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Old February 12, 2010, 09:23 PM   #1
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South Florida fairgrounds Gun Show - Thoughts? Also, questions on buying online?

Hey guys,

There's a gun show tomorrow local to me at the south Florida fairgrounds. I'm sure many of you have gone to gun shows.

What are your thoughts on them? Am I wasting my time? Am I really going to find something at a better deal then in stores? I'm looking at a few handguns, Ruger P95, Keltec PF9, Taurus PT 111, just to name a couple. I found a brand new Ruger P95 at my local shooting center for $350. Do you guys think I'll find a better price?

Also, I've been looking around through GunBroker and GunsAmerica, and have found a few, what seems to be, good deals. Should I consider purchasing online to save a few bucks, or just get a new gun at the local shop?

How does buying a gun online work? They ship it to my local FFL dealer, right? How long does that typicall take? Once the gun arrives at the FFL dealer, will they charge me a fee for that service? I think I saw something about my local dealer charing $30 plus $5 for NICS. What is NICS?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm just very new to all of this.

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Old February 12, 2010, 10:33 PM   #2
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Adrian, I think it's pretty rare to find gun deals at gun shows. This is a generalization, but your best value may be a hot dog, fried and soda for $5. Usually the admission fee is about $8, so that's a downer too. Typically, the shows I attend are somewhat fun to check out, and that's about it.
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Old February 12, 2010, 10:40 PM   #3
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I have bought at gun shows but because it was something I was looking for ... not because it was a bargain. The folks selling there are very savvy.

On-line. I have bought several firearms on-line with only one that was somewhat disappointing. But, adding shipping, FFL fees, .... there were few bargains there. A couple of good deals and some nice stuff. Luck!
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Old February 12, 2010, 11:13 PM   #4
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I'll be going.

l like this gun show and go often. My friend bought a Keltec PF9 there. You need your CC permit or else you'll need to wait and pick up your weapon. Know your prices and stick to it. Most things are overpriced and you'll need to haggle. IMHO, it's best to go late Sunday before they pack-up. A lot of stuff is already sold but I feel they more ready to deal before they leave. A couple of dealers come from Orlando area and I think provide good prices. I get ammo, reloads.

Have fun and good luck!
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Old February 12, 2010, 11:18 PM   #5
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If you want the best value for your money, my advice is to take a saturday and hit every local gunshop you can. While you may pay less for the actual gun that you buy off the internet, you have to pay for shipping, insurance, transfer fees. Buy the time you add it all together, you've spent almost as much, if not more, than if you had picked it up at a mom & pop gun shop.

Handle everything you can and compare prices....thats what the shows are about.
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Old February 12, 2010, 11:24 PM   #6
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Awesome. Thanks for the tips guys. I think I may go some time saturday before everything gets sold. How long will I have to wait to pick up my firearm of choice?
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Old February 13, 2010, 04:39 AM   #7
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Hey Adrian...

There are a couple of smaller show's in Ft Lauderdale. As I said they are much smaller than the War memorial, and fairground shows. But I always get great deals. PM me if your interested in the details.
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Old February 13, 2010, 06:56 AM   #8
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Most of the gun show "bargains" are buying from other people at the show, not necessarily vendors. It is best to know exactly what you're looking for and what you're willing to pay. If you can resist the urge to buy now, its a good place to see alot of different makes and models to compare, hands on. I've bought and sold online with good results. You need to find a local dealer or gunsmith who will transfer for you without charging more than $20 or so, and support him with other purchases or work. Gun shows are a great place to get educated, but arm yourself with plenty of info, and buyer beware.
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Old February 13, 2010, 07:26 AM   #9
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Shows can be fun to attend, I used to go for oddities and Curios...
Never bought Modern at a show, but have bought Area Gun Dealer after show specials in house deals.
"if" the price was right...

If you buy on the internet....You'll have the afor mentioned Shipping, DROS or FFL fee & BG check.
One local dealer, charges $100 FFL receiver fee ( consequently he will never see my business ) most charge $25 -30 + & $4 -8 for your Background check.

Best case , take Imp's advise..visit your local small shops, take cash
and haggle a bit, one shops price VS anothers.

Check Bass Pro in Orlando, sometime's they have sales ( S&W ,Ruger's, Glocks, )
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Old February 13, 2010, 07:48 AM   #10
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I tend to agree with IMP. I look at gun shows and the internet and gather information on the total price. When I go to my local gun shop I am better informed as to the fair market value. I have done this the last 3 guns I bought.
My local gun shop has always been within a few dollars of the other prices.
In addition my local gun shop has a range and also does repair and custom work.
Over time the owner of the shop and his employees have become trusted friends. When I have questions or want an oppion I know I can turn to them for no BS answers.
Finally my purchases from my local shop (even if it is a few more dollars than the internet) helps insure the shop will be there next week if I need them.

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Old February 13, 2010, 09:45 AM   #11
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I go to gun shows these days as an outing, not with a plan to purchase. It is a good place to handle a lot of different weapons if you are looking for a new one. Almost without fail I have found new weapons and ammo to be cheaper in local gun stores than at the shows. Buying from local stores supports my local economy and gives me somewhere to return to if there is a problem. The only gun show deals I have found in the last ten years are from individual sellers in the parking lot.
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Old February 13, 2010, 09:02 PM   #12
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I have had better on used guns at gun shops ... and pawn shops.
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Old February 13, 2010, 09:05 PM   #13
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ive gotten five or six handguns online now... always works good for me... better prices than around here..they ship it to a shop here with an FFL.. then it costs 25 bucks for them to transfer it to me.... still ends up being cheaper so far.
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Old February 14, 2010, 07:53 AM   #14
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This show this weekend is not good at all IMO. I go to almost everyone just to get out of the house but haven't bought a gun at one since before the scare when you could get an AK for $350-$400.
There is a lot of open vendor spaces also at this one which is rare. You'll also have an opportunity to buy arts and crafts :barf:
I buy, sell and trade most everything from guys online at floridashootersnetwork and flaguns.
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Old February 14, 2010, 09:47 AM   #15
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Years ago, gun shows used to have some bargains and deals. I don't find them to be especially a good deal anymore, unless you get extremely lucky. There's always the impulse buy which, of course, I think the dealers are counting on but, for the most part, one is better off going to a gun show with a particular mission in mind and to know the price/value of a gun when you go in the door, and then shop the dealers at the show for the best buy.

I have struck up a relationship with a particular ammo dealer that is always at the South Florida Fairgrounds show and also the Ft. Lauderdale show. I buy ammo in quantity from him for my gun club and it is one of the better buys I have come across.

Last year I was at the SF Fairgrounds show just before closing on a Sunday and the last table on the last isle had a S&W 1911SC which was a beauty. It was marked "Show Special - $995". The gun was NIB but I also knew that the 1911SC was not in production any longer as it had been changed to the 1911PD. To make a long story short, after some negotiation I took it home for $550 out the door. Probably my best gun show score to date.

So Adrian, the best way to shop is to do your homework and know what you want and research all the prices from everywhere. Don't accept the first price a dealer gives you. If you find something on Gun Broker, factor in the cost of shipping and the FFL fees. Also remember, unless you buy from a Florida Dealer, you will be saving the Sales Tax. An educated consumer is a smart consumer.

I hope you really enjoy your new hobby/sport and explore all the venues which will lead to making lots of new friends and shooting buddies. Good luck.
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Old February 14, 2010, 10:37 AM   #16
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Hit the mother load!!!!

While headed to the gunshow yesterday I saw dick's Dick's sporting store on the right a little before the fairgrounds (headed west) and pulled in. They where loaded with ammo. AND they had everything .22 to .44 mag. Also had a few cal's in Remington's UMC 250 count. I paid $20 for .45 auto (50) and $45 for .380 (100) expensive I know, Remington green box.

The Florida Gun Exchange had some very good prices, labeled no less. A Colt Delta Elite for $829 NIB. Call me stupid but that seems like a very good deal. And not "like" NIB. It is NIB. Man I wanted that gun.
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Old February 14, 2010, 05:53 PM   #17
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They had a LOT of good prices there. I was very impressed with it. I did quite a bit of research before going this weekend as far as prices go, and Florida Gun Exchange was just below everyone else. They had a Ruger P95 that I almost bought from them at $300. That was mighty tempting. But I went with a Hi Point C9 and then the next show, I'll hopefully be picking up a Bersa Thunder UC 9mm.. unless I find something better online of course after FFL fee's and shipping is included. Also bought 500 rounds of 9mm for $141. I thought that was pretty damn good.
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Old February 15, 2010, 09:10 AM   #18
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Here's been my experience,,,

The last few gun shows I have gone to,,,
Every seller had a copy of the latest Blue Book of Gun Values.

For the most part they were using the highest book value,,,
As justification for their asking price.

It became a haggling process of not so much arguing with their price,,,
But arguing on the "condition" they rated the gun at.

One gentleman (I use the term loosely) wanted 100% value for a revolver that showed a lot of wear,,,
He held absolutely firm to the price listed in the blue book,,,
We argued (nicely) over the condition and I got him to admit it was only about 80% instead of 100%.

But, he would not budge off of what the blue book said was the value for an 80% gun.

Don't expect lower than retail prices at most gun shows,,,
Expect retail or higher as a matter of course.

Gun shows have taken the philosophy of "Caveat Emptor" to new heights.

Bargains might be there, but it's up to you to know it when you see it.
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Old February 23, 2010, 09:22 PM   #19
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I attended a show in FLA at the end of Jan. Palmetto/Civic center....found some good deals there on AR's and other assorted items...I really spend some time and check out all the tables....usually can get a deal or two...MA. gun shows are tough...lots and lots of people and the prices are sky high.....
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Old February 28, 2010, 08:41 PM   #20
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Gun Shows are a BIG WASTE OF TIME.

I live in Nevada, a very gun friendly state. Been to 2 gun shows, big ones. Both sucked big time. The only good deals I found were on beef jerky-if you buy in mass!
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