“May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.”

"This report is maybe 12-years-old. Parliament buried it, and it stayed buried till River dug it up. This is what they feared she knew. And they were right to fear because there's a whole universe of folk who are gonna know it, too. They're gonna see it. Somebody has to speak for these people. You all got on this boat for different reasons, but you all come to the same place. So now I'm asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. Sure as I know anything I know this, they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, 10, they'll swing back to the belief that they can make people . . . better. And I do not hold to that. So no more running. I aim to misbehave." ~ Captain Malcom Reynolds

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Show report

Made it to my first local gun show in quite a while today - first one since last summer as a matter of fact. I'd noted the inventory issues with most of the online companies I deal with, and I've read the recent reports in various gunblogs & forums about what has been going on.

Well, I can only say, similar madness reflected here in Virginia. Fortunately, I was more there to windowshop than anything else.

Yes, ARs, AK-clones, Glocks etc. were all available at the show - not in huge numbers, but not empty racks. However - prices had bypassed the roof & were headed for orbit on a Saturn V trajectory. Anything possibly affected by a return of the '94 laws was similarly priced. Even saw a few of the new US made AUG clones and the PTR/HK91 clones - both priced again about double list.

Magazines - much of the same - anything hi-cap was at least 50% higher than what I saw it at last summer. A number of dealers even had signs up in various forms of "No haggling, stuff is hard to find, take what you can get."

P-mags - almost impossible to find, and priced double list. AK mags - lots of surplus beat up stuff for high prices, don't even ask about the Bulgarian good ones.

Even FAL mags STARTED at 15 dollars for used.

77-grain 5.56 - non-existant, as was cased 5.56 or 7.62x51 (unless you like Wolf steel-case, in which case I saw ONE vendor with some). Pretty much everything was in the 20 round boxes & not a lot of those.

"Tacti-cool" gear - plenty of cheap, imported nylon like at any show. The quality stuff was again almost impossible to find - although prices hadn't jumped like the other stuff. Saw a couple of things from Eagle, a few of the other good brands - but not even a lot of Blackhawk stuff around. On the other hand, the Chinese apparently are still sewing & exporting like no one's business...

The vendors I know well enough to talk to said it's mostly just troubles getting inventory in right now. A lot of people aren't even taking back orders right now, as they have no realistic idea when they might get filled.

Soooo - makes me glad I have what I already do, and am not desperately trying to stock up as some are. It will be interesting to see what the next few years hold for the industry as a whole. A lot of new companies formed in the past 8 years given the need for military and contractor gear and equipment - and I have a feeling that 5 years from now about 70% of those will have folded. Even with the law enforcement, recreational shooter & airsoft market crossover, I just don't think there is enough money going to be left going around to keep all of it open - so it will be survival of the fittest as it were.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Sean. I had no idea. Important, very disturbing report.