One of Our Experts Is Missing

If you’re a fan of the break-out TV hit that is Pawn Stars then you’ve probably noticed something strange is afoot. One of the best parts of this guilty pleasure from the History Channel is when the gang at the World Famous Gold and Silver Pawn Shop call in experts to appraise rare or exotic items. Chumlee and the Old Man are wonderful TV personalities but so are many of the experts featured on the show. I always enjoy seeing Drew Max pull out his over-sized magnifying glass and confirm the value of Babe Ruth’s signature, or Danny Koker break the bad news to a customer that their custom-built trike just isn’t worth the $30,000 they were asking for.

Lately however, one of the show’s most well-known and loved experts has gone missing. Sean Rich is a Master Antique Gunsmith and has appeared in over 50 episodes of Pawn Stars since it debuted in 2009. He’s usually called in when the gang needs antique guns, swords or other armory appraised and his visits are always fun. For the last two seasons Rich has been the go-to guy for these types of appraisals, but he’s been completely absent from season 5 (and much of the last half of S4 as well). The producers started substituting other experts when Rick needed firearms appraised but they’re just not Rich. I knew something fishy was going on when Mark Hall-Patton, the beloved curator of the Clark County Museum System, was called in to appraise a rare LeMat pistol from the Civil War. This was an item that would have made Sean positively dance with glee, and yet here was Mark at the pawn store, looking over an item that was clearly out of his area of expertise. So what’s going on?

The last expert on Pawn Stars that suddenly took a hiatus from the show was Rick Dale, now the star of the spin off show American Restoration. Rick and his shop proved so popular that producers gambled viewers would watch a show just about restoring antique items, and they were right. American Restoration is a great show and Rick is a wonderful TV personality, but is the same thing about to happen with Sean Rich? I think it’s more likely that Sean is simply busy with another project that’s filling his time. Sean worked as a consultant on some of the Pirates of the Caribbean films and so I’m hoping that he’ll eventually return. In addition, Sean’s business Tortuga Trading Inc., is run out of his home and doesn’t have a traditional shop like Rick Dale that could be used as the basis for a new show. The only other explanation is that Sean and the show’s producers had a falling out, and I really hope that didn’t happen.

One of the things I love the most about Sean is how excited he gets to see a genuinely rare piece. He obviously has a great appreciation for history as he often explains in geeky detail what makes a firearm valuable and I must admit his enthusiasm is infectious. Before Pawn Stars came along, I really didn’t know anything about antique guns or why they were awesome but thanks to Rick Dale and Sean Rich I now have a greater appreciation for the value of these fine pieces of history. Here’s hoping Sean eventually emerges from some dusty tomb or secret Hollywood film set and takes his occasional place along side Rick, Corey and the Old Man yet again.

Update: Thanks to an email sent by another curious fan, we now have the answer of what happened to Sean on Pawn Stars. Seems as though the executives at the History Channel and the production company behind Pawn Stars wanted to lock Sean down into an exclusive arrangement for his appearances and offered him little or no money. He refused and so they replaced him. Damn shame, I was afraid of something like this. Thanks a lot History Channel, this is why we can’t have nice things. 🙁

Update II: After two full years, it appears Sean Rich is back on Pawn Stars. Sean briefly appeared on the Oct, 2nd 2014 episode and was brought in to appraise a colt firearm. I was astonished to see him again and stricken by the fact that absolutely no mention was made about why he had been away or why he didn’t receive a nice “Welcome back, Sean!” from Rick or the guys. It seems like The History Channel wants to pretend he never left. Hopefully he’s back for good. Fingers are crossed.


  1. i wonder- can’t Rick pay somthing to Sean out of his own pocket? the pawn stars guys made enogh money these days thanks to him.

  2. It’s a shame that the show that has made its stars millions would not do something to keep Sean on the show, how greedy are these people. Nobody can bring the enjoyment that Sean brought to the show with his big magnifying glass. Get him back!!!!!

  3. May i LOVE Shawn. I hate that they didnt offer him enough money to stay on the show. i dont like the new guy at all. Bugs me… they are making money on the show so pay the good guys to stay on!!

  4. I don’t think any of the other gun experts even compare to Sean, I loved his enthusiasm whenever he walked through the door. It’s sad that he won’t be back. I will certainly miss him.

  5. Hey producers, you are killing a show buy trying to lock up one of the experts. I am sure you are putting the cash in your pocket and not paying your crew more. Produce means keeping the show going not killing it with product placement of subway or replacing Sean.

  6. The only thing that keeps this show on the air is Chumlee and the Old Man! Both Rick with his know everything do anything attitude and his son big horse Cory, his attitude is the worst on the show. If he was my kid I would have fired him the first time he talked down to the Old Man. But, thank god he not my kid!
    The use of the experts???
    I guy comes in to the store with an 18 century rifle. After making the seller feel like a complete incompident Rick tells him ” let me call in one of my buddy’s to see what he thinks” the guy says ok! Rick goes off screen and we presume he went to call him. The reality could very well be, hey buddy I got this guy in the store with this 18 century he hasn’t a clue the gun is worth $10,000. When you come in tell him it’s worth $1,000. I’ll buy it for $500. And you and I will split the profits when I sell the gun.
    Now this is as real as when you bring an item into the store and tell them “I was there when he signed it you don’t need an expert ” of course they say they don’t know the person therefore he’s a lire until proven otherwise by one of their buddies!

  7. I spent this week reviewing the Pawn Stars show.
    Let me just say these guys are so full of themselves it really is discussting!
    I truly believe the use of there experts “BUDDIES” flys in the face of good and proper business. It really looks as though some of these experts on not only Ricks buddies but business partners.
    It’s not only possible but highly probable that these so called experts are being paid off to say what Rick or fat boy I mean Horse I mean Cory wants them to say!
    This show is nothing but BULLSHIT!
    Last, now THE OLD MAN CHUMLEE SHOW may have a chance. Get rid of both Rick and Shithead I mean BIG HORSE, I MEAN FAT BOY, I MEAN CORY. Do that you might have something good to watch.

  8. The show is so Crooket with these so called experts that the show and it’s producers need to be exposed!
    I would even go as far as saying the DA’s office in La Vegas need to take a look at this company!
    By far the worst of the worst!

  9. I really enjoyed Sean’s extensive knowledge and his genuine appreciation of each piece. He has a very energetic, very honest, and very personable way of explaining the mechanical aspects of each piece as well as it’s historical application and significance. Losing Sean is a true and heavy loss for the show. Give the viewers what they want… The show has been a tremendous success. Why take away from a great thing that works and keeps people watching. Spending a few extra dollars to make your fans happy makes a statement that the network genuinely cares for the fans. Something you guys may want to consider before making such decisions in the future

    Eddie Kendrick

  10. I really enjoyed the show at the start of the series, but lately it has become really bad I think. I think that the people got their own show’s kissed the stars butts also they bit their lips to get their own show. The thing is that Sean Rich and Dana are the best of what they know, but the thing is that they are not getting what they are worth. I hope someone gets both back because I think that they and the people that are coming in are a joke!

  11. Hello, I starting to believe the show might be a little fake because 1 episode a Guy came in with a refrigerator for sale said he could not do anything with it to fix it up r something to that nature when all along it was Rick Dale’s brother from American Restoration why didn’t he have his brother fix it.

  12. Sean is easily the MOST HANDSOME guy on Pawn Stars. History Channel should bring him back for their female viewers. 😉

  13. Hello, I love the show Pawn Stars even though I feel that much of the show is BS. I think many of the items that come in are a set up just for the show to keep on the air and suck the viewers in as it has and also keep its success up and going season after season as it has.
    I do miss Sean Rich being on the show and I think he did a fine job and really a lot better job than his replacements are doing. He always had detailed information and showed pride and enthusiasm in his work and made the show a little more fun to watch.
    You might know that the greedy producers of the show would offer someone like him little or no money to do a job that they know nothing about. There is an ole saying ” You get what You Pay For ” and the producers are getting just that ” Nothing ” — I say make Sean Rich a contract & offer to make his time worthwhile and everybody will be happy.
    Signed: Clary McGee — South Carolina

  14. I believe that Sean missing has left a HUGE hole in the show. He was the most watchable, believable of all of the experts called in by the Pawn crew. With both Rick Dale and the Count getting spin-off shows, I can only hope that Sean can get a deal with someone else since this production company has decided to not treat him fairly. Too bad–good guy!

  15. A darn shame. Sean was one of the best experts on this show, for all the reasons stated above. I’ll add my voice to the chorus – please bring him back.

  16. @ john adwalter, why would sean or any of the experts lie to a customer and tell them a $10,000 item was worth $1,000. Firstly, most of the items brought in are set up already with the producers, meaning, the show is scripted. So people generally already know what thier items are worth, if the items even really belong to them. Some of the items are provided by the producers, and the people are actors. With that said, another reason the experts wouldnt lie on purpose to make more money is because thier reputation is on the line, not to metion the possibility of criminal charges. Lots of people watch the show, and someone out there is bound to notice a $10,000 gun being appraised for $1,000. Asside from being on the show, most of the experts have thier own businesses which im sure they dont want to jeopardize by being caught lying.

  17. Our family misses seeing Sean Rich, also. He was the best part of the Pawn Stars. He made it fun and interesting. The show isn’t the same this season….we will probably stop watching….it’s “staged” and lame. Sean Rich should get his own show! We’d watch that!!

  18. well they could save some money getting rid of the idiot chumlee and pay it to Sean. I have been in business for years and if I had an employee that talked to me like chumlee talks to the harrisons he would of been FIRED years ago!!

  19. I loved Sean, and being a history major, it was pure joy to see his face with the episode when they shot the Gatling gun. I did both of my dissertations on weapons of the Romans and of the dark ages’ I am also a civil war nut. I wish he was back.

  20. Sometimes people feel like They are worth more then they actually are. Just because he comes on the show periodically he is most likely being compensated for his time.. just the mere fact that he is able to advertise his own company through one of the most popular tv shows on one of the biggest networks should be enough in itself..

    But none the less he was a likable character and so I was wondering what happened to him. I still hope they can come to an agreement because it’s a shame that he’s not on the show because of money for they seemed like they were good friends with him and it hinders the validity of a reality show to see that it’s not the case in real life.

  21. Yes Sean was the only expert I liked. He know his stuff. Why are the producers so cheap. Pay the guy. The last guy I want to see talk about guns is Mark. When you have experts on the show show some respect and pay them. The producers are just thinking about profit for themselves.

  22. Sean was good with American guns and sons of gUns on discovery I doubt whether there is a need for another gun smithing show but then you yanks are mad for your guns as Michael Moore exposed us Brits found bowling for columbine quite scary but the point is tv execs find something good and roll with it till people stop watching my apologies for Simon Crowell he is the master of said art so I’m guessing sometime in the new year Sean will have his own show consigning pawn star guns in leather holsters restored by rick dale delivered in a model t restored by the count

  23. It sucks as Shawn was a part of what made the show great.

    Greedy production companys and networks are killing shows just like Obama is killing capitalist America with his socialism and self centered garbage.

  24. Little John, your post is pretty much self contradicting and waaayyy off point .. you make it embarrassing to be a conservative … Conservatism is more threatened by simple minded christo-fascist nut jobs than by any liberal out there….

  25. I used to watch the show all the time . I finally got tired of Corey being such a CREEP and Rick acting like he’s an authority on every thing thats brought in the shop. People bring in stuff that they have most likely have checked into and know everything about the item , but Rick trys to be so smart and tells the customer every thing the customers alredy know . This show sucks and I stopped watching it . Not only that but HISTORY channel keeps playing the same BS episodes over and over instead of showing programs that are history oriented the way it should be

  26. Sean’s business is based out of his home is what I read somewhere in the story… If you check out Tortuga Trading you’ll notice that its based in Encinitas, CA. Which is a nice little distance from Vegas, 320 miles.

  27. Pawn Stars has jumped the shark. It will be a slow but steady downward fall from here. Time to lock these meatheads up the Amercian Chopper idiots. Sean rocked. History channel, you suck, and stop showing alligators and other animals getting killed!

  28. Craig Gottliebs back room dealings he does almost got him killed in a shady deal when he took advantage of swedish men an the deal turned out supposedly that he knowingly knew the items to be incorrect thus taking the peoples money and they confronted him with violent intentions. I have dealt with him one time an his story of the item turned out to be untrue an the item was returned an money refunded but the story was deceitful. Now my trust in him plus his arrogant demeanor just makes me NOT want to deal him again.Trust is everything.

  29. Sean Rich was the best thing about Pawn Stars. Perhaps some felt threaten. Sean was truly entertaining and he made the show fun. Too bad he is gone. Good luck to him. Shame on show if they did not want to pay him.

  30. I thought maybe Rick Harrison and Sean had a falling out. Do not like the Count, very predictable, kind of like Troy Aikman. I dont like the curator for not giving prices. Not a Cory fan and CHUMLEE is the star!!! But bring Sean Back!!!

  31. I really think it is a shame not to have Sean on the show over money. This begs the question of are they paying other people like Mark more money? Or are they taking advantage of all the great professional appraisers. This is the history channel and to be able to hear the history of a gun as aposed to it’s a gun. Is one of the reasons that a history lover like my selfs watches the programs so faithfully . History channel fix this or you might find out if you keep this up you might not have a show to worry about.

  32. Finally decided to google what happened to Sean. Obviously, he is very well liked and I am not the only one to miss him. Before the shop was televised, he would have been paid by the shop for his expertise. It seems only fair to be continue to be paid a fair amount. It is detremental to the show to have lost him. I would not be suprised if the ratings and viewship decline.

  33. “Hello Rachel and Rob,
    Thank you for the e-mail. At the moment: Unfortunately, to make a very long story short, the production company and History Channel wanted me to sign an ‘exclusivity agreement’ to lock me down, control me, my business, future, my appearance, how I make a living to provide for my family, and expect me to do it for free or very little money without any negotiation (with no guarantee of being used !). So basically, I told them to ‘go pound sand…’
    Please understand, that my decision has nothing to do with Rick and the Harrison’s, I love those guys. It is the unfortunate nature of the production company and Network greed when they have a successful show. Who knows, if enough fans cry out, maybe they will get the message and come back to the table of ‘reality’…
    Thank you for your support !
    Sean Rich
    TortugaTrading Inc.”

  34. I don’t think this is really about MONEY! Has anyone else noticed American Guns and Son’s of Gun’s have also disappeared or got canceled? I think there is a lot more to this story. Is there a chance that this can all be part of taking away your gun rights, possibly more? Is this really about CONTROL? After all in Sean’s own words he stated, “lock me down, control me, my business” etc. The media is easily controlled but how far does this really go?

  35. Half of the fun of seeing Sean on the show is hearing him describe these elaborate scenarios before they fired the antique gun. It’s usually specific to the type and period of the gun used. You can’t replace that kind of awesome!

  36. I agree with the others. Bring both Sean and Dana back!!! The show is much more enjoyable with their visits.

  37. The program is worthless without Sean, so I see no more, was so unique that I saw, the rest does not interest me anything. The only cute shop.
    Sean you’re handsome and super good! By by Pawns Shop!

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