Friday, October 22, 2010

Gun Show this Weekend.

     I don't have a particular shopping agenda for this one. That makes me both more flexible and less focused, which may be a dangerous combination.
     I'll take the usual items: money, borelight, magnifier, faint glimmer of fiscal responsibility, etc... I'll try to remember my C&R bound book this time, in case there's some old fellow with a pristine 1903A3 for $300.
     And that's the delusion - that somehow the huge volume of product we see at a gunshow will lead to incredible bargains. Wrong. This ain't Walmart. This is a conglomerate of individuals and small businesses, all of whom are running on a thin margin, and hoping the volume of customers will work to their advantage.
     No, the fun of the gunshow is in the wonderful variety of pick-up-and-fondle firearms available. See something that interests you? Ask politely, then hold it, cradle it, feel the weight, the balance. Price almost fair? Negotiate a bit. Wave green cash. Be fair and reasonable yourself. If you're really serious, inspect.
     Be careful about breaking out the borelight and magnifying glass, though. That says, "fish on the hook" to the dealer. I have been known to do a thorough inspection, negotiate price, and end up saying no. This is where being a gentleman helps. I always explain my reasoning, and thank the vendor for the time he or she has taken with me. Most of the time the parting of ways is amicable.
     Sometimes, of course, I walk away with the gun. Six months later, I'm always happy with the gun, and if I even remember what it cost, I usually don't care.

     So we'll see how it goes. If all else fails, I'll pick up a can or two of ammo at the Georgia Arms booth (nice people, good ammo, decent prices).
     There are definitely worse ways to spend a Saturday.



  1. Rick,
    I find that I see more friends and family at gun shows than I would at a reunion. I don't usually miss a gun show, even if I'm in no market for anything at the time (who says you have to be in the market for something for an excuse to buy a good deal) :-).

    I just received my C&R license back in June, but I haven't used it yet. Where/what kind of record book are you using?

  2. Blue Steel,
    The best rundown on C&R FFL's I have found is here: .
    Toward the bottom of the page is a section on the Bound Book, and a link to a .pdf form to use for recording your transactions.
    I highly recommend that you read the whole article, and if you haven't already, send a copy of your FFL to your favorite retailers to take advantage of the dealer discount. I've saved a bunch of money at Brownell's, Midway and Numrich this way.
    I probably spent more that way too, but like you say, why pass up a good deal?


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