Just a couple thoughts on price and value. At 790$ or so, this ~1919-1930 wing sold for about 1/2 of what a really nice WWI (1917-1919) wing would be worth. Considering that the post WWI years had fewer pilots, the 1919 version of the pilot wing is actually rarer than the WWI variations.
I have seen the "From Official Dies" marked wings sell in the 500-1000$ range (and I have seen more of those than I have seen of this circle N hallmarked wings).
I have frequently seen WWII vintage Luxenberg wings sell for 500-600$ and they are much more common (in a relative sense) than the 1919 pattern wings.
Some of the very early, finely feathered wings and Robbins marked wings that can be dated to the mid-20's typically fall into the 200-500$ range.
In the rarity of the wings that were worn early after WWI, some patterns and makers seem more common than others (eg Kinney Co), and frankly, this is one wing maker I have never seen before. It would be hard to find another, I would suspect.
Finally, some thoughts on Ron Burkey and value. Ron is a heck of a nice guy and always willing to share his experience and advice (and I am not trying to say anything bad about him). While I have yet to buy a thing from him, be always has excellent items and I have heard and believe that he will always stand by his merchandise 100%. On the other hand, when judging "real value" I tend to use a basic rule of thumb when looking at Ron's prices, and figure about 50-70% of his asking price reflects the "market value" of the wings and 25-50% of his price reflect his reputation and integrity. So, if he sold one for around 900$, then a 790$ price tag isn't all that out of line.
One other thing I have seen people looking at a wing and say "Its a fake... I am 100% sure about that" and then someone says, "but I bought it from Ron (or Ron has one just like it, or Ron looked it over and said its good)"and the conversation immediately goes to "Well then, what a nice wing. I knew it was real all along". I have also seen it go the other way, where someone says "I bought this from the vet (dealer, neighbor, local ASMIC show) and know its real" to "Ron looked it over and gave it a thumbs down. "Well then, the vet must have bought a fake!". Not that there is anything wrong with that, as Ron is usually correct (but he can make mistakes sometimes).
Still, at the end of the day, that is a heck of a nice wing. Rare, hallmarked, well made, and likely worn during the early, golden days of American military aviation. We have a pinned thread on wings from this era.
Edited by pfrost, 22 December 2011 - 06:55 AM.