What are they worth?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by CANNONMAN, May 16, 2019.

  1. alfsauve

    alfsauve Member

    Jan 30, 2008
    N. GA
    Scanned through most of the posts: May have missed something, so forget duplicate thoughts.

    1) Most auction houses (RIA) make the buyer pay the fee, not the seller.

    Don't know where you're located, so:

    2) You might have to be careful that everything is still legal. Laws have changed in some states.

    3) If you're going to post it on-line, look for a local bulletin board. That way you can get local buyers and don't have to hassle with shipping. Unless you want the opposite.(In N. GA we have The Outdoors Trader. A few ads out of the region, but most ads and buyers are in-region.)
    Dave DeLaurant likes this.
  2. Skylerbone

    Skylerbone Member

    Feb 5, 2010
    Hawkeye East
    Lots of ways to attack this. If he was well known in the local “community” you might get a very good deal consigning with an LGS, particularly if they sold him a fair number in his collection. I assisted my ex’s grandmother with her late husband’s collection and because I was a fixture at the LGS I got her a very good deal.

    Now a word of caution on purchasing: in grandma’s collection was a Colt King Cobra I coveted highly. She told me in no uncertain terms that because I was family, and because I had put weeks of effort into both this sale (100s of firearms) and into cleaning/painting/wiring/fixing up her house, that anything I wanted was mine without asking.

    Despite knowing she was financially well off, I had the shop give a separate price for the Colt without disclosing why. I then paid her the money directly. A month later I was unexpectedly divorcing her granddaughter and rather than risking my gun rights and freedom, resold it to the LGS and they wrote her a final check. In a word, sucked!

    The last thing you want is for a family member ever having to wonder if a memento was ill gotten, even if it should be kept for the sake of sentiment or a later gift to a child of the deceased.

    I recall the same shop selling a 1911 from the former Sheriff for a pretty penny based on provenance. He was known as a shooter, second best in the area behind some fella by the name of Les Baer.
    Dave DeLaurant likes this.
  3. dcloco

    dcloco Member

    Jan 31, 2006
    Local gun club meeting would be a SUPERB place to advertise with a list.

    Ask multiple FFL dealers to attend a 2 hour time slot to view the collection and place a written silent bid on the items. They may visit the display twice.
  4. kimberkid

    kimberkid Member

    Feb 5, 2010
    There is a gal on the GunBroker Fourms, goes bu Locust Fork ... She's a dealer and has been listing and selling collections on the GunBroker (same name) site for over a decade ... I've bought a couple things from her and if she's still doing it when my time comes to thin out the hurd I may give her a call if I can't do it myself ... Her father was a dealer and I think her daughter helps her with pictures and research for spec's/verbiage if she's anything like Kacey, maybe she will take over one day
  5. mag1911

    mag1911 Member

    Apr 18, 2010
    The big auction houses are only interested in high end/collectible items. I've never gone this route but friends have and the total fees were enormous.
    On-line auctions usually means you're going to get some of them back during the inspection period from buyers remorse, etc. Hopefully they come back in the same condition you sent them and you'll likely have additional fees.
    Consignment sales usually move only part of a normal collection and you have to do transfers to get the rest back or wholesale them to the consignment shop, if they'll take them.
    Local dealers only offer half to two thirds what they think they can get for them.
    Getting tables at gunshows usually means a bunch of three or four day weekends spending money on tables, motels, gas, meals, etc.

    Depending on how many, what you have and where you live a local, very well advertised auction might get rid of them the fastest for the most money. You need an auctioneer with a good reputation and good advertising so you don't run out of buyers before you run out of guns. I've seen that happen. If I had like 30-50 guns to sell I'd put reserves on the best half and let the rest go for whatever they bring.
  6. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    Jan 3, 2003
    0 hrs east of TN

    Depressingly, unless the collection is large and exceptional it won't bring enough for that for very long. I've helped with this sort of thing and at best with a lot of effort on my part most widows end up with about 60% of the value of the pieces.

    Join Gunbroker and search the completed auctions for what actually was realized to get an idea of the range of values for an individual firearm. If he collected antiques there will be a lot of details you'll miss if you aren't knowledgeable on the details of each firearm.

    There are so many issues already pointed out. Condition, location, boxes, how rare (but not too rare), how widely you advertise... If the collection is large and special you would probably be best served with RIA or one of the large auction companies that will photograph and advertise the collection for auction.
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