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Discussion Starter #1
I helped an old friend recently do a show not too far from his home is PA at a show selling mostly older milsurp ammo....

It was a pretty interesting day.....here is what I took away..

-Dont get into it with anyone who lowballs or offends you

-If the deal is not right its not right

-People should actually come to a show with hard cash.... People were asking him to take a credit card 10 min into the show

-Stick to your prices and dont buy the BS....

-I have no time for tire kickers at my stage in life....

Best story of the day was a guy who came around looking at multiple calibers of ammo. He wanted to buy all the .223/5.56 my friend had. They starting negotiating and at one point told my friend he was nuts and he saw the ammo alot cheaper at 2 other dealers tables in the show... The air was thick so I kind of broke them up and told the guy we would think it over and he should buy the ammo from the other sources since it was cheaper......Fast forward about 45 minutes and this winner comes back to the table. When I approach him to ask if I can help he just mutters wheres the .223 ammo? I told him it all sold out a few minutes ago..... he starts to flip out.....I asked what happened to the 2 other dealers with cheaper prices?? Mr. Winner just walked away......
 

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I helped an old friend recently do a show not too far from his home is PA at a show selling mostly older milsurp ammo....

It was a pretty interesting day.....here is what I took away..

-Dont get into it with anyone who lowballs or offends you

-If the deal is not right its not right

-People should actually come to a show with hard cash.... People were asking him to take a credit card 10 min into the show

-Stick to your prices and dont buy the BS....

-I have no time for tire kickers at my stage in life....

Best story of the day was a guy who came around looking at multiple calibers of ammo. He wanted to buy all the .223/5.56 my friend had. They starting negotiating and at one point told my friend he was nuts and he saw the ammo alot cheaper at 2 other dealers tables in the show... The air was thick so I kind of broke them up and told the guy we would think it over and he should buy the ammo from the other sources since it was cheaper......Fast forward about 45 minutes and this winner comes back to the table. When I approach him to ask if I can help he just mutters wheres the .223 ammo? I told him it all sold out a few minutes ago..... he starts to flip out.....I asked what happened to the 2 other dealers with cheaper prices?? Mr. Winner just walked away......
He must be one of the tourist that come to Florida with a white shirt and a twenty dollar bill and never change either one
 

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You always have guys like this, and it's nothing new. Years ago I advertised to sell my collection complete: I thought I was quite clear. I got one response who turns out to be a guy who wants to cherry pick my best stuff and trade: his "trade" was his stuff at the current (at the time) prices) versus what I had paid years before. That was probably in the 1985-90 time frame.
Unfortunately, dealing with butt wipes is part of the selling/trading game: on both sides..
Not that I don't always try to lowball stuff myself, but I felt like my offers were always reasonable: low end of going rates.
I get tired of scalpers myself, but just walk away without saying anything.. I've been going to shows 50 plus years and 50 years ago yo saw guys bringing same overpriced stuff for show after show and whining about how nobody ever bought from them.
 

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Just wait till a guy wants to disassembly a gun to look at markings, then he leaves a pile of parts!
Best to put a fair price on the rifle at what you want, and if it sells fine, if it does not, it goes back home. I love those credit card freaks or the guys that got to snap the trigger 4 or 5 times. Then they try to remove the the bolt and have no bore light. You need price tags and a sign "ASK to Handle". Best are those few morons that come in the door and want you to hold the rifle for them without full payment. Better yet, I had a joker test a bore size with a live round instead of a gauge. Some do not want to sign a statement that they are not a felon or involved with domestic disputes and allow their name, address, and DL number recorded in my sales record book for a private sale.
Some of the worst are fellow sellers at the show during set up- they want stuff cheep so they can add $100 to the item on their table. I do not sell to dealers prior to the show. I gave a Mosin to a 20 year old kid at $80, it was his first surplus rifle, and I knew his face because he worked at the Pick and Save for cheep wages. I made his day. Sold it for what I paid many moons ago. You can not take the stuff with you at my age. Best it goes to some collector or individual that will treasure it. For low ballers, its best to have Petersons 2020 price guide handy and pull it out. Lets see its value is actually....😉
You got to love gun shows...

What is really nuts are the dealer guys that have prices so out of this world that it is a display table. I actually do like guys that pay just to set up a display table of rare stuff or uniforms. It's good to have a NRA table and CMP club table. The Civil War and Cowboy displays are popular at some of the big shows. Also the WW II artillery display. A food section for people to sit down is also nice.
 

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Prices are high at this time in history, very much out of range of a normal $15 an hour working stiff. It depends on the region and state or town/gun club, size of the show, dealers vs private sales, time of day. With covid most shows are closed except small local bowing alley or club shows. The surplus market has dried up, the sale of pistols is nuts, ammo is very had to find. Nuts that purchased $18 boxes of pistol ammo prior to Covid are selling it at 3x as walk ins. No primers. I am too old to be in a crowd and am hiding out.
Most WI shows have shut down due to covid. You are best buying from a club member or friend that is down sizing and dumping stuff. At small shows the deals can be had from private estate collections that the kids or wife are dumping at one show to get rid of the stuff that the old guy had. Their idea of a gun show is not fun. The goal is to sell stuff off for what the owner paid and not take a loss.
This is the only time I might actually find something I do not have or need and can actually get at a decent price. If retired, forget it.... prices are too high.

$ 300 on a dog mosin, $1200 on a cmp mix master carbine, $600-700 for an RC K98, $400 Turk dog Mausers,--- It seems most rifles as surplus hover around $400-600. Tall fat prices around $1000 have few takers. Prior to covid there were few walk ins with nice surplus stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My friend was asking $15 per box and had about 60 boxes with him...... A few boxes sold and then a Milllenial type who turned out to be a very nice and polite guy asks how much for all of it. He bought the rest at $13 per box and seemed very happy.

72USMC...... Never had a goy disassemble and leave but had this happen..... About 10 years ago I had a Pattern 14 rifle for sale in nice shape and still with volley sights in place. A guy comes by about 45 years old and starts asking questions...
The guy looked like he did not have Two Nickels to rub together but I learned never judge a book by its cover... He asks me price and if I am negotiable....He then starts asking me about the history, explain the takedown etc over the course of the next close to half hour. I finally say so where are we at? He looks at me and says he was curious because his uncle left him a rifle like this years earleir and he wanted information on it but did not want to buy another. I do not care if you buy a $2 item or a $2000 item from me, I always have time.... But that scholar really PO'd me!!
 

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Great to hear that shows are starting up again. Where was this one? Was there much of a crowd?
 

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You always have guys like this, and it's nothing new. Years ago I advertised to sell my collection complete: I thought I was quite clear. I got one response who turns out to be a guy who wants to cherry pick my best stuff and trade: his "trade" was his stuff at the current (at the time) prices) versus what I had paid years before. That was probably in the 1985-90 time frame.
Unfortunately, dealing with butt wipes is part of the selling/trading game: on both sides..
Not that I don't always try to lowball stuff myself, but I felt like my offers were always reasonable: low end of going rates.
I get tired of scalpers myself, but just walk away without saying anything.. I've been going to shows 50 plus years and 50 years ago yo saw guys bringing same overpriced stuff for show after show and whining about how nobody ever bought from them.
It's a human thing - made in the image of God but fallen.

Collector viewpoint here not seller/trader:
My grandfather had a saying, "Knock that price out of their head." Maybe. What I've learned is that if I can afford it sometimes I don't want to pay less. Happens all the time with small time tradesmen, and happened recently here with a rare, expensive and exotic accessory. When I asked for a price after some friendly conversations I ordered myself not to argue. It was high but not unfair - and is mine now.
 

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We went to 2 local small shows around Thanksgiving. Lots of guns for sale at very high prices. $700+ Glocks, etc. Lots of ammo for sale at very, very high prices. Common rifle ammo at well over a buck a pop. I did not see any guns change hands, but the ammo was flying out of there. Also quite comforting to note that inside, only about 20% of the people were wearing masks.
 

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Obviously don’t know where most of you guys live but even long before covid in my area every gun show around me was already 90% filled with outrageously priced stuff. Like a run of the mill Norinco Chinese SKS for $1000 type of stuff. You’d occasionally find the local guy who got a table to liquidate his own stuff who had reasonable prices and you could often find reasonable prices on accessories. Otherwise where I am you have the same vendors who travel around the entire state from show to show with these outrageous prices. If you traveled around to the shows you’d see the same guns over and over again because they never sold.

This was all before covid. Haven’t been to one since it started. I imagine it’s even more insane now, except now people would probably be actually buying this stuff.
 

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The last 2 during covid shows that I attended were small Raleigh military shows. Both were a waste of time. I was looking for parts for projects. I haven't been to the big Raleigh gun and knife show since pre covid and am leery about going. Not looking for any firearms or reloading components at todays prices but they are fun to attend and you don’t know what you might find. Found the Spanish American grave marker at a Raleigh show, made it part of my little display. The haversack is original too.
3782632
 

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i have done two shows last year and did quite well, ammo went real fast and fair price. CZ 7.62x54r 10.00 a box(20), 303 brit greek 20.00 a box(20), russian 7.62x39 7.50 a box(20), 9mm nc boxer primed 20.00 a box(50). mosin,s vg condition 275.00, swede 96,s very good condition 450.00. i might may have gotten more money, the buyers were happy.
 

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Apart from the CC part I agree.
CCs are part of modern life, love them or hate them.
Just get a good Merchant Processor, & use a smart phone with a card reader. It won't fix the stupid though, there is no fix for that.
Do price reasonably for the market, everyone & his uncle bertie has a web connection & is on "rockbottomsupercheap ammo.com"!
 
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I helped an old friend recently do a show not too far from his home is PA at a show selling mostly older milsurp ammo....

It was a pretty interesting day.....here is what I took away..

-Dont get into it with anyone who lowballs or offends you

-If the deal is not right its not right

-People should actually come to a show with hard cash.... People were asking him to take a credit card 10 min into the show

-Stick to your prices and dont buy the BS....

-I have no time for tire kickers at my stage in life....

Best story of the day was a guy who came around looking at multiple calibers of ammo. He wanted to buy all the .223/5.56 my friend had. They starting negotiating and at one point told my friend he was nuts and he saw the ammo alot cheaper at 2 other dealers tables in the show... The air was thick so I kind of broke them up and told the guy we would think it over and he should buy the ammo from the other sources since it was cheaper......Fast forward about 45 minutes and this winner comes back to the table. When I approach him to ask if I can help he just mutters wheres the .223 ammo? I told him it all sold out a few minutes ago..... he starts to flip out.....I asked what happened to the 2 other dealers with cheaper prices?? Mr. Winner just walked away......
Don't feel sorry for the guy.
 

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Just wait till a guy wants to disassembly a gun to look at markings, then he leaves a pile of parts!
Best to put a fair price on the rifle at what you want, and if it sells fine, if it does not, it goes back home. I love those credit card freaks or the guys that got to snap the trigger 4 or 5 times. Then they try to remove the the bolt and have no bore light. You need price tags and a sign "ASK to Handle".
Some years ago, at a show a group of guys came to my table. One of them (late 20s-early 30s) ignored the sign & took an AR`15 apart. (I was distracted with another customer and did not see him do it.) My 19 year old daughter took offense and put the guy in his place and put the AR15 back together, all the while lecturing him about how to do it. (I was watching her do it.) By the time she was finished, all the guy could say was "I'll bet you are wearing combat boots". She put her foot up on the table and said - you are right - I am wearing combat boots. The guy slunk away with all his friends making fun of him.

My daughter was in ROTC and had experience with the M16. (After graduation she spent 4 years in EOD.)
 

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I go to gunshows any more just because they kind of remind me of what they used to be like. Once I start to look closely at things it snaps me back to present day and I become pretty disillusioned. About the only things I buy anymore are targets and cleaning supplies. The yearly CO Gun Collectors show is a little more entertaining though.
 

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I bought ammo when the depression hit back in 2008 or so. People were dumping cases of stuff . I never tried to sell it except if someone asked me for it like the local gun shop , who'd run out of a certain caliber. Then this craziness started so I thought , "OK" and started to sell ammo. At first I sold to the gun stores at 3 times what I paid for it . Then I realized they were selling it for a lot more . My local swap meet , is such you can sell guns and ammo. I started in April and am still selling . Some weekends it's .40 , some it's 9mm . I pretty much have gone through all the .380 I want to sell. In a few months, the panic will subside and prices will return to some form of normal. Until then, my foresight , will cost you, however the fact that I'm selling means someone else is asking a lot more.
 
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