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Has anyone here had any luck bidding on Gun Broker?


Pat Riot

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For a very long time I have been a GB lurker. I spent a lot of time watching how the process works and watching guns float along at reasonable prices then an hour or two before the auction ends “Kaboom!” Prices take off due to last hour bidding.  
In the past few weeks I have made attempts at buying various guns, mostly S&W and Ruger revolvers. Every time I force myself to give up once I reach my imaginary limit. 
Apparently I have good taste and a limited bank account. :lol:
One thing I don’t do is bother bidding in the last 15 minutes. That just keeps pushing the clock and usually the price gets stupid high. 
 

It’s interesting, but probably only because I don’t allow myself to get caught up in bidding wars. 
 

Anyone ever have any luck in actually buying an auction gun on that sight?

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I’ve had several good purchases on GB.  I had one very bad one. It was one of those “too good to be true” deals, but it wasn’t much money and it turned into a great project.

 

It’s really a hit or miss situation and patience and holding to your limits is essential.  The auction you’re looking at won’t be the last one of its kind, so if you’re really set on making a smart purchase, keep looking.

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Not recently, matter a fact, not since the plague appeared and people started bidding stupid prices for run of the mill/nothing special guns. I swear that the people don't add up the total cost of the firearm. You know...shipping , CC fee add on, tax and FFL fees at the buyer's end. Depending on the seller's conditions and cost of the firearm, it could add $100 to $150 to the transaction. A $500 gun + $50 shipping + tax (7% in Fl) + 4% CC fees + $25 buyer's FFL fees = $637 total cost. 

 

I still look but rarely bid and if I do...I always get outbid at the end.

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Twice.

My first successful purchase was apparently sheer, unadulterated luck, the other item I bid on was apparently so old and uninteresting that nobody else wanted it.

I've tried since then and too many people have an automatic One-Upmanship installed: anybody makes a bid, their 'bot automatically put in a bid for five dollars more than I just did.

Second time that happened, and I found out how it worked, I said to hell with it and have never gone back.

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Thanks Pards. :D

 

25 minutes ago, Blackwater 53393 said:

It’s really a hit or miss situation and patience and holding to your limits is essential.

Yes, I can see that. When I was a kid my Dad had a side job of Auctioneering. I am a people watcher. Always have been   I used to see some pretty bizarre human behaviors in auctions. I learned pretty early how to try and act. I say “try” because a couple of times later in life I almost made mistakes allowing my ego to get involved at car auctions.

 

24 minutes ago, Cypress Sun said:

 

Not recently, matter a fact, not since the plague appeared and people started bidding stupid prices for run of the mill/nothing special guns. I swear that the people don't add up the total cost of the firearm. You know...shipping , CC fee add on, tax and FFL fees at the buyer's end. Depending on the seller's conditions and cost of the firearm, it could add $100 to $150 to the transaction. A $500 gun + $50 shipping + tax (7% in Fl) + 4% CC fees + $25 buyer's FFL fees = $637 total cost. 

 

I still look but rarely bid and if I do...I always get outbid at the end.

If I see a gun I like after reading what the seller says about a gun I go straight to the pay process and the shipping process. I know my FFL will charge me $30 to receive the gun and do the transfer so if the terms are reasonable I don’t get too bothered. 
But I have heard of people getting a deal on a gun only to wipe out their big discount with fees, shipping, etc.  

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I’ve bought 3, sold one on GB. All in the last year or 2. I’ve been satisfied. One seller did have pretty high shipping that did not realize until I had won the auction. Be sure to check! 

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Well there seem to be a lot of knowledge here about GB...or...just selling online in general.

 

Couple questions:

1. About how much do you think it cost to ship a 50" long box that weighs 12 lbs and is valued at $1000 to a Residential address about 1000 miles away?

2. Do you know how much it costs in materials to package a long gun?

3. On average, how long does it take to properly package a long gun?

4. What do you think the average Merchant Fee is for processing a Credit Card?

5. Do you know what a Marketplace Facilitator is?

 

Phantom

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I've bought two Ruger No. 1 rifles in the last year or so. This was after bidding on four or five. Probably never do it again. GB is good for things you don't often see in shops. Got two Winchester 73's there also.

I've found a small shop near work that is giving me decent pricing so I'm just getting things there as I think I need them.

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 I've had excellent experiences through gunbroker but for what it's worth all pre-pandemic if that means anything. If it means anything I avoided stupid high pricing.

 

 But like ebay I always check the seller's reputation first.

 

 

Edited by Dantankerous
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A friend of mine bid on several different lever rifles (some were packages) thinking that he would be outbid on most of them, about a week later he received a 60K bill because he had won most of them. He ended up selling them for quite a bit more than he paid, but it was a momentary - oh s**** - what did I do!

 

I bought a couple from him at a good price.

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Yes I’ve had luck

I got a Savage 99 for a great price as well as a few Rugers

 

I have sold a few guns in there as well and all was well

Edited by Dirty Dan Dawkins
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I’ve boughten and solden for years with mostly good results. Never was out and out ripped off (I once got a WWI service rifle that was rougher than described by a long shot) but overall positive. I can’t speak to prices and the bidding process other than it pays to know what stuff is selling for currently to be successful. Or bid on stuff most folks aren’t looking for.  

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I have not purchased any gun from Gunbroker.  Gunbroker is great for establishing a ballpark price.  But I want to examine the gun in person before buying it.  The only time I bought a gun that I had not personally held in my hands was when a trusted friend had done so and gave me a "go ahead".

 

I'm sure I am in the minority, but I don't see any urgency about making such purchases, especially for premium/expensive guns.  Caveat emptor.

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1 hour ago, Phantom, SASS #54973 said:

Well there seem to be a lot of knowledge here about GB...or...just selling online in general.

 

Couple questions:

1. About how much do you think it cost to ship a 50" long box that weighs 12 lbs and is valued at $1000 to a Residential address about 1000 miles away?

2. Do you know how much it costs in materials to package a long gun?

3. On average, how long does it take to properly package a long gun?

4. What do you think the average Merchant Fee is for processing a Credit Card?

5. Do you know what a Marketplace Facilitator is?

 

Phantom

Well stated, Phantom!

 

The dreaded cost of doing business. Merchant fee? You mean a shop has to, in addition to other things, pay a power bill along with banking fees, business licenses, etc?!?? First time I saw the bank bill when I was working for my buddy floored me. Which is why I use cash almost everywhere. Especially to businesses I like.

 

I remember when you couldn't find "import" lugers or Mausers because there weren't any. All bringbacks. Then the GOPA-1986 changed all that. Pretty much every military rifle used since the Spanish-American  War became available....at a price. Bira guns out of Nepal. Or Mountain pack howitzers from the same region. Snider rifles. Lugers. P-38's. Mausers of every description. Any European/Com bloc out there, SKS's. Things people hadn't seen in decades. All for cheap. I remember buying 98k Mausers by the case at just about 50 bucks each. SKS rifles I think my best price in the crate was 69 each. Could be wrong. Lugers with grips, no mags, not matching, 200 bucks. Or, no grips no mags, 169. Sold every one. Only thing sold hotter than the Lugers was the P-38's. Even the post-war al-U-minium frames, LOL. Had me a Grey ghost for a hot minute, because the dealer who had it didn't know. Wanted 125 IIRC which I paid without protest. LOL. Of course that went off to fund others so the cycle could continue.

 

I remember when a S&W model 10 was a 100 dollar gun. First 1911 I bought, WWII surplus was 175 bucks. Used Colt 1911's were 400 bucks. Ish. Bought a S&W 629 when they first came out, paid the egregious price of 369. The other day, looked at a 629 Mountain gun, 5" used but not clapped out by any means. Probably go for 900. Pretty much any "vintage" S&W revolver goes for what most of us call stupid money. But that's what they go for. Priced a new one lately? Taken a hard look at what passes for "quality" coming out of some of the manufacturers? They use "efficient" manufacturing to keep costs down. I just took in a Winchester Model 50. Semi-auto, recoil, delayed blowback with a floating chamber made somewhere about 1950-something. Built of blued steel and GORGEOUS American Walnut. Like a bank vault. Yeah. Got to shoot that. Keepin' it too.

 

Unless you live under a rock, we all know why prices are what they are. Not just guns. Houses, food, everdang thing. Shootin' irons ain't no different but auction sites just make it worse because people can't just say enough. the bug git'em and that 400 dollar gun's now six. Then eight. Enough of that affects the whole market. Yes you can game the system. I encourage you to do so, actually. Otherwise you'll never get lucky, LOL.

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1 hour ago, Itchy Trigger said:

A friend of mine bid on several different lever rifles (some were packages) thinking that he would be outbid on most of them, about a week later he received a 60K bill because he had won most of them. He ended up selling them for quite a bit more than he paid, but it was a momentary - oh s**** - what did I do!

 

I bought a couple from him at a good price.

WOW! Big Boo-Boo.

A friend was fooling around learning about GB after creating an account. He decided to test / try out bidding. He bid $1400 on a Chiappa Rhino. This was before the Covid BS. 
A few days later he won the bid. Oops!

He contacted the seller and he told him about his mistake but since he won he figured he would pay then argue with his wife later, they were moving and money was a little tight. 
He gave the seller his address and FFL info and that’s when the seller said “I don’t sell to Californians”. There was some back and forth and it turned out the seller didn’t have the “I don’t sell to California “ in his write up. 
My friend was off the hook and the seller reposted the gun. 
 

I did learn some things from his experience. 
 

19 minutes ago, J-BAR #18287 said:

I have not purchased any gun from Gunbroker.  Gunbroker is great for establishing a ballpark price.  But I want to examine the gun in person before buying it.  The only time I bought a gun that I had not personally held in my hands was when a trusted friend had done so and gave me a "go ahead".

 

I'm sure I am in the minority, but I don't see any urgency about making such purchases, especially for premium/expensive guns.  Caveat emptor.

I do prefer that as well. Trouble is, I just can’t find the revolvers I want at any of the stores near me. I have been looking at model 10s and 14s with 6” barrels. The only ones I have seen in a year are at gun shows and the conditions are just barely good and worse for really silly prices. 
I have also been looking at birth year guns. My birth year. I can easily find handguns and rifles made in 1961 on GB. Not so much in stores or gun shows. 

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Yes, I occasionally "win" something on GB.  Is it a good price or did the auction get the better of me?  Both have happened, more auctions get away than are won.  That happens at local auctions too.  The best deals come from misspelled titles or used guns that have been modified without detailing the added parts in the description.   Used the filters to create a specific search and save the search with daily emailed results.  Put in your maximum bid with 16 minutes left (after double checking the shipping, convenience, taxes, transfer and any other fees) then close the page so you are not tempted to +1.

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10 hours ago, Phantom, SASS #54973 said:

Well there seem to be a lot of knowledge here about GB...or...just selling online in general.

 

Couple questions:

1. About how much do you think it cost to ship a 50" long box that weighs 12 lbs and is valued at $1000 to a Residential address about 1000 miles away?

2. Do you know how much it costs in materials to package a long gun?

3. On average, how long does it take to properly package a long gun?

4. What do you think the average Merchant Fee is for processing a Credit Card?

5. Do you know what a Marketplace Facilitator is?

 

Phantom

 

1 - About $50 - $60 including insurance

2 - Between $10 - $15 

3 - About 15 minutes and if using a FFL on the shipper end, don't package it all up until AFTER the shipping FFL has gotten all of the pertinent info.

4 - About 3% mol.

5 - Yes, a business like Gunbroker, E-Bay, Amazon, etc

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I don't use Gunbroker or Guns America and the similar sites.  At this point they just seem to be the internet versions of the local gun stores or gun shows.  Whic means I'm not likely to find what I am looking for and there are rarely bargains.

 

However I do use a couple of dedicated firearms auction houses were you can bid in person, by phone and on the internet.  I've been pretty happy overall.   Most of my purchases for the past 7 or 8 years have been antique or vintage SxS shotguns, which is a niche market.

 

My impression is that when people get rid of their firearms collections, many are going to the auction houses.  I know one auction house probably took in a collection (or two) of Randall knives, because they have had at least 20-30 Randall knives in each of their auctions (4 a year) for the past four or five years.

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2 hours ago, Cypress Sun said:

 

1 - About $50 - $60 including insurance

2 - Between $10 - $15 

3 - About 15 minutes and if using a FFL on the shipper end, don't package it all up until AFTER the shipping FFL has gotten all of the pertinent info.

4 - About 3% mol.

5 - Yes, a business like Gunbroker, E-Bay, Amazon, etc

Thank you!

 

Very good estimates. 

 

I asked these questions because (though some of you probably already guessed why...'cause I'm an A Hole), so many folks complain without knowing details...facts.

 

Phantom

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53 minutes ago, Chantry said:

I don't use Gunbroker or Guns America and the similar sites.  At this point they just seem to be the internet versions of the local gun stores or gun shows.  Whic means I'm not likely to find what I am looking for and there are rarely bargains.

This...baffles me. GB has a very extensive "inventory". Where can you find on a daily basis a more diverse choice of firearms?

 

54 minutes ago, Chantry said:

However I do use a couple of dedicated firearms auction houses were you can bid in person, by phone and on the internet.  I've been pretty happy overall.   Most of my purchases for the past 7 or 8 years have been antique or vintage SxS shotguns, which is a niche market.

I'm going to have to question this statement. Auction houses charge a buyer's premium. GB does not. Auction houses exist on the same principle as GB - Auction fever. GB guards against misrepresentation...you are rather protected with your purchases with GB. Auction houses...as is, where is.

 

In house auctions are fun...but don't kid yourself in thinking that they are places to get better bargains unless the auction house doesn't sell via internet bidding too.

 

Phantom 

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1 hour ago, Chantry said:

I don't use Gunbroker or Guns America and the similar sites.  At this point they just seem to be the internet versions of the local gun stores or gun shows.  Whic means I'm not likely to find what I am looking for and there are rarely bargains.

 

However I do use a couple of dedicated firearms auction houses were you can bid in person, by phone and on the internet.  I've been pretty happy overall.   Most of my purchases for the past 7 or 8 years have been antique or vintage SxS shotguns, which is a niche market.

 

My impression is that when people get rid of their firearms collections, many are going to the auction houses.  I know one auction house probably took in a collection (or two) of Randall knives, because they have had at least 20-30 Randall knives in each of their auctions (4 a year) for the past four or five years.


I have also looked at local auctions. Around here, especially in southwestern PA there are a lot of estate and farm sales online. 
Many have a few firearms among the tools, tractors, vehicles and furniture. 
At first I was fairly excited about finding a new source of firearms and related gear until I realized these were auctions for families that pretty much had lost everything. I lived that as a kid a couple of times. Decided I didn’t want to reopen old wounds.  <_<

I did find an auction site that is fairly local that only lists limited firearms collections. Unfortunately, I think the site went under as I can no longer find it. 

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I am a regular user of Gunbroker with about a 1,000 purchase transactions, just purchased three last night. No problems at all. Not many auctions start with bidders highest wants to buy bid and most buyers know if they start early the will be outbid and have to rebid later anyway. The clock is a bidders best friend. Unlike Ebay it ends "sniping" and gives a serious bidder time to reconsider bidding again if out bid. With the increased demand for firearms in todays society there are no more "cheap" guns.

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I've been buying/selling on GB for over 10 years with very few issues either way.  As @Cypress Sun said prices lately have gotten pretty crazy.  I have three automated GB daily notices running that send me new listings for SKBs, Vaqueros and Uberti 1873s just to keep me current on prices.  I rarely bid anymore, but by being patient and very picky I still occasionally get decent deals. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Pat Riot said:

Around here, especially in southwestern PA there are a lot of estate and farm sales online.  

 

I know the Estate/Farm Auctioneer near my parents' rural home in Oklahoma. I was excited when he said that the next estate auction had a large number of Winchester rifles (which is common). Disappointed that most went way over GB prices. He said that was very common! It's possible to get some GREAT deals depending on the crowd and economy, but the average auction gun sales far over retail market there!

Edited by Itchy Trigger
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27 minutes ago, Itchy Trigger said:

 

I know the Estate/Farm Auctioneer near my parents' rural home in Oklahoma. I was excited when he said that the next estate auction had a large number of Winchester rifles (which is common). Disappointed that most went way over GB prices. He said that was very common! It's possible to get some GREAT deals depending on the crowd and economy, but the average auction gun sales far over retail market there!

The farm / estate auctions around here usually have working guns that are pretty beat up. There was a Ruger Blackhawk .357 that I am pretty sure had been run over a time or two. That thing sold for over $500! 
Most of the time the guns are Ruger 10/22s, .38 or .357 S&Ws in pretty back shape, Remington 870s and Marlin or Winchester 30-30 boat oars (they look pretty bad)

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There is an online auction site nearby. I've bid on items and won with all of them being good deals. Just have to remember to apply an adder factor of 124.5% on them...no matter what you bid on. The pickup site is close by and the people friendly.

 

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Success as defined by winning?  Yea.  Good deal?  Probably paid market value on average.  LGS is better if you can find what you want.  No shipping, no transfer fee added, no credit card fee, you get to handle/examine....

 

I really should black it as a porn site :lol:

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For me, the "nervous" factor of GB is sending a USPS money order to some guy at the other side of the country.
I've only had one scary experience out of six.
The guy held my money order for more than 2 weeks before shipping because the "post office is a long way from here."

On the flip side, I found the mate to my first Bisley Vaquero 44 mag in a pawn shop in KS.
The seller was a pawn shop, and I place the buy.
The fine print said, "I don't ship to CA".

I called the guy and he was a standup guy on the phone.
He described the gun in great detail, forcing cone, etc, etc.
We spoke about "why" no ship to CA... turned out to be mostly a bad taste from CA politics.

However, this guy was a real peach.
He offered to hand-walk the gun up the street to a different FFL that is willing to ship to CA.
He did so at no additional charge other than the purchase price.

That second FFL accepted the transfer, did the paper work, and sent it out to my FFL here.

 

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I made 7-8 purchases (Guns,  powder etc) only had one issue (not really a "problem")

I wanted to purchase an antique  (made before 1899) rolling block but the seller insisted that it go through an FFL anyway. I canceled the purchase.

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