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Friend was offered a 226 and sent me this photo he was given. Look like rust? Or something easily treated/not to worry about? Or should he pass. Its an older gun about 1990. Thanks.
 

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Very well could be... that is a carbon steel slide, and in an area if worn concealed, could have been against owners sweaty side. A little light oil and 0000 steel wool will make it disappear most likely. Not a sufficient reason to turn it away, if gotten for the right price! Slides can be refinished easily, if desired... frames on the other hand are anodized and a lot trickier... people who are "ring bearers" can seriously scar the anodizing on the frame, as bad or worse than it taking a "skip" along some concrete!!
 

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Some of the old carbon steel slide SIGs were sold in boxes lined with red velvet.

If that gun is one of them and the seller stores the gun in the box, what looks like rust could just be velvet fibers. I've seen that before.

That said, I think SIG had phased out the red velvet by 1990, and that does kinda look more like rust.
 

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We see this very often. Have him use 000 steel wool and some good oil don't be too aggressive on it. They keep it well oiled even wet till he decides what he is going to do with it
 

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Here's a photo of the entire side. W German with proof marks. Its offered at 600. Thoughts?
I wouldn't pay that for a rusty 226. There's plenty of nicer ones out there at that price.
 
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$600 is way too much. The frame has wear marks all over, the grips look beat up, the lower grip screw looks like a dog was chewing on it and besides the rust on the rear of the slide it looks like there is some pitting starting above the 'INC'. A look at the barrel and rails would tell us more but from what I see it's a sub $400 gun IMO.
 
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