Gun control fears boost crowds, prices at Augusta gun show

Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013 3:19 PM
Last updated Monday, Jan. 28, 2013 8:58 AM
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Just after daylight Saturday, Larry Steverson already knew his gun show in Augusta was destined for the record books.

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Attendees check out some of the guns available for sale during the gun show at the Augusta Exchange Club Fair Grounds. The show continues from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.  TODD BENNETT/STAFF
Attendees check out some of the guns available for sale during the gun show at the Augusta Exchange Club Fair Grounds. The show continues from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

“See that line out there? It’s been totally insane,” he said. “It’s been like that since before 8 a.m., and we don’t even open doors till 9.”

The CEO of GunRunner Shows said he holds about 50 events a year across Georgia and South Carolina and has watched attendance – and prices – skyrocket since Pres­i­dent Obama announced a push for new gun control laws.

Thousands packed the Au­gusta Exchange Club Fair­grounds exhibit hall, with many waiting in line 45 minutes to an hour just to reach the front door.

“I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Dwayne Reigle, an avid hunter and outdoorsman from Harlem.

Like many visitors at the two-day event, he was interested in modern sporting arms or "assault rifles" that could be banned or become more strictly regulated.

“I came out today looking for an AR .223,” he said. “I found them, too, but I’m not going to pay what they’re asking.”

Many of the semi-automatic rifles have increased in price because of demand. At one table, rifles that retailed for $700 to $1,000 just six weeks ago were priced at $1,999.99.

“They must like their guns more than I do,” Reigle said. “That’s too much.

Forty minutes later, however, three of the four rifles laid out on a table were gone.

Ed Moreaux, a vendor who owns the Battle Shop in Dawson­ville, Ga., enjoyed the big crowds that include lots of gun show newcomers.

“There’s probably more looking at my table than buying,” he said, “but you have to look before you buy.”

Moreaux’s display of artwork made from rifle cartridges and vintage military firearms drew plenty of interest.

His centerpiece was a World War II Browning machine gun that could have seen battle in Europe or the Pacific Theater. The weapon was partially dismantled to render it inoperable, but for $8,000, a collector could take it home intact.

“This particular one was made by General Motors,” Moreaux said, noting that many U.S. companies churned out military items during the war. “General Motors made a lot of guns.”

Stever­son was enjoying the surge in the popularity of gun shows.

“This one is, by far, the biggest one ever here in Augusta,” he said.

Several vendors were newcomers or were returning after a long absence.

“There are two or three people here who haven’t set up at a show in 20 years,” Steverson said.

The show continues from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at the Exchange Club Fair­grounds.

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TK3 01/27/13 - 04:08 pm
On our third box ?

If YOU want to be at the mercy of criminals in or out of government, you are free to do so, but don't even bloody well THINK about using politicians and government force to try and disarm us AMERICANS.

NOTE: Despite the socialist Democrats Big Lie... Our U.S. Second Amendment right was NOT passed for "hunting" or "sport" !

OpenCurtain 01/27/13 - 07:01 pm
GunNewbie - check out Poderosa Trading Co.

BCmike beat me to it....

About 3 miles on your right after you cross the Bruke Co. Line heading towards Waynesboro, Ga.

Well worth the extra 20 min drive. They were notability much lower in price than local ARC dealers and honest in their dealings.

My nephew saved $103 of his 357mag vs. a store just off Washington Rd.

Since you indicated you're a newbie SERIOUSLY consider a 38 Special S&W or Rossi Revolver. But NOT a snub nose model. A 4 or 6 inch barrel will reduce the kick. Also purchase 1 box of 158 grain JHP ammo as a home defense rounds and 1 lighter weight box of rounds for initial training. The 1 training box each should be enough for you to understand how it will fire and what to expect.

Purchase a basic cleaning kit at Walmart or while you are there.

OpenCurtain 01/27/13 - 07:08 pm
SIB4 - I typo'ed Not Doug's Gun Room

It is Dave's Gun Room on Old Norcross Rd.
If you are headed in the Norcross on Old Norcross, it is on the left about 1/2 mile before the intersection of Old Norcross and Satellite blvd. McDonalds stoplight.

OpenCurtain 01/27/13 - 07:35 pm
Brad - no disrepect intended to you

But we were discussing current price extortion, when you mention "I make money. ", when you set up at the Gun Runner Shows.

You might consider a followup comment.

I DO NOT see you being one of the greedy profiteers we were discussing.

Watermedic 01/28/13 - 09:39 am

I seriously hope that ALL of the vendors that have raised their prices 300% to make a quick buck find extreme hardship when things get back to a new normal.

Although some of it is the consumers fault. I saw a person buy .22 lr ammo at a stupid price. Like $75 for 500 rounds and he bought over $1200 worth.

That is nuts!!

debbiep38 01/28/13 - 05:54 pm
Bet there weren't alot of

Bet there weren't alot of gang-banging Obama voters hangin' out at the Hale Street gate.

KSL 01/28/13 - 06:31 pm
Open Curtain

I love it when someone reinforces the advice given to me by law enforcement in 1979. I especially like stainless steel.

KSL 01/28/13 - 06:33 pm
Ammo prices may be up because

Ammo prices may be up because of the Feds buying it up.If they will run guns, what won't they do?

OpenCurtain 01/29/13 - 11:06 am
Buy ammo vs. reloading

All prices Current (1-28-13)

Primers 1000 small pistol $42.00 or $0.0420 each.

Powder 7000grn $27.00 or $0.02 @ 1555.55 loads at 4.3 grn each.

Bullets 500 @158 grn $68.00 a box or $0.14 each.

Once Fired Cases 500ea. $50.00 a pack or about $0.10 each.

Cost to reload a box of 38 special 158grn rounds using 4.3 grn W231 and a small pistol primer= $0.30 x 50 = $15.00

Gun Show Price $40.00./ 50 = $.80 a Round
Saving $.50 a round or $25.00 a box.

NOTE: Does not include the 1 time cost
of a single round Lee Hand Reloading tool and extras about $100.00

I use a RCBS Rock Chucker (rifle) and a Dillion progressive (pistol)

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