Serious Withdrawal


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WALKERs210
November 15, 2012, 12:37 AM
About two years a go a really great guy opened a gun shop about 6 miles from my home. Each and every time I had to do shopping for groceries or other thing I would always make my first stop there. What I loved about the place was everyone was very knowledgeable, friendly and prices were always great. Well guess the profit margin was not there and they had to close the door. It has been around three weeks and I have not bought a new gun or even a bullet since then. Having serious withdrawal, and really hate to drive around 25 miles round trip to shop at my second favorite gun shop. The owner of the business that folded said they had issues receiving gun from distributors and had very little in the shelf's and racks. Has others heard anything about availability of firearms. Glad I didn't do what I had given thought to and that was to invest around $10-15,000 to assist and be a silent partner.

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r1derbike
November 15, 2012, 12:42 AM
Well...a lot of the popular firearms are being allocated by manufacturers to send to big-box, high volume venues. Mom & Pop shops are great, if they may stay in business, and I do shop them here for accessories I need pronto.

Take the Colt 6920 being sold at Walmart; incredible they are selling those and other black rifles, to smaller retailers dismay. It's all about the numbers now.

1911 guy
November 15, 2012, 01:04 AM
The sad part is what will happen when those Mom & Pop places go out of business. The big box stores then jack up prices above what Mom & Pop were charging because now there isn't local competition. I'd rather pay the extra couple bucks. But when the issue is supply, there's a whole 'nuther can o' worms.

I've got two shops pretty close to me. One is primarily an archery shop but will order anything you want, the other is a typical LGS with a surprising amount of inventory. I'd be bummed if either of them closed up shop.

hq
November 15, 2012, 04:13 AM
I second 1911 guy's comment about rather paying a little extra to keep local shops in business. Ordering online has roughly the same shipping time as it takes a local shop to order the same item and a few bucks (or euros in my neck of the woods) here and there can make the difference of having a gun shop nearby in the future.

Only when I want something they have real difficulties to order, I shop elsewhere. That does happen every now and then, distributors priorize volume retailers with high demand items. As a sidenote, ever increasing amount of red tape in US export licensing has had a dramatic effect in availability of many items, smaller importers - which have mainly been local gun shops - are going out of business. Selling the same bulk stuff as everyone else is hard when you have to think about profit margins and price everything accordingly.

Ranger Roberts
November 15, 2012, 10:01 AM
Here in Central Pa, there is a store that caters specifically to LEO's (you need a badge/ID to purchase). A while back I had asked if they carry a specific Beretta, and the guy who answered the phone informed me that they do not carry any Beretta's because Beretta requires them to sell a certain $$ each month in order to stock them in the store. He told me that most dept.'s in this area carry Glock, so they are not able to hit that $$ amount. Again, this is a store that caters to LEO and LEO depts, so I am not sure if this applies to mom and pop stores that sell to the public. Also, I am not sure if all manufacturers do this. I wonder if he had a problem getting new inventory because of lack of sales for major manufacturers?

WALKERs210
November 15, 2012, 10:09 AM
What is happening to the Mom & Pop stores has been going on for a while. For many years the majority of "people in right places" fought tooth and nail to prevent a Wal-Mart from opening in the city limits. It happened and within one year a dozen small business were closed. One man who had a TV and electronics store wound up closing because Wally World could sell a new (cheap made) TV for about what it cost to repair the older one. Only good thing for this man was he was ready for retirement and wound up custom building computers at home until again Wally World started selling cheaper than he could order parts to build a new one for. Makes you wonder why the federal government has not looked into these bargain store as a Monopoly.

JERRY
November 15, 2012, 10:10 AM
the best way to make one million dollars with a gunshop is to start out with two million dollars. it is a tough business in many places, market research is vital for specific locations in order to know if one will survive.

bannockburn
November 15, 2012, 10:44 AM
I think another problem with some smaller Mom and Pop gunshops is that they're part-time operations with limited hours as to when they're open. Typically one of them works full time at another job and the other one works at the gunshop a couple of days during the week. There's one like this nearby where I live but it seems whenever I drive by there (can be anytime during the day and evening as well), they're closed.

r1derbike
November 15, 2012, 11:33 AM
I think another problem with some smaller Mom and Pop gunshops is that they're part-time operations with limited hours as to when they're open. Typically one of them works full time at another job and the other one works at the gunshop a couple of days during the week. There's one like this nearby where I live but it seems whenever I drive by there (can be anytime during the day and evening as well), they're closed.This is the case with one tactical/sales shop in my area as well. Both husband and wife work other jobs, and it is rare I drive by and see it open. I did stop-in one day, to give them a package of .40 snap caps that was marked .45 (the caliber I needed), from Amazon.

utbrowningman
November 15, 2012, 02:54 PM
What is the WM Colt price and what is the Mom/Pop shop price?

mljdeckard
November 15, 2012, 03:00 PM
I think they have to make some hard choices.

One case that comes to mine is a local shop here. (With a VERY popular web busines.) I think they realized that expertise is an investment for which they do not get a good return. If they hire someone who is highly knowledgeable about guns, they will probably have to pay them more than a college kid who just drools at the idea of working in a gun store. The result is, $9hr employees, for whom I have frequently had to call the management to complain about their poor muzzle discipline, who know pretty much nothing about guns except their current prices. They can do this, because too many customers like me will do all of our homework BEFORE we go in the store, and we really don't need any information from their counter chimps......besides the price. The owners and management know a lot about guns, but they are seldom on the floor. What the heck do I know?

460Kodiak
November 15, 2012, 06:25 PM
Having serious withdrawal, and really hate to drive around 25 miles round trip to shop at my second favorite gun shop.

No offense.... but cry me a river. I drive 80 miles round trip to grocery shop. I'm sure there are plenty of people on this forum that drive much further.

The cure for your withdrawal is only a "hop, skip, and a get off your ass" away.

larryh1108
November 15, 2012, 07:27 PM
It happened and within one year a dozen small business were closed. One man who had a TV and electronics store wound up closing because Wally World could sell a new (cheap made) TV for about what it cost to repair the older one. Only good thing for this man was he was ready for retirement and wound up custom building computers at home until again Wally World started selling cheaper than he could order parts to build a new one for. Makes you wonder why the federal government has not looked into these bargain store as a Monopoly.

Unfortunately, this is called progress. It's how we expand as a culture. Shops who did not keep up with the times closed. Read this thread. Mom & pop stores were often closed during business hours because they worked other jobs. These folks did have families to support and it's a shame they didn't make it. 80% of restaurants fail. It happens. Walmart came to town and gave us lower prices. Read your own words. You can get a new tv for the cost of fixing your old tv. It's cheaper made? Perhaps, but you can buy an extended warranty as well. These have 40" screens and cost $275. That old 32" tube tv works just fine, I'm sure, but this is the time of disposable electronics. The consumer gets more for less. The sad part is most of the products are outsourced to China and other third world countries. If a Walmart type store opened and sold mainly USA made stuff I'd bet they would give Walmart a run for their money. Yes, a dozen or so small stores closed but the consumer got cheaper prices and the local economy picked up 200 jobs. It may not be an ideal culture but everyone who says Walmart is a big, bad bully doesn't look at the whole picture. Local sales tax revenue is huge. It improves roads and local infrastructure. They don't chase mom & pop out of town and then raise prices like I see all over the net. They start cheap and stay cheap and sell in volume. The consumer saves money. How is that a bad thing?

Teachu2
November 15, 2012, 07:43 PM
My LGS doesn't have a single new 9mm pistol in stock. They get something in and it's sold immediately. Last time I ordered a gun from them, it took 6 weeks to get - and Bud's had them in stock, cheaper, the whole time.

I like the people at the LGS, but hate waiting a lot longer to pay substantially more for a gun. Example: Glock G26 with Glock night sights, $547 in stock at Bud's. Add $6 insurance and $25 for a transfer dealer, and it's $578. LGS is $625 and it could be 2-3 months to get it, with no guarantee of that. That's not acceptable to me. The unknown delivery date is more important than the $48, but neither breaks in favor of the LGS.

WALKERs210
November 15, 2012, 08:02 PM
460Kodiak My only complaint is not the 25 mile drive but a super place to shop is gone. I drove 18wheelers for over 30 years and an overnight trip of 800 miles meant nothing to me. Since 2007 I have battled cancer, so far beating it, two heart attacks, screwed up back to boot. Then my wife is fighting her own battle just trying to keep her leg and stay alive, she has been in and out of hospital several times in the last three months. Not doing the poor ole pitiful me just putting forward why a 25 mile trip now is a major trip. As for shooting I am one of the lucky ones, open the back door and let rip with just about anything up to a small cannon. Between my 12 yr old grandson and myself we have already cut down two trees and looking at another one to start working on. My major point of the post was the loss of a great place to shop both price and great people to deal with.

Warp
November 15, 2012, 08:21 PM
The sad part is what will happen when those Mom & Pop places go out of business. The big box stores then jack up prices above what Mom & Pop were charging because now there isn't local competition. I'd rather pay the extra couple bucks. But when the issue is supply, there's a whole 'nuther can o' worms.

I've got two shops pretty close to me. One is primarily an archery shop but will order anything you want, the other is a typical LGS with a surprising amount of inventory. I'd be bummed if either of them closed up shop.
I haven't noticed any big box stores jacking up prices.

If they did, I'd just use my Amazon Prime membership that much more. Or use one of the many online retailers I like where I can get basically anything.

A free market is a great thing.

1911 guy
November 15, 2012, 11:48 PM
Couple years ago a Wally World came to Middlefield, Ohio. Home of the second (actually, I think it's third now) largest Amish community in the world. Prices were great. So great, in fact, that many smaller hardware, general merchandise and even a few specialty stores closed up shop within the next two years. Everybody was going to Wally World. Then they jacked up prices until the Amish are hiring drivers to haul them an hour round trip for better prices. Why do I know so much about this town and the "big box"? I grew up in Middlefield and currently live just across the county line from it. Big Box might lower his prices again to bring some business back, but those small places are gone forever.

With few exceptions, the loss of a small business is a disproportionate hit on a community and quite frankly a loss to the community. What we lightly toss aside in the name of "progress" is what makes us communities rather than a collection of individuals with no roots. Progress can kiss my lily white...

I am a troglodye and I approved this message.

barnbwt
November 16, 2012, 12:12 AM
I haven't noticed any big box stores jacking up prices.

If they did, I'd just use my Amazon Prime membership that much more. Or use one of the many online retailers I like where I can get basically anything.

A free market is a great thing.

I'm positive the internet "killed" more small gun stores than Wal-mart. Same with Circuit City and now Best Buy, the Record Industry, and a million other outmoded business constructs. Meanwhile, there are more Moms and Pops selling stuff online than ever before, for lower prices--just without the pleasant conversations.

But that's what this place is for, right? How many retired Gunstore owners/employees jaw-bone around here all day, now?;)

TCB

What we lightly toss aside in the name of "progress" is what makes us communities rather than a collection of individuals with no roots.

Can't agree with you more on that. As for the next thing, well, I'm not Amish;)

tobenheim
November 16, 2012, 12:33 AM
The staff at my LGS greets me by name whenever I walk in the store. When is the last time you got greeted by name at the gun counter at your Walmart? 'Nuff said...

Warp
November 16, 2012, 12:34 AM
The staff at my LGS greets me by name whenever I walk in the store. When is the last time you got greeted by name at the gun counter at your Walmart? 'Nuff said...

lol

Most consumers are fairly price conscious.

Also, I don't think I need to mention how many complaints gun forums generate about LGS employees giving absolutely terrible advice on a regular basis.

Pros and cons on either side.

Plan2Live
November 16, 2012, 07:08 AM
In the end, we are the ones responsible if the mom & pop shops go out of business. Every time we make a purchase we decide what is more important, tradition or price. I rarely buy anything off the Internet. I prefer to support local vendors even if I pay a little more while doing so. I do this across the board, not just with gun related items.

45_auto
November 16, 2012, 07:19 AM
I rarely buy anything off the Internet. I prefer to support local vendors even if I pay a little more while doing so. I do this across the board, not just with gun related items.

Before the internet, gun enthusiasts used to stay in communication and discuss things by something that's now called "snail mail". Did you ever wonder where the term "postal match" came from?

I'm sure the postal service would appreciate it if we'd go back to buying stamps to correspond. The chances of people moving back to significantly slower and more limited communications are the same as most people not taking advantage of significantly lower pricing on firearms and supplies through the internet.

It's called "progress". When's the last time the vast majority of people went to a small butcher shop instead of a grocery store for their meat?

chhodge69
November 16, 2012, 07:34 AM
This isn't about the plight of gun shops it's about feeding your habit!

I have two letters and a squiggly symbol for you: C&R

no more driving 25 miles - FedEx brings them to your doorstep

Plan2Live
November 16, 2012, 07:36 AM
I drive past a big box Home Improvement store to frequent a non-chain hardware store and I often buy meat from a local non-chain meat market rather than the Publix store a block away. I buy my plants from an independant plant nursery and get my business cards and flyers for my CWP business from local print shops rather than the Internet based printers who would charge less but wouldn't send me a single student. Moving Forward isn't always Progress.

Kyle M.
November 16, 2012, 08:15 AM
My lgs is owned by a farmer who's wife is a doctor, he also works part time for the local sheriffs department. He has been running the gunshop for 35 years as more of a hobby for extra money. He has lower prices than I have ever seen at any other shop or big box store even when there having a sale. For example he gets 35% off msrp from ruger and 25% off remington, winchester, S&W and several other mfgs. He then adds $30 to his cost and thats what he sells them for, most of the time he'll even cover tax for you. If you want to trade or sell a gun he'll figure up what he can sell it for and offer you $30 less. He has a 60 day layaway and no minimum down payment. It will be a sad day when he retires being that the next nearest shop is 25 miles away and has outrageous prices on everything.

mr.trooper
November 16, 2012, 09:09 AM
the size of the store isn't all that important - an FFL can order as many guns as they can afford. If they have the clients they can do good buisness.

The problem as I see it is multi-fold:

* Many LGS owners are really nice guys ... but not so great businessmen. They make poor decisions that end up draining their coffers and closing their doors - commonly they stock items that they think are 'cool', but that their local client base have no demand for, freezing up their funds and cluttering up their shelves. A $900 gun that sits on your shelf for 2 years, and only sells at a steep discount ends up loosing you a significant percentage.

* Other LGS owners are ... not such nice guys, and even WORSE businessmen. I have met a fair number of their kind. Not only do they fall into the same traps as the other LGS owners, they have other things working against them (themselves). They do things like use a UN flag as a door mat, Keep a larger than life bust of Hitler in their shop, shoot up exterior residential doors and leave them propped up outside their shop, ect. ect. that end up making them look trashy, creepy, or crazy to 99% of the people that walk into their stores. Many of these 'unique' individuals also have some shady business practices as well - buying cases of AR mags before elections so they can scalp them at absurd prices afterward, selling gently used guns as new, stocking obscure rifle cartridges so they can ream the posterior of some poor hunter who forgot his ammo, ect.

I have seen all of these things and more perpetrated by LGS owners in recent years.

I can completely understand why LGS have trouble keeping clients, and I completely understand why manufacturers don't want to deal with them anymore.

hardluk1
November 16, 2012, 09:26 AM
Our LGS is doing great and just expanded there firearms display area. They are also full service general store so you can buy your camo, boots or work cloths and get a sandwich or milk and bread for home while waiting for your firearm to be processed. Business is good here . When they order firearms it can be 50 at a time too. Get a better price break.

ScrapMetalSlug
November 17, 2012, 08:54 PM
Big Box might lower his prices again to bring some business back, but those small places are gone forever

Why? It isn't impossible for someone to start a new "mom and pop" store if it can be profitable. I see a lot of local gun shops run as a hobby rather than a business without caring if they ever sell anything, they just want to talk to people who come in.

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