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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Requesting information. I found a shop that has a blue 6" Python with "A" factory engraving and the Colt leatherette Custom Shop hinged case. I have not checked serial number, but I'm judging it to be a late 70's/early 80's gun.

My question is - what would one expect to come with this gun besides the leathertte case? Should there be a sleeve/styrofoam liner and the regular papers/booklets? If that is missing, how does this affect value?

As far as value goes, I have no experience buying engraved guns and almost no experience trying to gauge what they "should" sell for. But, watching the auction sites and seeing contemporary Pythons sell, I feel confident that the asking price is very reasonable. Anyone care to share their opinions on what such a piece would sell for?
 

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Number one question I have is how do we know it's FACTORY engraved ? Do they have a Letter/paperwork from Colt ?
This will make or break the amount of value the gun has.
2nd question, if yes, you do have a factory Colt letter, who do they say did the engraving ?
This could help.
If it's mint unfired Colt factory engraved with Colt letter, the number could be in the thousands. It also depends on which factory engraver did the work.
If it's an unknown non-factory engraver, and the reblue is NOT factory, you're value would be a wild guess, as not many people want something like that. (At least true Colt collectors).
They would rather have an untouched, unfired, factory Blued gun. So, it's up to individual tastes on what someone would be willing to pay.
FYI, I think factory engraving started around $1000 and went up depending on who did the engraving and how much engraving was done.
So, with that in mind, you would have had to pay at todays Python costs around $2000 to have one done in factory "A" engraving.
Don't quote me on that, and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks, Jeff (GUNKWAZY)

Keep in mind, no more Pythons will be made, so that may be a good investment down the road. Only time will tell.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Jeff - Thanks for your thoughts. I agree with what you've said and it's part of why I was wondering about what else should come with the gun if it is a factory job.

If one should expect to see a cardboard sleeve/styro insert along with the custom shop leatherette case, then the end label on that sleeve would (I'd expect) reveal if there was engraving.

So, I should qualify my question by saying I've found what looks to me to be a factory engraved blue Python with "A" coverage. I've looked (lusted) at enough engraved Colt's over the years at various auctions and reputable dealers/collectors that I feel reasonably sure this is a factory gun. But I am still curious what documents and/or boxes one would expect to see that would help corroborate my belief.

The gun is in the display case with the custom shop case behind it. I haven't asked the dealer about other documentation (or even to handle the gun) on the theory that I want to walk in there with enough cash in my pocket to do the deal before I start showing any interest. That will happen at the end of next week. Maybe once I look closer, it won't be what I think it is.

Trust me - the recent news about no more Pythons got my blood flowing pretty quickly as I thought about this particular Python. I first saw it two weeks ago. For all I know, someone else has already bought it. If so, won't be the first good deal I've let slide. My regret in that instance would not be so much about any financial gain I might miss out on as that I would love to own this particular gun as the "jewel" of my modest Colt holdings.

Any more input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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It's pretty difficult to assign a value to an engraved piece, either from Colt or not. Even if it wasn't factory engraved to begin with, it may have been sent back to the Custom Shop later in its life. Whether or not it's Colt engraving will be the determining factor on price. Unless it's a steal.
Without a letter or at least the box with a good end flap, it'll be difficult to determine if it's Colt engraving. But if you get the serial number and check it for initials of the engraver, we may be able to hazard a good guess. We can put an engraver with a time period. Most times the initials are under the grips though.
If you're comfortable with the price, buy it! We can hardly wait for some pics though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks again for the info. I was thinking that the grip frame should have an indication of the origin of the engraving.

What I'm really asking is - other than the orangish-brown custom shop case, what other boxes (if any) and/or paperwork would be "standard" for a gun that had been engraved through the Colt Custom Shop?

Thanks again for any help.
 

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I would start by asking to have the grips/stocks removed in your presence. What is on them, or under them on the frame can tell you a lot.

Unless you can track who, and when, and how well known the engraver was, the gun can have minimal collector value.

Good luck! I hope it's a winner for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Robba - thanks for your input.

As it happens, and much to my surprise, I had much of my question answered by finding a "C" engraved 6" Python on GB just a moment ago.

If one looks at the pics of that gun, you will see the Colt Custom Shop leatherette case, the regular booklet/letter/ warranty card and a plain white cardboard box with end label describing the engraving that was done. So, in case anyone else wants to see an example of what at least one gun-shop says comes with such a gun, I thought I'd share.

I had told myself I wouldn't go back to look at the Python I found until I had the money in my pocket. It's in a store that sees quite a few people moving through and I won't be surprised to see that someone a lot more sophisticated than me in such matters bought it on the spot. One more week of keeping my toes crossed...

Thanks again to all who offered assistance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
In case anyone was waiting for how the story turns out - I allowed myself to go back last night to see if the Python was still there. It sold. Talked to the salesman and he said all the paperwork and everything else was with the gun and showed it as factory work.

Ah, well. I need to buy a gun safe anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
To me, the price was so "off" that it made me suspicious. Tho my inspection was limited to looking at it behind the glass in the display case, the gun looked legitimate and I believe it was as represented - a NIB Class "A" engraved 6" Python with Custom Shop case for $1,200.00.
 
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