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The original post was "Looking to buy a gun through the GunsAmerica website. Does anyone have experience purchasing a shotgun through GunsAmerica, good or bad? Any pitfalls or suggestions?"
You did not answer the post but spent a long critque of my post. If you had expressed your thoughts and answered the original post, i would not be posting this.
Your clasiffication of my statements as "fallacious, naivete or ignorance, is simply unacceptable and an unwarranted attack on this forum. I simply put forth my viewpoints. You are entitled to express your viewpoints but not entitled to classify my viewpoints.
"the Internet has opened up the marketplace for almost any commodity--including firearms--in a way that has improved selection exponentially and cut overhead significantly. Yes, there are inherent risks in buying any item online, just as there are inherent risks in buying in a face-to-face encounter. The solution is learning how to become a saavy shopper in a new, bigger, lower-cost marketplace."
The Internet has in fact increased the price of collectable guns by allowing that person who will spend the highest price to connnect with that person who has a collectable to offer. The Internet has also brought many more purchasers into the collecting field who are not experienced and do not collect a lot and who will pay any price. The 'I have got to have it syndrome and I better get it before the price goes up' is rampant. I have collected for over 30+ years and watched selling change from local Gunshows, local dealers and Shotgun News/Gun List to Internet web sites and Internet auction sites. Gun shows are dead long with the News and List. The recent CADA show in Chicago is an example. Few dealers with collectable material and about 65% of the show was non firearms.
At an auction, there is no 3 day inspection period as a reputable dealer will offer. I reiterate, auctions along with eBay are akin to gambling because you are caught up in the reward/anticipation syndrome.
If you think the individuals that sell guns at auction are honest and the guns are as represented, then I have to assume your auction experience is minimal. Viewing a firearm by a picture and description over the Internet is a crap shoot.
The majority of guns I see for sale on GunsAmerica are over priced hoping for that individual with either no experience and spendable cash or who must have that item. They simply are not priced to sell. Reading the description of the average item goes like this: Mint condition, blueing worn in a few places, a few nicks in the stock, a few modifications done that increase value, limited production in that only made 5000, a real buy! Many of the descriptions do not post any condition or are akin to fraudulent in thier description.
You can and I have, connected to dealers with good product to sell using GunsAmercia but only after going through the verification steps I have outlined and the final 3 day inspection.
"I'll gladly accept the responsibility and risk of an online sale if the savings will justify it."
There may also be difference in the cost of the firearms that are purchased that determines the amount of risk one accepts. Purchasing collector grade firearms is expensive and must be done with caution. Sending x amount of money to an individual without any storefront or verification from other dealers will eventually result in dissapointment. The question is how much dissapointment/money can you tolerate.
I also purchase collectables from eBay and I can unequivocally tell you that much of what is sold is overpriced. eBay's only saving grace is that it does allow you to find just about whatever you want. Many times I look on eBay and find that I can purchase the item for less from an Internet dealer.
I found one individual selling a signed sporting book for much more than the retail value because it was signed by the writer. A Goggle search found that you could purchase the book directly from the writer signed for list cost.
The Internet is where gun sales are at these days and that is a fact of life. The 'old days' will not return. Therefore a new standard of purchasing must developed. The original poster was looking for advice/experience. I hope I gave some good conservative advice in my original post. I did not attack anyones post amd obeyed the rules of this Forum and used good Internet ettiquette. -Dick