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Unless the gun in question is a gift in the first place, right?!
A gift is a gift and supposedly you can do whatever you want with a gift ... unless it comes from a special person (John Wayne/Samuel Colt, etc.) or commemorates a special occasion (50 years of marriage?). At that point, the gun is no longer just a python as it has a story.

As for changing the barrel or refinishing the gun, send it back to Colt. This will involve a lengthy wait and additional expense. I'm not saying this shouldn't be done in various cases as you get back a really nice gun that is completely checked out. And it will be done by Colt -- save the documentation in this case.

But refinishing/smithing by someone not an expert like Colt puts you and your gun at risk. It can be done very nicely, and we see this with many "flawless/collector grade" guns. But, they usually will not letter (archive) correctly.

So if you have a shooter, shoot it. If not, ... whatever. You can always pick the gun up, keep it for a while, learn more about the Pythons and see what they are, and then trade it towards another python more to your liking.

There's always something to be said about having a python in hand as opposed to still looking for one. As for many of us, we have at least one python in hand as we look for more opportunities to upgrade our collections.
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