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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I saw a Colt Cobra 2nd issue .38 Spl with the shrouded ejector, like new (no turn line on the cylinder) with the blue plastic Colt box and outer cardboard sleeve for sale today. It had a 3 inch barrel. I don't recall seeing any of these in the 3" configuration before. I've seen more Detective Special's with a 3" bbl. The grips were black micarta type with silver Rampant Colt medallions if I recall correctly. The serial number was an AC prefix. Probably made in 1980-81 is my best guess.

Store wanted $690 - priced high I think?

Is the 3 inch barrel rare in the 2nd series?

The grips are probably not original, but what was? Rubber?

Estimated date of manufacture?

I passed on it for a few reasons, but as usual, sometimes I let my curiosity get the better of me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yep, basically the same gun with the 3" bbl. Early 90's makes sense given the blue plastic box. I knew something was off!
 

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3 inch cobras are a more difficult find than the 2 inch. I certainly am happy with mine. The price seems a bit high but as collects says, in the future that could look like a bargain
 

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I would jump on that fast, they are very hard to find in the 3 inch shrouded. I sent you a PM.
 

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You have to decide which type of person you are.From my experience there are a few different types of buyers on here.There are guys on this board that would not pay a dirty peanut shell more than 450.There are others that would walk into that shop asking price in hand and leave just as soon as they finish the paperwork.I do ok for myself but with a 2 year old money vanishes quickly. If 700 was free and clear in my hush fund andbi saw that gun, it would be in my safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The consignor went down on price to $550. Came with the cardboard sleeved blue plastic box, manual (dated 1991), warranty, Colt letter, even the plastic and hangtag. Here are some pics:



 
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Am I the only one not being able to see the pics? It acts like its going to load them then nodda.....
 

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I finally got one pic to come up. Congrats I think you stole it, lol. I am jealous, of course you already know how I feel about the gun. I wouldn't be so excited if it was the 2 inch, but the 3 inch shrouded, WOW! With the outer sleeve!!!, I know that has to be an extremely hard one to find! I hope you are proud of it, I think the more research you do, the more you will be, Congratulations!
 

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There is that dastardly "issue" term again. Therefore, time for another rant on the "issue" issue. AVOID IT! It is misleading at best, and wrong at worst.

The Cobra has a much shorter history than the Detective Special because it did not exist until Post-War. The Cobra was introduced in 1950 as an alloy-frame version of the Post-War Detective Special, already in its Third Generation by that time. Early Cobras have the “Dual Tone” finish and plastic stocks. I would call these guns "First Generation." The plastic stocks were changed to wood in the mid-1950s, and the “Dual Tone” finish was dropped. I do not consider the stock material or finish change as another generation, but some might. In 1966, the butt frame was shortened, which is Second Generation. In 1973, a year after the Detective Special got the shrouded ejector rod, the shrouded barrel was introduced on the Cobra, which I count as Third Generation. The Cobra last appeared in a Colt catalog in 1978, and was absent from the 1979 catalog. (As noted above, some were made later as an apparent parts cleanup.)

Of all of the Third Generation Cobras, I think the 3-inch is by far the rarest, and should be a good collectors item. In my opinion, any such gun should be retired as a collectors piece and not carried, but to each his own. I THINK (but am not sure without checking my catalogs) that the stocks are original.

Relevant to nothing, I think the 3-inch guns are the best looking of the shrouded ejector rod D-Frame guns because the extra length helps balance the "heavy" look better.
 

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Judge, I know what you mean, but I think you should contact Blue Book Publications and bring them up to speed...this is where all these terms come from which I'm sure you already know. I do it myself sometimes because all the dealers and traders always use these terms from the Blue Book-its their Bible. I try anymore to use terms like shrouded and unshrouded but that is probably not too much better in your eyes. I agree the 3 inch guns are BY FAR the best looking of the shrouded and in my opinion, the best looking of all D frames.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes, I ended up buying it. I won't be carrying it and though it's been fired by the previous owner, I don't intend on shooting it. I have plenty of revolvers for that!The stocks' medallions are marked 150 yrs or something to that effect. I'll try and take close ups of those soon.
 
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