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Discussion Starter #1
I recently was fortunate enough to buy a '67 4" blued Diamondback .38 special, and a '81 4" blued Python. Both are in great condition (though the Diamondback did need to be timed/timing hand(?) replaced). The Diamondback has a pretty nice trigger and fits my small hands better than the Python, but the Python's action is outstanding!

Because the the Diamondback feels better in my hand, I've been toying with the idea of sending it to Colt to have them do a Python-like action job on it, and reblue it in "Royal Blue". The Diamondback's finish is about 98%, but I'm thinking the higher polished Royal Blue would really be nice.

My questions are this: Can Colt give my Diamondback an action to match my Python? Has anyone here done this? Also, has anyone here had a Diamondback refinihed in Royal Blue? Any info, and opinions would be appreciated. Thanks.


nero
 

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Colt can certainly give your Diamondback a nice trigger job and finish, however its still a Detective Special mechanism. No matter what you have them do to it, it will never be the quality of a Python. If you want a 22 in a Python quality mechanism, you need to get an Officer Model Match.
 

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As for the bluing, Colt can certainly do a Python-class blue job, BUT this will reduce the value of your gun, since yours still has 98% of it's original finish, and re-blues almost always lower value.

The Diamondback can be tuned to very near Python standards, but due to the smaller action won't have exactly the same feel.

Colt can do a very nice action tuning for you through the Custom Shop.

Among other great Colt action tuners Reeves Jungkind used to do action jobs on the "D" framed revolvers that were out of this world.
Unfortunately, he's probably retired now, and in any case stopped doing anything but Pythons some years ago.

Basically, the same steps taken to tune the Python are used on the "D" frames like the Diamondback. The "D" action is more or less a downsized near-copy of the larger Colt's.

One of the more interesting projects I was involved in was converting a Diamondback into a true "miniature Python".

A Police Chief in a town near where I worked wanted to outfit his young son with complete cop uniform and equipment.

I helped out on the .22 Diamondback conversion.

Basically, the Diamondback's hammer spur was cut off and a ground down and re-sized Python hammer spur was welded on.

The trigger guard was reshaped to a more Python-looking rounded shape, I tuned the action, and it was given a high-level Python blue job.

A new set of miniature exact copies of a set of Second type Colt target grips were made up.

I also built a miniature version of his dad's Border Patrol-style holster and belt.

The son attended some meetings with his dad and was a huge hit with an exact duplicate of his dad's uniform, leather and gun.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies/info.

I've ordered some rosewood grips from Badger Custom grips for the Python. I think that they will make the Python fit my hand better.

As for the Diamondback, I haven't decided whether to have it reblued in Royal Blue or not, but I am going to send it to Colt in about a month to have them do action work on it.

nero
 

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Jungkind(or someone) must have done a job on my 1958 Police Positive Special in 32 S&W Long/Colt New police then, because that little gem has the smoothest, best action that I have ever seen on a Colt. And I have a Python. BTW, are the v-springs of the Pythons hard to replace?
 

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The Python springs aren't particularly hard to replace, as long as you know the procedure.

There are several methods, but one of the easiest is to use a pair of SMOOTH jaw needle nose pliers to gently compress the two legs until you can unhook the top leg from the hammer, then slide the spring out.

Reverse to replace the spring.

Wrap friction tape around the jaws of the pliers if you don't have smooth jaw.
Regular grooved or checkered jaw pliers will scratch or nick the spring, and this will cause it to break in use.
 

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I seem to recall that Cylinder & Slide in Nebraska supposedly offers two grades of action jobs on the D-frames including the Master Action Job. Has anyone ever had this done on the D-frame? I know recently there was a writeup in a gun magazine on their Master Action Job on a Python but am curious, too, how it would turn out on a Diamondback. Has anyone had any experience with their action jobs in general and how they turn out?
 

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Thanks dfariswheel. My Python has a double action trigger pull that is incredibly light. The problem is that it is also very unreliable in setting off primers. The trigger pull is so light that I rather strongly suspect that someone either replaced the mainspring with one that was lighter or somehow made the original one lighter, if you get my drift. What do you think? I know it's hard to give an exact answer without seeing the Python, but give it your best guess, please. Thanks.
 

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The "usual" in these cases, is a gun that fires reliably in single action, but has ignition failures in double action.

This is due to the Colt having a longer hammer travel in single action than in double action.
The shorter double action hammer stroke just doesn't have the energy to fire the primer.

The "usual" cause of this is someone altering the mainspring to get a lighter trigger pull.

The way the Colt spring is "tuned" is by inserting a piece of drill rod or a punch between the two legs of the "vee" spring and cocking the gun.

This puts a slight bend in the spring, and gives a lighter pull.

Unfortunately, many people know this, BUT they don't have the experience or the trigger pull gage to allow them to properly do this without bending TOO much, which causes the misfire problem.
They usually use TOO big a diameter punch and the spring is bent too much.

My suggestion: If you have access to a Colt-qualified pistolsmith, he may be able to re-tension the spring.

If you don't have a good 'smith, replace the spring.
 
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