Showing posts with label Frontier Firearms. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Frontier Firearms. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Frontier Firearms and CCA Outpost

I was out in Kingston last week, so I stopped by Frontier Firearms and the Coal Creek Armory Outpost location. This isn't meant to be an in depth review of either location - just some comments from a guy who stopped by each for a few minutes.

Frontier Firearms
I had only been to the old Frontier store once, but the new building is clearly an improvement. First of all, it is new - new things are shiny and that obviously has some appeal by itself. It is big - the retail space is much larger than CCA. It is too bad I didn't need a holster because they have a ton of them. There was also the usual assortment of knives, flashlights, cats, cleaning supplies, bags, etc. (Caught that did ya? There are a few cats that get the run of the place. You'll be looking in a display case and see a small furry one staring back at you.)

As for guns, they had a good selection of long guns. I didn't do a count, but it seems like they currently had fewer handguns than I remember seeing at the old store.

There were three guys working and I spoke to two of them. No one was on the range, but one of the guys was kind enough to light it up and demo the active targets. The range is definitely an upgrade from those at CCA and Gunny's. Both guys were helpful without being pushy. (On my first visit to the old store, they were very helpful in discussing options/pros/cons for a potential AR-15 purchase. They were very patient with my newbie - low speed, high drag - questions.)

I know of several instances of people who have driven the extra miles to get to Frontier due to the company's reputation for good customer service. In fact, my father-in-law skipped by Gunny's and CCA to make his last handgun purchase at Frontier.

Coal Creek Armory Outpost
The Outpost is a small shop. They have a small retail space that currently has some shelves for various gun accessories. They cannot sell guns yet from this location - they are still waiting on the paperwork to make it through the process. According to the guy that was minding the store, they were about two weeks away from getting the approval. (Maybe less now at the time of this post.) He was very friendly and probably would have been happy to chat had I stuck around longer.

The range reminded me of the Lovell Road CCA location, but the new lights make a difference as it seemed nice and bright. There were five or six lanes.

No cats were spotted at the Outpost. There isn't a lot to say since they aren't up to full speed yet.

My Thoughts
Before I share my thoughts... a couple of points of reference.

  • I'm all for competition. 
  • I'm too big of chicken to run my own shop, so I am no expert on running a small business.
  • I believe the goal of business is to make money.
I can only assume that CCA wants the entire Knoxville and surrounding area market for themselves. They are taking the fight to Frontier and must be leveraging the Knoxville store to support the Outpost operation. (I do like the Outpost name - makes lots of sense and fits perfectly.) I am guessing (complete speculation here!) that Frontier had to take on some debt and CCA thinks they could push them over the edge. If it were me, I would have expanded to an under served area like North Knoxville (Powell, Fountain City, Halls). It would build an even stronger foundation for expansions in contested areas. Opening a shop/range where there was none would also be good for the gun community, too. My biggest fear is that the expansion stretches CCA too much and the Outpost takes some of the Frontier business resulting in both businesses folding.

As with most things, time will tell.