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Old October 14, 2009, 12:07 PM   #1
mrray13
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gun show..WOW

Just here recently, I attended the SEMO Gun adn Knife Show as I do every year. (this year was great as LEO and women got in free, so I only had to pay for my son to get in!) In any case, as I was strolling around I spied a 6" blue S&W model 17, .22lr of course. As it's condition appeared to be like new, I own a 1975 -4 version in 90-95% condition, I picked it up to see what they were asking. Imagine my surprise to learn it was brand new, had the ILC and they wanted $1000 for it!!

Needless to say, I put it right back down, lol. While I knew S&W was bringing back some of it's older models, I didn't know the 17 was one of them. My son then asks, "if the new one is worth $1000, what is the old one worth?". Before the show, and I know gun show prices are higher, I figured my 17 was worth about $500. So I guess, besides the little rant, why the huge price for the new ones? Even at Gunbroker, they are $1000, yet the old ones are $400 cheaper, in most cases.
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Old October 14, 2009, 12:39 PM   #2
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MSRP is over a thousand on that model. I reckon it's because S&W thinks that they can reintroduce a discontinued model, call it a classic and say it's from the Performance Center and folks will disregard the fact that it's been heavily cheapened since those same models you can procure for $400 were produced. I ain't buyin' it.
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Old October 14, 2009, 01:38 PM   #3
Mike Irwin
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Not to mention that many of those "classics" have about as much to do mechanically and structurally as a pig does with lipstick.

I've always said that S&W should have adopted any one (or all) of several potential tag lines for its "classic" line up, including...

Classic Fail

Classic Bastard

Crapsic.
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Old October 14, 2009, 02:30 PM   #4
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I don't necessarily oppose the S&W "Classics" lineup on principle. I think that it makes sense for guns that are rare and really expensive (M24) or really hard to find in unmodified, un-refinished condition (M1917).

I do, however, question the value of reintroducing the Models 14, 17, 18, and 36. The original guns simply aren't that hard to find, even in mint condition.

At least the "Classic" M36 has a street price in line with a comparable M60.
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Old October 14, 2009, 02:33 PM   #5
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Hah, I didn't know they'd reinvented, I mean reissued, the Model 17. Even with a BIN price of $869 - which somebody paid after many relistings - I think it's overpriced.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=141806155

And I gladly paid $999 for a Colt WWI Repro. The first one, not the current one. What a great shooter that turned out to be.

What am I offered for an 8-3/8" 17-4 with the box and a Burris 2x scope? How about a 4" 17-6 full underlug? I'm rich, I'm rich.

John
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Old October 14, 2009, 02:36 PM   #6
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A GRAND because it's a copy of an Older model??? What a farce.
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Old October 14, 2009, 04:23 PM   #7
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Unfortunately, if they can sell them at that price, they will be laughing while you all are crying. This should make you think twice about getting rid of nice guns in case you need to replace them someday.
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Old October 14, 2009, 07:28 PM   #8
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Sigh, threads like this always bring out the "Smith's gone to hell in a handbasket ever since they stopped pinning barrels, recessing chambers, began using MIM internal parts and put locks in their guns" crowd.

Truth is, the "Classic" Smiths are priced only slightly higher than the new "non-classic" Smith revolvers. Which is to say, the higher prices on new guns reflect increased manufacturing costs plus supply and demand. I'm sure one could have purchased a Model 17 or its predecessor K-22 back in the day for a hundred bucks or less, but that's when people lived a middle class lifestyle on salaries of $150 per week and new cars cost under $2000. In other words, times change, as do prices.

If you want to read about the quality of the Classic series, the gun mags are full of articles about them. These include side by side comparisons with their predecessors. Generally, the Classics do quite well in comparison. I've yet to see anyone on this forum or any of the others complain about the quality or accuracy of a Classic model that he or she purchased.

Having said that, I tend to buy used guns. Not because I don't like the new ones but because I simply enjoy sniffing out bargains. To each his or her own, I say.
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Old October 14, 2009, 08:14 PM   #9
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6 mos ago ...

I found deals on old classic revolvers all over the place. I bought a bunch of S&Ws, and Rugers. Then, all of the sudden, they have sky-rocketed! The same guys that were selling me 66's for $350, now want $550. I told them that I had purchased there before, and offer $400, but that doesn't even come close. Guess I should just be happy that I got the ones I did before they took off.
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Old October 14, 2009, 08:32 PM   #10
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wonder what that 17 would cost if they named it the "vintage" line????
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Old October 14, 2009, 08:43 PM   #11
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I agree with Stevieboy on all points. Well-said, and nothing more I can add.
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Old October 14, 2009, 09:33 PM   #12
The Happy kaboomer
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I agree with Stevieboy. True msrp is high but you can usually beat it by several hundred $$. I have 2 "classics". A 4" blue mdl. 21 and a 6 1/2" nickel mdl. 24. Workmanship is surperb and I don't regret any way what I paid for them. I think its great that Smith has resurrected these older models. I collect Smiths and the new stuff is good as the old stuff, i.e. my 617 shoots as accurately as my old 17 & 18. I buy old and new.
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Old October 14, 2009, 09:52 PM   #13
CraigC
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Quote:
Truth is, the "Classic" Smiths are priced only slightly higher than the new "non-classic" Smith revolvers.
Sorry but I'm not in a hurry to spend $1000 on a new, cheapened version of something I paid $265-$285 for less than ten years ago. Calculating inflation, they shouldn't be more than a hundred bucks higher. Hell, I only paid $300 for a mint, nickeled M-15 three years ago.
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Old October 14, 2009, 10:09 PM   #14
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Personally, I hope S&W can sell all the "Classics" they can make at whatever price the market will bear. I own stock in the company and want it to succeed. I think we all should invest in American gun companies. Who else is going to make our guns?
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Old October 15, 2009, 01:27 AM   #15
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it may be worth it if the loss the lock
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Old October 15, 2009, 07:44 AM   #16
Jart
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With the caveat that personal anecdotal experience is what it is, I'm pretty much with CarGuyChris.

Some models are still easy to find in reasonable condition for less than MSRP on the new version and, in some cases, less than street price.

Others are next to impossible barring swindling a widow out of something she has no clue of its market value.

At least regionally, one of the less obvious is the model 29. I looked for three years before one of a vintage and condition I wanted materialized locally (during which time 3 M57s showed up - go figure). If one wants a 95%+ 29, one will pay considerably more than the going rate for a "classic" or be prepared to wait for someone to die.

(sounds morbid but one of my 57s and the 29 came from estate consignments)

The days of "older, better and cheaper" being viable as a blanket statement are toast. At the risk of blaspheming in the presence of the faithful I would also submit that, in the specific case of the 29, the "better" part might be up for grabs as well - S&W didn't exactly cover themselves with glory on some of those early to mid 29s. I'm happy with a post-Tomkins, pre-Saf-T-Hammer 29 but finding it was like snipe hunting on a grail expedition.

Admittedly, I limit my auction buying to a very short list of sellers that I know will allow a firing inspection - one too many bubbafied innard S&Ws have mostly cured me of internet purchases otherwise. Those with a charmed life or higher risk tolerance might be able to come up with viable older S&Ws easier than I.

Additionally, I would suspect that "NIB with warrantee" carries a lot of weight with the general gun-buying public - probably not internet gunboard denizens but the actual buying public - two different groups with only moderate overlap.

I suppose we'll find out by the speed with which certain "classics" hit CDNN's close-out pages (I believe I've seen some already). Whether any of them can beat the apparent land speed record set by the Thunder Ranch 21 should prove interesting.
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Old October 15, 2009, 07:51 AM   #17
18DAI
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I don't understand why anyone would pay more for a counterfeit, when the REAL S&W can be had for less. Regards 18DAI.
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Old October 15, 2009, 08:14 AM   #18
madcratebuilder
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Quote:
I found deals on old classic revolvers all over the place. I bought a bunch of S&Ws, and Rugers. Then, all of the sudden, they have sky-rocketed! The same guys that were selling me 66's for $350, now want $550. I told them that I had purchased there before, and offer $400, but that doesn't even come close. Guess I should just be happy that I got the ones I did before they took off.
I had the same experience. I have no desire to own a new S&W, but I'm always looking for a nice thirty or more year old model. Prices have seemed to gone up 60-80% in the past two years. I have to blame the guys that are paying that kind of price. Prices would come down if the guns are not selling. Two of my local shops well price a S&W very high, then lower the price each week until it sells and there's always someone welling to pay a high price.
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Old October 15, 2009, 08:39 AM   #19
Jart
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Quote:
I don't understand why anyone would pay more for a counterfeit, when the REAL S&W can be had for less. Regards 18DAI.
Does that mean that you do understand when someone pays less for a counterfeit than the real thing?

Model 58 is another fly in cliché ointment:
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=142782621
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=142975579
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=143195667

And, when someone buys one of these:
http://www.ableammo.com/catalog/prod...ucts_id=112600

He gets one of these for free:
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=142103571

Looks like the counterfeit is good for a 1/3 discount from real.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and internet-predict that within 4 years the remaining real models that are cheaper than new will be gone and we'll be reduced to typing:
"I don't understand why anyone wouldn't pay double for a real one"

Not that that would be a bad thing - cuts down on the likelihood of carpel tunnel and all that.


When collectors get interested in what used to appeal primarily to shooters, clichés get trampled in the process. First 58s than the more common 29s then 57s - 'till the decently priced ones in excellent shape are all gone.

(For the benefit of anyone resurrecting the thread 4 years hence to check on my predictive abilities, the now-defunct links lead to 3 older 58s at 1,100 to 1,200 and a new one for 830.00. The last is someone offering a manual for 25.00)
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Old October 15, 2009, 02:46 PM   #20
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Mike Irwin wrote:
Quote:
I've always said that S&W should have adopted any one (or all) of several potential tag lines for its "classic" line up, including...

Classic Fail

Classic Bastard

Crapsic.
I can't believe anyone would not want to pay a high price for the wonderful revolvers S&W now produces!

I recently had all my 20 to 40 year old Smith's (M27, 28, 19, 15, 13, etc.) sent to a special gunsmith, who made them like the new ones!

He drilled holes in the frames to imitate those wonderful internal locks, replaced all the steel parts with MIM parts, and installed two piece barrels.

Of course, I have very late stage syphilis, so I might not be thinking clearly....

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Old October 16, 2009, 10:45 AM   #21
Mike Irwin
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Did he round the butts on the ones that were square butt?

That was one of the hallmarks of the "classic" revolver -- a round butt "square butt."
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Old October 16, 2009, 12:01 PM   #22
Jart
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Quote:
Did he round the butts on the ones that were square butt?

That was one of the hallmarks of the "classic" revolver -- a round butt "square butt."
One of the small but infinitely annoying aspects of hunting down older S&Ws - filed strain screws on square butt revolvers.

Numrich is out, Brownell's has none and S&W lost the recipe.
Rather makes a mockery of "six for sure".

Fortunately, member Stainz comes to the rescue:
Quote:
I change the strain screw to a #8-32 x .5" hardened SS socket headed set screw. You'll need to travel to your local Home Depot - they have them plastic bagged in a big drawer-filled cabinet for 2/$.56. Get some blue Loctite, too. Get to the range, bringing a proper sized Allen wrench. Insure the revolver is empty. Replace the OEM spring and strain screw with a full power Wolff leaf and the new set screw, after coating it first with blue Loctite. Adjust it to where the leaf looks like it was - and test it with Win/CCI primed ammo. If you get ftfs, turn the screw in (CW) a quarter turn and repeat. Continue until you have no ftfs, then add a quarter of a turn and put a drop of blue Loctite on the set screw's threads and let it dry at least overnite. If the revolver initially has no ftfs, turn the set screw out (CCW) a quarter of a turn at a time until you get ftfs. Then repeat the earlier steps.
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