Original U.S. Colt Frontier Six Shooter .44-40 Revolver with 7 1/2" Barrel & Ivory Grips made in 1881 - Serial 63392
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, and fantastic well aged and cracked ivory grips! The revolver's serial number is 63392, which is ALL MATCHING, built in 1881 with Assembly Number 3268 on loading gate.
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, especially on the ivory grips. They look to probably be Walrus ivory, but they could be true ivory, and have the proper layers that both would have.
The Colt address marking on the top of the barrel is still fully legible:
COLT'S PT. F. A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD. CT. U.S.A.
The left side of the frame has the Colt patent dates all clearly legible:
PAT. SEPT. 19. 1871.
* JULY. 2. --72.
* JAN. 19. --75.
As this revolver is in .44-40 and has a serial number between 45000 and 65000, it has the correct etched panel marking on the left side of the barrel, though it is faint, and needs to be held in the light to see:
COLT FRONTIER SIX SHOOTER
Colt considered these revolvers to be the same as the Single Action Army for record keeping, and they were grouped under the same serial number series. Between serial number 45000 and 65000, the "FRONTIER SIX SHOOTER" marking was etched onto the side of the barrel, but for many years it did not appear. This changed in 1889, when it returned, roll stamped onto all .44-40 versions of this revolver until the end of production.
The frame, grip, and trigger guard all bear the serial number clearly, so this pistol has definitely not been refinished at any time. The "Frontier Six Shooter" model was 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.
Mechanically, the action is smooth, with a good cylinder lock up, and crisp dry fire. The cylinder base pin slides out easily, allowing the cylinder to be removed for cleaning and inspection. The action has all four clicks with a functional loading position, and we have not noticed any of the usual finicky behavior of old revolvers. Really a great action on this example. The ejector door swings open easily, and the ejector is still present, though it currently gets stuck a bit, probably due to interference from the spring. The bore is in great shape, with clear rifling and a mostly bright finish. This is a revolver that looks to have been carried around extensively, but not actually fired that much.
Pistols such as this are extremely difficult to find today at any reasonable price, especially unmodified. This example is just ideal for any Wild West Collection! Ready to display and cherish for decades to come!
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: 1881
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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