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For those who don't know. Transitionals are guns that transition from one model to the next and in most cases have likeness of both models.

I'm beginning to get into these but I understand that I need to proceed with caution. Buyer don't want to get burned.
 

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Hi Addicted,

I'm interested in different transitional models on various Colt models...One thing I've found about Colt products is that every model I'm familiar with has many different transition points. I'm particularly interested in the early Colt double action revolvers... In the period between 1889 and 1908 in the New Army and Navy Model series there are probably a dozen different major transition points... I found that there were enought different marking and machining changes made by Colt in these models to fill 287 pages in a book.

In the Model 1889 New Navy revolvers there are Four different major frame changes between 1889 and 1895 when the Model 1889 went out of production... (There were only 34,000 of them produced in total)... I'm not as familiar with the newer production stuff (post 1950s), but from what I have seen these models are just one big series of changes also...

What specifically where you interested in finding out about transition models?
Bob Best
 

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Hi ButchG17,

That's very nice and an interesting varitaion you have there...

Digging further into the collecting of "Transitions", collectors should keep in mind that Colt, like all companies was only interested in the bottom line. Nothing was ever wasted. There are many examples of Colt using up old parts on later production guns.

A Classic example that is well known is their use of the long fluted Model 1878 double action revolver cylinders on the Model 1873 single actions. When the Model 1878 DA went out of production, Colt remachined the ratchet area of the cylinder and used them in the SAA model rather than discard them. This became a coverted and very expensive collector's gun.

What you have to be careful of today is having the "cottage industry" make up some "Rare Unknown Variation" and selling it to the unwary collector. The only way I have found to protect yourself from this is KNOWLEDGE!

If you are going to collect these "rare and expensive" variations, you better have an EXTENSIVE knowledge of just exactly what Colt was doing in their manufacturing processes at any specific time... That requires considerable study of multiple revolver lines being produced by Colt and a study of the machining and finishing processes Colt was using. It also requires a knowledge of what kinds of machining processes we used then vs.now as machining/finishing today leaves a different "signature" than in days of old. (Example: Finding electric engraving cutter tool marks in the bottoms of factory applied ROLL MARKINGS on guns that were made before engravers were in use)... If you don't have this base of knowledge it can be a very expensive lesson for you to learn as you are an easy mark... That is how "cottage industry" Fakers make their money!!!

I enjoyed looking at you .32-20! Bob Best
 
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