What do you look for when buying a used gun? It’s not just the look and feel of a piece. And it certainly isn’t just the name. Keep the following list in mind when assessing a used gun prior to purchase.
Buying Used Guns | How To Shop Gun Blue Book Value Prices
With a used gun maybe multiple people have owned it before. The gun shop may have inspected it, but they do miss things. With these step by step tips on what to look for when buying a used weapon, you will be ready to find the best deal without getting screwed. Before you actually go into a gun shop you are going to want to check on prices for the gun that you want. There are many different resources available to check this, such as, Blue Book of Gun Values, Guns America or Gun Broker. For Gun Broker, I like to go to search for the gun I want and then check the completed auctions. This will give me a good idea of what the gun actually costs in today’s market. The information is as up to date as the last auction for that gun was. If you are out and want to have quick and easy access to blue book information, simply search the app store on whatever smartphone you have, be it apple or android, for blue book guns. It should pull up a blue book app such as the one from Blue Book of Gun Values. Now that you have a way to know what the price ranges should be on any gun you want you will want to be able to tell what to look for in a good or bad used gun. Take a look below to see the steps on what to look for when buying a used gun.
1. Check the used gun for rust
One of the first things to look for is rust. It is something to be wary of. You don’t want tons of rust but if it has a tiny amount and it doesn’t really matter to you that much, then go for it (However, if there is rust you can probably get a discount). Say no to rust or pitting.
2. Check your used gun sights
Make sure your sights are not loose. Push on them and make sure there is no movement. There are used guns that have the sights come off with just a touch.
3. Check the used gun’s firing pin
Make sure the firing pin block is there. If it is not there this makes the gun unsafe and can fire if the hammer flies forward, this is especially true if you drop it. If it is make sure the firing pin block is working correctly.
4. Make sure your used gun is safe
Make sure the gun engages in a half cock and give it a push and do the same when you cock it and make sure it doesn’t slip off. Give em a good push. If the gun has a de-cocker make sure that the de-cocker is working correctly. Make sure the firing pin block isn’t raising when you do that and that the firing pin is moving out of the way.
5. Check to see if the firing pin works on the used gun
Make sure the firing pin works. Have the clerk give you a pen, stick it down the barrel, pull the trigger and watch it fly out.
6. Examine the screws of the used gun
Make sure all the screws in the gun are not stripped out. If you need to replace something and the screws are stripped you’re also screwed.
7. Inspect the rails of the used gun
If it has rails, make sure they have nice cleanly machined edges. You don’t want them to be all banged up and not have something fit when you get the firearm home.
8. Examine your stakes on the used gun
Anywhere that there are pins. If they were staked make sure that they are still staked. People will take the slide apart and break the staking. They are staked for a reason.
9. Field strip the used gun
Be sure to field strip the gun. If a gun shop wont let you field strip a used gun I would consider going somewhere else. Detail stripping – probably won’t happen. Make sure the recoil spring is in tact and that there are no links missing or cut and modified and of course no rust.
10. Check the barrel
On the barrel, look for wear. Wear marks on the barrel is common and can happen from little use. Look for major wear issues. Look at the feed ramps and make sure there are no divots or gouges, dremel marks or machining. Those will lead to unreliability. Check the rifling. If the previous owner used steal cleaning rods it could have messed up the barrel.
11. Examine the receiver of the used gun.
Check the receiver for pins and make sure no one gouged it. Also make sure that all the pins are there.
Striker Fire Guns
Here’s what you should do when inspecting a used Striker Fire Gun for purchase.
1. Check the slide of the Striker Fire Gun
On striker fire guns, if you are supposed to pull the trigger to get the slide off be sure to check that it doesnt come off without pulling the trigger. If it does this could mean your striker engagement is messed up.
2. Check the tension of the striker fire gun.
Check for tension on the striker and that your firing pin block is working and push it to be sure it has spring tension.
You can also check out this full video on Buying Used Pistols – What To Look For
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