Need help in identifying Colt 357 Magnum CTG
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Thread: Need help in identifying Colt 357 Magnum CTG

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    Need help in identifying Colt 357 Magnum CTG

    Can anybody give me some help in identifying a revolver? I'm going to look at the gun tomorrow but would like to have a little idea about what it is before I go. The owner said the gun was given to him so he knows nothing about it other than it's in excellent condition and is pre-Python. The only identifying marks on it are:

    Colt 357 Magnum CTG
    Colt PTFA
    Manufactured in Hartford, CT

    It does not have a model number but has a serial number, which he didn't give me. He didn't measure the barrell but says it appears to be at least 6". He estimates the gun was manufactured sometime in the 50's, but isn't sure.

    Any suggestions or help will be appreciated. Thanks!

    Doug

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    A1A
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    Welcome to the forum. It sounds like a Colt Model Three-Fifty-Seven, which is roll marked on the barrel "COLT 357". Under that is 357 Magnum Ctg. a typical Colt marking meaning 357 Magnum Cartridge which is the caliber and the fact that it a cartridge firing revolver. Colts did not have model "numbers" in those days. They were made from circa 1953 to 1961. They were available with 4 and 6" barrels. They were indeed pre-Pythons, being the first I frame revolver. The I frame characteristic is a frame mounted firing pin. It is said that approximately 15,000 were made. There are several previous threads about them on rthe forum, but the search engine does not deal with "357" as a target. Try three fifty seven. Here is one for starters: https://www.coltforum.com/forums/colt...57-magnum.html.

    And a 1954 catalog page:



    And a picture:

    Last edited by A1A; 02-13-2013 at 09:03 AM.
    Collects likes this.

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    It is most likely the Colt 3-5-7.It was the foundation for the Python.It continued to be produced for a few short years and became the Colt Trooper.I hope I have my timeline right,if not someone will correct me.D*
    Daryl
    If you keep doing what you always did you will always get what you always got

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    A1A
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    The original Trooper was a contemporary of the 357 as you can see from the catalog page. The Model 357 "became" the Trooper 357 circa 1961.

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    And I'll add that in good and complete original condition, 3-5-7s have become highly desirable due to their high quality and relative rarity. As are the earlier Troopers (but not as much so).

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    Thanks for the help, guys. I'm going to look at the revolver later this morning and will report back as to what I find.

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    Just saw the gun. It is, indeed, what you all said it is - a three fifty seven, 6" barrel. It's in excellent condition with just a little holster wear, locks up super tight, and a fantastic trigger. He wants $1,100 for it, which I think is high. And I have a couple of concerns: the cylinder seems just a bit sluggish, the stocks aren't original (although they are early Python half-moons in great shape), and it is unregistered with no paper work. Living in PA, I'm not sure of the legal ramifications. I really like the gun and would like to own it. Any advice as to what might be a fair offer or how to go about registering it? I should add that the owner is somebody I know and trust. Many thanks for your help so far. Doug

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    IMHO that price is indeed high given that the original target stocks are missing. I've seen just the stocks for sale in the $350 range. I would think that $750ish would be good value for that one. I can't help you with your legal question, but post the first few digits of the serial# if you have it so we can date it for you.

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    The serial number is 17688. I think that puts it in a manufacture date of 1959. Not sure, though.

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    A1A
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    Yes, that does indicate a manufacturing year of 1959. It is possible and happens quite often that the gun may not have been shipped until later. That can only be determined with a Colt archive letter that will tell you the actual ship date and even the actual manufacturing date if you request it. It is entirely possible IMO that the stocks are original to the gun (unless they have gold medallions which could cast a doubt, but still be of value). Read this: https://www.coltforum.com/forums/colt...ne-1961-a.html. The price does seem a little high, but then they all are these days. As they say, you might just be buying it too soon.

    The cylinder seems sluggish compared to what? Colt cylinders do not spin like S&W, but it could also just need a little flushing and lubing.
    Last edited by A1A; 02-14-2013 at 03:55 PM.


 
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