300 H&H Western Match Brass Question


#1

Good Afternoon. I am trying to help a friend with his father’s reloading components. He has brought me 980 pieces of Western Match 300 H&H Brass. 600 of these are still in the tan cardboard boxes. 380 pieces are loose. I am trying to help him maximize the sales price for his elderly father. This would have some historical significance to a collector, I would think.

I am turning to you for advise as to what this would be worth on the open market. It is amazing that this still exists.

I welcome your comments on this matter.

Best regards.

Chuck


#2

I am not sure that there would be that much collector interest in these, at least not in a large quantity unless an optimistic dealer wanted to lay in a lifetime supply.

Several makers currently offer .300 H&H brass and it is available on line from several sources, with prices running about $1.30-$1.50 per case retail.

You could try to sell it on GunBroker.com and the market will determine what it is worth. Frankly, if anyone offered anything close to $1.00 per case, I thik that would be fair, especially if you can convince them to take the whole lot at once, not just a few boxes.

Others may have different opinions.


#3

Seems to me that there are 3 markets: shooters (in general), where you might get $1 per case if you do all the selling (table at a gunshow, etc.); collectors of general US commercial ammunition, where you might get the same amount for the same amount of work or $0.60 to $0.75 per case if you sell the whole lot to a dealer; and more than $1 per case if you sell to collectors or enthusiasts who specialize in 1930s-1940s-1950s sporting & target rifles. You need to ask a lot of questions about the previous history. What are the headstamps? Do they say “match”? How are the boxes marked? And what are the codes on the boxes? Did the owner shoot at Camp Perry or any of the other long range matches? If so, when? Does he have boxes of bullets? Does he still have the rifle? Any records, pictures, targets, etc? A call to Amoskeag Auctions in Manchester, NH might lead to a sale, but their commissions are stiff. In this case, you will do better if you have a story to sell.


#4

I really hate to rain on anyone’s parade, but I think what you have is nothing more, nor less, than a big bunch of 300 H&H brass that is worth no more, nor less, than any other large belted brass. The fact that it may have been loaded as match ammunition at one time has little impact on its value.

I’ve been a competitive shooter all of my adult life and I never throw away an empty case. In my garage, right now, I have thousands of cases, of all calibers, that are worth no more than the going rate for scrap brass. When I’m gone, that is probably how my wife and kids will get rid of the stuff, selling it to a scrap dealer.

As waterman said, you could take it to different gun shows, or to garage sales, and sell it piece by piece or box by box, but if your time is worth anything, you’ll probably find that you could have made more money taking a part time job at McDonalds.

Sorry, I can think of no polite way of saying this. But, I wish you luck.

Ray


#5

Just out of curiosity, did Western ever headstamp any .300 H&H brass “match”? The desperate economic days of the 30s saw DuBiel & Hoffman headstamps, plus there was a lot of interest in long range match shooting.


#6

My collecting specialty is Match and other Competition cartridges and I have never seen a 30-06 or 300 H&H non-military case marked “Match”. Over the years, all of the major ammunition manufacturers have made National Match, International Match, Palma Match, Wimbledon Match, and other completion cartridges. Some had headstamps that helped to identify them after they were removed from the carton, but even those headstamps were not much different than typical commercial headstamps of the day. The cartridges may bring a small premium but it’s hardly like winning the lottery. Fired cases are common and are usually overlooked by the average collector. Fired cases that have the headstamp de jour are worth only what the going price is for any other brass.

Being a competition shooter myself, and a cartridge collector, I can understand the attraction of anything that has a direct connection to famous shooters of the past. But, to the average guy, the provenance is nothing more than a “story” worth only what he is willing to pay for it.

On a similar note, I have some 30-06 cases that were fired by General Custer at the Little Big Horn. I can furnish a signed statement verifying their authenticity. Offers are glady accepted.

Ray