What Is My Gun Worth?

Gun owners are a diverse group. Gun collectors, enthusiasts, veterans, active service members, law enforcement personnel, hunters, and gun merchants often possess a familiarity with guns that allows them to assess a gun’s value. Not every gun owner, though, possesses the same knowledge. Cash My Guns knows that some gun owners acquire their firearms unexpectedly, via gift, or via inheritance. Anyone less familiar with guns may wonder, what is my gun worth?

Cash My Guns knows that many factors go into a gun’s value, and we want to share our knowledge and expertise with you. Our professional gun appraisers will closely examine your gun offering a quick and accurate assessment.

What Is My Gun Worth?

What Factors Determine a Gun’s Value?

Make: Pistols, also known as semi-automatic handguns, remain the most manufactured and sought-after firearms in the United States. Shotguns and other firearms that rely on slug ammunition are less desired and generally retain their value poorly.
Model: Within a particular gun brand, some models will hold greater value than others. For example, the Winchester Model 94 lever action rifle is generally more respected than the Winchester Model 1911 that has a poor reputation due to a design flaw that makes it dangerous to shoot.
Caliber: Caliber refers to the diameter of the gun barrel and consequently the size of bullet required. Certain calibers are more attractive to gun buyers than others. You might hear “stopping power” used to refer to a gun’s caliber. Higher caliber guns will require fewer shots to stop the advancement of a threat. The .22 caliber long-rifle is the most common caliber of gun when referencing units sold. This mass-produced gun-type has great utility, but not necessarily high value.
Condition:

– A modern gun’s condition is broken down into the following grades: new, perfect, excellent, very good, good, and fair. An antique gun falls into these condition standards: factory new, excellent, fine, very good, good, fair, or poor. The materials used to make the gun (metal vs. wood vs. composite), the bore (interior barrel quality), and the functionality of the firearm all impact its condition.

– The Blue Book of Gun Values assesses the percentage of original finish remaining on the metal surfaces of the gun. If your gun has developed a patina (natural worn finish) over the years, do not use sanding or solvents to remove it! Your gun’s patina helps it retain its value. A “blued” patina is when the steel on a gun has been partially treated to prevent rust creating a blueish hue. This “blueing” patina is highly valued.

– The material used to make the stock of your gun also impacts its value. Plastic stocks are generally of lesser value than walnut stocks that are known for their durability, rigidity, and longevity. Besides a natural material like walnut, laminated hardwood stocks are a great alternative. Composite stocks (fiberglass, graphite, etc.) can be valuable due to the strength of the material, but the aesthetic quality when compared to hardwood may be less. 95% or better wood and blue is desirable for modern guns.

– A beat-up gun that cannot safely be fired will be much less valuable than a gun with impeccable functionality. If you are unsure if your gun can be safely fired or not, Cash My Guns will eliminate that potentially risky guess work with our expert team and process.

Original or Modified: Whether the gun remains in its original factory condition or whether it has been modified influences its value. Some modifications can increase value (adding a quality scope) while other modifications will decrease value (sawing off your shotgun). Generally, modifications will not hold their value.
Popularity: Some brands are more popular than others. For example, Browning and Winchester remain respected brands with firearms that hold their value relatively well. Jimenez Arms, as one example, receive critical reviews from gun enthusiasts. Junk guns like the Chinese SKS rifles were at one time purchased in great numbers due to the inexpensive price of $20 per gun. The popularity of a gun depends on many factors, and Cash My Guns continuously researches the factors influencing your gun’s value.
Supply / Demand: Beware of gun ads that say, “less than x guns of this model made!” A limited production may indicate that the gun manufacturer was unable to entice popularity for a given model. In other words, a limited supply does not always increase demand. Be aware of topical events like changing gun laws. A restriction on a particular gun type or gun accessory can drive prices through the roof. For example, the state level restriction of high capacity magazines can increase their demand and thus their value.

Gun Appraisal Resources

Although reference guides quickly become outdated as firearm technology evolves, the following materials can acquaint you with base-level knowledge.

39th Edition Blue Book of Gun Values
2018 Standard Catalog of Firearms: The Collector’s Price & Reference Guide
Flayderman’s Guide to Antique American Firearms and Their Values

Remember that a gun is worth whatever someone is willing to pay for it, and finding a buyer is sometimes the hardest part. Cash My Guns is your buyer and can help you identify and appraise your firearm. It can take years to develop expert level appraisal knowledge of firearms. Cash My Guns can quickly and accurately appraise your gun, eliminating your need to continuously research gun value factors. Our process is safe, legal, and hassle-free. Your satisfaction is 100% guaranteed. We’ll buy your old, used, and broken guns for cash. Start the discreet and easy process today!