Friday, March 13, 2009


Yep, it has been one of those weeks, but thankfully I've made it to Friday relatively unscathed. Yesterday was all day in the studio recording voice-over for the last episode of SHOOTING GALLERY. Today is a TBD: SURVIVAL day. Be careful what you wish for!

I'm also working on the outline for the DVD companion — the compete guide to carrying a gun in the backcountry — to TRAIL SAFE. The idea is that TRAIL SAFE provides the conceptual structure and the DVD gives you the nuts and bolts. You saw some of those nuts and bolts in THE BEST DEFENSE episode on being safe in the backcountry, which has (surprisingly) turned out to be the most popular episode of the season.

Also also, I want to try something really different for Season 10 of SHOOTING GALLERY — a viewer-generated episode where you guys get to pick what we film. Actually trying to figure out how it will work...obviously we'll use DRTV to set up the survey...we just haven't decided what's going to be on that survey.


Some notes on the ammo shortage...I'm seeing a shift in the terminology as the shortage drags even on some of the firearms forums we're "hoarders" as opposed to "people stocking up." An interesting, and totally normal, part of the cycle...blame the consumer and take the heat off the real cause, government's intentional and inadvertent  signals to the market. There are "ammo control" bills being introduced in statehouses all over the country, our enemies have said and continue to say that while they might not be able to "get" guns, they can get ammo or components; the current administration is unequivocally the most antigun in history and has repeatedly sent signals that it plans to "do something."

Given all those factors, I would like someone to explain to me why stockpiling ammo or reloading supplies is "irrational hoarding." In a normal market, increased demand would lead to increased supply, but no ammo supplier is going to tool up in the face of new government regulations and potential changes in U.S. foreign policy. It's also much harder for foreign ammo manufacturers to get their products to U.S.'s like a pipeline with big holes in it.

The market will stabilize. I say that with this caveat: the government does nothing to refuel the fire, a la Eric Holder's casual call for a new AWB a few weeks ago, which reignited a market that was showing signs of cooling off.


Anonymous said...

This week has really sucked, man. I hear you.

Maybe for Shooting Gallery you could focus on how to set up an air rifle range at home, or how to set up an airsoft backyard range, or even an indoor range - something for the urban shooters constrained by local ordinances or unfriendly neighbors. Just a thought.

The run up in all things firearms (guns, ammo, reloading components) is just like any bubble - there's a down side of the mountain waiting, just like with fuel last year. It always, always happens. The exogenous event, of course, would be the administration "making a move" which would extend the bubble and warp it in one direction or another, but not prolong it indefinitely.

Thanks for all that you do Michael, and I hope you feel better soon.

Anonymous said...

Trouble is, the buying binge will end one day. When it does, retailers and manufacturers are going to see sales practically END for a period of time. My local guy tells me he has sold more ammo since Nov than he normally sells in a year. When the buying frenzy ends he will be stuck with (I predict) a ton of inventory that no one will buy. That's not good for the industry either.

Tim Covington said...

I know it that it is jut my paranoia talking, but I really wonder if Obama and Holder own stock in firearms and ammo manufacturers. Every time I think the frenzy is going to slow down, they open their mouths again.

Anonymous said...

Does Holder own stock in ATK, the parent company to Federal?

Anonymous said...

What do I want to see filmed for Season 10? Let's see now . . .

Squibby, doing anything - shooting, gun cleaning, maybe even vacuuming the living room. Yeah, that's it, Squibby, doing anything!

< G >

Anonymous said...

OK, I'll Ask!

Who's Squibby?

Anonymous said...

Idea for SG Episode.

Picture a back porch barbeque get together (better finish that BBQ Pistol Project). One out in the country where you could go out back and put a few rounds downrange...maybe ambush a squirrel or protect some crops from crows or something.

Just a bunch of friends, relatives and neighbors getting together with the family (mainstream) that like guns, bringing the guns in to the house or whatever and telling about the them a bit.

You'd get a chance to show the whole world that pistol you've been telling us about on the podcast....the 38-40 conversion...

Carteach said...

People are buying more than normal because of the stated threats from the current administration. Add in the huge crop of brand new first time gun owners the same administration gave us, and we have reduced inventories.

It's a consumable though, and when (if) supply normalizes people will shoot up what they have and come back for more. It happened under the Clinton administration as well. The only difference here is the seriousness of the threat to citizens.

Viewer directed filming? So hard to choose....

Perhaps more on common self defense drills folks can practice at home with blue guns (or firearms assured empty).

Anonymous said...

Also, how many of us have bought "enough" ammo for now and are waiting for prices to get a lot lower before buying a lot more?

Commodity prices have crashed, so all we need is for the supply/demand mismatch to correct itself and prices will get better. That ought to allow a softer landing than many fear.

BTW, I've read that Black Hills is increasing their production capacity, but they're probably a special case of a relatively new and small manufacturer getting bigger, and one that sells to the government as well.

rremington said...

Take the SG cameras to Boomershoot!!!
Long range shooting at explosive targets!
And maybe a general (hunting) rifle class at one of the shooting schools. How to use the bolt gun for practical purposes.

Anonymous said...

I've used the word "hoarding" and don't necessarily think it is inaccurate in terms of capitalist economic theory. While many consumers are buying additional ammo as a result of real or perceived incentives, there are those that are hoarding in hopes to profit from the shortage they believe is coming down the road. It happened back in the 1993 hyper-market during the run up to Clinton's Ban.