Gun buyback working because 'people just want to do the right thing' - police

Police hope firearm owners who have had a positive experience with the buyback scheme will spread the word to others.

Seven-hundred people attended collection events throughout the country on Saturday, and more than 1000 firearms were handed in. More than $1.7 million was compensated to owners.

Southern District Commander Paul Basham was pleased with the steady turnout in Dunedin, deeming it a success.

"The systems have worked. I think people overall have interacted really well with us, and been broadly happy with the outcome - particularly in terms of some of the price points that have been offered for the weapons."

Collection events were held in Te Aroha, Ohope, Hastings, Palmerston North, Upper Hutt, Hokitika, Rolleston and Dunedin. Well over 2000 parts and accessories were also handed in on Saturday nationwide.

Basham was pleased to see more than 100 people turn out in his patch, despite many having a "sentimental attachment" to their weapons.

"Overwhelmingly, people just want to do the right thing."

He said having a barbeque cranking and hot drinks on offer helped.

"As word gets out it is a positive experience in terms of the engagement with us... and the compensation that's being offered by way of the schedule, hopefully that will have a positive impact."