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Thread: Who makes the best reproduction Colt?

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    Junior Member Conrad67 is on a distinguished road

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    Who makes the best reproduction Colt?

    I have found that there are a lot of companies over the years that have made a reproduction percussion Colt revolver.

    Is one manufacturer considered higher quality than the others: Uberti, New Traditions, Rigarmi, Navy Arms, Pietta, etc?

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    Senior Member .455Eley is on a distinguished road

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    I bought a Uberti 1851 and a 1861 at DGW this year and they are extremely accurate and the actions are so smooth they makes my early 80's Colt SAA feel like it has car springs in it. My .02.
    Last edited by .455Eley; 06-09-2013 at 07:50 PM.
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    Supporting Member Oyeboten is on a distinguished road
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    I think it has varied at different times, and, with different Models.


    So, one kind of has to go on a case by case basis, for any particular example at hand.

    Certainly Colt, in their continued production, made some very good ones also!

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    Senior Member steg is on a distinguished road

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    In my opinion, the 2nd generation F Series Colt percussion guns are superior in finish and fit to everyone of the Italian and Belgian repros. The 2nd generation F Series were made from Uberti parts castings that were imported in the rough and were finished and assembled under contract by Lou Imperato in his New Jersey factory. under the supervision of a Colt Factory Quality Control team. The finish on these guns was done with the original Colt processes.
    The second best were the 3rd generation "Signature Series" which were made under license by Lou Imperato, using many of the former employees that made the 2nd gen. Colts in New Jersey. Yes, the 3rd gen. plant in Brooklyn did turn out some duds, but by and large, their efforts were much better than 99% of the Italian productions.
    It is my understanding from knowledgable shooters, that both 2nd and 3rd gen Colt percussion pistols are just as accurate as the originals. This is not so for most of the Italian repros.

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    Supporting Member rhmc24 is on a distinguished road
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    A .36 cal repro (who ?) had a barrel larger O.D. than a Colt, apparently to allow use of the same barrel blank in either .36 or .44. Only noticeable when compared to a real Colt. Further check found the grip frames a misfit too.

    They all try to mimic Colt externally but it would be interesting to know which, if any, of the repros are faithful to original Colt inside. I was trying to build up a distressed Colt '61 Navy and ordered parts from both Numrich & Dixie. Not one part was even close enough to install as it came. I was able to make some of them work with a lot TLC. A set of Uberti screws did work well except the hammer screw which was of smaller diameter. A set of Colt internal parts from Numrich looked like parts that might work but I didn't open its package because it had a Remington hammer in it. I got refund but was out the shipping both ways.
    Last edited by rhmc24; 06-10-2013 at 06:00 AM.

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    Supporting Member gunner5 is on a distinguished road
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    I agree with Steg on his assessment. There is a large following of those who collect the Colt 2nd generation percussion revolvers and therefore may induce some bias. But I think if you place the Colt 2nd generation (and the Colt 3rd generation) next to an import, you'll notice, as Steg mentioned, superior fit and finish in the Colts.

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    Supporting Member BigG is on a distinguished road
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    I have a 3rd generation Colt Dragoon and also a 2nd generation both in as new condition. The 3rd is much nicer in finish. Highly polished bright blue vs std blue.

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  8. #8
    Senior Member steg is on a distinguished road

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigG View Post
    I have a 3rd generation Colt Dragoon and also a 2nd generation both in as new condition. The 3rd is much nicer in finish. Highly polished bright blue vs std blue.
    There is a reason for the difference in finish between the two guns. 2nd gen. Colts had the same finish as did the M1873 SAA's. Why this was specifieded by Colt is probably to save production costs. It costs a lot of money to shift from one process to another, and since the C series were made with the SAA finish, Colt wanted continuity in the F series guns made under sub-contract by Lou Imperato.
    The 3rd gen. Colts, Made by Colt Blackpowder in Brooklyn, under license from Colt in Hartford, used the same case hardening/bluing processes as did the original Civil War era Colts. They could do this economically because they started the old process from scratch.

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    Junior Member Conrad67 is on a distinguished road

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    Thanks for the information.

    While most 2nd and 3rd generation Colts are collectors guns and owners generally don't shoot them. Let me ask the question in a slightly different way. Which reproduction revolvers are the best shooters (ie function, durability, accuracy, etc)?
    Are there any reproduction revolvers that you would shy away from shooting?

  10. #10
    Senior Member tecolote is on a distinguished road

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    I have revolvers from both the F series 2nd Gen and the 3rd Gen, and also Ubertis from Dixie Gun Works and Cimarron. I think the 2nd Gen. 1851 Navy maybe,detail wise, the most accurate reproduction. The 3rd Gen guns are finished better,although QC was hit or miss with early ones. Of the Ubertis, in my limited experience, I believe Cimarron has the best fit and finish.
    As to shooting, it really is a crapshoot among the individual guns. My best shooter is my 2nd Gen 1861 Navy. However its mainspring broke one day. I do not shoot the above mentioned 51 Navy nearly as well as the 61, due to several possible reasons, but it will eat spent caps all day long and keep on going. The 2 Cimarron 61s rival and maybe exceed my 2nd Gen in accuracy. I bought them in 2003, so I can't comment on present day guns.

    Regards,

    Tecolote


 

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