Colt Forum banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm sort of in the dark about a 1892 series revolver I purchased today. The serial number is 237786 and the assembly number on the cyclinder latch, frame and crane is 730. It is 38 Special caliber with black hard rubber checkered grips and the number 730 is scratched into the underside of the grips too. The finish is about 80%. (1) Is this a commercial model? (2) What year was it manufactured? (3) What would its model designation be? (Its not marked on the bottom of the frame) (4) What would the approximate value of the pistol be?

Thanks for any info that anyone can provide.

AmmoMac
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,386 Posts
Hi AmmoMac,

In answer to your questions:

1) From your description it appears to be a commercial model.

2) It was probably shipped about mid-1904.

3) The model designation was determined by the type of grips that it wore originally. It would be a New Navy Model if it has the word "COLT" at the top of the grips.(Also a small "N" inside the crane on the frame). If it has the Horse with two small roses and the small word "colt" then it would be a New Army Model.

I'm confused here about the frame designation... you said "...its not marked on the bottom of the frame..." The military guns were the only ones that were marked on the bottom of the grip frame... HOWEVER ALL Colt DA revolvers in this series had the serial number on the butt.

You also mentioned it was a 38 Special... The left side of the barrel should be marked "COLT DA 38"... This revolver was chambered for the .38 Long Colt cartridge, not the .38 Special cartridge and I WOULD NOT SHOOT 38 SPECIAL ROUNDS IN IT! Keep in mind it is over 100 years old and was not originally chambered for the .38 Special.

As for value, without photos it is hard to tell, but 80% to me indicate consideable finish wear and possibly pits so I would guess between $150 and $300 depending on exactly what it looks like... Hope that helps! Bob Best
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ColtDAGuy,
First of all let me thank you for your reply. Sorry for the confusion about the marking on the frame. Yes there is a six digit serial number on the bottom of the frame. No other markings on the bottom of the frame though. It has the Rampant colt and two roses and the small word "COLT" on the grip. The side of the barrel absolutely is marked "38 Special". I tried a 38 Special in the cylinder and it will fit(Did not fire it though). A .357 round will not fit. Could it be a replacement barrel and cylinder? The patents on the barrel are dated AUG 5, 1884 NOV 6 88 MAR 5 95. I could not understand the assembly numbers not matching the last digits of the serial number also. Any thoughts? Thanks in advance.

AmmoMac
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,386 Posts
HI,

Colt made a few barrels marked .38 Special in the serial number range of your gun before they became involved with a propriatary claim by S&W. Colt went back to marking the barrels "COLT DA 38" ... Can you post some photos of your gun?

If not, does the frame top strap above the cylinder have the more sharply milled front or the gently curved front section? Is there a dished out area in the frame where the hammer slot is? Photos would help if you can... this is a minor variation and I am interested as I keep a database on the different variations of this model.

When I wrote my book on the Colt New Army and Navy Model revolvers, this area was kind of sketchy ... I just checked my database and I have another gun listed that is similiarly marked a few hundred numbers away from yours.

Any additional information you could provide on the gun would be appreciated... Thanks! Bob Best

P.S. - I STILL WOULD NOT SHOOT 38 SPECIAL AMMO IN THIS GUN!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,386 Posts
Sorry I missed the second part of your question... The assembly numbers in most cases on civilian production guns did not relate in any way to the serial number... There are exceptions to this but they are special contracts and such... your gun should NOT have a matching assembly number to the last three or four digits of the serial number. Bob Best
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks again for the info. As soon as I can retreive my digital camera from my son in a few days I will take some photos of the areas of interest. Is there anything else you would like to see? How many of the New Army pistols were marked in that way?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,386 Posts
Hi AmmoMac,

All of the ones I have listed appear in the 237xxx serial number range ...

Also Colt was shipping the New Navy Models at the same time and they are listed as two seperate models in Colt's shipping records, so there may be New Navy models too that are marked this way... No one has reported any New Navy Models to me...

Like most marking variations, most people are expecting the barrel to say "38 something" and don't mention it says ".38 Special" instead of "DA 38"...

I have seen several that have been rebarreled at a later time by Colt and have the rework marking and a different barrel patent dates that are marked "38 Special"... but the ones with the 95 patent date and no rework marks are most likely a marking variation that resulted from the problem with S&W and their propriatary cartridge name... ".38 S&W Special"... Hope that helps. Bob Best
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,386 Posts
GREAT PHOTOS!

That answers my question about the frame... it is an early style... I think you were conservative on the 80% condition... At least in the photos it looks better than that! THANKs for the information! Bob Best
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Glad you got the info that you wanted from the photos.

I'm notorious for being conservative on judging the finish on guns. Any thoughts on the value of this pistol now that you have seen some pictures?
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top