won NRA commemorative pair, New Vaquero in Red box: shoot?

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bwiese

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I was at an Friends of NRA dinner last nite and won at auction a pair of NRA commemorative New Vaqueros in 45LC - paired guns in red box. Methinks the serial#s reflect the pairing. Nicely blued, whitish/yellowish grips.

My winning bid of $1375 reflected a smaller, new NRA dinner during summertime when many folks are busy + in slower economy. I have seen NRA Ruger pairs auctioned at other dinners in the year prior for a winning bid at $2400ish. My bid also reflected a whiskey sour or two ;)

Besides the red box, this comes with a framed NRA certificate signed by Ruger's CEO Michael Fifer indicating there were about 1500 of these pairs issued.

The transfer dealer indicated "ooh and ahh" - and that "I maybe shouldn't shoot these".

Question: I don't generally see guns "as investments" - investments are what you do with your 401K etc. All my guns are shooters, and I don't really buy guns to flip; if I'm bored with a gun I sell it and I recover a fair fraction of cost (depend ing on use/wear variables) - so I'm happy. So, do these NRA paired guns have really special value? I don't give a damn about a few hundred bucks of supposed value on each gun lost if I shoot 'em. But is there likelihood these'll turn into, say, $5K guns in the next 5 years if left unfired (doubt it) - or will they just bear a slight 10%-20% premium over std used-but-nice New Vaqueros if they're a pair of NRA guns?

Thanks for opinions.

Bill Wiese
San Jose CA
 

AzRebel

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For me, I probably wouldn't shoot them; at least not for a while. As they are, they'll hold some collector value, but how much value is hard to tell. I'd probably hold them for a while, and might eventually trade them to someone who wanted them more, for something that I wanted more.

If you shoot them, then they become a fancy pair of shooter grade guns. They might hold some value to collectors, but not nearly as much.

So, if you have a use for a couple of nice BBQ guns, then shoot away. If a similar pair of unmatched (and less expensive) New Vaqueros will do the same job for you, then I'd probably invest in those, instead.

These kinds of things are hard for me, though. I'm a practical type man, and have no use for safe queens. All of my guns get shot, although I do have a few that get shot very little.
 

epj

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From what I've seen over the years, most of the instant collectables, commeratives, etc., don't seem to appreciate that much and have very little value in excess of a standard gun in the same condition. I'm sure there are exceptions. There are 1500 guns in this issue. Hell, there are regular production runs of some Smiths that are less than that. Bottom line, if they were mine and I wanted to shoot them, they would be black and sooty right now. If you are really concerned about value, which it sounds like you are not, try to flip them on gunbroker and buy a pair of regular production guns with the proceeds.
 

Chief 101

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If thems are the same as the ones I bought raffle tickets for from our local NRA guys it is a mitey fine looking pair. Unfortunately they are made as collecables and may not ever be of any great value. They are very pretty and should shoot very well. JMHO
Chief aka Maxx Load
 

contender

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What you have is a set of the "Guns of the Year" for the NRA. Approximately 1100 sets made. Special serial numbering,,, (Identical except for the R & L for right & left.) Those will command a bit of a premium,,, as I've seen an average of $2500 a set so far this year. You STOLE that set. Those are a Ruger Factory made set,,, not done aftermarket.
I'd not shoot them,,, I'd put them in the safe & smile.
(BTW; if you don't mind what's the serial number as I know of a buyer looking for a set with a single digit,,,!)
 

bwiese

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Thanks for the replies, folks.

As I recall, there are 1551 guns in "this release".

The 'prices paid' for such "dinner auction" guns appear to not have market reality since people are bidding them up to benefit a good cause with differential price going to "Friends of the NRA" foundation - which, of course is a great thing.

While some of these gun pairs may go for $2500 or evne more, I think that's the result of 'charitable bidding fever' in combination with liquor.

If these were Serial# 1L and 1R and the box was a one-off signed by Wayne La Pierre or Alan Gura, that's a different thing.

[FNRA does a lot with the $$ including updating shooting ranges, maintaining hunting areas, shooting/training, etc. Since it's a 501c3 charity it can't get involved with gun politics, however, except for certain legal/regulatory challenges (lead ammo issues, hunting rights issues etc. Here in CA 50% of the money stays in CA and I believe that's the case elsewhere too.]

Unless persuaed otherwise, I think I may shoot these given that these 'manufactured collectables' aren't a huge premium.

I see twin holsters in my future ;)

If these guns were *old* Vaqueros (with large frames allowing hot 'Ruger loads') the value may likely much higher - prices for all old Vaqueros have jumped now they're not produced.

I also have several other 1-in-2000 to 1-in-5000 production guns that I shoot.... [my 50th Anniv. Flattop 357Mag, my stainless Bisley Blackhawk in 45LC, a stainless Bisley Blackhawk in 44Mag I unfortunately got thru late friend's estate bequest, and my S&W 629 stainless "Classic Hunter"] ... and I don't feel like I threw much money out the door by shooting these.

Regards,
Bill Wiese
San Jose CA
 

ddd482

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ou rbanquet is coming up next month, and i am trying to scrape together enough to bid on that set to- i have no idea what i would do with it, i just want it!
 

JimMarch1

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Can I ask a stupid question?

Supposing Bill got into SASS/CAS in a fairly big way. And suppose he won at least a regional meet with these.

Documented that he'd done so, good paper trail...could that add to the value?

I ask because in the world of old collector race cars, a documented winning record with that car is a big part of it's value.
 

bwiese

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JimMarch1":emimurne said:
Can I ask a stupid question?

Supposing Bill got into SASS/CAS in a fairly big way.
And suppose he won at least a regional meet with these.

Documented that he'd done so, good paper trail...could
that add to the value?

I ask because in the world of old collector race cars, a
documented winning record with that car is a big part of it's value.

I prob wouldn't get to that point with these or any other wheelguns. I'm a fair revolver shot, but not in the quick-draw shoot'em'up style.

And while I like wheelguns & rigs, I prob wouldn't be a SASSer. Other than guns & leather, I don't go for the whole dressup thing beyond the boots I wear anyway.

Plus, I have a bone to pick with SASS' past California behavior - they used NRA traitors Ricker/Feldman - to sell us out, creating the "approved handgun Roster" - by jumping at the single-action exemption dangled in front of them, instead of unifying with NRA opposition. The CA SASS guys thought they could be a 'playa' and didn't understand what they were getting into. (The vote for CA's 'safe handgun Roster' only passed by a vote or two - and if there were unified opposition by all CA gun groups in synchrony with NRA, it wouldn't've passed.)


Bill Wiese
San Jose CA
 

contender

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I know they are your guns,,, and if you shoot them,, it's ok. But,, I do not think there will be 1551 of these guns as there are not that many events scheduled. Not even close. 1100 events approximately,,, so the numbers are gonna be closer to that. As a chairman for 1 event,, and support staff for several others,, I'm heavily involved with the FONRA. I have seen one set bring $4500,,, and several in the $2000 to $3000 range. At my event in Feb our set brought $3000. The cheapest set locally I've seen sell were $1750. Yours were a bargin. In a few years,,, when a collector wants a set of them to fill out his collection,,, and the going prices paid generally, you could realize $3000 easily. Just my thoughts. Thanks for helping the FONRA!
 

JimMarch1

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>>I have seen one set bring $4500,,, and several in the $2000 to $3000 range. At my event in Feb our set brought $3000. The cheapest set locally I've seen sell were $1750. Yours were a bargin. In a few years,,, when a collector wants a set of them to fill out his collection,,, and the going prices paid generally, you could realize $3000 easily. Just my thoughts. Thanks for helping the FONRA!<<

Welll...yeah, but how much of that "extra" is people really making a donation to the NRA? Or for that matter, "auction frenzy" added to the mix? Auctioneering is a specialized skill for a reason.

Do the guns draw that sort of loot when the money is just going to the seller in a conventional deal?

Color me skeptical...
 

wolfsong

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bwiese":2h44wigb said:
[FNRA does a lot with the $$ including updating shooting ranges, maintaining hunting areas, shooting/training, etc. Since it's a 501c3 charity it can't get involved with gun politics, however, except for certain legal/regulatory challenges (lead ammo issues, hunting rights issues etc. Here in CA 50% of the money stays in CA and I believe that's the case elsewhere too.]


Regards,
Bill Wiese
San Jose CA

Yep, FNRA is even prohibited from soliciting memberships for the NRA and signing new members from inside their functions. It o.k. to set up a table outside the event, but can't do it inside. One main focus of the FNRA is the promotion of shooting sports, gun and hunting safety classes and involvement with youth shooting. Been on the board of our local chapter for some years now. We have ranked in the top 10 nationwide for the past 7 or 8 years for raising the most money. Not bad for a little ol' city and county in the middle of nowhere.

Bill, I recognize you from CalGuns.com. Didn't know you are also a member here. We've had some lively and enlightening debates over there, although it's been awhile since I last visited. Good to see you posting here, too.

Congrats on the new pistolas. Me, I'd shoot them. I never was much for safe queens or guns as investments, per se. I always seem to buy high and sell low. Sounds like you did well on that pair, considering any money spent at an FNRA function is about the the future of gun rights, shooting sports and gun ownership, and is money well invested. Consider those two guns as dividends on the bigger eventual pay-off. Just my opinion...



Peace and God bless, Wolfsong.
 

JimMarch1

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Bill, factor in one more thing:

New Vaqueros shoot GOOD. Some of the best guns Ruger has made in years, better average QC than the large-frames.
 

flatgate

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bwiese":3qkuzx8l said:
I don't generally see guns "as investments" - investments are what you do with your 401K

:shock:

I think the 401K has slipped a bit..:roll: Not ONE of my Ruger's has lost value.

JMHO,

flatgate
 

29 Wheelgunner

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I would agree with Flatgate.

I cannot think of one single firearm bought as an investment. Several however have turned into investments. If I had those Rugers added to my humble collection, they would remain unfired.
 

contender

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To add a little more about the FONRA etc.
At these events,,, the goal is to have stuff bring double it's face value. Now,, when the NRA puts together it's annual package of special goodies,,, they are things you can NOT buy in any store. This year the package costs somewhere in the $6500.00 range. THEN the admin, shipping etc costs adds about 10% to that. So,, just to break even all items SHOULD bring in about $7150. But that doesn't make any $$$ for the FONRA.
I can tell you that the COST of that set of guns to any event is about $1175.00. And as mentioned above,, a good auctioneer can help get more $$$ but I work a couple of events where the auctioneer is horrible,,,, and these guns are desired by more than 1 or 2 people. Deeper pockets prevail. We figured our events need to generate about $2400 for the set to get our 50% net to gross. In most cases it has. I just got an update from our Rep & in his area,,, net numbers are up about 9% over last year.
A lot of folks do not realize some of the behind the scenes facts about the FONRA.
(1) It's there to raise money for shooting education.
(2) 50% of the money raised in each state stays in that state to be granted to qualified applicants each year. Think JROTC, BSA, Hunter Safety Teams, WOT, etc. The other 50% goes into a NATIONAL fund for grants for the same purposes. 100% of the NET raised is granted out.
(3) It costs to put on these events.
(4) A first year event has to net $2500 to count as a sucessfull event.
(5) After the first year,, an event has to net $3500 or more to count.
(6) Just attending & eating dinner does NOT add much if any amount of $$ to the net. You are not doing the FONRA any favors by just attending.
(7) FONRA events need volunteers and donations to be sucessful.
(8) The NRA rep is paid out of a totally different fund than the FONRA money raised. The only other paid workers are the "raffle ticket girls" who are professionals hired to help sell stuff. The more they sell the more we make. Usually they get 10% commission on what they sell.
(9) If you can't attend an event,, make a cash or product donation to the local chapter,,, as it ALL helps. Cash donations go into the total amount raised, We call it underwriting. If you donate $100 you will get your name in the program as an underwriter and usually a tent card in front of an item that was purchased (via the merchandise package) using that money. Ideally, a really good event gets enough cash donations in advance to pay for the package. (Or more.) Product donations are used as prizes in the general raffles, silent auction, or live auction. Remember,,, if it's donated,, then any $$$ raised goes to help the event raise $$.


Ok,,, I apologize for hijacking this thread a bit to help some of y'all understand a bit more about a FONRA event.
Bottom line,,, the guns of the year are special,, and quite often will bring a premium even a year later that makes them a worthwhile investment.
But,, I have seen a few FONRA special guns that have been shot,, & of course it's TOTALLY up to the buyer of them to decide what they want to do with THEIR gun(s)!!!
I do believe that in the history of the FONRA this year is the first time a set of matched pistols has ever been offered as the guns of the year. And I've looked it up to be exact,,, only 1125 sets to be made.

Thanks to all who volunteer, attend, & support the FONRA!!!!!!!!!
 

Rclark

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The investment is getting your use out of them while you are still living.... Guns are meant to be shot ... not to be put in a deep dark cave... IMHO .... Shoot 'em, enjoy 'em, and pass 'em on to your kids/grand kids ... with the stories you might have to go along with 'em. :) After all they are really just 'hunks' of metal....

FYI, I picked up a '93 Vaquero from an estate sale a couple years ago. The deceased had never shot it after buying it back in '93 ..... New in the box. Sad really when you think about it... but I am enjoying it now!
 

JimMarch1

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>>FYI, I picked up a '93 Vaquero from an estate sale a couple years ago.<<

And it's almost impossible that that critter's value has outpaced inflation. There was absolutely no gain whatsoever in buying that gun as a safe queen.
 

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