Archive for September 3, 2013

This is the first post in a two-part review of the San Antonio Gun Show and Texas Hunting Outdoor Classic sponsored by Premier Gun Shows on August 31, 2013.  This show is held at the Expo Center at the Freeman, an easy location to find even for a first-time visitor.  This was my second San Antonio show in the last year.

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We arrived at 8:30 AM and the line seemed to be about the same length as this time at the prior show I attended.

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I arrived with a pretty long shopping list and since I intended to check a firearm, we moved to the firearm check line at the front, left of the entrance.  It was nice to be in the shade, although there was an unexpected cool breeze that morning.

The blood drive was out in force with two vehicles instead of the single one at the prior show I attended.

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Here is the line at 8:50 AM.

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A Premier rep. came out to organize the lines and move everyone with online ticket purchases into a third line at the front, right of the entrance.  They entered a couple minutes early and were moved directly onto the show floor.  I did purchase our tickets online, but I was already near the front of the firearm check line, so I didn’t see any need to jump into the prepay line.  I kind of doubted anyone was going to run in and buy an ACOG ahead of me.

The show opened promptly, I checked my short-barrel Smith 629, and we were inside in no time at all.  The gun show was held in one hall and the hunting exhibition in another.  I spent nearly five hours on the floor which was divided into several passes, one to record vendors in attendance and take care of my own purchases, another to record firearm prices, a quick food break, then finish up with the hunting exhibition.

In terms of general observations, the show was well attended and it became rather crowded after a couple hours.  I saw lots of buyers, myself included (I spent nearly $1500), and the show lived up to expectations from my prior visit.  Concessions were horrible.  My wife complained of bad nachos.  I tried some peanuts that had a horrid aftertaste.  Fortunately, Don’s Smokehouse bailed me out at yet another show 🙂  The hunting outdoor classic was rather underwhelming, especially after attending the Texas Trophy Hunters Extravaganza only a couple weeks earlier.  The highlight for me (as a dog lover) was the dog show and the pet-related vendors.  There did not seem to be many vendors devoted to hunting relative to the total floor space (and there was a lot of empty space).

So, here is the vendor list organized by category.  I’ve tried to list vendors in multiple categories in the past when their offering seem to fit in more than one.  For this show, I tried to simplify the presentation and list vendors only in the category that most seemed to fit their product offerings.

This list if of named, easily identifiable individuals and businesses (i.e. posted business name or card) and the business names are in random order.  If I missed anyone, please post a comment.

Fireams/Ranges

Horizon Firearms
Lee County Armory
Blades ‘N Barrels
C&M Gunsmith Shop
JCB Businesses
A Place To Shoot
S.A.W.
Texas BP Arms
WC Armory
General Firearms
Unique Guns
Sparks Firearms
CYA
Viking Armory
Independence Firearms
Tejas Gun Shop
J&D GunWerks
Clifford Hopkins Sales
Keller’s Store
Brother’s Firearms
Colt Collector’s Association
SpreadFire Arms
Texas Shooter’s Supply
Nardis Gun Club
Crazy Gun Dealer
CJS Enterprises
Blackland Outdoor Sports
Model 1 Sales

Ammo

The Ammo Club
Ammo 4 U
Outlaw Ammo
Texas Wheeler Ammo
Alamo Ammo
Ammo Kan

Holsters

On Your 6 Designs
Grassburr Leather Works
Moonstruck Leather
Full Metal Jacket Firearms
Femme Fatale
Ultimate Concealed Carry
Diva Sleeve
Shepherd Leather
Packin’ Heat

Gear/Bags/Accessories

RTAC Accessories
Mission Tactical
Alamo Tactical
Sportsman’s Edge
Death Dealer Tactical
Mission Tactical (body armor)

Optics/Fiream-specific accessories

Gun Toyz
Explore Optics
Pro Serv
Prestige Optics
Tactical Gear
Clips
Black Gun Stuff

CHL/Training

Texas Professional Firearms Training
John V. Lee
Parabellum Weapons Training

Knives

W. Lee Custom Knives
J. Earl Custom Knives
Browning & Sons Custom Knives
James Knives
Sam Houston Ventures
Lone Star Knife Maker’s Supply

Prepping/Less Lethal

A Girl and A Grape
Spider Stun Guns
Charlie’s Knives and Things

Misc.

NRA
Action Jack
Kennedy Gun Safes
Defender Ranch
Radwing.com
South Texas Hunting Adventures
Carraway Calls
Alamo Pachyderm Club
Pen Central
River City Lock and Key
Lehr Arts
Custom Woodturning & Jewelry
Effective Product Marketing
Michael Efffinger Military Collectibles
ASG Security
Double Steel Safes
Diamond Down
MagLoader
Safari Charlie
Crimson Trace Laser Grips
Bullets and Bibles
Work Sharp
Krystal Clear
Paradise Antique Currency Co.
Ultimate Body Applications
Robert’s Jewelry/Coins
The Game Place
Sportsman’s Eyeware
Hoginator
Scentsy
David Astwood Collectibles
Personalized Rings
Texas Border Volunteers
Heavenly Insoles
K.O. Services (airsoft/knives)
Texas Law Shield
Bag Rack
Lone Star Technical Services
Zombie Nation
Cowboy Dave’s Rubber band guns
Army Surplus
Lazer Range
AMS Oil
Gun Show Tees
Concealment Woodworks
Blast Watch
Infinite Product Solutions
Various Nut/Jerky vendors, Head Country BBQ, and, of course, Don’s Smokehouse (my favorite)

Overall, it was a very enjoyable show.  I left with an ACOG (Green .308 cross-hair reticle), a nice Galco holster for the Smith 629, a bleeding Zombie target, a Magpul MS3 multi-mission sling, and a couple other items.  I also donated a Mossberg 500 to Trinity Oaks for an upcoming fundraiser to benefit wounded veterans.  If all works according to plan, I’ll return to SA in Spring 2014 and perhaps I’ll see you there.

In part II of the review, I’ll provide some firearm pricing updates.

 – Diligencia, Vis, Celeritas

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