Rock Island Auction Company

Frequently Asked Questions

Here at Rock Island Auction, we want your experience as both a buyer and seller to be as enjoyable as possible. To help with that, we've put together this comprehensive list of frequently asked questions so you can find the answers you're looking for quickly and easily.

Bidding FAQ

How can I bid on an item?

There are numerous ways to bid in gun auctions. Placing bids on our website is the most popular, watch a how to video. – Live bidding in person: Come to our facility, register to bid, and wave that bidder’s paddle! – Live bidding via phone: Contact us in advance of the auction to tell us you’d like to be a phone bidder. Before the items you’d like to win come up for bid, a RIAC employee sitting in the auction hall will call you and bid for you based on your instructions over the phone. It’s as close to being in the auction hall as it gets. Telephone bidding can also be set up via the RIAC web page. When searching on our Online Catalog, simply locate the item, enter into the Item Listing, and click the yellow box that reads “Phone Bid.” – Live bidding online: You can bid live right from our webpage using RIAC Live! We use stream live audio and you can place your bids in real time with a simple click. As with all forms of bidding, you must be registered to bid prior to auction. You may also bid via third-party websites that host our auction (such as Proxibid). Keep in mind that there is an extra 3% live bidding fee charged for using the third-party services. – Absentee Bidding: Absentee bids are also referred to as sealed bids. These bids can be submitted to RIAC via any number of means: our website, email, fax, phone, or by mailing in an Absentee Bid Form.

I am outside the U.S. Can I bid?

Yes. We are excited to have a growing number of bidders in the international community. Please make sure that you contact your local government to discuss regulations regarding firearm ownership and discuss shipping with customs in regards to getting firearms into the country.

What is an absentee bid?

An absentee bid, or sealed bid, is used when you choose not to bid live. You tell us a maximum figure you would like to bid, and we execute bids on your behalf up to that number and no higher. You do not have to reach your maximum amount to win an item. The easiest way to browse and submit absentee bids is via the RIAC web page at

Can I win an absentee bid for less than my designated amount?

Yes. In fact, we’ll win the item for the lowest amount possible. For example. If you place a bid for $1,000, and the only other bid is for $500, then we would only bid for you one additional time (to $550) to become the winner.

What is the “Buyer’s Premium”?

A buyer’s premium is a percentage added to your winning bid. It’s how auction houses pay the bills. At Rock Island Auction Company, the buyer’s premium is 15% if you pay by cash, check, or wire transfer. If paying by credit card, the premium is 18.5%.

Who wins if there is a tie in the absentee bids?

If there are no live bidders to break the tie, the item is awarded to the earliest bid placed.

What is a +1 or +2?

You may have noticed these when submitting a sealed bid. A “plus 1” or “plus 2” is also used to help break ties. For example, say your bid is $500 and so is someone else’s. By placing a “+1” on the bid, you’re saying that we can place one extra bid to help you win the item, in this case $550. A “+2” gives us permission to place 2 extra bids. It’s a helpful way to stay within a budget, but still win items if you’re close.

Can I cancel an absentee bid?

Yes, if the item has not sold already. Please let us know as soon in advance if you can. If you are bidding live through a 3rd party, you must contact them to cancel your bid. We are not able to cancel bids placed with any other live bidding site.

What are gun auction bid increments?

They are set numbers that our auctioneers must adhere to as bids go higher and higher. See the table below to know when the amounts change. Rock Island Auction Company has established the following bidding increments in this table. Auction bids are designed to adhere to approximately 10% of bid price. Auctioneers at their discretion may or may not cut a bid increment, in most cases the auctioneers will adhere to the following bid increments.
Rock Island Auction Company has established the following bidding increments in this table.
Auction bids are designed to adhere to approximately 10% of bid price. Auctioneers at their discretion may or may not cut a bid increment, in most cases the auctioneers will adhere to the following bid increments.
$50 - $200$10 increment
$200 - $500$25 increment
$500 - $1,000$50 increment
$1,000 - $2,000$100 increment
$2,000 - $5,000$250 increment
$5,000 - $10,000$500 increment
$10,000 - $20,000$1,000 increment
$20,000 - $50,000$2,500 increment
$50,000 - $100,000$5,000 increment
$100,000 - $200,000$10,000 increment
Over $200,000Auctioneers Discretion

If I place a bid for a lot with multiple guns, is my bid for each gun or all the guns?

All the guns! If you win that lot, you win all the items in it for the amount you bid.

A gun I want has other guns with it. Can I just bid on the gun I want?

No. Items that have been placed in a lot together will be sold together.

What is a “conditional bid”?

A conditional bid is one that we execute based on whether or not previous events have taken place. Because of their complexity, they must be placed by calling the RIAC facility. Here are some examples of common conditional bids. “When I hit $20,000, please cancel my remaining bids.” “I’m bidding on two pistols, so if I win the first one please cancel my bids on the second.” “I’m bidding on two pistols, so if I don’t win the first, please make my bid on the second $______.” “If I don’t win lot X, please increase my bid on lot Y.”

What is the difference between Auction Types?

Premier Gun Auction Our Premier Auctions take place three times a year, each over a three-day period. A Preview Day is held all day on the preceding Thursday and the items are sold Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. A Premier Auction consists of approximately 2,700 antique and collectible lots. Each of these auctions is made up of rare, unusual, mint, and highly collectible pieces. We produce a minimum of 5,500 full color, 3-volume catalog sets featuring each lot with in-depth descriptions, a high and low estimate, and multiple high resolution photos. Each volume of the catalog corresponds to a day of the auction. The three Premier Auctions are typically held in April, September, and December. Our Premier Firearms Auctions have made international press and are renowned for offering the most significant, historic and important firearms. It is not uncommon for us to set a world record in any given Premier Auction. Each auction routinely covers the main genres of collecting from antique to modern Winchesters, Colts, U.S. and European Military, Sporting, etc. Our Premier Auctions also offer swords, bayonets, military artifacts, and other related material. Our website features the entire auction catalog online and is searchable by model, serial number, manufacturer, lot number, keyword, and more.
Sporting & Collector Firearms Auction Our Sporting & Collector Firearms Auctions are made up of affordable antiques, beginning collector’s items, usable sporting arms, modern firearms, and many non-firearm lots. A majority of the lots have multiple firearms. A Sporting & Collector Firearms Auction has routinely consisted of approximately 3,000 lots with as many as 10,000 firearms in those lots. We hold two Sporting & Collector Firearms Auctions per year, one in the summer and one in the winter. TheSporting & Collector Firearms Auction also has a Preview Day which is held all day on the Wednesday prior to auction and the items are sold Friday, Saturday, and Sunday – same as our Premier Auctions. Recently, Sporting & Collector Firearms Auctions have become 4-day events, with the Preview Day on the preceding Wednesday and the items sold Thursday through Sunday. The concept of theSporting & Collector Firearms Sale was initiated by the demand that our customers developed for the “everyday collector” type guns. Were these guns placed in a Premier Auction, they would simply be overshadowed. These guns need to be seen in person as we keep the description to a minimum and use a rating scale for the condition encouraging the buyer to view the items in person. We produce approximately 10,000-13,000 black and white catalogs that are sent to potential bidders all over the world. These auctions are comprised of sporting and hunting firearms from manufacturers such Browning, Winchester, Ruger, Colt, Remington, and Smith & Wesson. They also contain a strong number of military firearms from the U.S. and Germany, but also house Japanese and European military firearms. You will also find firearm related books, holsters, swords, parts, leather, ammunition and more. This is also an auction for antique and highly collectible items. Each item is listed with a headline, high and low estimates, condition rating, and photo. As with our Premier Auctions, our website features the entire Sporting & Collector Firearms Auction catalog of items and is searchable by model, serial number, manufacturer, lot number, keyword, and more. All items are viewable in color online and all guns have both sides shown!
Arms & Accessories Day Auction Rock Island Auction Company continues to be an innovator within the firearms industry and is proud to offer an additional platform to sell your items. Guns listed here for auction will be sold in the same way as our other auctions except there is no live bidding audience in our facility during the auction. Bids are accepted absentee, telephone and live on the Internet during the day of the auction. These auctions are held three to four times annually and are comprised of a myriad of firearms and related material. Typically, items in our Arms & Accessories Day Auctions are placed there as they do not meet our minimum lot value to earn a spot in a Premier or Sporting & Collector Firearms sale. Again, as with our Premier Auctions, our website features the entire Online-Only Auction catalog of items and is searchable by model, serial number, manufacturer, lot number, keyword, and more. All items are viewable in color online and all guns have both sides shown

After Auction FAQ

How do I know if I won?

We send out emails at the end of each auction day to notify absentee bidders if their bids were successful or not. You may also view this information in your Online Account at the end of each auction day.

Can my item be shipped directly to my house?

If the item is an antique, yes. For other items, please contact our front office to verify if an item can be shipped to a residence. We comply with all current state and federal firearm laws.

When will my items ship?

Please bear with us as after an auction there can be over 9,000 firearms to securely pack and ship. Firearms will be shipped in the order their paperwork and payments are completed, and after any applicable waiting periods. You can expedite this process by filling out the sealed bid winner’s form located in your RIAC web account. This form is available the Monday after an auction if you were a successful bidder.

What are the “Prices Realized”?

Prices realized are the final prices for items that have been sold at auction. This usually includes the price the item hammer for during the auction, plus 15%, a standard buyer’s premium. Prices Realized are often the figures distributed after an auction because they accurately reflect what someone was willing to pay to own the item.

When will the auction’s Prices Realized list be posted?

Generally by the Wednesday after the auction if not sooner. They can be searched on our Online Catalog or viewed in a PDF document.

How do you ship your items?

Currently, our primary shipping provider is UPS.

Options for Participating at Rock Island Auction Company

Come to the auction in person.

Attending the auction is the best way to participate. It’s fun, you get to see all the items, hold them in your hands, and meet other collectors to talk guns! Once you arrive you can register and will receive a bidder card. If you cannot attend the following options are available for you to bid. Generally over 60% of an auction’s items sell using the following bidding options.

Bidding Absentee (Sealed Bid).

Absentee bidding is extremely popular and it’s very simple to do. The best way to do this is to create a website account. Not only does this make it simple to bid, there are other benefits as well. With a website account you can view all your bids you placed, check the status of those bids, and check your results after each day of the auction. Once your account is created just search the online catalog. When you find an item you want to place a bid on, click the bid button, and enter your maximum bid amount. As you place bids into your bid cart they are not submitted. You must finalize your bids by clicking the ‘Submit Bids Now’ button. Once you do that you will receive an auto generated email listing all items you bid on and the maximum bid amount you entered. We execute those bids for you by computer against the bidders who attend the auction, or other absentee bidders. We do our best to win the item for you at the lowest possible amount.

Bidding by Telephone.

Telephone bids can be set up the same way you set up an absentee bid on our website. When you place a bid in our website, you can select the button Phone Bid. For a telephone bid you tell us which lots you would like to bid on. You will be called by a representative during the auction and bid live via phone. We do suggest leaving optional “Cover-Me Bids” in case you are not able to be reached by telephone. To avoid not being reached by a RIAC representative, we recommend using Text Message Alerts – a new feature that sends a simple text message reminder that you will be bidding soon. In order to bid on a lot over the telephone at or near the time it is being sold during the auction you must contact us in advance to make arrangements. Generally, if you contact us the day preceding the sale we will have time to process your information. Telephone bids received same day run the risk of not being executed. Please contact us to be sure.

Bidding Live on the Internet.

Live bidding using the internet is also an option. We are proud to offer RIAC Live, our own real-time bidding service. It offers live streaming video, a highly customizable experience, and is as close to attending a live auction as it gets! Click here to learn more or here for a quick “How To.” There is an additional 1% added to the buyer’s premium for using this service. RIAC also uses the services of other companies that list our auction catalog on their websites. Currently we use the services of Proxibid. Please keep in mind that any third party sites that host our auctions currently assess an additional 3% charge added to the buyer’s premium for using their live services. If you simply want to place absentee bids we recommend you place those bids using the RIAC website to avoid the additional 3% added charge.NOTE: If you experience any problems while using the Proxibid services please call 1-877-505-7770. Non-urgent questions can be emailed to [email protected]. This includes changes or cancellations to your bids. Rock Island Auction Company cannot fix web site problems with any of the live service companies. contact them directly.

Creating an Account.

To create an account simply go the Create Account page and fill out the required details. After verifying your email address your account will be created.

Top Frequently Asked Questions about Bidding with Rock Island Auction Company

Is it possible to win a lot for less than my absentee amount I bid?

This happens routinely since we bid for you as if you are actually here. We do our best to get you the lot at the best price possible. For example: Say a lot has a low estimate of $1,000. If you had an absentee bid in of $900, the bidding might start at $500. Let’s say someone on the floor bids up to $700 and stops, if there are no other absentee bids or phone bids for this lot you would win the lot at $750 -just one bid past $700.

What is the buyer’s premium (BP)?

Almost every firearms auction has a buyer’s premium that is charged to winning bidders. A Buyer’s Premium is the amount added to the winning bid amount (hammer price). The BP is used by the auction company to promote the auction and to help defray the auction expense costs. The BP at RIAC is 18.5% if you pay by credit card. It is reduced to 15% if you pay by cash, check or wire transfer. For example, if the Winning Bid Amount is $1,000 and you pay by check, the Buyer’s Premium would be $150 (15% of $1,000). The Total Purchase Price is then calculated as the Winning Bid Amount + the Buyer’s Premium, or $1,000 + $150 = Total Purchase Price of $1,150

What is a Bid Plus 1 or 2?, What happens if my maximum bid is equal to another bidder’s maximum bid?

A bid “plus” is used in case of an absentee bid tie. It raises your bid by one or two bid increments. Say there are two sealed bids in on an item for $1,000. If there are no “plus” amounts entered on either bid, the bid with the earliest date submitted would be the winning bid. If one individual had a +1, the item would be hammered to them at $1,100, or plus one bid increment. If you would like any additional clarification on the Bid Plus please do not hesitate to contact us.

What amount does the bidding start at?

Bidding generally starts no less than ½ of the low estimate. If there are a lot of absentee bids placed on an item, the item may start at the low estimate or even above the low estimate. The discretion of the starting bid is determined by the auctioneers.

What are the bid increments?

All bids must follow the RIAC bid increment table. Click here to view..

I want to absentee bid, but do not want to use the RIAC website or third party companies. What are my options?

If you prefer to fax in your bids you can download a bid form. A current bid form can be found by clicking the link Sealed Bid Form‘ of the auction in which you wish to bid. Or email us: [email protected] and we can email you one. Once you complete the form you can fax it or mail it to us at: Fax: 309-797-1655 US Mail: Rock Island Auction Company 7819 42nd Street West, Rock Island, IL 61201 Need further assistance or have questions about the form? Or if you just want to give your bids over the phone, please call us at 1-800-238-8022.

I live outside the US. Can I bid?

Yes. We are excited to have a growing number of bidders in the international community. Please make sure that you contact your local government to discuss regulations regarding firearm ownership and discuss shipping with customs in regards to getting firearms into the country.

I want to bid live using a computer during the auction, what live bidding service should I use?

We are proud to offer RIAC Live, our own real-time bidding service. It offers live streaming video, a highly customizable experience, and is as close to attending a live auction as it gets! Click here to learn more or here for a quick “How To.” There is a 1% fee added to the buyer’s premium to use this service.You may also use a third party site that hosts our auctions for us, but please be aware that they will add an additional 3% to the buyer’s premium. You will need to create an account in advance of the auction with the site you choose to use. Our auctions may be be found on Proxibid by clicking here.

Can I cancel an absentee bid?

If the item has not come up for auction, and you notify us 30 minutes or more prior to the item being auctioned off, yes you can. Call us at 1-800-238-8022. If you placed an absentee bid on one of the third party sites, you must contact them as we are not able to access their system. RIAC is not able to cancel absentee bids you place with any other live bidding site.

I bid the amount the lot sold for and did not win!

Tie Bids– It’s possible that two absentee bidders bid the same amount (and bid higher than any live bidders). In that case we award the lot to the first absentee bid received. This applies to absentee bids placed through our website, mail, and fax. Each bid input into the system is stamped with the date/time received. This is why we encourage absentee bidders to give us your bids as soon as possible, as this scenario is very common. The fall of the bid increment – Since we treat absentee bids as if the bidder is here live at the auction, trying to buy as cheaply as possible under the maximum amount the bidder specifies, there’s always a possibility another bidder will beat them to that amount. Here’s an example of how that might happen: An absentee bid is placed on a lot for $1000. Live bidders and other absentee bids at the auction bid the lot up to $900. At that point, we advance the bid on the sealed bidder’s behalf to $950. If there is no raise, the sealed bidder wins the lot for $950. However, the auctioneer asks for $1000 and if a competing live bidder bids $1000, we of course will take the bid. Looking at the sealed bid in this case, the sealed bidder told us not to spend more than $1,000. We are not authorized to go to $1,100 for the absentee bidder, so the live bidder is the successful buyer at the $1000 bid point even though it is exactly the same as the sealed bidder.As you can see, this is entirely unpredictable and depends on how the live bids fall at the auction. In the example above, if live bidding had stopped at $900, we would have advanced the absentee bid to $950, with no other live bidders our absentee bidder would have prevailed. It is exactly what would happen if there were two live bidders in the audience who both planned to stop at $1,000. One would get it, and the other would not. Preventing this from happening to you is simple. Since we buy for you as cheaply as possible at or below the maximum you specify, simply be sure you bid the true maximum you would go to if you were bidding live. Ask yourself, “If I was there, and the bid stopped to someone else at $1,000, would I go $1,100?” If so, bid a plus one or that extra amount. You still may fall on the bad side of the increment, but the exact same thing might happen if you were there bidding live. That’s the nature of an honest auction.

I have a gun I would like to sell?

The firearms market is hotter than ever. Guns of all makes and models, antique, C&R, and modern are selling for record prices! Take advantage of the #1 firearms auction house in the world and let us go to work for you. We advertise internationally, produce the finest catalog in the industry, and follow it with what is unequivocally the strongest and most comprehensive marketing campaign in the business. Submit a request through our website or contact us at [email protected]. There is no obligation. Click here for more information on consignment.

What are the different condition ratings?

N is Newer Rating – 1930s or Newer O is Older Rating – 1930s or Older NA - NEW- all original parts; 99% or more original finish. NB - EXCELLENT- near new condition 95% - 98%, used but little, no noticeable marring of wood or metal, bluing near perfect (some wear at muzzle or sharp edges can be expected). NC - FINE- All original finish 90% - 94% or better, some dings in wood wear commensurable with percent of finish. In working order. ND - VERY GOOD- in working condition, 80% finish or better, appreciable wear on working surfaces 80% - 89%, no corrosion or pitting, minor surface dents or scratches. Wood condition commensurable with percent of finish with dings and dents associated with 80% - 89% gun. NE - GOOD- in working condition, wear on working surfaces, finish 40% - 79%, no broken parts, no corrosion or pitting that will interfere with proper functioning, but may have some minor surface pitting. Wood condition commensurable with percent of finish with dings and dents associated with 40% - 79% gun. NF - FAIR- 0% - 40% with generally smooth finish, may have mild cleaning yet not deeply pitted, but well worn, replacement of minor parts may need mechanical adjustments, may have rust and may have corrosion pits which do not render article unsafe or inoperable. In working condition. Wood condition commensurable with percent of finish with dings and dents associated with 0% - 40% gun. NG - POOR- major or minor parts replaced; major replacement parts required and extensive restoration needed; metal deeply pitted; principal lettering, numerals and design obliterated, wood badly scratched, bruised, cracked or broken; mechanically inoperative; generally undesirable as a collectors firearm in its present state. Finish obscured by heavy cleaning, rust or corrosion. Older Condition Rating (1930s or older) OA - FACTORY NEW- all original parts; 100% original finish; in perfect condition in every respect. OB - EXCELLENT- all original parts; over 80% original finish; sharp lettering, numerals and design on metal; unmarred wood. OC - FINE- all original parts; over 30% original finish, sharp lettering, numerals and design on metal and wood; minor marks in wood. OD - VERY GOOD- all original parts; none to 30% original finish; original metal surfaces smooth with all edges sharp; clear lettering, numerals and design on metal; wood slightly scratched or bruised. OE - GOOD - some minor replacement parts; metal smoothly rusted or lightly pitted in places, cleaned; principal lettering, numerals and design on metal legible; lightly scratched, bruised or minor cracks repaired; in good working order. OF - FAIR- some major parts replaced; minor replacement parts may be required; metal rusted, may be lightly pitted all over, vigorously cleaned; rounded edges of metal and wood; principal lettering, numerals and design on metal partly obliterated; wood scratched, bruised, cracked or repaired where broken; in fair working order or can be easily repaired and placed in working order. OG - POOR- major or minor parts replaced; major replacement parts required and extensive restoration needed; metal deeply pitted; principal lettering, numerals and design obliterated, wood badly scratched, bruised, cracked or broken; mechanically inoperative; generally undesirable as a collectors firearm in its present state. PRF - PROFESSIONALLY REFINISHED OR RESTORED NPRF - NON-PROFESSIONALLY REFINISHED/COLD BLUE, ETC. WB - WOOD IS BETTER FOR THE PERCENT OF FINISH RATING GIVEN WW - WOOD IS WORSE FOR THE PERCENT FINISH RATING GIVEN Some items may have “dual” codes. For example 90% professional reblue (newer) would be the code NC-PRF.

Frequently Asked Questions on Purchasing Auction Items

Do I pay taxes on the lot?

Sales Tax:

RIAC is a Marketplace Facilitator (as defined in the applicable regulations for each state) for purposes of collecting and submitting sales tax for each applicable state. A Marketplace Facilitator is a business that contracts with sellers to facilitate the sale of tangible goods and administers all aspects of the transaction. A Marketplace Facilitator is required to collect sales tax from the buyer and remit such sales tax to the state to which the items are shipped. The sale tax is based on the ship to address. If the item is picked-up from the RIAC facility or shipped to an Illinois address, Illinois sales tax of 8.5% will be collected. Generally, all items included on the invoice are taxable.

To establish a tax free sale, a copy of a valid reseller’s permit or other instrument or information establishing a sales tax exemption, as required by the applicable state, must be provided to RIAC’s satisfaction. Please refer to our website,, for additional information regarding resale certificates. Any purchaser claiming a sales tax exemption yet unable to provide satisfactory proof to RIAC at the time of payment will be required to pay the applicable tax to RIAC and thereafter seek a refund from the applicable state. Buyer agrees to pay RIAC the actual amount of tax due if the incorrect amount of sales tax was collected at the time of purchase for any reason.

Sales tax is required to be collected and remitted in all states except the following:

States with no sales tax: Alaska (certain cities, counties and boroughs require RIAC to collect sales tax), Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon.

State with no sales tax for Marketplace Facilitators: Missouri (Prior to 1/1/2023).

Other: District of Columbia (DC)-RIAC does not meet the thresholds to require the collection of sales tax.

Can I purchase firearms at auction and have them shipped to my home?

If you bid on items that are antique, we can release the firearms to you or ship directly to you. If you are bidding on an item that is manufactured after 1898 and do not hold an FFL, we would have you fill out the standard ATF form 4473 if you live within Illinois. If you live within a contiguous state of Illinois, (i.e. Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky, Indiana, or Wisconsin) and are purchasing a long gun, we would also have you fill out the “yellow form” and wait the required period. Handguns must be shipped to an FFL dealer for these states, and we can help you find one if you do not use one currently. If you live outside this area, or do not fill out the ATF form 4473, we will ship to an FFL licensed dealer of your choice and they will transfer the gun to you. Be sure to check your state requirements on firearm ownership before placing a bid. If you have any questions about the ATF form 4473 or regulations on transferring firearms please contact us. While searching our website catalog, please note that above the description there is a field labeled ‘Class’ that will tell you if the firearm is antique, modern, or curio and relic.

I see more than one gun in this lot. Is the amount I bid for each gun or all guns in the lot?

No matter how many items are in the lot your bid amount is for everything in the lot. For example; if a lot has 5 rifles in it, and your bid amount was $1,000 and you won; you get all 5 rifles for the amount you bid plus the buyer’s premium. We often are asked this question on multi lots too. Do you sell each of the guns individually? No. We sell the items in the lot as a lot. The estimated value on the lot is for all the items within that lot.

The items I won during the auction all sold for the maximum amount of money I was willing to bid?

At RIAC we try our best to win the lot for each customer for the lowest price possible. Remember that many times customers are trying to bid as little as possible to win an item. For example if you bid on 10 lots in the auction, you won 2 of the 10 at your maximum bid amount. This also means you lost 8 items as your bid amount was too low. There are thousands of bidders in each auction. You are bidding against others that also know the value and want to win for as little as possible. If you placed low bids on 100 lots and won a single lot for your maximum price, that is a success!

When will you ship my items?

Please bear with us as we have as many as 9,000 firearms to pack and ship after an auction. You can help expedite your invoice if you fill out the sealed bid winner’s form in your web account tools. This is available after each auction if you were a successful bidder.

When will the prices realized at auction be posted?

Typically we post the prices on our website within 2-4 days after the auction is over.

As a reseller what do I need to do to be tax exempt?

If you are a reseller or want to find out about your states requirements on taxes for resellers click this link Resale Certificate Requirements

Tips for Gun Auction Absentee Bidding with Rock Island Auction

Bid early!

Each and every auction we get thousands of absentee bids, resulting in many tie absentee bid amounts on the same item. To break the tie between other absentee bidders, we take the bid that was received first.

Bid your maximum amount!

Your bids are executed against the live crowd and other absentee bidders. We do not start the bidding off at your maximum bid amount! We try and win items for absentee bidders as cheaply as possible

Use the bid increment table to your advantage.

For example: You place a bid for an item with a maximum amount of $1,900. Consider raising that bid to $2,000 – that’s an amount where the bid increment increases, also called a “jump point.” By doing that you will force another bidder to “jump” to the next level in the bid increments. In this case if you bid $1,900, another bidder would only have to go to $2,000 to beat your bid. If you bid $2,000 the next bid increment is $2,250. This forces the other bidders to bid $250 over your bid instead of $100. It may not sound like much, but it is surprising how often this works!

Find the related items in the auction.

Many times our auctions can have multiple items of the same type on different days. You may not win the item on Day 1, but you may have additional opportunities to win similar items on Day 2 or Day 3. Check your account each night, or the morning before the next auction starts. If you bid on the RIAC website, we post results of your bids in your 'Current Bids'. If you did not win anything on Friday, check the remaining two days of the auction and bid again.

Conditional bidding.

With so many great items in our auctions, we care pleased to offer conditional bids. For example , some customers have a maximum they can spend at the auction, say that maximum is $10,000. If that amount is reached at any point in the auction we cancel your remaining bids. Another scenario would be: If I win lot number xxx cancel my bid on lot yyy (assuming that lot has not come up for auction). To set up conditional bids you must contact us at 1-800-238-8022 and we will be happy to set up all reasonable conditions.

If you are only going to bid absentee, place your bids on the RIAC website.

Absentee bids are also accepted on the third party bidding sites with whom we list our auctions. These sites accept absentee bids, however, an additional 3% that is added to the buyer’s premium for using their service. You can place the same bids on our site without the additional 3% charge.

Bid Estimates:

Every auction lot has a low and high estimated value. This does not mean the item must sell in that estimate range. You can bid above or below the estimates. The price estimates are based on our specialists’ research of current market selling prices of similar items, and other factors depending on the item. Most items sell in or near these estimate ranges.

Live Bidding:

There are three ways to bid live without attending the auction in person. RIAC Live: is our own real-time bidding service. It offers live, streaming video, a highly customizable experience, and is as close to attending a live auction as it gets! Click here to learn more or here for a quick “How To.” There is a 1% fee added to the buyer’s premium to use this service. By telephone: Live phone bidding must be arranged in advance of the auction and can be done in one of two ways.You can use our website to find the items you want to bid on just as you would an absentee bid. Once you have located the item, click it to enter its listing. In the listing, to the right of the item’s large headline will be two yellow buttons. To bid live via telephone, please click the top button labeled “Phone Bid.” When you submit your bids you will enter a phone number we can reach you with on each day of the auction. One of our telephone bidding representatives will call you a few minutes prior to the item coming up for auction (approximately 8 – 10 lots). You may also call us at 1-800-238-8022 to set up a live phone bidding session. We recommend using our Text Message Alerts when bidding live via telephone to ensure you never miss a call from a RIAC representative. Via Third Party Website: The other way to live bid is to use one of the third party companies with whom RIAC lists its catalog. You will need to create an account with one of these companies prior to the start of the auction. There is also an additional 3% live bidding fee added to the buyer’s premium for using this service. Note to users of one of the Live bidding services: the auction moves very fast, with most lots only appearing for about 30 seconds. Be prepared to bid your maximum amount. If there is any delay in getting the bid the auctioneers will sell the lot and move on.

Outbid Notifications:

Sign up for Outbid Notifications. You can do this by logging into your website account. In your main account page click Outbid Notifications under Email Options. Several times before each auction we will send out emails notifying you if you have been outbid for an item. This allows you to increase your bid or find another item you wish to win.

5 Gun Auction Bidding Tips from CEO, Pat Hogan

Click to read.. We promise they’ll help.