Yesterday, I wrote about the gun buying frenzy. Later in the day, I visited one of my favorite gun shops to pick up a hunting rifle I had ordered.
Normally, when one orders a firearm through a gun shop, the delivery time is about three business days. My rifle came in three and a half weeks after the merchant placed the order. This is just another indication of the level of buying going on across the nation.
Gun shops don’t place orders with the firearms manufacturers. Instead, the manufacturers sell their wares to wholesale distributors and the gun shops buy the firearms from the distributors. So the consumer is the third point in the transfer of the firearm from the manufacturer. The distributors are backed way up in trying to fill orders and that’s why its taking so long for gun shops to get the firearms.
The merchant I spoke with yesterday told me he received close to a dozen firearms last Saturday. Some of those guns were ordered before mine was. He also mentioned he was still waiting for nonfirearm orders he had placed before Christmas.
When one purchases a firearm, the merchant is required by law to have the buyer fill out two forms. The merchant then places a call to NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) and gives them the information on the form. NICS does a background check on the buyer to make sure there are no legal problems with the buyer making the purchase.
Most of the time, the background check goes through while the merchant is on the phone with NICS. Sometimes, there’s a delay and the merchant has to wait to get a response from NICS. If the merchant has to wait, so does the buyer.
My check was delayed, but I wasn’t concerned as I had seen that before. I just hung around in the gun shop talking with the merchant and other customers and waited a bit. Sure enough, about thirty minutes later, the merchant informed me that my check had come back approved and we were ready to finalize the purchase so I could take my new rifle home.
The day being in the middle of the week and the time being around noon or so, I noticed what I thought was an unusually large amount of traffic coming in the shop. That’s normal for Friday afternoons and Saturdays, but not lunch time on a Wednesday. I noticed that most of the customers were looking at and/or buying handguns. I think I saw one other customer besides myself looking at a rifle.
Some people who do a lot of shooting make their own ammunition. The equipment to do this and the supplies are normally readily available at gun shops and online vendors. The merchant told me that in the last two months, he’s been cleaned out of supplies and is finding it very difficult to get more supplies from manufacturers and distributors.
I handload my own ammunition also. I keep the link to several online vendors saved in my ‘favorites’ file. In the last month, a lot of vendors have added banners to their sites stating that they are no longer taking orders because of the huge backlog of orders. Other vendors are stating that they are still taking orders, but they’re six weeks behind on getting them filled and shipped.
The shooting incident at the school in New Town, Connecticut set off a buying frenzy that has raged across this nation like a grass fire on a dry prairie. The grass burns off very quickly, but takes months to regrow. I have no idea how long it’s going to take for this buying frenzy to cool down, but I’m afraid it’s going to be quite a while.