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I am curious about your question and its relationship to the Python in your attached photos. By the way, the Python you show is 100% authentic, all the way to its unusual box label, and "Date Of Shipment". This particular 3" Model, with its "standard production" barrel roll-marks, is a tough one to find and is probably the one most often counterfeited.
 

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My recent research is showing that many of these Pythons had serial numbers that would indicate 1980 production.

They were actually put together in 1982-1983.

I'm still trying to pin down how many blue ones were made during this time.
 

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You have to think that the frames, which have the serial number, could have been overproduced. Creating a stockpile. So in "83 whenever they decided to make a 3" barrel Python, it is possible that the frames they went on, were in fact made in '80. That would make sense. I could see the market being slow at that period of time, considering the release of the 8" barrel and the 3" barrel, and the few years of Coltguard, then the emergence of the STS Python. All that could represent a marketing attempt to pick up sales. If true, they could have been sitting on a stockpile of frames.
 
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