When a gun collector acquires a new piece it often needs cleaning, conservation or restoration. This can be as simple as cleaning the gun to remove corrosion, dirt and grease or it can include major actions like replacement of missing parts or reblueing. The goal of restoration is to restore the original appearance and functionality of a gun. To regain functionality the gun may need repair: replacing broken springs or correcting the „lockup” and alignment. For most collectors an antique gun has little value when it is not functional or unattractive to be displayed. Though „refurbishing” gives a good impression of how the gun originally looked most experts value "patina" that reflects its age.


Antique weapons often have had an eventful life leaving many traces. Improper repairs may have damaged screw heads; inadequate cleaning may have caused extensive corrosion. Before buying an antique gun it is advisable to determine its condition:

  • Is the gun complete? (Springs, extractor pin, lanyard ring, front sight etc.)
  • Is the „lockup” good? (After cocking a revolver a chamber in the cylinder must be locked in alignment with the barrel)
  • Check for rust and pitting! (Check barrel and cylinder; If possible remove the grips)
  • Are all springs in good condition? (Check the trigger spring!)
  • Are the screw heads damaged? (Worn screw heads are a clear sign of unprofessional repairs)
  • Are the grips in good condition (Check for woodworm and cracks)
  • Check the original finish (Blueing or nickel finish)
Preserve your newly purchased gun as quickly as possible with good gun oil!