First Off let me be the 1st to congratulate you to the wonderful, strange, interesting and wacky world of Gun Owners. I think that you will find it a Brave new World & I hope that you have a great time here!
Now let us move on to the meat of the Subject!
So you have decided that you want to buy yourself a gun. Here is a few things that I have learned the hard way over the past forty plus years. I hope that you find them useful.
To begin. I most heartily encourage you to find out if it’s legal for you to own a gun.
Because sadly today there are a lot of restrictions on Gun Ownership. So If I were you. I would ask a lot of questions on wither or not you can legally own one.
As you will have to trust me on this one. As you do not want to go to jail or prison any time soon. It is the closest thing to Hell on Earth that is humanely possible. Its that bad!
Now if you have passed this hurdle and there are a couple of more coming your way.
You then have to decide on what kind of guns you want. That and what you want to do with it. This is one of the fun parts of of your decision making by the way.
Basically you have the following choices
Shotguns / Single Shot / Over Under / Semi Auto / Pump/ Double Barrel
Rifles / Single Shots/ Lever action/ Bolt Action / Semi Auto etc
Pistols / Revolvers / Semi Automatics / Single Shots
Machine Guns – Amazing but true! But you will have to do a ton of paperwork, live in the right legal area (Not California). have a spotless criminal record & have a lot and I mean a lot of $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
Now now let us get to the down and dirty of buying a gun!
Okay let us say That I have not scared you off yet.
Here are some places where you can legally buy a gun.
*****By the way be extremely careful about buying a gun off somebody w/o doing any paperwork. A lot of good folks now have a Criminal Record because of this dumb stunt. It is just not worth it. The Cops do run stings on innocent folks at Gun Shows all the time. So don’t say I did not warn you!********
Gun shops – This is where most folks buy their toys from. But this can be the most expensive place to do business with. As this folks have a high overhead and they must pass it on to the you the customer.
But if you mind your manners & become a regular customer with the shop. Once in awhile you can get a good deal with the owner. Especially when the Owner needs cash right now because of the business cycle.
Chain Stores – Like Bass Pro Shop, Walmart etc. They once in awhile have good deals. But again they have a high overhead and so must pass on the cost to the customer.
Pawn Shops – I have found a lot of good deals here. The reasons being that most Pawn shops have a diversity of goods that they sell besides guns. Most of them are the poor man’s bank for credit & low cost Jewelers. Guns for them are mostly a side line.
Recap- You have figured out how much you want to spend & what kind of a gun you want.
A good way to figure out what a fair market price by the way. Is to look up the model on the internet. I suggest that you look at Guns America and Gun Auction Web Sites. As they usually give one a good sense of what the market price is.
Also you can see how expensive and how available to ammo is for the gun is. Some of the older and rarer stuff is just mind boggling expensive. Like the 218 Bee for example.
You also have found a place that will sell to you legally and you have a good feeling about the shop.
Always ask to see the gun. A lot of Gun Shop Owners are armed & are able and willing to protect themselves & their goods.
Now take a good hard look overall at the gun. Note any dents, bangs or flaws to the surface.
Then check the action and see how smoothly or not it operates. Also check to see how clean it is and what shape the barrel is.**
If you have a problem ask the Clerk to show you how to do it properly. If he or she can’t. Then be prepared to walk away from the deal.
Right then. Let us say that you found your dream gun.
Here are some hopefully useful tips for you.
Ask if there is any wiggle room. A lot of guns for sale are on consignment. Which means the seller pays the shop to sell the gun for them. A quite often you can knock off 10 percent off the list price.
Also ask if anything comes with the gun. Ammo, holsters, gun bags, the factory box (For some reason having the factory box adds immensely to the value of the gun. So try & not throw away any that you have)
Or if it has a scope on it. See if the shop will bore sight it for you free. That will save you a lot of time, money and ammo down the road at the range.
Do not be afraid of being a ***Trigger Warning*** Shameless Whore & just ask. Since its your money.
Next say that you are broke like I am most of the time. See if the seller will do a lay away plan with you & for how long. As I have bought a lot of higher end guns that way. again it does not hurt any body to ask. As my Students use to say. “It is not personal, its business!”
So let us end the Sermon here!
Thanks Again and I wish you good luck & good hunting!
* I am always amazed about most folks. That when they decide to sell their guns. They go out and shoot off most of their ammo for the gun. Then they just hand it over to the Dealer w/o cleaning it.
** I almost always use this a an excuse to offer a lower price. Or failing that I have the dealer run a patch thru the bore. Because you do not want to have a ruined barrel. Otherwise you have just bought the world’s most expensive paper weight.