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At a recent gun show I met a very nice gentleman. Turns out he was a retired General and was looking for a 1911A1. Later that day I saw him at a table that had several (expertly) restored pistols. They were being offered as 100% original with prices to match. As I walked by the General said hello again and I heard the dealer telling him what a perfect time capsule the A1 was and how $4500.00 was a steal. Now this dealer is known to have nice guns. He's also known to have nice resto's and even fakes. If you suggest that any of his guns are anything less than he says they are, he calls you an idiot and impolitely asks you to leave. I hated the thought of the General getting taken. Do you take an opportunity to pull the man aside for a talk or let him learn an expensive lesson?
 

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I had to pull my old man aside to tell him about an “original nickel” 1911 I’ve mentioned in a different thread.
 

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First of all you (or me) would have to be iron clad sure the gun he was interested in was misrepresented. Hard to do with the three of you standing there. Now what I might do is try to get the general aside and tell him to be careful as the seller has a reputation for selling bogus guns. Many years ago I worked with a guy that was into guns and I would occasionally see him at a gun show. He would have maybe just one colt single action laying out at a otherwise empty table with a bunch of pictures of Poncho Villa or whoever done in such a way as "hinting or insinuating" a connection without really claiming it was his. (At least in front of me).
I was the new guy on the department, he was older and I still pretty green in the field so never braced him on what he was doing. This was like in the mid/late 1960`s so just to keep peace at work I never pinned him down and would just say hello and move on.
It sure is a hard call!
 

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I say: General: “I’d like to buy you a cup of coffee to thank you for your service and I have a friend who has a collection of 1911s that may be more attractive to you.” Once you’re clear of the table tell him what you know about that particular dealer and his guns. Then let the General decide what to do.

Just because he’s a Flag Officer doesn’t make him expert on anything, especially firearms. His last issued gun was more then likely a 1903 GO; a far cry from a 1911, 1911A1, or Commercial Model.
 

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At a recent gun show I met a very nice gentleman. Turns out he was a retired General and was looking for a 1911A1..... Do you take an opportunity to pull the man aside for a talk or let him learn an expensive lesson?
Okay Rick, what did you do?
Vic
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, the dealer was called to another of his tables. Once the dealer turned his back I told the general I saw something he might like to look at on another table, across the room. As we were walking I gave him my opinion of the pistol he was considering. I didn't show him anything else and I didn't offer an opinion of the dealer. Nothing would be served by slandering the dealer. He thanked me and I left it at that. Hours later, on my way out the door, I walked by the table and the A1 was still there.
 

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I’d probably say you don’t want that 0% finish pistol in front of him, then when the dealer smarted off to me, I’d probably say, Sir we can kindly step outside to discuss this matter further if you’d like. The ones that are usually rude when getting caught with their hand in the cookie jar really get my blood pumping.
 
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