Advancing Firearms Safety with Dylan Hadas of Orlando FFL

About This Episode

In today’s episode of Tactical Business, host Wade Skalsky sits down with Dylan Hadas of Orlando FFL. Dive into a world where personal service meets firearm culture, offering a refreshing alternative to traditional gun stores. From custom work to NFA specialties, Dylan’s shop emphasizes excellence and education, ensuring every customer feels empowered and informed. Join him as he shares his journey from anti-gun sentiment to becoming a vital part of the firearms community.

Insights In This Episode

  • FFL Orlando aims to provide a more personalized experience compared to larger stores, prioritizing service and excellence.
  • They organize “guns, cars, and coffee” events, recognizing the overlap between car enthusiasts and gun enthusiasts.
  • They emphasize education and safety, offering classes focused on practical applications and legal knowledge.
  • Balancing professionalism with approachability is crucial to fostering a positive environment for customers.
  • Firearms ownership is portrayed as diverse, catering to various interests and needs, not just stereotypical gun enthusiasts.

About Tactical Business

Tactical Business is the weekly business show for the firearms industry. The podcast features in-depth interviews with the entrepreneurs, professionals and technologists who are enabling the next generation of firearms businesses to innovate and grow.

Episode Transcript

Wade: Welcome to the Tactical Business Show. I’m your host, Virginia Beach based firearms entrepreneur and copywriter Wade Skalsky. Each episode will be exploring what it takes to thrive as a business owner in the firearms industry. We’ll speak with successful firearms industry entrepreneurs about their experiences building their companies, leaders and legislators who are shaping the industry, and tech executives whose innovations will reshape the future of the firearms industry. Let’s get after it.

Wade: Hello and welcome to the Tactical Business Podcast. I am your host, Wade Skalsky, and today we are speaking with Dylan Hadas from Orlando, FFL. Dylan, how are you doing today, sir?

Dylan: Good. How’s it going, man?

Wade: It’s going good. I feel like I did like an 8.5 out of ten on your last name, so I split the baby on a little bit, but I got there mostly.

Dylan: Yeah. No worries. A lot better than most people. I give you a couple brownie points for that.

Wade: Well, you have like that Eastern European kind of last name like I do. So we gotta try to stick together. That’s it. All right. Well, I’m excited to talk to you today. Why don’t we just start with for people that don’t know your business, and obviously you’re where you’re located and how you got to be where you are today.

Dylan: Sure. We’re in Ocoee, Florida. We’re on the cusp between Winter garden, Orlando, Ocoee, just and that kind of greater area. We’re a small shop. We have a retail, small retail section. We do a lot with NFA stuff. Uh, a lot of custom work to cerakote, slide milling, laser engraving, that sort of thing. We got started probably about almost six years ago. At this point, as much as I hate to say it, we came out of the necessity to have a gun store that is probably a little bit more personable than maybe some of the other options out here. I can’t tell you the amount of times that I’ve walked into maybe another gun store and had a negative experience for this, that or another, but our whole goal is to try to be just a little bit different than another shop or another company. So the service is definitely something that we place a paramount on. We want to be better. We want to just have that spirit of excellence with us no matter what’s going on that day. It’s just it’s part of who we are as as a gun shop. And not only that, but a culture. I feel like it is a very important part of firearm ownership is the culture as well. And last thing we want to do is you have the first time gun buyer that walks in and they maybe have a negative experience. And I think that actually places a lot of maybe negative connotation on what the firearms industry is like. There are a lot of new gun owners out nowadays, probably more so than there has ever been in history. We just want to promote the culture and, you know, safety and everything like that the best we can.

Wade: That’s really smart because the firearms industry is a big tent and there’s a lot of varying degrees of knowledge. Right. So you may have your, your former military guys who are or former police or Swat or whatever who are extremely knowledgeable on everything firearm. But then you have your more people who are like brand new to it, never had a gun before. And from that perspective, they’re they’re very they’re not comfortable at all. And so if you can make them comfortable, I think you just are creating another advocate for firearms.

Dylan: Right? Yeah, 100%. And that’s what we set out to do. It doesn’t matter if you say shoot guns every single day or you’ve never shot a gun before in your life, we set out to create an environment that’s, you know, both positive and healthy for all walks of life. So that’s our biggest thing.

Wade: So what is your background? How did you get into firearms and what sort of made you take that step to go to a retail shop and what you’re doing now?

Dylan: It just fell into place naturally. I guess you could say when I was younger, I think from the age of nine, that’s when I first started to get involved with firearms. It’s the typical my dad took me shooting one time, and before that though, I was like completely anti-gun, probably just because I didn’t know. And it was more or less the fear of the unknown thing I didn’t understand anything about. I was probably a little too young at that time, but I’ve always liked different types of weapons. Like I really liked knives and swords when I was younger. But one day my dad just said, hey, I have a handgun and let’s just go to the range and see how you like it. So at first it was super intimidating. Obviously huge loud explosion. And you’re you have these things on your head and it’s like it’s very it’s a really unique experience. But once I did it, at first I shot my first gun, which was a, a Beretta Neos, which I don’t even know if they still make them. They may be, I don’t know, I couldn’t tell you, but after I actually got past that threshold of that maybe apprehensive type stage, I just was hooked on it.

Dylan: I spent the next decade or so just trying to figure out and learn everything I possibly could about guns. Even in school, I got in trouble for bringing, like, these, those gun catalogs. I don’t like the guns and ammo, and they have, like, the gun catalog, like one of these guys. It’s got the encyclopedia in the back with all the the values. And I had that at school and I got in trouble a number of different times from just looking at that. But other than that, I do come from a management background. That’s what I do. Here I am, I’m the general manager, but basically my whole adult life going forward, it basically started with managerial type jobs, and then I actually got acclimated with a shop back in I think 2018, I believe, through actually one of our guns. In coffee events. So I walked in and the atmosphere was not like any I’ve ever experienced at a gun shop. So from that point on, after that first event, I was hooked with the company, the brand as a whole, and it was just my my dream job to be able to run a gun shop.

Wade: Everyone comes to this to firearms differently, right? Like everyone always thinks that it has to be. Oh, you come from a hunting culture or oh, you came from the armed forces or. But that’s not your situation. So I love hearing sort of different paths to the same place where people come from. So are you from South Florida originally? Is that where you’re from?

Dylan: I’m from Central Florida. I’m born in Central Florida.

Wade: Okay, yeah. So Florida’s a pretty gun friendly state, obviously, compared to some of the other states, and I don’t I would think it’s more known for its fishing than for its hunting. But obviously there’s stuff you can hunt there. But yeah, you’re not ranching at all. I love hearing about it. Now, when you start to say, hey, I want to do like general manager and do it with a gun shop. How did that happen with the store that you’re at now? Talk a little bit about the the guns, cars and coffee because I think that’s an awesome promotion that you guys do, and I love that you make it part of your brand. Yeah.

Dylan: So with the guns, cars and coffee, it’s one of those things where we recognize that car guys and gun guys are more or less cut from the same cloth. The hobby in a lot of ways is pretty similar. I also I’m into cars to some degree, maybe not as much now than I was, but you know, it’s still something that’s on the radar. But I know just from experience, being around the car scene that a lot of people that are interested in cars, that are also interested in guns. So I figured it was and I wasn’t the one who initially created this. I can’t take credit entirely for it, but I just think it’s it’s a good mesh of of subcultures. I guess you could say we started doing them starting out. It was the first Saturday of every month, and ultimately, and unfortunately, it just became a little too much for us. So we’ve dialed it back down to once a quarter, which we feel is the sweet spot that gives us a lot of time to not only prepare and every single one we have, there’s always some like a standout activity that we do. So obviously it’s the raffles and the food trucks and the DJ like that’s present at all of them.

Dylan: But we also like to have some type of activity to do. For example, the last one we did, we had we had a classroom, actually, we have a we’re in a strip plaza. We own most of the units here. So we actually renovated our classroom where we do the CCW classes to be a like a little CQB tactical course. So we had these dividers all set up and you pay X amount, you get a ticket, bring the ticket over to whoever’s running it. They give you one of those cool fire trainers, which if you haven’t seen those, they’re super cool. It’s a barrel, replacement barrel and recoil assembly replacement for most modern semiautomatic. They’re gun specific, but the way it works is they’re CO2 powered. So it actually cycles the slide for you and resets the trigger. Not only that, they have a laser module that is integral to the design. So when you pull the trigger, not only does you feel simulated recoil and you have that the reciprocating mass of the slide coming back and forth, but you also are able to track hits via the laser. So we had multiple targets set up the fastest time, won a gift card or something like that.

Wade: So it’s like adult laser tag basically. Yeah.

Dylan: I guess you could look at it like that. That actually is a pretty good idea. We might implement that one of the next ones. So thank you for that idea.

Wade: Yeah you can take it. And that’s what I love about trying to how can we do things to bring more people into the fold. Right. Because if you don’t like cars or coffee or guns, then I don’t really have anything to talk to you about. Right. Except for maybe. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And I love talking to everyone’s different approaches to how they bring people into the fold and how they make people feel comfortable because someone may not want to come into your shop, might be intimidated by it or arranged, but they’ll come maybe to talk cars and then go from there.

Dylan: Yeah, exactly. And the other thing, too, I guess I could segue into is along those lines of it being a very intimidating type of environment initially for a lot of people. We do have a YouTube channel that we started pretty recently, which focuses a lot on kind of parodies of those things. So I think that the whole reason behind it is to help break down that the initial wall, and I feel like if you see someone being silly on the internet or personalities and that sort of thing are always seem to be a little bit more inviting than the classic trope of the gun shop, where there’s a guy with a big old mustache and he’s get out of our store. We try to just do things a little bit different and have fun while doing it, too.

Wade: I’m a big fan of that. I write for the firearms industry, and so I’m always in a battle with some of my clients that they want to take a more traditional approach, which I understand, but it’s hard to stand out in because it is a pretty big industry and there’s a lot of established players. And so if you can have a little bit of fun, you know, you can still treat the topic with the seriousness that it deserves when you start talking about it. But you can lead into. A lot of different fun, and sometimes humor is the best way to convey ideas. Yeah.

Dylan: No, absolutely. I agree 100%. It’s about walking that line of silliness versus professionalism. You have to be able to have people take you serious enough without it being too stagnant or too stifling of an environment, but at the same time, you don’t want to maybe get the the perception out that you’re unsafe or you are just an idiot or a bozo for lack of better words. That’s part of the challenge of it is establishing that middle ground. But absolutely, I see what you’re saying, that it is a very locked market. There are some really defined people out there in the industry that are are personalities, and it is harder and harder to stand out as a company. And or everyone is basically trying to occupy the same space.

Wade: One advantage, though, that you have of having a brick and mortar location versus maybe someone that’s just only on the internet, is that you have a huge advantage geographically, you can stand out geographically, because the only thing that you’re competing with is people that are within your space in Florida, whereas a lot of people, they’re like, no, I just want to do the internet and they maybe only are on the internet and they don’t have a brick and mortar, but then they’re competing against the whole world. I think it’s really smart for people to have a brick and mortar component like you guys do, because it is a hedge against just the internet stuff, at least in my opinion. Right.

Dylan: It’s a double edged sword of sorts. So meaning that the internet is one thing. If you do run an internet business and more power to you. But you know, a lot of times that those big internet juggernauts are taking all away from the brick and mortar stores like us. I don’t know if there’s any internet personalities, so to say that run an FFL or do anything like that. But if you have companies like Palmetto, for example, they’re obviously one of the largest manufacturers of various guns. Now at this point. And what’s great that they have a huge online presence. But, you know, I have a lot of customers that come in and they want me to price match a gun that maybe they have on sale. And unfortunately, I just can’t a lot of the time. And the reason for that being is with them being such a large manufacturer, and they cut out the middleman, they either make their own products or they have a deal with a manufacturer where they’re direct. For us to go direct with the manufacturer, usually they’re going to want a lump sum of money down just as a startup. And we’re we have to take X amount of product. So a small shop like us, it’s virtually impossible for us to have 250 units of any one product at one time. And obviously us being not corporate, it’s with the budget and all that. It’s quite challenging. So like I get it, there’s a necessary evil to it. But the brick and mortar versus the internet, it’s a two sides of the same sword I think.

Wade: Well it’s a big yeah, it’s a big tent though. And I think there’s a space for Palmetto. And then I think there’s also, like I said, but more importantly locally. Right. Because because that’s where you’re going to learn to shoot or you’re really going to learn about guns. Because if I come into your store and I get I bring one of my guns, I say, hey, I want you to do some mill work on this or whatever. You start to get a relationship with that person. And also two is a trust factor where you know, hey, you can work on my gun. And so I think there is a definite advantages to, to going to meet people in person and especially to for your education. So why should walk me through a little bit with you guys on your education component? Because that is something that online can’t do that you guys can do for like for Florida or for whatever.

Dylan: Yeah. So right now we and this is we are still a relatively new company in the grand scheme of things. But as time progresses on, we hope to further and expand a lot of the educational resources that we already do now, but to a greater extent, the one thing that we do offer right now is basically the CCW class. That’s what a lot of people call it, but it’s actually just a basic handgun class, a basic firearm course, or a basic handgun course. So with that, we do facilitate it a little bit differently than maybe X, Y or Z company. Ours is more focused on a lot of the practical applications of maybe firearms, a lot of general information, and then the laws too. So obviously we are in a very volatile political climate, so we try to do our due diligence to the best of our ability to stay on top of the laws as they change, and just be able to present that to people and to keep them in the loop. I know it’s it’s daunting a lot of times when it comes to maybe new rules or new laws passed regarding firearms, and there’s not really a very good resource for that other than maybe YouTube. And if you are brave enough, you could try to navigate like a government website to try to find those things. We try not to sell stuff either, really at our CCW classes. I know that is unfortunately what a lot of other companies do. It’s just basically get them in here so I can talk about guns at the shop all day, which I think that is disingenuous to the customer. And not only that, but disingenuous. Two gun culture as a whole. Like these people are coming to you to learn something, you better teach them. So that’s our whole outlook on it is just and I guess that goes back to the whole customer service thing. We try to be as genuine and as upfront with people and transparent as possible.

Wade: Yeah. Well, and I think keeping up with the laws is kin. I’m an attorney. Right. So I was practicing law, so I was practicing law for a long time. And even I get confused as to each state and what’s acceptable, what’s not acceptable. And it is a very fluid part of the law. Right. So I think that’s awesome that you guys try to keep on top of that. But and I also think it’s smart to is that the sales will come if you just provide people what they need. Right. And so if someone’s coming to you for a standard handgun class, it’s you need to meet that demand, fix that problem first and then the rest will follow.

Dylan: Yeah. No. Absolutely. And I tell people this all the time, I’m probably the worst salesman on the planet. I hate being that guy. I’ve never, ever wanted to be that guy. But my team is the same way. Like, we’ll we’re there to give you information. Guns. You don’t need to sell guns more or less sell themselves. Right. So we’re only there to provide information. We’re very anti sales tactics. That’s just not how we want to conduct business. We hate high pressure sales tactics. We hate just being a sleaze ball. We just want to be genuine with people. I find that is the easiest way to conduct business is if you constantly are lying to your customers and pulling shady stuff, it always comes back. But it’s never that you fool all the people all the time. Eventually it comes full circle and unfortunately, I’ve experienced a lot of that over the years with not only the firearms industry and other businesses, but just in just general terms. So I feel like just being genuine and up front creates a ultimately less work for you in the end.

Wade: Yeah. There’s a I always want to try to put things that are both the right thing to do. Usually the with enough perspectives, the right thing to do and what’s in your interests are the same thing. Right. And and I think you hit the nail on the head with regards to just provide the environment for people to buy because guns are like tattoos, right? Like once you have one, no one ever stops at one tattoo. You’re right. They always get more than one, right? Guns are like that too. It’s like once you buy a gun, you get into shooting. You’re like, it’s inevitable you’re going to buy it.

Dylan: Right? Yeah. No, that’s that’s a big thing. And we’re a gun shop, obviously. But behind the scenes we’re obviously a repeat customer business. We always like seeing the same people and we build those relationships with those customers. And it’s it creates a better environment because it’s you. Actually there’s a couple people, customers that I’ve formed here that are actually really close friends of mine now. It’s really nice to share that type of synergy with people and connect with them that way. But at the same time, it’s when it comes to guns. There’s you have to recognize that there’s not just one type of gun owner. Sure, there are a majority of them, like you’re saying, will buy one gun and then it never stops it. They’re it’s usually two, three, seven, 12, 100 guns. But at the same time, I do have people that come in and they’re like, I’m not really interested in firearms. I just need this to perform its duties as a tool for me, which I established that it’s I, it’s not my job to stand up here and tell you that you should like guns or not, for various reasons. My job is basically just to give you information, give you some insight. What, uh, maybe sift through some anecdotal information that you hear all the time and consolidate it that way. So it doesn’t matter what what walk of life you come from, what your interests are. It’s not my job to sort that. It’s just to provide you what you’re looking for.

Wade: Yeah, and meet people where they are. And I think that’s and I think that goes back to the customer experience is paramount. And so if you try to make someone be what they’re not, then they’re going to have a a bad taste in their mouth and they’re not going to want to come back. Or worse, they may not buy a gun or train with it, and then that’s doing them an even bigger disservice.

Dylan: Yeah, exactly. Think of a good analogy that I’m thinking of is you get those big old macho guys at the range and they, they have maybe like a Desert Eagle or a, an absurdly large caliber handgun, 500 Smith and Wesson or 454 Casull and they’re like, oh, wouldn’t it be funny if I handed this to my £90 wife and let her shoot it? She’s going to shoot it because you said, it’s okay. She’s obviously not going to have a good time if she’s an inexperienced shooter. And don’t get that wrong. Like there’s a lot of women that are that can handle those firearms just fine. That’s not what I’m saying, but it’s the inexperience of it. They you give it to someone who is maybe smaller in stature, that has not even shot a gun before. And from that point, after that negative experience, it like you were saying, it leaves a bad taste in your mouth. And from that point on, most of the time it’s the whole gun thing is now a taboo thing, and you don’t want to be a part of it. You don’t want anything to do with it. So I feel like you can use that as an analogy to describe the retail space of firearms. You go in there as a first time gun buyer. People treat you like a dollar sign instead of a person. And from that point on, they’re now your enemy. And I think in this type of environment, we don’t have room to create enemies, especially from the legal side of it. We need everyone on our side as possible.

Wade: I agree with that. And I think and the other part of it too, is that your gun ownership is not. It just starts with buying a firearm. It doesn’t it doesn’t end there. It’s like you need to train with your firearm to be safe. And like you said, if you if someone comes in and and they think, okay, well, I just want to get this firearm, I feel comfortable with that. And you try to upsell them to something that they’re not ready for and they don’t train with it. Yeah, yeah, they own a gun, but they’re not training with it. It’s just in a closet. And if they ever have to use it, they it’s going to be even more unsafe for them than if the bit almost better not to have one sometimes.

Dylan: Yeah. No. Absolutely. And that’s also a point to touch on that what firearms are to a lot of people is a false sense of security. They think that they have this item that can absolutely cause like a deadly wound to someone or however you want to word it. It’s that’s one thing, but you have to be able to use that tool to achieve what you’re looking at. So I think for a lot of reasons, a gun to maybe a newer shooter is somewhat of a safety blanket. They think that just because I have it, I’m safe regardless. And that’s, as you and I both know, is very far from the truth. If you don’t train with it, if you don’t follow basic firearm safety protocol, it’s going to end up being probably more of a detriment than it is an asset to you. That’s one thing we try to tell people and break down those walls of anecdotes versus facts and real world application.

Wade: This episode is brought to you by Every few years, it seems large banks and national credit card processors suddenly decide that they no longer want to process payments for firearms and firearms related businesses, and so they drop these businesses with almost no notice, freezing tens of thousands of dollars in payments for months on end. If you want to ensure your partner with a payments provider that is dedicated to supporting the firearms industry, or you just want to find out if you could be paying less for your ACH, debit and credit card processing, visit Again, that’s It’s complicated because if someone doesn’t understand, like, say, the laws of brandishing, for example, right? Like you, there are certain situations you cannot brandish a firearm. It’s illegal, you’ll get arrested for a felony. And you’re right. So that’s the legal sort of level of it. But then there’s the secondary level of it is like sometimes if you introduce a firearm, you brandish a firearm. It it’s not going to end well for you because you don’t know what you’re doing right. And you up the level of escalation. You make things more deadly. And you could actually end up injured because you’re flashing your gun all around when you should never, ever do that in certain situations. I think, like you said, is it really is important for people to understand that there’s many different levels to owning a firearm, and the only way to become competent at it is training and talk to people who know what they’re talking about.

Dylan: Yeah, yeah. No, absolutely. I see what you’re saying. We definitely in the classes we we talk about that justifiable use of force in Florida state statutes. So like you’re saying, brandishing a firearm. So the law states that using a firearm doesn’t necessarily or doesn’t only include shooting a gun, which obviously it does, but it also includes having it readily accessible for immediate discharge. So if you pull a gun out and it is assuming it is loaded and in your hand, that is using a firearm, which is automatic grounds for use of deadly force. Plus, if you have two parties, they could testify against you. And yeah, things can turn very not the way you want if you misuse firearms. But you know, unfortunately not a lot of people grasp that, at least initially, which I think is a problem. But, you know, we try to do our best to explain that and go through it and outline the do’s and don’ts of the the legal context anyway, of firearm owning ownership and carrying a gun on you.

Wade: Yeah. And you said it. That’s really important is we need to get as many people as we can on our side as advocates, because there’s a lot of disinformation out there about just guns in general. And so from the like, people like their movie. The movies are basically their their main source of information for firearms. And that is not how things work. Right. And and even like even the type of firearm. So I did a we did a podcast with a gentleman who they make AK 47 seconds. Like that’s their business, right. And he told me something. I really had been thinking about it since about how, like most people view an AK as a bad guy gun, right? They’re like, oh, an AK 47. If you own an AK 47, that’s a bad guy gun. It’s just a gun. And so there’s like, but there’s that preconception from the movies that we have to overcome to get people on our side to make guns less scary and more of a tool. And so that’s why, you know, I love your guys’s approach, that you have classes that are connected to your shop that you really do, like you said, is is try to treat the customer holistically instead of transactionally.

Dylan: Right? No, absolutely. It is a big part of our business. And it’s funny that you bring up the kind of the movies and the anecdotal information. What I find is not only is a lot of that very toxic and not genuine, but a lot of times the this misinformation is also spread from gun owners themselves. So they think that, oh, you need a customer to come in and they say, oh, I want a shotgun for home defense. I would say, why would you want a shotgun for home defense? Well, the guy at the other store said that you go and it scares them off. I’m like, uh, well, I don’t think that’s necessarily true. And they’re like, well, you just aim it down the hallway and squeeze the trigger. I’m like, how big is your house? I’m like, oh, I live in a townhome. Like it’s not spreading anywhere, I’m sorry to tell you that. But, you know, so, uh, I think that’s, uh, that’s important too, is not only when it comes to firearm ownership. Do you have a responsibility to obviously be safe and responsible. But I feel like being a gun owner, you have an obligation to be educated and not to spread misinformation, because it’s easy to not believe someone who is against you. But it’s harder to believe someone that is allegedly on your side and an advocate that you’re of the same thing that you are. So it’s I feel like that’s also a big issue that we see.

Wade: Yeah. Well home defense right. That’s a yeah. Okay. So someone you really have to think about. Well what kind of realms am I using. Because if you have an AR and there are certain types of rounds that you’re going to put out an AR, that they’re going to go through your house, through your neighbor’s house and to the neighbor’s house, you know what I mean? You know what I mean? Like if shot correctly. So like it is, you’re totally right on that. And that’s why I always try to come from a place of like, I, I know just enough to be dangerous, but I always want to confirm that everything I think is true, because otherwise I don’t want to be giving people bad information for sure.

Dylan: Yeah. No, absolutely. And it is even for us as as people who try to be on the factual side, it’s without looking at evidence or anything like that, like how would you know otherwise unless you sit there and you either tested specific ammunition and guns in that sort of thing, you don’t. Or if you have some type of resource that has shown you just strictly empirical data, it’s hard to sift. Through what’s factual and what is not. So it’s I think that is is a challenge as well. So that’s what we do. Like we, we try to educate ourselves to the best of our ability just so we can transfer that knowledge to the customer and hopefully keep them safer. That’s it sounds general, but I think that it’s we have a responsibility to to portray things in a correct, factual manner as well.

Wade: Well, you touched on it earlier about, yeah, you could try to go on YouTube and learn things and but if you don’t have that, if you don’t have that local component of someone that you can go to that’s skilled or a team of people, right? Because you’re not the only person that works at your shop. Right? Right. So like the however many guys or gals you got over there that you guys get to, if I come in there and I say, hey, what about this? You’re going to there’s going to be a wealth of knowledge there of people that I trust because I bought a firearm from you. I’ve taken the class there and like my local ranges like that where and my firearms instructor. Right. So like, he’s a master gunsmith and, and if I have a holster issue or something like that, I just I go to him and was like, what do I do? And, and I think having that local resource, we never want to lose that. And I think that’s why supporting brick and mortar stores, like what you guys are doing is so important.

Dylan: Yeah, I think to some degree, the I don’t think it’s possible to completely eliminate the brick and mortar store. We think about situations like that, like take Amazon for example. They’ve basically run off so many different small businesses just from their ability to go manufacture, direct a lot of the times or be an affiliate seller to keep prices down and ship right to the customer. But legally speaking, obviously we can’t do that with serialized components. So I think there is always going to be a need for a firearms, a brick and mortar shop like that. But as more and more online retailers begin to pop up, I think that it might affect us financially just going down the line. I know a lot of people are. You can get Magpul stuff accessories off of Amazon now. You can buy a lot of that. They offer free shipping, and they have these crazy deals with these manufacturers where they can sell and cut out the middleman. And so I still think that it is important to have a brick and mortar shop, but I don’t think that it is still the end all be all, which kind of comes full circle, right? How do you separate yourself from every other local shop when you provide a minimal at best service? Just for one.

Wade: But I think you guys are doing it with your your guns and cars and coffee stuff and your classes. And the other thing too though, is like, so I write for the holster company, right? So I do SEO for them, I write other content for them or whatever. And so they also they’re on Amazon. But then if you look on Amazon, Amazon is flooded with foreign companies, right. Or foreign sourced materials that aren’t as good. So you’ll be looking at one holster. You’re like, oh, this holster is like $60, right? So why is this holster $60. And this one’s 11. Right. And so being able to navigate that is one of those scenarios where like I said, it’s having a contact of a of a brand that you trust rather than just trying to go the lowest bidder I think is is like you said, is important for everyone to understand is that we that we do that?

Dylan: No, I get what you’re saying. And oftentimes with stuff like that, the there’s a two products that look the exact same one costs whatever, and then the other one costs substantially more. I think it’s our job to figure out if that, in fact, it is worth that money or if it’s not when it comes to holsters, it’s there’s unless you’re buying, I think something really, uh, purpose driven. So maybe like a safariland like a 63, whatever it is, that’s obviously something that has a lot more engineering to it. But what I’ve seen a lot of times is if you have a molding thing and access to just blank sheets of kydex, that you can actually make a pretty good product if you’re handy enough. The holster industry very wishy washy. Everyone has a holster and they all want $1 million for it. But like I said, unless it’s something super purpose driven and niche like that, it’s oftentimes you can get actually something pretty good off of Etsy, which is, um, pretty good in just a few bucks. Sometimes 15, 20 bucks.

Wade: Yeah, I guess it depends on what your philosophy is like. So for me, if I’m going to conceal carry something every single day, I want to go to somebody who’s made 20,000 of them, you know what I mean? Like for my right. Right. And so when you get some of the smaller, more boutique niche guys and I’m not saying anything bad about them, it’s just a different sort of set of problems. Right. Like it takes longer. They may not have the support, but like you said that you just trade off for price. So I guess it’s just what you think. What’s important for me? I don’t buy that many guns. I have a shotgun and ah, a pistol and then a long gun in terms of. So when I do parts, I just have to stay in those guns. Right. So I can, I can stay, I can go a little higher on my parts. I don’t have 25 holsters. I need to buy like some people.

Dylan: Yeah. Even then, like I don’t have as many guns as I used to. I’ve really consolidated what I do have and even then, like, I have maybe 1 or 2 carry guns that I rotate out and I have like a box of holsters for each of them. It’s just right. You think that this is going to be better than maybe this option, then you try them and you’re like, nah, maybe I like this one better. And it just is like ever turning circle of me buying holsters. Yeah, I don’t know. It’s one of those things. But you know, I have guys that come in here that have hundreds of guns, like quite literally like hundreds of guns. And, um, they’re always buying stuff for them. And I’m like, what are you like? Not that I it’s any of my business. I was like, like, why do you, like, own so many? And not that I’m like prying on them or anything. I’m like like, what’s the general like the genuine reason and like, yeah, it’s just cool. I was like, it’s it. You just walk into a room, you just have them all. And he’s like, of course.

Wade: It’s, well, it’s like collecting baseball cards or like you said, like cars, like some people collect cars or and actually there are good some of them are a good investment. We just did a show my co-host who sometimes co-host with me, John McCoy, and we did this, a show about some of these like antique ones to invest in and stuff like that. And they hold a guns hold their value. And, and so I think, like you said, it’s like there’s a lot of different people with a lot of different ideas on guns. I know the next gun I’m going to buy is I’m going to get a ten, ten, 22 Ruger for it, because that’s what I’m going to teach my son on. It’s like, all right, we’re gonna go start shooting the 22. But I still got a couple of years before I have to worry about getting him on a gun.

Dylan: He’s on as many guns as I’ve owned in the past. I’ve always said that if there was ever like a zombie apocalypse, it wouldn’t be a $3,000. Ah, it would be literally like a Ruger 1022 with, like, takedown, with a suppressor and like a surefire light strap to it. Like, I think that’s probably one of the most proven amazing guns of all time. Like, yeah, it doesn’t matter what your stance is on guns. Like if you have whatever preference of manufacturer, I think everyone should have like 2 or 3, 20 twos at least, like 1020 twos. They’re just such a nice little gun. They’re basically like a Lego set. There’s everyone and their mother makes parts for them and you can just build them from the ground up. I actually just did one some guy bought we get a lot of those brownells, uh, ten, 22 receivers. And I got guys with these big heavy bull profile barrels and they’re like sticking it in the freezer to try to get it into the receiver. Yeah, they always bring them to me and I assemble them for them. But yeah the investment thing I’m glad you brought that up. A lot of people they do try to buy guns for investment, and I feel like a lot of them buy the wrong things or overpay for them. I tell people all the time, if you’re looking for guns for investment, there’s nothing that you have more potential return on investment with than transferable machine guns. You can you can get into something right now for the cheapest, probably anywhere between like 9 to 15 for something on the the lower end of the spectrum, which it sounds like a lot, but think about the transferable market. Ten years ago, those guns that were $10,000 now were like $3,000. They think that, oh, why would you ever spend this much money on a gun? You know, why this and that. But the truth is, it’s you. Like, what asset could you liquidate that would give you more than a transferable machine gun? There’s not a lot maybe like real estate or we’re not.

Wade: A we’re not gonna do disclaimer. We’re not giving investment advice. We’re not an investment investing podcast. Well, but I think the thing about machine guns is that first of all, it scares normal people. They’re like a machine gun. What, like you can get a machine gun? Yes, you can buy a machine gun. I don’t own a machine gun, but there’s a finite number of them, right. Like it’s a very small. It’s very that category of firearms is not just going to explode one day for retail machine guns, right. It’s transferable machine guns or like and I agree with you is that don’t invest in guns as an investment for the future. If you don’t know what you’re doing like it is a very oh yeah, it’s a very niche thing to do. And you don’t want to go buy a Daniel Defense $6,000 gun and be like, this is my investment, right? Because it’s I think there’s a lot of downward like you talked about Palmetto Armory. Right. Like there’s a lot of downward pressure on. They just sold an AR that they put 6000 rounds through. And it did fine. Right. And then they’ll replace it. So it’s there’s downward depression I think on the market for like. Ah. And I think that’s why everyone’s starting to push like, like sniper type like setups for things. Right. Because everyone’s kind of aired out. But yeah, I definitely don’t invest in guns unless you talk to somebody who knows what they’re doing in a situation. No.

Dylan: Like people come in and usually around election season, they’re like, oh, I need an AR. I’ll buy just whatever the cheapest AR you have is, and it’s going to be worth $1 million one day, which is not true because, you know, the market is super saturated. There’s everyone has some type of AR platform and that’s why you can get are so cheap now is it’s not that you have Colt and Bushmaster. You have Delta DPMs, Palmetto, Great Lakes Firearms, Andro Corp. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. You have so many manufacturers.

Wade: You got tiny little guys in Texas that you know that they have these little boutique shops that make make firearms. I think the big thing is for demand is always going to be ammunition. Like that’s because it’s because it’s expendable, meaning that you can only use it once. Whereas obviously if you have a you have a gun that has like the AR platform, 22 nine millimeter, like these, like Glock, for example, you’re never going to not be able to find parts for those things. But you know what? You’re not going to be able to find ammunition maybe one day, you know what I mean? Because it’s like if there was ever something was to happen. But I’m not a black pill person where I think it’s going to be zombie apocalypse time. I’m more of along the lines of like general degradation, general degradation of society kind of thing, more than just like wrong, right? Yeah.

Dylan: And that’s the thing. And we’ve seen that. It’s not that a lot of people think that you buy bulk ammo because you think that it’s the society will just completely collapse one day overnight. But truthfully, it’s think about that big scam that happened to us a couple of years ago. People were trying to hoard ammunition and there was no ammunition available. And we see that. So anytime that there’s some type of maybe social or political disruption, it really does affect the supply line of ammunition. And obviously if you don’t have ammunition, then what good is a firearm at that point.

Wade: Well yeah. But and it also goes to training too, like I was there’s a guy that I was watching some of his content and he’s of the opinion that if you don’t aren’t proficient in like let’s say like a pistol, for example, for like a nine millimeter or whatever, that ammunition is simply too expensive for you to be able to do enough rounds now to get proficient without dry firing or some of the other options. Right? Because if you look at like nine millimeter ammo, what it was ten, 15 years ago compared to what it is now, right? It is a different it’s a different environment. So do we think that ammunition is going to get more expensive or less expensive in the future?

Dylan: Yeah, I think it’s definitely going to as inflation takes hold, ammunition is always going to become more and more expensive is if there’s I can’t tell you if there’s going to be a plateau for that, if it’s ever going to stop, but most likely not. But yeah, I guess I have a slightly unpopular opinion. So we talk about training a lot, right? I think that depending on your skill level with a firearm, I think it is potentially harder to use a firearm more efficiently than you can any type of long bladed weapon. So you give an idiot some idiot, whatever, just a big old sword sharp object and say, swing this like a baseball bat. That’s deadly 360 degrees right? Now think about this. You have a gun which fires a relatively small little projectile. You have to now put that tiny little thing in a narrow spot. I think that takes a lot more skill to do efficiently than just have like a bladed weapon. But, you know, the media and everything will probably tell you otherwise that guns are dangerous, which, sure, I they absolutely are. But you know. Are they the most dangerous thing out there that someone can possess? No. Absolutely not. Even if it’s not even, uh, a weapon. There’s a lot of other instruments that a person could use to be efficient in doing. Not good things.

Wade: Well, but that’s why training is so important, right? So, like, I think one of the FBI statistics that most gun fights happen at seven yards, like you’re like seven, if you go to the range and you put the target out there seven yards, you’re like, this is really close. Yeah, it’s really close. But when the adrenaline is pumping and the degrees that you move your gun this way or that way for a handgun means a complete miss, right? And everyone’s moving around, it’s easy to see how you have these videos of people just like mag dumping and not hitting anything. It’s crazy. It’s. And that’s why training is so important and.

Dylan: Right, right. And a lot of people don’t understand that. You going to an indoor gun range or are you going to any type of flat range. It doesn’t really give you the real world training that you need to be as efficient as possible. Anyone can sit there and put a paper target out at whatever distance, and sit there and shoot one round a second, which is usually mandated for a lot of indoor ranges. And they think that it’s amazing that they put the same hole on top of itself, that whatever it is, it’s like anyone can do that. The issue is shooting under stress, cover concealment, firearm manipulation, strong hand, weak hand, presenting a firearm, different ways of doing that. It’s a lot more than what a lot of people think it is, which is just going to the range and shooting statically in one position and as much time as physically possible to put every round exactly where you want it to go.

Wade: And. Yeah, same for drawing from concealment. Right. Like it’s so okay. Yeah. Great. You’re going to do appendix carry. Awesome. Well how fast can you draw safely. Can you how fast can you do it right. Is it more comfortable for you and all those things. And that’s what I love about firearms. And I think you when we started the conversation, you made a you talked about cars and that’s how they’re similar is that they’re so deep like there’s so much depth to firearms. Right. So you can all the things you just discussed. Plus okay now let’s talk about movement. Plus let’s talk about tactics. All right. What about medical. Like are you in shape. Can you run like if you need to run do can you run like you’re if you get shot like, do you know how to do a tourniquet. Do you know how to stop the bleed. Do you know how to do what to do with a sucking chest wound? Like it’s very deep. And that’s why I, me, as a person who is curious and loves to learn, is I can talk about it all day is because you never run out of things to talk about. People who don’t know things about guns think it’s just, oh, it’s just goes boom. Like it’s the most child like view of guns humanly possible.

Dylan: Yeah. No, 100%. Like you’d be surprised if you know any one of my class, say, if there’s 30 people in the class. I said, who here knows? Basic first aid? I guarantee you maybe 2 or 3 people will raise their hands. So I’m like, what? What purpose do you have owning a gun if you also cannot have a discipline in other regards to help keep you safe? So they think that the gun is the end all, be all, but like you you said it’s clear as day. It’s more to it than that. It’s first basic first aid. How to apply a tourniquet. How to apply a tourniquet correctly. I’ve seen people do some really stupid things. There was this picture actually on the internet that I thought was like, I don’t think I’ve laughed this hard at something on the internet before, but it was. I don’t even know where it was, and I’m not sure it’s entirely important, but it was some type of conflict overseas which whatever is going on, and a guy had a cat combat application tourniquet. Everyone has them instead of applying it as you obviously know you how you should. The whole tourniquet was actually stuffed into the wound like a wound packing or I don’t it was, I don’t know, maybe I have a sick sense of humor, but I just saw that and I laughed for probably about ten minutes. It was just so outlandish that obviously we know what a tourniquet does and how it works, but that was just completely thrown out the window and the whole thing was just stuffed.

Wade: Well, yeah, that’s. Yeah. And that’s but that’s what’s so important is because when it, when something if something God forbid, if something ever happens, you’re not going to remember the YouTube video and that you saw on CPR. You’re not going to you have to practice these things and you have to practice them. Repetition like over time to be at all even. It’s just like martial arts, right? Like I did martial arts for a long time. For a long time, many years. But the only thing I really remember was like the first year of stuff or two years of stuff, because that’s the stuff that I did the most over and over and over and over and over and over again. And it’s muscle memory now. I can’t forget it. All the stuff, after a certain point, easily forgettable if I don’t keep doing it because I just don’t have the reps. And that’s for firearms and for medical. And I think what’s really important is, and maybe this is a good kind of a runway, I want to be respectful of your time. To start to bring it up is how do we get people to be responsible gun owners, competent and responsible, and good advocates for firearms? Right. And what’s the best way to do that? I think what you guys are doing on all the different levels is one of the best ways to do that.

Dylan: Sure, absolutely. And. That is a loaded question, right? It’s like, how do you get as many people on board on the right path as possible? And I think that it like it again comes full circle. It’s just about being in a retail space for me anyway. Obviously, if for a careers in the firearm industry will treat this differently, but at least in the space that I occupy, just being genuine and being as factual with customers as possible, explaining those things to them, maybe they didn’t even know that. They think that they have these preconceived notions about this, that or another. But I think it’s our job as advocates for the Second Amendment and self preservation is is to also educate others if they want to be educated.

Wade: Yeah, well, I couldn’t agree more. And, uh, I’m just. So I’m fired up about. I wish I could come to this next guns, cars and coffee on May 4th. So May the 4th be with you. But, uh, because I was looking at those cars, too. Some of those are looking pretty sweet, but. Well, listen, um, Dylan, what is the best way for people to find you? Um, what is your website? Are you guys on social? Kind of give everybody the detail. And if they wanted to contact you, how would they do that?

Dylan: Yeah, best thing to do. Just go on our website. You can reach us via email there. We also have social media, you name it. We’re very active on Instagram, so we do a lot of our gun raffles on Instagram as well. So that’s just @OrlandoFFL Instagram handle. So either one drop us an email or shoot us a message on Instagram. Usually it’s myself or one of the other guys that responds to them, but we’re pretty quick at it.

Wade: Awesome. Well, listen man, thank you so much for coming on the show today and can’t wait to see what you guys got cooking up next.

Dylan: Absolutely. Thanks so much for having me.

Wade: You’ve been listening to the Tactical Business Show by Join us again next episode as we explore what it takes to be a business success in the firearms industry.