Parker Shotgun Value
One of the many questions collectors are asked, is what is the value of my grand fathers old Parker Shotgun? One rule you want to remember is, old does not mean it is valuable. The shotgun in your grandfather’s time was usually a tool to bring home meat. Therefore, the condition of the shotgun reflects the use it had, and in collecting condition is one of the three main considerations in creating the value. The three points are:
• Grade, gauge and extras: This is the easiest to explain, as a rule the higher the grade the more valuable the Parker. This may not hold true though if you have V or grade 1 in a 20 gauge in comparison to a higher-grade 12 gauge, the smaller gauges always command premium and price guides add from 25% to 200% depending on the gauge. Extras also increase the value: Vent Rib, Single Trigger, Beaver Tail Forend, ejectors and the list goes on. There is still an aversion to Damascus Barrels and though articles have been written to show Parker Damascus barrels are safe, the shooting public is leery and they generally command considerably less than steel barrels.
• Is it original: The most common restorations made to shotguns are: rebluing the barrels, cutting the stock for a pad or modifying the stock, polishing the bores or taking out the chokes and worst of all cutting the barrel to make a skeet or grouse gun. The common problem with rebluing is often all the marking are ground off or the barrel is filed down to make it unsafe as the walls are to thin, also the barrels are hot blued not rust blued. Many early Parkers could be ordered with a butt pad instead of the butt plate, what we see though, most cut stocks have new generic pads you can buy over the counter. A gunsmith with expertise in quality doubles can correct most of this work. Nothing can be done though to restore the value of cut barrels or thin barrel walls.
• What constitutes condition: My favorite saying on condition is, who wants to be caught hunting with an ugly gun. Condition usually plays an important part in the eye appeal of a nice Parker. In setting a value to a shooter a Parker that shows use but not abuse will command a good value. To an ardent collector this Parker will not fit into his collection and he will pass on it. The areas of condition are % of case coloring on the action, % of bluing on the barrels, condition of the bores and condition of the stock. Overall condition is based on all parts of the Parker not just it has a nice stock. Remember condition, condition and condition help establish the Parker value
This article was written to help you establish a value on your Parker, also, so you can understand what the person is looking for in setting a price. You should always consult a knowledgeable person to clarify the overall condition of your Parker. There are a number of good reference books on condition and value that are available in bookstores, most gun traders use these books as a guideline in establishing the value. For more information please call me. I do not charge for this service as this is MY HOBBY. My goal is to help people ascertain the value. I tell clients I was helped by many collectors and this is how I try to repay them for the time they spent with helping me learn about SXS.