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First handgun I ever purchased was from them a few weeks back. My purchase started about a year ago when I was starting to look into different handguns, being prior military I had only really had the opportunity to shoot Berettas. I was wanting to know what the different features and reliability records of different models were. Mazama's was the first place I thought of, having grown up here and seeing it at the mall. I went in the store with a primary goal of expanding my knowledge of what the different models had to offer, how they felt and if I found something I liked make a purchase. After 10 minutes of looking over their selection, which given the size of the store was pretty good, I left without so much as a hello or can we show you something. Fast forward a year later and I have finally figured out what I wanted and it is now simply a matter of price. I had almost purchased my gun from another store the day before, but had to wait for my paycheck. I was actually on my way to the other store with the family when they decided they wanted to go shopping at VRC. Not really wanting to be dress shopping with the wife and girls I figure I'd kill some time at Mazama's. This experience was completely different then my first encounter. Almost immediately I was acknowledged and asked if I was looking for something, I told them what I was looking for and they pulled it from the case for me to look at. That's when I noticed the price was $50 less then the big box store I was headed to. Thirty minutes later I was walking out with my first gun. I returned a few weeks later, after obtaining my CFL, to purchase a CC holster. They were really busy, but was still acknowledged quickly once one of them had finished with his sale. He took time to pull my model of gun from the display case and start figuring out what it would fit in and if I would be able to CC with it there. Overall I took up a good 10 minutes of his time for an $11 holster. Then when I went to pay for it I found out I had a $10 credit for buying my gun from them, so I only paid $1. I know stores and employees have their off-days and that's what I will chalk up my first experience, the year prior, too. Definitely going to be one of the 1st places I look when I'm ready to buy my next firearm.
I would say fair overall. The first time I went there I was impressed because it had a good friendly atmosphere and a complete contrast to S&M. However, the more I go there, the more I see it is just an upscale version of S&M. Lot's of attitude. I bought a new gun there and everything was great until there was a problem with it. Cabela's is opening next month. Their prices will be high but they do know something about service.
These guys are friendly & fantastic. No attitudes or mall ninjas. Every time I've been in, there's been a woman in the store and they seem to get treated with respect, like the men (no ".45s are too scary" stuff). Great prices & decent stock. This is how a gun business should be run.
John is a good guy (all personal stuff aside LOL), the older guys don't seem to like us young chaps to much. Ok inventory, overpriced but a nice lil shop and once they see you a few times usually get used to ya!
We stumbled onto this store by accident a couple of days ago on a trip to Eugene to look for jackets. Other than one guy who seemed shocked that we wanted to look at this or that, kind of a What do you want to look at that for kind of look, but he was helpful. Rest of the staff seemed great. We were treated well. I went back the next day, and bought a holster. Nice little store. I'm thinking any store can have at least one person behind the counter that isn't well received, but I try not to let that affect my opinion if it's just one guy. I'll go back if we ever get back out to Valley River Center again.
I stopped by the other day, on a lunch break. I'm not sure if my mistake was that I was wearing a nice suit (since I'm in sales myself, and taking time on my break to visit the store) or that I am only 30, but the greeting by the staff was as cold as stone. I tried to chat the guy behind the counter up, asking a few questions about the particular pistol I was looking for; he seemed like this interaction had basically ruined his day. Worse yet, soon as he found out I had moved here from California a few years back, he got nearly stand-offish. At that point he seemed more interested in whether or not my credentials would be in order to purchase a firearm than offering any level of customer service.
I think I'll see what the other stores in town have to offer before even considering walking back in to Mazama's again. As a high-end retailer myself, I resent the fact that any store can keep it's doors open in this recession without offering the best customer service possible.
p.s. The staff on the fishing side of the store were very friendly and helpful, they actually seemed to know more about firearms than the grumpy old-timer I had to deal with on the firearms side.
Have purchased a majority of my firearms at mazama - all of them which have not been private sales exempting a pawn shop 10/22, and likely will continue to do so.
Prices are, as stated above, decent to slightly higher than average, and your milage can WIDELY vary. Generally, the guns seem to be at the going rate with an understandable slight store markup, but there have on occasion been some insane markdowns on certain firearms for no readily apparent reason other than perhaps proof of divine providence, or clerk's ignorance of retail value and sales tactics. Har har. Great selection of rifles, steady collection of new and used handguns.
Only prices that seem truly over the board are their black rifles, which seem to invariably be in the 12 hundred range, no matter the make, but I haven't examined their entire inventory of such so again, YMMV. They are very service member friendly, and for any devil dogs in Eugene, particularly from the WW2 generation, there is an amazing Camp Perry matched set by Springfield of engraved rifle and 1911, that is running for 3k. Seems a really good deal, all things considered - but I'm no astute collector. There is a very impressive collection of rifles on the wall that I am given to understand are the collection of the owner, who I have not -knowingly- met, that are either for display or sale. Included is a gorgeous Presidential Oregon shotgun, made for my President of choice, Nixon. I've asked - not for sale.
Staff are generally great, if not exceptionally knowledgeable about niched specificities. Despite having heard rumors to the contrary before first entering, I haven't encountered any gun ninja tendencies. There is, among some of the apparent store regulars, and one or two of the staff, a gruff tendency towards us younger shooters, but I've always considered that a right earned with age.
As mentioned, firearm selection is typically very good - more importantly, diverse. Ammo is likewise - a good amount of ball and self defense brands in stock, even for more obscure calibers. Unfortunately, the stock of accessories is not as diverse, though what is carried is quality, and will serve most needs. Holsters stand out as a gap area, as the only broad selections they carry are in the Galco vein, as well as some generic kydex and Uncle Mikes stuff - but they are always willing to order stuff in.
I will likely remain a loyal Mazama customer, not because they are especially outstanding any one regard, but because of the way they remain loyal to their customer base in general. They truly have the outdoors in mind at the store, whether you are a flyfisher, a hunter, or a collector; the amount of classes and seminars they seem to put together on various outdoors subjects on a monthly basis has impressed me in the very short amount of time I've lived in Eugene, comparatively. They do a yeoman's job in representing us, as shooters and outdoors-men, to what is in many ways a hostile community in regards to firearms, and I'll take that over a slightly cheaper rifle or a more flexible salesperson any day.