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Matthew D M




Location: SouthEast Texas
Joined: 04 Aug 2004

Posts: 63

PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 7:59 am    Post subject: How do you price antiques?         Reply with quote

I am interested in purchasing antique western weapons, but have been scared to peruse the market due to an inability to price pieces. Can anyone refer me to perhaps a website, book, or other publication on how to price antiques (what to look for /expect when antique hunting, what type of pricing average, why a piece is more valuable than another, etc)?
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 8:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Matthew,
I recommend browsing the Lyle and Miller's antiques price guides at your local bookstore, as each features a small section devoted to arms and armor. I also recommend browsing dealers' websites. A few that come to mind are www.antiqueswords.com, www.faganarms.com, and www.michaeldlong.com, as well as searching for swords on www.antiqnet.com. A great book on British Military swords and their prices is available on www.britishmilitaryswords.co.uk (he also has a soon-to-be-released book on world swords).

The dealer sites I listed above can vary in price, but it will be good to learn to be able to determine who is more or less expensive.

Jonathan

P.S. Here is a afterthought or two: Miller's has a book entitled Understanding Antiques that might be useful in understanding how age, condition, country of origin, etc. affect prices. There is also a book out there called A Collector's Guide to Swords, Daggers, and Cutlasses . While it is not a well loved book (per the reviews on amazon), there is a section devoted to identifying fakes and other things to look for when purchasing a sword.

Good luck!
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Matthew D M




Location: SouthEast Texas
Joined: 04 Aug 2004

Posts: 63

PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 9:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Excellent my man! Thank you very much.
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 10:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My pleasure, Matthew. If am not sure of the time period in which you are interested, but anyone can benefit from visiting www.peterfiner.com. His inventory is very high-end, museum quality arms and armor. I highly recommend investing in at least one of his catalogs at some point. They are immaculate!

Jonathan

P.S. What can I say, i like P.S.'s....Prices are not listed on his site or in his catalog (you must call to ask), so that should tell you something!
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Matthew D M




Location: SouthEast Texas
Joined: 04 Aug 2004

Posts: 63

PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 10:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Eek!

I just teed myself looking at that 1520 German hand&1/2!

Holy Moly!!!!!!!!!!

PS-site really doesn't work well in Mozilla Firefox.
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 10:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I use Mozilla Firefox at work, and yes, the site is quite tiny! Explorer should do the trick.

Jonathan
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Don Stanko




Location: ohio
Joined: 27 Apr 2004
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 478 books

Posts: 233

PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 11:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello Matthew. I can understand your concern about guessing on the value of antique swords and armour, they can be quite costly. One bad decision can taint your viewpoint for quite a while. I am still cautious with excavated sword for that very reason. The fact is, if you purchase an item for fair market value, you should see an increase in value equal to about 5 - 25% per year. It is possible for items to decrease in value though, wheel-lock guns are a prime example. Better quality items increase in value faster than lesser examples and swords generally outpace polearms and impact weapons. To find an approximate value on an item I would not consider Peter Finers website, his items are generally priced extremely high - but there is a reason for this. First, his items are usually of the highest quality and second you are paying for his expertise in the field. Being one of the leading authorities in a subject matter has its privileges. Instead, I would check out websites like Sothebys (I believe their arms and armour section is now run by Thomas Del Mar), Christies, Hermann Historica, or Czerny's. Keep in mind, you must add 20% to the final price because of the buyers premium. Many of these sites have previous auction lists available and this can be a good resource for predicting appreciation values too.
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 11:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Good advice, Dan. I was not advocating for Matthew to use Peter Finer as a reference for prices, but rather to expose him to some of the finest quality antique weapons available.

Matthew, out of curiosity, what are you looking for in a sword regarding age, country of origin, etc. ?
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Matthew D M




Location: SouthEast Texas
Joined: 04 Aug 2004

Posts: 63

PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 11:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm just interested in learning about antiques market really.

If I had to put a time frame and/or geographic location on my interest, I'd say Renaissance Europe (German, Swiss, and Eastern Europe) and Colonial America. The 1520s German Hand-and-a-half is BEAUTIFUL on the Fines site.

I'd also love to own a Blucher Sabre as well.

I really like looking and learning for the most part. These guns (especially the eastern ones) are quite interesting-

http://www.antiqueswords.com/Topic%20Pages/Fi...illery.htm
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2006 11:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There is currently a thread on Peter Finer. I recommend you check it out because many of the items in the link are not on the Peter Finer website.

The Eastern firearms are interesting and exotic (and as a side note, Eastern firearms influenced the appearance of the weapons of the Sandpeople in the Star Wars movies).

Jonathan
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