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Badlands Beady

Schofield 2000 Collector Question

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This is part brag, but mostly serious question.

 

A year or two ago, I scored a S&W Performance Center 2000 Schofield at a bargain price; it soon became one of my main match guns and I decided it would be neat to have a pair of them. I sold off several guns from the safe and started saving. While shopping and waiting for the right gun to turn up, I began to get ideas about ivory grips for the pair, engraving and inlay (we're probably talking a three- or four-year project). Then, one showed up in Gunbroker that looked promising, at a comparatively moderate price, and I bought it.

 

I just picked the gun up yesterday, and there were a couple of things about it that weren't in the ad. Like, the serial number is GWS0013, for starters. Then, there's the letter from Smith and Wesson, congradulating the original owner for winning the gun at auction, and explaining that this was one of the 1st 125 Schofields made in 2000, all of which were "auction guns." Then, there's the letter of authenticity from the S&W historian with original signature on a raised seal. The extras I already knew about, but didn't think anything of them at the time: heavy-duty lockable wooden display case, and aluminum carrying case with a three-number combination lock for each latch. BTW, the gun is unfired, the carrying cases still had the nylon inserts in them to keep the locks from being accidentally set before their first use, and the display case was still in its carton.

 

So, here's the question: What happens to my "plans" for personalizing the pair? My new Schofield is obviously a collector's item, and a bloody lucky windfall for me, but I wanted a gun I could shoot a lot and dress up. Do I want to turn it into one-half of a matched, but non-sequential, pair?

 

I know I'm going to get opposing opinions, but I'd like to hear everybody's thinking. My own inclination is to go ahead and dress 'em up. Guns are made to be shot, there's no historical value involved, it's my property, and guns are generally a lousy monetary investment, anyway.

 

So, fire away. Pun intended.

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Its your gun, your plan and your money. If that was the plan-- go for it. Keeping it as a collector won't give you as much enjoyment -- will it?

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Howdy

 

Tough decision. I know the majority will say it is your gun and go ahead and do what you want with it.

 

But we are not talking about a run of the mill Uberti here, a 2000 Schofield that was part of the original 125 auctioned off is kind of special.

 

Let me tell you about a somewhat similar situation I am in. Last year I came across an original nickel plated S&W New Model Number Three. This model is similar to a Schofield in that it is built on the Number 3 frame, but it has a few improvements over the Schofield. This one was made in 1882, and then factory refinished in 1965. When it was refinished it was put back to exactly the same condition it was in when it left the factory. It came with a letter of authentication from Roy Jinks, the S&W historian. Having been factory refinished, it is pristine. It looks like it just left the factory. It is so pretty, and pristine that at first I thought I was looking at an Uberti Schofield when I first saw it in the dealer's display case. This is truly a once in a lifetime gun, so I spent more money on it than I have ever spent on another gun in my life. Probably will not ever spend that much again.

 

But I did not buy it to be a safe queen, I bought it to shoot. It has already been to two CAS matches, I hope to take it to another on Sunday.

 

As is typical with this model, it shoots high. So high in fact that I have to hold on the bottom of the targets to make sure I don't go over the top. This could easily be remedied by putting a taller front sight on it, and I know somebody who could do so. It also would benefit from having the hammer spring ground down and lightened a bit.

 

But seeing as this is such a pristine piece, I ain't gonna do anything at all to change it from the condition I got it in. Gonna keep the same front sight, and the same heavy hammer spring. Just gonna remember to hold on the bottom of the targets. I ain't in this game to win any prizes, I am in it to shoot neat old guns. So slicking it up and making it a more competitive gun would be counterproductive for me. That is my take on these things. I am just a steward of my guns, and with the extra special ones like this I want to keep it in as original a condition as possible.

 

Not saying you shouldn't shoot it, but perhaps you should consider keeping it in its original condition.

 

On the other hand, I have seen several original Schofields and New Model Number Threes that Happy Trails did have beautifully engraved. He also converted them to his hammer actuated bolt. But I'm pretty sure he did not do it to pristine guns.

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OK, let me clarify something: I have no plans to do anything to the gun's functioning. I, also, am too slow to worry about anythkng but style points. Rather, I had been thinking about naming the pair (presently leaning toward "Hell" and "Texas"), and having them suitably and identically engraved and inlaid. The ivory grips are a no-brainer, since that's completely reversible, but the engraving and inlay would be permanent.

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Howdy Again

 

If you are asking me, there is a big difference between novelty engraving like you are thinking about, and engraving in a style that would be consistent with the way such a gun would have been engraved when it was new.

 

So my vote is don't do it.

 

Just my vote, what do I know?

 

Let's see what everybody else says. I'm sure they will disagree with me.

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You say you got it for a decent price? I think I would sell it for it's real value to a collector, find another run of the mill gun, and put the profits towards your project.

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It seems to me that you should go ahead and do with it what you wish. Yes, it's a "special" revolver and, maybe, in a hundred years or so, the value may reflect it. Right now, it's a "new" revolver, much as a S&W or Colt built in the 1800's was new then. Whatever embellishments were made to them, may add or detract from their present value but who cares? Someone in the present is getting a bargain or paying up. If you figure you got a good deal and are only looking at the resale value then don't touch it but, if you have a plan stick to it. Who knows, in 2111 someone may advertise them for sale as a pair owned by that famous cowboy shooter Badlands Beady.

 

Tex

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I'd pass on the engraving, while it looks cool it rarely enhances value and usually lowers it. I've got 2 of the 2001 Schofields, one in blue 7" and the other is a 5 1/2" stainless, my pride is a #3 1st edition that was cut to 5 1/2" with real ivory grips I found at a gun show 5 years ago, I shoot it every match. Do what makes you happy.

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Sell the gun to an collecter , or trade it with him for a less pristeen and a bucket of money to boot ....

A friend of mine traded a 1st. gen Colt that he picked-up Cheaper Than (HE) should allowed from a widow, that just wanted the guns out of her house .... He bought the lot for 10,000 dollars, sold the other guns (21) for 12,000 and the Colt he traded for a SAA made in 1909 in 65% condition with 16,000 dollars to boot ....

He should not be allowed to make such deals .... :D:blink::D:blush::P

 

Why do I never come across those deals ???

 

 

Jabez Cowboy

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Right now, it's a "new" revolver, much as a S&W or Colt built in the 1800's was new then.

 

Not really. This is a special issue gun. There were only 125 of these offered in the initial auction with the collector's presentation box and documentation. That puts it in a separate class from a run of the mill S&W or Colt made in the 1800s. On top of that, it is doubtful S&W will ever make the Schofields again. It is not apples and apples.

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If I was pretty sure I'd never need to sell them and pretty sure I realized that I wouldn't get out of them what I put into them(unless you got a real steal), I'd do what I want with them. The engraving (especially novelty engraving) is going to make them hard to sell if you ever need to and this is the type of gun whose value is more than as just a shooter in current condition. I wouldn't let that stop me personally though. I'd probably shorten the barrels while I was at it ;)

 

You could offer the one up in trade, maybe get a less collectible one with some boot $$ to help fund your project...just a thought. Seems like Sixgun Shorty was collecting these, you might contact him....

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Howdy Again

 

Just so we know what we are talking about, here is a not very great photo of a couple of Happy Trails' New Model Number Threes. He sent these out and had them engraved, they did not come that way. They are exquisite.

 

New Model Number Threes

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I'm with the sell(or trade) it off crowd. Get yourself one that you won't mind personalizing. In the long run, will you always be wondering, as you are right now, if you did the right thing?

 

Hate the idea of having a gun I would be hesitent to shoot. But know that some appreciate these things more than I and would rather have something rare and irreplacable be in the hands of some one who can care for and maintain that history while I use my guns for the purpose intended.

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I'm not shy about shooting it; that's what it was designed to do, and the only thing special about it at the moment is the serial number. Now, if it was one of those commemoratives dripping with gold, that would be another matter. Putting on new grips isn't a problem, since the old ones could be put back on in seconds. Permanently altering its appearance, though, with no hope of ever putting it back, well, I agree with Driftwood: If this were #126, no problem.

 

I guess that's the answer. Get the new grips for both guns, shoot the daylights out of them, and just enjoy having something special. And love all the style points I'll be getting.

 

Gee, that wasn't so hard after all.

 

Thanks for the help, pards. I needed to hear thoughts besides my own.

 

 

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Howdy Again

 

Just so we know what we are talking about, here is a not very great photo of a couple of Happy Trails' New Model Number Threes. He sent these out and had them engraved, they did not come that way. They are exquisite.

 

New Model Number Threes

Having seen them up close Yes they are Exquisite!Your number 3 is also Beautiful,in all of it's S&W splendid finish. Wondered how it shot for you because at the time you showed it to Wild Bill and I you hadn't shot it much. Driftwood you have a Keeper their,Beautiful. Adios Sgt. Jake

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Personally, I would shoot it often without any hesitation. If it was just another "generic" Scofield, I'd be willing to do engraving and other such visual customizing.

 

Since it is one of the original 125, I'd leave it in the condition as it came from the factory.

 

If I was REALLY set of doing engraving and such, for THIS gun, I'd take it to Springfield and have the work done at the S&W factory.

 

Just my opinion.

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