anyone here downsize their collection out of choice?


April 5, 2012, 11:20 PM
...and not out of necessity? Along of the lines of "less is more" and "keep the best, sell the rest" I'm thinking of selling off at least 2/3's of my collection. Anyone here do the same and care to share their thoughts? Any regrets?

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April 5, 2012, 11:26 PM
I've been thinking of doing the same thing, so I'll be interested in seeing the comments by others. I enjoy the buying and having part of the hobby, but there comes a time when enough is enough; especially when I end up with 2 or 3 or 4 of the same gun. It would be a nice way to put some instant bulk to the savings account.

Arkansas Paul
April 5, 2012, 11:29 PM
I've never considered downsizing, but I'm not to the point where I own duplicates of the same thing either. At that point, I would probably say, enough is enough.

April 5, 2012, 11:57 PM
It's crossed my mind from time to time but I've never done it. Afraid I'd regret it down the road.

April 6, 2012, 12:13 AM
Yup. Over the past year I've sold 6. Don't fire 'em, so why keep 'em? If it wasn't for the CA AW ban, I'd sell more.

April 6, 2012, 12:29 AM
When I recieved my fathers guns just weeks before he passed away I relized our collections were close to being the same. I guess I built my collection on what I grew up with and our tastes were similare. I am not going to get rid of any of the guns that were handed down from him. I didn't need three .270's, two that were my father's, I don't regret getting rid of my Remington
jam-o-matic. Three .380's, I do regret selling my Bersa Thunder. I got rid of a M&P-15/22 don't miss it but kept all the other .22's. I also sold a Left handed bolt action Ruger MK77 .300 win Mag but that was because of regrets (never getting to go on that Elk hunt with my dad). For the most part I have two of each a lot more in .22's and 12ga but only one 20ga in the bunch, I think I need to correct that. I had a more diverse pistol selection so some odd balls there. I would have to say no I do not regret getting rid most of the guns except the one. There were some others but if I didn't have a use/need/sentimental attachment they were gone.

April 6, 2012, 12:35 AM
I've only been into the shooting sport scene for just over 3 years. I'm fortunate enough to have enough discretionary income that I've managed to haul in just over 40 firearms. Mind you some of them were definetly lower cost "rescue guns". So it's not as rosey as it may sound. I LOVE a tinkering challenge... :D

Anyhow, yeah, I bought a few things that after trying them I just don't shoot anymore. I really need to sell off about a half dozen or so things that didn't click and are simply taking up room in the safe.

April 6, 2012, 12:38 AM
About 4 or 5 years ago I had over 70 guns. No money needed, just realized I didnt shoot a lot of them and I'd rather have a few things I'd always wanted. Sold off some ARs I didnt shoot and used the funds to build a suppressed SBR that I really like. Sold off several 1911s and had a long slide 10mm built. Collection is down to the mid 20s now, and I'm much happier with it. Ended up with a bunch of guns I really enjoy shooting plus some extra cash.

April 6, 2012, 12:52 AM
I am down to 8 from about 40. None of them hold any sentimental value except one, a glenfield 60 that will go to my nephew or niece as it was their great grandmothers. I hope to cull two more and buy one, a 308 AR.

Time is money and unused guns cost both. One high quality firearm is better than two or three lower quality guns. I would rather wear one or three out and enjoy them instead of not using them

April 6, 2012, 01:09 AM
In the process right now. No regrets yet.

The funds go to advancing the ammo/gear for the one's I'm keeping though.

April 6, 2012, 05:00 AM
I'm in a "pruning" mode right now. Just keeping the best of the collection

April 6, 2012, 05:09 AM
I've been doing this for the last couple years in the name of 'caliber consolidation', ie Nato calibers. Of course during that time I've bought more than I've sold:confused:. The 'family' guns are another thing, those will be passed on when the time comes.

April 6, 2012, 05:56 AM
I really need to liquidate about half my accumulation. My problem is that I can't ever find one that I want to let go of other than a couple of rifles nobody else wants.

April 6, 2012, 07:45 AM
I sold several back in '08. I had guns that I didn't really care for and hardly used and the used gun market was pretty pricey at the time. Used the proceeds to purchase a new rifle, smith services and a fine piece of glass and still had a few bucks left over. I think it's good to thin the herd every once in awhile.

April 6, 2012, 08:10 AM
Thanks for the insight, I'm thinking I will be happier with less, and more accurate & more proficient with what's left.

April 6, 2012, 08:20 AM
I went from having 40 guns that never got shot to having 8 guns that get shot every week. For some unknown reason my shooting has improved greatly :).

Just my .02,

The War Wagon
April 6, 2012, 08:21 AM
I streamlined my collection after 9/11 - got rid of every pistol that wasn't a 1911 in .45, and that was about a dozen pistols!

That's when I started focusing on my rifle collection as well. Primarily 5.56 AR's.

April 6, 2012, 08:59 AM
I'm a big believer in this. My needs and interests changed over time and what I just had to have 20 or so years ago sat unfired in the safe after the initial interest waned. My safe was over stuffed with a very eclectic and really not very useful "collection", my ammo box was pretty bare, and I had no money to buy the type of guns I was now interested in.

Not being a wealthy man I can only justify devoting a certain amount of my resources to unused possesions, so I sold or traded off the safe queens and used the proceeds to get guns I would use. I now have far fewer guns, but all are very good quality and I have a decent amount of ammo so a days trip to the range won't exhaust my supplies, as used to be the case. I also shoot more often, and shoot better as a result. Imagine that!

April 6, 2012, 09:01 AM
If archery season works out for me.. I may be getting rid of some guns..

April 6, 2012, 09:15 AM
I've done the same thing. I had bought a couple of .44-40 "nice" guns. Never ended up shooting them. Also had a Delta Elite. Beautiful gun, but I didn't shoot it because I reload and the brass flew twenty feet. I spent more time chasing brass than shooting.

I've pared down to my hunting guns, varmint rifles, a few pistols, etc. Right now I'm struggling with selling my Browning BPCR. I never shoot it, but they only made 328 for one year. Could never be replaced.

I think most guys would be far better off if they disposed of guns they haven't shot and buy good scopes and reloading equipment.

April 6, 2012, 09:23 AM
My safe was over stuffed with a very eclectic and really not very useful "collection"

That's why I referred to my collection as an 'accumulation'. Other than having an example of every US main battle rifle of the 20th century (semi-auto) and a Model 37 Winchester in every gauge (except 28) there's no real rhyme or reason to mine.
April 6, 2012, 09:27 AM
I've gotten to the point that my "culls" are stellar examples. Hard yes, but sold with no regrets. It's nice to slip the collection down to a more manageable and enjoyable level.

April 6, 2012, 09:35 AM
Post #18 says it all. My collection will continue to fluctuate over time as my interests change and if something just sits unused and has no sentimental value it will go away in exchange for a newer interest or more ammo. I'm at the point in my life were accumulating more stuff is low on the priority list and simplifying is more appealing.

April 6, 2012, 09:39 AM
I have over the years sold guns that do not bring a smile to my face or a rumbling in my stomach. But never for the sake of having less guns. The money was always used to fund other guns.

April 6, 2012, 09:48 AM
I never really had an extensive "collection" of guns, rather I identifed roles I needed a gun for and then picked the tool to fill that role. So, no real duplications in my gun closet (except perhaps rimfires, I probably have more .22's than I really need) and no need to "thin" the heard.

The only gun I ever sold was my first one, a percussion Hawken rifle when I needed to pay for books at college on semester and came up short. I've regretted selling that gun for decades, now.

April 6, 2012, 09:49 AM
In the last year I've reduced my long gun total by half but doubled my handgun total, as a minimalist I own less than 12 guns total.

April 6, 2012, 09:51 AM

April 6, 2012, 10:06 AM
I had a few that hadn't been fired in five years or more that I sold and don't miss. It was getting to the point where I either had to sell some, or buy another safe...

April 6, 2012, 10:13 AM
I've been careful NOT to buy stuff that I don't need, or to sell it off soon after realizing that it'll do nothing particularly unique.

April 6, 2012, 10:15 AM
I've pared down some by choice but it was to fund better guns. I sold 2-$400 guns and bought a really nice HK P7. I sold a few more mid priced guns and got a near new Kimber Gold Combat pre-series II, etc. Sometimes less is more. If I haven't shot it in a year, I begin to think what I can get that is better and make a move. 2 for 1 or 3 for 1. It doesn't hurt as much if you have a nicer, newer toy that is a keeper for life.

April 6, 2012, 10:19 AM
I have. I have, for the present, divested of Milsurps...and do not have any regrets. I had all non-US things and except for the commie stuff, ammo was always a problem...find it, pay for it, it is or is not corrosive, it is or is not 50 years old (and for that matter 50 years old is or is not a problem)...etc. Just a big hassle. Will I ever go back to Milsurp...maybe. Lots of love for the Garand with lots of good reason. But even there, ammo issues...bend your op rod etc. I think if I found a really nice model of 1917 in 30-'06 I would go for it. I passed on a well-done bubba of a Springfield and probably shouldn't have.

I have also divested of some handguns usually to trade toward something that I desired more.

I also divested of guns under "finanacial duress" that I wish I had not but now, having replaced them, the sting has passed.

April 6, 2012, 10:35 AM
I was kinda the same way with mil-surps. They're made specifically for battle and military use. Since I don't see myself doing battle any time soon, they're gone. There's a reason sporting guns are significantly different from most battle type rifles. If that's your thing, knock yourself out. Just not for me. FWIW, I do have three AR's.

Out of all the guns I've sold, there are very few I regret selling. What I do regret is not having shot more.

April 6, 2012, 10:42 AM
I have never sold off part of my collection but I have decided that once I buy 2 or 3 (probably 2) more guns my collection will be complete. I just don't need a ton of the same type of thing and I will have a nice example of almost every type of gun I really want to own.

April 6, 2012, 10:44 AM
I prune things from the collection from time to time. Things that do not get shot get sold for things that might get shot. In the end life is too short to hold on to things I am not going to use and too short for regrets.... YMMV

April 6, 2012, 10:45 AM
I'm thinking about it...but like Larry H, it would be to upgrade. Trade off a bunch of the low-end stuff for a couple of high-end pieces.

April 6, 2012, 10:52 AM
I have a 9 shot revolver in 22lr and a savage 22lr left hand bolt action that I have been considering putting in the market. I have a custom 10/22 ruger and working on another, a 52C winchester and a Remington 513T that I will keep. I would like to sell my Savage 110c, but I can't my wife bought that one so I gotta keep it. Might just change the barrel and stock and consider it a new rifle.

April 6, 2012, 11:00 AM
I have. Each time I look to getting another gun safe (whatever number that puts me at). Before jumping, I look at every gun and run it through the... Have I shot it, handled it or referenced it fondly recently. Also, if I had lost it or had it been stolen would I have lamented it to the point of trying to replace it. After that, I slide some off to the side for moving on down the road and forestal the next safe for a little bit longer.

April 6, 2012, 11:04 AM
I ought to pare down my collection, a couple of rifles I never shoot anymore, one I haven't shot in 20 years. One was my first good hunting rifle, but I haven't hunted elk in years, needs to go. The others were my Pop's rifles, they will be passed on when I'm gone, won't sell them. 3 .22 rifles and 3 .22 revolver/pistols, how many does a guy need? Sentimental reasons for keeping some, others not so much. Need to get busy.

April 6, 2012, 11:25 AM
Things that do not get shot get sold for things that might get shot. In the end life is too short to hold on to things I am not going to use and too short for regrets.... YMMV That has been my theory for 35 years. Now that I look back, I am really trying to subscribe to the "too short for regrets." Things I have sold include, a Butch Searcy double rifle with exhibition grade English walnut that I bought in his early years when I thought I wanted to go to Africa, a Dakota 76 with exhibition grade English walnut, a Mannlicher Schoenauer 1952 rifle in mint condition, a couple of Merkle shotguns, a pre-64 minty Winchester model 70 in .257 Roberts with a low four digit serial number, and the list goes on...

April 6, 2012, 11:37 AM
My set of long arms has been carefully assembled over several decades starting with my first firearm when I was in the eighth grade (Marlin 80DL .22 bolt action repeater). One here, one there for specific purposes, needs or wants.

If I do any changeouts at this point (safe can no longer be added to in the long gun department), it would be to hand down an older gun to one of my kids and replace it with a much higher quality version. The 80DL comes to mind, I would like to have a top quality .22 bolt action repeater some day. Two of my three adult kids have nice .22 repeaters, third does not.

Handguns are a different story. Since my wife and I have CCW's, we are constantly making minor changes to our defensive posture. I have added duplicates of certain handguns in order to have guns located strategically around the property and in our vehicles rather than moving one around to several places.

I always have room for more handguns in the safe. I don't have enough Glocks for one thing. There are some vacant notches here and there (I'm looking, unsuccessfully to date, for a Ruger SP-101 in .22).

So, no downsizing in the future, just potential hand-downs to the kids and upsizing the handgun collection.


Carl Levitian
April 6, 2012, 11:43 AM
I sold off about 3/4ths of my guns in a big downsize some years ago. Just kept what I really used on a weekly basis out at the range. Felt totally liberating. The better half did the same. When we got done downsizing the guns, we did the same with the rest of our stuff. Felt like an iron ball was freed from out leg.

Gave some of them to the kids and grandkids, sold the rest. Now we just have what we had when we were married 41 years ago. A couple rifles, a couple handguns, and one set of fishing gear for each of us. Extra tools went too. I don't need 3 drills and 2 or three of everything. Now the house is so uncluttered and organized, we can find anything in a few minutes. We should have done it years ago.


April 6, 2012, 12:06 PM
Here's the long term study: In the 80's (I was in my mid-late 20's) I built a collection of American revolvers, Colt, Dan Wesson, Smith & Wesson. I shot them all on a regular basis. As I recall I had 14. By the time the 90's rolled around it just got to be too much, between casting and reloading I was spending many hours in prep for every hour shooting. I got married, had a couple of kids, a house, I just couldn't do it anymore. I loaded up all my .38 brass, kept just 4 (two .22's and two .38's) so I'd still have something to shoot if I wanted, and sold off everything, guns, presses, linotype stash, the works.

Now: Kids are grown, wife went back to school, I needed something to keep me busy. I got bored and the wife's not around for company much, and I need to get out of the house so she can study. I shoot up the last of my ammo stash in the Model 15 I kept. I buy a press just like my old dillon (an RL450). Start reloading. Decided the Model 15 I had kept as a house gun wasn't a good range gun, bought a 6" Model 66. Bought a 586 to rotate with the 66. Bought a High Standard .22 to go with the one I had kept. Bought a holster for the 66 on eBay. Didn't fit. Bought a Colt OP to fit the holster. Had a belt custom made to match the holster. Bought a second RL450. Bought a 9mm. Got a CHL, bought a .380. Bought a snub to back up the .380 so I wouldn't beat up the Colt Agent I had kept. Bought a bigger .380 for a range gun.

It's like riding a bicycle. Regrets? a couple. I could go buy whatever but I'm suffering from sticker shock. I should have kept one of the Pythons. And I miss my Model 25 in .45 ACP.

Hk Paul
April 6, 2012, 06:53 PM
Yeah, I downsized. I was not desperate for money but I realized I don't use half the guns I had. So I sold them- I'd rather have guns that I use than guns that just sit around and literally do nothing.

P5 Guy
April 6, 2012, 09:09 PM
Over the past couple of years I've sold off most all of the safe queens.
Down from over 60 to about 20, with more to go. BHO has made selling easier.
I've made up my mind that if there are more than I can carry there are too many.
One good hurricane and I would have been in trouble evacuating with all that?

Steve CT
April 6, 2012, 09:30 PM
Yes, and absolutely by choice. If I am not shooting it with any regularity, I consider selling it. I cut some slack for a couple of special guns, but I'm starting to move my $$$ toward starting (actually, restarting) to reload.

If they were intended for me to just look at, they would have a picture hook on them so I could hang them on the wall.

April 7, 2012, 02:09 PM
Yes. I've kept only those that get shot regularly or serve a purpose.

April 7, 2012, 02:11 PM
Yep. Moved to a small apt where space is at premium. Found myself shooting less so keeping just my good stuff and only buying what I'll use vs past habit of getting anything interesting.

Down to a bolt gun, an AR and a few handguns. I think I could be happy with an AR and a carry gun but I have some sentimental value with my bolt gun and 1911 even though both are for punching paper.

April 7, 2012, 03:50 PM
Depends on your definition of "choice". Given the choice to expand my family, I've made the choice to pare down my collection to repurpose cash into reducing a few debts, and to clear out needed space in what was my "gun room" ... now general storage space. For those that don't have the pleasure of raising a tribe yet, kids are (1) more expensive than you think and (2) take up much more of your space than you think.

So, I'm essentially trading Mosin's for Mickey Mouse, and Tokarevs for tu-tus.

April 7, 2012, 04:22 PM
Sold several milsurp pistols that I didn't shoot. Kind of liberating, also sold some other stuff (tools, furniture).

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April 7, 2012, 11:11 PM
I'm on the verge....

I started buying firearms in the early 80's, when I started working 60 plus hours a week.
I 'm late 40's, and got married for the first and only time 5 years ago...My current collection numbers about 80ish, although for about the last 7 years or so, I only shoot 4, or 5. My FA subguns would be the first to go, for sure....

April 8, 2012, 01:21 AM
I would love to be in the spot where some of you are. I've traded one gun so far but I dont think I could sell any! ps I'm only at 3 right now.. :(

April 8, 2012, 01:36 AM
I downsized due to the economy and the elections but not because I had to. I basically sold off my foreign / imported chambered stuff. Common domestic calibers ie. 30.06 and .38 are cheap, plentiful as are the components to load them. with the proceeds, I bough a chit load of ammo and reloading material.... I'm good for a while!

I learned my lesson last time when 7.62x39 disappeared and when it did trickle it it came with a 100% mark up. To me, there is no reason to own a gun that you can't shoot as often as you want.

I do indeed miss my SKS, Enfields and Mosin but people are already being subjected to price increases and back orders. Thank goodness I can avoid that stress this time around.

April 8, 2012, 01:55 AM
.22 rifle
.223 rifle
9mm handgun
10mm handgun
45 ACP handgun
20ga shotgun

That's what I got down to when I decided to downsize a ~200 gun collection down to my favorites. Covers everything, though I could get rid of the 9mm and 45 ACP and do everything I need with the 10mm.

April 8, 2012, 02:29 AM
I just get rid of the ones I decide just don't perform as I had hoped, in my hands anyway...

I usually buy used, and tend to buy a little more than I sell, so the inventory slowly grows rather than shrinks.

Same goes for guitars, tractors, and raggedy old trucks. My bride of 28 years doesn't complain, she understands the attraction, and recognizes that what I sell usually brings as much or more than I paid for it.

April 8, 2012, 05:36 AM
Thinning the herd has crossed my mind from time to time. But the pile keeps getting larger, even this year. Eventually I will force myself to sell off some stuff.

I got rid of most of the stuff I didn't really want or want to shoot already. But the bottom line is the herd keeps growing.

April 8, 2012, 06:27 AM
I have been working on a list of what to keep and what to get rid of for the last year. I figured while I am overseas I will try to make up my mind on what I want to hang onto and what I no longer need. So come Aug or Sep wach for some good adds.

I actuly start this prior to my deployment. I started selling off some of my exess stuff cause I couldn't find somthing I know I have in the gun room somewere. To many boxs of parts, mags and accesorys.

My plan is to try and keep the quality ones that I like and sell off most anything I have doubles on. I have done it before and will most likly do it again and agin. Sold everything but my Colt Goverment model and the handmedowns from Dad when I bought my first house. Built it back up from there.


April 8, 2012, 07:17 AM
Yep ... In 2000 I used GunBroker to sell my HK 91, 93, 94, SP-89 and USP Match to start a collage fund for my newborn daughter ... Unfortunately, for the last several years the value of those 5 guns is worth more than collage fund :(

In 2007 I used GunBroker again and sold 30 guns to buy a sports car ... It was my first and only brand new car ... $27K ... and i really wanted it. Now, 5 years old with 14K miles on it, its worth about $10K less. I knew the car would depreciate but I have, and still am enjoying the heck out of it.

I've been thinking about thinning the hurd again, but looking at the economy I think my guns will keep up with inflation better than cash ... So I may just buy a bigger, or another safe.

April 8, 2012, 07:42 AM
Over the years, I have sold a few guns and have sellers remorse over only one of them. Recently, I sold off several guns that I didn't shoot to finance the purchase of a new trap gun. I still have a couple of safe queens but have pared my collection down to 'quality over quanity'.

April 8, 2012, 07:46 AM
yeah, but mostly for spiritual reasons.
I don't need a pile of guns around just taking up space and providing something for me to be attached.
I simplified and got rid of a bunch of stuff.
The message in the community and in the gun rags is to have as much stuff as possible. I went the other way.

April 8, 2012, 09:35 AM
I downsized by about 2/3 of what I had. Don't miss a thing either as I find I'm happier with less. I had more S&W revolvers then you could count, not anymore. Just kept enough to enjoy. Rifles, had plenty in different cartridges and calibers. Simplified things by getting rid of 1/2 of them.

To be honest I could downsize more yet, there are guns I never shoot in the safe. For instance, a Ruger Red Label All Weather O/U. Beautiful shotgun, only Ruger I ever liked. Bought it for trap shooting, something I don't do anymore. I'm not a fan of shotguns with long barrels. This will be the next gun that leaves if I can get what I paid for it back.

I'll sell my collection not give it away.

April 8, 2012, 04:30 PM
I sold 11 guns out of my collection last summer. I may sell a few more this summer. I did an inventory of my collection and thought, "this is ridiculous! " So I pared it down.

April 8, 2012, 04:46 PM
Every time I sell a centerfire I end up with a new rimfire in .22lr. Collection hasn't shrunk it's easier to manage ammo.

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April 9, 2012, 09:20 AM
I think we're missing the most important point of this thread.

MIgunguy, whatcha got for sale?

April 9, 2012, 02:58 PM
...and not out of necessity? Along of the lines of "less is more" and "keep the best, sell the rest" I'm thinking of selling off at least 2/3's of my collection. Anyone here do the same and care to share their thoughts? Any regrets?

If you're going to offload some now is the time to do it.

I did decide to sell a 9mm recently. Unfortunately the shop had an unissued Polish M44 MoNag for about what I was gonna get for the pistol, soooo.... :(

April 9, 2012, 03:17 PM
Nope still young and stupid. Ill help yall clean up yalls collections tho

April 9, 2012, 03:20 PM
About 12 years ago, I downsized everything to nothing, in order to get into scuba diving, which then took up all my free time for the next 10 years. Then I got rid of all my scuba gear, and with the proceeds have been rebuilding my gun inventory again.

First purchase, a new gunsafe, the Liberty Centurion, their smallest.

Next purchase, a Mossberg model 590, no sport plug.

Then a Remington model 700 in .300 RUM for hunting anywhere in North America.

Then a Smith & Wesson model 29 as a backup.

Then a CZ 97B 45ACP as a back up to the shotgun.

Next I will likely get a .22LR revolver and rifle, for small game. The revolver would be for backpack trips, and the rifle for non-backpacking hunting trips.

I cannot imagine needing anything else.

April 9, 2012, 08:03 PM
One thing I have been doing is systematically replacing my right handed rifles with ones in left hand. Life's too short to put up with guns not designed to fit me. Of course that doesn't apply to guns that belonged tomy dad. Those are the only ones I'm absolutely committed to keeping.

April 9, 2012, 08:31 PM
I cannot imagine needing anything else.

Give it time....:evil:

April 9, 2012, 08:50 PM
I did this year too. I discovered I could trade in two guns I no longer wanted for ANY single new shiny cool gun I wanted. Its been exciting!

April 9, 2012, 09:07 PM
in the last year, I sold several guns that I no longer shoot just to get money to get new guns...

But now I'm thinking about selling more guns I don't shoot just to use the money for other hobbies..... its interesting how priorities change as life progresses.....

Carl Levitian
April 10, 2012, 09:23 AM
There was one other factor I had thought of as I sold of guns. If I had to evacuate for sone reason, I'd have needed a spare truck for just the guns. It had got to a ridiculous point. Now I can fit everything in one large duffle bag. No sense having more guns than I ca run with.


April 10, 2012, 11:38 AM
I think it's the circle of life for us collectors, I'm sure one day I'll probably do the same, but for now I'm still growing the collection. :D

April 10, 2012, 11:51 AM
When my uncle told me 20 years ago he was selling off most all of his guns, I should have picked up then that he was ill. Being a gunsmith and cometitor you just don't wake up one day and decide t sell guns that you spent years on. But since then he passed from altzimers, he knew he was at the on set. Anyway with a bad back and the limited mobility, I subconsiouslly more than conciouslly have reduced mine to 5 hand guns and a rifle. I'll stay at this level, as long as I can still get around as well as a normal guy, just more pain.But unless you have kids or grandkids who shoot there isn't much else you can do with them when you can't enjoy them. In my family there are no other shooters, more anti gun people than anything else.Very old,- 90's and the younger ones, step son and step daughter live in states that you can't carry and don't like guns have girls, and would never accept a gun in their house. So I may as well keep the ones I have while I can still use them. My shooting buddies are long gun guys for the most part. they believe a pistol is just a means to get to a rifle.

April 10, 2012, 01:22 PM
About a year and a half ago, I had about a dozen fairly nice WW2 rifles representing the arms of nine different nations. Though I enjoyed building the collection, I eventually did very little with them. One night, I pulled them all out of the gun safe, and I then realized that many of them were becoming rusty while not being used. I knew I'd either have to devote the time to keeping up my collection, or else I'd need to part with it. I have since sold all but three of those rifles, and I don't regret doing so. I've also consolidated a few other areas of my overall collection and have used the proceeds to buy a couple of firearms that I really wanted. I enjoy what I have more now, and I can actually navigate through the gun safe due to the extra space that's there.

Old krow
April 10, 2012, 03:02 PM
...and not out of necessity? Along of the lines of "less is more" and "keep the best, sell the rest" I'm thinking of selling off at least 2/3's of my collection. Anyone here do the same and care to share their thoughts? Any regrets?

I suppose it would depend on how big the collection was. 2/3rds of 9 isn't a lot of guns. 2/3rds or 300 is a lot of guns.

It doesn't bother me to do it with handguns. I've already sold some and I will probably sell even more. I don't own any hand guns with any sentimental attachments, so I've never really sold one that I regretted. There's a number that I have in my head that I feel pretty comfortable with and that's about where I'll try and get to. So far it hasn't bothered me any and I've been selling and rearranging for a couple years now.

April 10, 2012, 03:08 PM
I did in the late 80's. Big mistake. Very costly and I'll never get close to what I had even if I live another 25 yrs (which also isn't likely).

April 10, 2012, 03:20 PM
My collection has out grown my house so, I'm adding on. :)
I do downsize from time to time by giving something away.
I don't shoot most of the guns I have, but they don't cost me anything to keep them.
Here is a simple rule to follow when it comes to selling guns. Never sell guns when you need money. You will almost always take a lost.
When I get older I will be giving most of my collection to my kids and grand kids. I will give them the guns that they have interst in. The ones they don't care for I will sell or give to friends.

Ky Larry
April 10, 2012, 05:10 PM
A few years ago, I downsized my collection. I had a lot of guns that didn't get shot much, and several I had never shot. I got rid of a new Weatherby 7mm Mag, a S.I.G; a Remington 20ga Model-870, and about a dozen others. I don't hunt anymore so I didn't need 6 deer type rifles or 4 shotguns. I had 3 varmint rifles in .223. I don't shoot .40 S&W much so I didn't need 3 pistols in that caliber. I replaced them with fewer guns that I shoot a lot and with a Colt Python I'd wanted for 30 years. Quality, not quantity.

Nicky Santoro
April 10, 2012, 05:45 PM
anyone here downsize their collection out of choice?

Yup. The old lady bitched, and bitched, and bitched, and bitched until I sold off most of my collection rather than take a drastic action. I'm down to 2 handguns, a skeet gun and a deer rifle. She knows that it will be the end of the marriage before any more guns go so things are quiet now. I also promised her a stark vision of the dark side of my nature. She's seen that demonstrated on others and doesn't seem up for it for herself.

April 10, 2012, 06:39 PM
I used to work part time in a gun shop. I saw numerous kids that had inherited guns bring the in, plop them on the counter, and take whatever they could get.

I have every confidence that grandpa wanted them to go to someone in the family. To them, it was just a chunk of wood and steel they could use to get money to buy video games or pay off the credit card.

I used to work part time in a gun shop. I saw numerous kids that had inherited guns bring the in, plop them on the counter, and take whatever they could get.

So, at 61 YO, unless it's something I know they're gonna want/use, if I don't use it, it's going away to someone that will use it.

April 10, 2012, 06:58 PM
When I got my Texas CHL, I was 46. I amassed quite a collection of full and medium sized handguns, and carried them all.

Now, I'm approaching 62. The plethora of subcompact handguns in major calibers that has come out in recent years has me carrying them more and more, and my full-sized handguns in the same calibers are spending more and more time in the safe.

Now something as simple as the X-grip magazine adapter, which allows full-sized magazines to fit comfortably in the subcompact versions, has just about dotted the I, and crossed the T. I'm seriously thinking about getting rid of full-sized handguns of several makes and calibers. Kinda sad to me, but just makes sense. I won't get rid of them all, but can see about 5 full-sized 9mm, .40, .45, and .357 magnum handguns I previously cherished headed for other owners.

The subcompacts just carry easier, shoot as good for me at reasonable combat distances, and can have the same magazine capacity. A little velocity loss is about all the detriment to my plan.

I WILL miss them, and will probably second guess myself many times after I do this. Just 5 more entries into that Excel spreadsheet I maintain called "Firearms I used to own". Will take it from 66 entries to 71.

April 10, 2012, 07:08 PM
No sense having more guns than I can run with.

Tactical wheelbarrow!

April 10, 2012, 07:23 PM
yes--i've downsized and upgraded. i would rather have 1 superfine piece that i use and baby vs. 3 so so's.:D

April 10, 2012, 07:29 PM
Well done everyone...

This thread, and this thread alone has made be rethink keeping my Mosin Nagants. There are so many better guns to own -- having two cheap ones (I own two) that I really don't enjoy to shoot is not a good enough reason to keep them. Perhaps there is a higher grade Mauser I could get instead.

So thank you....,and darn you all at the same time. :cuss:

Ragnar Danneskjold
April 11, 2012, 05:07 PM
I'm in the process of doing so right now. I want my collection to reflect my needs, and I am a big proponent of standardization. Mostly 1 gun for 1 job. 1 precision rifle, 1 full size 9mm, 1 pocket gun, etc.

I plan on selling my Millennium Pro when the S&W M&P Shield comes out. I am also going to sell my LCP and get the S&W Bodyguard. Add that to my M&P9 full size and Compact that I already have. Add the M&P .22lr pistol for practice when I get the funds. Already got the M&P-15 22 for cheap AR practice.

But the point being that while I am adding guns like the Bodyguard and Shield, I will also be selling guns like the MilPro and LCP. I'd rather have the cash and no sense in my mind in owning a gun I'm not going to use, and no sense in using a gun when I have something that is IMO better. Hence the sales.

April 11, 2012, 10:05 PM
...and not out of necessity? Along of the lines of "less is more" and "keep the best, sell the rest" I'm thinking of selling off at least 2/3's of my collection. Anyone here do the same and care to share their thoughts? Any regrets?
Nope--I have more than "some" would say is necessary (that is so subjective though as to not be empirical in any sense of the word) but I cannot bring myself to jettison off anything quite yet. If I really needed to free up some funds, however, I would not hesitate to consider as such is life, in particular, in our current precarious environment (but it would really have to be an "absolute" mandatory-like justification as I worked my tail off over the past 25yrs. building my collection and really enjoy).


April 11, 2012, 10:19 PM
If the money you get from the guns you sell goes back into new and possibly better guns then you didn't lose anything. Your hard work still went to your passion. On the other hand, if you sold guns to pay credit card bills.... well, I could never do that. That money is lost forever. Housing, education and other guns is ok. I can justify that. If you use it towards another hobby/passion I can see that too. At least you have something tangible that you can possibly sell when you tire of it and get guns again...

April 11, 2012, 11:12 PM
If the money you get from the guns you sell goes back into new and possibly better guns then you didn't lose anything. Your hard work still went to your passion. On the other hand, if you sold guns to pay credit card bills.... well, I could never do that. That money is lost forever. Housing, education and other guns is ok. I can justify that. If you use it towards another hobby/passion I can see that too. At least you have something tangible that you can possibly sell when you tire of it and get guns again...
Well said.

April 12, 2012, 12:06 AM
I sold a Glock G30 and a Glock G26. I bought a Glock G23, a 40 S&W. I also bought an LWD 40-9 conversion barrel as well as an LWD 357 Sig (G32) barrel. The two guns I sold brought in $1000. I spent $725 on this rig including tax and Mep night sights via the GSSF program. Sold two guns. Shoot three calibers now for less cash. I love Glocks.

April 12, 2012, 01:33 AM
I bit the bullet and downsized on my last move. I didn't sell them off, I just left 20 of them with my brother. I kept the best 12 with me. Funny thing is he started to shoot occassionally with my old beaters. Which is great as far as I am concerned.
He bought his Colt .45 Gold Cup, and is thinking of adding an M4 after going to town with my WASR. I tried to explain the 2 are not even close to the same, but he is on a mission.
Who knows maybe one day soon I will take the kids with me to the range so I can pass on a couple of .22s and make some new shooters. ;)

April 12, 2012, 09:01 AM
If the money you get from the guns you sell goes back into new and possibly better guns then you didn't lose anything.

On the other hand, if you sold guns to pay credit card bills.... well, I could never do that. That money is lost forever.

Buying more guns instead of paying off your obligated debt? How is that money lost if you used it to honor your word and pay your bills?

If you owe money to someone, I suggest you pay them first before buying more anything. That's the high road.

April 12, 2012, 07:20 PM
I don't recall writing of not paying off the credit card debt. Can you show me where I said that? By your high raod, we can't buy any guns if we have a mortgage or have a car payment or if we have student loans. I guess you live on a higher road than I do. Congrats for being the perfect man.

April 12, 2012, 09:01 PM
I don't recall writing of not paying off the credit card debt. Can you show me where I said that?

Sure can, it's easy since I already quoted you writing it once.

if you sold guns to pay credit card bills.... well, I could never do that. That money is lost forever.

That money is lost forever how and why? Selling a gun to pay a debt is indictative that you don't have other available funds to honor your debt.

Yes, if I had debt I needed to pay and had no other option, I'd sell a gun to pay it and I wouldn't consider honoring my debt to be "losing money".

I love you specious claim that I somewhere somehow stated that you can't buy firearms if you have debt. lol

April 12, 2012, 09:11 PM
I love you specious claim that I somewhere somehow stated that you can't buy firearms if you have debt.


If you owe money to someone, I suggest you pay them first before buying more anything. That's the high road.


....and had no other option

Your words, not mine. You added something to my words and then commented on your addition. Your High Road is filled with pot holes.

April 12, 2012, 09:36 PM
The way I look at firearms today more so than ever is that they are a very viable and, perhaps, recommended $investment$ vehicle. I have absolutely and categorically no faith whatsoever in WallStreet--dollar is losing value by the day and the traditional investment/retirement philosophy and culture our parents experienced is gone IMO for the average person not privy to insider trading and the like. If given the choice, would you prefer $2K invested in weapons (wisely chosen of course) or $2K invested in stocks or mutual funds? The answer is easy for me when I look at the appraised value of my gun collection as opposed to my 401K over the past five years. That leaves GOLD of which I would buy lots of if I had more (liquid) available funds--I don't so that leaves me with my gun collection which though modest in nature is nothing to snear at (maybe it is compared to some of you guys;)). Moreover, we are continuing to see from my perspective stable to rising gun prices (both used and new alike). Consequently, I will sit on my stuff indefinitely (actually I have added some new toys of late) while they appreciate in value in the hopes that I will not have to unload any while still resting assured that if need be I can free up funds immediately.


April 12, 2012, 10:32 PM
Yep. I've done it several times on a fairly large scale and now do it on an ongoing basis with several guidelines:
1. If I don't carry it or shoot it (at least somewhat) regularly, I sell it.
2. If I want a new one, I generally sell something to fund it.
3. Quality > quantity. I have been known to sell two or three in order to buy one.

The result of this is a modest "collection"; not really worthy of the name. But I learned a lesson from a wise man once, and am trying to live it:
"Happiness is not having what you want, but wanting what you have".
It is an eternal struggle for me, as there is always something new that I want. :)

But I am learning that if I live by the three rules above, I can maintain an equilibrium...and be happy with it.

April 12, 2012, 11:22 PM
3. Quality > quantity. I have been known to sell two or three in order to buy one.

I did that back in 1999 trading in 3 $200. shotguns for 1 $600. shotgun ;)

April 12, 2012, 11:24 PM
I have sold and traded many guns in the last 15 years. The bad ones, I was glad to get rid of but several of the others, I do regret and hate myself for selling them, so now I am very reluctant to do so. I used to compete in SASS Competition but no longer am I a member so I sold one of my 3rd generation SA Colts but still have my Pride and Joy Second Generation SA Colt 45 with the 7 1/2" Barrel. I always think of selling it but when I take It out of the Original Colt Stage Coach Box, I break into a sweat and I change my mind. I hate to sell anything now because I know I will miss them later.

April 13, 2012, 02:12 AM
I have only ever not regretted selling 3 of the 24 guns I have sold. I hope to never make those 21 mistakes again.

April 13, 2012, 09:01 AM

Really, if you can't afford to pay your monthy credit card bill, sell a gun and pay it.

I have no trouble keeping my bills paid, so I'm not selling any firearms.

April 13, 2012, 03:29 PM
Agreed. I got tired of being told by RH'ers (and LH'ers that have been shooting for decades) that I shouldn't need or want a LH gun. So I have focused my buying on LH'ers, ambi's, or R/L configurable for the bulk of the guns I own. It's pretty limiting so it hardly qualifies as a collection. But I'm happy with it.
My wife tends to want a version of the guns I have so I often by the 'R', when I buy the 'L'.
Unfortunately, none of my kids are LH'ers so when it comes time to hand them down, I am not sure where they'll end up. I suspect they'll do the honorable thing and just keep them though. But I'll never find out. :)
By the way, this is a great thread. Please keep it going.

One thing I have been doing is systematically replacing my right handed rifles with ones in left hand. Life's too short to put up with guns not designed to fit me. Of course that doesn't apply to guns that belonged tomy dad. Those are the only ones I'm absolutely committed to keeping.

April 13, 2012, 05:53 PM
I've done a little thinning by giving my Ruger .44 mag to one nephew and .280 Rem/ Ruger 77 to another nephew. Now have a collection of guns that fit specific purposes and nice ones at that. I do have one failing: I have four 1911s. I mean come on! I love the damn things! But even they are specialized: 1 for SWC Bullseye, 1 for HB EIC matches, 1 for combat/bowling pin shoots, and the last/latest one is really funky. It's a collection of parts I've acquired over the years... Ithaca frame, Brazillian military slide, WWII barrel, etc. A real "mutt" but I love that pistol! Anyway, NO regrets with my recent 'thinning.' I do regret having to sell an original Win97 riot gun about 30 years ago because I needed the $$, even if I did get 3x the money out of it.

April 13, 2012, 08:05 PM
Over the past several years I have been selling off a lot of guns that I haven't used for a while. Also getting rid of a lot of other stuff in a general clearing out program.

April 13, 2012, 08:48 PM
For those who have sold some of your guns of late, is there a recommended method in terms of private face to face sale vs. say a gun auction site?


April 15, 2012, 11:49 PM
I decided to take this thread to heart and gave my collection a good hard look and decided to take several guns I just didn't really care about to the gunshow today.

I sold a chinese sks, a gsg p5, a walther p22 target, and an intertec ab10. I made $1300 while only having $950 in the firearms I sold.

Then I bought a Cimarron Arms/ Uberti Thunderer, nickle plated, in .44 special for $500 out the door.

It felt good to clear out some dust gathering clutter from the collection and to add a really nice pistol with new money still in my pocket when I left the show!

(only glitch in my plan, I thought I was going to reduce the number of calibers I had by one, but instead I added one)

April 17, 2012, 10:45 AM
I've gone from a high of 120 down to about 60+, but it's taken years. A lot of my high end stuff was sold when I had two college tuitions to pay at the same time, and a lot since then have gone to my sons as they matured, and now even to my grandsons as they grow. I'm still accumulating, but at a different level, and buying both what I couldn't afford to before, or some classics that've I've always wanted. I'll eventually (maybe) get down to what I will actually use and enjoy - but then maybe not...

April 17, 2012, 12:25 PM
Yea, I'd cut mine down by at least half. I've sold off a bunch of mundane ones, and replaced them with more upscale ones, but even at that I've realized that I'm not going to shoot them. I'm debating selling off even more of them right now.

So far I've never regreated any. I can always buy more if I want to.

April 17, 2012, 12:26 PM
I am in the process of doing this as well, other than family guns that have been passed down, my safe is getting a lot lighter. I am consolidating down to just a handful of calibers and stocking up on ammo for them and training to be as effective with them as possible.

April 18, 2012, 03:03 PM
Yes I'm thinking about getting rid of some of my guns due to arthritis. The handguns will be the first to go, the larger calibers will be the first to go, can't stand the recoil anymore. rimfires and shotguns will be the last. My son will get first pick then the rest will get sent to a new proud owner. I'll keep most of the rifles for now until I can no longer hunt then they to will go on the block.

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