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Do letters of authenticity increase a gun's value?

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by senior smoke, Mar 30, 2011.

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  1. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    Do letters of authenticity increase a gun

    Hello:
    Do letters of authenticity increase a gun's value? Over the years, I have seen letters of authenticity usually when someone famous has previously owned a particular gun that is for sale. If it does increase the gun's value, how to check to make sure it's legitimate?
    Steve Balistreri
     
  2. Hawk46

    Hawk46 TS Member

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    Absolutely, ask any Colt SAA collector.

    I used to have two Ruger Blackhawk 10" .44's that were once owned by Hank Williams, Jr. With letters signed by him. Don't think that's a case where a lot of value was added but it was a factor both when I bought and when I sold.

    I know of no way to verify a letter but there are probably various ways to try and do so, depending on what you're working with.
     
  3. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    Hawk46:
    Years ago I was contemplating purchasing a model 12 from someone I did not know. He said the gun was previously owned by Roy Rogers. I asked did Roy sell it to you? He said no, but I have a letter a authenticity that Roy once owned the gun. Roy was deceased by this time, so I figured no real way to find out if he actually did own the gun. He went into his trailer in the bedroom with the door closed and I could hear him typing. When he came out it was on a form letter where he added Roy's name and make of gun and serial #. I decided not purchase the gun. If the letters are not real, I wonder if you can get the person arrested for forgery??
    Steve
     
  4. EuroJoe

    EuroJoe TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Provenance is key to any collectible item's value
     
  5. sliverbulletexpress

    sliverbulletexpress TS Member

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    And it's pretty darn good cheese too.
     
  6. Remstar311

    Remstar311 Member

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    They would if it was a famous person. You could easily get someone to verify the signature if you were serious.
     
  7. Hawk46

    Hawk46 TS Member

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    Smoke, I'm no attorney but the word fraud comes to mind rather than forgery. Sounds like you made the right decision there.

    Unless you're buying from a known reputable seller willing to offer an inspection and unconditional refund always beware. There may be people who specialize in independent authentication, but the cost of hiring would probably be prohibited for guns valued under $10k or so. IMO if the gun was worth more than that, it would probably be wise to get it checked out first, if possible.

    Dave
     
  8. Shooting Jack

    Shooting Jack Active Member

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    Steve, I have an old Winchester model 1873 that was made in 1879 I believe and was told that a letter of authenticity would indeed increase the value of the gun. I think it only cost five or ten dollars for the letter from Winchester. I had no plans to sell the gun anyway and have only shot it two or three time. Jackie B.
     
  9. EuroJoe

    EuroJoe TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    that's about what I would expect from someone who can't spell silver!
     
  10. JerryP

    JerryP Active Member

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    senior smoke , that is a really funny story. Any gun owned by Roy Rogers with a letter of authenticity would be well known to collectors and impossible to fake. Same with the guns owned by Hank Williams, Jr., I have read of others owned by Williams with letters.
     
  11. quartering

    quartering Active Member

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    colt offers an archive service which can authenticate the history of a colt gun. they state that it can greatly enhance the value of a gun. so there you go. good luck with it
     
  12. sliverbulletexpress

    sliverbulletexpress TS Member

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    Aw, EuroJoe is that the best you can do? I guess you don't know how to spell sliver and I'm sure you don't know what it refers to. Are you French or somthin?
     
  13. Hawk46

    Hawk46 TS Member

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    I think the question has been split:

    1. Verification that a gun has been previously owned by someone famous.

    2. Verification as to the originality of the gun as built/shipped by the manufacturer (features, dates, etc.)

    Both can add significant value to some guns.
     
  14. Hawk46

    Hawk46 TS Member

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    Hey sliver, I thought provenance is how Canada divides up their country?
     
  15. Tron

    Tron Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    So that's why everybody who's bought a gun off of me wants me to write a letter saying that I indeed owned it......adds value.
     
  16. 1oldtimer

    1oldtimer TS Member

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    I watch the Pawn Shop TV show on monday evenings. Guns and many various antique items are greatly increased in value with letters of authenticity. Clyde
     
  17. senior smoke

    senior smoke Well-Known Member

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    If I write a letter that I owned a gun, the gun is devalued.
    Steve
     
  18. Dbl Auto

    Dbl Auto Active Member

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    The letters from Browning historian Glen Jenson are really neat for $35. I got one for my Grandfather's Browning Double Auto trap gun this Christmas for my Dad. The letter gave date shipped, details of the gun, location it was shipped to, which happened to be our LGS. Letters are neat for collectors like me that are interested in the hisotry of their items.
    Doug Allison
     
  19. Hitapair

    Hitapair Active Member

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    Win M21's w/ engraving are definitely increased in value by having the letter.
     
  20. grunt

    grunt TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Winchester letters cost 60.00 now.
     
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