Colt Forum banner

1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys I was looking for some thoughts on a recent buy... Can anyone give me an idea of what a custom "Smython" is worth? This conversion was done by Bob Cogan. He also refinished it in his brushed stainless chrome.

I have seen them go on the low end for $900 and up to $2500... thats a pretty LARGE price range and since they rarely come up, its very hard to determine what something like this maybe worth. (Ill keep what I paid to myself).

In the days leading up to my buy, I read a ton about them, who the top smiths were that would attempt the conversions, and why they were made. I also learned a lot about why they are not around these days... Here is the result of my findings and a lot of info for anyone who is half curious. (Please feel free to correct me or add to this if you feel there is relevant information missing from my post)

The Colt/Smith Revolver: Smython/Smolt
The Smythong/Solt was made by taking a Colt Python barrel and putting it on a S&W Frame.... used typically for PPC or Bullseye competition. When you consider that the barrel threads on the 2 companies revolver were completely different it would take a machining genius or extremely qualified smith to complete this conversion/make the switch the right way.

With these two pieces one or the other has a barrel thread pitch that is right hand and the other is left hand. In other words the threads have to be turned off the barrel and completely rethreaded to match the one in the frame. Very few gunsmiths would attempt such a conversion (or should I say, do them correctly). Sadowski, 300 Custom, and Cogan have made some real showpieces over the years and were thought of as tops on the list of folks doing that kind of work.

The Smolts/Smythons do pre-date the 1970's by a long shot. They were first made for NRA Conventional Bullseye when revolvers were the centerfire firearm of choice. Their existence came about because the S&W action was easier to modify (and maintain) and the Colt barrel was consistently more accurate with the standard 148 gn. wadcutter bullet. IIRC, the rate of twist and the direction of twist made the Colt barrel much more desirable. At this time the Colt barrels were not from the Python but heavy round barrels.The Colt action was more complex (hand fit) and there were few pistol smiths that could handle the Colt action. The Colt action was not known for it's longevity under constant competition useage either.

The Smolt pistol was used by Harry Reeves of the Detroit Police Department to win several National Championships. He won a total of six National Championships from 1946 to 1954. He was the first person to break the score of 2600 out of a possible 2700. IIRC he was the first person to break 2650 also. At that time these feats were legendary.

Another thing that was done (on the Smolts) was the cylinder of the S&W was shortened so that a flush wadcutter round would fit the cylinder but not a conventional round with a protruding bullet like a RN. The Colt barrel was set back to the shortened S&W cylinder. The spur of the S&W hammer was cut off and welded on the left side of the hammer at an angle. Since the pistol was fired single action only the shooter could easily reach the modified spur and cock the hammer without a change in grip. These hammers were known as cock-eyed hammers (which mine doesnt have).

S&W also made a single action only K-38 (Model 14) aimed at the NRA Conventional Bullseye crowd.
The PPC guys had kept the Smolt alive as the Smolt (revolver) had nearly disappeared in Bullseye by 1975 or so.

This craze resulted in S&W making the L-frame as a direct result of this combo....h

I would love to hear feedback on this buy etc...








































Some with my Wood Grips...






















I have to say, I am not a revolver shooter but, the revolver shot very nicely. I typically shoot a Baer 1911, CZ Shadow, or S&W 52-2 along with a slew of others. Here is my best freehand DA (I do not shoot SA) 6 shot group at 15 yards. I was shooting hand load wadcutters and was very happy at how the firearm performed!


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Lol, I was thinking that... I actually didnt want Smith Grips on it. Nill were in the plans until I got those wood grips as a gift. Figure they look fine and were no cost to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,026 Posts
cundiff, thanks for an interesting and informative post.

Also, welcome to Coltfourm.com. I can see that you are going to be a great new addition to our online community.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
cundiff, thanks for an interesting and informative post.

Also, welcome to Smith-Wessonfourm.com. I can see that you are going to be a great new addition to our online community.
Ah, come on... this is Colt related. I am assuming you are busting my balls. I can delete the thead if this is to much "Smith" for you all. Didnt mean to cause an issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,026 Posts
Sorry, cundiff5535, I forgot which forum I was on, after seeing your Smolt. Just a mistake, that's all.

How does the Smolt shoot?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
454 Posts
Great looking (and performing, 'twould seem) revolver, Bobby. Thanks for posting the pix.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
224 Posts
You have a gun with two different parents. Unless one has the same need as the one who did the job, the "bastard" gun has no real value at all. Aside form the fact that there probably are not many of them done, that doesn't make it "rare" and therefore raise the price. The value is purely in the mind of the buyer. Don't misunderstand, I am not ridiculing your purchase or whatever you paid for it. I am simply relating my take on your question.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
521 Posts
That is a beautiful piece of machinery. I've always liked the Smython conversion. I also think the Couger conversion is pretty interesting. Congrats.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
You have a gun with two different parents. Unless one has the same need as the one who did the job, the "bastard" gun has no real value at all. Aside form the fact that there probably are not many of them done, that doesn't make it "rare" and therefore raise the price. The value is purely in the mind of the buyer. Don't misunderstand, I am not ridiculing your purchase or whatever you paid for it. I am simply relating my take on your question.
Respectfully disagree... Any custom firearm with paper work that ties it to a well know gunsmith has value... since Cogan did it, it's probably worth more than I originally thought. With that's said, worth is not a major issue at this point, especially since I don't plan on selling it. I know I asked in the post but, not really the answer I am looking for. As stated I have seen them sell anywhere from 900-2000... It doesn't really matter anyway. Just sharing pictures of what I think isa cool piece:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,467 Posts
One is on my list eventually as a novelty more than a collector. I can tell you that I consdier them to be very interesting and I probably would have paid in the 1500 range for the one you have, it is a very nice example. Congrats on a nice revolver purchase and a unique piece of competition history
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
One is on my list eventually as a novelty more than a collector. I can tell you that I consdier them to be very interesting and I probably would have paid in the 1500 range for the one you have, it is a very nice example. Congrats on a nice revolver purchase and a unique piece of competition history
Thanks Rob, I agree this isnt a real "collectors" piece such as a vintage Python (I have more than enough of those). The thing is, I do not shoot those. This was meant to be shot a lot... and it shoots well!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,156 Posts
If smith would of made some of these..we would all be collecting smiths...lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,667 Posts
Since I own a few Pythons and more than a few Smiths I gotta say I like it. Yours looks very nice and would be a fun gun to own.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,752 Posts
Here's some more including the Ruger "Cougar" conversion:

SMOLT
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,141 Posts
That's a beautiful revolver and an example of some outstanding, precision gunsmithing. I was wondering how the forward cylinder lock up was accomplished and then saw the ball detent on the crane. Your target sure proves that the gun can shoot !
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Yes, I wondered the same the first time I saw them. I will say, a lot of conversions were done poorly and the ball was not nearly correct on it.

Thanks for the kind words on the target! I have been lucky enough to shoot with some of the best old school revolver shooters around and even more lucky to learn from them! I just wish I was as good as them. It amazes me that 70-75 year old men can still hold one hole when we are shooting 15 yards and in.
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
Top