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I've posted this question elsewhere and have yet to find out anything. Figured upon discovering this site, I'd find the help I'm looking for.

In the Colt 1995 catalog (woman riding horse on cover) there is listed on pg. 13 Model #D2445 "Police Positive". I've yet to ever come across one and was wondering if they are something uncommon. There's just something appealing about them.
 

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The Police Positive was a small framed revolver in .38 Colt (or S&W). The Police Positive Special was made with a slightly longer frame to hold the .38 Special cartridge. It was made until fairly recently and the Diamondback and Detective Special were built on the same D frame.

Many folks say Police Positive when they are really referring to the PPS.
 

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The Police Positive and the PP Special were a 'bread and butter' item in the Colt lineup until WWII.

After WWII, Colt offered the Detective Special, Diamondback, and Cobra with 4" barrels, so the PPS disappeared.

In 1972 Colt did a redesign of the appearance of many of their guns, by adding a barrel shroud. At this time, other than the Diamondback, few, if any 4" "D" frame guns were made.

In the late 80's a very few 4" "D" frame guns called The Viper were made. This looked like a standard Detective Special with a half-length shroud underlug.
If you can find a picture somewhere, you might like the looks of the Viper even more, and while also rare, the Viper can be found a little easier.

In the mid 90's Colt was in real trouble, models appeared and disappeared quickly, and the D2445 was one of these.

The D2445 Police Positive, was a VERY short run of 4" "D" frame guns made to help use up the last of the older "D" sized guns.
Colt had introduced the new SF-VI (Small Frame-Six Shot), replacement for the old Colt small framed guns, and they needed to sell the last of the older type frames to make production room for the new guns.

These new "SF-VI" guns were sold as the SF-VI, The DSII, and The Magnum Carry.
A few DSII's were sold with 4" barrels, and this gun looks like the D2445 PP model, only with the new frame and in stainless steel.

The D2445 PPS is fairly rare, with very small production numbers. I would imagine most of them are being bought up by Colt collectors.

So, yes they are very uncommon, and difficult to find.

[This message has been edited by dfariswheel (edited 02-03-2003).]
 

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Dfariswheel:

Thank you very much for the excellant information. A number of previous post on diff. forums produced nothing. I'll try finding a Viper or 4" DSII. Seems as though those may be easier to locate. Thanx again!
 

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Dfariswheel you are the all knowing guru of all things Colt! I have learned quite a bit from your posts on this forum.


------------------
Mike
 

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Thanks.
The product of a well-spent youth.

I was always a Colt man, even as a kid, and when I could actually buy guns, I went wild on Colt's. For years I wouldn't buy a "mere" S&W.

During the 70's through the early 90's I had at least one of just about everything Colt made, (usually 3-4 actually), and then too, I was a Master watchmaker and gunsmith.
I taught myself Colt revolver smithing, and I was off to the races.

Now that I'm retired, can't afford new guns, and Colt (sniff) isn't doing much, I get my smiles helping people out with Colt questions.

Ask away.
 

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Ok in order:

1. I didn't mean to imply that the Diamondback was made RIGHT after the war. Colt firearms are usually defined by the Pre/Post war period, and I was discussing the ERA, not actual dates.

2.You're right, the PPS didn't disappear, I blew that one. Plead late night posts.
However, the PPS WAS made during this time, but production fluctuated enough that that some years the only PPS's that were actually produced were for mostly foreign police sales, and some years there was little ACTUAL production at all.
Records may show production, but some times none were actually available for US sales.

There is a considerable amount of confusion with the Colt line-up in the later post-war years. The PPS was sometimes produced, but not listed in Colt's catalog, sometimes it was in the catalog, but not actually available.
During this time, most police and civilian shooter's wanted either 2" barreled revolvers or larger framed guns. The market for the 4" "D" frame fluctuated enough, that some times Colt just didn't turn many out.

3. "The Detective Special was never made with a 4" barrel".
I beg to differ. The late Colt collector John Wright had in his collection a post-72 FACTORY 4" DS with a full shrouded barrel. This is a VERY rare item, almost unknown.
I may have implied that this was a common item, and I apologize for that presumption.

4. I wasn't discussing the TOTAL design changes to the Colt "D" frame guns, and I didn't bother to mention the changes to the length of the butt. Or the changes to the ejector rod system , hammer, safety, trigger, frame, grips, cylinder retention system, cylinder, and other, more obscure changes.

6. I didn't mean to imply that the Viper was a steel gun, I simply meant that the poster might want to take a look at it, because he might like the appearance better.

My credentials: I'm a retired Master watchmaker/pro gunsmith specializing in Colt revolvers. Many of my family in Connecticut were long time Colt employee's who, in the 60's to the late 80's kept me up to date with Colt info.

I do make mistakes, but not by intention.
 

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Fair enough. If the 4" DS is "VERY rare, almost unknown" I guess that would explain why I have never seen one. Although I still don't understand why they would make one since a 4" DS would actually be a PPS since they are the same gun save the barrel length.

On the issue of availability, both Colt and S&W frequently sold guns that did not appear in the catalogs, and just as often guns that were listed could not be found. The vagaries of the marketplace and mass production. It just seems to me that I saw no shortage of 4" PPSs during the period you indicated they were hard to find. But maybe this was a regional thing and they may have been left over inventory from when supplies were good.

I agree that forum postings can sometimes be vague and mistakes happen. To everyone. Thanks for the clarification.
 

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I hate to be the one to spoil the party, but either I am misunderstanding something or dfariswheel is giving some serious misinformation.

He states that after WWII Colt made the D'back. Well, yes, it was after the war but it was quite a while after, like 1966, not right after as the post seems to imply. He goes on to say that the Police Positive Special disappeared with the intro of the D'back. Not true. The PPS was made continuously until at least the late 1980s or early 1990s. I have a 4" PPS made in 1978.

Dafariswheel goes on to say that the Detective Special was offered in a 4" barrel length. Also incorrect. A few 3" Detective Specials were made, but otherwise they were all 2" guns and no 4" Detective Specials were ever produced. By the way, the Detctive Special and the Police Positive Special are exactly the same gun except for barrel length. The model stamping is on the barrel. Take the 4" barrel off a Police Positive Special and install a 2" barrel a Detective Special and nobody would know it wasn't an original Dick Special unless they requested a history of the serial number from Colt.

Dfariswheel notes the design changes in 1972, and he is correct as this was when Colt added the barrel shroud to the revolvers that didn't have it previously. But I gasp at his statement that few 4" D frame guns were being made at this time. In fact, there was no shortage of them. He also forgot to mention the previous major design change which occurred in 1966 when the grip frame was shortened on the D frame. The D'back has always had the short grip, while other D frame guns will be long or short depending on year of manufacture. This is why grips do not interchange between pre and post 1966 D frame revolvers.

I believe the Viper was basically an alloy framed Police Positive Special. Or it might have been a less deluxe version of that gun, with a matt finish rather than a high gloss blue. It's one or the other but I forget which it was for sure. I think the Viper was introduced and made concurrently with the much older PPS, and it is likely they were both dropped at about the same time. I don't think the Viper was a replacement for the PPS, it was another version of it.

All of this applies to the older guns, made before the 1990s when Colt combined models and introduced the DSII and SV-whatever. I wasn't paying much attention Colt by then.

Perhaps I have misunderstood? Maybe he wasn't really saying what I thought he said?
 

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I have pre war Fitz Pistol grips to fit Agent, Diamondback, Dective Special, Police Positive, Police Positive & Special, Cobra and Viper pistols.

There are three frames that I can fit with Fitz Grips that were invented because policemen could not hit 25 yard police range targets accurately with their off duty weapons. So Fitz invented grips that filled in officers hands for a better grip by extending the grip below the frame and partially filling in behind the trigger guard.

I only have a few left dug out of decades of storage.
Paul Jones [email protected]
 

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I have been coming by these boards infrequently because of the lack of action. I thought I had regiestered a long time ago when I discovered the boards, but, in trying to post today, I could not until I registered (again?). I am glad to see it appears things are picking up a little.

Like dfw, I have been messing with Colts for a lifetime, and was glad to see Dr. Pig challenge the dfw post on the late PPS issues. Likewise, I am glad to see the clarification posted by dfw.

Now a 4-inch DS is hard for me to believe, but, with Colt, we all know anything is possible. (For example, I have a lettered Huntsman with factory adjustable Targetsman sights, clearly a factory error.) Did the Wright 4-inch DS have a factory letter? It sounds like a DS with with a Diamondback barrel, although apparently with no vent rib. That implies a one-off special barrel, which really seems hard to believe. I would like to see what the factory letter said about the 4-inch DS.

dfw, I envy your contacts in Colt. Sometimes, that is the best way to explain these unusual things.
 
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