Just recently a few local gun guys and I were discussing the worst parts of buying, selling, and trading firearms. This mostly has to do with using Armslist. Armslist is a site I love, and appreciate. The people presented have nothing to do with the platform itself. It’s more of a reflection on gun culture than Armslist. Shortly after our discussion I ended up on another one on Reddit, but it encapsulated cell phones, computers, tvs, guns, cars and pretty much everything on internet buy, trade, and sell groups like Craigslist. Then out of nowhere, the Firearms Blog did a post of something similar here. So I figured I’d throw my hat into the ring, with the Five Weird People on Armslist.
Lowest Price guy / Lowest trade
This one was the subject of the Firearm Blog’s post. The guy that starts a negotiation off with, what’s the lowest you’ll take for the gun?
If you are one of these people stop. Regardless of what gun I put on Armslist I always get this kind of email. “What the lowest you’ll take?” I generally take one of three routes depending on my mood.
- I increase my price. So if I want 500, I want 525 from them
- I ignore them outright, until they email me twice.
- I explain to them I don’t negotiate from the bottom, and they can make an offer, but I don’t haggle against myself. (This is when I’m feeling nice.)
One I feel Patrick R. left off is the low trade guy. Let’s use the Glock as a measuring stick. I put a Glock 19 up for a reasonable price and wait. I get at least one or two ridiculous trade offers. Often someone asking if I’ll trade my Glock 19 for a pot metal junk gun, like a Lorcin, an old German Rohm Revolver. Or I put up a nice SIG P226, and someone offer a Taurus PT111. I’m not hating on Taurus, but they are nowhere equal in value.
Weird trade guy
This guy is always amusing. Low trade guy is a pain, but weird trade guy is always worth a laugh. I have a 9mm AR up for Sale/Trade on Armslist. I’ve received the following offers on it so far.
- Mercedes rims. This must be a shot in the dark for the guy to just hope I own a Mercedes and need rims for it.
- Taxidermy. That’s actually all the guys email said. Taxidermy? I didn’t eve know what to reply, so I just said what? He emailed me pictures of various deer, bears, and many more.
- A John Boat. No trailer, no motor, and sitting in a junkyard.
- A Parachute and rigging, no pack. (Apparently parachutes are expensive, but I don’t jump.)
- Pitbulls and Pythons. I don’t want your puppy or snake, sorry. When a guy offered me a Python I honestly thought Colt and was seriously disappointed when it is was a real python.
Don’t know a thing about guns guy
This guy I don’t really dislike, but I find amusing on various levels. Some people have legitimate questions and I actually really enjoy informing them of firearms laws and technical info. However, sometimes the questions and assumptions are a bit odd.
Is it full auto? Or alternatively can I turn into full auto? – This one pops up every now and then, and happens more when selling guns on non gun for sale forums. This only applies when selling something scary looking. Like a MAC style pistol.
“I’ll trade you an FN FAL for it.” Guy proceeds to send me a picture of a G3/HK91 clone.
“How many does it hold.” I saw this on a listing for a double barrel shotgun back when Facebook allowed gun sales. Guy was serious and got mad when people thought he was joking. Maybe he confused a Coach gun for the DP-12?
The ‘custom’ Mosin guy
This guy is a plague. He’s bought a stock Mosin, hopefully a run of the mill round receiver, nothing special, and he’s butchered it. He’s attached more crap than one would imaginable to a design that’s over a century old. There is a plastic stock on it, a forward mounted scout scope, and a muzzle break that is held on with a series of pins, not threaded.
He’s done all this and thinks he’s 200 dollar gun is now worth a grand or close to it. The best way to handle this guy is too just leave him alone. You can’t talk sense into him. Just say no thank you, and don’t bother.
The only exception to this rule is an ex Sniper turned back into a sniper. What I mean by that is an actual PU scope, or a quality replica. These can often be nice little pieces that someone probably put love and time into. No junk hanging off the sides, and its plastic free.
Armslist Scam artists
You do not have to register to use Armslist ,and there is no way to track users and feedback. This ends in a lot of scammer posting ads similar to Craigslist scams. They often involve you sending a gun and receiving a fake money order, or you sending a money order and never receiving your weapon.
I always meet face to face with an Armslist seller, and I do so in a safe area, often in front of a police station. Surefire signs it’s a scam.
- Terrible spelling
- Deal too good to be true
- A seller more than willing to ship, and in fact will only ship.
- Run a reverse image search through Google and see what turns up. Same image on several posts? Probably a scam.
Always be cautious when dealing with Armslist.