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Discussion Starter #1
When did Colt stop making the Police Positive Special in .32 Colt NP/.32 S&W Long? The same question on the .38 Colt NP/.38 S&W? Also when did they start making the PPS/DS and other D-frames with the short grip frames? Thanks in advance.
 

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short frames were standard after 1966,but the agent and courier were available in the late 50`s early 60`s. the police pos. ended in 1943 they were chambered for the .38 short, i have never seen a p/p/special chambered for the short but i guess it`s possible. i think the p/p/s and d/s in .32 long survived into the 70`s, i would GUESS when the d/s got remodeled in 73 the .32 was dropped, i dont think i have seen a new style in that cal.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I thought that they started to shorten the frame around 1966 or thereabouts, so thanks for the confirmation. And Colt did make the PPS in .38 S&W. I know because I have one. It was made in 1955 for the Royal Hong Kong Police. It has the long square butt and a laynard ring. They probably did make it for domestic consumption as well, but the only examples of it in .38 S&W that I have seen have been for the RHKP. I have a PPS in .32 that has the short grip frame, NIB, cylinder has never even been turned on it. According to the serial number, it was made in 1965 just as they were shortening the grip frame, so this must have been one of the first of the .32's with the short frame. I have another .32 PPS that was made in 1958. I swear! that little gem has the best action that I have ever seen on a Colt. That one is my shootin' .32!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'll do what I can, but no promises. I don't have a digital camera. I have a copy of Chic Gaylord's 1960 book, Handgunner's Guide that has a real good picture of the PPS in it. Gaylord highly praised the PPS, feeling as I do, that it is a very practical carry revolver. If I can figure it out, I'll be happy to scan a picture for you. In the mean time, GunsAmerica or Auction Arms usually has some postings of the PPS with pictures.
When I took his class, Massad Ayoob told me that the PPS is a DS with a four inch barrel. My response was that, no, the DS was a PPS with a two inch barrel. As he knew that the PPS came before the DS he conceded my point, which was made half in jest. The PPS was the gun that I used at LFI.
 

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no problem if you cant, i have never had a pp/s but i have seen them, just never in the .38 short. i do have a pp target in .22 which i really enjoy shooting on occasion, a little sweetie. regards dux /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My RHKP looks just like any other PPS from the 1950's. It has the square butt, long frame. One of the things at first glance that sets this little revolver apart is the lanyard ring. Another thing that is quite notable is the finish--a dull finish that reminds me of parkerizing. Hong Kong after all has a tropical climate. I would guess that Colt sold a lot of the handguns that they chambered for .38 S&W to the British Colonial Office, for their police forces. While the Home Office typically did not arm their constables, that was not true of the police forces under the Colonial Office. Just in case you did not know, the .38 S&W (or as the British referred to it, the .38-200) was the British service round during WWII,and this was, I imagine, one of the main reasons for them choosing this cartidge.
 

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Well fellas, since I'm new to the Colt Forum, I thought I'd post a photo of one of my PPS's for you as requested. I am intimately familiar with these fine weapons and most vintage Colt DA revolvers. The PPS was one of Chic's favorite revolvers. He did however, modify the standard gun, to the Metropolitan Special. A 3 inch barrel variation with relieved triggerguard was his preference. This particular one is a c.1970 model, about 90% condition, among several in my collection. I authored the forward in Handgunners Guide (3rd edition from Paladin) and was one of Chic's closest pals. I hope the photo is ok, my first attempt to post one. Hope this helps. Cheers!
B.E. (Lefty) Lewis - Bell Charter Oak Custom Holsters
 

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Speaking of the .38 S&W/.38 NP, the Fiji Island Police carry Victory Model S&Ws in that caliber when on UN police missions, like in Kosovo. At home, they are unarmed, due to their low crime rate or so I was told by several of their officers.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for coming to my rescue, fellow. That is one beauty of a revolver. Personally, I think that the Police Positive Special is the best-looking handgun that I have ever seen.
Colt must have done a major overhaul of their revolvers in the late 1940's-early 1950's area. I notice that the top of the trigger guard was flattened, the front sight was serrated in the rear, and the rear sight was greatly improved as well. Gaylord mentions in his book--that was written in the late '50's--that Colt had recently made a lot of improvements in their line of revolvers. I am guessing that this was what he was referring to.

BTW,bellcharteroak, I think that you are fortunate to known Chic Gaylord personally. My condolences to you on his passing. I am fortunate enough to have a first edition of his very excellent book, given to me as a Christmas present over forty years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hey Mr. Lewis, I'm curious about something: do you happen to know what happened to Detective Ganio's .45 Special? It was a cut-down New Service in .45 Colt, that was carried with a horrendous handload. The man who carried it was an NYPD detective. It was mentioned in Handgunner's Guide and there was even a photgraph of it. I know: this is a stab in the dark at best. Thanks anyway.
 

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mr lewis, thanks for the pic post. this site has more revolver lovers than any i have seen.by the way i am also a lefty an make holsters as a hobby{hard to find good left handed leather} welcome aboard. regards dux /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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gerhard1; While Colt certainly improved the front sights with a slanted ramp shape and serrated rear,after W.W. Two(and had some special order guns with these in the 30's),the fixed sighted guns got the matte finish,wider rear notch,and serrations or "stippling" on the top strap,starting in the late 1920's.There is NO difference in the rear sight/top strap configuration between a 1933 and a 1952 Official Police I own. Of course there was a "transition period" to use up older parts,just as its possible to find a 1946-1949 or so,fixed sighted gun,with a pre war round sight,that is "original".

One great improvement that Colt DID make in the period Chic is referencing,was on the adjustable sighted target revolvers. The old separate adjustable front(elevation) and rear(windage) was replaced with the fixed ramped fronts and the Accro or Eliason rear sights,handling both. The ".357",Officers Models(first to have this sight),and original Trooper in .38 were the first to wear these after the war. Now,it was possible to carry a Colt with adjustable sights in a secure,quick draw,tight fitting holster and NOT worry about the front sight losing adjustment,or tearing hell outta the holster.(I have a 4.5" 1932 Officers Model,that came with a holster that had a large hole from the sight!) So,now,with the 4" ".357" and the Trooper,Colt carry guns could have adjustable sights.

Bud
 

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the pre war 6" has the wrong stocks/grips, they are off a python as they have gold medallions. my camera is not too good, notice the checkered hammer and latch on the prewar, also the post war{1954) 4" lacks the patent dates on top of bbl{ barely shows in photo} and has the grooved hammer. both have the wide gutter and ramped site. dux /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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The Ganio Special, so named for Det. Reno Ganio NYCPD was probably crafted by gunsmith Bob Frielich, then working on Broome Street in Manhattan. His shop was close to the old NYPD equipment bureau and he was well known to NYC area lawmen from many agencies. I understand he is retired in Florida. I've carried a similar gun, shown in the bottom left of the photo, for many, many years. As for the Ganio Special depicted in HANDGUNNERS GUIDE...who knows? That was first published in 1960. I did not know Reno Ganio, he may be still alive, if so he is probably at least in his mid 70's or older. My .45 LC Special has an engraved Chic Gaylord New York Holsters logo on one side of the frame and the Bell Charter Oak Holster logo on the other side. It sports a set of stag grips which were a gift from Chic. It has all the same features of the Ganio Special, except my model has a bobbed hammer.
Lefty Lewis
bellcharteroakholsters.com
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Reno died in a motorcyle accident in FL, sometime in the late 90s. He was one of my dad's childhood friends. Reno showed me his arsnal back in the 70's when my dad and I visited him in FL. I recall that Reno showed me a lot of guns and a book that had his "one of a kind" handgun. I'm not much of a gun guy be I think it was a snub nose 45. At that time he was an intercostal waterway officer. Hope this helps.
 

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About 1980 Reno was a patrolman with North Palm Beach FL PD.We worked patrol,and were shooting buddies early 80s.He did do boat patrol in NPB for a while.He retired and went to work for PBSO.We had lunch and when I returned about a month later I found out he was killed in a MV accident.I still miss him and its 2017.He aways outshot me and we had a lot of good times and I still owe him lunch.He was a mans man! and he aways treated people with respect.But I would not cross him.Ill be seeing you Reno. Robert Essig in PA. (There is a story that caused the need for the 45 ganio spec.)
 
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