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where are the good sales people?


so, i'm looking to get my first handgun. i don't know very much about semi-auto pistols. the other day i was at Bass Pro south of Houston. i tried to ask this older gentleman about a few pistols i was admiring. he however was more interested in talking bullsheet with no one in particular. i'm okay with that. i didn't expect to get good help at Bass Pro.

tonight on the other hand, i went to Top Gun of Texas which was recommended. so, i ask the dude behind the counter to tell me a little about different guns. i tell him i'm brand new to handguns and try to ask some questions about different features.

here's how the conversation went at that point

SG (salesguy), "get a Glock".

me, "why"

SG, "they're the best"

me, "what makes them the best"

SG, "most reliable, you can trick it out"

me, "uh huh"

SG, "used all over the world. you can come out of the water shooting it"

at this point as you can see he's explained absolutely nothing about features on any gun.

me, "can you tell me about what features come a gun? i have read about single action and double action. what does that mean?

SG, "double action is harder to pull"

me, "why is that? how does it work?"

SG, "hey (insert other SG name) can you explain the difference between double action and single aciton?

OSG actually gives me a good explanation.

SG, "you should just rent some guns and shoot"

that was basically the end of our conversation.

i'm no longer in a sales position, but i grew up working in retail. i know how to listen to the customer and at least try and give an answer.

i hate nothing more than asking a question and getting "buy this".

sorry for the rant, but i'm sick of poor customer service these days. wake up people. most of the time, i can buy the same item online for quite a bit less. i don't mind paying more if i can get good help.
 

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Sales Clerks at Gunstores (I do it part time) see lots of "newbies", and handle them differently. If you are lucky you will encounter a knowledgeable fellow interested in helping you develop as a shooter/collector/sportsman.

I enjoy talking with serious "newbies' anxious to explore firearms. But since my store has no built in range or rentals, all we can do is handle the different firearms and talk about each. I always frame the information I give as personal opinion, and encourage the more serious to buy and read a good gun compendium to get a backround on what's out there. Short of shooting a particular firearm. there is no way to tell what is best for you. I encourage folks to get out with friends who already have firearms and do as much shooting as you can before buying.

If you like Walthers read all you can about them. Feel free to ask any questions you have here, lots of smart fellows with great expierence to help.

BTW Welcome to the forum, good luck with your new hobby!
 

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I hear ya! I was in the same position a few weeks ago. I was looking for a good, reliable pistol and it seemed that none of the sales associates at a shop wanted to help me. Luckily, a few of my buddies are avid gun collectors, so I went to them for insight. Thats when I baught my P99. No one told me about it too much, I was kind of going on blind faith in the name and from what I hear through forums, reviews, things of that nature. I'm pleased with it, but you can never go on what other people like until you try shooting it yourself. It's all about what your comfortable with.
 

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I understand that this is frustrating for you but it is also frustrating for the sales staff. Contrary to what you might think, many salespeople do not have a deep knowledge about their shop’s inventory. The numerous brands and models of firearms make it very difficult to know the ins and outs of each platform. The salespeople know even less about your personal preferences. Asking them to help you find the right handgun when you have not done some basic testing and evaluation of your own puts you at the mercy of their biases and prejudices. That’s why you got the answer to “Get a Glock.”

If you are serious about shooting, my advice to you is to get trigger time in a good structured environment (Basic and Intermediate shooting classes/drills). After you learn the basics with one firearm (in one caliber), you do need to shoot several different types of firearms and calibers to see what your preferences are. It is a little more money up front but you will see instantly why it is hard to recommend what you will like or what will work best for you. Reading stuff online or getting the opinion of others can be helpful, but ultimately it will come down to what you like and what you can afford.

I realize you do not see it this way but getting the recommendation to go out and try different guns before buying was fantastic, honest advice. Many gun shops would steer you to purchase a gun in their respective inventories. I was not there and I cannot speak to the salesperson's attitude, but even if he was a jerk, he probably just saved you $500.
 

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Here are the facts.

1/2 the population of the United States has an IQ that is less than 100.

and

1/2 the poplulation is below average.

These are sad truths but they are in fact the truth. So get used to it. You are living in Idiot America. I live here too. My frustration is that 98% of the people have an IQ less than mine so it is extra frustrating ?)
 

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Never have expected a good salesman when I go into most any store. Even (or especially) the "good" ones will steer you to the highest profit items. Unfortunately, there is no substitute for getting info from non-sales sources (users, range rentals, the Web, good publications, etc.) before entering the salesman's lair.
 

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BreakerDave is correct ????. Buying a firearm is all on you !! It?s like picking a Wife ??..what one man finds appealing ??..another man might not be able to stand.

The Internet is a wonderful place to read people?s experiences ?..not necessarily to get facts, because you will find a lot of distortions on the Net. Go to a forum that is NOT brand Specific ??.and read as much as you can on what people say about different handguns. Next you will want to try and get some hands-on experience through rentals or shooting friends weapons.

I would never buy a handgun that I have not actually fired on the range. It can be a costly mistake to buy something that doesn?t perform well in your hands.

Try and answer these questions before you buy:

1. What ?kind? [ semi-auto or revolver] of handgun do I want ??.. what will it be primarily used for?? Target shooting, home defense, conceal carry
2. What caliber of handgun do I want ?? What skill level do I have or what amount of time do I have to invest in training and practice. More powerful weapons ?might? take longer to master.
3. What price can I afford for the weapon. Will ammo cost figure into my ability to practice effectively.


Once you can answer these basic questions, you will be closer to being able to make an informed handgun purchase. You see, a sales person can?t really answer the above questions. Finally you can come here with concerns or questions ???and bounce them off this talented group to get yet another opinion to consider.

JF.
 
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