Traditional Archery Discussions on the Leatherwall


My favorite bow shop looks to be closing

Messages posted to thread:
T4halo 23-May-18
Nemophilist 23-May-18
Riverwolf 23-May-18
Knifeguy 23-May-18
tecum-tha 23-May-18
Babysaph 23-May-18
Nemah 24-May-18
Wapiti - - M. S. 24-May-18
longshot 24-May-18
RonG 24-May-18
George D. Stout 24-May-18
Ollie 24-May-18
Jimbob 24-May-18
Babysaph 25-May-18
Bowguy 27-May-18
David Mitchell 27-May-18
S. North 28-May-18
RymanCat 28-May-18
George D. Stout 28-May-18
SteveD 28-May-18
rallison 28-May-18
David Mitchell 28-May-18
George D. Stout 28-May-18
Babysaph 28-May-18
David Mitchell 28-May-18
Dan W 28-May-18
Theolithic71 28-May-18
quietmiss 29-May-18
Ollie 29-May-18
David Mitchell 29-May-18
Live2hunt 29-May-18
From: T4halo
Date: 23-May-18

T4halo's embedded Photo



Got bad news today, my local bow store is closing. Not enough guys buying sporting goods at local places. All on-line purchases are killing mom and pop stores. They have a nice Fox longbow on consignment I might get for a very reasonable price. The did have a little box of goodies to sell me.

T4

From: Nemophilist
Date: 23-May-18




I know how you feel. I hated when Screaming Eagle of Pittsburgh closed up. Roger Rea was a good guy to deal with.

From: Riverwolf
Date: 23-May-18




Supply and demand ...Its sucks seeing all the little shops go for sure , but operation cost and such can't give the customers the prices that everyone demands when shopping ...and so it goes.

Its not the Big companies fault so much as it is you and I looking for the best deals to be found on what ever we purchase..Most times (not always but most) large retail companies get us what we want cheaper than anyone else ......

Still , someones making and selling the products we want ...just (usually) a larger retail operation can make the deals and pass the savings onto we the consumer......as they say, that's business .

From: Knifeguy
Date: 23-May-18




I feel your pain. The saddest day in my archery "adulthood" was when the St. Charles family closed their shop. I spent a good amount of time and money there. Some of my best memories of my wife came out of that store! Lance

From: tecum-tha Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 23-May-18




A lot of these shops just want to sell you the same stuff as the big box stores do and sometimes at a lot higher price point. No wonder that their business model is not working. People will go there if they can stuff they want that the big box stores don't carry. No creativity will push you out of business pretty quick. Instead of opening an online store themselves in order to be able to serve more than their immediate area, they fold the towel as their business model is not sustainable.

From: Babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 23-May-18




Can't blame someone for going where it's cheaper. I do that myself .

From: Nemah
Date: 24-May-18




Terrible feeling. After Northwest Archery (Glenn St. Charles shop) closed, I took up drinking again. Richard

From: Wapiti - - M. S. Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 24-May-18




It seems more & more shops are closing its sad to see this happen.

From: longshot
Date: 24-May-18




I would always choose local business over online even if it costs a little more (within reason) simply because I like to look at and touch/feel my stuff before I buy. My biggest problem isn't cost but selection. Small brick and mortar stores simply don't/can't keep the variety in stock and though I'll pay for what I want, I only want what I want.

From: RonG
Date: 24-May-18




I have a very large archery store next to me and when I need a glue on point, feathers, wood arrows, shooting gloves or anything related to trad, I have to order it because they are strictly compound and stock nothing else.

Around Christmas time they will stock a couple kids longbows or recurves.

Everyone needs to support their local shops.

When I do order I don't use 3 rivers or Lancaster if I can order from one of the smaller shops that advertise.

From: George D. Stout Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 24-May-18




The issue is simple for very small business. First, understand how they have to buy....many times from the same suppliers we can buy from, because they can't afford minimum direct buys from the manufacturer.

Compound bows are still 90% of the business so that is where the profit is...not in the twenty guys or so in the county who shoot traditional equipment. Traditional archery specialty shops are for guys who have it as a side business that isn't their main line of income.

Selection, as mentioned above is difficult if you are a mom and pop store. You can rarely have what everyone wants or needs. At one time you could, before the 100 different brands of carbons arrows, nock sizes...models...styles, and then trying to cater to the niche groups. Good luck with that.

I can think of a very few business opportunities in this day and age that would be profitable for a very small business. Archery isn't one of them.

From: Ollie Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 24-May-18




I can't help but think that many of the small traditional archery shops are more of a "hobby business" because making a decent living would be very, very tough when you have to compete with online ordering. The upside to having a small business is traveling to different archery events and being able to write off expenses as a business deduction on your taxes.

From: Jimbob
Date: 24-May-18




My favorite bow show closed up a few years back. Lots of good memories were made there. I not only learned to shoot a bow there, make arrows, and drink beer, but learned a lot of life lessons from the crusty old bowhunters that hung out there. Well, but we still have Cabela's and Bass Pro that will try to sell you all the wrong stuff that you don't really need because the people who work there really don't know a thing. A friend of mine went to Cabela's and bought a Martin X200 recurve (nice bow). They sold him a dozen 400 spine arrows with 100 grain tips. They cut the arrows to 28 inches. Those arrows came out of that bow sideways they were so stiff! I have the arrows now because I felt sorry for the guy and made him up some properly spined arrows, and now he can actually hit the target! A proper bow shop with knowledgeable people working there will save the novice money in the long run and might actually help turn them into an ARCHER.

From: Babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 25-May-18




And let's face it. We put them out of bidness.

From: Bowguy Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 27-May-18




The compound guys are really gonna feel it. Who’s gonna set up their bows? Who’s gonna change a string or cables? Who’s gonna retime them? Some of those guys set up their own bow but a press is about a grand I think for a good one. You need the knowledge too. I’ve set up many but they’ve got probs. We contributed too, many custom bow guys buy say cedar arrows, a glove through 3rivers, most don’t sell glue on broadheads, etc . Even if we did use them what would you buy? A dozen carbons? They prob don’t have the types most guys use. Feathers 5”? Birzenberger? That stuff isn’t in most stores either. Kinda of our/their fault. We don’t patronize the stores, they don’t have what we buy.

From: David Mitchell
Date: 27-May-18




I prefer to deal with people directly (locally) if at all possible who belong to my community, who know their merchandise, and can give me the opportunity to have some hands-on before buying. Yes, it will cost more but it's worth it to me to support my local shops and keep more money in the local economy. Several years ago there was a great little specialty outdoor outfitter here in Charleston that dealt in top quality back packing, camping, canoeing, fly fishing gear as well as quality outdoor clothing, boots, etc. I wanted to buy a particular tent which they had. One of the staff set it up on the floor of the shop so I could crawl in, check everything out and make sure it was going to work for me. Try that on-line. They had a box built that would hold a sleeping pad--they had rocks in it. You could actually try out a sleeping pad you were considering by placing it in that box and climbing in. Try that on-line. Finally she had to give up and throw in the towel. People would come in there, see the stuff they were interested in, try it out, then go home and order on-line. Now the great benefit of that shop and the expertise of the staff are gone along with the money and taxes going back into the local economy. I have a buddy who often says, "The best price is not always the best deal." I think he's right.

From: S. North Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 28-May-18




Game Bag in Imperial Mo was ours. Sad day when it closed. Pat and Bob had a great shop

From: RymanCat
Date: 28-May-18




I certainly feel your pain mine just closed couple months back too. Health issues God bless the Shaws. Lord watch over Mike and Sue and help them.

From: George D. Stout Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 28-May-18




""I prefer to deal with people directly (locally) if at all possible who belong to my community, who know their merchandise, and can give me the opportunity to have some hands-on before buying.""

So would a lot of us, however, you won't find such places where I live, and that is nothing new. We never did have full service archery stores around here until after the compound came along, then it was 99% compounds. It's just the evolution of the sport that did away with local traditional shops. Back in the 60's, it was no different, what we needed we normally had to buy from Feline, Anderson, or Kinseys.

We had one shop in the 60's and into the 70's BC, and they only had two bow brands and a limited supply of accessories. We bought what we could from them but overall it was still minimal. That shop was run by the lady of the house as an aside.

Mail order isn't even close to being a new thing. If you have local archery shops that have plenty of goods, then you're golden. If you live near 3Rivers, or Kustom-King, they are still local entities for folks around that area, and they still support the sport and provide jobs. Buying from them supports their local economy too.

From: SteveD Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 28-May-18




Some shops in my area years ago used to have a few item related to the "trad" archer but by and large my experience has been what George mentioned

Nowadays with the crossbow allowed there is little or nothing at all, except maybe arrow shafts or having them cut to length if needed.

From: rallison
Date: 28-May-18




I posted the same about "our" local store about a month ago. I was stunned at a LOT of responses I got...I'd thought "trad" guys would've had a bit of loyalty to a local guy.

From: David Mitchell
Date: 28-May-18




You'd think so.

From: George D. Stout Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 28-May-18




Many of us never had that 'specialty' shop like some of you do. It has nothing to do with supporting the local guy. You should consider yourself dang lucky if you have that. 3Rivers is a local shop to many folk, so is Lancaster and Kustom King, and Lost Nation, and RMSGear. So rather than think everyone but you is an unsupporting pinhead, you should be happy you have an opportunity to begin with. Many or most of us never had that.

From: Babysaph Professional Bowhunters Society - Associate Member
Date: 28-May-18




I agree Dave. The best price is not always the best deal.

From: David Mitchell
Date: 28-May-18




I don't think that way at all, George. If you knew me you would know that I do not consider myself a snob of some sort and everyone who doesn't think my way is a pinhead. I simply believe that it's good to support local business when there is one that supplies what you need. That's all I'm saying. Chill, brother. :o)

From: Dan W
Date: 28-May-18




There used be TWO archery shops and one firearms shop right here in Berkeley, CA (Yes, my brothers, BERKELEY!). All long gone; the "Bow Rack" moved from Solano Ave. out to San Pablo, CA, where I bought my first several bows and my oldest son's first bow. Fitted up personally by Norm Malonee, old buddy of Fred Bear and total, experienced and professionl expert in "Trad" archery.

Of course, they had moved to mostly compound bows. Like my friend whose guitar store sells mostly electric guitars ("acoustic" - the "trad" guitars of the music biz!) and then finally the Bow Rack moved further out, Martinez I think- and less than a year later totally out of business. Oh yes, no more brick-and-mortar sheet music stores either. You download stuff, then print it yourself! The un-invention of the music printing biz.

Times change, the nature of the universe- good things, not so good things.

From: Theolithic71
Date: 28-May-18




I've tried to buy from my local shop that carries almost nothing suitable for traditional.

After I heard "special order fee" from the guy 3 times in a row, I'm done trying to help. I'll go there for stuff I know he has on the shelf but that's it.

My teens shoot compound and are left handed. Heard the same "special order fee" for left handed gear he doesn't stock.

From: quietmiss
Date: 29-May-18




I read a couple of times about not using 3 Rivers because it is not a small shop. I don’t know the full history of their store but believe is a family owned business? In which case more than likely started as a small shop? I for one am grateful to be able to use them and consider them a small shop. They certainly are not big box store as a true big box store will have nothing, you as a traditional archer, will want.

From: Ollie Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 29-May-18




George makes a good point...it is pretty tough to support your local archery shop if you don't have one nearby or if they don't carry anything that you want/need. I grew up in Louisville, Kentucky in the late 1960's early 1970's. We had two decent archery shops in the area that I was aware of...Davis and Sons located in downtown Louisville and Fred Pape's store out near Waverly park.

From: David Mitchell
Date: 29-May-18




quuietmiss, 3Rivers started in the garage of the original owner as a side line business. It grew to occupy their spare bedroom, and they had to seek larger facilities. He moved to downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana into a former appliance store building. The business continued to grow. Dale Karch then purchased the business. They now have the business located in Ashley, Indiana. 3Rivers is a story of hard work and making a success out of a business started in a guy's garage. I learned this history from the original owner when I visited the shop when we went to visit our son's family Fort Wayne. And yes, it is still family owned. The Karch family are good folks.

From: Live2hunt
Date: 29-May-18




To have a Trad Shop now days, you have to provide on-line sales also to stay alive. For me it's a 2 hour drive to the nearest Trad Shop (The Footed Shaft). Buying on-line is a savior.





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