Assuming the finish is factory, you have one of ~2200 nickel-plated 6" .22LR Diamondbacks made in 1979. (Post the SN and we'll confirm birthday.) Congratulations! Blue Book says it's about $700, but knock off a bit for no box/papers. The nickeled .38 Spec. 6" models were made in greater numbers.
I see your price but I have one question.Where are you going to find one for that price.All I have seen or 1000 plus and a NIB is as much as 1500.I can not even find a blue 6" for less than 795.00 in 99.5% condition.I will be open to any offers for Diamondbacks.
I sold a blue 6" D.B. recently for $700. No box, no papers. A S&W 17 will shoot just as well for half the price. I've decided I'm not a collector and I'm gonna shoot what I own. Unfortunatly any Smith or Colt anything made before about '95 is now "collectable". I bought an as new Trooper III this a.m..
I saw one yesterday at a gunshow in similar described condition for $900. Most blued Diamondbacks, in .22 and .38 caliber, were in the $700 - $1,000 range, depending on condition and whether had a box.
I am a Diamondback collector and I have eight (all different) in my safe. I have one of the 6" 22lr nickel in a box, all tags etc. unfired but turned. I have been offered $1400 by the dealer who sold it to me and turned it down. Look bighornhunter, they only made 2200 pieces and the price will only go UUUUPPPPP> diamonback68
I inherited them from my Dad a few years ago. He got them in a Bank promotional giveaway 20 years ago! I have the boxes and most paperwork. I don't have the custom shop letter or targets. The pistols have been handled and fired some, so they have light bolt marks on the cylinder. I've had them for years but didn't realize what they were until a few day's ago I started searching the internet for info. Now I'm obsessed, hence the "bitten" handle. I wanted to start shooting them, but decided I'd better check to see if they were valuable first. WOW! I've contacted the original dealer who handled the Bank promotion to see if he has any additional info. My Dad never threw anything away, so I'm going to have my Mom check her safe to see if there are any letters from the Bank, or the Custom Shop in there. After Dad passed, we went through his things, but we may not have checked everything.
I'm new to this collecting game, since I just realized I have a pair of guns that would be a centerpiece in many collections. What is a good souce to learn about Custom Shop limited run offerings? The box labels have a 3 digit number written in the upper left corner, above the Colt logo. Is this their run number, or something else? The Python label is machine printed, with "Rosewood" and numbers in the upper left and upper right hand written. The Diamondback label is entirely hand written. The number in the upper right matches the number stamped on the trigger guard by the grip, as in the last photo. Is this an inspection or gunsmith I.D.?
[This message has been edited by Snakebit (edited 06-30-2003).]
Snakebit: I can only go but what I've got, but on some of the boxes the numbers above the logo are the manufacturing date and some seem to be a manufacturing date code. The "1" on your gun above the grip is some kind of gunsmith mark, cause I have some with a "U" some an "O" etc. Most all boxes have hand writing on the label. I can tell you the "custom'shop" labels were usually tan and brown and not the usual "gold" type labels. I hope that is some help, as I am still learning and I've been working on Diamondbacks for six years. The journey is part of the fun. diamonback68
Hey Snakebit, neat photos, I've got to get me a digital camera. The Diamondback was built in 1982. The "D" in the model number as you may know stands for the "D" size frame. They made Diamondbacks from 1966 to 1986, twenty years and stopped. Again see what I mean about the tan and brown label, definately custom shop, also the regular run "gold" labels said "diamondback" right on them.
The "I" the Python model number stands for "I" frame, and as you can see is the big brother of the Diamonback. They started making Pythons in 1955 and because they had such great feel, balance, internal works, and trigger, they became the Mercedes-Benz of hand guns at the time. And because they were so popular, that is why they came out with the little brother----Diamondback, but when they stopped making them in 1986 they became more collectable than the Python because they (the Python) stayed in production until just recently. Been any help?
This discussion has triggered some memories of when my Dad got the guns. I was a teenager at the time. I remember now that the Diamondback had to be custom made because he wanted the .22 6" nickel, but it wasn't a production item. I guess the Python was a production gun they just put Custom grips on. I still need to get details of why a bank was giving away guns. I remember a big (heated?) discussion between my Mom and Dad about moving a chunk of cash to a bank in another state. Dad said something about guns being worth more than the interest. That would certainly be true today!
The digital camera is a new toy I got a couple of days ago. It's a must have for an internet Forum junkie!