Why Didn't You Buy Those C&R's?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Terry G, Nov 15, 2021.

  1. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

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    I didn't buy them because I ran out of places to put them.:)
     
  2. pharmer

    pharmer Member

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    Back in the 20th century I had an 01 FFL. I was interested in guns that would appeal to a large customer base. Mosins, Mausers, CZ 52's etc waited on buyers. I could sell all the $125 SW Model 10's I could get for $175-$200, today, not in 10-20 years. Business is business. Joe
     
  3. drobs

    drobs Member

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    I thought the $60 Mosins looked like tomato stakes compared to the pretty Mausers and Enfields that were available back in the late 1990's.
    I still don't care for them at $500 to $600 they are going for now.

    I purposely never got a C&R license because it would've been too easy to spend lots and lots of $!!!

    In other cases, I didn't / don't want to bring on a new caliber. I'm happy with the calibers I have. $150 cheap surplus 32 acp pistols just don't blow my skit up anymore. While the gun may be cheap - go shop for the ammo.
     
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  4. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    My brother did the CRFFL thing for some time. He was and is more of a collector.

    Me being a shooter with little income during the 1990s, my problem with milsurps was the fact that most cheap milsurps were worn out or nearly worn out, and finding affordable foreign chambered ammo pre-online-store days was difficult for me. Not counting USSR/Russia surplus ammo, of course.

    Fer example, I bought a 1896 Swedish Mauser for $80 in 1995. But ammo found locally for that gun was up to $40.00/box of 20 back then. It was like going to the local big box store to buy a low priced printer ($) for the house and then buying toner ($$) after the trial sized toner ran empty.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2021
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  5. GunnyUSMC

    GunnyUSMC Member

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    I only had a C&R for six years. I used it a good bit. But for me, buying guns has been more like a game. The real fun was the hunt. I was in and out of pawnshops several times a week. I would even hunt for guns on road-trips.
    I’m one of those guys that bought a crate of Mosins , just for the hell of it.
    I also bought lots of ammo.
     
  6. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    I've had my C&R for over 20 years. My big regret was not buying two or three of what I did buy. I'm mostly a pistol shooter, so the Moisin-Nagants never interested me much. Picked up a K-31, but at the tail end of availability when prices were already rising. Bought a Garand a year for several years. But Makarovs? Cz-82s? Tokarevs? Yup! My big regret is that I didn't get a C&R sooner...and snapped up stuff like Lahti pistols.
     
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  7. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    In my 77 years, many surplus were beat up junk. Throats shot out, bluing that was spray painted on. Mismatched bolts to gun, excessive head space. Jam a matic 30 carbines. Photos of rifles were shown stacked like cord wood. For an extra $20, the distributor would hand pick a nice one for me. NOT.

    The surplus 1911s were a bargain @ $ 45. Had 3 different ones. Accuracy not great, heavy triggers, poor sights. Sold to buy Colt GC @ $ 276 new. . Today, people are crazy paying the CMP price for mismatched guns.

    Before 1968 a bargin basement had a rack full of 1903 Springfields. Nice to hand pick one that looked good. Ended up needing a new surplus barrel installed. New barrel $25. Cost to have gunsmith headspace the short chambered barrel, $5. The good old days.

    Had an FFL & some extra $$ at the time.
     
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  8. goon

    goon Member

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    I actually had few safety concerns with milsurps - maybe I just got lucky. The Mosins I fixed were mostly dried grease gumming things up, dirty / sticky chambers, or cartridge interuptors not working. The ammo was cheap, and I remember them being $50 to $60, often with bayonets and accessories. They worked OK and I really liked the one M39 (I had two). But the 91/30’s… meh. A CZ-452 is probably more fun, less punishment on your body and your ears. And an MN is awkward from the shoulder with the straight bolt handle and pull-twist safety. I had already missed the Enfields by the early 2000’s except for the Indian SMLE’s, but I’d like a No.4 some day. No hurry though.
     
  9. rust collector
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    rust collector Moderator Staff Member

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    It was fun, but few of us wanted to become arms merchants. We wanted to be able to shoot inexpensively. We were fascinated by what the hardware taught us about those who designed and produced the guns. We didn't stop to think about what the cheap guns and ammo were doing to our domestic industry while they bankrolled oligarchs and hostile regimes.
    It's pretty typical to harken back to "the good old days" that look better from a distant vantage point. The runup in price is because we all want what we don't have, and when production or shipping ceases we want it even more. Now we are getting horror stories about not enough stuff for Christmas, and it's rather sad to see that we never seem to catch on until late in the game.
     
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  10. illinoisburt

    illinoisburt Member

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    I guess this depends somewhat on the time frame and location. I thought about getting CR in the 1990s but honestly didn't see any reason to when most of the guns I had an interest in were only marked up maybe $20-30 by local dealers compared to prices available through AIM. Plus many FFLs refused to ship eligible items to CR holders in Cook county. Besides I was not a collector but a shooter so having 10 or 20 of the same guns did not appeal to me and more often then not buying a crate was a crap shoot. It was not much of an issue to find plenty of surplus guns for cheap in a retail shop giving you the opportunity to hand pick what you liked. New sks was $79 vs dealer cost of around $45. 91/30s priced about the same for a long time. It really more about whether the items were in fact in demand by the general public at the time to which the answer was usually 'no', hence the low costs. To me the real value was full power centerfire guns with ammo that was dirt cheap so I could shoot a lot for my money.

    Edit ** to answer the OP question, yes I did buy a bunch of surplus guns over the years along with a fair amount of surplus ammunition. The difference though is I was only buying 1 or 2 copies of a given gun and then shooting it until the ammo dried up. So collectors value really did not and still does not matter to me. I just wanted something fun and robust/reliable with cheap to shoot which happened to be surplus. Rifles which go bang for 10-15 cents and handguns for 6 cents are wonderful.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2021
  11. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    These two quotes right here sum it up perfectly. For me, it was when CMP (actually, it was DCM back then) had M1 Carbines. I thought there would always be carbines for sale, so I didn't take the opportunity.I probably could have pulled it off with careful and disciplined budget planning. Now, I could write a check for one, but I can't justify the price tag.
     
  12. LoonWulf
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    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    wasnt 21 when most of them were deals, was broke or into other hobbies when they were affordable, and now im sol.....dont really hurt too bad tho, I really LIKE learning about them but have no real desire to own most.
     
  13. PzGren

    PzGren Member

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    The only charm of most C&R deals was the equally inexpensive surplus ammo that was available then. Not only did I buy an unissued SKS for $89 but also some 1000 round cases of ammo for under $80 each. 8x57IS was $60 per 1000 in two .50 cal cans delivered. Once the ammo was shot up I sold the SKS's, M38/96, Enfield and M39 and moved on.

    Only three K98ks remained in the family and I don't miss the rest.

    K98k.jpg
     
  14. doubleh

    doubleh Member

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    My answer to the question is very simple. I had no interest in them then and still don't.
     
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  15. Neo-Luddite

    Neo-Luddite Member

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    Not yet! Pretty straightforward process---fill out forms, copy forms to send to local CLEO (in case they need to contact ATF about you, for their files, c.), send check and form to ATF.
     
  16. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    The best kind, Unissued. Seen a Lee-Enfield Rifle 303, looked like new. Shot small groups at 100 yards.
     
  17. Neo-Luddite

    Neo-Luddite Member

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    I've had the C&R for about 15 years and I think I have purchased a whopping 5 total guns with it. The best deal so far; new Yugo SKSs in the cosmo for $150 bucks a pop 14 years ago. Last purchase was a fairly nice CZ 50 pistol in .32 ACP early this year; creepy as heck in DA, but a really cool purpose-designed duty pistol. I just turned 50 myself---I guess that means I'm "C&R Eligible"!!!
     
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  18. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    That's the other thing...50 years old means 1971, soon 1972. Which covers a lot of postwar guns.
     
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  19. jar
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    jar Contributing Member

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    I think we are pretty much in the best time yet when it comes to C&R with the guns from the late 1960s and early 1970s becoming eligible.

    But not seeing that many of them yet.
     
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  20. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    Back when Chinese SKS’s were $69, Russian SKS’s were $99, and you could occasionally find a Russian Mosin M44 for $39, I was fresh out of college, newly married, and broke. By the time things got better financially, the days of $69 SKS’s were pretty much over, unfortunately. :(
     
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  21. illinoisburt

    illinoisburt Member

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    I think one small aspect people overlook here is that when most milsurp were cheap the general shooting public viewed the guns as outdated junk. Many of the same historic weapons in demand now would sit unsold in stores and owners would have other shooters look down their noses at them when these guns were brought out to a range or, heaven forbid, a hunting camp. It was mostly history buffs and us tight-wads who were buying them.
     
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  22. skfullen

    skfullen Member

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    I've bought a few over the years. The wow factor just kind of wore off. Now I'm more into vintage stuff from this country.
    Savage 99's. Winchester 94's. And Colt SAA's.
     
  23. Mosin77

    Mosin77 Member

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    When they were cheap I was young and poor. I could justify $100 on one rifle… barely. I could not afford a $1600 crate of 20 Mosins, even though I did have the inclination to go that route. That would be roughly a month’s wages at the time. And booze wasn’t exactly going to buy itself, either.

    To this date there are milsurps that are about what they were then… a Krag was a thousand bucks in 2006, it’s about a thousand bucks now. On the other hand, the Mosin that was $69 is now $350, and the SKS that was $250 is now $600… most people would say the Krag is a better gun/better buy/better collectible, but from a financial perspective the Mosin crate would have been a better investment. And who could have predicted that suddenly a cheap Commie gun with millions imported, would be selling for more than a pretty good Savage or Ruger deer rifle?
     
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  24. SeanSw

    SeanSw Member

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    I'd love to keep stacking milsurp guns but it's already stupid expensive to feed my vz24 mauser, mosin, and cz52 pistol. At a glance the chepeast 8mm mauser is $600+ a case and 80 years old. No thanks. 7.62x54r is even more expensive but at least it's newly manufactured. For that kind of money I have better guns to use.
     
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  25. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    One thing I've noticed is that the instant the supply of a given milsurp gun runs out, the price doubles.
     
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