- Dec 22, 2006
My honest opinion, show up to local matches, watch, help support the match, set up, clean, etc. Let people see your face and come to know you, they will respect your desire to learn and willingness to help. If you have a personality halfway worth a shit, people will start giving you gear, or selling it to you and significantly cheaper. I've literally have pulled brand new $250 BUIS off my carbine in the middle of a match and handed them to a teenager. He wanted them and they were pissin me off, that stuff happens all the time. Especially when dudes get pissed off. I saw a brand new Ruger SR9 get sold with holster, extra mag and pouchesfor $200 at IDPA classifier because an former expert shot marksman. People get pissed and start doing stupid shit, and that's when you want to be the liked guy, who is looking for kit that has a couple hundred buck in your wallet.
First match I went to I showed short on mags (didn't know what I didn't know); the guy behind me in line at registration literally jumped in his truck and went back to the house to make sure I had enough (plus mag pouches) to run the match.
Even if you don't get guns shoved into your hands, most folks are VERY willing to share solid, pragmatic advice. It's a far cry from the gunshow commando types who like to spout off, and much more of the type of person who cares about the sport and wants to see more people showing up to matches and succeeding. As @Diamondback 2/2 said - personality goes a long way... if you're the type of person they want coming back (ie not an assclown), they'll do what they can to see you come back. If they don't or if you get a negative vibe, find a different club/match.