The design and technology used to develop firearms have radically evolved. From history enthusiasts to mechanics buffs, many people are interested in the different guns that have been released around the world.
One key thing to know is that “antique firearms” specifically refers to guns manufactured during or before 1898. Otherwise, guns are typically referred to as vintage or collectible items. Regardless of which family your gun falls into, there are some considerations everyone should keep in mind as they shop through the firearms available on GunBroker.com.
Doing your due diligence on confirming the value of a gun for sale – whether on GunBroker.com or from an offline seller – involves asking the right questions:
– Is the gun still being produced? Limited releases will fetch more value. Guns tied to major historical events – such as a 1943 German-made Mauser – will carry a different value than low-cost productions.
– Is it an original? Do all of the parts have matching serial numbers? Are all of the elements authentic and high quality?
– What is its condition? A gun appraiser will rate a gun’s condition, usually on a scale that distinguishes between new and used firearms. GunBroker.com requires sellers to select from three different condition designations. Permanent physical damage to the gun will count against it, as will any long-term modifications, including alterations or restorations. Guns that have been tampered with are less valuable than the original.
– How difficult is it to import? If a gun is particularly difficult to obtain in a particular region or a specific part of the world, its value will increase.
– What technology does it employ? If the specific design is unique or notably innovative for its accuracy or reliability, it would command more value.
There are specific considerations that arise with every make, surrounding manufacturing and design details, but no universal rules apply. It would be best if you examined each gun’s circumstances on a case-by-case basis.
Overall, you don’t want to make any long-term alterations to your firearm. Realistically, these firearms are old, and many have endured a lot, and so they will require some cleaning and maintenance. Minor rust or pitting can be addressed, although significant damage should not. Reblueing, light cleaning, and light oiling are all acceptable. GunBroker.com offers several guides on gun cleaning and maintenance.
Guns may have been stored in a wide variety of ways. One of the most common occurrences is that the gun will have been submerged in cosmoline, a wax designed to prevent rust. You are certainly allowed to gently remove cosmoline from your gun without its losing its value. GunBroker.com addresses cosmoline removal, as well as other acceptable gun cleaning and maintenance methods.
No matter what drives your interest in antique, vintage, or collectible guns, being careful in your buying process is the best way to increase the odds of a satisfying purchase that serves you as more of an investment than anything else. GunBroker.com offers a wide range of antique, collectible, and contemporary models that you can buy to round out your collection.