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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
COLT, New Service, .44-40 x 7 ½?, 98% CONDITION

Is this legit? Seems like if the frame really was an over run from the military 1917 contract that it would not have the military serial number on it. I suspect it is a refinished 1917 with a new barrel and cylinder. Any thoughts?
 

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The 201000 serial number should be on the frame under the crane. Military serial numbers ended just shy of 155000, and were stamped on the butt. Barrel markings and finish look original, but frame looks a little soft. Has ampersand (&) on the left rear trigger guard where final inspector would normally be.

Unless Colt had some 50,000 extra serial numbered frames on hand when the contract was cancelled I don't know how that number could have been on the butt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The colt serial number on the frame and crane(assuming) is 201022 the military number on the but is 48694 which is about the right correlation between the two for the 1917. I do not see and of the inspectors marks on the upper rear of the frame though. Wish he had a factory letter to document it.
 

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Where is the information that it still has the serial number 48694 on the butt?
There's a photo of the "butt" in the listing.

Also do the M1917's have the "VP" mark on the trigger guard ?

Maybe Colts just used this Army frame , reused it, to make a 44-40 commercial model ?
 

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This is just my opinion, but IF Colt used a previously serialed number Military Contract Frame, would they not have "shaved" the info of the Butt before making into a commercial pistol????? I don't feel the US would have liked the markings left the Frame.

The Ampersand also indicated a Colt rework too......right?
 

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There's a photo of the "butt" in the listing.

Also do the M1917's have the "VP" mark on the trigger guard ?

Maybe Colts just used this Army frame , reused it, to make a 44-40 commercial model ?
OK, didn't scroll far enough. The VP and ampersand would seem to indicate that Colt reworked a military issue Model 1917 to caliber .44-40. Colt did not question where a military pistol came from, and would rework them for a customer. They always used the original serial number, and occasionally you will see a Model 1911 that was sent in for repair/refinish that had the receiver replaced, but the original serial number was used preceded with an R for replaced.

Colt Model 1917 Revolver No. 48694 was original shipped to Springfield Armory April 1, 1918.
 

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Well I have a Colt 1917 in .45 Colt, that was properly converted from .45 ACP. I suspect the one in question was done likewise.
 

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OK, didn't scroll far enough. The VP and ampersand would seem to indicate that Colt reworked a military issue Model 1917 to caliber .44-40. Colt did not question where a military pistol came from, and would rework them for a customer. They always used the original serial number, and occasionally you will see a Model 1911 that was sent in for repair/refinish that had the receiver replaced, but the original serial number was used preceded with an R for replaced.

Colt Model 1917 Revolver No. 48694 was original shipped to Springfield Armory April 1, 1918.
JohnnyP has hit it right on the head. The barrel has a 1926 patent date on it. More than likely it is a 1917 that someone sent to Colt and had the barrel and cylinder replaced and the gun re-blued. I wouldn't mind owning it, but not for that price, since it's a rework. I have several guns that have been altered by Colt at later dates, 2 barrel changes, 1 cylinder change and 2 re-finishes, but they all have rework marks.
 

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That price seems high even for an original 44-40 chambered New Service. Colt 75 price assessment is probably really close to what it will take to sell the gun as any owner of that gun will have to make excuses for it or have some story to tell to those who handle it. With that said, it's probably a wonderful shooter. I have one 7 1/2" New Service in 45 colt and everything down range out to 200 yards is fair game.
 

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If the big Colt was factory original in that condition it would be a steal. As a rework, certainly worth more since the rework was done at Colt, but not the asking price.
 

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There are no rework marks on the gun from the pictures. The "&" is an inspection mark and is in the wrong place to indicate a rework. It would be on the right rear trigger guard if it were. I would expect on a post-1926 rework to see a three or four digit number code telling when it was reworked. The "VP" proof strongly suggests it was done at Colt

The gun started as a standard M1917. Someone has removed all the military marks (almost all - there's a faint portion of a "JMG" mark left on the upper left frame), and finished the gun to factory standards. The barrel and cylinder were replaced from current civilian stock. The work is immaculate.

Value? The gun was first built at Colt, and then it was rebuilt at Colt with the same care as a regular commercial revolver. You guys can argue over its worth, but a seller and buyer will have to decide that.

Buck
 
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The military markings on the butt are fully intact. The military serial number was applied after finish, and on the revolver shown have been sanded over, but with no attempt to remove them. The military acceptance mark was normally very lightly and sometime partially struck, and did not survive the polish when rebuilt.
 
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