If you’re looking to buy a second-hand gun and want to know how to go about it, then you’re in the right place. Browse through our gun reviews and let our experts advise you on what to look out for.

Like a used car, there are some excellent second-hand guns out there and some that are definitely not a bargain.

Should you buy a gun from a friend? A registered firearms dealer? What’s best?

The important thing is to do your homework first – so read through these articles which tell you what you need to know.


Beretta 687 EELL

Three of the classiest boxlocks around

“I would dearly love to be able to afford a sidelock O/U from a prestigious maker, but I can’t afford one. Instead, I am going to have to settle for a side-plated boxlock. I have a budget in mind, but I will happily exceed it to get the right gun.”…

What’s a good second-hand rifle for deer stalking?

Q:  I want my son to come out stalking with me; he is keen and a good shot. Can you recommend 
a good-value second-hand rifle? Will any brand be OK providing the rifle meets the right specifications, and 
if so what specifications should I be looking for? A: It is…

Northern Shooting Show

20 popular second-hand all-rounders

If your budget is £750 and under Baikal This is one of my top 10 guns built in the last half century and it’s cheap, reliable with the Baikal reputation for toughness. On most over-and-unders the ejectors can be turned off, and firing the top barrel first is selected by…

woman with shotgun in field

A look at three second-hand, low recoil guns

It surprises me that sensitivity to recoil seems to have little to do with physical build. I’ve met guys built like Jack who find recoil painful, and also skinny guys like me who don’t seem to suffer at all. It’s not that I don’t bruise when shooting heavy loads, but…

game gun

Three popular game guns to buy second-hand

Mike George’s buying advice for game guns When people ask for multi-use, most experienced shooters recommend a sporter. Sporters are built to tackle our domestic sporting disciplines and similar targets under the international FITASC rules, all of which try to simulate targets encountered in field shooting. Most sporters weigh within…

buying a gun at auction

Tips on buying a gun at auction

Thanks to popular TV shows, most of us are familiar with what goes on at auctions. But that doesn’t mean we’d be happy with the idea of bidding at a gun auction. The fact is that, in spite of our familiarity with TV entertainment such as Antiques Road Trip, Bargain…

Man shooting with Baikal 12 bore

A closer look at a Baikal shotgun

Considering a Baikal shotgun? Mike George explains why the Russian-built shotgun is one of his top ten guns produced during the last half-century

Browning B525

Wanted – a bargain claybuster to replace old Browning B325

This reader’s Browning B325 could date back to 1995 when the model was introduced, and I am guessing it is around 25 years old. These guns keep their value, and a reasonable example is worth at least £500 on the secondhand market. However, this gun’s owner tells me it has definitely seen better days. The woodwork is scratched,…

On a budget? These guns are under £500

Guns to buy before the price goes up

If I was thinking of buying a new gun I would be tempted to do it right now, as prices could well go up quite steeply in the not-too distant future. It’s because of the decline in value of Sterling, which is bound to affect all imports soon. At the time of writing, £1 was worth only…

side-by-side hammergun

Don’t discount second-hand side-by-side shotguns

A: English boxlock shotguns represent fantastic value for money because they are rather unfashionable at the moment. The Italian over-and-under carries all before it. A boxlock made between the wars or just after World War II is a classic handmade sporting gun. So is a hammergun. Both represent very good value for money in the current market. Assessing a…

William Powell Perseus

Three second-hand game guns worth looking at

ATA Arms Lightweight Field The late and much respected shooting writer Gough Thomas expressed the opinion that the ideal weight for a game gun to shoot 1oz of shot was 6lb, while 6lb 6oz was right for 1 1/16oz loads. The book in question – Shotguns & Cartridges for game and clays – was first published…

Winchester Model 23

Second-hand guns for gamekeepers and clayshooters

Winchester Model 23 Side-by-side classes in major sporting contests don’t seem to be as popular as they were, which is a pity because they formed a friendly link between clay and gameshooting. Nevertheless, using a side-by-side for club Sporting targets can be great fun, as well as sharpening up the reflexes ready for the autumn. Of course,…

Mannlicher-Schoenauer bolt action


This rifle is one of those items in which classic charm marries with modern-day custom design. The Mannlicher-Schoenauer bolt action is indicative of a bygone era when German Imperial gunsmithing skills were afforded mythical status due to unrivalled levels of quality and demand. It is such that many a custom rifle maker seeks out such actions…

Miroku Universal MK60 engraving

Three secondhand Sporters

Miroku MK60 Universal Grade 5 In the 1980s a type of gun for the Sporting disciplines was just evolving. All too many Continental manufacturers were trying to palm us off with slightly modified trap guns, while their game guns were too light and often too tightly choked, and skeet guns were too open-choked and not nearly steady…

20-bore game guns

Second-hand 20-bore game guns

Browning B725 Hunter 20-bore, target price £1,500 A basic, Grade 1 version of the Browning B725 Hunter may weigh anything between 7lb and almost 7½lb, depending on barrel length (tubes of up to 32in are available) and wood density. And those figures suggest to me that the weight is right for a full day’s comfortable shooting.…

Secondhand game guns

Second-hand shotguns for the season ahead

  Beretta 486 Parellelo Purchasing a gun in July will enable you to shoot a few summer clays to get used to your  acquisition, and get any handling tweaks sorted out, before the serious stuff begins. The choice will be between a traditional side-by-side and a more modern over-and-under, and if you take the first…

Midland Gun Company

Midland Gun Company Single-Barrel .410

The Midland Gun Company was formed in 1889, making it in some ways a relative newcomer to the Birmingham gun scene. It grew to become quite a large business and manufactured a broad range of worthy, if sometimes rather substantial, shotguns as well as carrying out subcontract work for the trade…

Midland Gun Co shotgun

How to find bargain British side-by-side shotguns

It is not surprising that even those shooters brought up on the modern imported over-and-under sometimes cast an appreciative eye at British side-by-side shotguns, because they are fine and distinctly attractive pieces of work. Usually lighter and handier than most over-and- unders they are for many shooters still the ideal game…

Webley Stingray Express LE

Webley Stingray Express LE

Webley & Scott was one of our oldest gunmakers but sadly it ceased manufacturing in Britain in 2005 and all its airguns are now made in Turkey. It is a shame because the penultimate years bore some classic air rifles. This was largely influenced by the merger of Venom Arms…