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Dumb Gunstore Questions You've Heard?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Husker1911, Mar 24, 2005.

  1. Husker1911

    Husker1911 Well-Known Member

    I've been at this a while, making my living full-time managing a gunstore since 1991. Several times I've had people looking at scopes or binocs ask "How far can I see with this?" They mean "see clearly", but I usually mention how the moon is 250,000 miles away, and they can see that.

    The best I've ever had asked of me, however, follows this short story. I had an elderly gentleman come in looking for a defense firearm. In talking to him, I determined he knew very little about guns. I eliminated semi pistols from his choices, (too complicated). I showed him several double action revolvers, but he seemed confused by their operation. I handed him a 20" twelve gauge double, and he asked me "How many does this one hold?" I did NOT sell this man a gun!
  2. SpookyPistolero

    SpookyPistolero Well-Known Member

    Whenever I am in the shop and hear questions or am asked questions (I'm not an emloyee) I do my best not to make them feel silly. Everyone is a newbie at some point, and some have no one to ask certain things to.

    That said, a few visits ago a guy was there who didn't speak english all that well. He did recognize a few of the rifles though. I think he was there with his american friend, too. When he went to the pistol counter, he looked at some Sigs, and then at some 1911's. After handling them, he asked the fellow behind the counter if 'you could swap out the trigger on this one and put it on that one'. He wanted to take a 1911 trigger and put it on a sig.

    I understand being new to things, but extremely basic concepts of mechanics should be well within the ballpark.
  3. musher

    musher Well-Known Member

    The only dumb question is the one you don't ask. :)
    I'd say that goes double with stuff that might hurt you (or others).
  4. airbornekyle1

    airbornekyle1 Well-Known Member

    Im with musher. IM kind of a newbi to the firearms world. i know a whole lot about some basic firearms(military rifles, some hunting rifles) but very little about most shotguns/handguns. And when asking for help a lot for times people are very arrogant and stuck up about their knowledge of basic firearm information. which in most cases (if i didnt love guns/hunting so much i would have been turned off to the whole thing.
  5. pete f

    pete f Well-Known Member

    Was dropping off some stocks i had worked on when i heard a supposed expert brought in to help his buddy buy his new deer rifle say. "Buy the 7 mag, if it kicks too much you can always shoot 7 mauser out of it, hardly kicks at all if you do that"

    He was serious, too.
  6. Wildalaska

    Wildalaska member

    All righty!!!!! The answers below the question are generally what i think to myself, although I have been known to give a pithy response as I show em out the door...and all of these are true!

    1. What caliber is that 45-70?

    Its a 22 you jerk off

    2. If they are night sights, can you use them in the day?

    No, butt munch, they are like vampires, they jump off the gun and hide in the day

    3. Can you shoot a bear with this (holding up generally a 30-30 or a 25-06)?

    Sure sh*t for brains, and then the bear is liable to get pissed off at you and help out the gene pool by eating your ass

    4. Isnt this the gun that (add name here, Hinkley, Oswald, Ruby, Whitman, Son of Sam, John Wilkes Booth) used?

    Yep, the FBI gave it to us as a present afterward

    5. Wow, this looks like one my daddy had, did ya get it from him?

    Yeah, when he was passed out drunk years ago we broke into his house and took it, hey, your mama was awake, hope you and I never do a DNA test, son....

    6. Can you carry this concealed (holding a S&w 500 with an 8 inch barrel)?

    With your fat gut, bet ya can

    7. Morning, Wild West Guns, this is Ken, how can I help you?

    Hi, do you guys sell Guns?

    No we just call ourselves Wild west guns to hide the fact that we are an enema parlor.

    8. Morning, Wild West Guns, this is Ken, how can I help you?

    Hey hows the weather up there in Alaska?

    :cuss: (My pete peeeve!) arggggggggggggggggg

    9. Hi, can you make a take down M1A in 375 H&H? (I swear...Im not kidding)


    Why Not? ( o boy got a real rocket scientist here)

    Well, becasue the M1A, to start off with, wont handle a 375 H&H....

    Well cant you build something like it in 375 H&H?

    Not at a reasonable cost....

    Well how much?

    Umm (OK gonna smoke this one out)..OK, about $10,000...

    Wow...thats a lot of money, do you have lay away?


    10. Whats the best you can do on this one?

    How about I add $100 to the price

    11. Morning, Wild West Guns, this is Ken, how can I help you?

    Well hey, hows it hanging in the old igloo, yu-uk, uk uk. Well hey, I was reading about you in a magazine and wonder if you can shoot 50 Alaskans in a 30-30?

    Yep, I wanna be there to watch too.

    12. Morning, Wild West Guns, this is Ken, how can I help you?

    Hi waht street are you on?

    71st and the Frontage road

    71st...is that between 70th and 72nd?

    No actually its between 5th and 6tth you ninny

    13. Morning, Wild West Guns, this is Ken, how can I help you?

    Hi I have a Hi Point 9mm, can you put a flash suppressor on it?


    14. to either Muffy the Shop Girl or Cheryl the Ship Girl...Hi I have a question about guns, can I speak to a guy? :)

    15. Well this here 30-06 is an awfully big gun here, dont know if my wife (whose usually there rolling her eyes) can handle the pain?

    Me to wife: You have any kids?
    Wife: I have 6
    Me to Husband: You think your wife cant handle recoil? Tell me there dude, ya ever pooped out an eight pound watermelon? Think you could handle that?
    Wife to me: Got a 338?

  7. gvass

    gvass Well-Known Member

    5 minutes ago someone just walked in and asked:
    "0.5 millimeter ammunition"
    "maybe for your refillable pencil, sir"
  8. spacemanspiff

    spacemanspiff Senior Member

    that would explain the stirrups in the restroom. at least, i hope it does.
  9. wasrjoe

    wasrjoe Well-Known Member

    Hey now, I've learned the hard way that most gunshops have a sucker price. Until those guys go away, I'm going to try and haggle. Nothing wrong with a guy trying to cut through the BS and get a real price.
  10. Zach S

    Zach S Well-Known Member

    You hang out at the store so often you get mistaken for an employee? I'm glad I'm not the only one...

    One that I find funny, for two reasons, is they see me behind the counter and ask "do you work here?" Thats like walking up to a LEO in uniform and asking "you a cop?"

    I also find it funny because I dont actually work there, its just that I wind up working when it gets busy since I hang out there so often. It works out nicely, he gets free help, I have an excuse not to go home.

    You have no idea how tempting this is...
  11. HighVelocity

    HighVelocity Well-Known Member

    I heard a guy ask a seller at a gunshow about the Glock he was selling....

    "Can I carry this cocked and locked"? :rolleyes:
  12. teCh0010

    teCh0010 Well-Known Member

    That post just really made me want a garand in 9.3x62 with a fiberglass stock and a 22" barrel.
  13. Rexrider

    Rexrider Well-Known Member

    I have witnessed stupidity and ignorance on both sides of the counter.

    There is not much you can do about stupidity, but there is a cure for ignorance. It's called knowledge.

    All of us had to start from scratch as far as whatever level of knowledge we have obtained concerning firearms and ballistics. At some point, everyone has asked a stupid question out of ignorance. Asking questions is the starting point to gain knowledge.

    Shouldn't we be trying to answer some of these questions before showing someone the door or hanging up on them?

    Look, I don't have to make a living working in or running a gun shop. I will probably never know how frustrating it may be working with customers in that kind of environment. But doesn't good customer service dictate that you at least make an attempt to provide some insight as to why their questions are considered stupid?

    Granted some people are so stupid they don't even know it and it may be impossible to work with someone like that. It should only take a minute or two to determine if a customer needs/wants a little knowledge or is a hopeless case.

    I would be the first in line to defend your right to show someone the door if they have displayed even a hint of being unsafe and/or irresponsible. But somewhere amongst all this rampant stupidly may be a person who just needs a little knowledge to get started on the right track.

    From '98 to 2000 I worked on an internal computer helpdesk for the company I am still with. Believe me, it seemed as if there was rampant stupidity as far as computers were concerned. What I did find out was these people were not stupid, they were ignorant as to how a computer worked. All it took was a few minutes at the end of the call to explain why they had a problem. Why they can't use the CD tray as a cup holder. That the box on their desk was the whole computer and just a hard drive or modem. That the monitor could be turned off independently from the PC. That some of the files they deleted were actually needed by the operating system and where not just taking up space.

    Other people, of course, could not be convinced that the computer was not the tool of the devil and it was not on a personal mission to destroy their career. I wish I could have hung up on those people but I had to bite my tongue and say, "have a nice day".

    Someone who never held a gun and the only knowledge they have about guns is from Hollywood would have no way of knowing why you can't convert an M1A to fire a 375 H&H.

    Anyway, that is just my opinion. I could be wrong (or just stupid).
  14. Car Knocker

    Car Knocker Well-Known Member


    Well said!!
  15. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Well-Known Member

    i think this thread was meant to be humorous, not disparaging :D

    all of us started out not knowing anything about firearms and the only reason we do know about them is because we read up on it and ask silly questions.

    i had a U.S. Marine call me last night and ask me how to convert his personally owned AR15 to an M16 because he said he saw all the parts available in the Bushmaster catalog. I had to explain to him legalities more than weapons knowledge. but he isn't the only one who calls me with questions like this.

    i had a sheriff's deputy ask me if he could put a short barrel on his AR15 without registering it with NFA since he would only use it "on duty." i explained to him that even his agency's NFA weapons were in the NFA registry, so his personally owned, non-registered SBR would be a federal felony if he put the upper on the lower.

    i have had several private citizens inquire about getting a "Class III License." I have also had many people thinking that the AW Ban Sunset meant all post-86 machine guns were now legal for civilian sale.

    i have had citizens ask how they can legally own a Glock 18, an FN P90, and an HK G36.

    i had a private citizen offer me $3000 cash to meet him in the parking lot of a gun show to sell him a post-86 machine gun cash & carry.

    i had a gangbanger ask me how to convert his Glock to full auto.

    i had a nutjob, who happens to be a gunshow vendor (and a former FFL too....thinks he is some sort of sergeant or higher in a law enforcement agency of some sort, will pull out his wallet as if to show a badge or credentials but never opens it up) complain about the price of body armor then ask to buy it from me if i would discount it to his liking.

    but back to the original post.....

    then my business partner always has the phrase when people ask:

    "Are you willing to negotiate?"
    "Sure, I'm always willing to go up. It's priced at $875, but i'll do it for $900 for you." :D
    "But...but....you just raised the price?!" :confused:
    "That's right, I'm a better negotiator than you." :D

    "What's your best price?"
    "What's your best offer?"
    "No, I want to know your best price." :mad:
    "You see a price tag on there, that is what I am asking for the item. You tell me what you're willing to pay."
    "I'll offer you [insert 50% of retail price here]."
    "Thank you for your kind and generous offer."
    "So do we have a deal?"
    "No, sir. I am not in business to lose money."
    "But you'll have cash right now."
    "Yes, but I am losing money on this deal."

    "I can't believe you're asking so much for an AR-15. Didn't you know the ban ended?" :cuss:
    "Yes sir, but there is a certain cost to manufacture these items, the price to manufacture the parts to assemble this rifle did not decrease with the ban."
    "I'll take one if you can do $500 out the door."
    "Sir, the raw cost of the parts exceeds $500, not including the labor to assemble it and the shipping charges."
    "BUT THE BAN IS OVER!" :fire:
    "Yes sir, it is, and thus parts that could not be put on the gun [i.e. flash suppressor] now can be put on. That means additional labor to thread a barrel and additional cost of parts to put on a flash suppressor. So, don't you think the cost would increase with additional parts and labor?"
    "Well I'm going to hold out until I can buy one brand new for $500."
    "Okay, sir."

    and the best ones:

    "Do you charge sales tax?"
    "We collect sales tax, we do not charge it. The state charges it, we collect it."
    "Does this price include sales tax?"
    "Do I have to fill out a yellow sheet?"
    "So you're a dealer?"
    "Yes. I am an FFL." never mind the displayed FFL, SOT, Youth Handgun Safety Act Notice, and about 50+ firearms including machine guns, silencers, etc.
    "So you can't sell me a gun without paperwork?"
    "It is a federal felony for me to do that."
    "Well I don't pay sales tax and I don't do paperwork on guns."
    "Thank you." :confused:
  16. patent

    patent Well-Known Member

    >>>Wife to me: Got a 338?

  17. Old Dog

    Old Dog Well-Known Member

    I wish I had a dollar for every time I've heard someone -- while pointing at a stainless steel handgun -- ask, "Can I see that nickel-plated (revolver/automatic) there?"

    Too many people had that Tommy Lee Jones line from U.S. Marshals stuck in their heads ("Get rid of that nickle-plated sissy gun") when he made the remark to Robert Downey Jr.'s character regarding his stainless Taurus (908 or 911?) pistol ...

    Heard an old guy in a local gun store, when pointing at a SS Springfield Mil-Spec (in .45 ACP, of course), ask to see the "nickel-plated automatic" version of the "9 millimeter I used in the Marines."
  18. chickenfried

    chickenfried Well-Known Member

    expect my call shortly. thank god for verizon, free long distance.

  19. Onmilo

    Onmilo Well-Known Member

    "Yo man, I be wantin' a lazer for my Jennings deuce deuce, whatcha' got?
  20. Sergeant Sabre

    Sergeant Sabre Well-Known Member

    Working at a gun store, I can identify with being asked "How far can I see with this?" when a customer is looking at some glass. I still havn't come up with a good answer for that one, but I think the one about the moon being 250,000 miles away will be the next thing I try.

    Here are some questions I have been asked:

    (Note: I know that some people just have an elementary knowledge base. I was there, too. I understand this and I'm always very courteous and willing to help people who just don't know)

    "What's the waiting period on this gun?" :cuss:

    "I need ammo for my son's .22. I see all you have out here is .22 Long Rifle . Where is the regular .22 ammo?"

    Me: "So, what are you going to use this .17HMR for?"
    Customer: "Woodchucks, skunks, whatever. Varmints, mostly"
    Me: "I see. How far are most of your shots?"
    Customer: "Well, there is a swamp about a quarter mile behind my house, I'm going to sit on my back porch and shoot them when I see them"
    Me: "A quarter...uh...how far?" :scrutiny:

    Me: "A .300 Ultra Magnum? Ya, I got one. Here it is. What are you going to do with it?"
    Customer: "I want to take shots out to about 600 yards on deer"
    Me: :uhoh:

    "Does X-caliber have more knockdown power than Y-caliber?" :cuss:

    "How much magnification do I need to shoot X-hundred yards?"

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