Colt Forum banner

1 - 20 of 46 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
New Colt enthusiast so take it easy on me...

I bought this gun yesterday for $5,400. Guy said he doesn't think it's factory engraved so at least he was honest. Said he thought it might have been sent back to colt to engrave in the late 1890's... (questionable. I think he lied to me there based on my feedback from colt.)

I contacted Colt and they said it's unlikely factory original engraving due to Colt 45 roll mark on barrel wasn't used until 1890 and this was made in 1881.

However, every factory engraved gun I see looks VERY similar. There are no engraver marks or initials. I haven't looked under the grips but I'm scared to death to do so.

Thoughts on who / when might have engraved this or is it just a major crap shoot? Wondering if time frame it might have been engraved. The ridges feel somewhat sharp in some areas. I'm wondering if it is old engraving but sat in a display case for decades... Would be awesome if it was done by Cuno Helfricht... Is it possible the owner sent the gun back in to Colt to get engraved and Cuno did it? Did Cuno leave any markings in his design to tell if it was in fact him?

Was $5,400 too much to pay for this gun?
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
745 Posts
Howdy from N Texas and welcome to the community. It is a real nice looker, unfortunately there are more than a few out there that capitolize on the inexperienced when it comes to the Colt SAA. What matters is if you like it, everything else is just noise. Like Bill said, making a mistake with these only makes you stronger and smarter for the future.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
547 Posts
It looks as though the cylinder matches the frame and trigger guard. The engraving is too sharp to be original when compared to the serial numbers. It has been replated. But, it has the extended hammer screw like it was made for a shoulder stock. Is there a notch on the bottom of the grip frame?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,243 Posts
Should have a numbered cylinder & barrel. 45 Colt looks like it was newly stamped on, not original marking. Obviously modern, poorly fitted grips. Serial numbers have been buffed, and engraving looks modern. Hammer checkering heavily buffed. Goofy hammer screw. Mating of ejector housing to frame looks ragged. Pictures of other numbers, barrel marking, patent dates would tell more. Looks like modern work to me. More pictures would help. The quality and style of the engraving looks nice.

You asked. $5400 is a lot of money for modern work on an antique gun. These antique SAAs are usually best left in their original state. This is not a restoration, but rather an engraving and refinishing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
398 Posts
You asked. $5400 is a lot of money for modern work on an antique gun. These antique SAAs are usually best left in their original state. This is not a restoration, but rather an engraving and refinishing.
While I agree that $5400 is a lot for modern work on an antique gun, and maybe its not what you were aiming to buy, but at least take consolation in knowing the money is there. I don't know SAA's well, but a first gen in workable condition will run you at least $2,000+. And that level of engraving from a reputable engraver is at minimum another $2,000, and goes up from there. Then on top of that, even with improper fitting grips, if those are genuine pearl, they could easily be $250-600. Any gun that's ever been engraved post factory has also been re-finished, so that's not really a minus unless they changed it from the original color. In the end, if it's not factory, you still have a really nice looking gun that you didn't pay anymore than it'd cost to do all the work yourself.

You oughta try to see if you can indentify tbe engraver. That would help you a lot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
391 Posts
Well for comparison, up here in Canada, theres a 1925, 45, 7 1/2, case hardened frame, in very good original condition with rubber grips for $6100 US. Not engraved. Not plated. No ivory. But original. So its all what you want. This one is more collectable but yours is an outstanding looking piece. You could get your money back out down the road, or not get beat up, if so desired.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
896 Posts
I think its a very nice 1st gen. Did you overpay, I don't think so. Use a magnifier and go over the whole gun. May be under the grips. But most engravers mark their name somewhere. Some even incorporate their initials into the engraving.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,619 Posts
One side of the screw appears much larger than the other side. That would not work with a stock.

Yes thats is how the Skeletal screws look I have three sets of them on three of my SAA and use the stock. One side is bigger then the other. In this pic you can see the smaller size that goes through the gun the other side is wider because its where the screw head is.
711207
 
1 - 20 of 46 Posts
Top