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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently acquired a First Issue (circa 1932) DS. It's pretty holster worn, but locks up tightly. It was accompanied by an Audely holster, also well worn.

I'm no Colt expert, but the sights appear to be an aftermarket alteration. Can someone on this forum confirm (or deny) that? I'd also appreciate any information on the maker of the aftermarket grips.

I'll attempt to post some pics below. I can't seem to put more than one image in a post, however, so please check the replies.

 

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Welcome to the forum. I see you're using Photobucket. An easy way to do multiple pics is to check the selection boxes for the desired pics, scroll to the bottom and select Generate HTML, scroll down to the HTML choices and select and copy the IMG list and paste it into your post. I'm sure others would like to see the latch side for markings and are more expert than I. Yes, the standard front sight in that time would be a complete half moon. Interesting stocks. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Just saw the second view. The "loops" on the stocks look like Roper, but I am not the expert, just have observed some other models recently. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Just in case anyone is interested in seeing the Audely holster:

 

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Someones going to have a field day with this one because the rear sights are a little different too and the hammer is modified/replaced. /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the welcome and information on posting multiple pics, A1A.

Markings: On the left side of the barrel is "38 DETECTIVE SPECIAL." On the left side of the frame near the top of the grip appears the rampant colt. The serial number (4009xx)appears on the crane and on the frame underneath it. There's a "T" above the serial number on the frame. Beneath the grips on the left side, there's a "2" near the spring attachment pin and a "W" near the lower rear corner.
 

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You have a radically customized DS.
The front is of course different, the rear appears to have been welded on, indicated by the slightly different color of the bluing around the sight.

The hammer has been converted to a Target type.

All in all, it appears to be a top level custom job, probably not factory.

That hammer looks better than the stock Diamondback hammer.

I'm not sure about the "T" on the frame, this could be either an inspectors stamp, OR it could mean the gun was targeted at the Colt plant.

The stamps on the grip from are standard Colt inspectors stamps found on all Colt revolvers.

All in all, a very unique and interesting gun.
Obviously someone's take on what a combat "snubby" should be.
I probably wouldn't have wanted to get in the original owner's face.
 

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Interesting and unique...do you know the owner who modified it? Looks like a very neat piece. Thanks for sharing.
 

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I don\'t have any technical information but that is

a very nice and interesting piece. The holster looks to be in great shape also.

Steve
 

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I'll join the chorus. Fascinating gun. I too think it's real professional custom work. It would be interesting to find who did the work and who ordered it.
 

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The stocks appear to be Roper's. If you can post a picture of the inside of them I can confirm/deny it. The hammer is a King "Cockeyed" hammer, made from the original. The sights are probably King's work as well. If you would like to know more about Roper or King please email me and I can fill you in with a fair amount of information.
 

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What I wouldn't give to have my snubs have sights that I could actually see, like those!
And that vintage holster... wow. The open trigger guard just looking to snag an errant index finger. As beautiful as the leatherwork is, I'd be hesitant to use it.
Nice work on the gun. A good custom is always interesting.
Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you all for the replies. They're very informative. In response to some of your comments/inquiries:

I don't know the original owner's identity; this revolver followed me home from the neighborhood gunshop. Based on the Audley holster and the bluing wear, I'd guess the original owner might have been in some sort of plainclothes law enforcement or security work, wearing the gun every day.

I hadn't thought about the hammer. As several of you pointed out, it's not stock. It has a little more recurve to it than a Python's hammer (making it just a tad easier reach for a thumb) and has finer checkering.

I agree the Audley holster shouldn't be used for carry. The trigger guard retention clip looks like an accident waiting to happen and I understand the design resulted in a number of self-inflicted wounds back in the day.

I'll try to photograph the inside of the grips soon so Kwill can confirm they're Ropers.
 

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Here's a top view of a similar King hammer on an OMT:

Here's a side view of one on a S&W. The hammers on Smith's were usually marked:

Here's a full Colt-King Super Target conversion, also with Roper stocks:
 

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KWILL,
NICE looking Roper grips.

For those who don't know, the Audley holster shown above was an early attempt at an improved method of retaining the gun without a leather safety strap and snap.
This was a method of retaining the gun and also was an early form of a "snatch resistant" holster.

Inside the holster is a formed steel spring. When the gun is inserted, the spring snaps into the trigger guard, locking it in place and preventing the gun from being pulled from the holster.
To draw, the user put his trigger finger into the guard and pressed the spring, releasing the gun.

In it's day it was quite the "thing" for knowledgeable gunmen.
 

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A fascinating example of a "thinking mans" interpretation of what an ideal snub revolver should have been of that time. The features seen on this highly customized revolver suggest to me that it's owner took significant measures to produce what is probably a very accurate short barreled fixed target sight type revolver. The King "cockeyed" hammer and Walter Roper grips speak to the owners fine taste and committment to achieving a truly superior example of a combat revolver in a small package. It seems to me, judging from those features, that single action shooting was a primary intention. I bet the action is as smooth as silk, with a crisp single action let off and probably received the same level of custom attention as the exterior. My guess is that King's Gun Works did the customization, not Colt. The Audley Folsom (I have several in my collection) was, as previously stated, an innovation of the time. The spring loaded retention feature was reproduced by Jay Pee, Charles Greenblatt and several other makers right up to the 1980's. It was still in use by the NYPD until they transitioned to auto pistols. It does share the infamous reputation of being prone to accidental discharges, but was never intended to be a fast drawing design feature, but rather a "snatch resistant" feature to prevent take away's. Unfortunately, after many years of service, the cotton linen thread would deteriorate to such a point that the mainseam could be torn with little effort and the revolver snatched as a result. There are several well documented incidents where this did occur. It's a very fine and interesting revolver.....certainly deserves more research. Well done! /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
If it's a King "Cockeyed" hammer, it's of the both sides variety. Perhaps the original owner wanted the capability to use it single action with his weak hand in a pinch.
 
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