Sins commited on Antique Firearms.
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Old 09-12-2012, 09:14 PM   #1
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Default Sins commited on Antique Firearms.

A few odd months ago I completed a Gunsmith course (yea me!) and after spending over 20 years working with modern weapons I have decided that I want to focus my attentions antique firearms. There is nothing better than restoring an antique weapon.

Now, do not get me wrong. When I restore them (and I have done quite a few) I only bring them back to the point of their time period. Anything above that and they loose value.

The reason for this thread is because I accidentally (along with another) hijacked another thread briefly. The person posted a thread about a Krag Jorgensen that was "sporterized" and that got me started.

So, if you are like me and you cannot stand it when someone abuses an antique firearms, post your rant here and let us all have fun with the discussion.

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Old 09-12-2012, 11:55 PM   #2
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Sporterizing a real POS is not a crime. I had a 1942 Husqvarna M38 sportered for my son. It was a missmatched rifle that although it shot well was worth nothing and I wanted to give it new life.
Hacking a true German WWII K98k is wrong, Hacking a classic Model 70 is wrong. It does not have to be an antique. I was horrorfied when they hacked a .30-40 Krag on American gun. It use to be pretty common to sporter perfect old war rifles, some folks still do. That is up to them. You can yell, scream, type anything you want, but it does not change the fact that it is their property, not yours. I agree w/ you to a point, but I'm not starting a flame war. Let it go.. JMHO.

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Old 09-13-2012, 12:28 AM   #3
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I have mixed feelings on military guns. Millions were made of some, hundreds of thousands made of many models. If some are hacked to make the owners happy so be it. Commercial guns were most often less than 100,000 and not uncommonly less than 10,000. Many commercial guns have been hacked. If hacked 50 years or more ago I can maybe understand but if done recently it is a tragedy.

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Old 09-13-2012, 12:36 AM   #4
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The problem is, what is a POS today is a valuable collector's rifle tomorrow. The K98s that were mentioned sold for about $20.00 in barrels in department stores in 1969. (I know, I bought one) A heck of a lot of these guns were "customized" and are now only good for salvagable parts. Once the hacksaw or sandpaper hits a firearm it is a POS from then on.

To me, there is a very fine line between a "restoration" and a "customization" and a lot of people can't make the distinction.

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Old 09-13-2012, 12:39 AM   #5
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It depends on the gun. Modifying/sporterizing a Mosin, or an SKS is one thing, but if you do that to a Krag, M1 Garand, M1 Carbine, 1903 Springfield, ect, that is just wrong.

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Old 09-13-2012, 01:04 AM   #6
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I have worked with antique guns and knives for over 4 decades. I cant count the number of guns and knives I have seen that was ruined ( in my opinion ) by well meaning people who thought were doing something worth while. It would be interesting to hear what the OP considers restoration. The greatest true story I heard was from a young gunsmith that completely reblued and refinished the stock of a run down Winchester model 1866. Seems he took a before and after pic. Years later he saw the very rifle he rebuilt in an old photo. Holding the rifle was a very famous indian chief. That well meaning but trajically misquided individual totally destroyed a piece of American history.

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Old 09-13-2012, 01:26 AM   #7
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i have to agree for the most part, that many fine old firearms should never be restored, sporterized or even refinished as it usually degrades the value quite a bit. but also once someone buys a firearm, it's theirs to do what they want whether we agree or disagree with their choice. if asked for an opinion, for the most part, leave it be.

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Old 09-13-2012, 01:45 AM   #8
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I say sporterize old guns as long as it is not a rare gun or rare variant and has no historic value. Meaning a gun like my 1943 round receiver Izhevsk, although I wont do any permanent modifications to mine.

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Old 09-13-2012, 03:19 AM   #9
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Im the same way. I bought a mosin about a month ago for $100. Its a great shooter but i cant stand more than 50 rounds in one sitting because of the stock. So im planning on buying a synthetic stock for it to make it more of a shooter. But i have an old Gew88 that i will never change anything on it ever. Its to important to me to change. It was my grandfathers and has to much history to change. But if i wanted a mosin to keep all original i would take $100 and buy another.

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Old 09-13-2012, 03:43 AM   #10
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I sporterized 3 or 4 relics in my youthly ignorance. I now regret each o them. It does however make the still origional guns just a little more valuable in the long run. so go ahead and make my historic remnants worth more.

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