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Thread: My Grandfather's D.A.38 Officers Model

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    Junior Member hsegura is on a distinguished road

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    My Grandfather's D.A.38 Officers Model

    Can anyone out there educate me about this gun? I have read so many conflicting opinions / expert advice that I don't know what to think. First, the serial number is 233XXX. Some say its 1908, some say 1950,,,UHG! Also, some say don't shoot 38 specials, others say no problem.
    This gun is nickel plated and is almost flawless. No corrosion, smooth clean nickel. I have had some that say the grips were only on the 1908 and maybe 1909 only. Others say different years.
    It seems this gun has few real experts. If anyone out there really is educated about this gun, I would be very appreciative of anything you can tell me about it.
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    Last edited by hsegura; 01-19-2013 at 08:16 PM.

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    Senior Member 22_Matt is on a distinguished road

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    You have a very late 1st type Officers Model. It has the late style frame that was only used from around serial number 270000 in Dec 1906 until the end of production in 1908. The gun is most likely not original due to OM's being target revolvers and not being nickel plated. The serial number might be shallow and buffed down a bit and actually be 288XXX. That would put it in 1907 which would be correct for that style frame. I have one just like it, serial 290XXX and a 2nd type OM from 1908. The gun was originaly made for 38 Long Colt. It will chamber a 38 Special, but the internals will take a beating.
    Rock likes this.
    The West wasn't won with a registered gun.

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    Senior Member Bushwhacker is on a distinguished road

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    You have an early Officers Model, 1904 vintage. The stocks (grips) look original and correct for this model. The only fly in the ointment is that this model was not produced with a nickel finish, so at some point it was refinished. It has a delicate mechanism that no one wants to work on, so I would'nt fire it at all. Hold on to it as a keepsake, find something modern to shoot.
    God created men and Colonel Colt made them equal.

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    Junior Member hsegura is on a distinguished road

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    Thanks for the information. I have several modern handguns to shoot and dont want to damage this gun. I am thinking of selling it. Any idea what the value might be?

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    Senior Member 22_Matt is on a distinguished road

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    With the refinish, probably $300-$400.
    The West wasn't won with a registered gun.

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    Junior Member hsegura is on a distinguished road

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    Hmmm,,,,can't really shoot it, not worth much money. Guess a trade is in order. Will take it to my next gun show and see what I can get on trade. It really is an attractive gun, but I prefer to feel good about shooting what I own, and I really don't feel much sentimental value in this particular family heirloom.
    Again, thanks for all the information.

  7. #7
    Senior Member kevin hines is on a distinguished road

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    If no-one ellse in the family wants it, you can also try the classifieds on this site. Sell it to someone who'll appreciate it, "warts and all".
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    Senior Member Abe Anglin is on a distinguished road

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    Quote Originally Posted by hsegura View Post
    Hmmm,,,,can't really shoot it, not worth much money. Guess a trade is in order. Will take it to my next gun show and see what I can get on trade. It really is an attractive gun, but I prefer to feel good about shooting what I own, and I really don't feel much sentimental value in this particular family heirloom.
    Again, thanks for all the information.
    If you are determined to dispose of it, take the grips off and sell them here - then find some descent looking reproduction grips for it,
    or just add some garden variety aftermarket stocks ...... ...... ... you could conceivably double your money like that.


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  9. #9
    Junior Member hsegura is on a distinguished road

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    Ok guys, I took the gun to a local gunsmith who is supposed to be a Colt expert. He says the gun is worth a lot more than the feedback I got here. I am not sure what to think now. He also said it was a 38 special, and that colt made my year model in 38 special as it did most everything after the Spanish American war. I am not sure I trust his knowledge even though he seemed to be confident in what he was saying and after all he made a significant offer. I told him I was hearing different on this forum and he said the only thing he can say is that he held the gun in his hand, and it was the best condition of any he had seen. However, he did encourage me to get the letter. In any case, I am more confused than ever, LOL.
    I may be opening Pandora's box here, but I would really like to get responses to this experience.

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

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    Bob Best wrote the book on these models, and he says the lowest serial Officers Model reported to him was 236872. If yours is indeed in the 233000 range, it may be of interest to him. He is a member of this forum. And all Officers Models were designed for .38 Special. But again, the nickel finish is a question mark.
    God created men and Colonel Colt made them equal.


 

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