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Discussion Starter #1
I have read several posts in different topics about gunshop clerks who don't know much. So let me tell you what I think.

I work at a gunshop/range once or twice a week if I'm not busy at my "real" job. The statement above does'nt bother me because sometimes it's true. You notice I said "sometimes". There are some who really know thier stuff and then there are those who just want to collect a paycheck. If you really think about it, just how much do you think these guys get paid? Not much at all. So what kind of help are you going to get at minimum wage or a little higher? Every once in a while we get lucky and hire an ex cop or military guy who knows his stuff. He's happy to be there because he's already drawing from his pension and he gets to play with guns!

It's just like any other job. So it's unrealistic for us to think that ALL gunshop clerks are going to be knowledgeable in all facets of guns, rifles, shotguns, parts, gunsmithing, ammo, accessories, etc.............

Sometimes us gunshop clerks laugh at the dumbass customers we get that don't know squat but think they do. So you see. It goes both ways.
You can't believe everthing you hear in a gunshop. And you can't believe everthing you read on a gun forum either. Turn on your BS filter and consider the source.
 

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I hear ya on the ignorant customers. But salespeople should know better. If you don't know the answer, don't make one up.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I hear ya on the ignorant customers. But salespeople should know better. If you don't know the answer, don't make one up.

Agreed. I tell the guys that work for me the same thing. If I ever hear them making up some crap I let em have it! I tell them not to baffle the customer with BS. I even go so far to tell them that if I catch them in the act, I will correct them in front of the customer. Normally this isn't a good thing. But if they know better, then they deserve to be embarassed.
 

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C'mon, you know everyone on the internet is an expert. :biglaugh:
Armchair amateurs at best. I love the ones who say "you should have," like they would have done any different given a scary situation.
 

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Agreed. I tell the guys that work for me the same thing. If I ever hear them making up some crap I let em have it! I tell them not to baffle the customer with BS. I even go so far to tell them that if I catch them in the act, I will correct them in front of the customer. Normally this isn't a good thing. But if they know better, then they deserve to be embarassed.
OH man you mean that pistol I just got will not make coffee for me in the morning?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
OH man you mean that pistol I just got will not make coffee for me in the morning?

No. But it will sure be there when the bad guys come.
 

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I am still surprised how I generally know more about a gun I am researching to buy that the person who sells them for a living . And granted I get a little obsessed and study spec sheets on one particular model. But they give incorrect info instead of looking it up or saying they dont know. I have had more than one guy a different stores tell me that the main difference between the KImber ultra carry and the ultra cdp is that the cdp is lighter because it has an alloy frame and the ultra carry dosent. :confused:
 

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I totaly understand why some counter guys have a bad attitude, I can't count how many times I've been in my local shop and some dumb jackass punk walks in and spouts a bunch of B.S., wastes their time and gets in everyone's way only to walk out the door and come back again and again never to spend a dime in the store.

On the other hand I've seen counter guys spout B.S. and waste the time of a good customer who spends plenty of money in that particular shop and on top of that have the gaal to treat that customer with utter contemp as if he wasn't worthy of their holy presence.

It does go both ways, but in my opinion the counter guys SHOULD BE MORE INFORMED AND LESS EGOTISTICAL.
 

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I am still surprised how I generally know more about a gun I am researching to buy that the person who sells them for a living . And granted I get a little obsessed and study spec sheets on one particular model. But they give incorrect info instead of looking it up or saying they dont know.
Don't guess . Look it up . We stress this heavily , but it still happens unfortunately :(

One thing to remember is that we deal with many hundreds/thousands of models and variations of current as well as discontinued firearms . We try and know a little about a lot of guns , but seldom are we an expert on many . When a customer comes in after studying a specific model for a month and agonizing over it , he very well could be more familiar with that specific model than we are . That's understandable .

I've been at this for 24 yrs . We average maybe 5-6,000 new/used guns sold each year . I still see guns that I have never seen before . Not often . But it happens .
 

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There are good gunstore clerks and bad gunstore clerks. The latter use to really bug me- but now if I get a bad clerk at a gunshop- I buy the gun I want online. If I get a good salesman who's friendly, informative, and generally helpful- I'll buy from him.

There are far more dumbasses buying guns than selling them.
 

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Big difference is between talking to the owner of the shop and the limited labor pool he has to hire from. The best advise I'd give shop owners is to train your staff to simply say "I don't know the answer, but I'll find out" instead of spouting out with something they just read in the magazine on the counter or the last mall ninja that was in. I go into very few gunshops anymore because of the untrained/uninformed staff. If I'm shopping, I KNOW what I want. Don't try to steer me to a model you have in stock and tell my why it's better. Save that for the uninformed masses that will believe in your ignorance.
 

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To be honest around here (around being 50-75 miles) I find the the worst places to deal with are stocking ranges. The closer of the two hires really nice retired LEOs that don't know a heck of a lot about guns but will pontificate on the subject endlessly. Mainly regurgitating 20y/o issues of Guns & Ammo. The other is exactly like dealing with a shady car dealer. You may be able to talk them down 10% or so from the inflated tag, but only "because they like you". You just won't get them a dime lower than MSRP. I always feel an overwhelming need for a shower when I leave there... ;)

Anyway I wrote this in response to someone in another forums bad experience. I think it still applies to a lot of shops in a lot of places. Present company excepted...

In 30 plus years of gun shopping I've been to darn few gunshops that attracted the best and the brightest. They just don't pay that well. It's a job that tends to attract kids that like guns but don't know a heck of a lot about them yet and the occasional retiree. Thank god for that occasional retiree! By six months into the job most of the kids are sick of dirt poor pay and their customers and it shows. Those that stay long enough to make chain store manager tend to be those that either couldn't make it in a better paying career or were too lazy to try. Over the years it's helped that I've learned to spot which of the species I'm dealing with. One will be grumpy and only grudgingly helpful, and the other will be cheerful but may have way too short an attention span to be of much help.

Feel lucky that you have choices. I live in a small town and really have only 3 choices for a stocking dealer. The local shop with a total of maybe 10-20 handguns in stock. This is actually a pretty good place - if it's a stocking item. Prices are usually fair and the staff is eager even if a few of them are just as green as spring grass. The pace of life in our town is slow, and special orders can be back-burnered for weeks before they remember to place the call. Still good jobs are really hard to come by here and this family owned shop did manage to attract some really good if very green kids.

The next closest (40 miles) has an excellent selection of pistols for top dollar. The staff ranges from a barely unhelpful and totally disinterested retired LEO, to somewhat a helpful but not too knowledgeable future LEO, to the gruff and way too busy owner, to a total 'used car salesman' (the owner's son). "It was owned by a little old lady who only fired it on her way to church on Sundays..." I don't shop there any more.

Finally there is a large retail chain hunting and fishing store 50 miles from here and they are paragraph one in spades.
 

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just to add- the worst is the "gunshop clerk wanna-be"- actual quotes from what I've heard from fellow "shoppers":

"If I were you, I'd buy that FN 57 because it hold twenty rounds of armor piercing ammo"

"The cool thing about my glock is that I've NEVER had to clean it- and I don't plan on cleaning it."

"Ohhhh- the Beretta- only true professionals know to use that one"

"I carry my snub nose .44 Mag in my front pants pocket when I go to the bars"
 

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I've found out from gunshop clerks around here that all of the used 45's that I've looked at in Maine have their original parts and finish. It must be true.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
A guy came in to our gunshop two weeks ago and asked about a job. I gave him an app. Asked him to complete it and bring it back on Monday to give to the owner. He then walked along the gun counter and said "where are the H&K pistols?". I said "the owner doesn't stock them because they cost more and don't sell as well but we can order anyone you want". His reply; "I guess you guys don't care about accuracy. If you did, you would have them in stock". He didn't get the job.
 

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I know it's hard to get qualified workers. That's why the online dealers are making a killing selling to intelligent buyers.
 

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i guess it goes back to what kind of work ethic you have.

no matter what job you have, you choose to work there, you agree on the pay, or you wouldnt be there. with that in mind, whether your a burger flipper or a gunshop clerk or a bricklayer, you should strive to do the best job you can do.

i know we dont all like our jobs, but it is our responsiblity to learn as much as we can about our job so we can do it the best we can.

my two cents

russel
SDMF
 
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