Gathering opinions on what to do with this Belguim made Hi-Power...

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Yinzer-Steve, Mar 26, 2022.

  1. Ironicaintit

    Ironicaintit Member

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    I guess it's up to you, but....
    In my mind it'd be like not having sex with your girlfriend so that the next guy can be first.
    does not compute
     
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  2. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    There are no more and never will be. The current FN is NOT the same gun and only bears the name. The Springfield is NOT the same gun, nor is the Girsan. I do collect Hi Powers and an unfired Belgian would stay unfired in my collection, but I have 3 shooters (one of which is my carry).

    If that influences your decision to shoot it or keep it as factory new I'm glad it helped.
     
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  3. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

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    If it doesn't need cleaned, don't clean it. Proof.
    If you want bragging rights, a collector piece, or a sellable goods later, keep it as-is.
    If you want a shooter, sell it and use the money to buy and feed one. If you already have one, that would be a good ammo fund.
     
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  4. lightman

    lightman Member

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    What to do with it? I think you should sell it to me! ;) I've been looking for one.

    A friend has 2 of them, both unfired with the pouch, papers and everything. One has adjustable sights and one has the tangent sights.
     
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  5. Electricmo

    Electricmo Member

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    No box and papers. What makes you think that’s shipping grease? Unshot? Prove it. Shooting this gun will do nothing to its value. Sounds to me like you want a safe queen. I think you could do better.
     
  6. Jimbo80

    Jimbo80 Member

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    I don’t believe there is such a thing as an unfired pistol that was sold retail. Only way to ever know for sure would be to make it yourself. It’s not all that hard to keep a pistol in like new condition and enjoy shooting it.
     
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  7. Jdague12

    Jdague12 Member

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    Is EVERY firearm factory produced test fired and how long has that been the standard? I know I’ve bought handguns where they included the spent casing. Or do just certain companies test fire every firearm?

    Also, all of the responses have been very respectful opinions. Thank you to everyone. It’s been a real pleasure being part of this group
     
  8. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Thanks for your reply. I really thought I'd hear more like this. Especially since they are no more.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2022
  9. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Thanks but I'm not asking for permission here....If I wanted a safe queen, that's where it would be and we wouldn't be having this conversation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2022
  10. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    I thought this as well. However, even if it was just one proof load, wouldn't there be some evidence of it? Some partially burned powder, some sort of marks left by it?
     
  11. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    LOL...it's not for sale but I'd entertain offers :rofl:
     
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  12. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Good point!
     
  13. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    In my collecting experience of 25+ years, unfired does bring a premium. So does original box. This is in MY experience though.
     
  14. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Spoken like a true Pittsburgher!! Love it!
     
  15. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Some good points here! I also collect coins (much to my wife's delight :rofl:) and I definitely find circulated coins a lot more interesting than pristine, uncirculated ones. It leaves to your imagination whom may have had it in their possession at some point in time. The uncirculated ones bring a much higher premium but aren't as interesting.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2022
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  16. ontarget

    ontarget Member

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    I have many "safe queens", but only because I don't have time to shoot all of them. LOL.
    I do have an unfired Smith &Wesson model 60 no dash that came with box , docs, and all of the goodies. Not going to say I will never fire it, but will say I'm in no hurry to fire it.
     
  17. Jimbo80

    Jimbo80 Member

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    [QUOTE="Yinzer-Steve,]However, even if it was just one proof load, wouldn't there be some evidence of it? Some partially burned powder, some sort of marks left by it?[/QUOTE]

    If it's properly disassembled and cleaned you shouldn't see anything other than the marks made when the gun was built. ALL guns are cycled many times during the manufacturing process and lord knows how many times on a showroom floor. There will always be marks of some kind on any gun you buy.

    I might consider keeping a firearm unfired if it was purchased to sell it right away. Guns that I collect are not for sale anyway so I see no reason not to enjoy them for all they have to offer. Hi Powers are keepers and any profit I made were I to sell it wouldn't make up for the fun of shooting it.
     
  18. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    That makes sense however, do manufacturers disassemble and clean firearms after they test fire? Seems to me that it would be time consuming and incur costly labor. But I don't know. Also, I will eventually sell off all my collections (coins and guns) and enjoy the fruits of them in another way (like travel, retirement). Many pieces I have acquired over the years have appreciated greatly making them a nice investment. Can't take'em with me when I die and there is nobody I would leave them to.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2022
  19. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    And, it's a valid question. After all, a machine-tool using factory is going to have plenty of solvents and cleaners and process and personnel to the task.

    Production volume will be a factor, too. Let's say your factory line can crank out 10 per hour, that's 80 in an eight-hour work day. That's a thousand in 13 working days, right at three work-weeks. Or, around 16,000 in a 50 week work-year--that's rather a lot to sell once made.

    The when matters, too. Thirty or forty years' ago, the labor was "cheaper" than the materials and machining.

    The where matters as well. Belgium had a long-entrenched Apprentice system, so they had a surplus of workers "coming up" who would have needed things to do, and cleaning firearms parts or finished firearms would fit that bill.

    I don't have a dog in this hunt. I'm disinclined to pay extra for "unfired"--if understanding why a seller would factor that into their selling price. That's me; others vary.
     
  20. Yinzer-Steve

    Yinzer-Steve Member

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    Okay...very interesting. Thanks for that. So, let's say it was cleaned after test fire. I also do not see any showroom handling marks. Nothing on the magazine, slide, or anywhere else you'd expect to see'em. Also, in my case, the gun wasn't listed as unfired by the auctioneer (but this auctioneer doesn't usually sell guns however this was part of an estate he picked up) and I didn't expect it to be but much to my surprise, after a thorough inspection once in my possession, I could clearly see that it hadn't been fired (at least once it left the factory floor).
     
  21. John_R

    John_R Member

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    I’d shoot it to make sure it functions correctly. Unfired vs. only 13 or 15 rounds through it, you often can’t tell the difference. So if you ever sell it, at least you can tell the buyer it works.
     
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  22. Nature Boy
    • Contributing Member

    Nature Boy Contributing Member

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    I know there’s one thing you should do with it.

    Take some pictures of it and post them on here, like yesterday! ;)
     
  23. Otto

    Otto Member

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    Is your BHP stamped "Assembled in Portugal" ? Is it a Mark II or III? Three dot or adjustable sight?
     
  24. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    I have no safe queens. The 67 Mustang and 57 Belair in my garage are driven regularly.

    Did you buy yourself a gun, or did you make an investment?

    If you got it for a good price and you think you can make good money from it, it's an investment. Safe queen until you sell.

    If you bought it to get another gun, shoot it. Shoot it a bunch. Enjoy it.
     
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  25. WVsig

    WVsig Member

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    I will offer you my "uneducated" opinion since you asked for it.

    First lets start with some facts. If the gun you have has the date code of PT which means it was made in 1986 you have a MKII. The parts were made in Belgium and assembled in Portugal.

    EDIT:
    Did not have enough coffee yet and got my dates wrong. The "Assembled in Portugal" rollmark first appears in 1988. The OPs gun was made in 1986 so it could have a Browning Rollmark and not be marked "Assembled in Portugal." Now that said it does not change the fact that by 1980 at the latest all BHPs were assembled in the plant in Viana, Portugal. Resellers looking to add value will tell you otherwise but it is not true.

    Your gun is not "collectible" in that millions of them in a similar configuration were made. If you are not the original owner with the original docs, box and providence the claim that the gun is unfired is a hollow one because you have no idea. It has no verifiable truth value. "Factory grease" is meaningless. Do you now for a fact what packing grease was used by FN in 1986? I don't and I don't know of anyone who does and could identify it by sight. So you don't really have an unfired gun you and a LNIB or NIB condition gun without a box.

    As to value some people are going to pay more for a BHP with claims like unfired and Belgium made. True collectors of the BHP know how to evaluate these claims. Anyone who has read Anthony Vanderlinden's or R Bake Stevens' books on the subject know which guns are 100% Belgian production which ones might be and which ones are not. All collectors buy on condition and rarity. Your example has condition going for it if it is as you describe. It not rare unless it has a particular finish, sight configuration or engraving from the factory. If this is a standard MKII with standard fixed sights or beer can adjustable sights then it is not "rare" in any sense of the word. IMHO Lots of them wee produced between 1982 and 1987-1988. It is unlikely that a collector does not already have a LNIB example of a gun from this era. Now that does not mean someone won't pay you more for the gun in its current condition vs sowing some wear but how much more is completely subjective and unknown to all of us at this time.

    The BHP was made for a longtime. There are many variants and sub variants of the gun. There are commercial models and contract models. There are frankenguns which are a little of both. There are T series which were made in 1973 almost 4 years after everyone will tell you that the T series production stopped. The are C series made in 1969 overlapping the T series. There are MKII guns with MKIII features. The list goes on and on. It is a rabbit hole of a rabbit hole and FNs horrible record keeping makes is a collectors mecca if you have a unique gun. IMHO this is not a unique gun.

    So if it were me I would shoot it. I shoot all of mine. They range from internal extractor Pre Ts to modern MKIIIs. Some certainly get shot more than others but they all get shot. All of them were most likely shot before I got them. I have never bought one NIB. I am collector/shooter when it comes to BHPs. All that being said right now BHPs are at the height of their pricing. I have seen some sell for more than I ever thought that would. I personally think that guns of the vintage you are describing have peaked. The new clones bring down their value because the modern clones are better out of the box shooters assuming they are not defective. The person looking to get a BHP shooter is going to choose the $700 SA-35 over a $1500 "never been shot" 1986 MKII. That is my $.02 and please forgive me and remember what you paid for it. LOL

    z4FU7DN.jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2022
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