Thursday, October 06, 2005

I've been wanting a .45 Colt SA with a 4-3/4" or 4-5/8" barrel. I'd like the older, smaller frame size so that it isn't too much gun to pack on a daily basis. I about decided a Ruger New Vaquero .45 4-5/8" Blue but can't find one anywhere to look at. Have found the USFA Gunslinger and Nettleton but that's a hair out of my price range and neither were 4-3/4" guns. So, I went into a local dealer to re-look a 4-5/8" STAINLESS New Vaquero. However, it too was in .357 Mag so, I had a long talk with the owner and his wife. Explained how I didn't really want to pay upfront for a gun I might not like but that I understood why they'd want some sort of confirmation that it was sold before ordering (in the form of $$$$). Not really keen on that, but he called his distributor and quoted me a price of $428 on a CC & Blue New Vaquero .45 Colt 4-5/8". I guessed that when the gun arrived and I couldn't find any flaws I'd be getting it. I'm not enthused about paying more (it seems) for the Taurus, Beretta, etal than for a USFA or Ruger. Then again, one can pony up for a COLT or one of USFA's really cool tricked out guns. I figure with the Ruger that once I wear the finish off I can send it to Turnbull for a real CC job. I'm looking at a pancake holster for the Ruger which I may carry cross draw under the hunting coat (legal for me).

What surprised me is the number of .357 Mag guns on the shelves. Now, do the shooters want .357 Mags/.38s or are they simply not selling. Can't get the dealers to say. They've tried mighty hard to push the .357 Mag guns my way. Heck, the 50th Anniversary guns are even showing up in the shops USED! That's pretty quick turn around.

Unfortunately, that wasn't to be. As noted above that dealer told me he placed one on order and it was $428 to me. As his cost was $398, I figured all was ok. Apparently, he was just stringing me along. I say that because he didn't call when the revolver was supposed to be in, his help didn't know anything about the gun, his distributor didn't have any guns (as I waited for 1 hour for the help to get around to making the call to check availability). He was all hot to get my money but couldn't produce. Lost sale.

Instead I went to a shop owned, in part, by a highschool acquaintance. Prices aren't the best but aren't the worst either. New crew when I walked in the door. So much so that I thought they had a new owner! Not the case. However the young lady knew what I was talking about, got the details right, got right on the phone to the distributor, wrote up the sale, made the order, thanked me for my business, confirmed contact info 3 times, and acted like she, only an employee, was glad to have my business. THEN I allowed as to how I knew the owner. We had a pleasant conversation about 5 minutes long and I left. Total elapsed time, 20 minutes. This beats every other shop including this one with the previous employees all hollow. So now I've got an actual gun on hand at a distributor and on order. $459.90 + tax.

I don't take crap when I'm buying. I don't like to be lied to. I don't go back to stores where I'm so treated. I hope that all business owners note that SERVICE is what differentiates their business. Poor service loses sales, good service makes sales.

Ok, too much ranting. Back to the gun.

I'm going to need leather and I'm thinking that a simple pancake might work for me even though I've not had a lot of success with others of the genre. From Simply Rugged owned by Rob Leahy I think I might order the Sourdough Pancake (I get hungry just thinking about it!) which has the additional slot for crossdraw carry. This would be useful for me under my coat while hunting. However, I'm holding on to the order until I get the gun!

I have already ordered bullets, a 250 gr. Keith style, from Mt. Baldy Bullet Company in Cody, Wyoming. I like them just because they're in Cody! Anyway, I ordered 400 and we'll see how they work.

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