Sky-high prices at Robarts Arena gun show

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Two AKs, a WASR and A Saiga, priced far beyond MSRP Saturday at Robarts Arena.

I guess I can stop worrying about the government legislating my EBR’s (Evil Black Rifles) out of my hands.

I won’t be able to afford to shoot them much longer anyway, or buy another, based on what I saw Saturday afternoon.

Sarasota’s lone gun show, held at Robarts Arena, used to be a good local show – mostly regional dealers catering to a local crowd.

Not anymore.

Now it’s an opportunity to cash in – a chance to screw-over some unsuspecting gun owner by charging four or five times MSRP for guns and ammo.

  • AKs were $1,000.
  • ARs were $1,500 – $2,000 for low-end brands – some I’ve never heard of.
  • .223 was about a dollar per round.
  • AK mags were $40.
  • AR mags were $60 – and that’s for GI aluminum.
  • One dealer wanted $40 for a box of .45 acp that still bore an $18 price tag.
  • Another wanted $1,200 for a NIB WASR – a WASR? The last one I bought, about a year ago, cost me $350.

Profiteering is a dirty word, for good reason. It’s a pejorative for an unethical business practice of making an unreasonable profit on essential products during times of emergency.

It fits.

I’m off gun shows for a while, at least until some sanity is restored.

 

 

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About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1777 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

6 Comments

  1. Of course,the dealers are expected to offer their products below MSRP and offer the ammo purchased 10 years ago at the same or lower prices. Strange thing the shows is that nobody is forcing anyone to buy at any price. And from the dealers perspective, it usually seems that the walking public is often trying to sell an item that is a “rare” and “highly collectible” piece that is priced by the ounce…akin to gold..

  2. I’m a vendor but I sell leather holsters that I create in this town. Some people say that my holsters are too expensive also. Funny thing is none of them can make holsters or have no clue as to what goes into them. I have found products that were priced too low and I have found them too high just like everywhere else. Because you might be a poor consumer that does little research on their purchases does it make the person you’re trying to buy from a crook.

    • I’m a vendor but I sell leather holsters that I create in this town. Some people say that my holsters are too expensive also. Funny thing is none of them can make holsters or have no clue as to what goes into them. I have found products that were priced too low and I have found them too high just like everywhere else. Because you might be a poor consumer that does little research on their purchases does it make the person you’re trying to buy from a crook.

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