11 Feb

COSS Show, OP.50 Redux, Best Part of Vegas

Steven K. Ledin,

I had to choose a cross-section of products to display at our first show event, the Chicagoland Outdoor Sports Show (COSS). One of the main attractions was to be the OP.50. I built it originally for display, not any kind of real use. But forces prevailed upon me to make it visible for this venue. The above picture shows it as the main attraction in our front foyer. When I took it down off the custom brackets made from flat screen TV brackets, It started to fall apart. Disintegrate, really. I had to restake the suppressor, the gas block, the forend, the barrel, and everything else attached to it. Keep in mind that this is not a real gun, just an airsoft platform to show the modularity of the AR-type guns, and lots of the gear we sell. I had to take it all apart and put it back together, repurposed. Better, stronger, faster, just like the 6 Million Dollar Man.

And a transport box and shooting bench, as well.

The object was to garner new email addresses from attendees, because this was a new demographic for us; the fishing crowd. This was mostly a fishing show.

I chose about 300 products of varying prices, but mostly go-fast, quality products on the gun side. I also displayed eyewear, fishing, reloading, outdoor, and all related categories. We opened up the eyes of a lot of folks that hadn't heard of OP before, and this is new to us, because wherever else we go, everyone knows us.

Setting up was new to us. Of course, you can't do too much by yourself, it requires union workers to do pretty much anything. Plugging in an electrical cord from the ceiling may cost 200 bucks.

We hired two beautiful and scantily clad models to help attract new customers, and they were great, but the OP.50 gathered more attention than both girls put together. What does that tell you about the male psyche?

Then we had to put stuff away. This ultimately took the next week. Many people will reap major benefits of buying demos. This is often what makes a product a demo. Take it out of the box and show it. Buy the demos, folks. Always great buys. I do it all the time.

I never forget to make time to relax and cook. I find it one of the most therapeutic exercises I do.

And I take time to smell the flowers. A lot of folks have it much harder than we do. Case in point, my new friends C and J and Magic from Vegas.

I befriended C, J, and Magic at SHOT in Vegas. I passed them on the street the first day on my way to the convention center. The dog got me, of course. I'm such a knucklehead, I asked them if I could pet their dog. They said yes, and we started talking, Magic slobbering all over me. Ambrosia when you're away from home. The four days I spent time with them was an eye opener, for sure. I was able to learn a lot about street people, or at least them. I could write a lot about this, but even though I have their permission, it seems kind of intimate, and private. Getting to know them was the best part of my whole Vegas trip. Sometimes all it takes is for a bad page to be turned, and you become one of the very unfortunate ones. Believe me, there are many kinds of bad pages, and they can be turned on anyone. Keep C, J, and Magic in your thoughts. Gotta love the dogs.


About Steven K. Ledin

Steve has never not known guns. Before motorcycles, money, or girls, they have always been part of his life. He was tenured as General Manager of one of the country’s largest gun stores and ranges, a buyer in a big box sporting goods store, and is currently OpticsPlanet’s Director of Product Intelligence. He was a US Navy gunners mate, and is an NRA certified instructor in ten categories, as well as an Illinois CCW instructor. He shoots competitively and has hunted from Alaska to Africa. He thoroughly loves life with his beloved wife, Shirley, and their three wildish dogs Tinker, TranRek (pronounced “Train Wreck”), and Crash Almighty. He is a stubborn stage 4 cancer survivor not yet ready to cash in his chips.

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