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Rye Miles #13621

Gun show musings

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Other gun show musings...

 

Last year I was at a gun show here in Canby OR. I was scouring the very few tables that had revolvers looking for Smith & Wessons. I saw a S&W model 10 with a 6" barrel that looked like it had been purposely abused. It was in sad shape. I picked it up to look at it anyway and the price tag the guy had on it said $737. I remember because I thought of the airplane...anyway the guy says "Now there's a rare one. That gun was once the gun carried by law enforcement all over the nation. They are very rare these days". I was amused and a bit miffed that this schyster was trying to pawn this hunk of junk off on some unsuspecting gun buyer.

I told him that it looked like it had been used by every law enforcement officer in the nation and then I added that it also looked like they each must have had a hand in banging it up. He went on to tell me that I didn't realize what a "find" that was. I laughed at him and told him it might be worth $200 at the very most then I decided to irk him a bit and took my glasses off and looked the gun in my hand and said "Yep, it looks it just might be worth $200 now". He snatched the gun from my hand and I walked away.

 

Unfortunately guys like these seem to more the norm now than the exception.

 

At a gun show in Portland last year there was a guy selling "rare" hunting knives. He had several of those Indian made replica hunting knives that have the notches in the back of the blade that are supposed to be for removing percussion caps. He had prices from $75 to $125 on these things. You can buy them on line at Ebay for $13 each. I guess burnishing the word "India" off the base of the blade takes so much time that he had to recoup his time by modifying his price. :wacko:

 

At that same show there was a guy selling those Zustava 9mm pistols for $750.

 

Sheesh...

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The big Wanamacher show in Tulsa is interesting. Wanamacher is actually an Indian word that means "Watch thousands of white men walk shoulder to shoulder and belly to butt" !!

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The big Wanamacher show in Tulsa is interesting. Wanamacher is actually an Indian word that means "Watch thousands of white men walk shoulder to shoulder and belly to butt" !!

Now that's funny right there :D:lol:

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I was at a gun show yesterday and spent some money. Gun shows are no different than gun stores and for that matter the SASS wire there are some knowledgeable people and some that would like to impress you with what they have to say. The best medicine is to chose whom you listen to unless you just want to have some fun and lead them on. I rarely buy anything at the shows but looking is often fun for me. Yesterday I purchased a Smith hand ejector in what is known as a 1917 in 45 acp this is a interesting gun and is marked as a 1937 Brazilian contract gun which are not rare but not plentiful either. The U.S. Army contract guns ended with serial number 169959. This specimen serial is 167*** which places it as being made in 1918/1919 but while it sits within the Army serial numbers it has no Army or Brazilian proofs. None of this is particularly unusual both Smith and Colt have a number of guns that fall out of the serial number ranges but interesting to me anyway. It has been refinished and the bore is nice so I'll shoot it and generally enjoy a classic. Oh ya, paid $475 for it you can buy it on gun broker for $600 to $1400 isn't life strange sometimes? Also bought two military ammo cans $9 they want $17 at the gun store.

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Coworker buys imported reproduction junk. Ties on a feather or two then resells at trade shows. The amount of the junk he had delivered at work, it be safe to assume he parted a lot of Fools from their money.

 

Gun Shows are like neighborhood Garage sales. A bunch of glassware and clothing. Rarely a worthwhile item at a reasonable price, and if there one its bought by the person in front of me.

Edited by Matthew Duncan
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I'm always taken by the number of Heritage Rough Rider 22s at gun shows and every gunshop. They are generally marked up 200% or more. A place 20 miles from here sales them on GB for $120. They are in a big machine shed out in cornfield country and have a small showroom.

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I was at a gun show yesterday and spent some money. Gun shows are no different than gun stores and for that matter the SASS wire there are some knowledgeable people and some that would like to impress you with what they have to say. The best medicine is to chose whom you listen to unless you just want to have some fun and lead them on. I rarely buy anything at the shows but looking is often fun for me. Yesterday I purchased a Smith hand ejector in what is known as a 1917 in 45 acp this is a interesting gun and is marked as a 1937 Brazilian contract gun which are not rare but not plentiful either. The U.S. Army contract guns ended with serial number 169959. This specimen serial is 167*** which places it as being made in 1918/1919 but while it sits within the Army serial numbers it has no Army or Brazilian proofs. None of this is particularly unusual both Smith and Colt have a number of guns that fall out of the serial number ranges but interesting to me anyway. It has been refinished and the bore is nice so I'll shoot it and generally enjoy a classic. Oh ya, paid $475 for it you can buy it on gun broker for $600 to $1400 isn't life strange sometimes? Also bought two military ammo cans $9 they want $17 at the gun store.

REB, you might want to make sure it wasn't converted to .45 Colt.

Edited by Birdgun Quail, SASS #63663

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I was at a gun show yesterday and spent some money. Gun shows are no different than gun stores and for that matter the SASS wire there are some knowledgeable people and some that would like to impress you with what they have to say. The best medicine is to chose whom you listen to unless you just want to have some fun and lead them on. I rarely buy anything at the shows but looking is often fun for me. Yesterday I purchased a Smith hand ejector in what is known as a 1917 in 45 acp this is a interesting gun and is marked as a 1937 Brazilian contract gun which are not rare but not plentiful either. The U.S. Army contract guns ended with serial number 169959. This specimen serial is 167*** which places it as being made in 1918/1919 but while it sits within the Army serial numbers it has no Army or Brazilian proofs. None of this is particularly unusual both Smith and Colt have a number of guns that fall out of the serial number ranges but interesting to me anyway. It has been refinished and the bore is nice so I'll shoot it and generally enjoy a classic. Oh ya, paid $475 for it you can buy it on gun broker for $600 to $1400 isn't life strange sometimes? Also bought two military ammo cans $9 they want $17 at the gun store.

C45SinSW1917_zps85ddc11f.jpg

 

 

I bought 3 for $300 many years ago when they first showed up on the market. Sold the other two. This one in on my bedstand.

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Gun shows around here (central Virginia) are mostly tactical guns and gear. Some reloading supplies, but all at high prices. I did pick up a Ruger LC9s at a very good price one time. I only go once every couple years, have too much other stuff going on.

 

The last gun show here in Fredericksburg was mostly black guns, black gun accessories and other black gun related gear. The shows in Richmond generally have a better selection of non-black gun stuff. And I won't waste time going to another show at Meadow Event Park.

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The best gun buy I ever got at a gun show was a pretty much brand new Win. 94AE Carbine in 30-30 for $200.The guy put 3 rounds through it and he said it kicked too much. Man that thing is a shooter. I still have it. Great little carbine. It's my truck gun.

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Thanks Bird Dog its a 45 acp first thing checked was the barrel second the cylinder. As its already been refinished a reblue some engraving and elephant or walrus ivory grips might just be in store for it.

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One of my CAS pards bought a pair of NEB Ruger SS 32s at a gun show recently at a very attractive price.

 

Last year I bought a pair of old but unfired Remington 58s at a gunshow at a really low price. I sold them a week later for more than twice what I paid (but still a bargain price) to the first person that looked at them.

 

You never know.

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Last gunshow I went to was the Crossroads/Small Arms in Dec. Me and my buddy got a table, filled it to the brim...twice and sold every gun we brought, LOL. Stuff like a Snider in .577 for $150 a Mauser 71/84 for $200 ( which like all my stuff was way more than I paid for it ) The wife's S&W Shield for what I had into it. ( No, that's already spent on her new Kimber, LOL. )

 

Yeah, I think we did ok. We usually do. There was a time when we would do a show and sell most of our stuff and have to make a run home during the day for more stuff. There was a time when prices were more reasonable, too. The internet sites are driving prices up. The internet in general is making it tough on brick & mortar stores like the one I work at ( Yeah, SEMI-retired now, LOL ) and gunshows reflect that but there are deals if you look for them.

 

$11,000 for a Ramo1919 done up to look like a 1917 water cooled. What a deal. ( Actually, it really WAS a good deal ! ) Remington 1903A3 in exc condition, $575. Really good deal. S&W model 10 heavy barrel, nice, $700. Not a deal. Takeoff M4 uppers, 14.5" with bolt carriers in very well worn/desert pickup condition $500....definitely NOT a deal when I can get a brand new upper in pretty much any configuration for way less than that. 22 magnum in cci, rem, nice stock for $18/bx of 50. Powder primers, primers for $26/1000 My store price is $37 and I think Cabela's is $32. There were lots of collectibles; more than I had time for and that was a three day show. I did pick up a real nice vintage holster made by Texas lawman/detective Oliver Ball. No, gun shows aren't what they used to be but there's still deals and fun to be had !

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Dubious Don,

I know it's tough on "brick and mortar" stores and legit dealers and sellers. Trouble is there are so many more unscrupulous people these days at gun shows, it seems. It seems to me that there always have been since the very first show I attended back when I was in the Navy back in '81. BUT there were also lots of fine people doing a fair trade. Over the years it seems the "fine people" have become fewer and fewer. To be fair though we can only judge what we see at the shows that we attend where we live. I don't know about anyone else but I the farthest that I think I have ever traveled for a gun show was probably 60 miles when I lived in Southern California. Now, about once a year I will attend the Portland show which is about 35 miles but I only go if my son-in-law is in town visiting. I hit the Canby OR show 3 or 4 times a year but it's a small show.

 

Like many have said here, most shows are all about "Tactical" or Tacti-Cool stuff, which I no longer have any interest in, hence one of my signature lines.

 

Regards,

Pat Riot

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There is one promoter in the ares that has pretty much the same vendors at every show. Massive amounts of tacticool and conceal carry and black plastic. 1/3 the tables are knives or other stuff. I try to hit small shows as they tend to have more old guns that I'm interested in.

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This was about 20 years ago. I had spent my money on something I don't even remember. Towards the end of the day, I ran into an old timer (not a dealer with a table) trying to sell an "old rifle." I thought I recognized the gun and asked to look at it. Sure enough, it was labeled "Volcanic Arms." When asked what he wanted for it, he replied, "I don't exactly know what it is, but any old gun like this should be worth at least $100."

 

I was flabbergasted, but contained myself. In those days, ATMs weren't plentiful like they are now. I told him I'd go to the nearest gas station and come back with $100, but he wouldn't let me; it was time to go home. I asked for his address and told him I'd show up with the money, but he lost interest in the deal. I never got that rifle.

 

If only I had $100 in my pocket!

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There are still a few good shows around in Oklahoma and north Texas. I've gotten some of my best finds at the smaller shows but find Wanamacher's in Tulsa best. Not because it's bigger....you just don't see all the air soft crap, etc and its as much a museum as a show. Pulps right though cause if you go on Saturday be prepared to do lots of squeeze by, ducking, dodging, and shifty sidesteps cause it do get crowded.

 

Big Town in Mesquite has a pretty good one. Don't go to Market Hall in Dallas much because of the parking. The Ft. Worth show is a little far for me. The Grand American shows in OKC and Tulsa are generally pretty good.

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I use to do shows when I had a FFL in Illinois. When I first started, the were 4 shows around the Chicago area and you could always find different things there. The shows tapered off until there was only 2 shows and poorly attended and that was when I quit going to them. Right before I left Illinois, I attend the 2 shows and they have grown back into decent shows but not the huge shows they use to be.

 

Since I got to Alabama, I have attended 3 shows. This first on in Birmingham I found was a big show that happens a couple times a year and they have a smaller show between the big shows. I attended a small show 2 weekends ago in Huntsville and sold one gun and traded a different gun and did ok. I got the 325 round bricks of 22lr there for $20/brick including tax and a card from the guy with his store location and he said he always had them in stock for that price.

 

I went to the smaller show in Birmingham this weekend and it was empty on Saturday due to the 1/4 inch of show/ice on the ground. Most of the tables were full and mostly black guns. I saw a few cowboy guns but not much. I bought Maverick 88 12ga pump shotgun that was well used for $110 and got a good deal on some 30rd mags for my Marlin camp 9 at $15 each so I think it was worth the trip.

 

I like to walk around and look and there was a lot of items that seemed high but I found those 2 deals and a couple ok deals I passed on.

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I had a gun show dealer explain to me in great detail why my search for a Ruger Red Hawk in 41 Mag was an impossibility because no Ruger of any type had ever been made in a 41 caliber.

 

For a pistol that doesn't exist; mine sure shoots nice.

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Buy guns at gun shows? I go for the beef jerky, and aluminum siding vendors.

I got some damn good fudge, some batteries and a Butane mini-torch at the Tucson gun show, Saturday. Oh yeah; and some gun brushes. Always wear my USS ENTERPRISE hat and get to talk with some vets. I still attend. When I spent winters at home, we set up our recruiting table for WOWS, at many of the local shows.

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Around here, the shows are also crowded and the much of the stuff is overpriced junk. But it sells.

The last buy I got was over 25 years ago, on a quite new, wood stocked, scoped.308 Weatherby Vanguard in carbine length. The current owner told me he couldn't get it to shoot, so he bought some other rifle and just wanted out of the Weatherby.

So. after a little look-see, I bought it at a distress sale price he was asking, c/w scope, and took it to the range.

Sure enough, it was all over the place. I took it home, removed the stock and sanded out the high spots touching the barrel.

Took it back to the range and found it shot MOA.

It became my go to deer gun for quite a while, until a buddies sob story about needing a rifle got to me and I sold it to him.

Wish I still had it.

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EXPERT EX is a "has been" SPURT is a "drip under pressure"

 

We set up at our gun shows to show off our stuff and promote cowboy shooting. One year (during BO's 1st term) we were warned that there might be

some FED's coming through. I was manning our table when 2 guys in matching suits and trenchcoats came up. One said " I'm not from this state, can

I buy one of these guns" I told him that we were displaying only- nothing for sale. I laughed as they walked away.

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Around here, the shows are also crowded and the much of the stuff is overpriced junk. But it sells.

The last buy I got was over 25 years ago, on a quite new, wood stocked, scoped.308 Weatherby Vanguard in carbine length. The current owner told me he couldn't get it to shoot, so he bought some other rifle and just wanted out of the Weatherby.

So. after a little look-see, I bought it at a distress sale price he was asking, c/w scope, and took it to the range.

Sure enough, it was all over the place. I took it home, removed the stock and sanded out the high spots touching the barrel.

Took it back to the range and found it shot MOA.

It became my go to deer gun for quite a while, until a buddies sob story about needing a rifle got to me and I sold it to him.

Wish I still had it.

I pounce on those kind of deals like a fox on a field mouse. Most of the guns I buy have some kind of fracture or flaw. Most are easy fixes at almost no cost.

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I was at a gun show a couple years ago and a guy had an Uberti in .357 for a half way decent price, like $350.00 or so, I looked at it and he said "It just like a Colt, after all Uberti makes Colts anyway". I said, "No they used to make the cap and ball pistols for Colt but not the SAA's". This guy just wanted to argue and insist that he was right. I walked away as he was talking and the sad thing is that .357 was a pretty nice peice and I would have bought it if he wasn't such an outspoken, belligerent, know it all!! :angry:

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And RG is "Ruger of Germany".

 

I've also heard Armi San Marco made Colt. Also, more recently, Pietta.

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Some years ago Winchester tried to get into the Cowboy act and made some 94's in 44-40. Suffice to say they didn't cycle well and were a bust. I picked one off the table in Mesquite and remarked that it was made way after WWII. The 'deer in the headlights' look told me that this dealer had been taken but he wouldn't budge off his $1800 dollar price nor agree to the vintage despite being shown in Blue book right there on the table.

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The big Wanamacher show in Tulsa is interesting.

Yup. I went for the first time last year. Picked up a really nice Garand for good price after seeing acres of overpriced ones. Lots of overpriced stuff and some junk, but if you're diligent, there are a handful of deals to be had. And if you need parts and accessories, this is the place to go.

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