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34th Edition of Blue Book of Gun Values: No Prices Listed for New AR Models

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April 02, 2013

34th Edition of Blue Book of Gun Values: No Prices Listed for New AR Models

By Phil Bourjaily

The always-awaited new edition of the Blue Book of Gun Values came out on April 1. The Blue Book, is, of course, the standard price reference for anyone buying or selling guns for one simple reason. “I am more thorough than anyone else,” says Steven P. Fjestad, the man behind the book. That is, in the words of Will Sonnet, no brag, just fact.

This year’s Blue Book runs 2,408 pages long and includes both values for countless guns in every condition from new-in-the-box to 60% as well as 80 pages of illustrations showing how to grade gun condition.

This year marks the 34th edition of the Blue Book, but it has not always been the single-source indispensible bible of all used gun prices. In the beginning, it was geared toward collectibles only, lever action rifles and that kind of thing. Then Fjestad went to SHOT Show, saw all the new guns and thought, “Why not list new and recently discontinued guns, too?” The book grew from there.

Compiling it gets harder with each new edition, he says, “It’s a race. We have to finish it in the same time every year, but the finish line gets farther and farther away.” The book is put out by a surprisingly small staff aided by contributing editors who specialize in certain collectible makes.

This year’s volatile AR-buying frenzy caused Fjestad to take the step of not listing prices for new ARs in the book, since any listing would be a mere snapshot of a continually changing market and would be immediately out of date. Instead, the book lists new prices as n/a and refers shoppers to the website, where the price guide is constantly updated with typical Blue Book thoroughness. On the site, you can find a guide to the latest price as well as prices of that model over the last 30 or 90 days.

Fifteen years ago, the Blue Book listed 23 AR-15 makers. Now there are 150. Fjestad is busy tracking down as much as he can learn about every one. “Some of these makers may not be around in a year or two, but the guns will be and people will want to know what they’re worth,” he says. “Good information never sleeps.”

 

Comments (6)

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from MICHMAN wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

Future blue books will sound like a credit card commercial......Personal and Home security - PRICELESS!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from W. Mathew Drumm wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

Perhaps they will provide a downloadable addendum which shows the prices of AR's and the cost of components (upper/lower receivers, etc.) before and after 12/14/2012, so gun buyers know who the most egregious price-gougers in the industry are and treat them accordingly.
the market/current costs for MSR's of all types, their parts, accessories and ammo is proof positive IMO that much of the hysteria/fear in the market is being driven by many of the manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers (Cheaper Than Dirt!) alike to maximize profits. This crap needs to stop, or they won't have to worry about the Dianne Feinsteins or the Harry Reids putting them out of business, they will do it to themselves.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tim Platt wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

A friend of mine just called to ask where he could buy ammo and I gave him the bad news. Then he started whining about selling his AR last year for $600. He asked me what I thought mine was worth and I had to ask, what's it worth to you? It's priceless right now, just like the book says.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

ARs nowadays hardly stay in their original factory form anyway.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from fieldgeneral wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

I just purchased on amazon-29.38 with free shipping. I buy one every few years-well worth it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

I see the scalpers on Amazon are asking a bit extra of the newest edition at this time. I have utilized this book as a resource for a long time. More recently, in the last 10-15 years, I often see employees at gun stores and gun shows thumbing through and studying the contents of a blue book prior to taking in a trade of a used gun. Sure makes it hard to cheat on a deal when everyone knows the facts.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from MICHMAN wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

Future blue books will sound like a credit card commercial......Personal and Home security - PRICELESS!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from W. Mathew Drumm wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

Perhaps they will provide a downloadable addendum which shows the prices of AR's and the cost of components (upper/lower receivers, etc.) before and after 12/14/2012, so gun buyers know who the most egregious price-gougers in the industry are and treat them accordingly.
the market/current costs for MSR's of all types, their parts, accessories and ammo is proof positive IMO that much of the hysteria/fear in the market is being driven by many of the manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers (Cheaper Than Dirt!) alike to maximize profits. This crap needs to stop, or they won't have to worry about the Dianne Feinsteins or the Harry Reids putting them out of business, they will do it to themselves.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tim Platt wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

A friend of mine just called to ask where he could buy ammo and I gave him the bad news. Then he started whining about selling his AR last year for $600. He asked me what I thought mine was worth and I had to ask, what's it worth to you? It's priceless right now, just like the book says.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

ARs nowadays hardly stay in their original factory form anyway.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from fieldgeneral wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

I just purchased on amazon-29.38 with free shipping. I buy one every few years-well worth it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 1 year 2 weeks ago

I see the scalpers on Amazon are asking a bit extra of the newest edition at this time. I have utilized this book as a resource for a long time. More recently, in the last 10-15 years, I often see employees at gun stores and gun shows thumbing through and studying the contents of a blue book prior to taking in a trade of a used gun. Sure makes it hard to cheat on a deal when everyone knows the facts.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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