View Full Version : Collector value diminished?

August 16, 2002, 07:31 PM
I posted this on another forum and got no replies. Hope someone here can give me the right advice...

I'll get you started in the laughter department, I'm talking about an SKS. It is Russian though, from the Tula works if I'm not mistaken, and I've fired about 50 rounds through it. It was new, unfired when I got it. Problem is that the baked-on enamel is chipping in places, as is that funky gel-like finish on the wood stock. Would it detract from the collector value of this piece if I reparked it and refinished the stock...assuming a perfect job? The importer's name is barely etched on the surface, it might disappear...

Thanks in advance

James K
August 16, 2002, 10:53 PM
I think it will be a long time before the SKS, even a Russian one, has much collector value. I would say go ahead and do what you want. I would not worry overmuch about the import mark, but you might leave it if you can, so no one can say you removed a marking.

(BATF would use the importer to start a trace, so they consider the import mark in the same category as the manufacturer's name on a commercial or US gun. That being said, I never heard of anyone getting into trouble for having removed an import mark; some are not even on the receiver, which is where they are supposed to be.)


August 17, 2002, 12:48 AM
The importer's mark appears to be engraved rather than stamped...like an electric engraver used with a Kroy-type lettering guide. It is quite shallow and the took the engraving tool right through the finish.

Maybe I could etch it beforehand to deepen the letters.


Walt Sherrill
August 18, 2002, 11:07 AM
I agree with Jim.

Just shoot the thing and don't worry about collector value.

You probably won't live long enough to see the values of these things rise appreciably (except as a result of normal economic inflation.) There are just too darned many of them available, and more will become available.

And as Jim suggests, don't remove any marks.

Mike Irwin
August 18, 2002, 03:30 PM
There are 2 schools of thought.

1 is that a firearm should be pristine, even if it goes through a painstaking conservation/restoration.

The other one is that the gun should bear signs of honest work as a badge of honor. Your SKS really belongs in that category.

Leave it as it is.

Cap n ball
August 19, 2002, 02:19 PM
To really make it worth something you would have to take it and several thousand rounds 140 years into the past to Gettysburg. Just shoot it and enjoy it.

August 19, 2002, 04:01 PM
Thaks all...I never did expect it to become a valuable piece, I just wondered if it would be considered a bastardization of a c&r...Mike I appreciate your thoughts, my problem is that as the finish goes to pot with all the flaking of enamel and stock finish, I can't ascribe it to some honorable use, as I put all of about 100 rounds trough it...it's just decaying basically due to arsenal materials and methods. I'll do my best to conserve it in its current state

Thanks again

Mike Irwin
August 19, 2002, 10:25 PM
"it's just decaying basically due to arsenal materials and methods. "

Which is part and parcel to what the Russian SKS is -- a testament to poorly finished first rate functionality.

I still say leave it as it is.

If you ever tie in with a serious collector, he's going to understand a lot better than some 22-y-o-a punk who wants a rattagat.

August 22, 2002, 04:58 PM
Excellent point, Mike