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Posted: 5/25/2002 3:45:29 AM EST
Based on all the stories of regret one hears stemming from personal sales of firearms, I've so far managed to hang onto every gun I've purchased so far despite some urges to sell. However, after much deliberation, I think I've finally decided to sell one off (to be replaced by another, of course!) and was curious as to the general rules/etiquitte of an inspection period when buying sight unseen.
Obviously, you want something fair to both parties, as buying something without even seeing it is somewhat of a risk to the buyer. However, I guess my main question is does such an inspection period where the seller allows to buyer to return the firearm usually allow shooting of the gun or just visual inspection and maybe a trip to a qualified smith for a checkup?
Obviously, you can't really tell how a firearm (especially used) will perform until you've actually shot it. However, it seems that allowing this puts the seller more at risk. What happens if the buyer decides to shoot some of his new reloads in it damages the gun? Unless the buyer is particularly honest, he's probably not going to admit to shooting reloads and will blame it on the gun. What if the buyer's "test" consists of running a case of ammo through it, causing more wear and tear, that while it may not be visble after a good cleaning is none the less there?
I am fully confident in my gun to perform as advertised, and if the buyer just plain decides he doesn't like it after a couple of days, I'd have no problem taking it back as long as it it received back in the same condition, but as I said, it seems to put the seller at a pretty decent risk. What if there is a disagreement on "like" condition, for example? If the buyer bangs it up and sends it back, seems like the seller is the one who loses out. If they dont' send back the cash, they'll likely find themselves in a legal battle in which it would be difficult to prove the condition of the firearm before and after.
After all, most gun shops have an "all sales final" policy - of course you can visually inspect the gun, but generally not fire it unless they have a range on premesis.
So... just curious as to other's thoughts on this.
I have successfully completed a number of transfers via the Internet. First I photographed my firearm(s), recorded all serial numbers and listed all accessories, then, I notified the buyer of what I was doing and why. Then I requested that the buyer agree to provide either written or e-mail verification of receipt of shipment. The buyer had to agree to a 'x -day' inspection privilege with either party having the option to return either the gun(s) or money and no questions asked. Upon shipping the gun(s) the buyer was provided with a UPS tracking number to confirm and track shipment. Each gun was insured for more than its book value at a higher premium cost. Upon each parties receipt of either money or gun(s) either party could waive their inpsection/return period and the deal was done. NO test firing was allowed although gunsmith inspection was OK. But, the 'x-day' inspection period (buyers or sellers remorse) still applied. Funds were provided by either personal check or cashiers check. Money orders are OK but they take much longer to collect if problems arise and the local DA will refer you to the vendor (i.e. US post Office). No problems so far but everybody knew what was going on at each step. I have an advantage as I am a gunsmith/armorer. Good luck. JarheadGunner.
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