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September 3, 2022 - 6:51 pm
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I have a 4th Edition of The Red Book of Winchester Values. I believe the prices quoted are retail and they appear a bit high. What is the feeling about the accuracy, at this point in time, of the prices quoted? I understand it is a subjective question.

Cheers

Kirk

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September 3, 2022 - 7:40 pm
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Kirk-

In my humble opinion I feel the 4th edition Red Book is probably the best hard copy tool we have given today’s market conditions. I’ve found prices vary from region to region and often from year to year. I find it invaluable for identifying models and variations as well as features to look for. In some cases the prices printed may seem high but in most cases I feel they are somewhat low on the guns I’ve purchased recently. A better evaluation may be obtained by examining recent sales from online auction sites but realistically you’d need to check dozens of examples to come up with a useful number. To complicate things some folks find a Winchester they really like and simply pay whatever it takes to get it. If you like it, buy it. If you think you’ll find a better one for less money, pass.

 

Mike

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September 3, 2022 - 9:36 pm
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I don’t particularly like gun value books.  They can tell you about the different models and which is worth more that the other etc.  The problem is they don’t keep up with the marketplace.  The Red book is the best but you still need to look at and handle all the guns you can.  The higher the condition or the rarer it is will always retain it’s value or appreciate in value more than an average or less than average gun.  I have at least 4 different books on gun values.  Most of these are many years old.  The data about the guns is still the same but the prices are not. 

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September 4, 2022 - 2:23 am
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Chuck said   I have at least 4 different books on gun values.  Most of these are many years old.  The data about the guns is still the same but the prices are not. 
  

I still use my ’78 1st ed Flayderman’s for that purpose–a quick reference for dates of mfg., model changes, & the like, esp. for guns I’m not familiar with.  I’ve thumbed its pages thousands of times but it’s still in very good cond.   In the first year of its publication, myself & all the other SS collectors I knew laughed at his values, because they were so absurdly low; but that didn’t matter because all serious collectors knew what the current gun-show values were.  My Gun Traders Guide for guns not old enough to be included in Flayderman is mid-’80s, but that doesn’t matter either because I never bought it to use as an actual price guide. 

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September 4, 2022 - 12:53 pm
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TXGunNut said
Kirk-

In my humble opinion I feel the 4th edition Red Book is probably the best hard copy tool we have given today’s market conditions.

  

  I agree with Mike, “best hard copy tool”. The information contained is valuable!

  Trying to place a value on a hundred year old gun is dependent on each potential buyer at that point in time. It’s worth what your willing to pay! The values in the book are based on past sales and would take a fortune teller to list current values. T/R

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September 10, 2022 - 5:42 pm
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Thanks guys as always,Smile the advice and inputs are relevant and useful.

Kirk

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September 10, 2022 - 6:46 pm
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The Redbook is a few years old now and prices have really fluctuated. Up and down. BUT, it is the very best pricing guide out there. A lot of work went into that book that may ever be updated as Dr. Shennum passed away a while back. Maybe Bert will update it, but that may never happen. I think the world of Bert even though he is retired Navy. He has always been there for me and my stupid questions.   Big Larry

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September 10, 2022 - 8:42 pm
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I have many, “pricing guides” that I value substantially.  I bought my first copy of Flayderman’s Guide in my late teens.  Many of these guides are filled with great information.  But the pricing?  That’s more problematic.  I don’t place much blame on the Guides for listing values that someone, somewhere feels is off.  I often take great exception to the values I see listed.  A common reflection I have is, “I’d buy one of those in a heartbeat for that amount.”

There are so many factors in gun values.  Market volatility, regional factors and I think most significantly, variability among buyers.  I place buyers in two basic categories:  educated vs. not educated and high roller vs. non-high roller.  Particularly in auctions, gun values are often determined by people who have inadequate knowledge of what they’re doing and/or people who have enough money that spending too much for something is not a big deal.  Having those individuals determine prices is a frustration most here have experienced.  

When it comes to updating pricing guides, the seemingly simple task at hand is to find examples of what that specific piece has sold for recently.  But where?  Auction houses, internet auction, dealer catalogs, perusing asking prices on gun show tables?  And if you use internet auctions as a guide, there’s the shill bidder factor.  Well… shill bidding is not confined to just internet auctions either.  

I am sometimes asked what I think something will sell for – and what venue might be considered.  This is an amazingly complex question.  I could write pages about all the rabbit holes involved.  But… I think I’ll hold off and just stand on the edge of that rabbit hole rather than jump in Wink

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September 10, 2022 - 8:51 pm
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I currently use a site called true gun values. This site lists very recent sales nation-wide. I no longer have faith in Gun Broker or many other auction sites as the high rollers lurk there. Don

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September 10, 2022 - 9:19 pm
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High roller or not everyone needs to be educated.  Buy the price guides for the other info, not necessarily the pricing.  Pricing does let you know which model or version is worth more.  Lack of or presence of money does not ever equate to common sense.

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September 10, 2022 - 9:52 pm
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steve004 said
Here is a piece of art that sold for $69 million at auction.  There are countless examples out there like this and even more ridiculous than this.  Compare this to paying (what we think) is too much for a collectible rifle at an auction.  

  

Untitled, 1970 by Cy Twombly (.6 Million)-15 Ridiculous Paintings Sold For Millions Of DollarsImage Enlarger

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September 10, 2022 - 9:55 pm
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86Win said
 I no longer have faith in Gun Broker or many other auction sites as the high rollers lurk there. Don

  

Don’t think many of the real high-rollers waste their time on GB–they merely give their want-lists to their favorite big-time dealers & let them do the finding.  Major auctions like Rock Island may be worth their personal involvement, however.

But you’re certainly right that GB prices are always high, which I attribute to ignorant & greedy yuppies who’ve probably never been to a gun show.

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