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Thread: Colt DA 38

  1. #1
    Junior Member jayd is on a distinguished road

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    Colt DA 38

    I'm trying to get an approximate value on a Colt DA 38. The serial number is 171xxx and from I can find it's dated 1901, is that correct? It's in good condition with about 95% of the original finish and the action is good also. The ejector rod is bent slightly and I have not attempted to straighten it. I've seen auctions with prices from 200.00-1200.00, but none had any bids, any help would be appreciated.





  2. #2
    Senior Member bmcgilvray is on a distinguished road

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    My Wilson: "Colt, An American Legend" also says 1901 is the year your revolver is produced.

    Your revolver is a good looking one and a reasonable example for either a Colt collector or a U. S. military collector. I would think that $500 would be a fair price for all concerned should the revolver be sold.

    You did well by not attempting to straighten the ejector rod. I don't know how to advise you to correct that small problem but a gunsmith could correct it easily.

    Those old revolvers or fun to shoot on a pleasant afternoon. Be certain and use .38 Long Colt ammunition or at least specially prepared handloads using mild powder charges and hollow base bullets. .38 Special ammunition will fit and might even work. It also might damage the revolver and that would be a shame.

    A knowledgeable handloader can produce safe and effective .38 Long Colt performance in .38 Special cases. One would not want to confuse standard .38 Special ammunition with the special loads if he chose to go this route to prepare some shooting ammunition for the old revolver.

  3. #3
    Junior Member jayd is on a distinguished road

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    I just finished a good cleaning, it's been 20-30 years since anyone attempted to clean or lube it. The bore looks ok, the finish has minor surface rust, it's amazing how good a shape it's in. The cylinder’s tight when the hammer is down, however there is excessive play when the hammer is cocked. The crane locks correctly, the latch sticks a little and does not engage completely allowing the cylinder rotate slightly when cocked. I'll be taking it to a gunsmith to see what can be done. I have not purchased it yet, guess I'll wait and see what the gunsmith says.

    Thanks for the help.

  4. #4
    Senior Member gkitch is on a distinguished road

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    IS it US ARMY marked on the butt? Do you think the finish is original to the gun?

  5. #5
    Senior Member mike hudson is on a distinguished road

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    the finish looks original to me, though pictures of the markings would be a help. in that kind of shape, and if everything's kosher, $750 might be a reasonable price. the bent ejector rods are a common problem on these, and if you're going to shoot it, that needs to be taken care of.

  6. #6
    Junior Member jayd is on a distinguished road

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    Just got back from the gunsmith and he said its probably just needs to be completely disassembled and cleaned, maybe some polishing will correct the latch problem. It is marked US Army and I think the finish is original.

  7. #7
    Senior Member cubrock is on a distinguished road

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    That is a fairly nice one. Most of these I see are pretty doggy.

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

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    Seems like I've read on the Forum that some of the old .38 Colts could be found in shipboard armories of U.S. Navy ships as late as the eve of World War II.

  9. #9
    Senior Member mike hudson is on a distinguished road

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    it was actually the coast guard that used these into ww2, bryan. and numbers were sent to the u.k. under lend-lease for use by the brits following dunkirk. i always like to note that they were used with smokeless ammunition pretty much after the turn of the century despite the absence of the vp proofmark people get so worked up over.

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

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    You know the Brits proofed every gun sent them in Lend Lease.
    Sincerely,


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