How subjective is the NRA rating system?


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rock jock
January 22, 2003, 03:26 PM
I have seen the NRA rating system, but there seems to be a lot of subjectivity built into it. As an example, I recently sold a Colt Buntline .22. Before I sold it, I had a gunsmith with about 20 years in the business fix a front sight that was a little canted and he told me that the gun was a beautiful specimen that probably rated 90-95%. Later, I brought it to another experienced gunsmith and he rated it 75-80%. Now, neither smith had any vested interest in the rating they provided, so how could they give two widely different opinions. How does one learn the rating system? Do you look at other guns that prograssively go from 50% to 100%? If so, how do you know that the examples from which you were taught were not rated incorrectly in the first place?

BTW, the 2nd smith also told me that he rarely sees a NIB gun that he would give a rating above 95%.

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JohnBT
January 22, 2003, 04:04 PM
Check out Fjestad's Blue Book of Gun Values Photo Grading System. It is in the front of the Blue Book or can be seen at:

www.bluebookinc.com/bluebookinc/myarticles.asp?P=6309&S=7284&PubID=4315&UT=admin&UID=368

You'll never get two people to agree anyway, but every little bit helps when you're trying to talk a price down (or up if you're selling.)

John

VictorLouis
January 22, 2003, 05:36 PM
Percentages should probably best be left in describing the finish, alone. Usually, we're referring to blueing and how much remains, but the same is applicable to nickle. I think the NRA system is pretty good, and just about universally acknowledged. However, you must be aware there are two NRA systems. One is for Antique arms, and the other for Modern guns. My buddy got burned in buying a 1911(or modern manufacture) which was rated 'NRA-Excellent', but NOT with the 'Modern' criteria!:rolleyes:

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