During my visit yesterday, I counted six people working the counters at Keith's. The parking lot was full, and every one of the people was working with a customer.
I knew exactly what I wanted, and when one of them was able to help me she was polite, prompt, and knowledgeable about their inventory. She had to run across the street to an inventory location for the gun I wanted, but she did so immediately and within a couple of minutes a young man brought the gun into the store.
I checked the gun in the box (just a serial number match), agreed to buy, and she immediately gave me the background check form and turned me over to the young man who was getting state background checks done on the phone. He had been waiting for the State to answer for a few minutes, but once he got them on the line I believe I heard him complete six or seven applications in a row. I filled out my paperwork, gave it to him, and while he was working with the state I paid for the gun.
The whole process from beginning to end, walking into the store and walking out with the gun, took about 20 minutes. These people work efficiently and fast, and they know what they're doing.
Folks, this is a business, and a high-volume business at that. I think that Keith's is set apart by the size of their inventory and the number of guns they sell. They have very competitive prices and massive selection, so if you can do your research on the Internet and walk in knowing what you want, there's an excellent chance that you'll walk out with that gun, and you'll do it pretty quickly considering the number of customers in the store.
If you go into Keith's expecting the ""social club"" atmosphere of many of Portland's gun shops, if you need instruction or education, you're probably going to be disappointed. Keith's does seem to expect you to know what you want.
I've been there when there were not many customers in the store, and I saw customers getting plenty of time from the sales people, because they didn't have a line waiting. If the place is crowded, and if you have customers waiting and you're faced with somebody who's undecided, aren't you going to try to move them along?
If you walk in knowing what you want, you should expect to walk out a happy customer. If there's a crowd in the store, the way I see it is that those customers who just want to chat with the sales people and handle a bunch of weapons, and are really undecided, are being inconsiderate of the rest of the customers in the store, and unrealistic. If you're one of those ""shoppers"", you'll be happiest at a gun show, or one of the unsuccessful gun shops in Portland that have no customers in the store and not a whole lot of inventory, either.
Keith's is a business, a high volume, competitive price business with an excellent selection. The behave like good business people should.
If you need a lot of social interaction, go join a club.