Saturday, January 22, 2011

Gun Show

I went to the gun show this morning.  I decided to try to get there early; close to the time it opened which is 9:00 am.   By the time I got ready and made the 30 minute drive to the show, it was close to 9:30 am.

  These local gun shows come about 3-4 times a year and they are made of small local gun shops and individual collector/dealers.  You can see anything from beanie babies to Springfield Armory M1A’s and all the usual stuff in between.  I plopped down my $5 entry and walked into the show.  Man, was I crazy to think getting there early was going to be more convenient.   The venue for the show is small anyway, with 4 rows of tables, two along the side walls and two down the center of the hall.  I didn’t even get a chance to choose where I wanted to go and take my time to look at the typical gun dealer offerings.  All I could do is jump into the flow of old overweight men slowly browsing the tables, tween boys just goofing off and plugging up the precious space where one could walk, and a few women following along oblivious to their surroundings and I’m would say waiting their turn to get to go to the local shopping mall after their husbands finished looking around.  The crowd sort of reminded me of the scenes you see on TV of raves, with people packed together and grinding each other from one side of the room to the other.

  I eventually made my way around the hall and along each of the 4 rows of tables and then out the door.  Total elapsed time in the show, 31 minutes.  It was one of the most disappointing shows that I have been to in a while. 

My morning trip reminded me of a post I seen somewhere earlier this week asking why the quantity and especially the quality of gun shows have degraded to what they are today?  What about in your area, are the gun shows as good as they were, say 20 years ago, or are they still a good place for enthusiasts to gather?

 What do you think?

Friday, January 14, 2011

One Piece at a Time

I picked these AR receivers up at a pretty good bargain back last summer.  I knew that I wanted to build them into something that I haven't had before, but I couldn't afford to build them right away.  I have always had a tough time resisting instant gratification when it comes to firearms.  If I found something that piqued my interest, I would research religiously until a found one, then I would buy it.  As I age, I have mellowed out enough to delay my desires to lock n' load before I leave the parking lot.  So, my latest AR project has been as much of a treasure hunt for quality but cheap parts.

I bought the receivers at the best gun shop in the country Whittaker Guns in West Louisville, KY.  I say this because you can walk into Whittaker's and see anything from Hi-Point to Cooper to a Barrett .50 BMG and most everything in between.  The prices here are as competitive as any I've ever seen anywhere in the Bluegrass state, if your making a straight out purchase.  Whittaker still has these receivers listed  for $79.99 each, and if you like to buy in bulk, you get 10 for $76.99 each.  I thought that was a fair price especially if you priced and tried to buy a stripped receiver back after the election of our supreme leader.

I waited and watched the net for various sales and promotions until around November when Midway USA had a sale on lower parts kits for $59.00 each.  I asked Santa for two and bless his heart, I must have been a good boy the past year because they were under the tree Christmas morning!  

 I had a chance last week to drop the receivers and lower parts kits off at one of the local gun shops that offers gunsmith services to have the triggers kits installed.  After about four days, I got a call saying that the build couldn't be completed without extension tube, buffer, and spring.  Back to the internets for another bargain search.  I have liked the look and feel of the new Magpul ACS stock compared to most of the other options out there.  Plus the fact that Magpul makes a damn fine product, period.  I found an ACS stock kit for $135.00 plus free shipping.  Again, I felt like I had found a pretty good deal for my economical AR build.  UPS delivered the stock kits yesterday, so  after work this afternoon, I ran the stock kits by the gun shop and had them installed.  

In a couple more months, maybe I'll get a chance to put some uppers on these receivers and start to enjoy a little recoil therapy.

Ya'll have a good weekend.

Blue Steel