IWI Tavor (courtesy iwi.us)

TTAG’s reached out to some of this country’s largest firearms wholesalers and learned that the sales channel is dry. AR’s they ain’t got. And no wonder. IWI US’s VP of Sales & Marketing, Michael Kassner, tells TTAG that IWI’s sold thousands of Tavors over the weekend. Folks, that’s a $2k rifle. You can imagine how many low-end AR’s are finding new homes in the rush to tool-up against terrorism, further fueled by the assault media’s decision to come out of the gun confiscation closet, ahead of Hillary Clinton’s potential election. There’s a lag between wholesaler supply and what you see at your local gun store. That means . . .

you’ll still see guns on the shelves for the time being. But for how long?

According to Kassner “It’s already an enormous sales surge. If there’s another event like San Bernardino it’ll be off the charts . . . There’s no way the industry will be able to keep up.” When a wholesaler told Kassner “we can’t plan on that” the Israeli executive disagreed. “I told him this is the new reality. It’s a question of when, not if.” You have been warned.

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108 Responses to Post San Bernardino Gun Sales Surge Drains U.S. AR Supply

  1. I bought the last M&P 15 my LGS had last Saturday. Store was packed. My wife wanted a Ruger 10/22 Takedown. Last one in store as well. Salesman said don’t let go of it. The store was packed. Old. Young. All races. It was awesome.

    • No, they’re waking up to the fact that there is an all out assault by the government and the media to keep them from getting personal protection. It’s for the children. But while the buying is good, and before it is too late.

      Or maybe not. Here in California (as was the case in NY and Conn.) I am waiting for the state government to pass a bill declaring ALL ARs and AKs to be contraband, irrespective of the date of manufacture or sale, and demand that we turn in our “assault weapons”–without compensation. At the least they will demand that ALL be registered, even if acquired prior to the long arm registration law effective Jan 1, 2015, even if home built. Failure to do so may result in a criminal possession of an unregistered assault weapon.

        • The law will pass, and stand. The Supreme Court hearing that we lost last week was BIG. It essentially green lit AWBs as a “reasonable regulation”.

          Nothing will happen if it does pass, and if it does happen you’ll only succeed in branding the rest of us as Terrorists in the eyes of the public.

          You will comply, and you will bitch on the internet. Beyond that? You won’t do anything.

        • We didn’t lose a court case, SCOTUS simply chose not to hear it. They’re not the same. If anything, I’d venture to say they’re refusing to hear the case because they’d be craming both feet down their throats because of the Heller decision.

        • It’s already happened in NY (must be registered for now, but cannot ever be passed down so it’s effectively confiscation with a long tail). Politicians are not being shot.

          Though a few are being indicted, if that’s anything.

      • “Without compensation” would immediately run afoul of very explicit and unambiguous constitutional protection against precisely such a thing. It would get slapped down in courts in no time.

        • Umm, no. There is no right of compensation for contraband seized by the government. Or declared to be a nuisance by the government. It is not an ex post facto law. Your only remedy to avoid confiscation through a mandatory turn in is to sell out of state.
          This is why the SF and LA and (soon to be) Oakland ordinances outlawing 10+ round mags within county borders will be upheld. If they can do it locally, they can do it state-wide. If Highland Park, Il. can ban ARs and get away with it, there is nothing to stop any locality (absent pre-emption laws) or state from enacting similar legislation. All of these anti-gun jurisdictions are going to go full retard and dare us to challenge the laws in court. And given the nature of the 2d, 3rd, 4th and 9th circuits, plus the new precedent in the 7th, their laws will probably prevail, so that people can “feel safer.”

        • >> Your only remedy to avoid confiscation through a mandatory turn in is to sell out of state.

          That was exactly my point. They can’t just declare guns illegal overnight and confiscate without any compensation. They can mandate surrender, but it must be with fair compensation to be constitutional. So “demand that we turn in our “assault weapons”–without compensation” is not going to happen. What Feinstein and Co will be pushing for is Australian-style mandatory buyback. Money isn’t really an issue, it’s not like it’s theirs in the first place. I wouldn’t even be surprised if they did something like place a hefty tax on all ammo sold in the country, and use that to fund the buyback.

      • I am waiting for the state government to pass a bill declaring ALL ARs and AKs to be contraband, irrespective of the date of manufacture or sale, and demand that we turn in our “assault weapons”–without compensation.
        Why do that…just declare all gun owners terrorists and put them on a top secret no gun list.

        • All that does is keep “us” from buying new guns. They want the ones we already have (which aren’t at the bottom of that damned lake) to go away as well. Terrorist watch list won’t do that.

  2. Little old me will be covering a gun show this weekend for my favorite fun shop, I’m a thinking it’s going to be a busy day Saturday.

  3. The night before San Bernadino I made a bulk order of ammo in anticipation of the election cycle. Half an hour after San Bernadino my wife called and told me to make another purchase. Thankfully, both orders shipped yesterday because I’m seeing the supply begin to dry up in some locations.

    Hopefully, things will settle down enough after the new year so I can make another purchase because once the election cycle ramps up the shelves will get pretty bare.

  4. I own handguns a shotgun and a few hunting rifles. I just purchased my first AR-15 today. I had to drive 1-1/2 hours across MA, west to east, to find a dealer that even had any extra M&P15 sports in stock. Then I had to put money down over the phone just so they’d hold it until I could get there today. It’s absolutely crazy here in MA, the store was standing room only. ????

    • to find a dealer that even had any extra M&P15 sports in stock

      Four Seasons does a good job of keeping up with demand.

      • Yea Ralph, I called them, they had only 2 in stock left and wouldn’t hold for anyone, first come first serve and I live way out in Western MA. I asked do you think they’ll still be one in 24 hours and they said no way lol. They said its been a madhouse! I do like their ammo prices and usually a bunch of us pool our $ together and flip a coin to see who’s gonna take the 3hr round trip.

    • I’m delighted to hear that Massachusetts, where the resistance to tyranny began, is continuing the hallowed tradition.

  5. Don’t spread this crap! We are adding a lot of new shooters right now, which is GREAT! So don’t get all of us gun owners freaking out and buying everything in sight. It took years to get back to here and 22 is still gone. Don’t buy out of fear that it will be gone…because then it will be.

    • Screw that. Buy everything you can afford and safely store, including ammunition. It will be a whole lot more difficult for the Feds (or the States) to confiscate guns from individual citizens than for them to simply board up an FFL and relieve them of remaining stock.

        • I’m not saying don’t go buy. I am always on a buying schedule. I mean STOP writing these stories about scarcity. The stories about limited scarcity end up causing wide-spread scarcity.

        • Buy M193 instead. Better terminal ballistics, better steel armor penetration (ironically), and more guns can shoot it – notably, all those bolt-actions that tend to have 1:12 twist.

          If you want a really good deal, buy Wolf Gold .223. Despite the name, the pressures – and hence the velocities – are firmly in 5.56 ballpark, according to numerous chrono tests. It’s brass-cased (I don’t reload personally, but all my friends who do say that it’s quality brass and good for reloads), boxer-primed and non-magnetic, and rounds have the cannelure and sealed primer, so it’s M193 in all but name. And it can be had for 30c/round in bulk:

          http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?item=AWG223FMJ55

          Some more info on the ammo:

          http://www.thebangswitch.com/wolf-gold-223/

        • My HD rifle has M193 loaded. I did some research also. It’s fairly effective against bare flesh. I didn’t know about the armor penetration abilities. I’ll have to check that out.

        • Thanks int19h. In stock best price at Aimsurplus at $0.29 per 1000. Everything else in .223/5.56 sold out, fwiw.

      • The shelves are going to empty out regardless. All you’re doing by hoarding is driving up prices and ensuring that newcomers are prices out of the market and never become POTG. Nobody is going to board up all the FFLs. Good freakin’ grief.

        You people laugh and sneer how Obama is the industry’s best salesman. Well, he’s selling to YOU and getting you to overpay AND screw would-be owners out of ever becoming owners. Who’s laughing now?

        • That’s one strategy they’re going to use. “Well, yeah, there’s millions more guns in the US but they’re all being bought up and hoarded by a tiny minority of gun nuts.”

        • AR building is pretty commoditized by now. Higher prices and shortages, will encourage more supply relatively quickly. Ideally, every man, woman and child on the planet would have about 10000 ARs and a few billion rounds of ammo. And still be buying more, just in case. Heck, ideally, there would be so many guns that you didn’t have to carry one around, since one would be laying in the street within a few feet any time you felt you could use one.

      • You’re right, they’ll just use a drone to take out your house instead.

        Folks, the writing is on the wall. They’re going for the “Whole enchilada”.

        I’ve frozen my spending, taken guns off of layaway, canceled two stamps and I’m selling off everything that I can move for a fair price before they’re all Illegal paperweights worth nothing but 10 years in jail and a 100K fine.

        I’m sitting here laughing my rear off at the guys who filled out 4473s for all this stuff and they think that they’ll be able to just “hide” them when the day comes. Right. You folks are just as much in the registry as I am with my stamps.

        Even if you do manage to hide them the teams won’t just go away when you say, “I sold it years ago sir”. They’ll toss your house, destroy your family heirlooms, shoot your dog, dig up your yard looking for guns, and take you to a prison camp where they can interrogate you as long as they want thanks to the NDAA and Patriot act.

        The 2nd Amendment will cease to exist with in the next 10 years. That is a fact that is pretty well accepted outside of the gun forum and blog echo chambers. We lost where it was most important. We lost the culture war. We have an open self admitted Communist running for the office of the President and he has traction! Wake up and smell the roses, it’s over boys.

        A smart man would be cashing out and looking for a new country. But most gun owners could never claim to be smart… so..

        • Men who value their free dental, their career, food on the table, and pension over your “rights”.

          You know, the same men and women who seize cash, throw you in jail for owning a plant, and shoot unarmed people in the back for walking away from them today.

          The same men who will seize a gun in a traffic stop, then force it’s lawful owner to produce a receipt proving ownership before MAYBE returning it in a month covered in rust and missing parts after you retain an attorney to go after them.

          The same men who swore not to enforce SAFE, yet are now using 4473s in SAFE act compliance raids all across NY state.

          Yeah those guys, they’re called Pigs for a reason.

        • Just 3% of US gun owners is a force over a million strong. We’re not worried, we know the female dogs such as yourself will lick our boots once they kick the tyrants to the curb.

          To be fair I don’t believe it is that time yet, nor really even close. Your chicken little act is far from true. More first time gun owners than ever, and lots of sources of actual facts on the internet for most to make their own decisions. The socialist can have his followers, they’re toothless.

        • That is the hugest crock of defeatist horse sh*t I’ve ever seen.

          Just go jump off a bridge now, so you can spare yourself any possible tribulations in the future.

        • Your optimism is nice, but demographics and public opinion are not on our side.

          Venture outside of your gun blog echo chambers and you’ll see a vast majority of people who are clamoring for our cold dead hands.

          You can call me a “female dog” all you want tough guy, the reality of the situation is that the 2nd Amendment and private gun-ownership are on life support.

          P.S. Let’s see some pics of your Post 86 non stamped machine guns if you’re such a chest thumping non comply nutter.

        • Thanks NFAMArk. You are saying things people need to hear. It is lonely out there being that voice of reality.

        • Posts some stats showing these “cold dead hands” demographics.

          PS
          I was a child in the 80’s, I had no sway on what was for dinner, let alone, federal law.

        • Bullshit! The 2nd amendment is going nowhere. Ok so then screw the second and just pass a law saying guns are illegal. Who’s coming to take them? I’m not turning mine in and I doubt to many other gun owners will either.
          The first revolution was won with like 3% of the population and that 3% had about 10% support of the population. The “pigs” as you call them, who will be taking our guns, won’t last the first day of door kicking in a lot of conservative states. That’s even if they decided to follow orders.
          The last civil war was bloody, the next one would make that look like an argument in the neighborhood park. If you live in some commie hellhole of a state then move away.

  6. The surge is for everything. I was in a LGS the other say looking for True Oil, and overheard that there is no supply of Ruger LC9s or LC40s in the state. I bought a pistol for my daughter that was supposed to ship yesterday–but it is still in the store (in Georgia) because of a backlog of sales they can’t process. Just too busy, they say. IT should have been to her tomorrow; now it is going to be the middle of next week.

  7. This is just speculator action. People who missed the post-Sandy Hook run up and windfall profits think this is their second chance.

    They’ll buy up everything in sight. When the coming ban never comes and the post-Christmas credit card bills do come, the bottom will fall out and they’ll dump these on the market like they did last time.

    My advice: relax. If you personally want a gun, go buy one before the prices surge. If you’re too late, wait a few months and prices will return to normal.

    If you’re a speculator, well, good luck, but you’ll probably get burned. (It’s ok, we won’t challenge you a year from now when you’re bragging/lying about how you timed everything perfectly and made a bundle.)

    • There are still people trying to sell M855 for, like, 75-cents a round because they overpaid at a buck a round. I’m just not going to pay their crazy price just because they overpaid. And don’t show me a picture of the price tag from Dick’s. I don’t care.

      • It amuses me to see how many vendors on Gunbroker are still trying to unload their 5000 round lots of .22 ammo they have had online for a couple of years now.

        • Yeah, saw a listing for a $199 Anderson stripped lower just yesterday on Gunbroker. I kept on looking for where it said it was a 6 pack or something… nope.

          just someone parking it for the next surge, or having to make good on the last one.

  8. Oh man what am I going to do without an AR that I wouldn’t buy anyway because they are a pain in the ass to keep clean under adverse conditions? Oh, I could 80% one for about half the cost of an off the rack gun, but that would require not hating them. Instead I think that I’ll buy a Bushmaster ACR. All the ambi controls already designed in, reliable piston, plus AR extractor, magazines, trigger group, and barrels. And I can homebrew an AK mag lower when I want to play around in the shop.

    • Also, now is a really good time to start picking up AK parts kits. I have a feeling that the government will eventually ban their importation.

    • You know, I used to think the same thing about ARs. I bought and build 7 AKs before I even touched an AR, for the same reasons. Then when the AR market fell out, I said what the hell, and built a PSA Premium 16″ midlength, using one of the CHF/CL FN barreled uppers. I treat it the same as my AKs, which is to say for cleaning it just gets a bore snake, and a quick wipe of the BCG. It gets lubed with diesel oil. It gets fed a steady diet of steel case Wolf.

      That thing has never failed from the very first round and has totally changed my opinion on AR reliability.

      The thing about ARs seems to be that if you prefer a reliable rifle, you want a little loose fit between the lower/upper, and not a super tight BCG. For these reasons, it seems that the high dollar, super tight builds seem to be much more finicky than the rattle traps.

      • The unreliability of the AR is over blown Internet BS. The AR is G2G.

        All mechanical things can break; I’ve seen AKs and SKSs lock up before. Hell, I’ve broken a revolver, and according to the internet, revolvers never break.

        BTW, Diesel oil, huh? I use high temp bearing grease. Do you find the oil runs off, that has always my issue with oil, it doesn’t stay put.

        • Some of the smoothest operation I get out of a firearm is with lithium grease, but it seems to attract powder when shooting cheaper ammunition. Oil doesn’t have the same issues.

          A quality motor oil has good film adhesion and will generally stay where it’s put, even if some runs off. The rails and bolt camming surfaces on my AR and AKs always still have a film on them even after sitting in the safe for weeks.

          I use either Delo or Rotella, whichever I last filled my Jeep with. Either way a quart is like $6, will last forever when just used for guns, and is a higher quality lubricant than CLP etc.

        • Castrol, their synthetic or high mileage, clings great . Doesn’t burn off bad either. It stays around.

      • I totally wore out an extractor shooting just steel case from mine, started getting occasional stuck cases. Like literally, the hook wore smooth. To be fair it also took a couple thousand rounds. One of those BCM extractor ring kit thingies probably would have helped by keeping more tension on the case.

        • Yeah the AR extractor is a bit flimsy, but having a handful of spares is well worth it for the ammo savings.

          Same deal with any additional wear on the barrel from bimetal jacketed bullets. If I have to rebarrel the upper in 10k rounds, who cares. It paid for several new barrels in savings.

          I just avoid Tula, have had a ton of QC issues with them. None with any Wolf/Barnaul/Bear which are all from the same plant now.

  9. Unless you are shooting in bullseye competitions go with a Mini-14. The latest incarnation is very close to the AR in accuracy. It is probably the equal of the less expensive models. And besides without a thingy that goes up it won’t scare the faint hearted.

    • As an “AWB backup”, I’d first get Kel-Tec SU-16, especially the A model (with longer non-threaded barrel). It also doesn’t look “evil”, and yet it takes standard AR magazines.

      • I have several thousand rounds through an SU-16, without issue at all. It’s not a sniper rifle, but more than adequate for any semi auto use I foresee being in my future.

        ARs are great, at their current state of perfection probably the greatest rifle and caliber ever created for “military” type use. But the good ones are pricey, and nowadays even simpler weapons like the Kel-Tec is “good enough” for those of us who aren’t exactly Marine Corps grade riflemen. And in Cali, I don’t even want to begin figuring out what parts of an AR has to be crippled in order for me to be able to buy it.

        • Ares SCR is also an interesting option, especially since the upper is stock AR, and the lower is mostly stock, so you can have fancy forends etc, and generally better quality than a Kel-Tec (and if you already have an AR, you can just get the lower + BCG).

  10. I just received my second AR, and it was free with a life membership to CCA Texas.

    I’ve always wanted a Tavor though, so might better get one while they’re still available.

    • As possibly the biggest Tavor fanboy around, I say GO FOR IT! I love mine more than… um, let’s go with tamales. I mean, I do love tamales, but they’re no Tavor… know what? Never mind. I’ll show myself out.

    • Careful– it’s kind of addictive. You buy two aluminum lowers thinking you’ll screw one up and they both turn out fine. Can’t just leave that lower alone, so you do two builds instead of one. Then you start thinking about would polymer be easier or harder? It would make a pistol build a bit lighter…. so then you do two plastics (because you buy two on sale, thinking you’ll screw up the first one practicing but you don’t) and have a second polymer lower sitting there … looking at you forlornly because the other three lowers got built and it feels left out….

  11. meh. Got all the guns and ammo I need. Don’t even want an AR. If you’ve been paying any sort of attention for the last 50-60 years you should already have enough guns and ammo for every person in your household.

  12. ugh, so really who is buying? new shooters? folks adding more? or the people that think they can turn a profit? in november 20 million weapons were sold…….supposedly there was 300 million already owned and manufacturers are turning out 5000 a week per company. there are alot of companies that make AR’s. where are all these gun owners and why are folks not actually carrying these weapons? a rifle is useless in the safe when you need it at the store….why is ammo still scarce? especially .22 mag?

    • I figure a lot of sales are going to people who were on the fence and believed the “common sense” mantra spun out by the Antis. Now that the gun grabbers have broken cover and are calling for full on confiscation, the fence sitters are off the fence and buying guns. The number of gun owners is growing.

  13. I glad I live in free america so I can get normal capacity magazines as well as an AR15 and as many as I want.

  14. Well,
    That’s one way to keep those firearms out of the hands of terrorists and the Feds!

    Went the AK route myself, but was thinking of snagging an AR, just because there’s room in the safe for it…ever since that horrible boating accident when all arms went down with the ship and all….

    • I see they were searching a CA lake this afternoon. Ain’t no way I’d go into the water with all the guns laying on the bottom in a haphazard manner.

  15. Just from looking at the online guns stores; it seems the AKs are sort of overlooked in the stampede for ARs. A lot of AR models are sold out.
    Last weekend I was at Rural King and one of the salesman was stating that Sunday was a very busy day for gun sales.

    • Nope. Look at Atlantic. Most of the popular models of AK are sold out, and they put up a Red Flag banner about high order volume the on Tuesday after the President’s address.

      Davidson’s website (large distributor) went to goose-eggs on many items during the week, as well.

  16. I am starting to see lowers going stupid cheap, I picked the one I have wanted for about 2 months up for $5.00 more than it was 2 months ago. Going to keep an eye open for deals. I have two “extra” AR’s I plan on unloading on the local market if prices get stupid again. So far looks like they are up about 10% from pre-San Bernadino

  17. Stocked up on ammo. Filled at 40mm can with .308, 2 50cal cans with .40 S&W, and 1 50cal can of 45ACP. That’s 1140 rds of .308, 1000 of 40SW, and 1000 of 45ACP. Somehow, I still feel like it’s not enough.

  18. Good thing I’m only looking for another shotgun. I need to go 50 miles to shoot an AR legally and I can’t hunt with it here. And I don’t plan on a long-range gun battle(I hope!). Slugs are good for my defense needs…

  19. A perusal of Gunbroker reveals gun sellers got plenty of AR’s-and very few selling ’cause the sellers have raised prices/reserves sometimes to SILLY levels. And I mainly looked at common lower-priced stuff from Ruger,S&W,DPMS,Del-Ton and others. So order on the interwebz if you gotta’ have it…

  20. One pump action 12 gauge 18.5″ barrel, 00 buck/slugs, one .380 pistol, 90 gr. FMJ. No intention of buying anything else. Better, in my opinion, to have one long gun and one side arm, and be proficient with them than have half a dozen or more. Keep it simple if home/vehicle/self defense is your primary concern. Terrorism, foreign or domestic, is guerilla warfare against unarmed civilians. It will not be a fistfight. Even armed there is no guarantee you will survive, being unarmed is a sure way to die. Just buying a firearm does not make you safe, knowing how to use it might.

  21. Yeah, there’s a lot of fast dirty water swirling around the Bay…it’s getting to people. This lady starts talking to me about Nephilim (Biblical giant types) and how they (the Nephilim) will be coming back and raising hell.

    I process all this and say “David killed one with a stone from a sling, right ?” She just looks at me but nods her head. “Well how do you think they’ll hold up against a .308 ?” See, another problem solved by John C. Garand.

  22. A new Ruger 556 found its way to my home. Didn’t need it or have to have it. But what the hey.
    Just adding to the numbers.

  23. Hopefully the post Christmas bills and people owing on their taxes will dump this stuff back on the market so I can find parts to do the AR build I was planning to do this spring.

  24. Just bought a PAP M90NP, Serbian 5.56 AK that uses AR mags so I can still use my AK when the government gets around to banning more imports like it always does.

  25. I got Tavor summer time and I got another AR “just in case” about month ago. Who knows what we will see next year, investing into ammo is good idea as well.

  26. AND, in other news, the waste of oxygen occupying the White House still believes somebody will just turn in his brand new $2000 gun, if threatened by government goons.

  27. Let’s not wet ourselves or hyperventilate. Remember that ANYTHING the mainstream news media says is BS. NY Time. Wash Post, CNBC lie all the time unless they screw up. There is NO Conservative TV or newspaper/ Fox or Wash Times may occassionally get something right just to prove they aren’t totally in the tank. So assume it’s BS.

    i stand by my theory that we are largely passed the panic buying of post SandyH. Unless you’re a total unaware moron you have at least one long gun and one handgun already.

    My evidence:
    – I walked into the Brownells warehouse in Grinnell Iowa yesterday afternoon. Was only one guy in front of me. Ordered the AR parts I wanted (ON SALE). Had them in 10min and out the door. Unfortunately I left the bag on top of may car where if blew off into the Iowa River just as I was crossing the bridge. Most unfortunate.
    Brownells clerk say not seeing any big surge beyond what would expect for Christmas season and shotgun deer season just opened (in Iowa).

    – Brownells website is loaded with AR parts http://www.brownells.com/rifle-parts/
    – Midway website is loaded with AR parts http://www.midwayusa.com/ar-15/

    Cabelas and Brownells websites have ammo on sale including .556/.223 and .308.

  28. So, wonder how many of those people buying are new gun owners that have a clue which end the bullet comes out of. And for those adding another AR to their collection of 3 or more, you can only shoot one and when you are on the move, you ain’t gonna carry all. Hope you got a hidey hole with a cache in place.

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