View Full Version : Colt 1860 Army

February 20, 2011, 06:43 PM
I need some help with this pistol. I recently inherited this pistol and it would be nice if someone could give me an estamate on what it is worth. It doesnt have to be exact just close enough to give me some idea. I have seen these range from $1000 to $20,000 and higher.
The serial numbers are all matching, 182659. The handle is made of Ivory and it is engraved with a cowboy on one side and a ranch scene in the other. The bluing is near perfect except on the cilinder, but the spare one has perfect bluing. It has an extra walnut grip and comes with a bullet mold. It also has a powder "dispenser" (Sorry I cant remember the technical term right now). All of this is encased in a lined walnut box with a key. I know it is the three screw model an it was made sometime in 1869 based on the serial number. Since it is a Colt 1860 army it's also a .44 cal.

February 20, 2011, 07:19 PM
If the number on one of the cylinders matches the gun it will be worth more. If the grips are real elephant ivory it will be worth more, especially with the walnut grips included. The presentation case if original brings the value up also. certainly worth more than 1,000. Closer to 5,000 in my book but I may be off.

February 21, 2011, 12:44 AM
If you ever take it apart, look down the barrel to confirm that it has progressive rifling. The rifling on the originals started out as a slow twist near the breach that became tighter as it approached the muzzle. If you don't want to knock it apart I understand as it is in beautiful shape. It looks almost too good to be true.

February 21, 2011, 06:53 AM
looks like it has the notches behind the cylinder for the shoulder stock. if so it raises the value quite a bit. have been told? that one with original stock can be worth as much as 25k.:eek:

Ben Towe
February 21, 2011, 07:56 AM
Holy smoke.:eek: If that is really all original then it is a jewel. I offer $1000 cash money:p.

February 21, 2011, 08:11 AM
The wedge doesn't look to be original.......


February 21, 2011, 06:15 PM
looks like it has the notches behind the cylinder for the shoulder stock. if so it raises the value quite a bit. have been told? that one with original stock can be worth as much as 25k.

It's not a four screw frame tho so no way to mount a stock.

February 21, 2011, 06:33 PM
Front sight is not original either. :eek:

February 21, 2011, 06:44 PM
Front sight is not original either.

No it's not.

February 21, 2011, 06:55 PM
I also don't see the usual Colt markings on the left side of the frame. I'm very skeptical that this is the real thing. More than likely a defarbed repro.

February 21, 2011, 07:32 PM
It's not a four screw frame tho so no way to mount a stock.

Some Colts used a special extended hammer screw to secure the stock.

Check out this from The High Road.


February 21, 2011, 07:36 PM
Some Colts used a special extended hammer bolt to secure the stock.

Then it wouldn't need the cut outs in the recoil shields.

February 21, 2011, 10:19 PM
The extended screw takes the place of the 4th screws. The cut outs are still required.

February 21, 2011, 10:46 PM
I am not an expert on this but very interested + listening. that being said, I do know one of the first questions the appraiser is going to ask:

is this box and contents the originals?

that would definately bring the value way up+might be the least likely. If it is indeed the case I think there is a good chance lots of the other stuff mentioned will ring true too. good luck. what a great firearm+piece of history. maybe you can get some authenticity letters and put some kind of official story with it(as well as a name).

February 28, 2011, 08:27 PM
All the markings that are on "real" colts are there. Ps... What does it mean if the colt is martially marked and what indicates this?

February 28, 2011, 08:33 PM
How come they aren't in the pictures then?

February 28, 2011, 08:34 PM
What does it mean if the colt is martially marked and what indicates this?

it means it was inspected for use by the military and if so will have a cartouche on the grips with the inspectors initials.

February 28, 2011, 08:49 PM
This one has that. It has the thing on the wood grip and it has the inspectors markings. And thank you all for the replies to this post.

March 1, 2011, 04:42 AM
It may be the quality of the photograph, but that barrel sure looks reblued to me.:confused:

March 2, 2011, 11:52 AM
The gun most likely is an old original Colt m1860. It has however been heavily restored, and not very professionally done either. The gun has been heavily polished (see the faint barrel adress, the dished out holes around the heads of the frame screws and so on). The barrel has a reblue (definitely not original) and so does the frame (which should have casehardening, not solid blue). The frontsight has been replaced with a higher one of the wrong profile (resembling that of a Colt SAA). Well, that´s just a few things off the top of my head.

All this said, the gun is not worthless in any sense, especcially if all numbers match, but it is probably worth something in the high three figure span rather than in the low to mid 4 figure span which would have been the case if it had been left alone. I would however say that in this restored condition, inspector markings ads no value, most collectors would not want the gun anyway.

It is a reasonably pretty gun though, although serious collectors would cringe if they saw it (serious collectors are the guys who pay serious money for seriously original untouched guns, myself I´m a not so serious but longtime collector and shooter of original percussion revolvers).

Anders Olsson

March 3, 2011, 07:13 PM
I would suggest going to an "antique gun dealer" and say this gun is not for sale but I'll pay you for an appraisal. Actually what you are saying is that he has no $interest in buying or brokering it but giving you a value based on expertise and receiving a fee for that and research. But any antique that has been restored etc can sometimes be the kiss of death. But, the value would be based on what similar restored guns are worth by comparable sales, supply and demand and condition