Good Morning All,
I received my “new” shootin iron yesterday, a .38-40 made in 1907, according to the serial number. When I removed the base pin I noticed a small marking “41” stamped under the barrel close to the frame and was wondering what you think its for. Thanks for any input!
Would probably be worth the $100 for the letter to see what it came from Colt originally as. Maybe someone changed the cylinder at some time to 41 LC and stamped the barrel to note the change, although the 38-40 is definitely the more common caliber and I don't know why someone would do that unless they just had a caliber preference.
I am looking on my 1900, and I can see the "1" ! Lots of crud right there. Never new that was there on those, have something new to look for. Wonder if that was a "master marking", and barrels were marked with actual round to be used once built?
As far as I remember all 38-40's and 41's have the 41 on the bottom of the barrel. Both calibers have the same bore diameter and the only difference is the cylinder configuration. I've never seen 38 on the bottom of a 38-40 single action....always a 41.
I had a big laugh a few years ago when a large auction house advertised a historical single action had been converted from 38-40 to 41 ......I asked them how they knew it was converted and they said the trigger bow said 38 cal (it was a 1888 production) but the barrel had a tiny 41 under the cylinder pin. The saa had a 38-40 cylinder in it. I explained to them that 38-40 barrels had a tiny 41 on them and they went and edited their auction details. I'm amazed at the "experts" who do the catalogs in these auction houses. Their ignorance either costs the buyers or the consignors a lot of money.