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Likely not.

A military finish was somewhat dull, when compared to a commercial finish.

That said - Colt used up everything in the parts bin, so...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The serial number is in range but a stamp is not visible, only a small parts of the dates are visible, on the U.S. marks they were deeper.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The gun I have has a 5 1/2" barrel with DCF and P stamp but no visible US stamp on frame. 1882 S/N date. The patient dates almost all gone just slightly visible in places and faint. Barrel S/N does not match frame.
 

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The barrel serial number will only be the last 4 digits of the full number. Remodeled "Artillery" models have 5 1/2" barrels and serial numbers rarely match. Some remodels had only the barrel replaced. Is your frame stamped DFC above the serial number? Since the patent dates are weak the US could have been scrubbed. Does the front sight look original or has the barrel been "shop" cut and a different sight installed? Really need good photos of everything to make an accurate assessment; too many variables to cover with words. Regards.
 

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The screws appear to sit in slightly dished holes, so it appears the frame was buffed. Which could explain the weak patent dates and absent "U.S." markings, provided this was an Artillery Model. But I suspect this was not an Artillery Model due to matching serial numbers except the barrel. This means that your Colt is likely one of two options: A Cavalry Model with buffed off "U.S." markings and a replacement 5 1/2" barrel shortened from 7 1/2" and created during the Arsenal reconfiguration. Many such barrels were available well after the turn of the century and many so called Artillery Models were created from such parts located in several barrels discovered at the Colt factory in the '60's or 70's. The other most likely option is you have a Civilian model utilizing a part on hand at the time of manufacture, or later. If at the time of manufacture, this would be unlikely as barrels on hand for military production would have been 7 1/2" only in 1882 created for Cavalry Model revolvers. What is the serial number inside the grip channel? Grips appear unsersize and likely have been sanded and refinished, plus some shrinkage, if not replaced. Removal of grips could reveal pins inside or not, and this could reveal if original grips were the hard rubber variety, suggesting Civilian production.

In this case, a Colt factory letter could prove VERY useful.
 

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Looks like a commercial gun (caliber on trigger guard and no DFC on frame) that has had a U.S. Artillery barrel put on it. Ejector rod head replaced or altered. Hope this helps a little.
 

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Yes, good eye. Caliber markings on the trigger guard further support Civilian production with a replacement Artillery model barrel. Also, if military, there would be a bullseye ejector rod head and this is absent.
 

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I thought I quoted Post #12, above. I hit "quote" and nothing happened. I have to say I like the old forum format much better!
 

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Looks like a commercial gun (caliber on trigger guard and no DFC on frame) that has had a U.S. Artillery barrel put on it. Ejector rod head replaced or altered. Hope this helps a little.
According to John Kopec , Ordinance Department recall was in1893 and barrels we're altered during 1895 . At this point I would think that information from Colt archives would be a necessity to solve this mystery . The fact that the frame sn# dates to 1882 doesn't mean that's when it was sold . In my opinion the stocks are not original to this gun . A Colt letter would let you know in what configuration this SAA was created as well as other pertinent information . $ 100.00 well spent in mho .
Good luck, Kal
 

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For decades, spares for the SAA were common at all of the gun shows and through all of the parts houses.

Creating one was a simple matter, and didn't have to be done by Colt - it could and was accomplished by pretty much anyone with a desire to either create one from parts or re-caliber one to a chambering of their preference.

That's why 'provenance' is so very important in the SAA field, and why Graham, Kopec and Moore all wrote books, and have a cottage industry of authentication.
 
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