Volume 25, Number 4 June/July 2017

Archive for the ‘What’s Selling Where’ category

By Peter B. Mathiesen

McClelland Guns, Dallas
Family owned since 1972, this 8,000-square-foot retailer averages 1,000 guns in inventory and employs five gunsmiths. Handguns are selling well; hot sellers include Springfield 1911s, Para Pro Customs in .45, and Ruger LCR .38s. Smith & Wesson 642s also are moving well.

Shotguns are winding down, with a few Beretta A300s and 400s crossing the counter.

MSRs are selling daily, mostly DPMS Bull 20s and Bushmaster XM-15s. There are also a large number of custom-shop hog guns on order. “Our custom rifles sales continue to increase in scale. We see it as a great way to interact with our customers, creating a strong bond. You build them a gun they love, and they come back,” said owner Ron Rutledge.

Pawn Gallery, Clarksville
This small, independent pawnshop is located 40 miles east of Fort Smith off of Interstate 40. It stocks an average of 250 firearms and has two employees.

The Glock 43 and the Sig 220 are the two strongest sellers at the store. Springfield XDMs in 9mm are in the third spot.

Demand for MSRs is steady, but didn’t increase during 2015. “We really haven’t seen an uptick in rifle sales and it surprises us. That said, we are expecting demand to rise in the next 60 days,” said counter salesperson Kelly Elam.

Savage Model 10 Predators and Remington 700 varmints are doing well as cold temperatures settle in. Ammo stocks are good; however, specialty .22 Mag is still hard to keep on the shelf.

River City Firearms, Louisville
This dealer stocks an average of 300 handguns and keeps up to three employees busy. Handgun sales are at record highs. “We have seen steady increases in demand for MSRs and handguns since the Paris terrorist event,” said owner Derrick Myers.

Although S&W Bodyguards and Shields have sold well, the December price drop on Ruger LCPs sent turns through the roof. Other brisk sellers include M&P models and Taurus PT22s.

MSR demand is up nearly 200 percent from late November, with multiple turns daily. Top brands include M&P Sports and Ruger 556s. There is also high traffic on ATI mil-specs from Davidson’s.

Ammo stocks are better than they’ve been across the board.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Island Firearms, Pittsburgh
With only 800 square feet of floor space, this retailer also uses the ceiling to display more than 500 firearms in the store. At the handgun counter, activity is notably higher than at this time last year. Glock 9mm and .40s hold the high ground; Sig .357s and S&W 686s are right behind.

Ammo stocks just may be the best in two years. “We finally have .22 Magnum ammo in volume, and overall .22 rifle sales were great during Christmas,” said owner Wayne Lyken.

MSRs are turning at a rate of about one a week, mostly Smith Sports. Shotguns are turning consistently, with tactical Mossberg 500s, Remington 870s, and a few Savage youth models crossing the counter.

L&H Woods and Water, Wall
This small-town dealer is south of Asbury Park and stocks more than 400 guns in 5,000 square feet.

Waterfowl guns are still moving, including Benelli Super Black Eagles and a few Browning A5s. Sales of MSRs have increased to four a week. Smith M&Ps are the top sellers, but Adams Arms and Rebel Arms are right behind. “We are starting to see demand increase for MSRs, and hopefully with distributor inventories in good shape this election time, we will have some pricing stability,” said general manager Tim Carey.

Handguns sales are steadily inching up. The Sig 220 10mm gets the most attention. Other high-demand handguns include nearly every Smith & Wesson revolver in stock.

Enck’s Gun Barn, Newmanstown
This store averages 400 firearms in stock. Handgun sales are strong, with high inventories of product. Ruger LC9s and Glock 43s and 26s pulled excellent numbers before and after the holidays. Cowboy Action revolvers are in good inventory, with Ruger Vaqueros topping the list.

Ruger 10/22s had one of the strongest holiday seasons on record. “It’s nice to see demand climbing, and for the first time in years, I have almost no shortages,” said owner Bob Enck. “Right now I can get just about anything my customers are looking for.”

Sales of MSRs are up, turning about three a week. DPMS and Smith M&P Sports see the most attention. High-end Lancer Rifles also are selling.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Cabin Fever Sporting Goods, Victoria
Located in western suburban Minneapolis, this 6,000-square-foot storefront stocks bait, tackle, and more than 600 firearms. It stays open seven days a week, from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Sales of Glock 43s and 42s have increased to the point where they have overtaken last year’s highest sellers, the Springfield XD and XDM. “Our handgun sales inched up this fall earlier than usual, and with some local crime issues our handgun numbers are strong,” said owner Jeff Byrne.

December saw high traffic on .22s, with 10/22s and target pistols leading the way.  Savage Mark IIs in both .22 and .17HMR are in demand.

Sporting rifles are slowing; however, varmint versions of the Tikka T3 and the Savage Model 10 are still crossing the counter. Sales of MSRs are steady.

Little Joe’s Pawn & Gun West, Kansas City
Keeping about 200 guns in stock, this family–run pawn and gun shop has two locations and specializes in used rifles and handguns. Glock Model 43s and 19s are holding the top spot for both new and used guns. Smith Bodyguards are also moving quickly.

Traditional hunting rifles keep the register warm. Top movers here are Remington 700 Varmint specials and a few .270s BDLs.

In the MSR category, M&P Sports are increasing. “MSRs are not a primary focus for our store, but they are picking up,” said manager Sean Boyd.

Osage County Guns, Belle
Located in mid-Missouri, about 60 miles north of Fort Leonard Wood, this retailer keeps more than 3,000 guns on the floor. It has seven employees who oversee 5,000 square feet of retail space.

Sig Sauer holds a commanding lead, and the new Legion line, especially Models 516 and 916, all posted strong turns. “Our overall business has leveled out since Memorial Day,” owner Edward Pepper said. “But we don’t count on the spikes. Instead we deliver great service that we can make a profit on.”

Sales of sporting rifle were off during the fall, though a few Kimbers and higher-grade Remington 700s saw turns. Sales of MSRs are steady, but not increasing.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Al’s Sporting Goods, Logan
Keeping an average of 900 firearms inventoried in 1,900 square feet, this retailer uses every inch of display space.

Sales of handguns are up by nearly 15 percent compared to 2014 sales, and this retailer forecasts a good 2016. “The election should keep our sales of pistols and MSRs rising,” said manager Val Spileitt.

Glocks lead the sales charts, primarily with the newer model 43s and the long-established 19s. Smith & Wesson K-frame revolvers also are on the rise, and Springfield XDMs continue to move every few days.

Sales of modern sporting rifles have consistently inched up since November. Colts, Daniel Defense, and Mossbergs are all selling well.

Boise Gun Company, Boise
In business for more than 16 years, this store has two locations that specialize in hunting and home defense firearms. It keeps as many as 4,000 guns in inventory.

The fall hunting season helped move Kimbers in .308 and .270 and Ruger All-Americans in .30/06. For winter, varmint calibers are beginning to move.

Sales of MSRs are beginning to climb, owner Gary Hopper said. “We see a definite trend with MSRs on a steady path to higher prices and greater demand in the coming year,” said Hopper. Top sellers include the entire line of S&W M&P rifles. LWRC and Daniel Defense are also attracting attention. Handgun sales are climbing, especially SIG 938s and Smith Bodyguards.

Jerry’s Outdoor Sports, Grand Junction
This mountain retailer uses 11,000 square feet to stock more than 1,200 firearms. It also has large inventories of safes, holsters, and reloading equipment.

Handgun sales are very strong. Smith M&P Shields are in the top spot; SIG 938s and 238s are just behind.

MSRs are turning multiple units daily. Smith M&P Sports have posted the highest numbers, but ArmaLite is also getting attention. “MSR sales are certainly getting less price-sensitive, and we are keeping up with demand,” said owner Jerry Stehman.

Savage Axis bolts in .22/250 are gaining steam among winter varmint hunters. Ammo stocks are good, with the exception of .22 Mag rimfire.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Sidney’s Guns, Augusta
This uniform and soft-goods company started to handle firearms in the 1960s. Today, it keeps more than 1,000 guns in stock. Overall, it carries more than 10 million SKUs.

December is the biggest firearms sales month for Sidney’s. “Our store has fostered a gift-giving environment with many of our clothing contractors and other businesses in town,” said owner Steven Fishman.

Handguns are the hottest they’ve been all year; traditional wheel guns, such as Smith 642s, hold the highest spots, but Glock 19s and 43s and Ruger LCRs are selling well.

Benelli Novas and Franchi Affinitys are posting good numbers, Stoeger pellet guns are in high demand. Other quick turns are coming from Remington 700s and Sako in .270 and .308.

Classic Arms, Cordova
Located in suburban Memphis, this store stocks a wide variety of classic hunting and home-defense firearms, carrying an inventory of nearly 1,000 guns. Waterfowl season is in full swing, with large numbers of Stoeger M3500s and Benelli Super Black Eagles IIs moving. “I don’t know if it’s Duck Dynasty, but we have a lot of new waterfowlers coming into the sport,” said counter salesman Keith Smith.

MSRs are selling at about two a week, mostly in M&P Sports and Ruger 556s. Sales of bolt-action guns have been slow, with a few Sakos in .270 crossing the counter.

Ultimate Outdoors, Searcy
This rural, northcentral Arkansas retailer specializes in hunting firearms, home defense, and archery. They keep more than 300 new firearms in stock.

Sales of MSRs are improving at three a week, but only on low-price product. Smith Sports and Rugers are responsible for the majority of turns. In bolt-action guns, the Savage Axis and Tikka T3 in .270 garner most of the turns.

“Our .22 ammo stock is improving, but the prices have really jumped. It seems the shortage has trained consumers to pay a higher price,” said manager Rusty Fischer.

Handguns are moving well—mostly Glock 19s, 23s, and 42s, but Ruger LCRs and Kimber 1911s also are selling. Shotgun sales are brisk, with Benelli Novas and Stoeger M3500s on top. The Remington 870 Express has had a few turns of late. Youth 870s are expected to move well for the holidays.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Howells Guns, Gray
This 27,000-square-foot store sells a mix of archery, soft goods, and firearms, keeping an average of 2,000 guns in stock.

Browning X-Bolts and Ruger Americans in .30/06 and .308 sold well during the regular deer firearms season. For blackpowder season, CVA Wolfs and Acuras led the sales list. Sales of MSRs have slowed. “Though steady, MSR sales have been lackluster,” said owner Adam Copp. M&P Sports, Ruger 556s, and Windham Weaponry in .308 are moving, though at a snail’s pace.

Handgun sales are on the rise, with Smith Shields and Glock 19s holding the high slots. Blaser over/under shotguns are making strong turns. The retailer reports adequate inventories of .22 rimfire.

Dunkelberger’s, Brodheadsville
With two locations and a total of 35,000 square feet of display space, this retailer services a wide area from Scranton to Allentown. Deer season is finishing up with heavy traffic on Savage Axis package guns and higher than expected numbers of Ruger Americans. The most popular calibers have been .30/06 and .270. M&P Sports and Ruger 556s led MSR sales, with four to five units crossing the counters.

Handgun sales have been strong and should continue to increase until Christmas. “Many of our customers give themselves a gift of a handgun,” said counter salesman Michael Frits. Ruger SR9s have been particularly strong. Smith M&P Shields are also fast movers.

Rimfire ammo stocks are good, and sales of Mossberg 500s and Remington 870s have been holding steady. Stoeger M3500s have been especially strong sellers lately.

The Outpost Guns & Ammo, Uncasville
This small three-employee shop specializes in home defense and training. Handgun sales are strong; high posters are from Glock 43s, Smith Shields, and Bodyguards. “Our handgun business is a staple for our shop. Training new shooters and supplemental training for existing shooters are our priorities. This one-two combination keeps our business growing,” said counter salesman Ernie King.

Other quick sellers include the Mossberg 500 and the Remington 870 Express. Henry lever actions in .22 are in demand, as are Ruger Americans in 308.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Joe Bob Outfitters, Hays
Located in western Kansas, this retailer specializes in home defense and MSRs. In addition to its brick-and-mortar business, the store has a large online presence.

Handgun sales have been very strong. The three top sellers have been Glock 43s, Smith Shields, and Ruger LCRs.

Sales of MSRs are also strong, but the real sellers have been custom-­part orders for lowers from Anderson and Spikes Tactical. “Even with slower sales for assembled MSRs, our lowers and barrels continue to grow,” said counter salesman Rolf Bertz.

Other strong sellers include the Stoeger M3500 and Savage Axis in .308 and .243. Rimfire .22 longs are in stock, but .22 shorts and .17 HMR are still in short supply.

Gat’s Guns, Dundee
This suburban Chicago retailer uses 25,000 square feet to display 7,500 firearms. MSR sales are steady, with a mix of turns at the low and high ends of the pricing spectrum. “If an MSR is priced below $699, it will sell. If it’s priced above $1,300, it will sell. However, if it’s in between, it just sits. I don’t understand it, but we have adapted our inventory to meet those two price points,” said general manager Randy Potter. Daniel Defense V11 Pros are experiencing the highest turns.

Handgun sales are strong. Glock 43s, Smith Shields, and Glock 19s are attracting the lion’s share of attention. Kimber CDP IIs are also making turns. Benelli 828 over/unders are on back order, and Remington 870 Deer Slayers have sold particularly well this season.

Davenport Guns, Davenport
This 3,500-square-foot retail space (which has 12 indoor shooting lanes) stands just yards from the banks of the Mississippi River. Keeping about 600 firearms in stock, this shop will celebrate its first year anniversary next month.

“Sales continue to grow. We’re the only indoor shooting range in Davenport. It’s been very rewarding to see the response from our community,” said manager Erik Mattly.

Handguns are hot, with Glock 43s and Springfield XDSs pulling the best numbers. At one a week, sales of MSRs are consistent. The top seller is ArmaLite.

Bolt-actions are turning well, including the Savage Axis, Remington 700 Varmint, and Cooper Firearms Classic. Caliber sales spread from .223 to .308.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Doug’s Shoot ’n Sports, Taylorsville
This all-firearms dealer built the first retailer shooting range in the state. The store keeps a wide inventory of home-defense and traditional hunting guns.

Following big fall sales for bolt-actions, a mix of Remington 700s and Ruger Americans are selling; .30/06 is the most popular caliber. And MSRs are in demand. “We’re seeing MSR sales starting to pick up,” said counter salesman P.J.

Handgun sales are brisk, with the high spot split between Smith Shields and Bodyguards. XDs and Glock 43s are hot sellers as well.

Winter waterfowl season is underway, so the store is seeing Benelli Super Black Eagle IIs and Stoeger M3500s pulling strong numbers. Home-defense customers are turning to Kel-Tec’s KSG.

Silver State Arms, Reno
With more than 500 guns in stock and three employees, this retailer has been at the same location in metro Reno for almost 40 years. Handgun sales are strong, and Smith Shields and Glock 19s are posting excellent numbers. But the store has experienced a decline in certain handgun calibers. “We almost can’t sell a new .40 handgun. I’m not sure if it’s the improved performance of the 9mm or just the high prices on .40 ammo,” said manager Ken Walls.

While sales of shotguns and bolt-action rifles are the slowest this store has seen in several years, MSRs sales—about four per week—are picking up the slack. M&P Sports and DPMS Oracles hold the top spots. Used guns continue to be a mainstay, with high demand for any classic lever action.

Red’s Trading Post, Twin Falls
Founded in 1936, Red’s is considered to be the oldest standing gun store in Idaho. The store keeps nearly 1,000 firearms in stock. It also carries a large line of reloading gear.

Handgun sales are hot, with heavy numbers of Glock 43s and 19s crossing the counter. The Wilson Combat 1911 is also a fast mover.

But the retailer is readying for reloading season. “Reloading creates a strong cash flow through much of the winter,” said buyer Larry Barksdale. Varmint guns are moving. Savage Varmints and Browning X-Bolts in .243 and .22/250 are the most requested calibers. Sales of MSRs are flat—an average of one a week, mostly in M&P Sports. Over/under shotguns are moving. Browning 725s and the Beretta 686 and 692 are selling well.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Mitchell’s Country Store, Fort Smith
This small, rural general store sells groceries and sporting goods, and keeps an average of 60 guns in stock. Handgun sales remain consistent. Although Glock 19s and Smith Bodyguards post the best numbers, Ruger LC9s are close behind.

Sporting long-gun sales are starting out slow this season, said owner Roy Mitchell. A few Henry .22s and Remington 700 BDLs in .270 have crossed the counter.

Final Fight Outfitters, Union
Located just 20 miles from Reelfoot Lake, this shop, which specializes in waterfowl gear and home defense products, keeps close to 1,000 guns in stock. Ammo supplies at this store are the best they have been in two or three years. “Although it takes a little planning to keep .22 ammunition on the floor, our customers can actually shoot their .22s,” said manager Jason Smith.

MSRs are turning at two a day. Guns over the $1,000 price point from Sig and Colt are seeing the most frequent turns. Ruger Americans in .243 are the most in-demand bolt-action rifles for pre-deer season.

Shotgun sales are brisk, and the store is posting strong numbers of Benelli Super Black Eagle II Classics and Extremes. Other fast movers include Winchester SXP pumps.

TP Outdoors, Monroe
With two locations, this hardware/sporting goods retailer splits its inventory roughly 50-50 while still turning nearly 5,000 firearms a year. Coming off the biggest sale of the year, this retailer is set for serious winter volume. “In Louisiana, we open September with a tax-free weekend sale that allows us to move the highest number of handguns during the year,” said owner Bill Petrus.

Handgun leaders include the Glock 43, the Smith Model 642, and Ruger LC9s and LCRs. MSRs are price-sensitive. Despite the long waiting period, silencers from Silencerco are gaining popularity with hunters.

Sales of bolt-action rifles are picking up. Howa and Savage combo guns in .270 and 7mm-08 are doing the best. Shotguns are also faring well. Beretta A400s, Benelli Super Black Eagles IIs, and Stoeger 3500s lead the pack.


By Peter B. Mathiesen

Blue Trail Range Gun Store, Wallingford
Founded in 1945, this family gun shop and range keeps 800 guns in stock. Preseason deer hunters are driving sales of lever actions from Marlin in .30/30 and .35 Remington. Remington 700s and 742s are also moving. However, owner Dave Lyman says he continues to struggle with ammo stocks, though he has seen some improvement with .22.

The compact handguns category is the clear winner at the handgun counter. Top sellers include Smith J-Frames and Ruger LCRs. A few shotguns are also turning, primarily Mossberg 500s along with a few CZ over/unders. Gamo air rifles are seeing increased demand, and several new models from Anschutz have crossed the counter as well.

Curt’s Gun Shop, Mifflinville
Keeping 250 guns in stock in a new and used mix, this north-central Pennsylvania store makes sure its customers are greeted by two black Labs. Taurus 738s and 11B2s are selling the best, but Smith Bodyguards and Shields also get serious attention.

“Shotgun sales have gotten really tricky in the last few years. I barely make ten dollars a gun,” said owner Curtis Moorhead.

Hunting rifles are moving, with Savage Axis in .243 pulling the best numbers. Other hot guns include used Marlin 336s in .30/30. Sales of MSRs remain flat, with one every two weeks. DPMS does best. As for ammo, Moorhead said, “Overall, stocks are adequate, but only because I spend almost every day sourcing inventory.”

Springhill Rod & Gun, Charleston
Stocking an average of 400 guns, this general sporting goods retailer has seven employees. Coming off of heavy promotional summer sales from Springfield Armory, handguns continue to move briskly. For October, Smith has moved to the lead; Shields and J-Frame revolvers are turning fast.

Deer season is ramping up demand at this store, though owner Dan Kessel notes he is selling an unusual combination of rifles. “With the coal industry in a terrible state, low-price-point and very-high-price-point rifles are attracting all the attention. Savage Axis and Mossberg Patriots are about dead-even at the low end, while Browning X-Bolts have staked the higher end, mostly in .243 and .308.”