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Old March 10, 2013, 01:56 PM   #1
grizz223
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Colt offical Police problem

So I have a great looking Colt Offical Police in .38 Spl made in 1937. The pistol would not fuction properly. So I took it to a local smith who screwed it up even worse. Gun smith stated that the pawl that locks the cylinder in place was worn out even though the rest of the parts had almost zero wear.I get it back and the cylinder will not turn and he lost one of the screws. Needlees to say he will never touch another one of my guns.So does anyone know of a good smith that will work on Colts?.

Thanks for looking
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Old March 10, 2013, 02:13 PM   #2
salvadore
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What was the OP doing before you took it to the smith?
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Old March 10, 2013, 03:00 PM   #3
grizz223
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It was not locking up unless you went single action. It would turn but not lock up in double action. Now it won't do anything.
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Old March 10, 2013, 03:13 PM   #4
James K
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Finding a gunsmith who will/can work on those guns is hard. The few who can are thin on the ground and have stacked up work. (As you found out, some gunsmiths will not admit they can't fix something, so they try. And screw things up worse.)

I don't think Colt will even work on those old guns any more, but you can try calling them and maybe they have service locations. Another possibility is Cylinder and Slide, but they also are backed up.

Just FWIW, it was pretty common for brand new Colts to not fully lock up IF cocked slowly and the cylinder was retarded. They would lock up fine when the trigger was pulled through the final fraction of an inch and the firing pin strike would be centered. There has been a lot of bad advice "on the net" about those guns, to the effect that they should always lock up even if the cylinder is held back, and that any gun that fails that test is bad and must be worked on. Many times, the person who does the work makes things worse.

So, if the gun functioned and drew up when used normally (no pipe wrench on the cylinder) and the firing pin strikes were centered in the primer, the gun is/was OK.

Jim
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Old March 10, 2013, 03:19 PM   #5
grizz223
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Not what I wanted to hear but thank you for the response. It was passed down from an uncle who carried it when he was a police officer in the 60's. He wanted me to have it because i'm a Deputy sheriff. I really would like to see it fixed. I have another one but this one is special to me. Again thanks.
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Old March 10, 2013, 08:44 PM   #6
Dfariswheel
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Check with Colt and if they will no longer work on a gun that old, you can have it repaired at Cylinder & Slide Shop or Frank Glenn.

Cylinder & Slide is a nationally known custom shop. The work is top of the line, but prices are high and due to work load, turnaround may be slow.

http://www.cylinder-slide.com/

Frank Glenn has a national rep for Colt work. I don't know about his prices or turnaround times.

http://www.glenncustom.com/
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Old March 11, 2013, 07:08 AM   #7
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Sounds like the hand is worn and finding another hand could be a real adventure. It also appears that your cracker jack smith put it back together incorrectly. Does the side plate match up flush with the frame? As I remember the bolt is cammed by the hammer and I suppose something could have gone south there. If it turns out your hand is worn there are things you can do to 'fix' that I would try, but only because I don't know any better.

I tried to find a web picture of an OP or a python with the side plate removed but woas not successful.
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Old March 13, 2013, 09:58 AM   #8
James K
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The Colt bolt (cylinder stop) is cammed by the rebound lever which also cams the hammer back when the trigger is released and tensions the hand. It is a deceptively simple looking mechanism that is actually very complex.

Jim
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Old March 13, 2013, 05:52 PM   #9
bedbugbilly
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Don't have anything i can offer other than I'm sorry to hear of your experience with the "gunsmith" and the result in regards to your family heirloom. The OP is a nice pistol - I have the older brother, Army Special - same thing though. I really enjoy shooting it. Hopefully you can find someone who knows what they are doing in regards to a Colt and they can get if fixed up for you. Best of luck!
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Old March 14, 2013, 08:27 PM   #10
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You might contact Gary Roman, master gunsmith and co-owner of Firearms Service Center in Louisville. He does beautiful work on S&W and Ruger revolvers, and won't BS you about whether he can help with your Colt. In my experience his prices are quite reasonable, but I've only had him do trigger jobs on three Smiths.
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Old March 16, 2013, 10:53 AM   #11
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Grant Cunningham may be able to help you as he seems to know his way around Colts.
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Old March 16, 2013, 11:33 AM   #12
DPris
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Cunningham, IF he's currently accepting work, will take a year or two.
Best bet is to call Colt & see if they'll do the work.
Denis
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Old March 16, 2013, 09:05 PM   #13
oldgunsmith
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With the grips off, you can look closely on the right side and see the engagement areas of the rebound lever and cyl. stop. You can cycle the action and watch them interact. If the stop isn't picking up, releasing at the right time, and recovering, it still may need no more than a simple adjustment. Maybe not so simple depending on who's been jacking with it.
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Old March 18, 2013, 09:45 PM   #14
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FWIW, Mr. Jessie Smith of Smith Gun in TX did a nice job of retiming my 1922 Colt Army Special (essentially the same critter as the O.P.); might be worth a call.
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