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Old March 14, 2021, 06:38 PM   #1
Schlitz 45
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1949 Colt Woodsman

Went out yesterday morning before the snow storm hit & came home with a sweet 1949 vintage Colt Woodsman. Got her field stripped (a bit tricky) & cleaned up while we're snowbound today. It's been well taken care of & wasn't very dirty at all & a nice bright bore. One more John Browning design to the collection, I'm working on getting the whole set

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Old March 14, 2021, 06:51 PM   #2
Jim Watson
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Postwar fixed sight Woodsman is an uncommon find.
Most such are simplified (No slide stop.) models Challenger and Huntsman.
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Old March 14, 2021, 07:29 PM   #3
Schlitz 45
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From my research only the 2nd generation Woodsman Sport model had fixed rear sights from mid 1949 to mid 1950 before they switched back to adjustable rear sights. It’s amazing all the different variations there are of these, if you ever started trying to collect them there would be no end to it. All I want to do is shoot & treasure it.
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Old March 15, 2021, 01:52 PM   #4
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Lay in a stock of "standard velocity" ammo. Also today called "target ammo". The usual high speed /high velocity ammo today is not what the gun was built for.

Not saying it will damage your Colt, but it might, and even if it doesn't, its not good for it. It would be a shame to damage/batter that fine piece shooting the wrong ammo in it.

Why risk it?
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Old March 15, 2021, 08:15 PM   #5
Schlitz 45
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Appreciate the cautionary warning.
Here’s what I’ve learned about shooting target/high velocity 22’s in the old Woodsman models:
All Woodsman pistols made after 1933 will handle high velocity 22’s with their stronger recoil spring & case hardened mainspring housing that takes the brunt of the recoil.
All post war Colt’s are OK to shoot high velocity 22’s & some of the pre war ones could too if there are horizontal lines on the mainspring housing rather than checkering.
https://www.colt22.com/faq.html
I’m not planning on shooting tons of Stingers or Mini-mags & have a lot of suitable ammo that I’ll have to see which shoots best.

Last edited by Schlitz 45; March 15, 2021 at 08:20 PM.
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Old March 16, 2021, 12:27 AM   #6
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That one was built for high velocity ammo. MY Dad's gun, built in 1953, differs only in grips and having an adjustable rear sight. It's more reliable with MiniMags than with standard velocity ammo. I believe most of the pre-war models were made for standard velocity. The finish is good on that one...
Look for vintage Super-X ammo to go with it; may as well shoot the best.
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Old March 16, 2021, 12:30 AM   #7
Pathfinder45
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P.S. Do you have the original box with the manual and the factory-shot-and-signed target?
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Old March 21, 2021, 04:54 PM   #8
Schlitz 45
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No box, but I did acquire an original grip adapter for $8. They shipped with two of these, one small & one larger. I believe this is the larger one, it really feels good & anchors the pistol in your hand-just have to get out out & shoot her.
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Old March 21, 2021, 05:15 PM   #9
dogtown tom
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Quote:
44 AMP .... The usual high speed /high velocity ammo today is not what the gun was built for.
It sure as heck IS made for high speed ammunition.
Only the First Series Woodsman require a bit of caution

https://colt22.com/
Quote:
Can I shoot modern ammo in it?
Short answer: Yes. BUT: Woodsmans made prior to 1933 were designed for standard velocity .22 LR. Those made after 1933 were all designed for high velocity .22 LR, with a stronger recoil spring and a case hardened mainspring housing, which is the part that takes the brunt of the recoil. The transition took place in the early part of 1933. They all will handle standard velocity ammo, which is what all target .22 LR is to this day. I do not recommend firing high velocity ammo in one of the early guns (before 1933). Just buy target ammo and use that. It is more accurate, and less noisy besides.


If your Woodsman is pre-WWII it will have a pattern on the mainspring housing, where the web between the thumb and forefinger touches when holding the pistol in firing position. If that pattern is checkered (left), it was made for standard velocity ammo. If the pattern is horizontal parallel lines (right), it was designed for high velocity ammo. If it is a post WWII gun it will have no such pattern, because all were designed for high velocity ammo.
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Old March 22, 2021, 07:40 PM   #10
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Nice gun. I've got a pre Woodsman and it definitely was not built for high velocity ammo. Yours, as mentioned above should be just fine.

Thats a great catch for you and deserves to be taken out and shot now and again.
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