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#1784251 - 07/13/21 11:54 PM Are gun shows worth it?
phydeaux Offline
Single barrel

Registered: 10/18/20
Posts: 40
Loc: Virginia
City or County: Chesterfield
Hello,

I was curious to get some opinions about gun shows in general & the Richmond one in particular. Are they worth it? Are the prices on firearms/ammo higher than in stores? I've read that sometimes vendors lower prices towards the end of shows so they don't have to pack up as much -- is that accurate?

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#1784252 - 07/13/21 11:59 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
Luke9675 Offline
Bolt action

Registered: 04/21/20
Posts: 147
Loc: Virginia
City or County: Chesterfield
I have found, for the most part, just about everything is way overpriced or just at retail. Very few deals are to be had. Most of these guys going to the shows travel every week so only a few will discount in the last few hours. For the $10 or so for several hours of walking around, seeing some awesome weapons, maybe meeting some folks I think it is worth it. If you are going there expecting to be overwhelmed with amazing deals, you will be disappointed.

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#1784644 - 07/15/21 11:04 AM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: Luke9675]
ktyhawk Offline
General Nuisance

Registered: 11/20/08
Posts: 3358
Loc: New Kent
City or County: New Kent County
I have bought two guns recently at the RVA shows. After searching this site and finding used guns at retail plus prices, I went and bought what I wanted at the gun shows for cheaper, even after the price of admission. As the gun show you don't have to go find a seperate FFL and drive to/from that location. People here on this site are asking insane prices for used guns. Go to the show and buy it brand new for less. Either way, you still have to go to an FFL and it goes on a 4473. Might as well do it as cheaply as you can.

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#1784899 - 07/15/21 11:56 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
phydeaux Offline
Single barrel

Registered: 10/18/20
Posts: 40
Loc: Virginia
City or County: Chesterfield
Interesting to hear your experiences - thank you. For me personally, I'm looking for different brands of ammo to try out in my guns.

For guns, I've been looking at the Springfield XDM Elite compact to carry. I've been monitoring GB auctions for quite a while and have frequently seen that gun sell in the mid-upper $400's (before S&H, fees, etc). PSA had this model listed for $550 and it took at least a week before they sold out of it. I was hoping shows might be competitive.

Supply does seem to be improving everywhere, so I could just wait and see if prices drop.

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#1785448 - 07/17/21 05:32 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
javguy Offline
Pea shooter

Registered: 07/01/19
Posts: 1
Loc: WV
City or County: Falling Waters
The better ones are where you have individuals selling their personal stuff, not dealers. They typically paid less for it a long time ago and don't need to charge as much to still make a profit.
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#1786622 - 07/21/21 08:39 AM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
GE_Minigun Offline
Bolt action

Registered: 12/22/15
Posts: 193
Loc: Virginia, USA
City or County: Winchester
I’m in my 50’s and I feel sorry for the younger guys that talk about how “great” gun shows are…I can tell you with 100% certainty the days of great gun shows are GONE. You rarely saw MSRP pricing, no beanie babies, jerky, tools (other than gun related), tasers, jewelry, etc., just guns and ammo at fair prices and in some cases a guy just “needed the money”. Today one can buy on-line (with some effort) and get anything they want for $50 cheaper including shipping and transfer fees (provided your dealer is not a nut case in what he charges); plus, you do not have to deal with people that do not know the meaning of water nor soap or even deodorant; add on to that the travel time, entrance fees and in some cases parking fee. My father and I along with two other guys used to go to shows every weekend within 4.5 hours of home, now I would not go across the street to one. It is a shame they have come to what they are, but I guess it is the “life cycle” of them…hopefully they turn around.
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#1787432 - 07/23/21 06:40 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
graybeard Offline
Marksman

Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 219
Loc: Va
City or County: Fauquier
I truly miss the shows at Hugo's way back when. Those shows always had the best mix of new and old guns, bought a ton of firearms from those shows. Good times have to end sometime.
Haven't been to a show for a while now, to me its just a lot of dealers selling the same stuff for a few dollars difference from each other. When I retire, I plan to give the shows in the state another try, to see if they have better'd the selection, or more of samo samo. Could always go and re-supply my stash of hot sauce and beef jerky..beanie babies make awesome targets....
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#1787673 - 07/24/21 02:20 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: graybeard]
ktyhawk Offline
General Nuisance

Registered: 11/20/08
Posts: 3358
Loc: New Kent
City or County: New Kent County
Originally Posted By: graybeard
I truly miss the shows at Hugo's way back when.


Heck... I grew up going to Hugo's to skate on Friday nights way back when.

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#1787969 - 07/25/21 03:23 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: javguy]
rromeo Offline
Bullseye

Registered: 07/06/10
Posts: 1624
Loc: VA
City or County: Pulaski
Originally Posted By: javguy
The better ones are where you have individuals selling their personal stuff, not dealers. They typically paid less for it a long time ago and don't need to charge as much to still make a profit.

Most of the time those guys are the most expensive.
_________________________
Never initiate force against another. But should someone do violence to you, retaliate without hesitation, without reservation, without quarter, until you are sure that he will never wish to harm - or never be capable of harming - you or yours again.

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#1789224 - 07/29/21 11:23 AM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
Blueray **SCAMMER BANNED** Offline
Pea shooter

Registered: 06/25/21
Posts: 11
Loc: Virginia
City or County: Buchanan County
Aside from paying for entry to the show... It's just another outlet to buy from; know what you're shopping for and the comparable market rate at other suppliers. Armed with google on your phone... You'll know what a good deal is. Be an informed shopper with the info at your fingertips to bolster your negotiating position.

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#1789471 - 07/30/21 07:21 AM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: GE_Minigun]
MHighway Offline
Single barrel

Registered: 06/10/19
Posts: 47
Loc: Virginia
City or County: VA Beach
Man GE Minigun you nailed it, here in Va Beach the SGK show is packed full of vendors selling crap not even related to firearms. Me and buddy counted all the vendors last time and more than 50% were non-firearms related crap. If I want craft soap and a bracelet I’ll go to arts and craft fair.


Edited by MHighway (07/30/21 07:22 AM)
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#1793766 - 08/12/21 10:01 AM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
GE_Minigun Offline
Bolt action

Registered: 12/22/15
Posts: 193
Loc: Virginia, USA
City or County: Winchester
I’m in Winchester…years back at the old Armory…maybe 200 tables and I’m being generous with that number…was an AMAZING show…AMAZING, for such a small show they covered everything from antique to machine guns. You needed a part 90% or better chance it was there and if it wasn’t someone would give you the name and number of a guy that had it. Couldn’t beat the prices (no internet then) and everyone wanted your business…found a gun for “X” amount the guy beside him would offer it for less and if you were lucky another guy would offer even less, true “bidding” war. I truly miss that show, they had two a year on same weekend as the Lions held their pancake day, we’d go get breakfast then to the show…couple other shows were almost as good that have folded up shop. Again what’s out there now is nothing compared to “yesterday”…I want to get to Tulsa for their show, but something always comes up.
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#1798804 - 08/27/21 10:02 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
phydeaux Offline
Single barrel

Registered: 10/18/20
Posts: 40
Loc: Virginia
City or County: Chesterfield
I appreciate all the responses. I may go check out the Richmond show this weekend.

Do vendors sell suppressors at the show -- or at least have them on display and let you fill out the paperwork/pay the tax?

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#1801530 - 09/05/21 07:47 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
rromeo Offline
Bullseye

Registered: 07/06/10
Posts: 1624
Loc: VA
City or County: Pulaski
After going to Hillsville, it's not what it was 5 years ago. The VFW is still full, but there were about half as many gun dealers as there used to be. Of course Gun Alley is gone, after one of the dealers called the ATF on them. Karma sucks, because that jackhole got shut down himself. The dealers inside have decent ammo prices, considering availability. The scalpers outside are ridiculous as expected. Example, 22 ammo going for $4-5 for 50 rounds inside is $10-15 outside. Some guys had primers for $20-30 for 100. know for a fact that some of the outside guys were buying it inside to sell for themselves.
_________________________
Never initiate force against another. But should someone do violence to you, retaliate without hesitation, without reservation, without quarter, until you are sure that he will never wish to harm - or never be capable of harming - you or yours again.

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#1803155 - 09/10/21 06:02 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
Yankee Bill Offline
Pea shooter

Registered: 05/02/12
Posts: 19
Loc: VA.
City or County: Tidewater
They certainly used to be worth it 20 - 30 years ago when they primarily sold only REAL guns & ammo and catered more to hunters, Sportsmen & comptetive target shooters. Now-a-days however, over half the tables are hawking junk that isn't even remotely related to guns. And probably 2/3 or more of the remaining tables there are catering to the "Black Gun" G.I. Joe / Rambo wanna-bee's crowd, most of whom never had the spine to actually even join or serve in the Military, it seems! Just my $.02 Others MMV.


Edited by Yankee Bill (09/10/21 06:04 PM)

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#1803158 - 09/10/21 06:22 PM Re: Are gun shows worth it? [Re: phydeaux]
rromeo Offline
Bullseye

Registered: 07/06/10
Posts: 1624
Loc: VA
City or County: Pulaski
True, but that's not the fault of the gun show promoters. A lot of the dealers that used to go now use Gunbroker instead of traveling. The people that sold privately either don't have anything left, or have been hassled by the ATF. I know of a few guys that have gotten FFLs and opened stores because of it. I still see them at some shows.
The promoters now have to fill those empty tables with something. The coin guys are usually there because tables at gun shows are generally much cheaper than at coin shows.
_________________________
Never initiate force against another. But should someone do violence to you, retaliate without hesitation, without reservation, without quarter, until you are sure that he will never wish to harm - or never be capable of harming - you or yours again.

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