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nsb,

Yes, I have a few guns that only go afield on nice, sunny days. The cherished ones are: A Belgian Browning Sweet 16 made pre-war that is New in and out. A Winchester .30 WCF Rifle with octagon barrel made in 1919 that is Excellent and a .264 Winchester Magnum custom rifle made up on a Mark X action with a very nice walnut stock.

I have plenty of other nice rifles and shotguns for regular days afield and a few "Mud Guns" for the worst weather and terrain that can possibly occur in any hunting season. Nice looking guns are a work of art and many folks cannot abide using the stocks to bust brush to get to the deer stand. I prefer my $15 Mark III for busting brush or sitting in the rain.

Webley
 

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There's no gun that's too nice for me to use.

- But there are art-piece type guns that are too silly-looking for me to buy. - You know, the ones that are not made to shoot, but to 'collect' instead?

When I made my first custom Harley, the guys I knew parked them in the livingroom, rode them once a week and spent the rest of the week going over them with a toothpick and a toothbrush.

Hanger-queens!

Mine got a bath every now and then, I rode it hard and got both wheels off of the ground at least once a day. I went ahead and wound it up, made it scream.

I'm a shooter, not a collector.
 

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I have a Gran Lightning in 20 that looks like it's had 25,000 rounds through it and been dragged through every nasty briar patch in central Kansas for 25 years, does that count?
When Remington came out with the 375 H&H in the classic I ordered one at the LGS, paid extra to be the first one to pick through a dozen of them. One had truly spectacular wood, I never put the bolt in it let alone shoot it. About 10 years later I sold it on a whim, made 200.00 on it, in reflection I wish I'd never sold it, NIB ones know sell for great money, I miss seeing it and showing it to people.:(

I don't currently own any safe queens, had quite a few before the economy took a dump in 2008.
 

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I have never abused my guns but I do use them and I normally purchase my firearms to use, but I do have a few exceptions.
The first is a S&W Model 18-4 in 22LR that I bought 13 years ago NIB and unfired. I have never fired it as I am still in the process of wearing my first Model 18 out, 10,000 rounds and counting. I do plan on eventually shooting it though.:)
Another one I have is an Remington Mohawk 48 in 12 gauge that is unfired NIB. It was made in 1970. An older gentleman had a gunshop for many years in a neighboring community. He passed away and about three years after he died his wife discovered this shotgun and two others in their factory boxes stashed in a closet. She sold them to a local dealer and I happened to walk in when he was putting them on the self. I brought the old 48 home. It is without flaw or blemish and is easy on the eyes taking one back to a time in America when even economy guns looked good. It will eventually be taken to the sporting clays range whenever I get around to it.
I also have an Winchester 37A in 12 gauge with a 32" full choke barrel. It was given to me by my uncle when I was a year old and I have always babied it having only squirrel hunted with it a few times when I was younger. It has not a mark on it and I have decided to just let it rest as it is mint and pushing 45 years old.
And last but not least is the Marlin. A local businessman whom I new for several years passed away some years back. I was also friends with his grandson and we had done some gun trading from time to time. Well, this old guy had quite a bit of everything from an honest-to-God furnished bunker to bicycles, not to mention a nice collection of firearms. His grandson ended up with several and said he would sell me one so he invited me over to take my pick.
Well, I was building a new house at the time so my rathole was somewhat depleted, but I scrounged up all the cash I could and went over to see what there was to pick from. There were five guns that he was wanting to sell. Three were 1950's era Winchester Model 12's never fired, never assembled NIB. The fourth was an unfired NIB Winchester Model 100 in 308. The fifth was an unfired, NIB Marlin 39A made in 1967 with the hang tags still on it and the Marlin sticker still on the forearm. That price on that one was within the last dollar I had on me so i took it home just as proud as a new pappy.
That has been some years ago and I have never fired it. I had planned on hunting with it but I haven't been able to bring myself to do so. I don't appreciate the rifle as much as a collector would because that would be a real prize for someone who was into 39A's. After all, how many unfired, 1967 NIB Marlin 39A's are out there? Couldn't be many. So with that in mind, I will probably never fire it. Go ahead, make fun of me. I have been saving for a Freedom Arms Model 97 in 44 special for a while so selling that rifle may put me close to the $$ I need. ( above guns may have been fired at factory?)
 

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All made for a purpose. Guns or for that sake knives are to be used. I cannot see the point in having a knife and putting it on a stand in a cabinet, same with a gun; waste of money not to shoot and enjoy. Take care ? Yes, for sure, but a slight scratch or ding reminds you of a days hunting somewhere.
I have a couple which due to age more than anything need a bit of special care, but they all get an outing or three during bird season, that is what they were made for over a hundred years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Some interesting responses. Truth be told, I hunted with that Winchester/Turnbull gun the first year I got it and shot a nice buck with it. After that I didn't use it again. I just wasn't as comfortable with it as I am with my "used" guns. Most of my guns have thousands of rounds through them and have some memory marks on them. They're quality guns but weren't gussied up after the sale. I guess I'm just more comfortable with "work" guns rather than something a collector should own. I guess I'll have to just take it out again and maybe after it gets a ding or two I'll be more comfortable with it.
 

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I relate it all to being similar to buying a new truck. The first ding or scratch I notice makes my heart hurt, after that it isn't so painful.

When I was working at the Chevy dealership a rancher was in with his fresh off the lot pickup for a rear bumper and grill guard install. Just before leaving he asked if he could borrow a screwdriver. I watched in shock as he put a jagged scratch down the box side. As he handed the screwdriver back he said, "Now i can use it without worrying about the first scratch!"
 

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Discussion Starter #30
I once bought an Anschutz Exemplar handgun and took it out to the range to try it out the day I received it. A guy there asked if he could look at it. I said sure and handed it to him. I swear his hands were an illusion. He put his hand out to take the gun and it fell right onto the concrete pad he was standing on. I don't think any part of his hand ever touched the gun. It got several large and ugly gouges on it and I hadn't even fired it yet. I never worried about that gun after that. I think the rancher had the right idea with the screwdriver. I guess it's the anticipation I can't stand.
 

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The most stressful part of custom gun building is final assembly.
 
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I should get my Anschutz 1430 back next week with the new barrel, normally opening up the barrel channel for a slightly larger contour is no big deal, this one's going to require an a little more care as the stock is nearly irreplaceable.
You get alot of money in a gun and it makes start thinking about how you use it.
 

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All of mine are too nice to use, save one. That one is a parts-bin AR15 carbine. I rarely shoot anymore but when it does go out, it gets the business. My other ones are all works of art, and are treated as such. My target rifle is up around $9,000. The Stomper is around $4500. My various other smokepoles are anywhere from $1500 to $2500. I build quality; I build class. For me, there is almost more joy and pride in the ownership than in the use. I'm funny like that...
 
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Of a good gun platform

I went ahead and wound it up, made it scream.

I'm a shooter, not a collector.
Guns are for shooting and for hunting so my guns shoot and they hunt and still get treated with respect and never put to rest unclean.

I have too much respect for beautiful wood around good metal on guns, and the metal inside bikes, and the metal inside and on airplanes to abuse any; regarding bikes that respect extends to the potential effects of high kinetic energy on the carrier of that KE (the bike driver as well as the bike) within the narrow limit of the virtual one dimensional boundary imposed on you by a bike to make it scream in such intimate proximity to mother earth. Now, in the quiet cockpit of a supersonic jet fighter, sitting ahead of the engine sound you are flying away from, any possible sceaming is not for your own ears; however, there still is a three-dimensional continuum around you which has its own unseen but touchable boundaries, so you can make her groan at times should your soul and ear be sensitive to her sounds.

This is not off topic - I forever see the beautiful interfaces between applying guns and applying airplanes to do what they have been conceived and designed to.

So how can a gun ever be relegated to a boring life in the dank darkness of a gunsafe? As little as the sleekest, heart-touching, menacing beauty of a brand new jet just off the production line can not NOT inspire you - no demand of you - that she be taken up into the wild blue and taken to the limits of her design. She may and even WILL groan - but at the published maximum pressures there will still be a 1.5x safety factor within the metallurgical make-up of her genetics. See ANY sleek, shapely gun and not burning to shoot it? Heck, never.
 

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All of mine are too nice to use, save one. That one is a parts-bin AR15 carbine. I rarely shoot anymore but when it does go out, it gets the business. My other ones are all works of art, and are treated as such. My target rifle is up around $9,000. The Stomper is around $4500. My various other smokepoles are anywhere from $1500 to $2500. I build quality; I build class. For me, there is almost more joy and pride in the ownership than in the use. I'm funny like that...
Never seen a 9,000 dollar target rifle, must be pretty special, what is it?
 

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Yea, a couple, one being a presentation grade Model 21 Winchester. That one rarely comes out of the vault and is only handle with cotton gloves on.

Other than a few, very rare collectors guns I have managed to pick up over the years the rest are built to shoot and they get shot. Some get handled a little more carefully than others, but they still get shot but I have some very nice rifles that get somewhat mistreated at times.
 

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Had a couple

Had 2 that were never fired and one was a 6" Python that I'd bought new in 1980 (I shoot the other). Sold it and a replica Win 1895 in 30-06. Every other gun I have gets used weather it likes it or not and haven't heard one complain.
 

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Never seen a 9,000 dollar target rifle; must be pretty special. What is it?
My twice-built rifle. Started life as a SAAMI 300WSM; 31-inch and fat Krieger barrel (stainless; nine flutes), Richards Micro-fit stock that ate up $2300 in my gunsmith's handwork, Montana M1999 lefty action and multiple scopes... the last being a $1000 Vortex Viper scope. It was around $4700 in the WSM configuration. The WSM would never shoot less than half an inch, and it fed like krapp in the long-action of the Montana. Wouldn't feed at all, really. I decided I needed to create a mildcat round to remedy the feeding problem. So I created the .300 Nevada Desert Magnum, which is the .30-06 Springfield on a magnum case. Creating a new round requires forming dies, a new barrel, reloading dies, cylinder brass and lots of money to pay for all of it. As broom_jm says, you write five or six fat checks to various people when you deign to create a wildcat round, then you sit back and wait six months to a year to have it come together. Making the 300WSM into the 300NDM was another 4000-some dollars, and took almost four years from the first glint in my mind to the final configuration in wood and steel. But it will shoot, and that's a great joy to me. I just wish I could take it out more often. There's a picture of it in these pages, somewhere. Put it up several years ago. The rifle fired its first round in July of 2012, so it's been here for three years or so...
 

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There is no such a animal. Guns are like money, you cant take it with you. Enjoy it while you can. No safe queens here, I am not keeping a gun unused so some of my family can run to the pawn shop with it as soon as I die. Just my two cents.
 
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