Where do the prices come from?

Discussion in 'Double Rifles' started by timbear, Aug 18, 2011.

  1. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    I just found this ad on an Australian used gun site;
    "1985 build Holland & Holland Sesquicentennial Royal model, double rifle in 458 Win Mag. Left hand cheek piece, straight stock, shoot from either shoulder perfectly. Excellent condition".
    The asking price is AUD 75000.- (USD 77550.-)! Calling the shop in disbelief, I asked if that was a typo. They said it wasn't, and that the replacement value today would be AUD 250000!!! How does anyone justify asking the price of a good four bedroom house for a rifle? Don't get me wrong, the rifle is a beauty, fine wood, lovely engraving etc, but it still at heart is just a shooting iron. Does the buffalo really care whether he succumbs to a $250000 H&H Royal or my $1700 CZ 550? And are they employing 200 of Santa's elves to handcraft every tiny screw? Or is it just a case of "We ask what we can get for it", rather than what it is worth? I just can not get my head around it. The number of safaris I could go on if I had that sort of money ...
     
  2. Red Leg

    Red Leg GOLD SUPPORTER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    The sad truth is that H&H isn't marketing a bespoke Royal to you and me. They are marketing to someone who wants the best gun that money can buy regardless of cost. That is a relatively small clientele, and the majority of them are not counting their pennies. Is such a rifle worth that sort of money? To me, no, but if money were not an object? Maybe.

    I have a William Evans paradox and a Stephen Grant sidekick. A Remington 870 pump slug gun would be just as effective and magnitudes cheaper than the Evans. Would I enjoy it as much? Absolutely not. I have a Browning A5 which will break clays, but does it bring as much joy as my Grant? Absolutely not.

    I suspect all of us make similar value judgements - just a function of proportion.
     
  3. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Using your thought you would be the second car driver...

    Same could be said for cars...a Royal Royce or one made in India selling for less than...$1,000...both will get you there...

     
  4. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    I guess you are right. It is a matter of what is important to oneself. For me the rifle (or the car, never bought a new one in my life) is a tool. It is the hunt (or the journey's destination) that I care about.
     
  5. johnfox

    johnfox AH Senior Member

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  6. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    Which brings me back to my original question: Why? All needling aside, I really would like to know.
     
  7. johnfox

    johnfox AH Senior Member

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    Because they can.
    There will always be the seriously wealthy to whom price is no object and accordingly there will be purveyors of goods and services to meet their demands.
     
  8. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    Supply and demand. Assuming someone will pay for it then it is worth what is asked. These rifles are not dropping out of trees. People want them, the market finds a meeting place.

    It is like a Ferrari, hand built, does one thing really well, looks sensational and is rare. If they were A$2K I'd buy it if that greedy johnfox bastard didn't get to it first. Everyone would buy one but there aren't thousands of them anywhere, there is this one and very few others for sale.

    If you have to ask how much ? you can't afford it.
     
  9. classicsafari

    classicsafari AH Enthusiast

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    For the prospective owner, that question is not an issue , nor do they have to justify it. Also they can go on as many Safari as they want. Lets not even get into "prices of their type of Safari"
    If I had that type of money Id own several of the classic Doubles.
     
  10. Nyati

    Nyati AH Legend

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    Why the price....... exclusivity.

    As with many luxury items, the owner has something that few people can afford.

    Does it make sense ? Not to me !
     
  11. johnfox

    johnfox AH Senior Member

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    John, you would just look like a wealthy but sad old man in a Ferrari.:D

    Me, on the other hand, well I don't think I could get into a Ferrari and if I did I wouldn't be able to get out........you'd have to bury me in it!!
     
  12. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    I reckon the two of us should try to get into a Ferrari John. We would set a record mate. :)
     
  13. DUGABOY1

    DUGABOY1 CONTRIBUTOR AH Enthusiast

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    WHERE DO THE PRICES COME FROM?


    Well there is nothing new about high prices for exclusive items! There will always be things that you and I can't afford, but that has nothing to do with the quality of those items!

    Things like H&H double rifles, shotguns, and bolt rifles are made for the market ruled by folks who don't have to ask the price! Those prices have nothing to do with the actual working quality of the rifle it's self, but the fact that so few own them, and so many can't own them, and if you think H&H has a high price you need to look at Purdey double rifles!

    In any event, unless you are a billionaire , buy what you can afford, and stay out of the H&H store. I know some of you will say this is sour grapes, but the fact is I have never liked H&H double rifles, and there are several double rifles in the 10K to 20K price range I would rather have even if H&H doubles were the same price. :)
     
  14. big tex

    big tex New Member

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    Life is full about choices. Some people spend on cars, some on jewerly, some on rifles.

    Can't say for sure why they cost as much as they do but only you can decide if it is worth it. I would bet most of the people buying really high end doubles never take them out of the safe except to show their friends.
     
  15. Second Wind

    Second Wind AH Enthusiast

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    Brother Timbear,

    I am going to fix this for you and I promise you will sleep better after reading it;

    F. Scott Fitzgerald said it best. "The rich, they are different"

    If you have ever been around many truly wealthy people, and I am not talking about paper or real estate rich, I am talking about those individuals engaged in some activity that provides a personal cash feedstock in at least the mid six figures and is so structured as to assure its continuation in perpetuity.

    Now, after that being said, those individuals are also surrounded by a plethora of tax attorneys, accountants and managers and as such become somewhat insulated. If you are grossing 250,000 and go firearm shopping, when you see something that you want that costs 2,500 its not felt, 5,000 maybe, 10,000 you think about it and 25,000 it makes you a little nervous.

    If you are say, a hedge fund manager and your base salary is 500,000 and your bonus is 17 mil. then your gun shopping takes on a completely different complexion

    and, at that point your wife, girlfriend or significant other is toting a 6,000 Gucci bag and sporting 1,500 balalaika shoes that match her 4,000 Escada sundress (which will be a dust rag by the end of October)

    So it all gets real relative (because you are probably supporting her widowed mother as well)

    The point here is, don't get caught up in it. You can hunt all of Africa with no more than 4 rifles and all of North America and Europe with 4 more, 4 shotguns will cover everything that flys . Buy the best you can and keep upgrading, but, and this is important, NEVER, EVER give up a hunting trip to purchase new hardware!

    That is what makes US different, less well dressed in public (according to those close to me), but I've got memories and you are never going to get that from a Coach purse.

    Will a 250,000 Holland kill a buf better than a 14,000 Merkel. Of course not but, if you want one buy it because, unless you pack very carefully, you cant take it with you

    And those my friends are my thoughts on that!
     
  16. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    Second Wind, thanks for putting in a nutshell what I suspected all along. Don't worry, though, I am not loosing sleep over it (hell no, I need all the beauty sleep I can manage just to show my face in public!). I totally concur, it's the memories that count, not the equipment - or even the trophy. Some of my best hunts were for meat and enjoyment, and no amount of money could buy the fun I had. As I told James Grage, I rather buy good second hand, because the tool does not matter so much in itself. As you said, we can't take it with us, but I hope to retain the memories of every hunt I ever did when I shuffle this mortal coil...
     
  17. BH206L3

    BH206L3 New Member

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    Well there are people in the world, where 250K US would be to them what a 1.25 for a cup of coffee is to me. Holland and Holland always catered to the folks that could just write the check with out a blink of an eye. Worth it or not, its in the eye of the beholder. A NULA from Mel Forbes would do just as well in the shooting department and maybe better. A Legend from D'Arcy Echols with out doubt. As for double guns there are plenty that shoot dam well and are well made. On the other hand to be so well heeled to be able to have your guns fitted by one of the Best gunmakers in the world well it would be nice, I don't loose any sleep over it, thou.
     
  18. Benn

    Benn New Member

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    a quick look at the movie that plays when you go to the Holland and Holland website should give you an idea of who they sell to.

    They are also a company that focuses on the high end English Driven shooting crowd, where having a tailored shooting outfit with a $300 dollar tie and packing a tuxedo for the after shoot dinner is the norm.

    don't take me wrong, H&H are the the top of the tree when it comes rifles(just look at the number of calibers that has their name attached to it, and the gunsmiths are true masters.
    but they certainly are not about value for money, and thats part of the allure for the people that buy them.

    and how stressfull would it be walking or crawling through the bush with a 250K rifle?
     
  19. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    Benn, I suspect THOSE guys have their crawling done for them.
     
  20. Nyati

    Nyati AH Legend

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    What, crawling with a 300$ tie!

    How disgusting :laughing:
     

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