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Old August 24, 2012, 02:59 AM   #1
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Did I buy a used gun!?

You'll probably think I'm a fool after reading this, but it's probably better that I realize that. Maybe I wont get robbed with a used gun for a new price.

I recently purchased a Marlin XL7 in .30-06. This was about a month ago. I only shot the gun once and I am a little bit of a noob when it comes to firearms. Well just a few days ago, I noticed something strange. The muzzle was scratched (bluing scratched off) with a fair amount of silver exposed. I'm very careful with my guns and take very good care not to damage them. I'm not sure if the entire muzzle end of the barrel is called the "crown" but the "inside" is not damaged, just the outer rim of the muzzle.

Now here is the thing that bothered me. I was aware that Marlin closed down their North Haven Connecticut factory back in mid 2011. The gun I purchased was marked "Marlin XL7 cal. .30-06 (or something like that) followed by "North Haven Connecticut". The North Haven marking made me a little nervous, but there is something else. The Marlin website has these rifled being called the "X7" with a list of the short and long action calibers. I know that the X7's from a while back were marked X(L)7 or X(S)7 for long or short action. If the rifles are now called the "X7" I would assume that a new rifle in .30-06 would be marked "Model X7 .30-06" or something like that, but that is not the case

When I was at the store the first time, I want really satisfied with the one rifle they had at the store. I told them I would like one ordered and carefully inspected the features of the rifle to make sure they wouldnt try to give me that one instead of the brand new rifle. When I went back to pick up the new gun, I noticed that the box had already been sliced open. It didnt look good at all. I don't really know why it was like that, but when I looked at the gun, the marks on the gun I had looked at werent on this rifle, so of course, I figured it was in fact a new rifle. I should have inspected the rifle better, but I guess I overlooked these things...

As far as guns I've purchased, there was a Marlin Model 795 purchased at The Sports Authority (great rifle btw) and a Mosin Nagant 91/30 from AIM Surplus. Nether of these rifles were messed with before I arrived at the store, only opened after I got there, in order to get the serials, etc. That was it.

It's really depressing to think that I got a gun that was not brand new in which I paid full price for... What do you guys think? Has something like this ever happened to you? What did you do about it? If someone could reply, it would very greatly appreciated. Thanks

Last edited by GunXpatriot; August 24, 2012 at 04:05 AM.
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Old August 24, 2012, 07:07 AM   #2
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Just from the tone of your post, I think you may be worried about nothing.

Many gun stores, large and small, do not have multiple copies of anything.

Not all do, but most have a display piece that may have been there a while and handled by a few people or it may have just come into the shop and put up for sale.

You never know how someone is going to treat a gun. You may find one you like that has been handled and abused or one that has been handled properly.

A lot of times when you indicate you want to buy a gun, the shop will tell you if they have another in stock or if the display gun is the only one in the house.

Sometimes you can get a break on the price if they only have the one display piece. Depending on the gun, you might not get a break at all.

If the bluing along the sharp edges is nice and clean and there are no dings in the metal or the stock, you can probably rest easy.

I know it is a bummer to think about the first ding in a new gun, but that is how those guns begin collecting the stories they could tell if they could talk.

You will remember most every one of those dings and will be able to relate those stories to others years down the road.

My advice is to not get wrapped around the axle.

Hope this helps, my friend.

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Old August 24, 2012, 07:30 AM   #3
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I would not be surprised that a new rifle was made over a year before it was ordered. The manufacturer makes thousands of guns in a run and sells them to distributors. Then the guns sit in a warehouse for months waiting for a dealer to order that model, caliber, barrel length. If that model is not selling stock would take a long time to sell. (And the factory making them might get shut down for lack of orders....1+1=2) If the only damage is the crown blueing rubbed off it was probably done during shipping and handling.
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Old August 24, 2012, 09:58 AM   #4
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I wouldn't worry about it. I have an XS7 in .308 that looked rough right out of the box but it sure does shoot like a dream. You also have to take into account that it is a "budget" rifle so they dont really get the treatment from the factory that say a rem sendero or something similar would get.
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Old August 24, 2012, 11:00 AM   #5
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I agree with the other posts and as for an opened box on a new gun it is no big deal. Because of gov. paperwork that has to have the serial number on it and, the chance that the box label may be incorrect, a smart shop owner will always get the serial number off the gun not the box meaning the box has to be opened.
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Old August 24, 2012, 05:39 PM   #6
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To Geetarman, Yes, that was very helpful, thanks

And to Big Al Hunter, yeah, I thought about that after and it calmed me down a bit, glad to know these things happen!

And to Drhc116 and sgms, thanks you guys, you've helped me to rest easy about this issue. I've shot the rifle and it seems to shoot pretty well. I just need to stop flinching. I guess in the end, most of these sort of things is making sure the rifle performs the way it is supposed to. I think it does.

Again, thanks a lot you guys, really!
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Old August 25, 2012, 03:11 AM   #7
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I would echo the sentiments above, but it would be a waste of text. They said it well enough already.

And, don't worry about the "X7" vs "XL7" confusion.
The model is the X7.
The long action variant (.25-06, .270 Win, .30-06) is the XL7.
The short action variant (.243 Win, 7mm-08, .308 Win) is the XS7.

The North Haven rollmark on the barrel doesn't mean much, either. There were quite a few Marlin barrels that got shipped to the Remington factory, when X7 production was moved. That rollmark just means that the barrel was made before the North Haven plant shut down. Other than looking up the serial number, there's no easy way of telling which plant it was actually assembled at (unless it's marked on the box).

Conversely... there were actually quite a few Remington barrels (stamped for North Haven) being used at the North Haven plant, as well. Marlin ran short on some barrels before the shut down, and used Remington-produced barrels on some models.

Both combinations of parts perform just as well. So, it's not something to worry about.
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Old August 25, 2012, 05:51 AM   #8
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You aren't the first to worry that your new gun isn't as new as you thought. Personally, I agree with the others that you don't have any thing to worry about and indeed the gun is new.
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Old August 27, 2012, 12:34 AM   #9
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My 'new' Howa 1500 was made in 2007 when i purchased it in 2010. I wouldn't be concerned, it's a rifle not a loaf of bread - it won't go off anytime soon
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Old August 27, 2012, 10:05 AM   #10
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I agree with the other posters in that I don't think you have anything to worry about. However, I assume that the manual, warranty card, etc. came packed with your new Marlin?
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Old August 28, 2012, 03:13 AM   #11
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I know the manual was in there, I'm assuming warranty card was there as well.

Davery25, that's reassuring
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Old August 28, 2012, 02:54 PM   #12
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I hadn't noticed before, that no one pointed out the typical dealers' inspection.

The open box is pretty typical of any new firearm.
When dealers receive new firearms, they open the box to check the serial number and make sure they received something they can actually sell (no major damage, no missing parts, the correct model, no obvious manufacturing mistakes, nothing illegal, etc).

Factories ship some funky stuff, sometimes..
... smooth-bore pistols.
... .357 Magnum marked barrels with .38 Special cylinders.
... missing trigger groups.
... cylinders that lock up between chambers
... rifles with barrels that can be turned by hand
... magazines with no followers
... no 'caliber' markings, at all
and the list goes on....

Dealers open the box to make sure:
A- They have the correct serial number.
B- They aren't in possession of something illegal.
C- They aren't in possession of something dangerous.
D- They won't be embarassed when a customer realizes there's a glaring issue with the firearm.
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Old December 7, 2012, 07:58 PM   #13
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not sure of an exact answer w/o seeing a pic or the rifle itself. but, one thing i've come to realize is that there is no perfect gun made. when i say perfect i mean that they are all made by a man and probably a man that i'm sure isn't being super careful like we are when we drop the green down for these firearms. i have bought firearms that run the gamut from fairly inexpensive to fairly expensive and they all have imperfections, ALL OF THEM!!! whn i start to get down about spending my cold hard cash on a firearm that has an imperfection or two i think of what a wiser man then me said "son, nothing's perfect".
good luck,
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Old December 7, 2012, 10:11 PM   #14
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Agree with all above. Have seen more than a few new guns with scratches on them. The end of the barrel is going to take the heaviest beating during shipping.
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Old December 7, 2012, 10:19 PM   #15
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I'd be more concerned about how the rifle shoots than anything else.
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Old December 9, 2012, 01:59 AM   #16
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It is surprising how long certain types of "new" products can stay in the supply line. Unlike cars guns, watches, jewelry ect can easily sit in warehouses for years.
My Seiko divers self-winding watch was 5 years old when it was bought new in the Base BX in 1986.
I have heard that Rolex can be in the pipeline even longer.
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Old December 9, 2012, 03:38 AM   #17
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Yeah, I'm probably making it a way bigger deal than it is, I've realized that after some more research I've done. Lefteyedom, I'd say you're right. It's the reason a lot of companies go bankrupt.

They'll introduce a new gun, or well, any product. They see they're selling a certain amount. They produce extra in case sales spike, in order to eliminate a potential backorder/production problem. Fine. They then realize they sold about x of this product. Apparently, they feel the need to produce twice x of the product, even knowing their sales won't reach anywhere near the number produced.

This is what creates an aggravating "Alright, let's just throw all these guns somewhere because we produced way too many!". Repeat next year. You'd think companies would spend their money and resources in so many others ways, rather than creating an imaginary surplus that they'll never need. I bet if I went to buy an XL7 10 years from now, I'll probably wind up with one from this year!
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Old December 9, 2012, 07:16 PM   #18
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Well, part of the reason that happens, is because every firearm manufacturer I know of uses batch production.
They can't keep every model in continuous production. So, they have to make an educated guess about what the market will do between scheduling (and ordering materials), the intended run, and the next future run.

Sometimes, they miss the mark a bit, a competitor comes out with a model that eats them for lunch, or the economy tanks. It's just the way batch production works.

And... they base their estimates on distributor orders. If the distributors are padding the numbers, already, then it may lead to a significant over-supply.

It's just the nature of the business.
Until some one creates a company with a feasible, affordable on-demand production method... we'll always be buying firearms that are 3 to 9 months, or even 8 years, old.
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Old December 10, 2012, 09:02 AM   #19
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as everything has gone / going up... seems the packaging has gotten cheesier...

I looked at a Remington SPS ( one of those tactikool bolt action "sniper" rifles )... I know it was NIB, but it had nasty finish wear from the packaging during shipping... I think some of these companies need to do a better job packaging the guns for shipping, where the finish gets damaged
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