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Aimpro
June 27, 2000, 06:50 PM
I recently obtained a nickel finish single action army model "Colt" It has matching serial numbers - 169550 and is barrel stamped "COLT'S PT FA. MFG. CO. HARTFORD CT. USA." according to the reference material I checked, this stamping idicates a rather rare London model. The problem is the revolver has a spring loaded cylinder axis pin button which is not consistant with that serial number. Is my standard catalog wrong or do I have a well made copy? (Even the face of the cylinder is stamped with the Colt logo.) If it's real, what is it really worth?

Jim V
June 27, 2000, 07:07 PM
Does it have SA in the serial number? If so where is it, at the start of the number, SAXXXXX or at the end, XXXXXXSA? London Colts were/are marked with a London address.

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Ne Conjuge Nobiscum
"If there be treachery, let there be jehad!"

Gunslinger
June 27, 2000, 07:45 PM
My reference indicate that it was manufactured in 1898. Colt did not start using the "SA" numbers until the second generation, post-war, examples beginning in 1956.
As Jim said the London models were so marked.
As to the spring loaded base pin release I'm not sure when Colt switched. I'm sure one of the other members will know. However I would not automatically think that based on this alone the gun is a fake.

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Gunslinger

Aimpro
June 28, 2000, 09:44 AM
The Standard Catalog of Firearms, (Krause Publications,) indicates that the SSA serial numbers run to 175000 in 1898 and then in 1899 start from 175001 and from there on, those SSA's incorporate the spring loaded axis pin retainer. The only other markings on the gun are the Colt patent numbers and dates, no London address. The catalog also indicates that this spring loaded retainer was only used after 1899. What do I have? Help!

Gunslinger
June 28, 2000, 12:24 PM
It would be my guess, and mind you this is only a guess, that at some point someone made an "improvement" on the gun you have. They have taken a gun originally equiped with the fixed base pin release and converted it to the spring loaded style.

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Gunslinger

Paul B.
June 28, 2000, 02:17 PM
According to the "TEXTBOOK OF PISTOLS AND REVOLVERS" by Julian hatcher, copywrite 1935, the changeover to the spring type cylinder release was at serial # 160,000 along with the change to smokelss powder.
Paul B.

Aimpro
June 28, 2000, 04:18 PM
If hatcher is accurate, then would this SSA be a pre-1899? And does the hatcher book indicate any London Issue markings? I have also been trying to find a copy of the Wilson book on Colt revolvers with no luck. Apparently it is considered the final word on old Colts. Anybody have one? Thanks for the help!