Wholesalers Good and Bad

Discussion in 'NFA/Class 3 & FFL Discussion' started by cbb35, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. cbb35

    cbb35 New Member

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    I started a firearms business recently that is out of my garage and an adjoining room. Business is steadily increasing and even though I just started in September, I am on track to sell in the neighborhood of 30 guns by the end of this year. Granted, not a lot by some standards, but for my small business, I am excited.

    I want to give kudos to the following Good wholesalers/distributors: RSR Group, Lipsey's, Davidson's, MGE Wholesale, and Zanders Sporting Goods. Each one of these businesses has helped me get started, and have worked with me to establish a supply chain for my new business.

    I want to say boo (among other things) to the following Bad guys: Jerry's, Sports South, Bangers, and Camfour/Hill Country. These guys will not sell to those starting businesses out of their home. Each one said it is "company policy." I hope one day to have a storefront, but finances rule the day. If your business is to sell wholesale guns, why would you care how an FFL holder has their business set up? If BATFE grants the license, I fail to see why you would deny sales to a dealer just because that dealer does not have "traditional" retail space. Even if you sell only 25 guns a year to that dealer, that's 25 guns sold.

    I encourage everyone to support the distributors that are helping ALL dealers (home, internet, and retail space) grow their business, and I am asking everyone to tell the other jerks to go pound sand. If they lose enough accounts, they just might change their tune.
     
  2. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Welcome to the Forum. We have an "Introductions" area where you can say "Hi" and tell us a little more.

    We also have a section where you can discuss your relations with companies.
     

  3. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    While I don't agree with these types of policies from distributors I can understand it. As a business owner you have certain policies that some of your customers probably don't agree with. As you'll see if you stay around long enough home based FFLs come and go like you wouldn't believe. So instead of having a higher rate of turnover they just don't sale to us. That's okay, I'll be happy to spend my money elsewhere.
     
  4. bearrwe

    bearrwe New Member

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    I'm sorry but I just cant see your side in this. As a business owner you will make decisions for yourself and your business. You want people to "pound sand" because they dont cater to you, how are you going to react when someone tells you how to do business? Just find someone else to buy from. I used to work for a gunshop in Ok, one of our distributors was in MO, I went to a gunshow in MO while visiting friends and there was my distributor selling at wholesale at the gunshow. We changed distributors,sh** happens. As a at home gunshop you are going to run into problems, shops with overhead are going to resent you!, distributors with lots of stocking dealer customers my offer to not sell to non stocking dealers to retain customers. In truth they are fighting to stay above water and you are working out of a boat! It can work out foreverybody but you aren't going to always play nice.:rolleyes:
     
  5. cbb35

    cbb35 New Member

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    bearrwe: I started my business after I lost my job in this hope and change economy. So I don't need you to tell me stuff happens. I have a family and a mortgage, so if I'm "working out of a boat", the darn thing has holes in it. You don't know me, so let me tell you that I will "play nice" until its impossible to do otherwise. You certainly have no idea about how I will make decisions, so go roll your eyes or whatever your cute little graphic means at somebody else.

    My point is simply this, if you are in business to sell wholesale firearms, then sell them. Don't pick and choose who you sell them to. You might as well open a taco stand and have a policy that you only sell to Hispanics. So, I am not asking anyone to "cater" to me individually. I'm just not a fan of discriminatory business practices in general. If you disagree with me, fine. But you need to take a step back and not attempt to lecture someone you don't know about how and why they will make decisions. That's called talking out of your rear end, and it is not particularly useful.
     
  6. cbb35

    cbb35 New Member

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    silverado113: I see what you are saying, and you have a good point.
     
  7. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    I would also add that if business goes good and you get into a storefront don't forget they didn't sell to you when you were home based. Here is the intro section: http://www.firearmstalk.com/forums/f2/
     
  8. cbb35

    cbb35 New Member

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    danf_fl: Thanks for the welcome, and I am still looking for the introductions area. If you could point me in the right direction I'd appreciate it.
     
  9. cbb35

    cbb35 New Member

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    I'd like to add Williams Shooters Supply, Inc. to my list of Good Guys. Thanks for the help!
     
  10. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    WSS has been good to me as well. I haven't ordered from Lipseys though it seems like everything is allocated. Also check out OMB Guns, LM Burney, Independent Sports Supply (little company with good service).
     
  11. bearrwe

    bearrwe New Member

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    Sorry you got all hurt. The roll eyes that offended you was more in reference to the notion that the dust was also my competition. By the way you might run into that also. The working out of a boat was a reference to you not having the overhead I couldn't care less About your decision making whys and why nots, I only said like you these businesses make decisions and they decided to limit their business. I know that some manufacturers will not sell to wholesalers that sell to non stocking dealers at the same price. As far as the taco reference it's kind of like your a taco cart parking in front of a Mexican restaurant and the local butcher doesn't want to lose the bigger business in order to sell you a few hundred dollars worth of meat. Is it right, maybe not but when you get a actual shop and that distributer that wouldn't sell to you in your garage offer you a better deal for buying more than the distributer who sold to anybody you might find yourself taking it because you need every penny to survive. And I'm not lecturing you, I stated my thoughts, not yours, as someone that has started a shop and worked for others in this field for many years. If someone not seeing things the same way as you is "talking out their rear end" you my have a tough road ahead!
     
  12. Old_Crow

    Old_Crow New Member

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    It's a miraacle you got an FFL without a store front. Most people in my area that didn't have a store front lost their FFL 15 years ago. I sold a hell of a lot more than 30 guns and I never took a Davidsons order. You should count your blessings and move on.
     
  13. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    Not a miracle at all, there are quite a bit of us "Kitchen table" guys. The hardest part is more the zoning laws of you local area. As long as you follow the rules and intend to engage in the business the ATF could care less.
     
  14. Old_Crow

    Old_Crow New Member

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    I live in the county. The area I live in is zoned light commercial/residential. I have never had a violation nor have any crimes been committed with any of the hundreds of guns I sold. My books were straight, not that anyone came to inspect them.

    I wasn't the only one that lost his FFL at the time. Several saw it coming, and got a cheap storefront in an office center. Almost half the shooter at the skeet range I was shooting at during that time had an FFL.
     
  15. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    Wondering if that had something to do with the zoning board. It just doesn't sit right with the rules I've read and maybe they changed them since then.
     
  16. mountainman13

    mountainman13 New Member

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    I like camfour but they also aggravate the hell out of me. Their website is difficult to use and they have a HUGE inventory of guns they won't sell to us because we are located in Massachusetts (so are they). I asked what they would do if we pushed the issue (technically it is illegal). They said they would just drop us. It really cuts down on our online gun sales and increases our costs because we have to order non-compliant firearms elsewhere. It's a pita but it is what it is. Other than that I can't complain about them and honestly our handler Chris is awesome.
     
  17. SteveA

    SteveA New Member

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    I have accounts at both Davidson's and Sports south & order way more from sports south.
    Why? Simple reason, If I order more than $300-350 worth from sports south they ship it free. Davidsons? Not even when I placed an order for over $1600 worth of firearms at one time.
    The sales guy even had the hutzpah to tell me that they lost over $6 million dollars in S&H charges last year:rolleyes: Yeah rriigghhtt, pull the other one.

    William shooting supplies has a habit of having the oddest guns in quantities. As an example, I was looking for 2 Ruger sp101's in .327 magnum for a customer, Davidsons, Sports South, Lipseys nada, no luck. All allocated or zeros, Will Shoot had 32 of them.
    Another time, different gun, everyone else allocated, Willshoot had 640 of them! I think they bought the entire run.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2012
  18. silverado113

    silverado113 New Member

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    Yeah Sports South don't like us home based guys. I like Williams Shooting Supplies too, it seems like not to many dealers use them so they have a lot of the hard to get guns that distributors allocate.
     
  19. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    Also wanted to add JSE Surplus to the list of GOOD guys. They're excellent to use if you're looking into doing custom AR builds.
     
  20. GarKeith

    GarKeith New Member

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    I have had good luck with LM Burney and Lipsey's.