Saturday, January 22, 2005

Tulsa Firearms

My goal today is to cause as much damage to these guys reputation as i possibly can. Since hundreds of thousands of people read my blog, i am sure that it will hurt them bad.....Real bad.

Tulsa Firearms Training Academy sucks. I mean it really sucks.

I was visiting Tulsa and had looked this place up online before i arrived. The website was crap, which actually i do not have a problem with. If the website is up to date and accurate, i really do not care what it looks like for brick and mortar family owned place. Indoor gun ranges typically strike me as that type of place.

I was able to figure out they rent guns, and they even had the guns which they rent online. This was a plus, because many of the gun range websites I have been to, do not have this feature. I saw at least one gun that I wanted to shoot online, and was pumped about getting to try it.

So Stewardess and I went to the range. I was pumped because this was the first time i was going to follow through on a promise i had made long ago. When we walked in the desk was busy, so i made my way around checking out the place, what guns they had for sell, what guns they had for rent, and showing stewardess around the place.

The guns they had for rent where all well organized sitting on a horizontal gray metal rack with the action open. I was impressed, they had a large selection, and even some items i have not seen before for rent anywhere. Plus, having them all aligned nice and neat like that made the place fell more organized. The line was not going down and once i had the feel for the place, i decided to wait in line.

In the line, they had some of the guns they were selling in a glass case. The first thing i noticed was that the tags that were attached to the gun did not have the price on the front of them. So if you were looking at the tag, you would not have any idea how much the gun was. You would have to call over a salesperson and ask them about the gun. I find that particularly annoying, because i like to get a broad overview of the prices to determine where the store fits in on the price scale. I dislike it when car places hide the prices of the car on the internet and i dislike it when i cannot find the price on the gun which out talking to someone.

When I arrived at the counter, I pulled out my wallet and told the guy that i wanted to rent a gun and shoot it on the range. He asked me if i had a membership, and i said no. He then said they only rent to members. Stewardess, being new to things and much less stubborn, took one look at me and realized i had no idea what they guy just said. She said that she knew just by looking at my face, i could not figure out what was going on. All i wanted was to rent a gun. So i repeated myself again and Stewardess explained it to me.

So i asked him how much a membership fee was. A basic yearly membership fee was 75 dollars. You still had to pay for your lane (10 dollars instead of the non member fee of 25 dollars) and ammo, but you received ammo at a slightly discounted price. The only other benefit that you received was that you could rent guns. So if i wanted to rent a gun it would have cost me over 100 DOLLARS.

I asked why they could not rent to me and he said "insurance purposes". Well when i got back home in Memphis, i called around the state. At H&H Gun Range in Oklahoma City you do not have to be a member to rent guns. The Firing Pin in Hinton, OK you do not have to be a member to rent a gun. It sounds like either Tulsa Firearms is lying or their insurance sucks. So i went back and took a look at the Tulsa Firearms website. It turns out that they did tell me about that little rule, but it was under the members section and not under the rental section.

They gave me a piece of paper with some information on it. If you are not a member and want to shoot there, you can get a 25 dollar pass for the entire day. If you want to take a friend on the lane, you will have to pay for them also. Which as it turns out several of the other gun ranges in OK do this also, but it is more reasonable (more like 7 dollars for an extra person).

They seem to cater to the regular shooter. Are they missing an important demographic? The casual shooter, who goes no more than once a month. If i had the money, i would build a indoor shooting range next door, undercut their prices (which would not be hard to do), and put them out of business.

Bastards.

cube

36 comments:

Gerald Buckley said...

Real estate in Tulsa is affordable. C'mon over and give it a whirl.

I doubt your rant is going to do anyone in Tulsa any harm at all. The only way to do that is to show up and petition this establishment in person. Hold a sign with your grievance clearly written (little words are best here) and you'll make points... Course, it could wind up with some chalk on the pavement too (ick) as unreasonable as the TFTA seems to be.

Look. I don't own a gun. Probably never will. But, I know plenty of people who do. So, to be clear, I don't have ANY ties other than locale (Tulsa) to this Training Academy place. But, on behalf of my fellow Tulsans: Dude, we're sorry you had a crummy experience in our town and wish it had gone differently. I certainly see your point and I'd just about bet the place is out of business next time you make your way here just because they ARE doing things in a bass ackwards manner.

Cubicle said...

For all i know it could be a difference in state laws (but like i said, i asked around and do not think that is the case).

Tulsa only has ONE indoor gun range, and they use that posistion to push their personal business preferences on consumers. Some of the best business models are bases on spite (The company i work for was started by two brothers after their boss and bother in law divored their sister.)

Cubicle said...

I really only have had an bad gun expericne in Tulsa.

Otherwise it has been great to me. It is a very strange place for being so normal.

JR said...

Once you figure out what gun you want, go see my buddy Marshall Luton at http://www.tdsatulsa.com/. Great bunch of guys (shooting buddies of ours at the Texican Tattler), and the best trainers in the country. Tell 'em I sent you.

Cubicle said...

thanks for the pointer, they look impressive.

Anonymous said...

I just moved here and am trying to find a good place to shoot and it looks like this blog sums up what i have found from reading other forums on the topic of gun ranges located in/around south tulsa. I didnt realize how good H&H was in OKC was until I moved here. These prices are absolutely ridiculous!It really is too bad someone doesn't open up right next to them and put them out of business...

Anonymous said...

Sorry you had a bad experience but honestly they have been nothing but great to me and the other people I have brought to the range. It is only 15 dollars to have a guest. I bought from there and got a membership. What I cant figure out if you only shoot once a month or most others only do then why did you have to do it in tulsa? If you want to trash a company I can think of more worthy companies and causes. I would think you would want to shoot in your own home town with your own gun and why rent one? Just think your rant is pointless

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with the original post here. Tulsa firearms is by far the worst run business in tulsa. I am a resident of OKC and purchased several guns from H&H gun range. There prices were competitive, they dont charge membership fees, unless you want one, which has added benefits, but for the purpose of this post we are talking about the casual shooter who just wants to rent a gun and shoot for an hour or rent a lane for an hour and shoot their own gun. My gf and I shoot at H&H in OKC and love the place. They are nice, knowledgeable and their reputation means alot to them. My gf and I went to Tulsa Fire Arms on the 21. We walked in and looked around till somebody offered to help us. There guns were not priced so I asked "how much for the GLOCK 17"? The price was $60 more than I paid for the same gun at H&H 3 days earlier. This was my first clue that this place sucked. As we walked around the place, there was roof leaks everywhere. My gf who lives in Tulsa decided to become a member so she could shoot when Im not home and I would be her guest. $75 to join, $10 per person to shoot. We didnt want to pay this especially when there are 3 great ranges in OKC are that dont nickel and dime you. We were relectantly in the process of joining, when I decided to run out to the car and get a few leftover targets that we had purchased from H&H just the day before. That comment blew my lid, I told her they were the exact same targets, from the exact same manufacture, as the ones they were selling. She said that theres were a yellowish color and mine were white. I got into argument with her and then another man that was working there, I told them that since my targets were new and white, and theres were old, and yellowed due to roof leaks that I couldnt use mine, they said yes. I was soo mad. My gf and I said just forget it, you guys are too proud of this crap shoot, and your customer service is terrible. I told them I hope somebody opens up next door to them and puts them out of business. They let us walk out the door without a word.. What a terrible terrible place. I wouldnt recommend this establishment to anybody. The closest ranges to the tulsa area are Sapulpa, and Sand Springs. Please dont get burned by Tulsa Firearms.

Anonymous said...

MAYBE YOU SHOULD TRY SAYING SOMETHING POSITIVE ABOUT ANYTHING THEN NEGATIVE ABOUT EVERYTHING. MAYBE YOU ARE JUST UNHAPPY WITH YOURSELF? JUST A THOUGHT

Anonymous said...

What a great group of people to do business with from buying and taking classes. I would say it is safe that you don't own a business. If you did you would understand free or virtually free doesn't pay the bills or employees. If I need something I just go ask I don't need to be babied. Honestly they have enough of people that go there I hardly think that they will be missing anyone who follows you.

Cubicle said...

Please note that the original post was written in 2005 (nearly 3 years ago. Almost 2008 now.)

Since then I have taken my CCW class with Tulsa Firearms and rented about four or 5 different guns.

I had a better CCW class at USA range while I lived in memphis, but what ever it takes to fulfill the law requirements. I let my membership expire, because I want to join a gun club where I have a little more freedom to draw from the holster, move and shoot, and shoot long guns.

Still pissed about not being able to rent a gun, unless a you are a member there.

Anonymous said...

Look - If you’re a monopoly it’s very easy to get lazy with your business model – but …
If you have a sub-par facility, overcharge your customers for basic services, ignore any demographic of your current (or potential) customer base, and conduct your customer service like you are the only option – YOU WILL GO OUT OF BUISNESS – it’s just a matter of time.

I am “salty” when it comes to guns and gun ranges – but DO NOT take my word for it – go to H & H in OKC - then go to Tulsa Firearms. Compare for yourself.

Tulsa Firearms – it’s just a matter of time.

Doc

Anonymous said...

i have recently transfered from memphis to tulsa and i have visited tulsa fire arms just 2 days ago. just 3 days a go i puchased and m&p 40 and was ready to shoot it before even going back to the house and since TFA is the only indoor range in town i went there. the lanes there aye narrow and they do not absorb sound very well at all. many time when i fired the casing would bounce off the wall and land some where on me, one went down into my safety glasses and 2 went down the back of my shirt. one other thing is the ammo i brought with me, accepted to every other place i have been to, they said they would not allow me to shoot because of "some chemical" on the casing so i had to buy there ammo to shoot. i also experienced the face down price tags and slow to serve employees. p.s. the town is safer than memphis but the bbq sucks

Anonymous said...

Your rant is working. I WAS, repeat WAS going to visit their business to try out a few guns and their range. Now I say screw them! A couple of pet peeves are not clearly displaying prices on merchandise and LYING to customers about "insurance" when the real reason is a greedy business model.
Treat people RIGHT and you will make friends and make money.

Anonymous said...

well i have off and on had memberships at tfa for going on 10 years. let me just say they are the ONLY game in town or they would HAVE ABSOLUTLY NO CUSTOMERS! the closest range to them is at least 30 miles and is not indoor. they have the worst coustomer service i have ever experienced in my life along with the RUDEST PEOPLE IN OUR CITY! they look down there nose at anyone who is not in there store 7 days a week spending money. if you ask a question about something they act as if your the dumbest person to ever walk through their door. the owners name is Riley Gilmore and he won the bianci cup 20+ years ago so they are still trying to ride his coat tails. as if he is someone important but i know for a fact that he put his pants on one leg at a time just like everyone else. he also hasent gotten within 100 yards of a bianci cup in at least 18 years. what kind of pathetic loser is so full of himself that they think thay are above someone? why not have a teachers heart and try to help someone learn something just for the common good of socity? so that we could in turn have respnocible gun owners instead of nieve paying customers whom we can scam out of money. also just to add alittle something that they are price goulging people on after you pay your $75 membership fee i asked if i could shoot my kel-tec plr-16 pistol .223 on the pistol range i was told no. then a quick reply of if you bring that with a pistol you have to pay 2 range fees at $10 one for the pistol range and one for th rifle range. they then proceded to tell me that the rifle range and the pistol range were two seprate busness eventhough they are both in the same room. this place is the worst bussness in the city of tulsa by far i cant understand why they have been in busness as long as they have.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with the original poster. Tulsa Firearms really takes advantage of the casuall shooter. All of my experiences with TFA have been negative. One in particular surrounds being talked down to and generally being treated like I knew nothing about guns by counter help infront of my son and another guest. I have actually driven to Oklahoma City on many occasions to shop at H&H just to avoid TFA. I have found H&H to be helpful and friendly. If Oklahoma City were closer I would shop them exclusively.

Anonymous said...

Interesting comments, for a Brit that uses the range very often I am still learning more about how you 'American folk' operate. I indeed took up a membership here as I use the range often, but please, correct me if I am wrong, a Membership means MEMBERS ONLY so no walk in off the street public? ?At my local golf club (Wentworth, Surrey) you will NEVER play a round unless you are a member and yes, you can rent clubs, but to obtain a membership entails a wait of over 7 years (maybe longer now) so I don't see what all this fuss is about?? Educate me please! Also, on pricing(s) us Brits are frugal with money, so I searched everywhere for a Springfield 9mm which was $6.00 more expensive from Tulsa Firearms, but Tusla Firearms gave me 50 rds of ammo when I purchased the gun plus a years free membership; so with those trabeables thrown in plus the saving on gas having not to drive to the other store means I was in excess of $100 bucks better off. I hope this establishment remains private as the last thing I want is to be shooting with loads of 'weekend warriors' who just got bored with watching TV.

Anonymous said...

It is the only place in town. Your plan to hurt Tulsa Firearms won't work. I used to go to their old location on 11th street in the 1970's. As a casual shooter I felt out of place, overcharged and unwelcome. Years later (2005) I found myself at the current location and was shocked to see the same electric clotheslines they had at 11th street 30 years ago. When you run the target down range and let go of the toggle switch (guessing at the distance) The target bounces around on the line for at least a minute. Unfortunately I had been to a real range in Texas with computerized chain driven targets that stop at the selected distance and stay put. At the new location I experienced the same lack of interest from employer and employees. Here's the sad news: I will probably go back because it is the only place in town. Hear that Bass Pro Shop?

Anonymous said...

I recently joined TFA in order to take their CCW class. I could have taken the class somewhere else and not been forced to join but I figured it would be nice to be able to shoot inside during the winter. I've been in twice to shoot since joining and doubt I will join again next year. The have a "better than you" attitude and they totally nickel and dime (and dollar) you to death. The other night I took in some some guns to shoot, one of which was an airgun. I asked if airguns were ok and got a quick No! like I had asked if it was ok to bang the guy's wife. What the hell? An airgun? Why would that not be ok? Not only that, I was told I either had to leave the airgun with them or take it to the truck. One day I saw a guy and a girl spend some time in the pistol range as well as the rifle range. They bought some ammo and targets as well as some other stuff (not sure what all it was) but when they tabbed out it was $132!! $40 of that was nothing but range fees! What a way to treat your customers. Most of their seem to be fairly courteous except for the one dude that packs his 1911 on one side with extra mags on the other. Whatever dude. The word "compensating" comes to mind. I had my doubts about TFA but after the airgun incident (my 2nd time there!), I'm not impressed. Red Castle gun club seems to be pretty cool, just quite a drive for me. FWIW I've been to H&H in OKC years ago and it seemed like they actually cared about their customers, both regulars and casual shooters.

Jim Day said...

The range is not bad. Nothing to write home about. It is however, the only one in this area. I was recently reminded of this by the staff. I had one of the staff be rude to me, (NOTE, THIS HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH RANGE RULES OR SAFTY) real rude, and when I called her on it and told her I haven't been talked to or treated this way here before or this way at other ranges. I was told, and I quote, "then go there". I said it's to far. Then I was told, and I quote, "then don't complain". The voice was surly and the attitude rude. Kinda like she had PMS, big time, on top of a bad day to give you an idea.
I had been a member for 11 months and spent around $2,000.00 in the pro-shop and on classes.


It's the only one around Tulsa. And they know it! Just ask them and they will tell you! But don't complain about it!

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... I am just getting back into shooting after a long hiatus but right now can only afford a budget gun-the Hi Pint C9, to be exact. I know it's a "love it or hate it" gun, but from all I've seen it sounds reliable and is definnitely within my price range. I was thinking of using TFTA for practice, but from reading these comments I'm sure I'd be put down because I wouldn't be dropping a large wad of cash in their till. I guess I'll just have to use an outdor range and shoot only when it's nice out.

Anonymous said...

I've let my membership expire a couple of times and only go back when I'm desperate for some shooting time. I've been treated rudely, ignored, and been treated like I'm less important because I don't buy custom guns. Overpriced. Lousy facility. Sounds like it is time to put some competition in the market.

Anonymous said...

I've been a member there 4 different times there, the first was within months of their grand opening many years ago.
Each time I get my membership, within minutes usually I'm so pissed off I regret doing it.

Like others here, I re-join only out of desperation to shoot.

They are rude, arrogant, etc. to say the least.

One guy in particular is like a mother hen 24/7. I don't know (nor care to know) his name, but he is one of the most asinine people I have ever met.

Also, they sold Platinum memberships good for life. They either sold or partnered up, and refused to honor any Platinum memberships.

I have been considering Red Castle for 15-20 years now, I just have a 'thing' about initiation (or new member) fees , but whatever it is, it's worth it not to have to return there.

I just recently re-joined. The first day I went there to shoot, I was seriously regretting it. Once this expires, I will never return there, even if I never get to shoot again... that's how bad it is.

Summary: go somewhere else

Anonymous said...

It's not that far to Collinsville. Medlocks has a store and range right downtown. Check out their website

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Brit,
Unlike the UK, many of us have been shooting ever since we could hold a pistol or rifle. Don't get your panties in a wad because you might have to share a facility with "casual shooters". Most of these casual shooters can shoot the eye out a squirrel at 50 yards. The only reason I ever went to this place was to get out of the winter weather. All the negative comments are right on. I have 4 new pistols and a scope I would like to sight in today. It's raining. I'll either wait, or make the 1.5 hour drive to OKC. Gun Club, LOL!

chriswtham said...

I gave up on Tulsa Firearms some years back. Far too expensive. I highly recommend Medlock Gun Range up in Collinsville. They are only about 20 to 30 minutes to the north.

Anonymous said...

Nowatta Fire Arms is also a very good alternative! They boast of having the longest indoor range in Oklahoma, and they rent 50cal, and an assortment of full autos, as well as other guns. Staff very friendly!

Anonymous said...

Nowatta huh? Good to know. I once talked to the owners at Medlock back before the range when they just had the gun store, and I was visiting home from Cali.(where i worked at an indoor range) They seemed very nice. I'm glad to hear the range is (and has been)up and running. I will have to stop in next time I am in C-ville.
Semper Fi

Anonymous said...

I too am on a mission to let people know how bad these guys are. I have been to TF numerous times and have had a membership going on 3 years now. I'd say 8 out of 10 times I leave that place so pissed off that my blood is boiling. They have the worst customer service of any establishment I've ever been to. To be blunt, they are all a bunch of assholes. I've had one guy tell me they don't allow this or that, while another tells me that it's fine. Last time I was there I got into a yelling match with en employee across as I walked through the door and the guy said, "No point in even coming in, we're full". While they were full and were going to close in and hour and a half, there's a much better way to handle the situation.

Unfortunately this is the only indoor range in Tulsa. However, they will NEVER get anymore of my money and I will gladly drive 30 minutes out of the way to another range that treats people right. Stay away from this place for sure.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree that Tulsa Firearms is the worst place in town. Prices are WAY beyond ridiculous and the staff people there are about unfriendly at best.

I would instead recommend Red Castle Gun Club... not only are their prices more reasonable but they have a far better facility, including trap and skeet, cowboy action range, etc.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the blog post. Because of it, I went and did more research and found that there's a really nice range in tulsa:
usshootingacademy.com

Tulsa Firearms lost this customer without me ever having to set foot in there!

Jonathan Vanbeber said...

It is very interesting that five years later, I am reading your rant and posting that there is another indoor range in Tulsa with very professional staff and reasonable prices: 2A Shooting Range. Their website is incomplete, but I could care less as long as they continue to cater to responsible firearm owners.

Near Admiral and Yale. You should check it out the next time you are in town. I have no connection to this range or its owners, just a veteran that had a good experience.

Anonymous said...

Tulsa firearms does SUCK! Wayyyyyyy over priced and their sales staff are dilrods.

James Johnson said...

LOL I found this blog post again this morning, and I remember reading it years ago back when I was just getting into pistol shooting.

How things have changed since then! There's another public indoor range, 2A Shooting Center, that is well lit, well ventilated, and is staffed by FAR more polite people than Tulsa Firearms ever was. Red Castle has their indoor range going too, which is only $5/visit for members.

Not only that, but if you don't HAVE to go to an indoor range you can get a day pass at USSA for $25, where instead of a lane you get your own bay.

2A and USSA will rent you guns too!

IMO there's no reason to go to Tulsa Firearms anymore. The ventilation sucks, the lighting sucks, the noise control sucks, the prices suck, the staff are rude, and there are better options now.

Anonymous said...

The idiot manager at Tulsa Firearms has no respect for the law. There is an active restraining order on him, and he continously carries his guns on his hip, inside and outside the range. Great for all other law abiding gun owners! I wonder what other laws they are ignoring!

Anonymous said...

ATF laws: if you have an active restraining order you are NOT to own, carry any guns or ammo!

Search the oscn.net website for his name Dave Randle and you'll see the restraining order!