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Old 11-14-2017, 04:06 PM   #1
ZZANG1847
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Default Please tell me this is simply overpriced and I shouldn't buy it



I was at the shop that I go at least once a week, and before leaving I decided to look at consignment corner and saw this guy. It was right next to Erfurt Luger P08($1200) and Walther P38($800) in an average condition so I thought it was going to be another overpriced, okay looking gun that would be sitting there for a while. However, with a "wooden holster" tag I decided to check it out, and this is what I've got so far:

1. The pistol is in MINT condition. I don't know if it's been fired but there is no scratch/ding on the outside, and I rate it 99% easily.

2. It's made by Mauser, and it's in 9mm parabellum/luger.

3. The gun comes with a wooden stock, and it has holster that contains extra spring for magazine, cleaning rod, and 3 clips.
(I don't know how to figure out if stock/holster is authenthic, but with gun in such mint condition I wouldn't be surprised if they are original)

4. Gun is in consignment, and WA tax makes it $1320 OTD.

I saw a lot of people saying that I should look up completed Gunbroker auction listings to see what is the average price for the gun I'm looking for, and C96 with a wooden stock seems to be priced all over the map, depending on condition, when it's made, and what it comes with. My gut feeling tells me this is one of the deals that I would be kicking myself forever if I don't grab it (like $400 Ithaca 37 DSPS or $275 K-31 that I foolishly missed), but I'm not a walking C96 encyclopedia so I would like to ask you guys about it.

If you were at the shop and saw the gun, and had money for it, would you buy this?
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:11 PM   #2
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With that one picture at an angle with low light....BUY IT
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:13 PM   #3
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Just buy it. You know you want to. Low ball it.
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:21 PM   #4
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If I ever came upon a broomhandle that nice for $1200 it would be walking out the door with me. Would try to haggle first of course, but I wouldn't let a 'no' on that account stop me.
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:43 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raggedwhole! View Post
Just buy it. You know you want to. Low ball it.
It's in consignment so I would need to call the owner and ask the permission.
And.... given the condition he would probably tell me to go F^%K myself.
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZZANG1847 View Post
It's in consignment so I would need to call the owner and ask the permission.
And.... given the condition he would probably tell me to go F^%K myself.
A confirmed "go F^%K yourself" beats a lifetime of wondering if . . .
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZZANG1847 View Post
It's in consignment so I would need to call the owner and ask the permission.
And.... given the condition he would probably tell me to go F^%K myself.
Could be (most likely) reblued, replacement grips, modern grip screw, could have pitting, missing parts, and the list goes on.

You all are putting the cart before the mule here.
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stopsign32v View Post
Could be (most likely) reblued, replacement grips, modern grip screw, could have pitting, missing parts, and the list goes on.

You all are putting the cart before the mule here.
Is there a way to figure out whether the gun actually has reblued finish, replacement grips, modern grip screws, and so forth? You said this gun is most likely the case, and I would like to know how you managed to figure that out by looking at the one photo.

I have zero knowledge of how to take apart C96 to look inside so if someone sold me a gun with few missing parts that is somehow capable of cocking the hammer and dry firing, I would be easily fooled.
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by ZZANG1847 View Post
Is there a way to figure out whether the gun actually has reblued finish, replacement grips, modern grip screws, and so forth? You said this gun is most likely the case, and I would like to know how you managed to figure that out by looking at the one photo.

I have zero knowledge of how to take apart C96 to look inside so if someone sold me a gun with few missing parts that is somehow capable of cocking the hammer and dry firing, I would be easily fooled.
Screw is silver and shiny (they didn't come that way), grip looks more brown than anything (almost walnut, they didn't come that way), rebluing would be much harder to tell but the condition of it for it's age combined with the grip screw and grips leads me to believe......drum roll please......reblued at some point.

But heck lets assume all is original! Where is the lanyard ring?
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:35 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Stopsign32v View Post
Screw is silver and shiny (they didn't come that way), grip looks more brown than anything (almost walnut, they didn't come that way), rebluing would be much harder to tell but the condition of it for it's age combined with the grip screw and grips leads me to believe......drum roll please......reblued at some point.

But heck lets assume all is original! Where is the lanyard ring?
I did some image search on Google based on what you just mentioned, and it looks like they are indeed not original. Well I guess it is safe to assume at this point that both shoulder stock and holster aren't going to be original/authenthic at all either.

So, if the gun is indeed reblued, parts are not numbers matching and changed, what would be the fair price for the gun then? I don't think the owner will simply drop the price in half if I tell him what you've just taught me, but with that info I could try to entertain the price to a more "reasonable" range.

If you need to take a closer look at the gun, just let me know and I will take more photos when I go back to the shop tomorrow.
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:38 PM   #11
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I would start by asking the owner about the gun and how original it is. If he is truthful then you will have your answers. If he isn't I would walk away.

Look at the gun as 0 collector value and it being a shooter only.
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:55 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Stopsign32v View Post
I would start by asking the owner about the gun and how original it is. If he is truthful then you will have your answers. If he isn't I would walk away.

Look at the gun as 0 collector value and it being a shooter only.
It's sad to hear that original Mauser C96 doesn't have a collector value anymore because of things the owner did it to make it more prettier.
I will see if I can drop by tomorrow and ask the shop owner if I can reach the seller and talk to him about it.

Thank you for helping me with this. You might have just saved me a whole lot of trouble and money.
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:58 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZZANG1847 View Post
It's sad to hear that original Mauser C96 doesn't have a collector value anymore because of things the owner did it to make it more prettier.
I will see if I can drop by tomorrow and ask the shop owner if I can reach the seller and talk to him about it.

Thank you for helping me with this. You might have just saved me a whole lot of trouble and money.
The original owner of that C96 is long dead.

But yes, I get what you are saying. In military firearms collecting there are two rules to think of when value comes into play, and in this order.

1) How original it is
2) Condition

Don't write off the gun yet. Look at it, get pictures of any markings that are on it. THEN talk to the owner or ask questions to the pawn shop owner to ask the owner, or however that crap works. Come back with what you find.
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Old 11-15-2017, 11:34 AM   #14
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It is most probably refinished, but even at that it is not too far off on the price if you include the extras. It does have the longer barrel so I would guess that it is one that was made prior to WWI and wasn't in those sent to China.

I can tell you that originals with matching shoulder stocks and the leather carry rig sell for FAR more than $1200. If the leather is original it will be 100 years old and no matter how well it has been kept, it will show it's age. Without seeing it, I would assume that not only is the gun refinished, but the shoulder stock and leather carry rig are going to be repops.

Pictures of what an original set will look like:




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Old 11-15-2017, 03:13 PM   #15
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So... I went back to shop today and took these photos (after getting a permission from the gun shop owner, of course).
I compressed the photos so it may not be in the best quality possible, but it should be enough to judge the overall condition of pistol.



























Apparently pistol actually comes with 2 holsters instead of just 1, which was a nice surprise. Just like what you guys predicted, however, both holsters and stock must be reproduction, as it's in way too good condition for something that is either almost or more than 100 years old. And there are brass marks and wears inside the pistol, so it's been fired over the years.

I took photos in areas where there is a serial number, and it looks like lower/upper frame of the pistol has matching serial numbers but other parts such as hammer, hammer housing(?) has different numbers.

I was going to call the owner and ask 1) if the pistol was refinished while he owned it, 2) what happened to original grip and screws, as they're definitely not original, 3) if the pistol is fully functional, 4) if the stock is original (I know it's not but just wanted to ask to see if he's truthful or not), and 4) if he is willing to lower the price (I looked at past Gunbroker auction listings and decided fair price would be between $900 and $1,000). However, since I can't get the phone number from the gun shop due to privacy reasons, I asked the gun shop owner if I could leave some note and he could ask questions later.

I told him that I will come back on Friday, so by that time we will see whether all the questions are answered.

So, what do you guys think? Let me know what you think of the pistol and if the pistol is worth the price (between $900 to $1,200, of course).

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Old 11-15-2017, 04:10 PM   #16
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Sure looks like a bad refinish to me.
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Old 11-15-2017, 04:41 PM   #17
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told you
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Old 11-15-2017, 04:48 PM   #18
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Repo stock and holster, refinished pistol, badly refinished. Zero collector value, it is only a shooter, if it works. I just bought a correct 1905 C96, mostly matching, with original bluing fading to grey brown for $1200, it will be my original condition shooter. Personally I would not buy that refinished C96, not at $1200, maybe $650 -$800 , more likely not at all, I would rather have an original condition C96 then one that has been so monkeyed with.

To me the serial number on the frame looks fishy for a C96, almost like somebody tried to wipe the old and matched the upper serial number. I would have to see it in person to tell, but it doesn't look right, the font looks too large and it is sloppy
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Old 11-15-2017, 05:40 PM   #19
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Personally I would not buy that refinished C96, not at $1200, maybe $650 -$800 , more likely not at all, I would rather have an original condition C96 then one that has been so monkeyed with.
IF the owner actually says he will take w/ 800 + tax offer I would grab it even if it's a hodgepodge gun that's been bubba'ed terribly. Because of the condition, I wouldn't feel bad shooting the crap out of it and probably be able to collect my money if I decide to sell it on local Armslist later. However, I don't think the owner will let me walk with that price tag, let alone budge with my suggestion around $900.

Maybe I should take photos of a Luger P08 and Walther P38 they had in store when I return on Friday and ask you whether it's worth the money.
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Old 11-15-2017, 06:46 PM   #20
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That "9mm Parabellum" engraving on the bbl sure looks like the old Federal Ordnance rebuilds they sold back in the day. If it functions, it's a shooter not a collector. One of the few affordable C96s out there.

http://www.bluebookofgunvalues.com/G...TOLS_SEMI_AUTO
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Old 11-15-2017, 07:11 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZZANG1847 View Post
IF the owner actually says he will take w/ 800 + tax offer I would grab it even if it's a hodgepodge gun that's been bubba'ed terribly. Because of the condition, I wouldn't feel bad shooting the crap out of it and probably be able to collect my money if I decide to sell it on local Armslist later. However, I don't think the owner will let me walk with that price tag, let alone budge with my suggestion around $900.

Maybe I should take photos of a Luger P08 and Walther P38 they had in store when I return on Friday and ask you whether it's worth the money.
The stock rig and holster is worth $150-200, so if you could get the whole set for $900, you might have a decent shooter, or not, no way of telling until you get it to a range, most likely it was originally a 7.63 gun, sometimes the modern conversions to 9mm worked and sometimes they didnít. C96ís are a lot of fun to shoot, I have had serveral shooters over the years. The value on C96ís is high, there is not a lot to pick from, I know. There are very good condition original guns with a high price tag, you can find those fairly easy, itís just that you need to bring a lot of cash with you, then there are the nice original guns in shooter/collector condition, harder to find and in the $1200-$2000 range, then there are the well worn, stored in an open warehouse in China for 60 yearís imports from the 90ís that people think are great guns and they want entirely too much money for and then there are the refurbs, they have absolutely zero collector value and should be valued as shooters only. They really will never appreciate in value, original condition C96ís will. I agree, prices on Broomhandles are all over the place, it pays to do a lot of research before you buy.
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Old 11-15-2017, 11:25 PM   #22
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Looks too nice to be anything but a knockoff repro especially at that price.

I wouldn’t go over $800 personally.
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Old 11-16-2017, 05:29 AM   #23
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Based on what I see in the pictures it appears the original barrel was cut off and a replacement was fitted.
That is not unusual on guns that came out of China and were rebuilt here.
That explains the caliber, longer barrel and the lack of import mark (it was on the original barrel)
There were so many (poor condition, shot out) C96 Bolo's available from China that Navy Arms, Fed Ord, Oyster bay, Etc. started rebuilding them here for commercial sales.
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Old 11-16-2017, 10:01 AM   #24
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"This is simply overpriced and you shouldn't buy it."
But if can be reasonably sure that it shoots, and have the money, I'd buy it for <$1000.
I've always wanted one in 9mm to shoot every now and again though.
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Old 11-16-2017, 01:37 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sledge303 View Post
Based on what I see in the pictures it appears the original barrel was cut off and a replacement was fitted.
That is not unusual on guns that came out of China and were rebuilt here.
That explains the caliber, longer barrel and the lack of import mark (it was on the original barrel)
There were so many (poor condition, shot out) C96 Bolo's available from China that Navy Arms, Fed Ord, Oyster bay, Etc. started rebuilding them here for commercial sales.
yup, re-bbled,,,wouldn't the original grips have a red 9 on them if it were original?
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Old 11-16-2017, 09:28 PM   #26
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The ring on the barrel was the first tip-off, rebarreled.

9mm, C96 broom handle rear sight only go to 500m, second tip-off.

It's a shooter.
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