Terminology used to describe a firearms condition.

How do we arrive at the statements used for the condition of a firearm?

This page has a list of terms we use to describe the condition of a firearm. Asset Marketing Pros-Trinity Auction Gallery based our requirements on the NRA standards. These are the word used to determine the shape of a gun, shotgun, pistol, revolver, or rifle for auction/sale. Here is a list of the terms and their meaning. We sincerely hope this will help you understand how we arrived at the condition stated. This standard is published on the NRA Museums website under Evaluating Firearms Condition by Jim Supica.

Terms used to describe the condition of a firearm.

Modern Firearm Condition Standards Terminology:

  • NEW: Not previously sold at retail, in the same condition as current factory production.
  • PERFECT / AS NEW: In NEW condition in every respect. The term AS NEW is also used to mean the same.
  • EXCELLENT: New condition, though used little with no noticeable marring of wood or metal. The bluing is perfect except at muzzle or sharp edges.
  • VERY GOOD: In perfect working condition. No wear seen on working surfaces, no corrosion or pitting.  But it could have minor surface dents or scratches.
  • GOOD: Is in safe working condition with minor wear on the functional surfaces. No broken parts or corrosion or pitting that will interfere with proper functioning.
  • FAIR: In safe working conditions but well worn. It may be required replacement of minor parts or adjustments, which should be in the statements. There is no rust but may have corrosion pits which do not render the firearm unsafe or inoperable.
  • PARTS: No longer an operable firearm as is.  Or it has missing components required for safe operation.  This type of weapon could be used by a gunsmith to fix or repair another gun.

Antique Firearm Condition Standards Terminology:

  • FACTORY NEW: All original parts. It has a 100% finish, in perfect condition in every respect inside and out.
  • EXCELLENT: All original parts, over 80% original. The finish has sharp lettering, numerals, and design on metal and wood. It also has unmarred wooden pieces with a fine bore.
  • FINE: All original parts. And over 30% original finish, sharp lettering, numerals, and design on metal and wood.  Some minor marks in wood with a good bore.
  • VERY GOOD: All original parts with little or up to 30% original finish. So the original metal surfaces are smooth with all edges sharp. It has clear lettering, numerals, and design on the metal. The wood is slightly scratched or bruised. Collectors do not consider the bore as this is not a collector item.
  • GOOD: Some minor replacement parts, metal smoothly rusted or lightly pitted in places, cleaned or re-blued. Principal letters, numerals, and design on metal are legible. Wood refinished, scratched or bruised or minor cracks repaired in good working order.
  • FAIR: Some significant parts are not original or have been replaced, and some minor replacement parts may be required. The metal is rusted, maybe lightly pitted all over, vigorously cleaned or re-blued. There may be rounded edges on the metal or wood. The principal lettering, numerals, and design on metal partly obliterated. Some wood scratches, bruises, cracks, or been repaired where broken. In fair working order or can be easily fixed to be placed in working order.
  • POOR: Major and minor parts replaced.  Major replacements parts required and extensive restoration needed. The metal is deeply pitted. The principal lettering, numerals, and design are obliterated.  Wood is badly scratched, bruised, cracked, or broken. It is mechanically inoperative and generally undesirable as a collector’s firearm.  Also known as a “Wall Hanger,” typically used for decorative purposes only.

Want more information?

For a more in-depth article regarding conditions, please refer to the following page on the NRA Museums Website: Evaluating Firearms Condition by Jim Supica.  NRA Museums Page

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