I have a 1904 Colt New Service 38 WCF in need of a good gun smith. Cylinder locking bar not locking tight and a slight bit of cylinder movement fore and aft on crane shaft. Somebody suggest the best to me.
Clearly you would have to ask Jack First and the local FFLs that question. It seems like if they wanted the gunsmith work, but didn't want to manage the paperwork, they would make an arrangement with a local FFL and tell you to send it to him. Apparently they do not. Another "loose end" from Colt. I would hope someone would tell me otherwise.
I called colt and they told me that they don't do the kind of work I need done on that old of a model. I really thought a colt was a colt and colt was there for me. Shame, shame, shame what the world has come to.
Timing issues are most likely caused by a worn hand. Therefore, all you need to do is to stretch the hand to solve the problem. That is what Brent told me Colt does with revolvers out of time that are returned for repair. The Kuhnhauser books explain how, so you can do it yourself.
I am not sure what the original poster is describing by "... the cylinder bar not locking tight...," but I suspect that is also the result of a worn hand, which can be corrected by stretching the hand.
I recently had a very positive experience with Michael Warman on fixing an old Colt I frame revolver. Michael's firm runs a state owned firing range in Polk City Iowa. He has an interest in Colts and is knowledgeable about them. I personally would not hesitate to send another Colt revolver to him. Just don't mess with the gun yourself, he will chastise you Just kidding Micahel... It would be worth a call to visit with him. He is on this forum, and his username is Geichal71. His website is http://dev.olofsonrange.com/?page_id=27
If I was COLT, or if I was running it, we would 'service' anything Colt ever made "period".
So would any other Company that had any self respect and pride in their Work and respect for their Customers.
If Insurance Underwriters start squawking, then a simple Liability Waiver could be drawn up for the Customer to sign and agree to, and to promise shall stay WITH the Arm, in which all liabilty from possible mis-advanture or mis-hap with the Vintage or Antique Arm is agreed to be of no responsibility of Colt.
This should never have been anything but a continuity all along, for Colt to repair, Service or adjust any Arm they ever made...and to have kept the continuity of able and educated Smiths in their Ranks to be doing it.
By now, this in itself could be an entire and profitiable Division of the Company.
Rolls Royce used to, and maybe still does, repair and or make and supply Parts for any Car they ever made, from the beginning on.
This is how it should be.
The 'American Dream' was not about 'business is for making money'...it was about being allowed to pursue one's interests, and one's interest in excellence and independence, and to make a fortune or not, or to make a good or good-enough Living, as an incidental.
I see about nothing anymore in the way of excellence or independence in 'business', and, few people anymore can even imagine anything else but those lacks, and, the motivation of greed, with all else as pretext or merely means.
Hardly anyone is even capable of believing anything else is possible!
From a business perspective, and it's important to remember that Colt IS a for-profit entity, it's absurd to try to service & maintain a parts inventory for guns that are a hundred years old, or as in Colt's case, could run back as far as 1836.
Like expecting GM to keep a full inventory of parts & trained people to service a 1901 Oldsmobile.
Models become obsolete & get superseded by new models. Totally unreasonable for a mass market gunmaker to keep a model going forever.
It would not & could not be profitable as a sideline or anything else.
The money tied up in inventory & associated costs would not justify the return.