At a recent estate sale of 400 mostly older firearms, Curt Kramer was surprised to see gun parts and project guns go for such high prices.
The owner of Kramer Auctions points out, these guns will usually have some non-factory original parts or have been modified in some way (the barrel shortened, for example) or be missing various parts.
Several such Marlin 1895’s went for $500 to $1,500, when Kramer expected them to fetch between $400 and $800.
“There were a lot of people bidding on these guns, many more than I was expecting,” Kramer said. “That tells me there are a lot of guys doing vintage gun projects, a lot of gunsmiths working on old guns, and the original parts are getting hard to find.”
Another mild eye opener: demand for vintage but rather off-beat military rifles.
An Italian Model 1891/28 Carbine with bayonet sold for $400, while an Italian 1938 Calvary Carbine with folding bayonet went for $210, approximately twice Kramer’s pre-auction estimates.
Editor's note, this brief originally appeared in the January 13, 2014 edition of Gun Digest the Magazine.
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