Talking Shop: Bristol Airguns

Bristol Airguns owner David Player explains how a side trading activity has blossomed into two stores serving the Bristol area

How did you get started, and who works with you?

We used to buy and sell a few rifles and pistols as part of my Convert 2 Cash business. I realised there was a demand in the area for not just second-hand guns, so started Bristol Airguns in 2012. We have now expanded to two shops, both based in Bristol, staffed by myself, Emma and Tom.

Do you specialise in a particular area of the market?

We specialise in entry-level to what I’d call intermediate. We sell a good mix of pistols and rifles, probably 50/50. They tend to be from the likes of SMK, Crosman, Benjamin and Kral. The Sig range of pistols and rifles are proving very popular.

What trends are you seeing in the airgun market at the moment?

We’ve seen the price entry point for pre-charged pneumatics drop dramatically in the last few years, which has enabled us to grow the business further. We’ve also seen a number of people starting to collect high-end pistols, sometimes buying more than one of the same model.

What piece of advice do you give customers before buying their first rifle?

The main piece of advice I give is to look after the gun and maintain it. Wipe it down after you have finished using it – and if it’s a CO2 pistol, don’t leave any gas in for long periods. See the sport as a progression, invest time to get the most out of it and practise. But most of all, make sure you have fun.

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