Brand new 19-3


July 3, 2010, 10:13 AM
I "won" a new in box 19-3 on GB. It's not going to be here until next week.

I paid a bit for it. Decided to check out the inflation information. The gun has a price of $345 on the box.

Here's what I found:

Seven Ways to Compute the Relative Value of a U.S. Dollar Amount, 1774 to Present
In 2009, $345.00 from 1972 is worth:

$1,770.00 using the Consumer Price Index

$1,420.00 using the GDP deflator

$1,690.00 using the unskilled wage

$1,970.00 using the Production Worker Compensation

$2,710.00 using the nominal GDP per capita

$3,970.00 using the relative share of GDP

With shipping and charges I figure I paid about 50% of the price using the consumer price index. It is right in line with what I paid for the brand new 25 Classic .45 colt.

Another exercise was to run the compound interest. $345 at 2.4% is $858. If I had put the $345 in the bank and left it there at that rate I would have the $ to buy the gun.

I'm not trying to justify the buy. I had the cash and wanted the gun. I guess what I'm looking at is the relative value of holding a fairly common gun as a collector for investment purposes. I figure this will be a shooter.

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July 3, 2010, 10:23 AM
That's a long post and a lot of figuring for buying a gun. I ask myself two questions, do I have the money and do I want the gun enough to spend the money. If the answer is yes to both then I don't care how much it cost.
How long is the barrel? Show it when you get it.

July 3, 2010, 11:29 AM
Far too many calculations and justifications for purchasing the gun.

You wanted it, you had the $, you now own it.

That's all the "figuring" you need! :)

Photos are mandatory for when it arrives.

July 3, 2010, 12:00 PM
FYI, in 1972 $345 would have bought you at least two M-19's and several cases of ammo. Full MSRP was around $130, and then just like now we didn't pay MSRP at our local GS.


July 3, 2010, 03:04 PM
Full MSRP was a little closer to 150 I believe.

July 7, 2010, 05:10 AM
The gun has a price of $345 on the box.

If that is the case, that price is from a sticker applied to a resale vendor post-2000 and not at all the actual price paid in 1972. I recall seeing ANIB guns like that for $300 as recently as 2002. I don't have a '72 catalog at hand, but the '79 retail price was $230-something or less, and the street price more like $210. Keep in mind that was after the high inflation of the mid-70s. I do have a Ruger Blackhawk .357 ANIB from 1973 and the store reatail sticker on it was $101.10. An S&W model 19 was not 350% of the price of a Ruger at the same time. I think it was more like about $190 retail and $170 street or less in '72.

July 7, 2010, 09:07 AM
Full MSRP was a little closer to 150 I believe.

Exactly. According to the Gun Digest of that year, full retail for the Model 19 was $145 in 1973 dollars (I don't have a 1972 Gun Digest). That's about $692 in 2009 dollars, or about retail for similar guns S&W sells today, and a bit less than what the OP says he paid. That's a lot for a used run of the mill Model 19, regardless of condition.

Guns can be good investments, but not in the same way as gold or T-bills. The trick is to buy underpriced guns and then sell them for market value. The one way you are almost guaranteed to lose money is to pay full retail for a gun and then wait for the price to climb.

The Bushmaster
July 7, 2010, 09:15 AM
Congrats on your purchase of a S&W Model 19. To hell with the price then and now. Enjoy your purchase.

July 7, 2010, 09:17 PM
Here's a 19-3 I found a few years back...

July 9, 2010, 01:27 AM

Congratulations on your new Model 19-3. I'm eye balling a model 19 where I live myself--new in box too. I wouldn't get bent on how much you paid for the gun, just enjoy the piece of history and fine firearm you purchased. My uncle is a pretty financially intelligent guy and he basically says guns track inflation but don't beat it. I'm in ********** where gun prices are at minimum $100-$150 higher than average. I pretty much ignore it when people say "you coulda that that gun f'er $29.95 where I live..."

July 10, 2010, 11:23 AM
It arrived yesterday.

As advertised, nib. My dealer looked it over. The cylinder had been turned. There were three ports showing powder, and he said that was what the factory was supposed to do, fire every other cylinder. Gun was dry as a bone.

Looking for range time.

The Bushmaster
July 10, 2010, 12:07 PM
Clean it, lube it, load it and enjoy...NICE!!

July 10, 2010, 12:13 PM
Wow. What a beautiful gun!!!!!! As you can tell from my name, I'm a fan of the 19-3.

Now get it off that Glock mat before it gets infected!

July 10, 2010, 12:22 PM
I love that mat. Got it off a prize table at a fun shoot, with a nice black apron to match and a bag of cleaning products. I have a couple Glocks, but have never detail stripped one. Lots of 1911 detail strips and now some S&W work as well.

None of my guns object to the work area.

July 10, 2010, 12:32 PM
I picked up a 1973 Smith and Wesson Model 19-3 P&R model with original box, documentation and warranty papers. It's a 6" blued model, and I got it for an extremely cheap price. It's in good condition, but not absolutely mint. I don't think it's been fired much, but it has some holster wear on the grips and the barrel. It's still very tight, with no front/rear cylinder play. It's a lot of fun to shoot, but I can't afford to shoot magnum loads through it very often.

July 10, 2010, 12:34 PM
That is one beautiful gun. They just don't make them like that anymore.
I hope you enjoy shooting it.

July 10, 2010, 02:07 PM
I tend to forget about ammo prices with the reloading. Magnums cost a tiny bit more for the increased amount of powder, otherwise, same primer and bullets in .38 Special or .357 for me. I don't load very hot, in fact many of my .357s are barely above .38 +.

The Bushmaster
July 10, 2010, 02:56 PM
Waiting very impatiently for a range report. Sooo...Get off of here and get it done!!

July 10, 2010, 03:03 PM
Very nice. I like the grips, very much.

July 10, 2010, 04:03 PM
No range time today. Huge event at my club. Maybe Sunday, maybeMonday after work.I have 600 rounds all set to go.

July 10, 2010, 05:37 PM
Saw a used 19-3 4" blued at the gunshow today. I used to carry one for five years between 1974-1979 as a patrolman, and thought that it was an excellent weapon. This one at the show had some bluing wear mostly at the muzzle on the right side, and the target grips were worn, one slight crack, and one or two minor dents, but with most of the finish. The blueing on the gun was about 92-95%, and the timing was perfect, the action smooth as silk. They were asking $400, but wouldn't let me walk away, offering the gun for $350. I bought it. Shoots just like my old one, and probably has about the same amount of wear as mine did after the five years I carried it. If I had a mint one, I'd be shy about carrying, using it, and shooting it. This one I will get to enjoy.

July 10, 2010, 05:49 PM

As I was reading your post and got to the part where you wrote "...but wouldn't let me walk away, offering the gun for $350.", I thought you might buy it even before I got to the next line. I would have to if I were there. Very difficult to walk away from nice older S&W revolvers. Great acquisition.

July 11, 2010, 10:19 PM
Went to the range this afternoon with my neighbor.

I had about 600 rounds for 38/357.

Started off with mild .357 to get sighted in at 20 yards. Gun was shooting just a tad high and left for me with factory setting. A couple clicks and I was good. Just ran it hard for 200 rounds on paper. Some S/A but mostly D/A. Get a sight picture and pull straight through. The trigger was not as nice as the one that has been fired hundreds/thousands more, but was very good. I wasn't shooting 2" groups, but rarely had a flyer outside of the 6" target.

I had some medium .357s, and rand 50 of them. Great shooter. Best groups.

I had a bunch of very mild .38 Specials. My buddy and I engaged in a plink fest. Golf balls and spent shotgun hulls out to 35-40 yards. He was shooting a 6" 19-3 I found at a gun shop a few weeks ago. I bought it and he immediately said he could never find a gun like that, and had been looking for a couple years. I found it on a fluke. Didn't have a deep need for it so sold it for what I paid.

What a kick, dueling 19-3s. We went through a couple hundred rounds in short order.

I did shoot the 10-6 with the new Tyler T grips. Much improved.

As expected, I'm delighted with this gun. Now the question is do I need the other one?

evan price
July 11, 2010, 11:38 PM
iirc in 1989 I wanted a new Mod.19 and they were $299 at the time. Didn't wind up buying one then.

July 12, 2010, 12:58 AM
I just realized, I reload, so all my guns are free. I also spend WAY more on supplies than the gun.

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