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Shooting Industry September Digital Edition - Page 22
Defense Personal Defense Market Massad Ayoob The Highly Dedicated Personal-Defense Customer T he highly dedicated personal- your wholesale suppliers, you want to be determine whether the new stuff works or defense gun owner is the dream “the first on your block” to have new prod- not, a whole lot of gun buyers don’t agree customer for a retail gun shop. For ucts. While you and I might wish to first with that philosophy. They want to buy these customers, a weekly visit the new gun, and if they want to your establishment is not to have it first, they’ll buy it uncommon — and often, it’s from the first dealer who can more than once a week. From deliver. the personal defensive side of This particular clientele the firearms market, this cliis constantly searching for entele will have certain distinsomething better — for inguishing features. stance, a hollowpoint personThey read in this field, both al-defense round that expands print and electronic media. more reliably than what’s curThey’re aware of new products rently in their carry gun or as soon as they’re officially anhome-defense gun. Be the one nounced, and sometimes soonwho can supply that. Case in er. Their interest piqued, they point is Federal, which has at want to handle those products last brought out a moderate— and if they like them, they recoil #1 buckshot load with buy. their Flite-Control wad. This To cater to this segment, extends the range of the buckstay in touch with the manufac- Your serious shooter will be purchasing a wide variety of ammo, from shot charge by keeping the turers’ reps. Between reps and high-performance to low-price practice loads, in his caliber of choice. pattern tighter. What Serious Customers Need , Captain Obvious, am here to say that the serious customer needs ammo. Yes, most of your serious shooters reload, so make sure you have components on hand. More than one gun shop does a booming business (no pun intended) with full lines of reloading equipment, from starter kits to high-tech progressive press setups. Interestingly, though, I’m seeing a heck of a lot of people who paraphrase Commodore Perry and say, “Damn the cost, full speed ahead (on purchasing factory ammo).” The more the customer earns in his occupational life, the more he is likely to realize that when he figures what his time is worth into the equation, it becomes cost-effective for him to simply buy factory stuff. These customers buy in volume. They tend toward top-quality ammo with a good “street reputation,” such as Federal HST, Remington Golden Saber, Speer Gold Dot and Winchester Ranger. (Winchester’s sometimes more readily available PDX is simply an outgrowth of their Ranger line.) There are all kinds of serious shooters. Some of the targetshooting competition disciplines — Police Pistol Competition, for instance, and traditional bullseye for handguns, and trap and skeet loads for competitive clay bird shooters — revolve around “light loads.” Those soft loads mean the guns can keep going with minimal maintenance for a very long time, and for very high round counts. 22 SEPTEMBER 2012 I Spare Parts & Holsters Stock spare parts such as recoil springs, illustrated here with Springfield Armory XD(M). Your serious defensive shooter is more likely to be shooting full-power ammo, maybe even +P, which accelerates wear. This means the serious defensive shooter is more likely to need spare parts, and perhaps some direct maintenance if you have an in-house or contract gunsmith service. We’re talking primarily Subscribe to SI DIGITAL www.shootingindustry.com