Ever buy a gun to shoot then...


February 13, 2005, 10:23 PM
Find out what you have, and then have a hard time decideing if you should shoot it, like you bought it for, or keep it stashed away, in the condition you got it in?

I just bought a M1 Carbine, from a private collection at a gunshow. It was a winchester, and numbered about mid production. Looked kinda worn on the metal. But not bad. And it didn appear to be totally shot out. Unlike the one carbine another table had for 800, that the dip for the bolt hold open was double the size it should have been. Anyway, i buy it to shoot, and too add to my growing WW2 collection (Garand, 1911 (although not an original 1911))

So i noticed that it was a winchester reciever, and a Winchester barrel. So thats another reason i bought it. Got it home, tore it down, and posted the markings to a website. They identified it, and to my surprise its one part short of being a COMPLETE WINCHESTER CARBINE!!! :what: It has a Inland hammer. Other than that its all winny, and most likely original. I also ran a borescope through it, and it has an incrediable bore, my gunsmith thought it had been rebarreled, until he saw the markings.

I did take it to the range. Shot it a bit, and took it home, all along wondering if i should really be shooting this lovely peice of history. I cleaned it up really good, and now im wondering if i should shoot it as much as i had planned on.

Anyone else ever had this problem?

If you enjoyed reading about "Ever buy a gun to shoot then..." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
February 13, 2005, 10:31 PM
WOW...That's a good story! I have more than a few "safe queens" where after I purchased them, took em home and after some research found out how limited the production run was or the rarity of them, that I'll probably never shoot them again. Isn't it a shame? :rolleyes:

February 14, 2005, 12:05 AM
Its a combat rifle shoot it and enjoy they were never ment to set in safes. I have a 1941USGI Colt and a WW2 carbine and I shoot both and if I had a 427AC Cobra it would be on the street or track Shelby said he made them to be driven not collected.And that rifle was made to shoot not look at.

Guy B. Meredith
February 14, 2005, 02:16 AM
My PC 627 V-comp is a special serial number series dedicated to the International Revolver Championship presentations (naw, I got mine in a sweepstakes at the match). With the special serial number (even more "special" number) I dithered, but decided that I keep only working guns.

On somethng like an M1 I might have to think it over some more. Not a collector, though, so I am not equipped to store show pieces.

February 14, 2005, 06:09 AM
1954 Colt Match Target barely fired. I shot it a few times when I first got it but haven't since.

February 14, 2005, 08:21 AM
Anything that I have that I feel will become a safe queen gets sold off. If I cannot justify shooting it, I do not own it.

Mr. Mysterious
February 14, 2005, 08:30 AM
I have a hard time thinking of guns as investments, I buy them to shoot and will shoot every one that I buy. Now, if I do see a good deal on something that I don't want, but I know I can make significantly more selling, then that is a different story.

Most firearms are going to be fine for thousands and thousands of rounds, if you want to protect the value of a firearm just be extra careful when taking it to the range or when you store it.

February 14, 2005, 08:41 AM
Safe Queens and Trailer Queens get molested by me,
John Wayne comem.lever action like new never shot, Killed a 6 point with the 8th round down the barrel.
Cherry H-D 45 servi-car got packed with camping gear and ridden to the U.P.
the day after I got it..Should have seen the looks on the faces of the dirtbikers when they say me comming down the trails with it... :what:
65 Pontiac GTO convertable W/23,xxx org. miles went drag racing and got used as a daily driver for over 2 years while I was in service in Ft.Ord..
If I can't use it I won't buy it.

February 14, 2005, 09:25 AM
As far as I'm concerned, sticking a gun like that in the safe and just keeping it there is kind of like sticking a still-spry WW2 vet in a nursing home and just leaving him there. Sad, really.

February 14, 2005, 10:53 AM
I am starting to collect early production 10/22s. These guns will most likely never be shot. Especially if I can find one NIB. Everyone collects something that they leave in the box or never use. My thing it going to be old .22 rifles.

February 14, 2005, 11:45 AM
You paid for it so do as you please. All those who tell you to shoot it won't be around to help make up the difference in price if you decide to sell it in the future.

February 14, 2005, 11:48 AM
Safe queens aren't welcome in this house. :neener:

Every firearm that I own or will own will be a working firearm. I just won't be buying a $250k H&H double! :D

HI express
February 14, 2005, 11:53 AM
Sorry Slim,
I buy my guns to shoot not for collection.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it. (at least with my wife) :neener:

February 14, 2005, 11:53 AM
I have always bought guns to shoot. That's just me, I'm more of a shooter than a collector. That said.....I recently bought my second Yugo SKS, one in "unissued" condition, to go with my first Yugo SKS shooter grade that I shoot all the time. I bought it with the intention of shooting it big time, and basically just having a little nicer rifle. Well.....after I cleaned it up and took a look at it, I didn't have the heart to put one down the barrel. It doesn't even look like the bolt has been pulled back but a few times, if that, and it is in pristine condition. Must've been refurbished completely, stored, and never shot or issued. Matching numbers, blond wood...for an SKS, it is nice.

It's not a collector's piece, it was cheap, and there's really no reason not to shoot it. But since I have that shooter grade SKS, I think I'm going to keep this one as a safe queen for the time being. When my 2yr old son gets old enough to shoot, I'm thinking of giving it to him and let him be the first one to put a round through it. In the meantime, I'll shoot the heck out of my other SKS, the WASR, and my deer rifles. I think I need to stick to beaters, so I don't get the "safe queen" disease, I learned my lesson. :rolleyes:

February 14, 2005, 12:03 PM
Never thought I would but it happened. I bought one of the Ruger Acusport Bisleys in 45lc. It just felt about as perfect as a single action could. Didn't really want to shoot it then. Decided to just buy another to put away (and another in .44 as well) I'll simply keep them as safe queens until my son is old enuff. He can he shoot 'em if he chooses.

February 14, 2005, 12:05 PM
Yea, im still gonna shoot it. I still have 400 rounds of ammo left for it :)

February 14, 2005, 12:11 PM
Continued shooting along with care and the rifle you have isn't going to devalue.
I have seen several firearms ruined from neglect, they would have been in far better shape if the owners had shot and cleaned them once in a while.

February 14, 2005, 12:14 PM
I fall into the "I buy it to shoot it" group. I don't have safe queens, only range queens.

But in the end, it will have to be your decision. You bought it with the intent to use it as a shooter but found out it was something other than you anticipated.

Maybe split the difference? If the bore is that good maybe do some casual shooting. It takes a lot of rounds to wear out a firearm.

For me, the experience of shooting the rifle is more valuable than having it sit in a safe. But that is just me.

Regardless, congrats on your purchase.

February 14, 2005, 01:12 PM
I would shoot it. If a part breaks you can find replacements and as said earlier it is a military arm and probally outlast both of us. But it is yours to do with what you see fit.

February 14, 2005, 01:18 PM
I'd sell it to a collector and buy a shooter and some ammo.... :)

February 14, 2005, 06:34 PM
I recently purchased a Colt SP1 knowing it had some very early features. I did not realize until reading in the book "Black Rifle II" that I had just purchased an Original First Issue rifle. Now I won't be shooting this one at all.

On a similar note a friend was showing me his Garand as we were looking at mine, and my jaw dropped when I noticed the serial number 404! Worst part is someone GAVE him the rifle. Some guys have all the luck.

February 14, 2005, 07:29 PM
It's all been said on the thread.

But if I came across one I bought that proved "too nice" or "too rare" to shoot, I'd sell it to some collector willing to pay the collector price, and buy several other guns that I would shoot.....along with a ton of ammo and reloading supplies.

I think all guns should be worn out from frequent use.


M2 Carbine
February 14, 2005, 08:03 PM
About the only quality guns I've shot to destruction have been M2 Carbines.

Mostly you don't own guns, you are just keeping them a while until you die and then someone else gets to keep them a while.

So unless you want to pass down some almost unfired guns to some relatives, shoot your guns and enjoy them.
Most of them will still be here and shooting long after you are gone. ;)

February 14, 2005, 08:10 PM
I've done it the other way around. Bought a gun as a collectible, found out it was just another shooter. Bought a K98 as a collectors item. Got it home, found that the barrle had been cut back just a tid bit. Went to shoot, and the trigger is smooth as silk. Somebody turned it into an awesome shooter.

And for the purchase price of $150, I ain't complaining :D

If you enjoyed reading about "Ever buy a gun to shoot then..." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!