instant check. If you didn't pass they refunded 90% of the price. I was recently in another that flat out had a charge for filling out the paperwork and making the call. I fail to see how either if these is not in violation of Federal law which prohibits charging for background check calls since they cost the seller nothing. Neither needs my money.

David

rio nueces
June 15, 2011, 12:47 PM
I have made it a habit to avoid most small-time gun shops and pawn shops. Living in a metropolitan area, there are lots of pawn shops and smaller gun shops. They are mostly a joke and have the same issues that are mentioned above. I've also found that the small-time gun shops, at least around here, have guys that know far too much about a few things and far too few about everything else.


I think you are right on about "guys that know far too much about a few things and far too few about everything else." But that helps you sometimes in pawn shops. A friend bought a fine 1937 matching Luger pistol here in Houston about 5 years ago for under $300.
When he went back the salesgirl said she had almost been fired over it, that it was her "learning gun".
Sometimes the salespeople are so stupidly arrogant they will insist on selling you a $600 gun for $200 because the KNOW it's only worth $200.
This happened to me in a pawn shop.
But you must go to 100 pawn shops to find that one great deal. It's like fishing for the big ones I guess.

Houston Pawn One's new policy re: no opening of the action before buying really bums me out. There is no way I could buy a gun from them unless I could give it a good reasonable check first.
It's like buying a car without starting the engine.

joed
June 15, 2011, 01:43 PM
Well, why didn't you put your money down on the counter with the condition you get to try the action first. Seems that would be acceptable if you were serious about buying.

To many "Tire Kickers" out there, that's why they adopted that rule.

rio nueces
June 15, 2011, 02:41 PM
Well, why didn't you put your money down on the counter with the condition you get to try the action first. Seems that would be acceptable if you were serious about buying.

To many "Tire Kickers" out there, that's why they adopted that rule.

Absolutely not an option. The rule there, as explained to me, is 'no removing the gun lock until gun is bought, paid for, and out of the store, period'.

the rule was made after some pawn shop here had an 'incident', an attempted robbery with a pawn shop gun that was loaded by a 'customer'.

stchman
June 15, 2011, 03:25 PM
Yes, I get sick of gun stores thinking they are doing me a favor by selling me a firearm.

I am free to take my business elsewhere.

JohnInFlorida
June 15, 2011, 06:01 PM
I had it happen to me this morning @ Academy Sports ... wanted to inspect a Taurus PT709. Especially wanted to look at the "Glock style" trigger and judge the pull weight. I was told by the salesman that he "couldn't" (wouldn't?) remove the trigger lock. Obviously, they didn't want my money.
And, not that it'll make any difference but, I e-mailed the home office to inform them of the fact that some other company would be glad to take my money which they obviously did not want.

wally
June 15, 2011, 09:18 PM
Now I don't know about you guys, but I would never buy a used gun without checking the action (gently, no dry-firing even, unless I asked first), checking bore condition, etc

Absolutely, the dry fire and other slightly more aggressive tests are prefaced by "I need to do these tests and if it passes, here is my cash".

The only exception if you have some kind of 48-hr (minimum) satisfaction guarantee return policy in writing.

And the stores wonder why everyone around here buys at gun shows -- better prices and you get to handle a sample. (They will remove the zip tie when you show them your money :) )

heeler
June 15, 2011, 10:17 PM
To the original poster...Having been in a few Pawn One's in Houston I have found some better staffed than others but I knew nothing of this new policy which will pretty much eliminate me stopping there in the future.
Besides,I have scored far better deals on firearms at independently owned pawn shops in Houston anyway.
I mean after all there are thousands here to look through.

JellyJar
June 16, 2011, 12:22 AM
SentinelStragetic

In retail there is sometimes something called "push" money. It is a bonus that the vendor will pay directly to the salesman if they sell either any of their product or certain products the vendor is pushing.

Your experience in that shop sounds just like CZ was offering push money to the salesman.

Carter
June 16, 2011, 12:54 AM
So far the only store that has refused to take the trigger locks off of a gun for me was Bass Pro shop. Actually, its the only store I've been to that uses trigger locks.
I asked the salesman if he could remove the trigger lock on a particular handgun I was thinking about buying and he just went, "Nope." It came across as rude and that he thought I was stupid for asking.

I will never buy a handgun that I can not manipulate the trigger on first.

Of course the people that ask to see every gun in the counter and have every trigger lock removed don't help potential buyers that honestly just want to know what they're buying.

Even the jerks at this one gunshop in Charlotte that jack their prices way up put snap caps in their guns and let you dry fire them. Heck, today one salesman knew I was just looking for fun and offered to show me anything I wanted and to hang out as long as I wanted. Made me almost forgive them for asking $600 for a gen 3 glock...almost.

Ala Dan
June 16, 2011, 12:56 PM
"Tire kicker's or not", everyone is a potential customer and should be treated as
such. Courtesy is a MUST, in our store; besides we offer free 90 day credit (with
approval, of course) or a 90 day lay-a-way program. Prices are competetive with
all other FFL's, in our area. For example, we are runn'in a sale on S&W 642's
for $349.88 + applicable sales tax; or $549.88 + tax for 642's with Crimson
Trace Laser Grips.

Bubbles
June 16, 2011, 02:53 PM
There's no reason not to let a customer inspect a firearm, which includes checking the bore. Heck, if it's a long gun we'll pull out the bore scope and let him check the inside of the barrel as well if he likes.

We also function-check used and/or consigned guns for sale, unless it's something like a stripped lower, as we don't need to get a reputation for selling broken firearms.

smalls
June 16, 2011, 04:54 PM
Last time I was at the gunshop, I was just browsing, when the salesman approached me. I told him I was interested in an officer's size 1911, and asked what he thought was worth taking a look at. I hinted that I was far away from making a purchase, but wanted to do some research. He proceeded to take out every model they had, and let me play with them, however many I wanted to look at at a time to compare. THEN! He recommended a gun that they don't even carry in stock! I don't recall ever being told no there for anything short of me asking to have a free gun.

medalguy
June 17, 2011, 12:32 AM
Maybe I'm lucky. I walked into an Academy recently ansd asked if they had a Beretta 92 Compact. The guy behind the counter reached behind him and pulled one out of a box, dropped the mag, and racked the slide back, checked the bore, and handed me the gun. I ended up buying it from him. Think I would have bought it if I hadn't been able to fondle it?

wideym
June 17, 2011, 01:57 AM
Maybe it's only the large cities, with a larger urban population unfamiliar with firearms handling, that insists on trigger locks and buying the gun before trying the action.

In Ft. Smith, Arkansas, there are many gun and pawn shops (which I freqent) but only Academy Sports has gun locks and refuses to remove them. Then again Academy only sells brand new firearms, not used and abused ones.

One gunshop I frequent will let me try out a used firearm before I buy to make sure it is accurate and functions properly.

liist
June 17, 2011, 02:10 AM
The big sporting goods stores and Walmart have those policies from people who know nothing about guns, but usually they sell guns that you probably already have. I wouldn't even have to look at the gun if I wanted another 10/22 from Walmart.

It's nice when stores let you handle their guns. The local army surplus store let me handle handguns while I'm under 21 when I was buying cheap camping supplies. Just last week I bought my second and third rifles from them, and they definitely weren't the cheapest place I can find.

Liberation
June 17, 2011, 02:29 AM
I love how they think you are just going to pull out a magazine and shoot them.

USAF_Vet
June 17, 2011, 05:31 PM
Of the two LGS I go to, only has trigger locks on anything, the used long guns. There a hundreds of them, all on racks out in the open. Hand guns are in the display cases, no trigger locks. New long guns are behind the display cases, no trigger locks. If you want to see anything, they will oblige and remove the TL if these is one.

By state law, gun shops must supply a TL with every firearms purchase. Funny thing is, they didn't even install the TL on the shotgun I bought from them. They just put it in my case along with the gun and paperwork.

The other LGS I go to doesn't have TLs on anything. Nor cables, nor any other kind of security device.

spartand003
June 17, 2011, 10:25 PM
At my local shop, they will even disassemble the gun for you, be it handgun, rifle, or shotgun. My local guys do a great job of selling stuff. I've even had a guy load up a mag with snap caps so I could run them through the action. And they allow customers to take them out back and test them if you buy/supply the ammo.

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