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I picked this up from a local pawn shop. At first glance I thought it was a Colt Trooper but it has no markings other than COLT 357, that confused me a bit at first. The bluing is around 80-85% and the cylinder has very little play. The only obvious issue is the bottom front corner of the grip is carved or possibly chipped .

I have found very little information about this revolver since I started looking yesterday but I think I found the serial numbers online and it looks like it was made in 1956.

From what I have read the grips for these are quite expensive and hard to find. Due to the chipped/carved grip corner it is developing a minor crack as can be seen in the second pic. Would it be a good idea to repair this area with wood glue and a fitted piece of hardwood, wood filler or should I just leave it as is. Any suggestions or information would be greatly appreciated.




 

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For the grips you perhaps need to seek professional advice. The 357 model was made from about 1953 till 1961. Your serial number for 1956 should fall in the 8851 to 9701. The Python eclipsed this revolver in 1955. The Python lockwork first appeared in the Colt 357 model. Only about 15000 were made, so its fairly scarce. I can only see the second picture so not sure what has happened to the first.
Replacement grips are probably available though not original from any one of a number of US grip makers/suppliers.
 

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Take the stocks/grips off and take detailed pictures of the chip/cracked area then post them. Some folks do their own repair work but anything involving work on expensive or hard to find stocks/grips should be repaired professionally. Forum member Swamprat is THE GUY for this work and a PM to him with your situation will get an opinion and cost to bring them back to perfect condition.
 

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The Colt 357 was their premium revolver when introduced and you were correct thinking it looks a great deal like the Trooper because the Trooper became/replaced the 357 with somewhat less polish and fitting. The guns are great shooters and stocks will run about $200 so looking to get them repaired may be less expensive. Any stocks fitting the Python will fit the 357 and any E/I frame stocks will also fit as they share the frame size. Oh yeah, welcome to the Colt Forum.
 

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To be pedantic, the Trooper and the Three-Fifty Seven were actually introduced at essentially the same time (1953). The Trooper was an E frame offered in 38 Special and 22LR and the (aka) Model 357 was an I frame (the first) offered in 357 Magnum. What "replaced" the Model 357 circa 1961 was the Trooper 357, essentially the Model 357 morphed into the Trooper line supposedly with the slightly less attention to fit and finish of the Trooper although the difference is moot IMO. :cool:
 

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A1A, that information is not pedantic, it is just accurate. The subtleties of the Trooper/"357" relationship are important to understand when collecting those models. To add an important bit to the subtleties, the I-frame has a frame-mounted firing pin, while the E-frame has a hammer-mounted firing pin, essentially the only significant difference between the two frames.
 

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I just aquired my first 3 5 7. It was born in 1957. It is a very fine revolver indeed. The stocks on yours look to me to have been carved not chipped. Not that it matters I guess, wood is missing. I have seen some amazing repairs done to damaged stocks by folks here on the forum. Get them repaired and if you don't like it you can always look for replacements.

Thanks A1A and Judge for your knowledge. Not only did I learn something about the "E" and "I" frames, but now I have added a new word to my vocabulary! :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Take the stocks/grips off and take detailed pictures of the chip/cracked area then post them. Some folks do their own repair work but anything involving work on expensive or hard to find stocks/grips should be repaired professionally. Forum member Swamprat is THE GUY for this work and a PM to him with your situation will get an opinion and cost to bring them back to perfect condition.
Ok thanks, I will give him a PM. Here are the pics.

008.jpg 009.jpg 010.jpg 011.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #9
For the grips you perhaps need to seek professional advice. The 357 model was made from about 1953 till 1961. Your serial number for 1956 should fall in the 8851 to 9701. The Python eclipsed this revolver in 1955. The Python lockwork first appeared in the Colt 357 model. Only about 15000 were made, so its fairly scarce. I can only see the second picture so not sure what has happened to the first.
Replacement grips are probably available though not original from any one of a number of US grip makers/suppliers.
The serial number is 93XX so that sounds about right. Considering the condition of the grips does this have any value beyond being a shooter? I think I got a pretty good deal on it.
 

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I think you have more than an awesome shooter, it also is quite collectable.

Unfortunately those stocks are expensive to replace and may not be fixable.

Do like I do and take your time in searching out replacement stocks. The journey will educate you and lead to more cool guns.
 

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It appears the damage to the grips was deliberate, but I can't think of a good reason. I expect they are fixable. I just sent a pair of 357 half-moons to Swamprat this week. If he can fix the damage on those (or at least one of them), he can fix yours.
 

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The Colt 357 was their premium revolver when introduced and you were correct thinking it looks a great deal like the Trooper because the Trooper became/replaced the 357 with somewhat less polish and fitting. The guns are great shooters and stocks will run about $200 so looking to get them repaired may be less expensive. Any stocks fitting the Python will fit the 357 and any E/I frame stocks will also fit as they share the frame size. Oh yeah, welcome to the Colt Forum.
Thank-you for the information, I want to collect a nice one of these.:cool:
 

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A1A, that information is not pedantic, it is just accurate. The subtleties of the Trooper/"357" relationship are important to understand when collecting those models. To add an important bit to the subtleties, the I-frame has a frame-mounted firing pin, while the E-frame has a hammer-mounted firing pin, essentially the only significant difference between the two frames.

Thank-you for the information, I want to collect a nice one of these.:cool:
 

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To be pedantic, the Trooper and the Three-Fifty Seven were actually introduced at essentially the same time (1953). The Trooper was an E frame offered in 38 Special and 22LR and the (aka) Model 357 was an I frame (the first) offered in 357 Magnum. What "replaced" the Model 357 circa 1961 was the Trooper 357, essentially the Model 357 morphed into the Trooper line supposedly with the slightly less attention to fit and finish of the Trooper although the difference is moot IMO. :cool:

Thank-you for the information, I want to collect a nice one of these. And I learned a new word!:cool:
 

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i have a colt 357 also made in 1956.i lettered the gun.it is perhaps my favorite double action revolver.i have the original service full checkered grips but right now she wears ivories from nutmeg.
 
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