BUY IN GOOD CONDITION
"The three attributes you need to assess when considering a vintage gun are quality, condition and maker. Ideally you want to find a gun that has lived a sheltered life with very few miles on the clock. Sure, you can fix and replace knackered parts, but it is never as valuable as the original, untouched version. It is a false economy to buy a flashy gun in poor condition that needs a lot of restoration."
– Gavin Gardiner, founder, Gavin Gardiner Ltd
STICK TO TRADITION
"Be aware of fashions, but stick to original, unaltered design features. For instance, if you’re opting for a side-by-side shotgun, choose a double trigger. Don’t be snooty about the humble boxlock – I’d opt for a showy boxlock over a decaying sidelock any day. Whatever your firearm, pick top grade wood and a well-known engraver. You want your gun to have global appeal."
Bill Harriman, firearms expert, Antiques Roadshow
GET SOME USE OUT OF THEM
"While it’s not recommended to regularly take unique, antique or collectible guns to the firing range or grouse moor, a gun will not lose its value if it is well looked after. Guns are a surefire way of getting bang for your buck."
– Gavin Gardiner
Interviews by Selena Barr, Tweed Media; tweed-media.com