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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We discussed this a while back on another thread, and it was never really clarified.

Point in fact: Pythons were all hand made at the Custom Shop in the earlier years. (Maybe the new ones are also, but I don't know.)

Second point in fact: Diamondbacks ARE NOT baby Pythons.

First question: What was the difference in the manufacturing process which would make the Python a better quality pistol over the Diamondback?

Second question: Why would a Python be advertised as "reworked at custom shop" if they all came from the custom shop to begin with. Once again, I can only imagine a Python being returned for custom shop work if it had a lot of serious use and needed a tune up, or to have the Elliason combat sights installed.
 

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I'm sure everyone's aware of it, but I thought I'd mention that the D-Back uses the hammer-mounted firing pin, where the Python never did use those. Those got left behind on the OP and original Troopers. Even my .357 has the internal firing pin. Now, I don't know how anyone would ever prove it, but it seems the internal pin would be smoother, somehow. Doesn't it? FWW, it you handle and shoot the P and the D, you'll surely feel a difference in the action. Neither's bad - just different, I guess. The D-Back's insides are like the Police Positive or even DS - no?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Mr. dfariswheel! That is excellent and intresting information. I knew about the tapered bore, but I had never heard about the mysterious "silver ball".

I've always heard that the books by R.L. Wilson are the best for Colt Firearms information and history, but I'm not sure which one would best cover the facts on "modern firearms" such as the Python and Diamondback.

I know of three books:

Colt: An American Legend
The Colt Heritage
Book of Colt Firearms

I'm sure there are more. Any suggestions on exactly which book to buy that will cover the information we are duscissing?
 

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Colt: An American Legend has all known serial number and production data in the back.
This, along with the pictures of all known Colt firearms makes it my favorite reference.
 

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The Python wasn't a Custom Shop gun until the very late 90's, starting with the Python Elite-marked guns.
Prior to this, the Python was a regular production item, NOT a Custom Shop item.

The differences between the Python and Diamondback were:

The quality of the polishing before bluing.
Many people think the Python was blued with a special bluing process, but all Colt's were blued by the same chemical process.

The Python's "secret" to that super finish was the polishing.
Only master polishers, with many years experience on "cheaper" Colt's were allowed to work on the Python.

Colt always made their own leather-covered wooden polishing wheels, and the Python went through a much more extensive amount of polishing with finer grits of media than standard Colt's. The final polish on the Python was done with media the consistence of flour.
The Diamondback had a "standard" polish job.

All "old style" Colt actions had to be totally hand fitted JUST to work properly.
The Python's action received much more hand mating and polishing of the critical working parts than any other Colt gun.
Like all other Colt's, the Diamondback was simply fitted to a "working" fit.

The Python barrel has a tapered bore.
The bore tapers toward the muzzle so the bullet is gripped tighter as it moves down the barrel.
Also, the Python was given the mysterious "Silver ball" treatment, in which a silver ball of some "secret" metal was hand pressed down the bore, leaving it with a super-smooth finish.
This was done ONLY to the Python, not the Diamondback.

In general, the entire Python was more carefully built, fitted, and inspected than the Diamondback.

As for your last question, again, the Python was a regular production item, NOT a Custom Shop model until the Elite.

There are a number of reasons why a Python would be sent in to the Custom Shop:
A re-finish, or a change of finish. ( From blue to nickel, from matte stainless to bright stainless, etc).

To receive a higher level tune to the trigger action. Colt offered enhanced target-grade action work over and beyond the "standard" Python factory quality.

Replacement of the barrel with a different length.

Engraving, custom grips, etc.

In other words, the reasons a Python might be sent in to the Custom Shop are limited only by the customer's imagination and wallet size.

To sum up:
The Python was simply a "step above" any other revolver, including any Colt revolver like the Diamondback.

The Python had extra features like the tapered bore, and the Silver ball polish.

The Python had the finest polish job of any production, and many custom pistols.

The Python action received a lavish amount of hand fitting and polishing.

There are any number of reasons a Python might be "reworked at the Custom Shop", ranging from repairing an out of time action on up.
 
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