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Discussion Starter #1
I can somewhat understand why a person wouldn't fire an unfired classic gun. I know it's a value/collector thing. Doesn't make sence to me though.

There is also the people that buy guns that have been fired, but won't shoot them even if they have ammo for them. I'm told by these people it's because they are collectors items...Or I'm told they bought them for an investment since they got a good deal on them.

I know a guy that has 30 some rifles. He has fired 2 of them. Says they are too collectable to shoot. I told him that since they have already been fired he might as well enjoy them.

I can understand having that old rifle that was your dads or grandads that you have no use for, but don't want to get rid of for sentimental reasons.

Can someone explain this to me. I just don't understand owning something you will never use just to have it.
 

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I have been fortunate to purchase some guns over the past 18 months and have not fired a few. I can assure everyone they will go boom before the end of the year! No sense just having a bunch of safe queens that are not collectors.
 

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I agree that I part of the excitement of buying a new one is shooting it for the first time. However I have an uncle that is like this. Borrowed a shot gun from him and had to take it out of the plastic packaging to use it. But I think for him it is the enjoyment of collecting and having them not certain why if you ask him he just shrugs his shoulders and says that’s what he does and enjoys.
 

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I have know two guys in my lifetime that collected guns
and didnt shoot them and didnt even go hunting, just liked
gun collecting. They each had over 200 guns and both had
high paying jobs.
 

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I know a fellow who has over 200 Winchester rifles and he does not shoot any of them. He does not shoot at all. He is strictly a collector. But he does it for a hobby and he calls it his "retirement policy". Over the years I have done the same thing. I have rifles in my vault that have only been out of their box one time, and that was to prepare it for long term storage. I bought them strictly to collect, and for profit in the future. So I can understand why people do it. In a way it is kind of like buying gold. Except it is more difficult to maintain.

Then there are firearms that have sentimental value. Some of those I shoot. And some of those I do not. For example I have a set of three left handed Kimber of Oregon Super America's that my dad bought me for college graduation. I have never shot them. But honestly I think I am going to start shooting them. However they will never be for sale. They are already relegated to who will get them when I pass on.

Then I like to buy and shoot nice high grade rifles. I bought on of the Winchester high grade 1886 EL's. The first thing I did was take it to a gunsmith and have that nasty high gloss finish removed, and had him apply a nice hand rubbed finish. The gunsmith thought I was absolutely nuts. He said I was completely destroying the value of the rifle. But it was what I wanted. And I hunt with this rifle. And it is a dandy!! Tom.
 

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Not shooting something is a very foreign concept to a lot of folks...and understandably so...most people own firearms to use them while others have a different reason(s).....it's no different than the guy who buys a car and never drives it. He bought it because he wanted it and finds enjoyment in simply owning it....same for guns....

When I was heavily into Winchesters (the finding was as much a challenge as owning them) I acquired several unfired pieces....to take these pieces of history out and pop a cap would have been foolish, IMO....I well remember a 1950 Model 70 Hornet I bought from a guy in Texas who had bought it new for his brother who had passed away.....Just before he shipped it I remembered to ask him if it had ever been K'd, meaning rechambered to the .22 K Hornet, a common practice years ago....he said he didn't think it had....I received the rifle which looked flat new....called him and thanked him at which time he told me he had taken it to his gunsmith the day before he shipped it so his gunsmith could verify it had not been rechambered.....instead of simply inserting a resized K Hornet case into the chamber, the "gunsmith" had fired it! Turns out the brother had never shot the rifle but the gunsmith did! Was I upset? Maybe just a little but not really....

I shifted my focus away from Winchester a few years ago and sold off most of my unfired ones. Moral of the story is anyone can save money but being able to own a pristine piece of history gave me a sense of satisfaction, kept me out of the bars while providing a sound investment portfolio....

I'm still acquiring and have a bunch of unfired stuff, unfired mostly because I don't spend the time shooting as I once did.....as the old saying goes, they aren't eating anything and if I ever get the urge to sell some off I won't lose any $ when I do. Meanwhile, I get to enjoy the benefits of ownership....

In short shooting something simply to say you did so is fine if that's what you bought it for....For others it isn't necessary....to each his own....

As a postscript, my focus, when collecting Winchesters, was to be the second owner of the firearm. While this might seem difficult, it really wasn't, so long as one paid attention and listened to the seller....my oldest "find" was a 1908 Model 1886 Deluxe Takedown Extra Lightweight in .45/70 bought from the family of the original owner where it had been stored in a closet since his death....'twas a red letter day when that rifle found me....
I shoot that rifle....
 

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rflktrman said:
No sense just having a bunch of safe queens that are not collectors.
I have a brand new (old) Winchester Model 88 in 284 Win. that I would love to take to the range...And lose a few hundred $$ if I ever try to sell it because even if it has one shot fired out of it, I can not sell it as NIB.....It can stay in the cabinet !......Have a new (old) Winchester Model 94 in 32 Special as well....Same applies here.
 

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Investment!!!!!! better than gold. If some one breaks into your house, you could throw gold at him but then he will pick it up and leave. He breaks into your house again, you pull out your handy behind the door gun and give him some free lead.

The only real collector gun i have is my M1 Garand, but i let that eat every once and a while, not to often though, just when its looking a little thin in the skin.
 

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Big Ken said:
rflktrman said:
No sense just having a bunch of safe queens that are not collectors.
I have a brand new (old) Winchester Model 88 in 284 Win. that I would love to take to the range...And lose a few hundred $$ if I ever try to sell it because even if it has one shot fired out of it, I can not sell it as NIB.....It can stay in the cabinet !......Have a new (old) Winchester Model 94 in 32 Special as well....Same applies here.
Ain't no thing as unfired. They were all factory tested.
 

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Big Ken said:
Have a new (old) Winchester Model 94 in 32 Special as well....Same applies here.
NIB 94s are scarce....I had two when I was dabbling in Winchesters....strangely, they didn't bring much of a premium over what I had to pay for them....Collector interest in post-war 94s does not seem very high....BUT one thing for sure.....they won't decrease in value!

I always "hated" owning NIB guns....the temptation to shoot them was considerable but, like you said, doing so would have been a very expensive day at the range....
 

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Oh, I don't know Bob......The phrase "32 Special" sure does strange things to people and seems to bring much interest to this rifle...It's a post-64 top eject but everyone wants it...More so than the Model 88...Strangely, my "shooter" Model 88 is a minty pre-64 in 284, but it's been fired so that is the one I shoot.
 

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Ken,

.32 Specials are strong in certain areas of the country....central PA is one of them....post 64s will eventually garner a stronger following; 9422s already have, as you know....one of my two NIB pre 64s was a .32....it brought a couple hundred more than its .30/30 mate.....

Minty 88 .284s are, and will forever be, in high demand....
 

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Condition of the firearm, a magnifying glass, borescope, good lighting, rarely disassembling it, experience and a lot of patient probing....

Traces of factory grease last a long time, especially in the action areas ....that grease hardens over the years, especially in little crevices around the action and bolt....screw heads that have been tampered with can be verified via the magnifying glass, for example....a good magnifying glass is a high $ gun buyer's best friend....

I've spent hours going over a gun....I can be 99% sure but there's always that one per cent chance that I could be wrong....caveat emptor as with anything....I've walked away from a lot of guns....

BTW, I always liked "dry" guns....a dry gun is one that someone has not oiled or applied any type of preservative...any gun that isn't dry was always met with suspicion by me, and most guys I knew who had any interest in unfired pieces....
 

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I have a S&W Model 29 44 Mag. that I bought new in 1978 that I never fired a round. The reason is I had 2 other model 29s at that time. I than bought a S&W model 629 and mounted a scope. I could shoot much with the scope. So I sold the 2 model 29s and just never took the time to shoot the 1 I have still in the box it came in.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for the replies. I knew I would get some "collectors" on here telling on why the don't shoot certain guns.

But why not shoot an already fired classic? At least take it for a test drive? They were made to shoot.

Another one is adding one for the collection even though it has no collectablility? Just something they picked up along the way. Is it because they just want to say they have one? Take up space in the gun safe?

Maybe my question has to do with myself really. I get at most one gun a year. Many times something has left to make room for it. I can think of little else until it sees the range. If I were told I couldn't shoot it I think that I just may go mad.

I have too many wants in that catagory that has a use to buy something to just sit there.
 
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