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Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

New to this forum and relatively new to firearms for that matter. I am looking for some investment guns and one in particular that I am researching is a Colt .357 "Pre" Python. It's blued w/after market shooting grips. I would say this gun is approx. 80%. It's blueing is wore off at the thumb area on the left side from shooting and a little around the tip of the barrell rim. Other then that the gun is in perfect order. I have a blue book and it shows this gun at $275 @ 80% (I'm really guestimating the percentage, it could be better but I'm factoring in the aftermarket shooting grips). But this book is a couple of years old. I have been doing a lot of research about this firearm and it's era. The owner will let me have it for $390 (plus tax). Can anyone school me if this seems way high, or does this seem like a fair price for this gun? Any input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

As is always the case with guns, it's condition, condition, condition.

Your 80% might be my 70% or my 90%.

Factors that affect price in your case are:
The gun doesn't have the original grips. Value drops.
What type of hammer does it have? The target hammer, or the narrow, grooved service hammer?
Target hammer, value goes up, service hammer value down.

What's the condition of the gun mechanically? Is it in time? Have any end shake?

These days just about any discontinued Colt is bringing premium prices, so if you overspend on it, you'll recover it in a few years time.

My suggestion is, carefully check the mechanical condition, and dry to deal the price down.

Here's a link to how to check the timing of a Colt DA revolver.
http://www.coltforum.com/forums/showflat...h=true#Post6053

To check for cylinder end shake, with the cylinder closed, attempt to move the cylinder back and forth in the frame.
There should be virtually NO detectable movement.

Whether the gun is a good price depends on condition and how bad you want it.
Frankly, a well used 357 with aftermarket grips, is NOT something I'd clasify as an "Investment gun".

I'd rate that one as a shooter grade.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

In my area an 80% M357 without original grips is a $250 gun . It's your call , but I think I'd wait for the next one .
As dfw mentioned , it's a shooter , not investment . They are excellent shooters though . My 6" is one of my favorite range guns .
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

I'd pass on this gun but I am fond of the M357. I have one in nickel and I'd buy another nickel 357 anyday. Be patient and a gun will fall in your lap. What's your spending limit? Anything specific....caliber, barrel length, era, are you wanting to shoot this gun? What model appeals to you? The 1st investment gun is a big leap. By no means get in a hurry to buy. I've got a good pick if you can spare $550. It's over 60 years old and NIB and $550 is a steal.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

Addicted,

I have a real nice 6 inch blue Colt .357 from 1957, easy 99% with just a little bit of what appears to be browning on the front sight. Hardly noticeable.

I have never seen one of these in nickel and would really like to see a pic of yours if possible. They must be pretty rare. Any idea how many were manufactured in nickel?
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

manderson, send me your e-mail address and I will send you a pic of a Nickel 357 if he doesn't.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

First welcome to the forum. Now that the formalities are out of the way, like what the others have said you are looking at a shooter not an investment gun. Guns to invest in must be all original to get full value. Next it should be 95% or better if it's a common production modern gun (50 years is not that old for a firearm).
I would point out the wear and non-original stocks to haggle the price down some, but don't be surprised if the dealer stands firm.
We have discussed the 357 several times in the past. Do a search here as quite a bit of info was posted.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

[ QUOTE ]
I'd pass on this gun but I am fond of the M357. I have one in nickel and I'd buy another nickel 357 anyday. Be patient and a gun will fall in your lap. What's your spending limit? Anything specific....caliber, barrel length, era, are you wanting to shoot this gun? What model appeals to you? The 1st investment gun is a big leap. By no means get in a hurry to buy. I've got a good pick if you can spare $550. It's over 60 years old and NIB and $550 is a steal.

[/ QUOTE ]

Yes, this is my first investment gun. I think for a first one I would like to stay 500 or below. Hard to justify anything higher to the wife. Calilber, barrell lenghth, & era don't really matter at this point. I am looking for a safe queen that will start me on the way to proper collecting (so to speak). No, this wouldn't be a shooter. Maybe once or twice a year if that. I am completely in the blind as to where to start. Only knowing that I need to start somewhere.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

If you are going to shoot the gun AT ALL buy a gun that has already been shot. Why spend the extra money on one that is NIB if you are going to shoot it. For investmant purposes a NIB gun is usually the way to go. In most cases you will have to pay significantly more for a NIB investmant grade gun.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

[ QUOTE ]
Addicted, I have never seen one of these in nickel and would really like to see a pic of yours if possible. They must be pretty rare. Any idea how many were manufactured in nickel?

[/ QUOTE ]

Mine is at the gun show. Not for sale but just for 'show'. It's the only one I've seen but I do believe that JC also has one. I see that no another has appeared. They are uncommon in nickel. I'll post photo's Sunday evening of mine.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

Purchasing a unfired revolver is the way to go but to do it for under $500 will be difficult. Once you buy your first minty you'll be hooked for life.

There is a .22LR Cobra back on auction and opening bid is $649. This gun very much has my interest and I do not think it will sell for $649. I'm going to pass on the gun due to 3 purchases in the last 3 weeks leaving me currently gun poor. Maybe a deal could be made on this gun after the auction.

I'd purchase a 50 year old gun (+/- 10 years) because that's where the hidden value is today for greatest future return. A 2" barreled Marshal would be a good choice but that will run you about $800. If you wait long enough a square butt Detective Special will fall in your lap. One year ago I purchased my 1932 Nickel DS for $320. The nickel is only 80% but well worth the $320. Keep your eye on those .22LR revolvers such as a VERY early Troopers right after the M357 discontinued.

Have your money ready to move fast. One of us will get you fixed up. BTW: the fun is in the hunt.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

MericR,

I agree with Addicted that the best potential for value increases is with some of the older guns. That said, I think that you are on the right track with the Colt 357, although I wouldn't buy one in that condition. I think (just my opinion) that the 357 is undervalued compared to a lot of the Colts and is a sleeper that may really be discovered and appreciated by the collectors at some point. I have seen a couple of them with correct boxes and paperwork in 95%+ condition sell in the $400 to $450 range which I don't think would be a bad buy at all. The only advice I have is to take your time and learn as much as you can then once you have decided what you want start hunting for it. Definitely study up on what to look for in a used revolver. There are a lot of good posts on here detailing how to check timing, endshake, etc. There are a lot of good deals out there if you're patient and you have the money when the opportunity presents itself. Good luck, you'll be successful and find something you're pleased with.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

Just a rainy day here, so I thought I'd play with the camera and post a couple pic's of my Colt 357, s/n 113xx from 1957. It does have some very slight muzzle wear, no box or papers, so I'd give it a 98%. When I get better with this camera, I'll learn how to get those close details.


 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

Very nice revolver and nice pictures too!

MericR: I wanted to add a couple comments about your newly found interest in collecting Colt handguns. If you are truly just buying for investment purposes, buy only 95% or better guns.... the closer you can get to NIB, the better. You will make mistakes, paying too much, not recognizing a real unusual speciman, or extreme bargain. We all do and did. Get the original box numbered to the gun, if possible.

I echo Addicted comments on undervalued Colt handguns relative to what we are seeing in the marketplace as I have said essentially the same things in the past. The auction sites may be the best national reference on value, although I sense that many nice guns are purchased above the current market with the thought that "They will continue to go up in value and the value will catch up with the price."

I tend to specialize in 22's now. I certainly don't have the financial ability to look at everything. I always felt they reflected a good niche in the market and recent auction prices on Diamondbacks certainly have demonstrated that many collectors are paying premium prices for them. Look for the 38spl models of Diamondback to follow behind the 22's in value and interest; they will be increasing in price as interest in DBs continue. You will notice that only the really nice specimans bring the big bucks! Hence, from an investment perspective, you are better off looking at quality over quantity.

If you have not picked up some of the standard reference books, I strongly recommend that you look at getting some-starting with "Colt An American Legend" (RL Wilson) which is under $30 normally for new copies. Buy an gun, and buy a book. Some of the books aren't necessarily bad investments either, not that the Wilson book above will ever likely be "valuable" in the short term future.

The 357 model you were looking at is priced a bit high for the condition.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

Above gun for sale for $520.00 shipped if anyone is looking. Thanks, BBBS
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

[ QUOTE ]
Addicted, I have never seen one of these in nickel and would really like to see a pic of yours if possible. They must be pretty rare. Any idea how many were manufactured in nickel?

[/ QUOTE ]

Here you go. Nickel is difficult to photograph.


 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

[ QUOTE ]
Above gun for sale for $520.00 shipped if anyone is looking. Thanks, BBBS

[/ QUOTE ]

What above gun? Photos?
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

BBBS sent me photos and I posted them for viewing. I deleted the post when he mentioned the sale. If you want to sell something, the "Classifieds" forum is the place to do it and I am not an advertising agency.

Addicted - Beautiful pistol!

I will be watching and waiting for one of these.
 

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Re: Colt .357 \"pre\" Python query

[ QUOTE ]
Addicted - Beautiful pistol!

I will be watching and waiting for one of these.

[/ QUOTE ]

I purchased this gun 3 years ago and haven't seen one since. I do believe JudgeColt has one but then he has one of everything. /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 
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