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Old October 25, 2012, 08:57 AM   #1
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End of an era?

Have we seen the last of the days where mil-surp guns are a hot buy? I'm talking about years from now will there be a market for current issue infantry guns like we have for the Garand, M1 Carbine, Mausers, SKSs, Nagants, ect?

With so many ARs out there, will there be a demand for the M4/M16 mil-surps? Will they even be offered? What do yiou guys think?
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Old October 25, 2012, 09:02 AM   #2
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I don't think there will be. The thing about all those old awesome weapons is that so many of them are semi and bolt action. There aren't too may military weapons now that are semi that we don't have a civilian version for already at usually a lower cost. Most of the old full auto stuff has to be converted or chopped up and the market for it isn't huge anyway.
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Old October 25, 2012, 09:49 AM   #3
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It is very difficult to predict these cycles as they are based on politics, the mood of the nation, and what economic interests control the Government.

Good President Reagan era broke a twenty year embargo on surplus weapons that started somewhere around 1968. You can look in post WW2 magazines and there were lots of surplus rifles you could buy and that dried up after the Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King assassinations. The country was anti war, anti gun at the time.

However hateful Democratic administrations since President Reagan have imposed conditions to dry up the supply, you can see that by just going through your magazine collection and seeing what is not being imported anymore, supply has decreased since President Reagan left office.

All we need is a combination of bad Congress, another evil Democratic President and bad media event (Stockton Massacre for the US and Dunblane for the UK) and private ownership of firearms will end, never mind the importation issue.

I am of the opinion that availability peaked in the Reagan Administration, has been going down since, and in my lifetime, I will never see as many military surplus on the market as I saw in the 80’s.
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Old October 25, 2012, 09:58 AM   #4
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I think the point of full auto capability is likely to be a dealbreaker.I do not think our BATF and lawmakers,and much of the public would go along with just changing out a few small parts,either.To easy to retrofit.

At least we can buy/build civilian versions of (close to) our current service rifle.
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Old October 25, 2012, 10:27 AM   #5
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Entirely possible. But they would need to be equipped with semi-auto lowers to be sold to the public.
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Old October 25, 2012, 10:38 AM   #6
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I think we are coming to the end.

CMP use to have lots of Krags...............they're gone

CMP use to have lots of M1903s............they're gone.

CMP use to have lots of M1917s............they're gone.

CMP use to have lots of M1 Carbines......they're gone

CMP still has M1 Garands......................soon we'll be asking where they went.

Best by on the market right now, CMP M1s.....they won't be around long, I don't see any more American Surplus Rifles coming up.....what are our kids and grand kids going to do for American Surplus Rifles?
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Old October 25, 2012, 12:53 PM   #7
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In addition to the supply drying up, the climate towards "OMG! Those are weapons of war!" is so prevalent that I doubt military surplus will ever available again.
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Old October 25, 2012, 01:06 PM   #8
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The days of mass conscript armies needing to be armed quickly is pretty much over, so there won't be huge stockpiles of rifles laying around waiting for a national mobilization. Armies today are much smaller and way more efficient: they have far fewer warriors and far more support for them. This trend started even before WW II.
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Old October 25, 2012, 01:20 PM   #9
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Old military M16's are UGLY! Aluminum might work ok, but it really doesn't hold up all that well. I was shooting with a cop on a private range about a year ago - he was shooting an M16 that had been issued to him - 90% of the finish was worn off of the upper/lower receivers. It worked fine, though.
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Old October 25, 2012, 02:22 PM   #10
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No expert on this subject, but i would like to comment about something I saw on the local news.

Availabilty of American surplus firearms......

News story several years ago. Fort McClellan (local).....dumpster loads of old miltitary firearms being saw-chopped right through the center....then sent to the recycler for smelting as scrap. Bolt guns....M1 carbines.

Made me sick. Scrap iron price.
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Old October 25, 2012, 02:35 PM   #11
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I missed out on the $75 SKSs. By the time I decided that I wanted one I had to pay $295 for it. It's nice, and in the big scheme of things, probably worth that, but I hated to pay it. Now it seems like they are going higher than that.
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Old October 25, 2012, 06:31 PM   #12
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All things cycle

Yes, the current era of 'surplus' will end. One doesn't see old Webley revolvers sold in bulk like they were in the period immediately after WWII.

Depending on political control and market pressure, there may be 'surplus' M9 pistols at some time in the future. On the other hand, Beretta probably wouldn't be happy about that, as that might cut into sales of newly made pistols. Of course, they might make a killing on spare parts. (Who knows?)

The biggest problem is that of fully automatic weapons. In order to 'surplus out' old M16s, the U. S. would have to repeal several current federal laws. It's possible, but not what I think 'likely'.

However, on the bright side, modern manufacturing methods can and probably will drive down the cost of new firearms. We can hope.

Stick around and find out, eh?
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Old October 25, 2012, 07:43 PM   #13
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Archie - I've been going through 1960 American Rifleman magazines. The prices on Webleys will make you cry. It made me cry.
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Old October 26, 2012, 07:57 AM   #14
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Heck, the prices on everything back in 1960 will make you cry.
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Old October 26, 2012, 08:45 AM   #15
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Just bought a copy of a surplus firearms magazine off the newsstand -- the editor's column said it's the last issue. They are ceasing publication. One of the reasons he cited is that they can't find writers who know anything and are willing to write about the old guns but I suspect a large part of it is also that supplies of guns and parts are drying up and they must be having problems finding advertisers.

Unless we get the laws changed, there won't be any surplus stocks of current military long arms. Everything is full-auto or select-fire, and those can't be sold to the proletariat.
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Old October 26, 2012, 02:00 PM   #16
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virtually all the military arms newer than the SKS are select fire, and can NOT by offered to the buying public by US law. This is the end of the era for availability of milsurps (cheap) and their ammo.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old October 26, 2012, 02:21 PM   #17
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With the death of ready made arms surplus arms, we might see an increase in home builders using parts kits. The old stuff has to go somewhere, and there are still a lot of places looking to make a little money off it.
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Old October 26, 2012, 03:33 PM   #18
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Yes the days of $79 E.Ger Maks,$79 Hakims and FN-49s,$79 303 Brits,it's funny how everything was $79,those days are gone.Weapons that had been in storage since 1945,ammunition for weapons that hadn't been carried in 60 years.
Parts kits for Mp40's,Mp41's,Lancaster's,Stens,Brens,Cz24's,1919's,and other exotic gear that everyone was making semi-auto kits.
At some point the barrel is emptied,even 100 million Mosins dry up,and the warehouses in east Krapistan, store bright new rifles and munitions,instead of 8mm mausers,and 1911 Steyr-Hahns that sat there for decades.
After the recent hostilities are over we may see some cheap 5.56,or 7.62,but nothing like the days of yore.
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