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  1. #1
    MNWild81883 is offline Junior Member
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    What to expect at a gun show?

    The reason I ask is I want to purchase a 9mm shortly. However, after reading these forums, I know I need to try several different types. If possible, I would like to try as many at the gun show instead of renting one $15 per time at the range.

    Since I have never been to a gun show, can anyone enlighten me as to what I can expect as far as trying out guns? The flyer says guns will be provided but user is responsible for ammo (obviously).

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    dosborn's Avatar
    dosborn is offline Member HGF Gold Member
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    I have never been to a gun show where you could shoot. Don't know that I would unless it was a private range and only for members.

    The show in my town is getting pretty big. Actually, there is one this weekend. There are lots of guns, ammo, relaoding supplies, knives, holsters, you name it. There are some "okay" deals but not a lot. Components (if you load) seem to be priced the best compared to everything else.

    Also, you can expect lots of old guys that feel they need to save their s for this event and release them throughout the facility.

    It's usually just overcrowded and overpriced.

  3. #3
    Todd is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by dosborn View Post
    It's usually just overcrowded and overpriced.
    Bingo.

    As I have stated plenty of times, my opinion is that gun show prices are generally overinflated and the vendors prey on the fact that people think because it's a show, the prices are good. For the most part once you factor admission and parking (if you have to pay for that), you can get a gun for the same price at your local shop, help your local economy, and develop a relationship with a shop in case there is a problem with the gun. Just be sure that if you are planning to buy, do your homework and know what you should expect to pay for a gun that you like before you go to the show.

  4. #4
    recoilguy's Avatar
    recoilguy is offline Senior Member
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    I agree with the last 2 guys......what show are you refering too that lets you shoot?

    I go to the shows to see if anyone has a new model or which store carries what I want. I rarely purchase anything at a show because it is either stuff I don't want or some real cool collecter stuff, I am not a collecter. Or as mentioned overpriced items for the guys who dont want to spend 15 bucks back at the store.

    RCG

  5. #5
    Bisley's Avatar
    Bisley is offline Senior Member
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    The only real advantage to a gun show is that you can see and handle a variety of guns. I've bought several guns at gun shows, before the heavy influx of new and inexperienced gun buyers distorted the 'market dynamics.'

    The last few times I went, the vendors did not even want to talk to anyone who actually knew something about what they were looking at. There were too many rookies there who would fall for any tale they told them, and either pay MSRP (or higher) for the good quality guns, or buy gangsta crap like Jennings, Lorcin, etc. I heard a lot of pure BS being spread, just walking the aisles.

    If you want to avoid getting screwed, do a lot of online research before you go. When you have narrowed what you are interested in down to three or four different guns, price them on a site like Bud's Gun Shop, add about $50 for tax, shipping, and transfer fees, and if somebody at the gun show offers you a deal close to that on something you really want, go for it.

    My personal experience has been that I will probably come nearer to getting a good deal from a FFL dealer, on a new gun, than from a small, non FFL booth, selling used guns. Often, the small non FFL vendors don't really know the value of what they have, and they always seem to err on the side of ridiculously high. When I bought my S&W 642CT from a FFL dealer, I paid less for it than the guy across the aisle was selling his used one for, without the laser grips - about $150 disparity.

  6. #6
    cougartex's Avatar
    cougartex is offline Senior Member
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    I agree with the above comments. The last couple of guns shows I attended very few new guns and the used guns were selling for new prices.

  7. #7
    MNWild81883 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by recoilguy View Post
    I agree with the last 2 guys......what show are you refering too that lets you shoot?

    I go to the shows to see if anyone has a new model or which store carries what I want. I rarely purchase anything at a show because it is either stuff I don't want or some real cool collecter stuff, I am not a collecter. Or as mentioned overpriced items for the guys who dont want to spend 15 bucks back at the store.

    RCG
    Bill's Gun Shop show. And, I am basing my comment off of what a few friends have stated. Maybe I misunderstood them. They have told me how you can shoot various weapons as long as you pay for the ammunition and I made the assumption that meant there will be a lot of different weapons.


    All in all, thanks to everyone for giving me a heads up. I think I'll just go to the range and rent something every few weeks.

  8. #8
    twomode is offline Member
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    Gun Shows. Flea markets with bullets. Lot's of flashy offshore junk, made to look like the real thing, a small amount of "antique" stuff, and cold hot dogs. Oh, and old guys from deep in the woods. Go, shoot some if you can (never heard of that) and have fun. Just don't invest in anything of substance because you'll pay the same or more and there's no relationship.

  9. #9
    recoilguy's Avatar
    recoilguy is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by MNWild81883 View Post
    Bill's Gun Shop show. And, I am basing my comment off of what a few friends have stated. Maybe I misunderstood them. They have told me how you can shoot various weapons as long as you pay for the ammunition and I made the assumption that meant there will be a lot of different weapons.


    All in all, thanks to everyone for giving me a heads up. I think I'll just go to the range and rent something every few weeks.

    I asked because I thought you might be talking about Bills show in 2 weeks. That is a shooters show not just a gun show and is set up so people come in and shoot on the range. the manufactures / vendors that support the show will have some of their weapons available for shooting for free if you buy ammo there. It is a way to get some shooting in. There are a lot of folks there who want to shoot. You can shoot a wide variety there, you just may not get to shot the make or the model you were hoping to. All in allBills is a good show with a lot of guys who know guns around, There is also alot of ....... less knowelgable ......younger.....thuglike .....guys that are there also. the thing is they buy guns too. If you are looking for the manufacturers that they have present, and have a while to kill because alot of guys want to do it. This shooters show is a pretty good one. I have purchased from Bills before.

    RCG

  10. #10
    MNWild81883 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by recoilguy View Post
    I agree with the last 2 guys......what show are you refering too that lets you shoot?

    I go to the shows to see if anyone has a new model or which store carries what I want. I rarely purchase anything at a show because it is either stuff I don't want or some real cool collecter stuff, I am not a collecter. Or as mentioned overpriced items for the guys who dont want to spend 15 bucks back at the store.

    RCG
    Quote Originally Posted by recoilguy View Post
    I asked because I thought you might be talking about Bills show in 2 weeks. That is a shooters show not just a gun show and is set up so people come in and shoot on the range. the manufactures / vendors that support the show will have some of their weapons available for shooting for free if you buy ammo there. It is a way to get some shooting in. There are a lot of folks there who want to shoot. You can shoot a wide variety there, you just may not get to shot the make or the model you were hoping to. All in allBills is a good show with a lot of guys who know guns around, There is also alot of ....... less knowelgable ......younger.....thuglike .....guys that are there also. the thing is they buy guns too. If you are looking for the manufacturers that they have present, and have a while to kill because alot of guys want to do it. This shooters show is a pretty good one. I have purchased from Bills before.

    RCG
    Thanks for clarifying that for me! If I am looking at 9mm, will there be several different types there to shoot or does each manufacturer only bring one gun? In other words, do you think I would be able to shoot a lot of different 9mm or will there just be one or two there to shoot?

    Also, is it pretty crowded and the gun shows some other were posters were referring to?

  11. #11
    recoilguy's Avatar
    recoilguy is offline Senior Member
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    There will be a few different guns to shoot. Some manufactures only bring one or 2 others bring a lot. There will be a lot of people there it is a well know well publisized show. Don't be intimidated, ask questions, if not from the Bills guys ask other shooters. Most of them are very knowlegable and will give you pretty good answer not just steer you to the gun they have left in stock.....Have fun my friend!

    RCG

  12. #12
    MNWild81883 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by recoilguy View Post
    There will be a few different guns to shoot. Some manufactures only bring one or 2 others bring a lot. There will be a lot of people there it is a well know well publisized show. Don't be intimidated, ask questions, if not from the Bills guys ask other shooters. Most of them are very knowlegable and will give you pretty good answer not just steer you to the gun they have left in stock.....Have fun my friend!

    RCG
    Thanks again for the advice. I really appreciate it!

  13. #13
    Rogelk is offline Banned
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    I've had good luck with Cabela's for new purchases. They've had decent sales on Berettas, CZs, Glocks, S&W. There's another great shop in Minnetonka I can refer you to if you PM me. Not sure if is kosher to promote business' on the forum. Even 'tho I'm not affiliated with any of them.

  14. #14
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    cruzthepug is offline Member
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    I have to agree with most all the other posts about gun prices at shows. I still try to go to most of the shows around my area but I normally find myself just glancing at the guns and usually have my eye out for parts and reloading supplies. My wife has even started going with me, seems to be a lot of jewerly sales at the shows I've been to lately.

  15. #15
    Slowalkintexan is offline Junior Member
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    Gun shows can be good....

    ....for used guns. If you know what you are looking for. I've scored some good deals on some obscure used guns that you would hardly ever find at a dealers. I've also seen some used guns that are priced way out of sight too.

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