Original U.S. Antique Colt Frontier Six Shooter .44-40 Revolver with 7 1/2" Barrel made in 1884 - Serial 108427
Original Items: Only One Set Available. This is it! Every young "Old West" fans dream: A real Colt Cowboy Six-shooter! This very nice Colt Frontier Six Shooter SAA (Single Action Army) Revolver has a full length 7 1/2" barrel, with the standard blued finish, and nicely worn original walnut grips. The revolver's serial number is 108427, marked on the frame and trigger guard, built in 1884.
The revolver is in very nice "frontier used" condition, sure to delight any Americana Collector. The blued finish has worn down to a lovely dull gray patina, with a great look. It is in full working Order and Condition, showing a gorgeous patina of age.
The markings on the top of the barrel are faint, though still fully legible:
COLT'S PT. F. A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD. CT. U.S.A.
The frame is stamped CAL 44 on the side, indicating the .44-40 WCF caliber, though this is definitely not an original Colt Marking. The revolver definitely was reconditioned at some point, and the stamping added to indicate the caliber. The "Frontier Six Shooter" model was mostly identical to the .45 "Long Colt" chambered Single Action Army model, except that it was designed for Winchester .44-40 ammunition, also called .44 W.C.F., which was and is a popular "cowboy" ammunition. While some may question why colt made guns chambered for a competitor's cartridge, having a repeating rifle and revolver that took the same ammunition was a big selling point.
As this revolver was manufactured in 1884, it never had an etched panel that read "Colt Frontier Six Shooter", as the serial number range for such marked revolvers was between 45000 and 65000. Revolvers like this were marketed to the civilian frontier market, as the U.S. Cavalry issued the identical model finished in blue.
The original blued finish has faded to a lovely gray patina over the entire gun, giving it a great vintage look. There is some overall peppering to the revolver from removed surface rust. The walnut grips are worn, with some dents but no major cracks, and have a very comfortable rounded feel.
Mechanically, the action is smooth, with a good cylinder lock up, and crisp dry fire. The action has all four clicks, though as with any revolver of this age, it can be finicky, and sometimes the cylinder lock is weak. The bore is nice, with clear lands and grooves and a partly bright finish, showing past oxidation. The ejector door swings open easily, and the ejector itself works great. Overall this is a great pistol with loads of patina and history.
Pistols such as this are extremely difficult to find today at any reasonable price. This example is just ideal for any Wild West Collection. A great collector's revolver, ready to display.
History of the Colt Single Single Action Army
Bound by the Rollin White patent (#12,648, April 3, 1855) and not wanting to pay a royalty fee to Smith & Wesson, Colt could not begin development of bored-through revolver cylinders for metallic cartridge use until April 4, 1869. For the design, Colt turned to two of its best engineers: William Mason and Charles Brinckerhoff Richards who had developed a number of revolvers and black powder conversions for the company. Their effort was designed for the United States government service revolver trials of 1872 by Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company and adopted as the standard military service revolver. Production began in 1873 with the Single Action Army model 1873, also referred to as the "New Model Army Metallic Cartridge Revolving Pistol".
The very first production Single Action Army, serial number 1, thought lost for many years after its production, was found in a barn in Nashua, New Hampshire in the early 1900s. It was chambered in .45 Colt, a centerfire design containing charges of up to 40 grains (2.6 g) of fine-grained black powder and a 255-grain (16.5 g) blunt roundnosed bullet. Relative to period cartridges and most later handgun rounds, it was quite powerful in its full loading.
The Colt Single Action Army revolver, along with the 1870 and 1875 Smith & Wesson Model 3 "Schofield" revolver, replaced the Colt 1860 Army Percussion revolver. The Colt quickly gained favor over the S&W and remained the primary US military sidearm until 1892 when it was replaced by the .38 Long Colt caliber Colt Model 1892, a double-action revolver with swing-out cylinder. By the end of 1874, serial no. 16,000 was reached; 12,500 Colt Single Action Army revolvers chambered for the .45 Colt cartridge had entered service and the remaining revolvers were sold in the civilian market.
The Colt .45 is a famous piece of American history, known as "The Gun That Won the West". The Single Action army is a very popular firearm, even today, and it continues to be produced in various configurations.
Year of Manufacture: 1884
Caliber: .44-40 Winchester
Ammunition Type: Centerfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 7 1/2 inches
Overall Length: 13 inches
Action: Single Action
Feed System: 6 Shot Revolver
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