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2020. First a run on guns, over 5 million new owners. Then a run on ammo to feed those new guns, people worried about Covid and an election. Now reloading supplies are drying up. Manufactures are not adding more production hardware.

All of these add up to tough times for the little guys, your local gun shop. If big, national chains have nothing to sell, imagine how hard it is for the little guy to get stock. They may have had a small windfall for a couple of months, but now there isn't much left to sell. Perhaps a free market system will prevail, but it bothers me that there is a trend to just "backorder" everything and hope for the best.

I'm stating the obvious, of course. Ya know, it appears as though there have been a higher number of new members to SG this year. It would be nice to see that as a graph.

I don't know what can be done so that my favorite local enabler will be hawking wares in 2021, but I know they have families and they have bills. And they are "my kind of people" .
 

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I do try to concentrate my spending with locally owned businesses. I remember when GE started outsourcing appliances to “hold cost down”. If I weigh any future cost savings from that move, against the decimation of my customer base by eliminating their jobs, I lose forever.
 
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Interesting. In my experience locally, the independently-owned shops have continued to maintain a better selection of guns and ammo than the big chain stores, which are totally cleaned out.
 

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The smaller shops that sell smaller total values of stock at retail get different prioritization from their distributors during shortages.

Most of the gun business is three tier. The manufacturers sell to the distributors as they manufacture goods. They do their best to schedule popular products through the factories based on available labor, materials, resources and tooling.

Some manufacturers (like Ruger) ship to distributors directly upon manufacture of products. They don't warehouse anything. Others will balance product availability by stocking some products.

Distributors are tasked with allocating and shipping products to national chains (Like Cabelas owner Bass Pro Shops) as well as individual retail stores. To manage the overwhelming demand while it outstrips supply, distributors manage allocation based on past volumes and experience with the stores. Some will only ship popular models by bundling less popular products that they have in stock.

For example, the store I help with could only get an order of popular guns from their distributor if they also took an expensive Les Baer M1911a1 tactical with the order. It sat in the store for several months unsold because of the price. (After lusting over it, I took it home after the store moved a few consignments for me).

This three tier distribution system from manufacturer to distributor to retail was first established in Europe. It can work well even at times of demand outstripping supply. It also helped build a number of villas on the Riviera.
 

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I refuse to buy from all those big chain stores. If I can't buy anything from my hometown local stores, or small independent stores, I prefer to do without unless it was an emergency purchase.
 

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That is exactly why prices go up as they should. Its not price gouging it's called business you have to sell things to make money and if you wont have things to sell you have to charge more for what you can sell..
 

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Not in my neck of the woods.

LGS in my area are thriving. Those that do have stock of guns, ammo, etc, are selling like crazy.

Unless you have exact examples, I'm not sure how "the big guys are killing the little guys" argument.

Those LGS that do significantly mark up prices on ammo and firearms are quickly ratted out since much of their business is word of mouth. How many times have you made a purchase based on something somebody posted on this forum or in your conversations with someone?

Like I said early on in this pandemic/election/antifa/militia/toiletpaperhoarding environment, those that do overcharge - I won't forget who they are. Nor will I forget the places that provide good service and a decent price.

That goes for both ONLINE and brick and mortar stores. You want $1000.00 for 500 rounds of ammo??? Yup, I've seen that in adds (maybe it was $959).
 
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LGS's often make more money with less cash tied up by selling consignment guns. A service that is usually not available at the big-box stores. I've sold or traded a bunch of guns in the past year thanks to my LGS and undoubtedly helped them keep a good saleable inventory too. And I wouldn't be surprised to see a lot of 'newbie's' guns on LGS shelves after the panic season passes. And as the big internet dealers limit ammo purchases, the LGS will keep their good customers reasonably supplied. Good reasons to keep going back to your LGS!
 

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Not in my neck of the woods.

LGS in my area are thriving. Those that do have stock of guns, ammo, etc, are selling like crazy.

Unless you have exact examples, I'm not sure how "the big guys are killing the little guys" argument.

Those LGS that do significantly mark up prices on ammo and firearms are quickly ratted out since much of their business is word of mouth. How many times have you made a purchase based on something somebody posted on this forum or in your conversations with someone?

Like I said early on in this pandemic/election/antifa/militia/toiletpaperhoarding environment, those that do overcharge - I won't forget who they are. Nor will I forget the places that provide good service and a decent price.

That goes for both ONLINE and brick and mortar stores. You want $1000.00 for 500 rounds of ammo??? Yup, I've seen that in adds (maybe it was $959).
I believe what he is saying is that there are a lot of smaller stores that cannot get product to sell because they are not high enough on the pecking order with any of their suppliers. These are the stores in danger of closing during the largest boom in industry history.
 

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Interesting. In my experience locally, the independently-owned shops have continued to maintain a better selection of guns and ammo than the big chain stores, which are totally cleaned out.
This has been my experience as well especially with ammo.
 

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For any business to survive it requires proper planning and budgeting. One LGS owner told me that by July they had sales equaling the entire last year. Usually a well stocked store they also had no inventory. They closed for 2 months to build their inventory back up and do some remodeling. They opened back up, and have had another years worth of sales since reopening. They'll survive because they don't spend every penny they make. They save so they can survive harder times.
 

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I believe what he is saying is that there are a lot of smaller stores that cannot get product to sell because they are not high enough on the pecking order with any of their suppliers. These are the stores in danger of closing during the largest boom in industry history.
Absolutely correct. Their normal wholesale connections are now selling direct to retail cutting them out. Operations in the past that were calling them begging them to buy the product won't even answer their calls these days.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
"I believe what he is saying is that there are a lot of smaller stores that cannot get product to sell because they are not high enough on the pecking order with any of their suppliers. These are the stores in danger of closing during the largest boom in industry history."

Thank you, phylers13 - that is exactly what I had in mind. I went to my local store about 2 months ago and the shelves were bare. A month ago, I went back and the owner was extremely pleased that he managed to get 12 new guns to sell. On such a small scale, with limited profit, I can't see how he'll keep his doors open. And this is exactly the kind of guy I want to support. I would hope others would, as well.
 

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I was on the Sig store last night.'\
Everything that I wanted Is supposed to be in stock
(2) P229 40 S&W barrels (2) P238 Parts Hits and
(1) P220 Parts Kit/ Planning on placing My order
Tomorrow. Wonder just how much wil lbe On Back
Order ???????
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I was on the Sig store last night.'\
Everything that I wanted Is supposed to be in stock
(2) P229 40 S&W barrels (2) P238 Parts Hits and
(1) P220 Parts Kit/ Planning on placing My order
Tomorrow. Wonder just how much wil lbe On Back
Order ???????
The reason I mentioned back orders was a thread here AMMO BACKORDERS OVER 1 BILLION DOLLARS FOR VISTA OUTDOORS , FIrearms Collector. That would appear to really hurt the little guys in the short term.

As to Sig, investing in an ammunition plant probably was a God send for them, even though several times I've tried to order brass recently and they have been sold out of 9mm, 380acp, 357sig and 40sw. The items you are ordering wouldn't have been stocked in my local gun store. I'd have ordered them online, too.

How many of you remember the famous "buy American" slogan of WallyWorld in the 80's? What happened as a result of it? I'm just floating this topic to have people think about the choice of buying local when possible. Or, I can support a conglomerate that tells their investors they have $1 BILLION in back orders. I guess even buying locally, the items are coming from the conglomerate, huh? Sigh
 

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I believe what he is saying is that there are a lot of smaller stores that cannot get product to sell because they are not high enough on the pecking order with any of their suppliers. These are the stores in danger of closing during the largest boom in industry history.
This describes my LGS; although IMO it is somewhat self-inflicted. When they were "master dealers" (or whatever it's called) for Sig, and then CZ, they got alot more product to sell and a lot more of what was most popular. Then, they didn't want to have to take other less-popular products as part of a minimum order. CZ for instance, won't just sell you 75s, P-01s and RAMIs; you have to also buy shotguns and bolt guns. This seemed to be kind of standard to me, if you were a dealer that wanted to advertise that you carried the complete "line".

However the owner is an old-school "minimum markup" kind of guy who is also somewhat oblivious to the Internet and computer technology. Prices were always at a maximum; sometimes $200 more than online. They have had exactly one sale in about 10 years (and that was on 9mm ammo). Guns will sit for a year or more with prices that are just too high. For the last couple of years, they've been no one's "master dealer"; just ordering product in small quantities from a distributor. They are defintely low in the pecking order. Last time I was in there, a P210 Target for full MSRP was the only handgun in the entire store that was not on consignment.

Unfortunately, they applied the same philosophy to ammo ordering; just buying whatever they got a good deal on and marking it up as high as possible. So, sometimes maybe you could buy 124gr 9mm; mostly not. Different brands, weights, etc would come and go at random. Now they are buying online from all the same places we are buying, as they have no steady relationship with a distributor for ammo.

The consignment market is the only thing happening there now (and transfers from online purchases). I brought three semi-autos and a revolver down a couple of months ago and they all sold in one week.
 

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The one I normally use isn't open for business at this time because of Covid-19. The others are on shorter hours and nobody can find ammo from what I hear. I haven't been to any of them in a while because I haven't bought any new guns recently. I have only traded on Armslist
 

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There's rumor that the Gum'int might shut down internet sales of ammo. That would force us to purchase ammo locally.
A smart LGS would keep ammo prices low; but have a purchase limit to keep y'all coming back. Like milk in the back of the grocery store it could generate traffic coming through to see all those consignment guns for sale. 😁
 

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There's rumor that the Gum'int might shut down internet sales of ammo.
This very idea, whether factual or rumor or enacted in January 2021 or December 2022, is going to continue propelling prices into the stratosphere. We scoff at $1000.00 for case of 9mm. That will look like a bargain if it is $1750/case in April 2021.

A trend now is sellers selling only 100 rounds of ammo on GB and they are getting bid on and are selling at times for a little more than $1.25 per round of 9mm (includes shipping).
 
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A couple of points:

1. This thread wouldn't even exist if there was no run on guns and ammo. This "run" is based on fear caused by radical politicians whom the population votes into office. Obviously democrats have stuck together better than the other parties during this election and, as usual, a lot of people don't vote. Nothing the average citizen could have done to prevent the China virus from coming over here.

2. No gun store, chain or LGS, is going to make it selling guns and ammo alone. There is little mark-up on either one. One LGS is about to go out of business while another LGS near where I live is thriving because they sell clothing and "nick nacks", and other things everyone either owns or will own. This store is owned by a woman that knows marketing and merchandising better than the other store that knows way more about guns than the woman. Draw your own conclusions. The thing they have in common is retail space and an indoor gun range. It's how you use the space.
 
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