Letter Re: Advice on Police Department Trade-In Guns

Hi Jim,
I saw the posting about police trade-in guns and thought I could weigh in both as a cop and as a law enforcement firearms instructor and armorer.

Cop trade in guns can be a real steal if a buyer understands a few things. First, a majority of trade-in guns are low mileage, high wear guns. What that means is that the guns will often see anywhere from minimal to extensive holster wear. However, in this day and age, a majority of cops are not routine shooters and therefore, rarely shoot their assigned duty pistols. If a buyer has the ability to look through whatever collection of trade-in guns a dealer may have, it behooves them to do so to find the low wear low mileage gem. Second, most cop guns are expected to be serviced and internal parts inspected at least yearly. Some of these guns may have new internals not replaced by the manufacturer if an agency upgraded with the same manufacturer (Such as older Sig 239s for newer ones). Many “previously owned” guns like SIGs “certified pre-owned” (CPO) have refurbished internal parts. Third, because the guns are used, their prices are much better than [buying] new. As an example, a current vendor is selling Generation 2 Glocks 22s and 23s for 1?2 to 2/3rds of the usual new gun price.

As always with trade-in guns, caveat emptor. But they can be a real steal! When my trusty Generation 2 Glock 22 duty pistol is retired and traded, I already have a deal set-up with the distributor to buy it back for sentimental reasons. Best Regards, – MP in Seattle (10 Cent Challenge subscriber)