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I recently acquired a bunch of cylinders and bolts in an old cardboard box marked "expensive parts". I earlier posted the long fluted cylinder. The old refinished cylinder I'm posting now I think may be a very early Ainsworth US model cylinder (#3463 or #13463) as follows:
1. 4 digit SNs on barrel side done from 1874-1878 on US Gov models.
2. SN #3463 falls within 11-18-1873 shipment SNs 3414-3651 to US Gov.
3. SN #13463 falls within 9-10-1874 shipment SNs 12892-13524 to US Gov.
4. "C" inspector mark on cylinder back done in 1875. (could have been done 1874/75 as well)
5. Small length & depth of cylinder stop approaches typical of 1874 &1875 production.
6. Small sized cylinder stops also typical of 1874 & 1875.
7. Unbeveled cylinder front edges.
What do experts think? IMG_3166.jpg IMG_3167.jpg IMG_3168.jpg
 

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Re blued. Cylinder approaches too large. "C" a factory inspector stamp.
No A or P on cylinder ?
May be civilian as the earlier cylinders had 4 digits.
It's definitely early.

Then again, with those approaches it may NOT be that early. Could be into the 20-30xxx range, if memory serves.
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When did Colt start putting a bevel on the front edge of the cylinders?
The lack of a beveled cylinder suggests this cylinder cannot be that early. Cylinders on early revolvers were beveled and the bevel diminished over time in later Single Action Army revolvers, not the other way around.
 

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The lack of a beveled cylinder suggests this cylinder cannot be that early. Cylinders on early revolvers were beveled and the bevel diminished over time in later Single Action Army revolvers, not the other way around.
Then why does Wilkerson's chapter on "Ainsworth' Model #179-#14838. P.213 say "early characteristics" "the un-beveled cylinder and ejector housing tip". Just trying to learn!
 

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I am not sure how or why Wilkerson came to those conclusions. For reference, check out the auction from this past week at www.morphyauctions.com 22 - 23 Oct 2019 Several good examples of Ainsworth range revolvers and cylinders, all with bevels. Lot 1314, serial no 8887 has a view of topstrap looking down at a clearly beveled original cylinder. Also lot 1332, serial number 6596.

https://auctions.morphyauctions.com/_A__FINE_AINSWORTH_INSPECTED_US_COLT_CAVALRY_SINGL-LOT471048.aspx

https://auctions.morphyauctions.com/_A__FINE_AINSWORTH_INSPECTED_CUSTER_RANGE_US_CAVAL-LOT474801.aspx

Edit: Here's a link to a Custer range Cavalry Model. Perhaps less beveled than later production, but still beveled more than the OPs cylinder. https://auctions.morphyauctions.com/_A__CUSTER_ERA_AINSWORTH_INSPECTED_US_COLT_CAVALRY-LOT474806.aspx
 
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