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Old June 30, 2013, 05:25 PM   #1
magnum777
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Question about the Colt Python

I have always heard that the Colt Python was the Rolls Royce or Cadillac of revolvers. I heard about the smooth trigger pull, accuracy, the great look of the gun. I have never had the pleasure to shoot one myself. I just wanted to know from other people who have used it, how they feel about the Python.
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Old June 30, 2013, 07:38 PM   #2
bipe215
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Magnum,

Do a search of this forum and you will find more than you want to know about the Python. You will also find how upset folks get over the 'which is best' when it comes to wheel guns.

Steve
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Old June 30, 2013, 07:41 PM   #3
DaleA
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If you’re just looking for general gun lore opinions I can be of help.

The Colt Python and the Smith and Wesson Model 27 are the top of the heap (maybe I should say the epitome) of revolvers. Which one is better? I’m not going to get into that discussion for love nor money.

I have handled both a lot but only ONE Python and ONE S&W Model 27 so that does NOT give me much of a claim to an opinion but since you asked here it is.

Both the guns were EXCEPTIONALLY well finished and both worked as smooth as could be. Both were a joy to shoot. It might be heresy but I liked Pachmeyer grips on the Python better than the stock grips but I’ll admit the stock grips look better.

It makes me sad that you just can’t save up and order a new Python. It’s a personal thing but since they’re not making them any more I’m reluctant to shoot one ‘cause there’s only so much “Python Goodness” left in the world. I have no trouble with people that do shoot them because that is after all what they are for, but I would be uncomfortable buying one now. Plus the price is out of sight.

One way to look at it would be how much fun would you have driving a Porsche or a Ferrari around town? Some might have a blast, some would be too worried about dings, accidents, over reving the engine etc to have a good time with one.

Here’s a couple recent threads about just what you were asking for:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/show...ghlight=python

http://thefiringline.com/forums/show...ghlight=python
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Old June 30, 2013, 07:57 PM   #4
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I've had a Python and S&W M 27. Both shot good and it's hard to decide which one I liked better. Liked the recessed chambers in the Smith better. The Pythons cost a lot more used than the Smiths. Local paper had a Python for sale for 1700. Don't know if it sold but the ad was only for two days then cancelled.
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Old June 30, 2013, 08:49 PM   #5
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I've got a couple. A six incher and a four inch. I don't fire them much, but I can say when you cock the python, it's like butter. And single action trigger let off is pretty remarkable for a stock gun.

Double action trigger pull "stacks." Dunno why that is.

I've heard the action is delicate and tempermental. Like I said, I don't shoot them much.

They're nice guns to own, but I dunno 'bout spending today's prices for one.
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Old June 30, 2013, 09:31 PM   #6
Bob Wright
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I've had considerable experience with each. Both are extremely well made and well finished revolvers, as you said the "Rolls Royce or Cadillac of revolvers."

But, when Smith & Wesson introduced their Distinguished Combat Magnum, the Model 586, I went to this and never looked back. I had been shooting a very heavy (173 gr.) bullet with stout charges of H110 and #2400 powder in my Ruger Blackhawk, and this round would not chamber in either the Python nor the Model 27, without poking its nose out the front of the cylinder.

Maybe not the equal in finish, but I believe the Model 586 to be the best DA .357 Magnum to come out yet.

And, it ain't all that bad looking, either.

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Old July 3, 2013, 11:33 AM   #7
ClydeFrog
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Colt Pythons....

The Colt Python is a legend in the US shooting sports industry for good reason.
If you see any decent Pythons at gun shows or used models in gun stores they run anywhere from $2000.00 to $3500.00 depending on the condition.
Colt Mtg in Hartford CT had highly skilled labor & craftsmen who turned out the Pythons for decades.
As a recent topic stated, the Colt staff started to retire/leave & the machines started to age/break down. This led Colt Defense to cut the highly respected DA Pythons. They ended the mid-price King Cobra .357magnum & Anaconda .44magnum lines too.

If you want to review the Colt Python models in popular Hollywood film/TV series see; www.imfdb.org .

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Old July 3, 2013, 12:43 PM   #8
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Its a great revolver, but its not head and shoulders above other revolvers, such as a S&W Registered Magnum. I should know...
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Old July 3, 2013, 01:05 PM   #9
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With its vented top rib and full bottom lug, Colt Royal Blue (or Nickle), it was and is Drop-Dead Gorgeous! However, the lock-work leaves much to be desired. Follow the link below for what I mean (The Colt Police-Positive's lock-work is virtually identical to the Python's). Notice the posts about the things that could and will go wrong, and the critical fit the components have to have. The S&W's on the other hand, except for the fit between the sear and the single action hammer notch, is pretty forgiving if not outright trouble-free, or in the very least, easy to fix.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=527513

I have worked on several S&W double-actions, and can attest that they are much more easy to get a superb double-action pull, have more and varied parts available. For the S&W, you can buy "kits" with three or so different weights of mainsprings, and rebound slide springs. Also, one can swap out hammers (wide spur-narrow spur) and triggers (wider-narrower). Furthermore, should something break/need replacing, you are more likely to find the parts you need for a S&W than a Colt Python...look in the listing for Colts/Pythons in Gun Parts Corp's parts lists and see what I mean.
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Old July 3, 2013, 03:08 PM   #10
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Python vs S&W model 27's....I prefer the model 27's because they fit my hands better...and the double action trigger pull on the S&W is better than the Colt....

but I'm nit picking here....because they're both solid guns !

Colt will cost you more money ...
Depends on what you like esthetically...
Colt name & legend ....vs S&W name & egend.../ its a toss up in my mind..

Buy one - or 2 or 3 ...of each...
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Old July 3, 2013, 06:01 PM   #11
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My local dealer has a 6" blue Python in near mint condition. I tried it today. They actually let me not just hold it, but dry fire it because I had caps with me. The action is swe-e-et! I think it beats both of my model 17 and model 66. The gun seems to be a bit muzzle heavy, but not enough to cause a discomfort. What a great gun... until you see a $2200 price tag....
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Old July 3, 2013, 10:31 PM   #12
357 Python
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I have 2 Pythons, a S&W 28 and a S&W 686. I have carried a 6" Python, 4" S&W 28, and a 4" S&W 686 as my duty weapon at different times (in that order). The Python is my favorite just for personal reasons. The ohers are just as good in my opinion. If I had to go back to a revolver for duty use I would use my 686. It is the same size as a 4" Python and there are more gunsmiths that can work on them. The Python takes a real Colt Specialist to work on them. Performance wise all of them will out shoot me. The trigger on the Python is completely different from the S&Ws. It is stacked (more heavy) toward the end where the S&Ws are consistant through out the entire pull. Some people don't like the Python trigger but to someone who understands the difference it is no problem at all.
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Old July 3, 2013, 10:43 PM   #13
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Most civil Python thread ever.
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Old July 3, 2013, 11:10 PM   #14
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As noted the Python was the top of the Colt line. As such it is often compared to the S&W M27. I love my 27s and have several, but the Python edges it in fit, finish and detail. The Python was made to be a deluxe revolver in every way and it is. With used ones selling for $2,000+ I can't believe Colt can't new ones that will sell for a profit.

Just my opinion. On forums like this one about 99% of posters prefer the S&W.

I believe the Python is the finest production revolver in the world. Hard to beat these.






But I also love my 27s (and pre-model variants).





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Old July 4, 2013, 12:00 PM   #15
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Quote:
... I love my 27s and have several, but the Python edges it in fit, finish and detail...
Are you admitting then, that your liking of the Python is based on aesthetics?
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Three shots are not a "group"...they are a "few".

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Old July 4, 2013, 12:35 PM   #16
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Mostly, yes. But I think the Colt is also smoother in function. Most guys seem to prefer the action of the S&W but I think this is because the Colt trigger system feels alien to them. Doesn't bother me.

The 6" Python pictured above shot this group. I cannot do this well with any of my 27s.

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Old July 4, 2013, 02:16 PM   #17
BigJimP
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and the great thing is - we don't have to agree / and we can each shoot the Python or S&W Model 27 ( or 28 ) of our choice....

I think a model 27-2 in Nickel, especially in a 4" , is a hard gun to beat in terms of fit and finish by any Python...
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Old July 4, 2013, 02:47 PM   #18
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Personal preferences. Like I said, I have seen and participated in this debate dozens of times over the years and in the end 99% of posters absolutely insist the 27 is better, or least that it is the equal of the Python.

But I know the Python was hand polished and holding both in my hands I can clearly see the Python finish is nicer than any Smith.
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Old July 4, 2013, 02:57 PM   #19
FoghornLeghorn
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I saw you that day. You were what, about ten feet from the target?

(Kidding.) My best group ever w/my 6 inch Python was a two handed standing hold using handloaded target ammo (148 grain WC). At 25 yards, 2.4 inches for three shots.

My son has laid claim on that gun many times. Someday I might break down and give it to him. I had my initials (his initials also) engraved on the side and it's got Herrett's Trooper stocks in highly figured walnut with fine line checkering.

Quote:
The 6" Python pictured above shot this group. I cannot do this well with any of my 27s.
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Old July 4, 2013, 03:16 PM   #20
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My first gun was a Colt Python. 6", Blue. I purchased it 8/19/1983 - one week after my 21st birthday. Took delivery of it 9/3/83. Other than shooting a couple single-action .22's, I had no handgun (or any type, for that matter) experience. I just knew that I wanted one. I was looking for a .38 Special in a 6" barrel. I quickly learned that .38's were rarely produced with barrels longer than 3", and for a longer barrel, go with a .357. (I knew nothing about guns, basically.) Once I realized I needed a .357, I immediately gravitated to that beautiful Python on display. I bought it for $449.95 - big dollars for a 21 year-old kid in '83.

At the time, I didn't appreciate just how nice of a gun I bought. Having NO experience, I had nothing with which to compare it. Trying to shorten the story here (too late! lol), I did enjoy shooting it, and put lots of rounds through it. I didn't really appreciate it at the time, but the trigger is absolutely smooth as silk. It really is a Cadillac revolver.

I later got a Smith 686, and it quickly became my gun of choice. That was because the Smith was stainless and thus, more durable; and it fit better in my small hand. The Python's handle sits farther back - good for large hands, not so good for small.

I still have my Python and it's a safe queen. I haven't fired it in a couple decades - literally. But this September 3rd, I am taking it out to the range for a 30-year anniversary shoot.
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Old July 4, 2013, 06:44 PM   #21
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I have never owned a Python and have passed a few up in the last couple of years that were priced less than $800. I just for the life of me can't get past the looks. I've never liked the look of the factory grips or the vent rib. Obviously they are top notch revolvers, but...

Quote:
With used ones selling for $2,000+ I can't believe Colt can't new ones that will sell for a profit.
I started a thread on this subject and most folks said there was no way they could do it. I still don't get it.
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Old July 4, 2013, 06:57 PM   #22
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I bought an 8" python once with Elliason sights and factory tuned. The barrel cylinder gap was .009 and it spit out the sides like crazy. I contacted Colt and they said that it was within specs. The double action on most I've tried leave a lot to be desired and stack up pretty bad, but the single action is okay. I have never been crazy about the grips on Pythons either. All in all, I think the Smiths are head and shoulders better than the pythons....but they do put a high polish on the Colts before they blue them. If you are just looking for a shiny revolver, the Colt will fit the bill.
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Old July 4, 2013, 07:09 PM   #23
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I prefer to shoot my revolvers in double action...so that is part of why the scales tip to the S&W model 27's for me over the Python.

If I wanted a Python, I'd pay what it takes to have one....(and I've come close a few times to doing it / and may still do it one of these days...)...with my collection of S&W's in model 18's, 19's, 27's, 28's, 29's, 66's, 686's, 629's at about 25 guns, I have about everything I want in the S&W line of revolvers....but I can't rationalize why the Python demands so much of a premium over the model 27's either...

To spend $ 2,500 on a Python....it's about 2/3 of what it would cost me to add another Freedom Arms single action to my collection...and another Freedom Arms might be a gun I'd like better in the long run ( I have one Freedom Arms in .357 Mag now a 4 3/4", but adding a companion gun in
.45 Colt or even .44 Mag might be fun ). ??? so I don't know if I'll ever break loose the money on a Python or not....
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Old July 4, 2013, 08:41 PM   #24
bob kk
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I had forgot about looking at Pythons at a discount chain store. They were 135 dollars. I didn't buy one. That was in the mid 60's. I even remember when Luger's and P38's were in the 25 dollar range. Think my M19 cost me about 215 new.
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Old July 4, 2013, 08:57 PM   #25
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Quote:
But I know the Python was hand polished and holding both in my hands I can clearly see the Python finish is nicer than any Smith.
See pic below. Its not photoshopped either - it might not be a "Royal" blue, but its sure majestic to my eye

Top - 1951 model 357 (pre 27) and bottom a 1955 model 357 (pre 27) - I have a letter on the top gun.

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