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Gun show display only!
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RickC
October 26, 2021 - 12:07 pm

1sp_QuotePost

Just inquiring to how some of the seasoned collectors here who attend & set up at gun shows, display their firearms or items not for sale. Do you place a small sign indicating “Please Do not Touch”-display only. Would you have your display behind you to one side but still visible for viewing?
I’ve only attended a couple small shows & it’s been a few years now & not sure if displays only are even wanted.

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Northern edge of the D/FW Metromess
Posts: 4863
October 26, 2021 - 1:03 pm

2sp_QuotePost

Some shows have special display tables, WACA and TGCA have some pretty spectacular examples, IMHO. I regularly bring a gun or two for eye candy, once I filled up my “lazy Susan” type gun rack with Winchester 22’s that were not for sale. Loved hearing the stories from folks about the guns they grew up with. At collector shows I think most folks will handle my guns with respect so I don’t mind as long as they’re careful. Going to shows is hazardous for guns, letting people see your treasures is a calculated risk.

 

Mike

Life Member TSRA, Endowment Member NRA
BBHC Member, TGCA Member
Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
I hate rude behavior in a man. I won't tolerate it. -Woodrow F. Call, Lonesome Dove
Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.-TXGunNut
Presbyopia be damned, I'm going to shoot this thing! -TXGunNut
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CANADA
Posts: 127
October 26, 2021 - 1:15 pm

3sp_QuotePost

Actually, well-put-together “Display Only” tables are a welcome change at most shows where I usually encounter a garage sale of junk and over-priced clunkers.

However picking through all the stuff in search of treasure is fun.

Up here in Canada, I’m acquainted with a couple of advanced collectors (also senior WACA members) and have had the privilege to set up beside them from time to time. 

Aside from admiring their displays I’ve always helped to keep and eye on things as “THE MORONS” ignore polite “Please Don’t Touch” signage and there is no shortage of thieves out there.

As long as you keep your eyes open you will probably be ok and people really appreciate a nice display.

But beware of thieves, they work in teams to distract you and some of them are pretty slick.

A couple of years back, a watchful eye discouraged an obvious piece of criminal trash from pocketing a beautiful Brass Winchester Compass that it had picked up contrary to the signs. But then again, being a former Policeman I admit my opinion is somewhat biased.

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NY
Posts: 6150
October 26, 2021 - 1:17 pm

4sp_QuotePost

Set up all the signs you want, & accidents are still possible: careless people drop something on your table, or bump into it, etc. Of course, it’s a risk you have to run if you’re selling. However, the greater chance for accidents lies in merely in hauling your guns to a show & setting them up.  It’s the same kind of risk posed by firing a mint gun–it’s not in the firing, but in the handling & transporting. 

The only relatively safe means of display is one set up against a wall with a barrier separating the crowd from your tables by a distance of several feet. 

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Posts: 339
October 26, 2021 - 2:56 pm

5sp_QuotePost

I have set up displays at local shows.   I put out “Please Do Not Handle Without Permission” signs, and keep all small items such as cartridge boxes and reloading tools in locked cases.  I also try and not leave the display unattended.  

Some people put up really elaborate displays.  My display must be able to be put together and taken down without assistance and fit into a Honda Accord.  

My local show is done by the Utah Gun Collector’s Association (they use NRA judging rules) and they encourage displays by members.  Two display tables are provided free of charge.  

Here are a couple of photos of a display I did earlier this year.  

IMG_3882.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_3880.JPGImage Enlarger

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I call myself a collector as it sounds better than hoarder

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NY
Posts: 6150
October 26, 2021 - 3:11 pm

6sp_QuotePost

Bill Hockett said 

IMG_3882.JPGImage EnlargerIMG_3880.JPGImage Enlarger  

Set up against a wall is what I was talking about.  I presume there was a rope or other barrier forcing people to keep their distance–or there should have been!  A glass case is safest of all.

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Posts: 540
October 26, 2021 - 3:52 pm

7sp_QuotePost

Folks, let me wade in with my opinions.  Mine only.  When I retired and was able to attend the Cody show, I was totally uneducated!  I had a table that was a “Trade Table” out in the middle of the room, and had not asked questions or such.  I tried to have a small display as well as some that were for sale.  First, my display was not judged as I had not entered the “Displays” as I did not know they were separated.  It took several years, finally making a statement and finding out the details, before I got formally into displays.  The other part of being neither fish nor fowl, folks would come by, see my display of 1873’s, and apparently assume the entire table was displays only and move on.  Thus I neither was “judged” for my display (nor taken very seriously) nor was I very active even for “lookers” at those I was trying to convert to either cash or a better quality.  Once I found this all out, I would pay for a display table (which were almost universally against the walls) plus pay for a trade table just across the aisle so I could watch folks around the display.  It works for me.  I do not attend other shows, so this may not apply to all of them.  And YES!!, you are risking the condition of display rifles in the handling/transporting/etc, plus those whose eyes are in the tips of their fingers.  Signs never work all the time!  But I have found overall the displaying of a themed grouping well worth the risk in the satisfaction derived.  You definitely need to be alert, though.  Boxed cartridges have been known to disappear along with other miscellaneous small items.  Comments have already been made in this arena.  Tim

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Posts: 1541
October 26, 2021 - 4:38 pm

8sp_QuotePost

Agree with a lot of Tim’s sentiments. 

But would add that, if your selling a firearm and don’t have a price tag on it, then when I walk by it I automatically assume it is NFS and for display only. As if you don’t know what you want for it, then how would I, as I stopped trying to work on my psychic abilities a long time ago. If you want to sell it and don’t know what you want for it, put a pie in the sky price on it, as we can always walk it down from there. At least your are giving me a jumping off point. Plus who knows, someone maybe more than happy to buy your pie in the sky.

When displaying something, if you truly don’t want it touched whatsoever, you better have it in a display case behind glass or strapped down well.

For my smalls (like cartridge boxes or reloading tools) that I don’t want being handled or walking off, I put inside an acrylic display case. You can buy the same acrylic display cases that the (toy) model cars hobbyist use. You can get them at Hobby Lobby and Walmart for $10-15 bucks and they come in different sizes. Plus when your done with the show and get home all you have to do it place them back on the shelf and they’re ready for display.  

1891DisplayCase.jpgImage Enlarger

I always enjoy a good thorough display, for the educational reasons of it and seeing something new or different. Wish we had more of them and wish it was like the old days and firearms manufacturers did displays everywhere. But those days are long gone.

Sincerely,

Maverick

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NY
Posts: 6150
October 26, 2021 - 5:26 pm

9sp_QuotePost

Maverick said

But would add that, if your selling a firearm and don’t have a price tag on it, then when I walk by it I automatically assume it is NFS and for display only.

No price tag I interpret to mean not seriously interested in selling, except at a sucker price.  And at a crowded show, who has time to waste asking for prices?

I watched a show on History Ch. which examined the revolution in retail marketing that occurred when un-priced goods were taken from behind the sales counter as they had been traditionally sold & displayed, with prices, on racks or tables accessible to customers.  It meant that clerks could no longer vary the price depending on what they thought the traffic would bear.

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Posts: 1656
October 26, 2021 - 10:17 pm

10sp_QuotePost

59A1D830-8569-44F6-AC61-C286467219F5.jpegImage EnlargerF3DE9E47-CBFB-4A7B-9024-FA44984AFDC5.jpegImage Enlarger29BC1A8B-AC51-4633-B5E2-59FC9AE0077A.jpegImage Enlargerclarence said

Maverick said
But would add that, if your selling a firearm and don’t have a price tag on it, then when I walk by it I automatically assume it is NFS and for display only.

No price tag I interpret to mean not seriously interested in selling, except at a sucker price.  And at a crowded show, who has time to waste asking for prices?

Not necessarily so.  I purchased this Model 1892 rifle a week ago Saturday nearly first thing at a nearby gun show for less than you might think.  When a dealer is standing behind me mouthing to the seller he will give $250 more as I am peeling off hundreds and when I walk away from the table and a bystander offers me $500 more than I paid and I’m given a death glare and told I’m crazy when I don’t accept his offer…well, I didn’t waste my time asking the price nor did I pay a sucker price.

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RickC
October 26, 2021 - 10:25 pm

11sp_QuotePost

Nice rifle & purchase mrcvs. Good for you for not re-selling.

RickC

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NY
Posts: 6150
October 27, 2021 - 12:01 am

12sp_QuotePost

mrcvs said I didn’t waste my time asking the price nor did I pay a sucker price.

 

You’re obviously living right to have such luck, but that was a remarkable exception to the general situation with unpriced guns. Are you sure you didn’t get there before the seller had time to put out his price tags?  Something incredibly similar happened to me many yrs ago when I happened to catch a seller (not a pro, just a collector) just as he pulled a gun out of its case & named a price off the top of his head, which I instantly accepted, while a pack of other dealers looked on like starving jackals; have a strong feeling he regretted it later.

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RickC
October 27, 2021 - 12:05 am

13sp_QuotePost

Starving jackals ?.

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Posts: 1056
October 27, 2021 - 1:56 pm

14sp_QuotePost

Well over the years I’ve set up at many shows from Woodstock Ontario to Las Vegas Nv.  and a lot of shows in between. First and foremost I never leave the table unattended, secondly There are ample “DO NOT TOUCH” signs  and with the exception of a couple shows where I just simply had to many, I usually , and tastefully, cable them down. I always check in with My “neighbours” , like David, to keep an eye on things and I likewise their table. I’ve displayed as few as 4 pieces , at the Cody show a couple years ago, to as many as a whole collection of Winchester Commemmoratives, 113 pieces, at the Woodstock show, 14 tables. The only item I’ve ever lost was a pewter Commemmorative tray, I guess someone needed it worse than I. Nearly every show however someone has to be reminded  “these are for display so PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH”. My next display will be educational and informative, and will include all the pre-1900 Winchester lever guns from the Henry to the 1895, in standard s.r.c. , rifle and musket configuration, 27 pieces in total , along with several pieces of Winchester memorabilia, razors, knives, watches lights, etc. As most of You know it is a lot of work setting up these displays but the rewards have been far greater than the risks. Due partly to My age, 73, and the means to transport I have been slowly changing directions and in the near future I will have a display of the various Colt percussion revolvers , from the “countefeit” Paterson to the 1871-72 conversion. app. 35 pieces. I’m currently short a couple pieces but working on them. This will be a lot easier to transport, set-up etc. , but maybe more problematic as far as “unwanted handling”. I have spent a large part of My life enjoying this hobby and the people involved, good and unsavory, and up until the fiasco with the “fake” Paterson it has been very rewarding. Some unforgetable experiences like when the gun discharged at the Burford  Ont.show many years ago, thank heavens not mine, and a friend of mine who got to shoot a would be robber out in the parking lot of the Ft. Myers Fl. show, boy did He pick on the wrong “old guy”. The memories and experiences I’ve accumulated over the years is priceless, so thanks to all who have been part of this hobby. I just couldn’t imagine possessing all these firearms and hiding them away in a safe and being so secretive about them, and never getting to meet the fantastic people involved. Thanks again.Smile20211027_092646.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092646-1.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092714.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092731.jpgImage Enlarger

W.A.C.A. life member, Marlin Collectors Assn. charter and life member, C,S.S.A. member and general gun nut.

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Melbourne Australia
Posts: 168
October 28, 2021 - 3:05 am

15sp_QuotePost

Henry Mero said
Well over the years I’ve set up at many shows from Woodstock Ontario to Las Vegas Nv.  and a lot of shows in between. First and foremost I never leave the table unattended, secondly There are ample “DO NOT TOUCH” signs  and with the exception of a couple shows where I just simply had to many, I usually , and tastefully, cable them down. I always check in with My “neighbours” , like David, to keep an eye on things and I likewise their table. I’ve displayed as few as 4 pieces , at the Cody show a couple years ago, to as many as a whole collection of Winchester Commemmoratives, 113 pieces, at the Woodstock show, 14 tables. The only item I’ve ever lost was a pewter Commemmorative tray, I guess someone needed it worse than I. Nearly every show however someone has to be reminded  “these are for display so PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH”. My next display will be educational and informative, and will include all the pre-1900 Winchester lever guns from the Henry to the 1895, in standard s.r.c. , rifle and musket configuration, 27 pieces in total , along with several pieces of Winchester memorabilia, razors, knives, watches lights, etc. As most of You know it is a lot of work setting up these displays but the rewards have been far greater than the risks. Due partly to My age, 73, and the means to transport I have been slowly changing directions and in the near future I will have a display of the various Colt percussion revolvers , from the “countefeit” Paterson to the 1871-72 conversion. app. 35 pieces. I’m currently short a couple pieces but working on them. This will be a lot easier to transport, set-up etc. , but maybe more problematic as far as “unwanted handling”. I have spent a large part of My life enjoying this hobby and the people involved, good and unsavory, and up until the fiasco with the “fake” Paterson it has been very rewarding. Some unforgetable experiences like when the gun discharged at the Burford  Ont.show many years ago, thank heavens not mine, and a friend of mine who got to shoot a would be robber out in the parking lot of the Ft. Myers Fl. show, boy did He pick on the wrong “old guy”. The memories and experiences I’ve accumulated over the years is priceless, so thanks to all who have been part of this hobby. I just couldn’t imagine possessing all these firearms and hiding them away in a safe and being so secretive about them, and never getting to meet the fantastic people involved. Thanks again.Smile20211027_092646.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092646-1.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092714.jpgImage Enlarger20211027_092731.jpgImage Enlarger  

Hi Henry.

I assume the legal action went no where with your purchase? 

A man can never have too many WINCHESTERS...

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Posts: 1056
October 28, 2021 - 1:41 pm

16sp_QuotePost

There is no “legal” recourse now I need to send the “collectors”

W.A.C.A. life member, Marlin Collectors Assn. charter and life member, C,S.S.A. member and general gun nut.

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