Are you prepared to buy "the Grail Gun" at a gun show?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Rembrandt, Jun 15, 2021.

  1. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Messages:
    4,517
    Location:
    In the Wild Horse Desert of Texas
    I don't really have any grail guns on my list anymore but I carry enough cash to get almost anything that might pop up and interest me.
     
  2. gyp_c2

    gyp_c2 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2004
    Messages:
    1,414
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    It doesn't have to be expensive.
    It just has to be in the right place, right time and has already been mentioned, all the stars have to be aligned with yer' nose fer'
    the one.
    :neener:
    :evil:
     
    horsemen61, NIGHTLORD40K and mcb like this.
  3. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2009
    Messages:
    11,652
    Location:
    DFW (formerly Brazos County), Texas
    Hmm, More like Schrodinger's Grail for me--both existing and non-existing.
    If I don't see it, I may not recognize it.
    But, I've been known to put a stash of "hold out cash" in the safe for taking to a show. At least enough to put down to hold the thing until sorting out the rest of the funds.
     
    Rexster, Demi-human and NIGHTLORD40K like this.
  4. mcb

    mcb Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Messages:
    5,337
    Location:
    North Alabama
    It would seem that we are operating under different definition of "Grail Gun". Grail by definition is, "a thing that is being earnestly pursued or sought after. the object of an extended or difficult quest" Rarity and value at not a requirement for a grail though it is frequently the case. Somethings are super rare or very hard to come by but since only a very few people want them they have very little value.

    My grail gun was an unshaved Webley Mk VI. Certainly not unheard of but at least here in the States fairly rare compared to the number of shaved Mk VI. Despite the relative rarity is was not an excessive expensive revolver since the market for Webley's is also relatively small. So though I spent ~15 years seeking out an unshaved Webley and passed on a fair number of shaved guns and even one or two unshaved guns it was my Grail Gun.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2021
  5. GE-Mini-Gun

    GE-Mini-Gun Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2004
    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    Virginia
    No...my grail gun is my user name. I think there are 3-4 that are transferable. Last time I saw one listed for sale it was $250k and that was 15-20 years ago...if I had to guess they would be north of 400k.
     
  6. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Messages:
    7,883
    Location:
    Virginia
    Good point. That's why I included desirability in my definition as well as rarity.

    Keep in mind that the original Holy Grail was a one-of-a-kind item. In the collector world, one-of-a-kind items are not much sought after. Collectors want items that are part of a series. And the items must have been originally made in enough quantity to have been documented, and to spark interest.

    Speaking of documentation, we shouldn't discount the value of knowledge. Something could be a "Grail Gun" to an expert on a given series, while it passes right over the heads of the other 98% of gun collectors. So we have the related concept of "arbitrage" -- different prices for the same item, in different markets. A group of experts would be one market, while the non-experts would be another market. An example would be yard and estate sales in rural Pennsylvania, circa the 1970's. There were lots of WW1 veterans in rural Pennsylvania, and they were dying off in the 70's and 80's. Their families put their bring-back stuff up for sale, at typical yard sale prices. Knowledgeable WW1 collectors picked up all sorts of WW1 treasures for a song, and resold them for many times what they paid. (Actually here there were three markets: the clueless relatives of the veterans, the WW1 experts, and then the run-of-the-mill general collectors.)
     
  7. Legionnaire
    • Contributing Member

    Legionnaire Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    7,546
    Location:
    Texas
    No grail guns. Targets of opportunity are another matter.
     
  8. Archie

    Archie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    3,145
    Location:
    Hastings, Nebraska - the Heartland!
    Yes.
     
  9. Meeks36

    Meeks36 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2019
    Messages:
    1,286
    Location:
    Georgia
    I’m always disappointed at the shows. Always higher then buying local. And most of the time higher then gunbroker price’s.
     
    Airborne Falcon likes this.
  10. Pelo801

    Pelo801 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Messages:
    357
    Yes I am. The problem is the term "grail" falls under a wide scope ‍♂️
     
  11. Jimbo80

    Jimbo80 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2020
    Messages:
    269
    Location:
    Florida
    My "Grail Gun" is the gun that's currently on the top of my WTB list. I am lucky enough to be able to afford any of the guns on my list but a huge part of the enjoyment I get collecting guns is the hunting and haggling. Anyone can get what they want by overpaying on gun broker but where's the fun in that?
     
    Legionnaire and Demi-human like this.
  12. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2016
    Messages:
    4,565
    Location:
    The Haymarsh, MI (Aka, Paradise.)
    It isn’t the killing, it’s the hunting…;)
    (And killing it for way less than the guy at work did!:D)
     
    Jimbo80 and Howland937 like this.
  13. Bandit67

    Bandit67 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2018
    Messages:
    685
    Location:
    Southeast Michigan
    Sometimes I don't even know what my next "Grail Gun" is......... until I see it.
     
  14. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Messages:
    8,108
    Location:
    SE GA
    I go loaded for bear but I also prepare myself to turn down that grail gun if it won’t fit in my finances at that time….even if I have the money on me.

    I have always thought my cold pragmatism was one of my greatest strengths….

    Last year, I carried in all I would allow myself to afford for a 35 Remington Marlin I was looking for. I found it and talked the seller down over $100 to get it with every last cent I had in my pocket.
     
  15. Airborne Falcon

    Airborne Falcon Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Messages:
    227
    Location:
    Capital City, SC
    Back in the day, twenty years ago and more, grail guns could be had. Less-so post 9/11 and then by 2009 it all got really scarce but ... 80s and 90s there were some serious grail guns to be found out there especially old Colts and the occasional pre 64 Rem 700 ... I scored both at gun shows but those kinda things were not unheard-of.

    I did manage to score a couple of nice old Marlins in the 2000s before the levergun craze caught-on.

    Grail guns are few and far between these days. Who can afford the real grail guns these days?
     
  16. Airborne Falcon

    Airborne Falcon Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Messages:
    227
    Location:
    Capital City, SC
    LoL ... only a fellow physics aficionado gets the kitty joke ... but it's an apropos analogy. Schrödinger probably never imagined the paradox being applied to our holy grail of guns obsessions. Lol
     
  17. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    7,820
    Location:
    Back on Puget Sound
    I do keep a secret stash (a 1" thick bundle) of twenties around every time I'm visiting my LGS or the regional gun shows... ya just never know. Some of us have happened upon our "grail guns" on the exact day we didn't have funds from our double-top secret Swiss bank account, and must still obsess about our loss years later...

    There was this day I happened upon a NIB 6.5" S&W 29-2 in the presentation box at a gun show and had just spent the pitiful amount of funds I'd brought with me on ammo and accessories; another day, found an UNFIRED Clackamas Kimber Classic Royal for a truly unbelievable price and had nothing on me but my driver license and military ID; by the time I got home to retrieve my debit card and swung through a drive-through ATM, of course, it was sold, shop wouldn't hold it with nothing down.

    As my ol' Boy Scout motto notes, "Be Prepared."
     
    Rexster likes this.
  18. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Messages:
    7,883
    Location:
    Virginia
    My experience has been that gun shows are/were remarkably free of pickpockets despite the crowded conditions (pre-COVID). This is somewhat surprising given my experience in overseas travel.

    Still, it might be wise to take extra security precautions. Perhaps leave the cash off-site until you find an actual deal. The dealer would probably give you a few minutes to retrieve the cash, upon payment of a small deposit.
     
  19. Archie

    Archie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    3,145
    Location:
    Hastings, Nebraska - the Heartland!
    (Delivered in a Steven Wright voice.) I have a cat named Schrödinger. I call him. Sometimes he comes, sometimes he doesn't.

    Most participant uses of the term "Grail Gun" are not how I use the term.
    The Holy Grail was the cup used by Jesus at the Last Supper. Doesn't seem like being too special, but the concept was originated - or first written - in the early 13th Century in the legends about King Arthur. The Grail was long searched for by various people through history until sometime later.
    No solid evidence of the existence of such an artifact exists. It is not specifically mentioned in the Bible, except that Jesus did drink from a cup (likely a bowl to our thinking) at the last supper. No one in modern Christianity really believes it exists, save a few who think 'relics' are commonplace. Much like 'Flat Earthers'. I do not think archeologists give much credence to the story.

    By extension, the term has come to mean 'something of great value, to be sought'. For this reason, I have to disagree with 'whatever catches my eye'. In my mind, a "holy grail" has to be something specific. On the other hand, one can have several items at once, of a close enough desire to where one will buy the one of those available. I am only 'grail seeking' firearms for my collection these days. So I want a Romanian Mannlicher, an FN 1910, a Remington model 51 (the old one) and a Walther PPK in .32 ACP; preferably one I can afford (a little less than the going rate for the Walther). There are a few others I would like to have, but these top the list and I keep my eye out for any one or all of them.

    None of this is to overly criticize anyone. Just an observation based on my particularly specific manner of thought.
     
    Rexster likes this.
  20. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2009
    Messages:
    2,146
    Location:
    FL USA
    I have not been to a gun show in about 10 years, the crowd and sloth pace became intolerable. As far as grail gun, the most expensive handgun I own (Ed Brown Special Forces) I got on GB and that is where I'd look for something uncommon. Even if I were inclined to attend a gun show there is no guarantee that what I was looking for would be found.
     
  21. Howland937

    Howland937 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2020
    Messages:
    1,797
    Location:
    South central Ohio
    Sometimes a "grail" gun isn't a highly collectible item, at least in terms of true collectors. Of the several that have topped my list, none would have ever been museum material and most serious collectors would turn their nose up at them.

    I don't currently have a grail quest, but if I did I wouldn't go in search of it without means of acquiring it.
     
    Bandit67 likes this.
  22. Larry Ashcraft

    Larry Ashcraft Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    12,783
    Location:
    Home of Heroes, Pueblo, CO, USA
    I've heard of and handled pre 64 Win. Model 70s and even own one. But what's special about a pre 64 Rem 700? I've never heard of that.
     
    gyp_c2 likes this.
  23. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2006
    Messages:
    3,405
    Location:
    Near Gettysburg, PA
    As I am older I have learned that the "grail gun" does not exist. At least for me anyway. They are all just guns. Some I like VERY MUCH, others I like a lot. That or I wouldn't keep them. I guess I would get pretty excited if I sam a great rifle/shot gun O/U combo. I once passed on a 6.55x55 over a 12 gauge and have regretted that ever since.
     
  24. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Messages:
    8,108
    Location:
    SE GA
    To add to my last post:

    For me a “grail” is much less about the actual item itself and much more oriented with the path to its acquisition. This is the reason I can and will turn down grail guns once I have found them and am in a position to have it.

    A Smith 940 is a grail gun of mine. I could simply get on GB and buy one. I can afford it and it could be mine.

    How so boring though and thoroughly un-grail worthy of a journey that is.

    Shooting a larger buck was a grail type achievement of mine. Without the details, I hunted hard for that buck that year and I got it. The price I paid to get it was the grail. A lesson learned about trophy hunting and doing whatever it takes to attain what could be a thoroughly messed up vision of yourself.

    Consequently, I no longer trophy hunt. I achieved the process and no longer care for the end result. Much like searching for a gun.
     
    gyp_c2, Rexster and Bandit67 like this.
  25. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2007
    Messages:
    7,543
    Location:
    The Mid-South.
    Yes, but——
    Even two years ago at the huge Wannenachers Show in Tulsa nobody on Sat morning (or Sunday) had a true Czechpoint VZ-58. Only the “2008” version.

    Luckily Gunbroker had some in early 2019, a nib CSA VZ, Buy Now (why play games if you Know what you want).

    That’s all I sought, and after driving from Memphis to Tulsa didn’t buy anything, but it was nice to finally attend a huge show for the first and only time.
     
    earlthegoat2 likes this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice