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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone!

My father-in-law asked me to do a little research and see if I could find out anything about an old gun he has had in his collection. The only marking or "model number" that I could find on it was DA-38. It has a very low serial number(3256) but doesn't seem to have the Colt Logo stamped anywhere on it. The Colt name is stamped into the top of the barrel though. Do any of you who are knowledgeable about older Colts have any information and an approximate value on it?

Here are a few pics I took of it... Thanks in advance!

genes gun 1.jpg genes gun 3.jpg genes gun 2.jpg
 

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Welcome to the forum. That's a Colt 1892. Looks like a military version with the wood stocks. The number under the crane is actually not the serial number but an assembly number. The serial number on these is on the butt.
This is where you want to look for the serial number

 

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That means someone has ground the numbers off. There were probably military markings on the butt at one time as well. Unfortunately this is all too common with these revolvers.
That decreased the value quite a bit and also depending on who you ask makes the gun illegal. A bit of a controversial subject here on the forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Interesting... It doesn't appear to have any grind marks on it. If it was ground, it was also apparently expertly polished.
 

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The markings on the but would have looked like this. Apparently on the military versions the serial was at the bottom and not at the top.

1903Coltbuttframemarkings.jpg

The gun was introduced by Colt in 1892. There were a few changes throughout production but basically the same revolver was made until 1907.
 

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For more photos and information on these revolvers I started a photo thread on them a while back:

http://www.coltforum.com/forums/photos-area/33388-colt-das-1889-1908-photo-thread.html

I've owned quite a few of these over the years but am no expert on them. The resident expert on these early Colt DA revolvers is Bob Best. He goes by the nickname "COLTDAGUY" here.
This thread really ought to be moved to the revolvers section so you get more hits. I'll message Mitch and see if he will move it over there.
 

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Here is a photo of my Army revolver with the Butt stamps. It is a little earlier than yours. Also, the second photo shows the acceptance stamps on the left sideplate. I did not see any on yours...are there any on yours?

IMG_0818.JPG IMG_0816.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Appreciate you getting it moved to a more appropriate forum! No, this one my father in law owns has no stamps or markings like the one you posted above. However, the cylynder release does have a number stamped on it...
 

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Appreciate you getting it moved to a more appropriate forum! No, this one my father in law owns has no stamps or markings like the one you posted above. However, the cylynder release does have a number stamped on it...
The cylinder release should also have the number that is stamped under the crane on it, or at least three of the numbers. Again that is an assembly number.
 

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Fortunately, the early ones used the assembly number as the sn. Based on the 4-digit number it would be a model 1892. The cylinder has been updated to a 1901 version, so you may see a 1901, 1902 or 1903 stamped on the left side by the grip near the trigger. This would have been the date an aresenal updated the locking system.
 
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