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CCofGB - Features

Marking your militaria collection

Bill Harriman

Posted on 22 May 2012



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Insurance companies are tough and sceptical at the best of times. In times of economic downturn, they become harder than the flint in a musket lock.

Equally if you are to stand any chance of having stolen property recovered then it needs to be both carefully documented and uniquely marked to foil any attempt to sell it on. It goes further than mere inventory keeping. There is something very satisfying about looking back over the history of the creation of a collection.

Those of us who enjoy collecting arms and armour tend to be passionate about it. We invest a great deal of our hard earned cash in our hobby.

Whilst the joy of owning historical artefacts is generally our prime motivating force, carefully chosen pieces can also prove to be a better and safer investment than the banks and building societies.

We don’t just invest our money in our collections; we also invest a great deal of ourselves in them too.

It can be quite an emotional business ranging from the deep satisfaction of nabbing a bargain to the thrill of the chase by tracking down that important item which fills the gap.

Having put so much into building a collection, it is common sense to document and mark it properly.

Here are some key tips to protecting your collection:

 

  • Create a detailed database of every item in your collection. Describe it fully and add a selection of photographs.
  • Write your name and address on a piece of paper, roll it up and pop it into the barrel.
  • Use self-adhesive labels stuck under the buttplate and barrel.
  • Use a permanent marker or pen that shows up under UV light to write in an inconspicious area of the item.
  • Consider the pros and cons of inserting microchips in items.
  • Use a high-tech solution such as Smartwater to mark your items.


This is a small excerpt taken from an article in the June/July 2012 issue of Classic Arms & Militaria. To read the full article, order your copy easily and securely by clicking here.

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