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I picked this book up recently written in 1965 by David Brown it is a great description of all the calibers available in the SAA. His personal collection had 62 Colt SAA with all of the calibers. All of the Colts have factory letters which cost $3.00 at that time.

Jim
 

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That's pretty interesting! Did it say anything about which was the rarest, most plentiful (I'm guessing 45 Colt), or most unique?
 

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ACTUALLY, as the years have gone by it has become clear there MAY have been thirty six caliber names but there sure as heck were NOT 36 different cartridges. The late Chuck Karwan figured this all out but but for the life of me as we speak I cannot remember where he put that information.
 

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That's pretty interesting! Did it say anything about which was the rarest, most plentiful (I'm guessing 45 Colt), or most unique?
I think I read somewhere (possibly in one of Don Wilkerson's books?) that there was ONE SAA made in .30 Carbine. Maybe a GI coming home wanting a reminder or a companion for an M1?

Rio
 

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I think I read somewhere (possibly in one of Don Wilkerson's books?) that there was ONE SAA made in .30 Carbine. Maybe a GI coming home wanting a reminder or a companion for an M1?

Rio
You are correct. There was at least one SAA chambered in .30 Carbine. One is noted in Wilkerson's book on the Pre-War/Post-War SAAs. Wilkerson also brought to light the four 2nd Generation SAAs made in .41 Magnum by the Custom Shop. Brown's book is focused exclusively on the Pre-War Colt SAAs.
 

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First generation COLT SAA pistols.
22 rimfire
32rimfire
32colt
32smith&wesson
32-44
32-20
38colt
38s&w
38colt special
38smith&wesson special
38-44
357
380eley
38-40wcf
41
44smoothbore
44rinfire
44german
44russian
44smith&wesson
44winchester
45colt
45smoothbore
45auto
450boxer
450eley
455eley
476eley
and is apparent, many are duplicate cartridges.

COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY MODEL P
BY Fred Christensen
 

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First generation COLT SAA pistols.
22 rimfire
32rimfire
32colt
32smith&wesson
32-44
32-20
38colt
38s&w
38colt special
38smith&wesson special
38-44
357
380eley
38-40wcf
41
44smoothbore
44rinfire
44german
44russian
44smith&wesson
44winchester
45colt
45smoothbore
45auto
450boxer
450eley
455eley
476eley
and is apparent, many are duplicate cartridges.

COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY MODEL P
BY Fred Christensen

Well, counting the smoothbores as separate chamberings is lame as anything I've seen. Yes, they are smoothbore, but I imagine they will chamber and shoot ball ammunition of the stated caliber.
 

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I didn't see 9 mm listed in the list of calibers,about 10 yrs ago I built custom grips & tuned the actions on a matched nickel plated pair of SA's from Hawaii.They came from the owner of the Corum library & the back straps were engraved w/his cowboy shooting alias,it was PANIOLO which is Hawaiian for cowboy.These were the 1st & only ones I've seen in 9 mm.
 

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From Wil Terry's list, I count 28 different cartridges listed. Of these, at least, the .38 Colt Special and .38 S&W Special are the same round, the .44 Smoothbore and .44-40 are the same cartridge, and the .45 Smoothbore and .45 Colt would likely be the same chambering. These three combinations reduce the count to twenty-five.

I believe the SAA was also chambered for the .22 Winchester Rimfire (.22 WRF) and .44 Special, which are not listed. If these are legitimate, that brings the count to twenty-seven.

What have we overlooked?

Bob Wright
 

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As to the popularity of the .45 Colt Single Action, I read, I believe in the American Rifleman several years ago a survey of .44-40 caliber revolvers of the "Western Period". These were revolvers made by Smith & Wesson, Remington, Forehand and Wadsworth, and others of the period. The article had production numbers of each maker. The conclusion was that of all the manufacturers of .44-40 caliber revolvers, Colt made more (in .44-40) than all the others combined!

And Colt made far and away more .45 Colt than .44-40s.



Bob Wright
 

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Here's a couple I didn't see listed. .41 short colt & .41 long colt & then I found .22 short,long & long rifle.
 

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Here's a couple I didn't see listed. .41 short colt & .41 long colt & then I found .22 short,long & long rifle.
Ummm, were Colt SAAs actually chambered for the short versions of these rounds?

I reckon what I'm considering are actual chamberings of the revolver rather than the cartridges they would accommodate.

Bob Wright
 

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I believe as well that there were one or two 1st Gen guns made in .44 Colt, the heel based bullet ctg. used in the .44 Colt conversions.
 

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Huh...how interesting that the SAA could be ordered to be in .22 Short.


I guess certain Exhibition Shooters may have wanted that Cartridge.

Interesting!


I wonder what reply one would have gotten, if writing to Colt asking for a 7-1/2 inch Barrel 1878 "DA" in .22 Short?
 
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