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  #1  
Old 01-04-2021, 09:15 PM
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Default Collecting Plastic Pistols??

I've been thinking about my "collecting," especially my S&Ws, both pistols and revolvers.

And I have a couple of questions:

1. Back in the "day" were folks buying Smith pistols (1st, 2nd, and 3rd gen [or any others ala BHP or Colt Gold Cups]) as simply the best "tools" available for LEO work, or hunting, or self protection, or competition; or for the future as an investment? And why or why not?

2. How about today? I wonder the breakdown of people buying metal pistols/revolvers as an investment or collectors' pieces, versus for actual use (again, LEO, hunting, self-protection, etc.)

I know from my own purchasing that I wanted an example of all three generations of Smith pistols, in 39, 59, (and 69), plus 40 and 45; and 38S&W, 38 special, .357, and .45 in revolvers. I never bought (read could afford) collector grade guns, but took great joy in amassing them in shooter grades.

But I wanted most of them for actual shooting or carry (CS9, 4513TSW, 4013TSW, M&P .40, Shield). I've never considered buying, say, an M&P as an investment.

So here's the big question:
What do folks think about whether people are buying plastic pistols (M&P, Sig 320, Glock, etc.) for anything other than actual shooting? Are folks buying, say Glock 19s, and putting them in the safe, complete with packaging and papers to sell in 5 or 10 years. (Or, who was smart enough to buy a couple of Pythons 10 years ago to store in order to reap the goofy prices they are going for now?)

In other words are peoples' attitudes towards buying different today than they were 20 years ago...or have we always just bought the most modern thing to use, took good care of it, and luckily now find they are worth more and more.

I just buy stuff I like and could probably get by with 5 or 6 handguns -- a smallish 9mm, a medium sized .40 and a regular sized 45; instead of the bunch-a-guns I have in the safe. (And could probably forego the .40)...same with revolvers: J-frame, 38 special ala model 10, and 4" 357.

Wadda ya think? Is anyone "collecting" plastic?
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Old 01-04-2021, 09:26 PM
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I've picked up a Gen 3 Glock 23 and 22 for my collection as this was what I use to be issued with when I was in the Police. Given Australian Gun Laws, I've only purchased them used and at a low price as these models will never really increase in value if I purchased them brand new.

I'm now after a Glock 27 to complete the collection.

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Old 01-04-2021, 09:31 PM
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People collect all sorts of things for various reasons. While it is hard for us to imaging someone collecting plastic guns I am sure there are those that do. Take for instance the 98 Mauser in all of its different variations at the close of WW2 there were thousand brought back from Europe, and who know how many more imported post war they were cheap so were 1911's M1's, and many others no one thought of them as collectables back then. Many Mausers were sporterized to suit their owners. Now those same guns are worth quite a bit. I drive a 1964 Chevrolet C10 stepside I can remember as a kid my daddy buying similar trucks for no more than a few hundred bucks now days that won't buy you a fender. I look at new trucks and think they will never be considered classic, but who knows...
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Old 01-04-2021, 09:44 PM
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I used to collect Swizzle Sticks and Match Books.
That was when I hung around places which had those items.
I also buy and keep the guns I like, many of which are Smiths.
If you like Plastic Guns, go for it!
You are officially authorized.
The Green Light is on!
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Old 01-04-2021, 09:49 PM
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No.

Firearms are a poor 'investment'. I have a fund that's doing 15% this year. Try and match that without an FFL.

Collecting is a loosing investment unless you go after the high end pieces. Start at $2500. There isn't any plastic in that category.
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Old 01-04-2021, 10:04 PM
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If you ask this question on any of the sites dedicated to "Combat Tupperware " you'll be bombarded with comments about tactical utility, the use of firearms simply as a tool and selection of the best tool, and ergonomics. Those getting hot and bothered about Gen 1 Glocks are few and far between.

I'm sure somebody collects them, but if you think you're going to beat the S&P with your Glock collection...uh...you won't.

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Old 01-04-2021, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LostintheOzone View Post
No.

Firearms are a poor 'investment'. I have a fund that's doing 15% this year. Try and match that without an FFL.

Collecting is a loosing investment unless you go after the high end pieces. Start at $2500. There isn't any plastic in that category.
I have to respectfully disagree as a pure stand alone investment yes it would not be wise. I had a collection of Mauser rifles an Enfield a Arisaka type 38 I had accumulated these over a period of about 10 years. There were 7 rifles in all I never paid retail and was careful with my purchases. 2 years ago I decided to sell (wife was convinced I was dying) and buy myself a classic truck records indicated I had spent approximately $2000 on these when the last one sold I had $5000 to find the truck I wanted, my wife was amazed as she never really supported my habit I mean hobby. Now if my math is correct that works out to about 9.5%, give or take. I wish I could figure the risk vs loss numbers, but that's above my pay grade. Yes I could have made more with typical investments, but it wouldn't have been near as fun. I now collect S&W revolvers using the same principles the best part is my wife now thinks I might just know what I am doing. For what it's worth I do have a 401K in good old mutual funds, and a savings account I look at the guns as part of a diversified portfolio.
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Old 01-04-2021, 11:45 PM
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I bought this one through the P.D. Never carried it on duty. But, given the opportunity and the deep discount, why not.

Been a few years, but, see no reason to get rid of it either.
I will keep it.

It is one that goes on the road with me, everywhere.

enjoy,

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Old 01-04-2021, 11:50 PM
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I have an acquaintance who has, I believe, 19 Glocks. He said all of them are around 20 years old or older. He's just a shooter, not a collector for profit. I guess he just likes Glocks. But only the older ones for some reason. Maybe somebody like that may be willing to pay a premium for some obscure Glock NIB, but I doubt anyone bought anything polymer 25 years ago thinking $$$$$.
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Old 01-05-2021, 12:08 AM
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Was gold a good investment? Beanie Babies? Enron stock-the "smartest guys in the room"? Real estate? How about Lucent? Toilet paper? Ammo?

Virtually every investment, it depends - when did you buy it and when did you sell it?

(To which I would add, and what did the dollar do meanwhile?)
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Old 01-05-2021, 12:23 AM
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I have never bought a gun as an investment. I buy 'em just because I like 'em.

Sold off most of the accumulation a few years ago. I think I broke about even. But, that wasn't the point. The accumulating, the research, the negotiations, the acquisitions, the shooting.... it was all, well, entertaining.

I enjoyed it. And that was the point. I feel it was money well spent.
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Old 01-05-2021, 01:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Onomea View Post

I have never bought a gun as an investment. I buy 'em just because I like 'em.
This is pretty much my intention when I am buying guns. For the most part I figure on taking them out to shot them at some point. The only two I am pretty sure I will keep unfired deliberately are the Punxsutawney Phil Commemorative S & W Model 629 .44 Magnum revolver and the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club Winchester Model 94 .30-30 that marks the 100th anniversary of the incorporation of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.
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Old 01-05-2021, 03:20 AM
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I have a buddy who collects all things Glock. He has most if not all the models and variations within the models - no G18, though. He even manged to find both a G25 and a G28. With the exceptions of the G25, and G28, I believe most, if not all are NIB. He has the knives, tools and all sorts of promo stuff. To me, it is a pretty impressive collection!

I collected a bunch of military surplus firearms pre-2008. They were cheap and under $200. I collected them because I like(d) them. Now, I look at them as an investment.

Mosins (Russian) were $50, on sale 15-20 years ago. They were a dime a dozen. Even up until a few years ago, they could be had for ~$150. Now they seem to start at $400 and are going up. I think the most I paid for any milsurp was $350. Almost every single one of the milsurps I have is over $300, at least, looking at GB prices and stuff being sold on various websites.. Right now, I'm just sitting on them. I'll sell them, eventually...
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Old 01-05-2021, 04:14 AM
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I can guarantee you there are collectors out there stashing away NIB (insert brand and model of polymer semiautomatic pistols here). Eventually, they will no longer be made with their current specific features and a future buyer will get the "gotta have it" bug and pay extra money for one, or they want a "birth year" gun, or will have some other reason to want it.

Of course companies sometimes come up with plastic guns that seem pretty collectible for various reasons - the recent ex-US military Sig-Sauer M17s come to mind.

On the surface it seems easy to discount these non all wood and steel guns as future collectibles, but common NIB guns eventually go up in value. And they are still guns with intrinsic utility, not Beanie Babies or Pet Rocks.
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Old 01-05-2021, 06:58 AM
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My stock broker was pretty much worthless, he not once had advice that panned out in 17 years! My brother and I gave him a card a card at his retirement reception about 4 years ago. We were talking how bad the returns were on investments, but then he says "What else you going to do with your money?" I said buy guns, Pre-War large frame, large caliber 95% or better Smiths or Colts. He smarts of and say was is the return? I replied I have a friend that was up 350%to 400% in the last 6 years. Then he pops off , "what on one or two guns?" No, on 45 to 50 and is still buying. When you don't need the money to eat You just keep re-investing. (Same phrase he used all the time!) Now my friend is still getting 100% plus a year, His original 25 grand is about 200 grand!

"Yes, but is it a safe investment?" My response is, Remember Enron, World Com, and AT&T Tanked the same week. (Dad lost about 2.5 million in 48 hours!) The problem is: On good old guns, somebody dies for you to make a good buy!

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Old 01-05-2021, 07:47 AM
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As much as I’m not a fan of plastic pistols, I know that I am outnumbered by those that are. Those who are and future generations will definitely be seeking to buy those early ones .Current collector’s may disagree with that prediction because they themselves are not interested in those.But we are not talking about them here in this category.And like everything else those early NIB or near to will bring in crazy money.
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Old 01-05-2021, 08:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by merl67 View Post
People collect all sorts of things for various reasons. While it is hard for us to imaging someone collecting plastic guns I am sure there are those that do. Take for instance the 98 Mauser in all of its different variations at the close of WW2 there were thousand brought back from Europe, and who know how many more imported post war they were cheap so were 1911's M1's, and many others no one thought of them as collectables back then. Many Mausers were sporterized to suit their owners. Now those same guns are worth quite a bit. I drive a 1964 Chevrolet C10 stepside I can remember as a kid my daddy buying similar trucks for no more than a few hundred bucks now days that won't buy you a fender. I look at new trucks and think they will never be considered classic, but who knows...
Funny you mention pickups. My daughter is showing me some of the "affordable" collector pickups and many are those awful boxy pickups from the 70s and 80s. Each generation has their take on these things. I already know people who collect "plastic" pistols. While I own no pistol I don't carry, I do own 4 P99s (9mm, 40, 357, and compact 9). Took me 4+ years to find the 357! So I guess I'm one of those guys.
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Old 01-05-2021, 03:47 PM
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As far as collectible Glocks, from what I've seen on the net, the Gen 3 RTF's 17 and 22's are the most wanted by Glock fans.
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Old 01-05-2021, 03:54 PM
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Old Smiths are collectable due to great workmanship that we usually dont see in most of todays guns. They are guns of a bygone time.Just dont see this happening with plastic guns
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Old 01-05-2021, 04:03 PM
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Can you imagine this at a gun show/ museum in the future If they still exist...

"Grandpa look!!! I found a Glock .......man, haven't seen one of those in years....you used to have one of those didn't you?"

Randy
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Old 01-05-2021, 04:09 PM
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I would say I'm collecting plastic pistols, buuuuttttt. If I can get a slide at a certain price from here and a frame for a certain place over there, and a quick email for some cheap factory internals, and I can put an entire gun together for say under 3 beans, ill put it together and just stick it in the truck or the garage... can't beat that at today's new prices...
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Old 01-05-2021, 04:10 PM
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As long as people collect postage stamps, I see no reason why polymer firearms would be off limits to collect.


I always thought that a guy could have a giant warehouse of AR 15's and not have one of every brand/variation available.

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Old 01-05-2021, 05:01 PM
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No, collecting plastic guns is fine though for some. Just know they will ALWAYS be worth a lot less than what you paid for them.
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Old 01-05-2021, 05:13 PM
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No, collecting plastic guns is fine though for some. Just know they will ALWAYS be worth a lot less than what you paid for them.
Simply not true. Next.
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Old 01-05-2021, 05:15 PM
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I collect what I like to shoot. Nothing more.

But if I had a crystal ball, now would be the perfect time to have a bunch of new and used plastic pistols to sell.
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Old 01-05-2021, 06:15 PM
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I am an old guy (67). When I was young, one could purchase obsolete military rifles at very low prices. Have you priced a nice M1 Garand recently?
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Old 01-05-2021, 08:59 PM
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Some folks collect stamps or postcards, other folks collect trading cards, some folks even collect bottle caps.

Folks collect all manner of things, I'm not about to question that folks collect polyer-framed pistols, nor do I think that there's anything strange about that either.

Fortunately, I overcame my biased against polymer-framed pistols a couple of years ago once I had shot my brother's Ruger LC9S, and now I own multiple polymer-framed pistols with another on the way as we speak. So you could say that I've got a little collection of my own going.
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:11 PM
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I don't buy guns as "investments", but I do shop around and with very few exceptions I make sure I pay less than market value for pretty much every one I buy.
That way I am pretty much certain to be able to get my money back and then some.
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
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No, collecting plastic guns is fine though for some. Just know they will ALWAYS be worth a lot less than what you paid for them.
Seen the price of polymer guns lately?
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:21 PM
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Plastic pistols have a life span of 40 years yet there’s no date of birth on the gun nor when it expires. As an investment does that worry you?
I think about those cheap foam filled shooting muffs. One day we’ll pick them up to find the foam discentergraded? Will that happen to the plastic pistol crumbled up like an old piece of tupperware?
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:41 PM
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Well, I've always bought high.
Then sold low.
And always traded down.

What was that line in the movie The Graduate?
Something about plastics.....

This whole Collectable Plastic Pistols angle....it does have a nice wring to it. I might just have to diversify by liquidating some of my carbon paper holdings.
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:52 PM
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Most guns aren't good investments, but there are some that buck that trend. For decades you could find milsurp junk for dirt cheap, then the surplus market dried up and now those guns are desirable. Those $100 SKS's are pushing $400 or more. The $250 Swiss K31 is now $500 or more. I think Glocks have cost about $500 for the last 30 years.

The key is to buy whatever is in low demand and cheap right now, but will be in high demand and low supply 10 to 20 years from now. I don't think many plastic guns will fit that description.

The problem is that the surplus market has dried up and nothing is very "cheap" today. The $200 Taurus will probably still be a $200 Taurus 10 years from now.

The high end market, $2,500+, could tank next year or it could take off and go even higher. Will gun buyers 10 or 20 years from now still be clamoring for the stuff Baby Boomers are willing to drop large amounts of money on?
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Old 01-05-2021, 11:08 PM
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The fact that an item was previously cheaper doesn't mean it's a good investment.

A pack of smokes used to be $.25 too. Now they're near $7.00. Doesn't mean you should have invested in a cigarette collection.

A number of posts here seem to be saying that because something has increased in price, that alone makes it a good investment. It doesn't. Specifically when everything is also increasing in price.

An item is only valued as an investment if it significantly outpaces inflation. So far, plastic pistols haven't. As an example, most WW2 arms took over 40 years before any significant price changes above inflation took place.

Just my $.02. YMMV, but I'll stick with firearms as an enjoyable pursuit and much more stable items/areas as investments. Especially if I wanted to see a return during the normal human life span.

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Old 01-06-2021, 08:50 AM
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Even the "rarest" Tupperware will never be in the same category as a nice steel revolver or 1911. Keeping a Glock in new, unfired condition hoping it will be a collectable someday is like buying a can opener and keeping it in the box hoping it will rise in value. Even examples like the fish gill Gen 3s and RTF2s will at best garner new Glock prices to those looking for one.
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Old 01-06-2021, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ματθιας View Post
I have a buddy who collects all things Glock. He has most if not all the models and variations within the models - no G18, though. He even manged to find both a G25 and a G28. With the exceptions of the G25, and G28, I believe most, if not all are NIB. He has the knives, tools and all sorts of promo stuff. To me, it is a pretty impressive collection!

I collected a bunch of military surplus firearms pre-2008. They were cheap and under $200. I collected them because I like(d) them. Now, I look at them as an investment.

Mosins (Russian) were $50, on sale 15-20 years ago. They were a dime a dozen. Even up until a few years ago, they could be had for ~$150. Now they seem to start at $400 and are going up. I think the most I paid for any milsurp was $350. Almost every single one of the milsurps I have is over $300, at least, looking at GB prices and stuff being sold on various websites.. Right now, I'm just sitting on them. I'll sell them, eventually...
How he get the Glock 25 and 28? Those are rarer in the US than a golden egg
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Old 01-06-2021, 10:04 AM
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Quote:
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Seen the price of polymer guns lately?
Yes, but there's still no value in collecting plastic guns unless they're given to you almost free, then there some value.
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Old 01-06-2021, 11:48 AM
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[quote=.357magger;141017862]
Quote:
"Combat Tupperware"
Now that's funny right there!!!!!
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Old 01-07-2021, 12:27 AM
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How he get the Glock 25 and 28? Those are rarer in the US than a golden egg
This is what I remember: One of them, he answered a newspaper advert that was a typo - pure luck. I don't remember how he found the other one. One was a beater, with scuffs and lots of wear, the other was in OK condition - I don't remember which was which. This was 12-15 or so years ago.
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Old 01-07-2021, 12:30 AM
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People collect all kinds of stupid items. Why not plastic guns?
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Old 01-07-2021, 09:17 AM
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Collecting is one thing, I'm all for people collecting what they like. However that's different than buying things and putting them away thinking they will be more valuable in the future. In that regard I don't see Tupperware ever rising in value over time beyond what you can buy the current version for. There may be a few outliers, but I can't think of any offhand. So I wouldn't deprive yourself the joy of shooting that rare Glock 19 with the $100 bill cerakote you've been holding onto.
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Old 01-07-2021, 10:21 AM
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Apparently a lot of people on this forum haven't seen what older Glocks are selling for right now. First generation Glock 17s are well into four figures. Early long barreled versions of the 17 can top $2K with the original box and accessories. And a very low serial numbered 17 with the original pencil barrel and black internals can easily hit the mid-four figure range.

Heck, even the second generation Glocks are starting to tick up in value.

The market demand is already there for these guns, and they've been steadily on the rise now for several years. I don't anticipate that abating anytime soon, especially with politics as they are right now.

Whether they're good investments or not is open to lots of debate, not the least of which is what constitutes a good investment. About 6 years ago I bought a very early 2nd gen Glock 17 (in the original box, with all of its papers and accessories) for $250. I shot the heck out of that gun but always took care of it. Last year I sold it to a collector for $600. By my math that works out to about 20% interest pear year on my investment (plus the added bonus of a lot of fun range time). I'm not complaining.

Mike
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Old 01-09-2021, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Onomea View Post
I have never bought a gun as an investment. I buy 'em just because I like 'em.
A gun salesman () told me that once you have one gun the "need" was met.

I don't "collect" but I have bought a few that made a "set" and my '57 K22 was purchased so I would have an example of the old skool S&W polish & bluing to fondle and shoot occasionally.

I live in Kalifornistan. Buying guns as "investments" is a fool's errand.
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Old 01-09-2021, 08:52 PM
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Cerakote tupperware with easy flake grey paint then slap a chevron on it and you will have folks standing in line waiting to join the legion at highly inflated prices.

Sounds crazy but I've seen this formula work.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
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Plastic pistols have a life span of 40 years
Where did you come up with that number?
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Old 01-09-2021, 10:06 PM
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I donít have a dedicated brand or type of firearm I collect. I buy what I like, regardless of brand/type. I have about 50 handguns now that range from Astra semi autos to Colt Pythons and everything in between.
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Old 01-09-2021, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
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Plastic pistols have a life span of 40 years yet thereís no date of birth on the gun nor when it expires.
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Originally Posted by Mister X View Post
Where did you come up with that number?
I was wondering the same. Glocks have already been around for 40 years I and I haven't ever heard of one disintegrating. AFAIK quality modern polymers don't have that problem and even the really old plastics that did were the cheap stuff without UV blockers in the mix that got UV damaged by being left out in the sun.

I've seen TONS of motorcycle fenders and such from the 1970's that have been exposed to sun/UV for 50 years that haven't crumbled. Naturally 99.99% of polymer guns aren't going to see that kind of abuse or UV exposure - even if they were susceptible to it - which they aren't...
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:18 AM
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I have a tendency to pick up guns that are a good deal. That being said. There guns im not attached to. Then when i find something i teally want i trade up. As far as plastic guns i have a few. I just picked up a USP tactical in .40. Price was right. As stated here same with rugers. Who knew they would be collectable 20yrs ago.
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mk70ss View Post
I donít have a dedicated brand or type of firearm I collect. I buy what I like, regardless of brand/type. I have about 50 handguns now that range from Astra semi autos to Colt Pythons and everything in between.
We must be brothers from different mothers. I have a Finnish Lahti, a British Webley, a Russian Nagant captured by the Finns, Colt 1911s, N frame Smith & Wesson and boatload of other things that caught my eye and I bought them intending to keep them.

Somebody at an auction house once told me that, "There's a [fanny] for every saddle."
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Old 01-10-2021, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
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Plastic pistols have a life span of 40 years yet thereís no date of birth on the gun nor when it expires. As an investment does that worry you?
I think about those cheap foam filled shooting muffs. One day weíll pick them up to find the foam discentergraded? Will that happen to the plastic pistol crumbled up like an old piece of tupperware?
After the end times the only thing that will be left on earth are roaches and Glocks.
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Old 01-10-2021, 11:10 AM
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After the end times the only thing that will be left on earth are roaches and Glocks.
Plus Griswold skillets and Pfaltzgraf dishes.
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