Collectible Modern Handguns.


June 9, 2007, 03:07 PM
I have returned to shooting after being away for many years. Lots of new manufacturers, lots of old manufacturers in trouble, unlimited sources on information and equipment, all of which has made my return very enjoyable.

But guns that I used as everday handguns now seem to have become collector weapons. For example, a Colt Python was a great revolver in the 60s and 70s so I decided to reacquire one only to find the prices are "challenging" and many buyers acquire to put in the safe. I also found this to be the case for certain Berettas, e.g. the Billennium and Italian made Inox 92fs.

Other than limited production, which certainly was not the case with the Python, what makes certain handguns produced in the last 50 years collectible and what would be the top ten on such a list today? Thanks for your thoughts.

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June 9, 2007, 03:26 PM
Smith & Wesson often does limited runs of revolvers that, while not bringing in high prices right away, can be in demand by collectors later.

Colts tend to hold their value very well, even recent production ones like my New Rollstamp Series 80.

Beretta 92s marked "M9" might have collector value someday.

It's hard to imagine the modern mass-produced polymer handguns becoming prized collector's items, but who knows?

June 9, 2007, 03:30 PM
I think the polymer phase is driving the collecting of all metal guns. Try to find a polished blued finish on todays production guns....few and far between. Possible collector guns being made today will probably be anything that's high quality, low production numbers, and has a classic design.

June 9, 2007, 03:45 PM
Glock 7, Special Weapons products.

June 9, 2007, 04:46 PM
Depends, polymer could be collectable if it has some different marking on it, like Mk.23. Or for example, our army USPs have EE Mil before the serial, if some civilian would own something like that it would be a tad different from usual USP.

June 9, 2007, 05:05 PM
Even the military surplus firearms are becoming quite collectable. I started collecting Makarov pistols a few years ago and they are much higher priced than they were and are no longer imported.
I think you are right about polished blue guns...........there's just hardly none being made any longer and I feel will surely be collectable if the mass keep buying polymer which don't do anything for me personally.

My favorite thing to collect is High Standard .22's. I can't see this kind of mass produced craftmanship ever being manufactured again.

June 9, 2007, 05:12 PM
I just discovered S&W 2nd and 3rd gen pistols , soI've been picking up 1 or 2 a month now . Theres nothing wrong with polymer pistols ,its just that they lack the since of 'solid' workmanship you can feel in the metal framed ones . None of the ones I have are particularly valuable (well maybe the 10MM ones) its just a personal preference .

June 9, 2007, 06:24 PM
What drives long term collectability tends to be high quality. Even in it's day the Python was an expensive revolver and not available to everyone. Most modern collectibles seem to stick with this view. So pistols like HK P7's, Sig P210's hold their value very well. They are not mass produced and are generally of the highest quality in manufacturing.

Short term collecting is often driven by percieved short supply, hence you have a lot of mass produced guns with some minimal change to try to make them scarce. Examples are numerous, the Berettas previously mentioned (M9/Desert Storm/Etc) or a model with a specifc combination of features produced as a limited edition. In general these don't hold up long term, but short term do ok.

Look at antiques, fashion comes and goes, so sometimes a particular piece of average quality furniture can be profitable to buy and sell in a short term. But the items that consistantly hold their value are things that were expensive in their day. They were things everyone couldn't have quality wise.

June 9, 2007, 07:24 PM
How about an old 686 S&W - it is the classic service revolver -

June 9, 2007, 09:51 PM
Smith and Wesson pinned and recessed revolvers are finding favor with collectors.
Military type pistols of all sorts still have a big following.

I also agree M9 marked Beretta pistols and MK23 H&Ks will rise in value as time goes by.

June 9, 2007, 10:49 PM

Freedom Arms revolvers, of any model or caliber are only going to hold or increase in value. Certain models/calibers will do better than others of course, but across the line there's almost certainly no loser.

If I were to pick one that's already looking good for rarity, it'd be an F/A in .475 Linebaugh.


June 10, 2007, 12:23 AM
Try to find a HK P7M13, they are no longer made and are quite rare.

Ala Dan
June 10, 2007, 03:37 AM
Just to give you an idea, collectibles in the minds of many are
considered to be rare or hard to get firearms. For me, such is the
case with 2nd series (1947-1972) Colt D-frame Detective Specials.
I thrive on these "crown jewel" snubbies of .38 Special caliber due
to the fact that 1947 was my birth year; and I only will buy those
that I consider "collector grade" quality. Currently, I have two blue
1966 Colt Detective Specials; and a factory nickel 1971 model that
has only been test fired six times~! :scrutiny:;):D

Just Jim
June 10, 2007, 08:26 AM
I believe that Smith&Wesson pre lock guns will be more collectable as we go. Big changes in guns like the addition of a lock makes the last generation collectable. Just like early Kimbers, the Pre II guns have started to have a following.


June 10, 2007, 01:08 PM
The Smith & Wesson pinned, recessed, or blued revolvers will most certainly be collectible. They already are.......especially if they are 5 screw guns.

Colt DA revolvers will be very collectible. Any of them. Colt stopped making them. You can still find Colt Army Specials for a decent price. Buy while you can!

Colt 1911s will always hold value.

Some of the dark horse future stars I predict are:
Ruger MKIIs and MKIs.
early SW1911s.
Smith & Wesson Victory models
any C&R handgun

and are you ready..........
first generation Glocks.

June 10, 2007, 02:06 PM
p7m7 :D

June 10, 2007, 04:13 PM
I'd love to have one of those things!

June 10, 2007, 04:50 PM
I've finding most things COLT are in demand and also vintage S&W wheelguns.

June 10, 2007, 05:02 PM
If you want to start collecting handguns, I'd start with the manufacturer that you know. You mentioned Pythons. They are collectable; less collectable than many of the other Colt Double Action revolvers, but still collectable.

The S&W reovlers that are collectable now willl become even more collectable. Look for the models that grab you that are pre-1980. I would choose blue and nickel plated guns. Eventually all pre-lock Smiths will become collectable.

Buy high quality guns in 98% or better condition. Try to buy your guns with the original box. If you pay a fair price, they will hold their value and appreciate somewhat. There will always be models that collectors have more interest in than others. For example, people are really interested in the Colt Diamondbacks. Buy the more rare variations in any handgun. Buy references. Study. Learn. Do it because it's fun and you are interested. You are preserving history.

June 10, 2007, 06:40 PM
Thanks all. Seems like there are more collectible handguns than I imagined.
Probably will start with a Python since it can be shot without significant value reduction and it is fun, which is what it is all about.

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