Should I trade? When are you willing to trade?


July 30, 2003, 03:44 AM
OK, another one of these...

I am thinking about selling/trading a few guns and I want to know where you all stand on trading/selling and if you think my situation warrants it.

I know there are those out there who say "never trade or sell anything for any reason (except maybe if absolutely needed for food or rent)", others only trade if they really dislike a gun or rare other occasions, others out there consider just about every gun they own potential trade fodder.

I am of the school that says "don't trade, you'll regret it", however I recognize that there are situations that call for it. For some of these options I'm considering I'm pretty sure it is appropriate to sell (the first two), for the second two I'm not 100% sure.

Right now I am a graduate student (finally) so I am pretty poor. There are also several guns, or classes of guns I don't yet have, that I strongly want. I really can only afford to buy one for the rest of the year, and a cheaper one at that (up to $400-450) if I buy outright. If I trade for every purchase I might be able to get to three or four and if I only trade two (or three if cheaper guns) I can get to three (probably). I do have a few guns that I don't shoot that much because they don't quite do it for me and I have one that I like a lot but it would be easy to replace later and it could help me get something that is perhaps a bit more appropriate.

Some of these guns I had no problem with sitting around both when I had enough money to buy something I wanted and when I had no money at all for guns (or much for much shooting). However, right now when kind of borderline- almost enough for a couple things I want- it really kind of bothers me to have a few that I don't use or don't much like.

I don't use my Ruger 10/22 very much and I don't like it much. I don't know what I could get (since it is cheap to begin with) but getting $50-100 now while I'm very broke and using that to help buy something I'd use is preferable to sitting gathering dust at a time that I am quite broke (I have some money, but not a lot of disposable income). I'd probably use the proceeds to help with the last two options (possibly along with those trades/sales).

I have a Colt Police Positive Special that, while a good gun and probably great for carry (though when in a CCW situation I'd prefer a 3" K-frame), I never really warmed up to very much. It very rarely gets taken out to shoot. I also got a very good price on it so if I sold this on my own (instead of through a dealer) I could probably make money on it- and almost finance another K-frame S&W (I looovvveee S&W K-frames).

I have a Remington 581 that I don't like that much. I don't use it as much as I could because I just don't find it much fun. Also, the wood on this model is pretty boring and basic. It is a great shooter though- with a cheap Tasco scope I do pretty well at 50yds, typical .22lr rifle distances it seems (and I'm not a very good rifle shot). I would love a CZ .22 rifle. Even if the bolt action .22lr CZ isn't any more fun, the CZ wood is often quite nice and one must have a .22lr bolt rifle so I think I'd prefer the CZ since it will at least have cosmetic appeal.

Since it seems like it will be yet another year before I'm likely to end up in a carry state full-size guns seem to make more sense. I don't have much need for carry guns. However, I will be visiting a few states this year (checking out graduate programs I may transfer to next year) that are CCW and I will have a FL non-resident permit that will cover many of them so a carry gun may be nice. Also, I just like small guns. Instead of either a more useful (for now) full-size, or a nice to have compact, I may trade a gun I actually like for something more suitable for carry and let the one non-trade gun be a full-size.

I do think .380 is a perfectly adequate caliber for CCW, however if it is one or the other (and if a 9mm can be afforded) I'd much rather have the 9mm. The .380 is best if you can't afford an appropriately sized 9mm, or in addition to the 9mm for the added versatility (plus I just love the 9mm caliber). I've been quite happy with my Bersa and I've intended it to be a pocket gun when it can fit that duty and occasional belt gun when I got to a carry state. However, there are several more appropriate guns for my only CCW auto that I'd like and the Bersa is easy to replace (available in MD and can be found still for $225). Another consideration is that Bersa .380s have a very good reputation so if I sold mine and replaced it later I have no doubt that I would replace it with one every bit as good as my current Bersa.

In case it helps your decision if I should sell to know what I'd get, if I sold it to help finance a 9mm CCW type piece some of what I'd consider are:
-new Taurus PT911
-used Taurus PT908 (not avail. new anymore)
-new or used S&W 908
-new or used S&W 910
-used Kahr (probably K9)
-used S&W 3913, 639, 439, or similar

So do you think any of my trade possibilities is worthwhile? Which ones? Should I just hold on to everything and simply limit my purchases for the rest of the year to just one?

Have you ever been in a simliar situation? What was your choice? Do you think you made the right decision?

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July 30, 2003, 04:06 AM
Here is what I would do, get rid of everything but the Bersa .380. Buy a Cz-452 bolt action rifle and a good 9mm. I would pick the Kahr K-9 but that choice depends on price and what else is cheaper. The S&W 3913 would be my second choice. I got rid of my 10/22 and I never missed it. My CZ-452 is much more accurate and it never jams.;)

I don't like Colt revolver much so i would sell the heck out of that Police positive. Try selling to a private party if you can, you get more money that way. Also, you should get a good .22lr pistol, a Ruger MKII or 22/45 would be a good choice.

July 30, 2003, 04:37 AM
Ah, yes. I keep forgetting about a .22 pistol. Other than a service caliber CCW size pistol that is the biggest hole in my "collection". Maybe instead of another full-size 9mm as the one purchase without a trade I should get the .22, maybe trade the Bersa for the CCW sized 9mm, trade the Colt for a Smith and the two .22 rifles for the CZ .22 rifle (with both being sold I could probably do the CZ with no cash outlay and maybe some back).

You say keep the Bersa. Hmm. A .22 pistol is usually pretty cheap. Maybe get a used 9mm CCW piece outright, revolver trade (possibly with very little out of pocket if I shop well), Remington for the CZ (with some cash) and Ruger 10/22 for Ruger 22/45 or Taurus 94 (with probably $100-150 extra). Hey with that combo I'd even keep the Bersa :D, though no used Beretta, used HP, new Taurus PT92 or another new CZ :( (one of those would be the "one full-sized 9mm" if I go with one of the options that includes that). Hmmmm. :scrutiny:

You know, I do have several medium framed revolvers (two K-frames and one L-frame) and I have no .22lr handguns. Should I wait on a K-frame .38spl and sell my .38spl Colt PPS for a .22 of some kind? However, that would leave me without any medium framed .38s (only a J-frame equivelent .38 and three .357s so I will be able to shoot .38s).

Still not sure exactly how to do it but you had a good idea or two that helped lead me to some ideas. That is exactly what I want. Anyone else.

July 30, 2003, 07:17 AM
chaim, I'm not going to make any specific recommendations to you, other than to say that I'm of the opinion that any gun that isn't liked and shot is just taking up space in the safe. Unless there is some "history" to such a gun (i.e., was in the family, or was brought back from the war, etc.), I'd clean it up and trade or sell it in a heart beat. Some are collectors, or wealthy enough to give away guns they don't use. I'm neither. I'm a shooter, and if it doesn't get shot, I "trade" it for something that does. I've sold or traded some really nice guns that I bought and subsequently didn't like, including a tack driving Rem 700 VLS, a rock solid Ruger PC4, and others. I sold a Kel-Tec P11 that I liked ... because I like the Glock 27 that replaced it better.

So from my perspective, decide on what you really want and lose the others to help pay for the ones you'll use and appreciate. Unused guns are "opportunity costs" in my opinion. If you're going to stockpile anything, make it ammo!

July 30, 2003, 08:03 AM
For my money, if you don't like it, if it doesn't work for you, if you won't trust your life to it, or if you don't have fun with it, get rid of it. Lots of people will tell you to never sell your guns; I'm not one of them.

I've been through bad DA triggers, sights that fall off after one range session, autos that won't lock the slide, autos that won't make it though a magazine without a FTE, "new" revolvers so out of time they're unfireable, finishes that rub off so fast you can see yellow under the bluing after a few times in and out of a holster, rust from a day's carry in a hot climate, inaccurate weapons, and weapons that just didn't fit me have all been reasons to dump a bad one.

I've owned a lot of weapons, I only regret selling two, a Sig 239 and a SW 6906. Keep what you trust and makes you happy.

July 30, 2003, 10:24 AM
I'd go with the emerging consensus here, Chaim: If you don't like it (i.e., enjoy having and shooting it) then get rid of it. Try to turn a profit and sequester the funds into a "dream" fund. There are some who advocate never ever getting rid of a gun, but other than in a tongue-in-cheek way, I'm not one of them.

TFL Survivor

July 30, 2003, 10:52 AM
I sold my Kahr MK40 ... I shipped it Monday (got a nice email from the buyer ... he seems happy).

I miss the little guy already

I know I'm going to regret it, but I will soon have an AR-15 so that will help.

July 30, 2003, 11:01 AM
I consider trades when I have prospects in mind. I then weigh the 10/22 & Police Positive vs. Kahr or S&W pistol. Plus, if it's a trade, I'll try to shoot the prospective guns I'm considering. Try gathering as much info as possible before you go through with it!

Steve Smith
July 30, 2003, 11:03 AM
Toss the chaff and get what you want.

My meager "collection" continues to define my actual preferences, rather than my two week urges.

Don Gwinn
July 30, 2003, 11:46 AM
I used to say I wouldn't trade, but the truth is, everyone buys guns that don't really fit them right, or use a caliber that's too much trouble, or whatever.

I have a few guns I'll never trade. My Rem 1120 lightweight was gift from my father at a time when we really couldn't afford it, and I won't let that one go until my sons are old enough to take it (and then we'll need another one!) My P220 fits my hand, is utterly reliable, accurate, cheap to feed, etc, so it must never leave, either.

But I had a full-size USP45 that was just too big for my hands, so I traded it for a Glock 30. I had a Taurus M44 that I never really shot much for one reason and another, and someone offered me a nice sporterized Swedish Mauser for it, so I traded and I'm happy with my new Mauser (everybody should have at least one!)

Then I bought an Airsoft Colt Commander and noticed how well it fits my hand, and I've always liked the 1911 pattern but never owned one (again, everybody should have at least one,) so when a High Roader contacted me and asked if I'd like to trade my Glock for his Randall, I went for it. The Glock is a well-made, reliable gun, but it just isn't quite right for my grip. The Randall sounds like it needs a couple of personal touches to make it the equal of my Glock, but at the end of the day I'll have a firearm that's better for me and hopefully the other guy will have a Glock that he'll shoot and enjoy more than he did the Randall.

July 30, 2003, 01:54 PM
Here's my advice: If you are not using it, or if it doesn't work for you anymore, trade or sell it.

I finally got my Ruger Red Label I wanted for so long, and got a pretty good deal on in. Worked great for pheasants, but in my area of Minnesota pheasants are few and far between. I carried it a lot, but shot it little. I could swing it nice and hit running rabbits, but the 12 gauge tended to chew up the meat too much. So I figured I'd use it for skeet. No go there. I need a longer barrel. So back to the Remington 870 I went.

I also bought a Para P12 for my Para "collection". Didn't need it, never shot it. Great gun, just no use for it. I just sold them both and am putting the money into my reloader which will get me more ammo.

I also came across a Ruger Redhawk .41 mag that is real nice and I had to buy it since only 5000 were made. Cool caliber and kind of "collectible". Now I am not sure I want it. I really have no use for it.

So first off I guess buy what you will use (if you are a shooter on a limited budget). This will save you money in the long run instead of trading all the time. Also I think if you really want your dream gun, save the money for it instead of buying that one that's just ok. You will be happier in the long run. In my opinion I'd rather have 1 gun, lots of ammo and range time than a safe full of guns I can't shoot.

July 30, 2003, 04:55 PM
If you have the light weight Bersa, I would say hang on to it until you can find a 9mm that is as easy to carry and shoot. I love 9mm also but aside from the Kahrs, I haven't found a 9mm that would be as easy to conceal and shoot as the Bersa. I have gone through most of the med frame 9mms and I am thinking of getting a Bersa. I guess, I am comming full circle from where you are right now. You may sell the Bersa and find that you want or need it back again. The good thing about the Bersa is that they sell for about the same used as new. I have been looking for a good used Bersa but I will just buy a new one for the extra $20.

July 30, 2003, 04:55 PM
You can learn from my experiences. I tried my wife's system. If she hasn't worn a piece of clothing in a year she gives it to Goodwill.

I've tried that. When I haven't fired a gun for a year I identify it for sale/trade. Then I take it out and fire it to be sure it's OK for sale.

This reminds me of what I like about it. Since I've now fired the gun, it's good for another year.


July 30, 2003, 04:58 PM
Actually you've started the right process by writing down your possible choices and reasons for sale or trade.

Continuing the "Ben Franklin" method, list what you have, what you want, and the pros and cons of each.

Imagine yourself at the range, in the field, or against the BG without the old but with the new. Or imagine yourself as you are but with the money you saved in your hand. What makes you feel better?


Dave R
July 30, 2003, 06:43 PM
Life is too short to hang on to guns you don't like or use.

I have traded in one or two and am happy with the results. Had two 12ga pumps. Traded on in on a P-32. Happy. Had a 20ga SXS. Traded it for a nicer 12ga SXS that weighs a hair less. Happy.

Your collection should evolve with your needs and tastes.

July 30, 2003, 10:10 PM
I've sold (traded) only 2 guns from my collection. First was an AMT Govt. (Nuff said) Second was a Taurus Millenium PT-111, which I couldn't get used to as the mag release button was very touchy and in the absolute wrong place for my grip evidently. After buying a Glock 26 and finding out the PT was nowhere near the 26 in anything but girth, I traded the PT for my current Kimber Ultra CDP. Yes, I took a bath on it, but oh well. If I don't like it, it goes at first chance.

July 30, 2003, 11:00 PM
chaim, have you decided what you're gonna do? Did we help at all?

July 31, 2003, 08:15 AM
Make your trades or sales, just remember to always go up in value. Find what you want in a better grade of gun and be prepared to kick in a few $$$ or a deal sweetener. In time you will have a nicer collection as you continue to improve your current stock without breaking the bank.

July 31, 2003, 01:02 PM
So far I decided for sure on those that were more obvious and I had just about decided upon before I posted.

Before I put the ad up for the Ruger on this site someone contacted me just based on this thread. Unfortunately he wasn't local. Even limiting it to basically local people (MD and adjoining states- I don't want to deal with an FFL) I've had a great response. I have a "waiting list" in case the first person doesn't want it after all. People must really love 10/22s (I already knew that). I knew how great they were supposed to be but just couldn't warm to it much as hard as I tried (I guess everyone has a gun or two that just doesn't do it for them, even though most people love it, like Tamara with CZs- I was just unlucky enough to buy one of mine).

I've also placed an ad here for the Colt (local MD sale only so I don't have to deal w/ an FFL, and so I can get it unregistered from my name when it is sold).

The Remington and the Bersa I still haven't decided about. I'll probably trade or sell the Remington for the CZ but it has been a good gun (incredibly accurate) so I don't know for sure. The Bersa is a gun I really like quite a bit, it is just that if I can't afford something more powerful by itself and I can get something similar in size and more powerful by trading it that might be a good idea.

July 31, 2003, 01:24 PM
...nothing wrong with trading something you don't particularly want anymore for something that you do.

July 31, 2003, 05:57 PM
I don't know Md gun laws. How do you tranfer the registration of a handgun? If you are required to register handguns, what enforces the transfer of the registration at the time of the sale without it being documented thru a dealer?
I ask these questions because you stated you want to sell, but skip going thru an FFL holder.

August 8, 2003, 05:29 AM
Majic, private sales have to go through the state police. The seller and buyer go to the local Maryland State Police Barracks, fill out all the same state paperwork you would if buying from a dealer (no yellow form though) and then you have to wait 7 days before you can turn over the gun (same waiting period). To enforce the waiting period they keep a page of the paperwork that they mail you after 7 days. Then you need to have part of that page signed to show that delivery was made and you need to return that page to the police. Once that page is returned the gun is now registered with the new buyer and no longer registered to you. Very simple:banghead: . Still better than going through an out of state dealer as an individual and wondering if I missed anything that can get me in trouble.

August 8, 2003, 09:29 AM
Thanks Chaim,
I had heard it mentioned before about transfering registrations, but never knew how you did it.

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