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Mr. Kopec's evaluation of my 1885 US Cavalry Colt (the second one pictured below) was discussed in an earlier thread. He made these observations, which I believe are incorrect...and significantly reduce the value of my gun. Here are some of his observations, with photos comparing my revolver with another US Cavalry Colt made the same year (1885).

Mr. Kopec observed:

- The cylinder flutes (on the second revolver) are too pointed to have been a period cylinder.

- The grips fitted to this revolver (the second one) have been slightly re-contoured at the butt-strap. This is definitely not factory work. Colt would never have approved this type of modification.

- The bolt-stops and guides (on the second revolver) are not correct when compared with an original Colt cylinder.

Well, here is a photo comparison with another Cavalry Colt made the same year (1885). My gun is the one that shows less wear.

Photograph Light Air gun Trigger Line

Kopec said the grips at the butt-strap had been "re-contoured." He added: "This is definitely not factory work. Colt would never have approved this type of modification." The only apparent difference is that the grips on the left show wear along the lower edge.

Brown Rectangle Wood Floor Wood stain


The shape of the cylinder flutes appear identical to me.

Automotive tire Rectangle Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior


The bolt stops and guides also look very similar. The one on the left does exhibit more wear from extensive usage.

Liquid Fluid Font Gas Water


I think that Mr. Kopec's evaluation has some factual errors that will be very difficult, if not impossible to overcome because of his reputation as the foremost Colt expert.
 

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Mr. Kopec's evaluation of my 1885 US Cavalry Colt (the second one pictured below) was discussed in an earlier thread. He made these observations, which I believe are incorrect...and significantly reduce the value of my gun. Here are some of his observations, with photos comparing my revolver with another US Cavalry Colt made the same year (1885).

Mr. Kopec observed:

- The cylinder flutes (on the second revolver) are too pointed to have been a period cylinder.

- The grips fitted to this revolver (the second one) have been slightly re-contoured at the butt-strap. This is definitely not factory work. Colt would never have approved this type of modification.

- The bolt-stops and guides (on the second revolver) are not correct when compared with an original Colt cylinder.

Well, here is a photo comparison with another Cavalry Colt made the same year (1885). The cylinder flutes on both guns appear identical to me. The profile of the grips also look the same to me.

View attachment 800783
View attachment 800786


The bolt stops and guides also look very similar. The one on the left does exhibit more wear and tear.

View attachment 800785

The bottomline is that I think that Mr. Kopec's evaluation has some factual errors that will be very difficult, if not impossible to overcome because of his reputation as the foremost Colt expert.
can you post the entire letter, please?
 

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I used to work in a manufacturing plant. We produced millions of parts per day. Between variances in the stock material, differences in how a machine was set up, and wear of the tooling, batches of parts would have slightly different dimensions. The specs on the parts would allow a range of dimensions, so while they were rarely identical, they were still acceptable to use. Does anyone remember cars from the 60s and 70s? While car body panels came off the same stamping press, they still used shims when mounting them to the car to assure that the panels lined up properly. In theory, if they were truly identical, no shim should be required. No manufacturing process is 100% perfect. I can't imagine that in 1885 in a dimly lit plant tolerances were maintained better than today's CNC, optical recognition, and laser-guided machines.
 

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As a casual observer, I continually scratch my head in the inconsistency of Mr. Kopec’s comments and ratings. And as the OP states, unfortunately he is judge and jury so many, many $$$$ are at play with his “opinion”. God Bless Mr. Kopec, but there really needs to be a second or third arbtrar of these guns.
 

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I would say if you sell the gun and hold back the letter, that can be construed as deceptive. Don’t ask if you may not like the answer. This whole thing seems to stem from the baseball card rating racket. I think Kopec’s opinion is good to know, but I wouldn’t bet the farm on it.
 

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how so? What steps would the buyer take? Has the serial number been identified ?
He could contact Kopec to see if the Colt has been evaluated. He can search the serial number. I would think the buyer would be a collector and would know what he is looking at. In other words, the buyer needs to do his OWN homework.
 

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If the weapon is sold 10 years from now, the buyer will likely not receive a reply from Mr Kopec. An inquiry on the serial number to Colt? That would show what pertinent info.
À new collector should have material information deliberately withheld?
 

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No. I believe Kopec's letter contains factual errors that lower the value of my gun. Someday I'll want to sell this gun. Putting the letter on the internet would be a mistake.
A couple of observations…

1. You have already put this information on the internet via this post. If you didn’t agree with the assessment, you could / should have just chalked it up as a couple hundred dollar waste of money.

2. If I personally owned a firearm (or anything else for that matter) and was attempting to sell it, I would disclose any adverse conditions prior to a sale. I’m not saying you shouldn’t sell it for the price you deem correct, but to do so and not inform the buyer of “issues” such as an authentication letter that would adversely effect pricing is shady at best (even if you don’t agree with the findings).

Based on your post above about possibly selling the gun later and not wanting to disclose the letter that you know exists would certainly make me and / or other buyers think twice about purchasing anything from you.
 

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I am a little confused by this debate because I have a Colt Artillery model with mixed inspected parts dating from 1873 to 1877. I also happen to have 2 period correct cylinders for the gun and each cylinder has a serial number and corresponding ordinance inspector initials stamp. This information should trump any cosmetic differences due to manufacturing process variation or wear issues.
 

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To me eyes only , I tell ya ( :)). Could be lighting , angle or ? To me again , the ops grips are fair on the butt ,but the upper at the top of grip frame has been recurved to a lesser angle . Factory ? Just not the same . You can post 2 different pistols made the same day but 2 different workers built them , of course there will be discrepancy .
 
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