Hawaii Historic Arms Association Show

By Dan Shea

Hawaii has a lot of firearms enthusiasts. Those of us from the Free Zones tend to think of the Controlled Zones as places where no interest in firearms is evident- but nothing could be further from the truth. SAR has a huge following in places like California, New York, and yes, Hawaii. Personally, I love going to the islands, so it didn’t take a lot of convincing to get me to pack up and go set up SAR at the Labor Day Weekend Gun Show at the Blaisdell Center in Honolulu. I had other business on Oahu anyway, so a small gun show might be fun- that was what I was thinking....

The Hawaii Historic Arms Association puts on this show twice a year, on Labor Day Weekend, and in early March. The show is a 250 table show, and it goes for two days. I expected to shake hands with a few subscribers, sell a few back issues, and generally enjoy some camaraderie with a few like minded individuals. Silly me. At the end of the weekend, SAR was sold out completely, and we had two new dealers on the islands.

From the moment the doors opened, the SAR tables were busy. Mark Genovese from Maui had arranged for a nice display of semi auto beltfeds, and these were set up with SAR. The interest there was amazing. From grizzled old vets to Gen-x comp shooters, there was a constant flow of people there with either interesting stories about firearms use, or interest in obtaining their own semi autos. These belt fed semis are legal in the islands, after following the local ordinances.

It is important to note that high capacity magazines (Over ten rounds) that are for a handgun are illegal. If you are going to a show, be very careful of what you get involved in. Rifle caliber mags are alright. Someone offered me a Luger snail drum for $275, under their table in a box. Scary incident... until we looked closer, and it turned out to be one of the European copies that only fit 9 rounds, with the snail on it just for appearances. Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean there isn’t someone out to get you.

My scavenging turned up some really interesting parts- optics for an M9A1 Bazooka, scope mount for my 57mm recoilless, various small parts for WWII guns, etc. Although it was only a 250 table show, it was a great scrounging show for me. There were also a lot of connections to be made with people who had stores of military collectibles. On the table across from SAR was a rather interesting sword. It was a presentation model, with the inscription “To L.M. Judd from members of the Machine Gun Company, 1st Infantry, NGH”. Unfortunately for me, the owner was a collector himself, writing about the subject, and no amount of browbeating or whining would get him to name a price.

If you are planning a trip to the Islands, I would highly recommend this show as a place to visit. The people that run it are enthusiasts, and it shows in the way that the gun show operates. It is geared toward the collectors and the shooters.

The next show is March 3-4 2000. As I understand it, some tables might still be available. Aloha, and I will see you there!

Hawaii Historic Arms Association
PO Box 1733
Honolulu, HI 96806

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V3N5 (February 2000)
and was posted online on August 28, 2015


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