A Nurse with a Gun

Friday, January 09, 2009

Pawn Shop Circuit: Priorities

At Kenny's pawn shop, I found a Star Model A Super today. It's a little unusual to find old mil-surp weapons in pawn shops around here, but there it was. I'm not all that well versed in Star pistols, other than the Model B and the Model BM, both of which are 9mm parabellum. I own a star Model B and a Model BM, both purchased as surplus. They have been decent guns. Whether or not this pistol was 9mm Largo or not was pertinent. As far as I know, no American manufacturer provides 9mm Largo ammunition.

Kenny's Star Model A Super was in decent enough shape, with the original unchipped wooden grips. I turned it over in my hands trying to remember whether it was chambered in parabellum or 9mm Largo. The pistol had some sort of lever set into the right side. I had no idea what the function of that was. I discovered later that it was a retro-fitted takedown lever, part of which makes a Super super. Another thought that came to mind is that parts for Star mil-surp pistols have become as scarce as turtle teeth. Finally, next to the importer's mark, I saw the caliber. 9mm Largo. Last year, these pistols were surplused for $139. Kenny was wanting $209 for the old pistol. I handed it back to him.

I drove over to Wal-Mart, and after several minutes, found a parking place. At the ammunition counter inside, I spied four 100 round boxes of Winchester "white box" 45 ACP. "I'll take all four of the forty five auto, and one of the .38 specials" I told the matronly clerk, pointing to the boxes. A yellow tag reading $38.86 was on the shelf beneath them. This was going to hurt, but not as bad as it might next month.

The clerk stooped down to retrieve the boxes, and as she did, she revealed four more behind them. "Tell you what ma'am, I'll take all eight of those," I said.

Placing them on the counter, she asked "Still want the .38s?"

"No, I'll pass on the .38s today," I replied.

As she rang up the ammunition, I remarked that they may be back down to twenty bucks a box next month. "I wouldn't plan on that," she told me. The total came to $255.76 plus tax. As I wheeled my loaded down buggy out the automated doors, the math wasn't adding up in my head. Driving home, I looked at my receipt. I had been charged $31.97 a box for the ammunition. "Just in time," I whispered.



Anonymous Alex said...

Apparently, there isn't any Winchester White box 9 mm to be found at Wal-Marts in SC and stores have no idea when they will get in more. I wonder what is going on.

6:51 PM  
Anonymous Charliee said...

Dang, You need to start reloading

10:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too bad you don't have the time to reload. I find it a fun and relaxing hobby.

By reusing my own and others brass and even buying the cast lead bullets, I've got the price down to $9 for a hundred rounds of .45 acp. It's the only way I can afford to shoot my 1911 clone much anymore.


10:24 PM  
Anonymous ditto said...

I used to reload on an old RCBS rock chucker. It took a while to get enough .45 to shoot in the local matches.
Then I bought a Lee 1000 progressive reloading press. That got me started on the reloading road (superhighway). Next the RCBS piggyback, then the Hornaday Projector and finally the Dillon 650.
If you have never tried reloading, think about it. If nothing else, it will give you another excuse not to shop at walmart.

For the same money you would be loading a couple thousand rounds of .45

4:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't mean to offer unwanted advice, but you should go back to Walmart, and report the error. It's the honest thing to do. If you owned the store, wouldn't you want your customers to report mistakes?

Besides, I'm a firm believer in karma. If you do dishonest things, bad luck will soon follow.

6:09 AM  
Blogger Xavier said...

No. Don't even go there. Asking for a higher price than the one you were given at the register is not dishonest. The ethical components of malice are absent. You are welcome to send Wal-Mart the difference though.

I do not believe in karma. I've seen too many good people die and evil people live to believe in karma. Bad things do not happen to specific people because they happened to trigger some cosmic Pachinko machine by doing something bad. Such ideas are only superstitious searching for someone to blame when things occur that we want to avoid or reoccur in the future. Bade things usually occur because a person ignored their intuition, denied reality, or believed "it can't happen to me." By bad things, I am talking injury and death, not losing twenty bucks in a card game.

6:29 AM  
Blogger Mulliga said...

I flat out could not shoot my AR-15 if I didn't reload. It is admittedly very time-consuming, though - I try to do brass prep while watching football on TV.

1:48 PM  
Anonymous FatWhiteMan said...

I've been accused of shooting up ammo just so I could reload it.

8:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wal Mart often has things marked down lower than the price on the tag.
I doubt a mistake was made at all.

10:42 PM  
Blogger Janir said...

$31 a box or 100 is roughly right.
I'm my neck of the woods, 100 rd of wally world WWB 45 Auto costs $29.95 + tax. Price hasn't changed for that in months.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

Checked my local WM this afternoon. The only handgun ammo remaining was two boxes of .357 SIG. WTH? Better head to the Georgia Arms table next weekend.

6:19 PM  
Blogger The Saj said...

"Don't mean to offer unwanted advice, but you should go back to Walmart, and report the error. It's the honest thing to do. If you owned the store, wouldn't you want your customers to report mistakes?"

$31+ has been the standard price for a 100 white box of .45ACP.

So if anything, Walmart decided to jack the price by $7 or 22% (just think of what your rent would be with a 22% price hike).

I'd wager either they put the Winchest White Box on the Remington JHP spot (which go for about $36-$38). Or they are in the process of updating the prices. And the old boxes that Xavier picked up were still in at the $31.

No bad Karma...

In fact, I am not sure you can get bad karma via a discount from Walmart. Other than the fact that you are shopping at Walmart = bad karma in and of itself. *lol*

9:52 AM  
Blogger Stonyman65 said...

Don't feel bad. I do the same thing. I've spent a least a grand on WWB .45s in the last year. Ammo is getting pricey and that Dillon press is looking better and better with every round fired. Now all I need is the $1500 to get a basic reloading setup rolling.

10:29 PM  

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