Friday, December 21, 2012

Big! Christmas! Sale!

Every time Barry opens his mouth, another hundred people buy an AR-15 get in line to buy an AR-15.

I have manned the counter in a gun store during the passage of the original "Assault Weapon Ban" in '94 and its sunset in '04. I was slinging guns across the glass in the panicky run-up to Y2K, when all the computers died and we were reduced to a life of heavily-armed savagery in the ruins of our once-proud technological civilization, and I was selling guns on 9/11, when America flocked to buy guns just in case Osama bin Laden jumped out of the bushes in front of their house, and I have never seen anything like this.

December of '99 was close; when we closed the shop on New Year's Eve, there wasn't a round of service caliber ammunition or a single 12ga shotshell left in the store and the long-gun racks had a distinctly picked-over look, with not a square inch of black polymer in sight. But here I'm hearing tales of frenzied buying like you wouldn't believe.

And this is good.

There are a lot more first-timers out there than the other side would like to believe. I know a lot of people who got into the whole RKBA thing because of the '94 AWB; who ran out and bought a scary-looking gun simply because they didn't like being told they wouldn't be able to later.

Ask around your friends at the gun shop or the shooting range; ask them how many got into this because of '94. All this aggressive ban talk by the other team is just sowing dragon's teeth...

EDIT: Good thing I ordered from BCM when I did; they are absolutely sold out of AR uppers. Period. Still need a BCG...

45 comments:

Jim said...

I think this partially explains the left's panic to fast-track a new gun-control bill. They recognize the need to act in at time of passion, before the nation regains any part of it's cognitive ability.

I also catch myself wondering if there's a way to track the sales flow of six-inch PVC sewer pipe, caps, glue, and bags of dessicant.

Earl said...

You think that people that know nothing about assault rifles would buy one of those terrible dangerous things? How would they know what kind of bullet to put inside the clip??? it is good there is a Youtube?

leBolide said...

Even the mighty CDNN's website has been replaced with a text blub saying, "WE'RE TOO BUSY CALL BACK IN A FEW DAYS!!"

Tam said...

leBolide,

I ordered a BCG from CDNN on Monday and haven't heard "boo!"

I was not at all surprised to see the message this AM.

SJ said...

I told myself at the beginning of December that I wanted to get a 10/22, and start customizing it for Appleseed-style shooting.

Bull barrel, good stock with sling mounts, trigger job, scope mounts, scope.

Then I said, I can start getting parts over Christmas break.

That was a good idea.

Yossi said...

My brother works for an online seller of accessories, he told me he sold 40k P-Mags from Monday to Wednesday.

Frank W. James said...

Good time to get rid of the uninteresting and undesirable safe queens.

I've sold more guns in the past few days than I have in the past 3 years!

Run 'em all through an FFL shop in Lafayette and the guy yesterday when he paid me in cash asked "What else you got you want to get rid of?"...

All The Best,
Frank W. James

Tam said...

Frank,

Sadly, I sold all the guns that move quickly during these things over the last few panics.

Until I picked up that brace of M&P 9s, I didn't even own any more double-stack pistols and I was down to one (complete) AR. What a time to be more-or-less out of the "flat-black people-popper" market...

Howscome there's never a panicky, inflationary rush on top-break Smiths? ;)

NAVIGATOR said...

LIGHT A CANDLE TO SANTA BARBRA PATRONESS
OF GOOD ORDNANCE PERSONS FOR A DEAL ON YOUR BREAK TOP SMITH AND A BIGGER CANDLE
FOR HER TO LOOSE A FEW THUNDERBOLTS AT THE POLITICIANS WHO INTEND ON DESTROYING OUR RIGHTS AS WELL AS THE REPUBLIC

HAPPY WINTER!

ErnestThing said...

Run on top-break smiths? Just wait for the ban after this one doesn't work.

Everyone in our shop has been downplaying the idea of a ban just because we're too honest, but that doesn't stop new buyers from picking them up. Proving once again, if you want an American to do something, tell them they're not allowed.

We're lucky enough to have a good relationship with Accurate Tool here in Lexington, so we're taking orders through the dearth.

perlhaqr said...

I have been thinking about moving one of my spare AKs. I mean, worst case scenario, I would still have one. And someone else who probably didn't buy hers just to have something to turn into the feds would have one too.

Angus McThag said...

" Proving once again, if you want an American to do something, tell them they're not allowed."

Ban education in STEM!

Ban spending less than you make!

Desertrat said...

US Reps are up for re-election in two years. As mad as many are about the gun-control yap-yap, and as upset as people are about the economy, votes will be remembered much longer than is usual.

Joe Huffman said...

Count me as one of those people that didn't own a gun until Bill Clinton was elected and the writing on the wall about the coming gun bans was visible.

Boomershoot is because of Diane Feinstein.

Politicians keep cranking it down so I keep cranking it up.

Anonymous said...

Do I have to pay capital gains on my stash of PMAGS?

Gerry

treefroggy said...

I stopped into my local Dealer of Death yesterday and thought he had been robbed. No auto-loaders of ANY type ; rifle, shotty or hand-gun. Ammo shelves down by half, except for the 22 LR I wanted.

JohninMd.(help?!) said...

George Hill over at MadOgre works at Basin sports in Vernal, Utah. posted last nite he's never seen it like this. A BIG stock of ARs, gone. NO .223/5.56 left except hi-zoot varmint 20rnd. boxes. Maybe the Industry should give Obama a salesman of the decade award......

Firehand said...

Went to the local range/store I usually shoot at yesterday(lanes very busy, but moving nicely), and after taking care of what I'd come for I wandered over to the sales side.

Which involved getting past the several-people-deep lines in front of all three guys doing NICS paperwork for buyers.

There were three AK variants left on a rack. AR variants? None. New or used. Was told NO magazines left, and they were out of 5.56/223 ammo. There were lots of bolt and semi-auto traditional-looking hunting and target rifles, lots of shotguns, but EBRs were either gone or about to disappear. And handguns on the shelves were starting to thin out a lot.

Also, at the reloading counter their Federal rep was there delivering some stuff and spoke a minute with him; he said he thinks the ammo situation is likely to look- at least- like a few years back, maybe worse so far as "I can't find any!" As in a group had asked him "If we make this big order and pay up front, can you be sure of delivery within six months?" "No." HUGE backorders on everything, including .22.

Tam said...

Firehand,

"Also, at the reloading counter their Federal rep was there delivering some stuff and spoke a minute with him; he said he thinks the ammo situation is likely to look- at least- like a few years back, maybe worse so far as "I can't find any!" As in a group had asked him "If we make this big order and pay up front, can you be sure of delivery within six months?" "No." HUGE backorders on everything, including .22."

I learned my lesson in '08.

At the pace of .22 ammo consumption for regular range practice, I keep about a four- or five-visit stash set back in a corner for a rainy day, so that even if I run my "regular-use" ammo can dry, I can crack into reserves and have another month, month-and-a-half before I need to start worrying about getting into the Velocitors and Stingers and SSS and suchlike.

Critter said...

Anybody want to buy a Browning A Bolt? No?

rickn8or said...

Gun sales are booming, so of course one of the Memphis city councilman "recommended" (demanded)that this weekend's gun/knife show be cancelled "out of respect for Sandy Hook victims/weekend before CHRISTMAS!!" (Talk about your conflicted Liberal.) He was promptly told to "shaddup, these things are scheduled a year in advance, ever heard of breach-of-contract?"

One good thing about the recent sales surge and associated price gouging is that whenever restrictions/confiscation is mentioned by Our Betters, the new purchasers are going to look at their sales receipts and say "Aw, HELL no!" (Southern Men flinch at this phrase when uttered by Southern Ladies. Or soon learn to.)

Myself, I'm thinking (betting) that in the coming currency collapse, the new medium of exchange will be double-shot bottles of Jack, with change given in .22LR.

Ed Foster said...

Our Stag Arms division is ticked because it has to work 12 hour shifts Saturday and Sunday to get Monday and Tuesday off. They're doing a 4,000 rifle push, and that still leaves them 7,000 units behind.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Wonder how many of those ARs will be hitting the Gun Shows this August when Congress goes home for their Vacation w/o any new Gun Control Legislation being passed?

"But I paid $1,500 for this Bushmaster last Xmas! Why are you only offering me $500!?"

Of course, if the Anointed One issues Unconstitutional Executive Edicts since any Legislation won't make it to the House Floor, then all bets are off.

WindRider said...

I topped off my magazine requirements on Nov. 14th, figured this was coming and wanted to avoid the crunch.

People, this buying frenzy says something very important: These new buyers have absolutely no intention of turning these firearms over to the government!

Now, who among Tam's vast readership has some sort of credible presence on a lefty blog site? (pseudonyms work just fine) How about posting a loud complaint accusing Obama of being in bed with the gun manufacturers due to this huge boost in their sales? Pass it on.

Kristophr said...

I ordered a .308 AR lower last weekend, tried to call them with my FFL's number and address, and now Fulton Armory has their "closed for the holidays" sign out.

Something tells me their stock has been slurped up.

Jenny said...

"How about posting a loud complaint accusing Obama of being in bed with the gun manufacturers due to this huge boost in their sales?"

Frankly, I think a better tack would be pushing the Australia turn-em-in model. The old Feinstain/Schumer gang have always been to clever for that, but now that it's on the table in Slate and Twitter it's worth pushing on the left side.

Best case, it's a poison pill that gives the fence sitters in the House a reason to turn it down.

Worst case, it means everyone with an EBR gets the "turn it in now" letter at the same time, instead of spread out over thirty years, each at the end of our candle when we're too old or frustrated to do the paperwork and can't legally transfer them to anyone.


staghounds said...

Selling my mini 14s next week.

1 With A Bullet said...

Y2K,'94, '04, '08, '12. I remember all those. I watched the vote on Clinton's AWB live on C-band satellite and yelled at the TV when after the clock ran out they left the vote open in order to twist enough arms to change the loss to a win. I also remember the primer and powder shortages when taggants and forced expiration dates were proposed. For everyone that bought something for fear of losing their rights, I wish they would all join the NRA (warts and all) to protect them. And SAF too.

Anonymous said...

Yup, here in good ole K-town, I just ran the circuit of local gun stores and, it is beyond belief. ARs, AKs and associated mags are all gone. And, the mags went at super inflated prices [$30 each at one place]. Ammo rationing has started with two boxes per peep per day. One store has an AR pistol on the shelf and, is currently NOT for sale but will be when the price is right.

I truly enjoy my current position if you know what I mean!

Murphy's Law said...

I'm suspecting that much of what disappeared from sellers' shelves was just snagged up by greedy re-sellers and we'll see much of it for sale again in the coming days, still in it's boxes and wrappers, only at insane prices.

Geodkyt said...

Tam said...

Howscome there's never a panicky, inflationary rush on top-break Smiths? ;)

Well, if they had 24/7 cable news/internet and a mass school shooting in 1868, maybe. . . ;-P

Firehand said...

Seen this yet?
http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_1_5/1405403____________Brownells_____please__I_jest_I_jest__don_t_beat_me_.html&page=1#i37260057

"To shed some more light on the magazine situation at present, it really has been unprecedented in the last 5 days. (Edit - Sorry guys, meant 72 hour period) we sold the "average demand" equivalent of about 3 1/2 years worth of PMAGS, and and an even greater amount of our Brownells magazines. We're working like crazy to get these orders to you as quickly as possible."

Firehand said...

Son stopped by a Wally World this morning; the only .22 ammo left on the shelves was shorts. And very short on everything else(that there was any left of)

Tpa Gunslinger said...

I ordered 2 lowers that came in November 9th. (2 days after election day) I need three more parts including a BCG for the one the other will be a dedicated 22lr.
The writing was on the wall. With the timing and all, it's almost like it was all planned to go down like this.

Matthew said...

@ Jenny

Yep. Make them go big by pushing their own extremists to -insist- on no grandfathering and confiscation. Their loons already are calling to criminalize possession, point out to the press that the anti-gunners in Congress haven't mentioned that yet and ask why.

Whatever they propose that has a chance of passing, point out it is a half-measure, like the original AWB. Make it clear a semi-auto is a semi-auto, banning based on looks is meaningless.

Give the FUDD's some skin in the game and educate non-gun folks what the difference between semi- and full auto really is, blow that big lie out of the water.

Get the Code Pink mouth-foamers and dancing vaginas out in front of the press hounding Pelosi, Schumer, Lautenberg, et al. to -really- do something.

Associate extreme gun control with the crazies so the general public will roll their eyes when it is mentioned. Make it akin to Occupy or trutherism or birtherism in the public mind by association.

Force the really dangerous and sneaky politicians to either distance themselves or expose themselves as wanting more than just "reasonable" measures.

Get all the cards on the table and see what the American public thinks.

Tam said...

Matthew,

"Get the Code Pink mouth-foamers and dancing vaginas..."

You never struck me as the kind of person who was opposed to vaginas (Not That There's Anything Wrong With That.)

Matthew said...

=)

Only the big foam ones dancing on the teevee, and not really "opposed" to them at that.

If a political opponent of mine wants to turn off the general public by acting like a loony I'm going to encourage them, not stop them. I'm not sure they'd actually show up to a gun protest, unless we can work a "war on women" angle in there for them, but they're magic for press coverage.

Plus, I like to type "dancing vaginas."

rickn8or said...

Matthew, you left out "high-powered sniper rifles that can take down an airliner from more that a MILE away!!1!"

But other than that, yeah, get all the crazies out in the open. And remember the best part is that it's EMOTION, not truth and logic that works on these people.

Chas Clifton said...

If only someone could tell us if these are mainly the owners of twenty guns buying number twenty-one, or really first-time buyers deciding that now is the time.

Brigid said...

Brigid Jr, was adopted by a family from Littleton. She was in high school in the late 90's. I promised not to contact them until she turned 18 though I knew exactly where she was. That was a particular day of hell for me.

She shoots, she has pistols and AR's and she's quite ready to defend. She is indeed my girl.

Justthisguy said...

Oh, yeah. It was the Crime of Bill, back in the year 94 of the previous century, which persuaded me to arm myself. Now or never, I thought.

Speaking of Bill: Had he married a Southern Gal, he most prolly would not have lived long enough to run for President. A Southern Gal would have settled his hash soon after his first "flirtation." And then she would have loaded another mag and emptied it into him just to make sure, as a famous Scotsman said.

Alas, Bill married an Illinois Methodist, which doesn't differ very much from an Illinois Nazi.

I hate Illinois Nazis.

Tam said...

Chas Clifton,

"If only someone could tell us if these are mainly the owners of twenty guns buying number twenty-one, or really first-time buyers deciding that now is the time."

Some of both.

It's not a binary universe, despite what you might read on National Review Online or the Huffington Post. ;)

Chas Clifton said...

Tam,

"It's not a binary universe, despite what you might read on National Review Online or the Huffington Post. ;)"

True, I just wondered which group was in the majority.

Tam said...

Chas,

Based on previous runs, I'd guess every fourth or fifth buyer is either:

1) A total gun n00b, or

2) May have a shotgun or .22 in the closet or a revolver in the sock drawer, but has never before really considered themselves a "gun owner" except in the most abstract sense and has also never considered buying a Scary-Looking Black Gun.

Anonymous said...

The 1996 "gun buy back" (gun theft) of sem autos in Australia had a permanent effect on me. I was someone who was interested in politics, weighed up the issues and voted for the party that I thought would be best for Australia.

After 1996 I realised how important my guns were to me not just because they were a useful tool or because they were given to me by much beloved, now departed relatives.

I realised that legal gun ownsership was a symbol of trust between citizens and the government and between citizens themselves. I now vote purely on the basis of firearms policy and past performance, nothing else.

mike in oz