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Starting up a shop...

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Joshua M., Sep 7, 2014.

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  1. Joshua M.

    Joshua M. Member

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    I was wandering if anybody has found a reasonable priced ammo wholesaler. We just got our FFL, and are trying to get a shop going, but we ahvent gotten ahold of a good ammo distributor. Thanks
     
  2. XD Fan

    XD Fan Member

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    Stuck up here (rural Missouri) and got Dixie on my
    Good luck.
     
  3. longknife12

    longknife12 Member

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    I'd see if I couldn't team up with several shops to form a buying cartel. Most
    group buys at Shot Show.....gives you a lot more buying power. JMT.
    Good luck.
    Dan
     
  4. Reloadron
    • Contributing Member

    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    We had a nice little shop during the 90s in Bedford, Ohio. The problem with ammunition was weight which really added to shipping cost. Additionally as a niche we sold a good line of reloading supplies where HAZMAT hurt with powder and primers.

    Fortunately back then there was Ashland Shooting Supplies (Ashland, Ohio) and Buckeye Shooting Supplies. Eventually they merged and we did a good deal of business with them. I would make the drive from the Cleveland area down to Ashland and pick everything up saving on all the shipping and HAZMAT.

    While 20 years has passed I know Ashland and Buckeye (ABN Ashland Buckeye Network) is long gone but I would try and find a good distributor close to you and see if you can't pick up orders. We also did a lot of surplus buying from SOG (Southern Ohio Gun).

    A friend of mine does quite a bit of business with W L Baumler Co Inc Lorain, Ohio. I know they actually deliver on some orders and maybe you can pickup there. No clue where in Ohio you are but would be nice if you could find a local distributor. Unfortunately I see where Cheaper Than Dirt is now involved with Baumler so I don't know what discount FFL dealers are afforded.

    Best Wishes and Good Luck
    Ron
     
  5. RustyShackelford

    RustyShackelford member

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    GunInsurance.com ....

    For new small business owners or those who want to start a new gun shop, Id suggest www.guninsurance.com . They cover a lot of legal & business issues. I'm sure they can provide help or advice. They've been in the gun industry for decades.

    www.guninsurance.com
     
  6. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    Suspect it'll depend on what you call reasonably priced, but you won't find anyone who will give you credit or terms. You'll need cash to pay for it COD.
    Your supplier of everything else likely carries or knows who carries ammo.
     
  7. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Granted some time ago but we had no problem setting up accounts with our suppliers and for those who we didn't we just used credit cards. However, with a good credit standing and a personal good credit history setting up accounts wasn't a problem. My friend who owns a good sized shop has accounts with his distributors, he never had a problem. Why would it be a problem?

    Ron
     
  8. zfk55

    zfk55 Member

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    If you need a name and logo, this is one we did for a Mom/Pop shop. They got into a huge argument before opening and ditched the whole thing, but they paid for this early on. Therefore, it's a free one. Email me if you want it and it's yours. The shop name can be easily changed. Either way..... best of luck!

    AmericanWay_zps4cda20b6.jpg
     
  9. Outlaw Man

    Outlaw Man Member

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    longknife is on the right track, from my experience. That's about the only way you can purchase in the volume that will get you good pricing. Places like Walmart and Bass Pro buy so much that they can almost set their own prices (not literally, but they've got a good thing going). I know there are a few shops around here that do that. Most of them have their own shows rather than going to SHOT, though.

    Otherwise, I'd recommend being patient with some of the other distributors/warehouses. Sometimes you can catch specials at really good prices, if you're quick enough to buy before they sell out.

    Ammo pricing is one of the reasons I don't offer ammo online. I have some to sell to local gun purchasers, but I can almost go to Walmart, mark it up, and still sell it for less than using my distributors and adding my preferred margin. But I couldn't do that to someone.
     
  10. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    "...Why would it be a problem?..." Hi. Few distributors will give a new business terms or credit until they have a history with the distributor. Using personal credit cards is a horrendously expensive way of running a business.
     
  11. NOMI WASP

    NOMI WASP member

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    I'm sorry to say but the days of me going to the LGS to buy ammo are over. When websites like Palmento State, SG Ammo, and SportsmanGuide beats local prices and it arrives at my door.

    Example, I just purchased Federal 5.56 xm193 for $5.99 a box with $8.50 flat rate shipping over the weekend. These same bullets at LGS are still hovering around $12 a box. Another example, I bought Tula .223 at Walmart for $6 a box and LGS charges $8.50

    Money is tight for everyone these days and unfortunitely I only use the LGS to purchase firearms and ammo when I can't wait for shipping times. My LGS never seems to have the best SD ammo either. They never have HST,Ranger, or Gold Dots. The industry has changed and unless your in a commie state, you're probably going to buy online.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2014
  12. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    I agree, we did have and use business credit cards which were paid as soon as the invoices arrived and I mean paid in full. You don't spend money you don't have. As to the accounts? Those distributors we did heavy business with generally offered us an account within about a year, Terms were always Net 30 or 45 days. You do not use a personal credit card and if you do, soon as the invoice hits, you pay the bill. You do not carry a balance forward. That amounts to suicide.

    As to the ammunition thing? You are not going to compete with the mega marts. We carried the basic stuff and tried to carry what the mega marts didn't carry.

    Our best money came from used gun sales. Find and buy estates as you can. You also will not generally compete with the mega marts on new common everyday guns. During the 90s I could buy a Mossberg 500 Defender Shotgun for if memory serves me right about $219 while Dicks, Walmart and other mega marts were selling them for $229. So go figure. Another good niche for us was reloading components, that paid well once the word got out. Gunsmithing was another good and profitable niche for us. You needed to do what the mega marts didn't do or offer. You aren't going to undersell the mega marts on cheap BS ammunition. Forget it. It's like NOMI WASP mentions:

    Fortunately during the 90s the Internet wasn't what it is today. Today, I would have a website running featuring the used stuff we had.

    Ron
     
  13. olafhardtB

    olafhardtB Member

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    For a long time the Walmarts around here had Mossberg 500's for 209. We got a 20 gauge youth for small critter control. An ounce of 5's does the trick.
     
  14. swopjan

    swopjan Member

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    Are you looking for something specific, like target ammo, self-defense ammo, cheap practice ammo...? As far as cheap practice ammo goes when I want to stock up I find commercial reloaders and compare their prices on different calibers.

    Sometimes the differences in prices for similar reloads is pretty significant. Of the reloaders I've checked out Freedom was pretty cheap for most pistol ammo, a local company (Parabellum Research) had the best prices on .45 ACP and .38 special, and another company whose name escapes me beat both of them by 20% on 5.56. If you're buying a case or more at a time it pays to shop around.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2014
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