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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The Pocket Positive must be the least popular model in the line-up of 20th Century Colt double-action revolvers. A goodly number were made but they are not often encountered. I never see a thread featuring them here on the Forum.

Do any Forum members have Pocket Positive revolvers that they would feature in a photograph for us to see?

Does anyone have any Pocket Positive lore to share?

How does the Forum feel about Pocket Positive as a collectible?

I'd like to acquire an example or two, just for fun.
 

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I think you are right about the Pocket Positive and the other small frame revolvers in this series. They are right about where the New Navy Model and later New Army and Navy models were five years ago... very little interest. I think with the rising prices of all things Colt, these little guns will become very collectible in the years ahead. Just like the DA Army and Navy guns that used to be offered for $100 to $200 and are now actually selling in the 4 digit figure ranges, the little pockets will be among the next collectibles. What they need is someone to start writing about them in the collector magazines and then for a knowledgible collector to write a comprehensive book on them. Then watch the change in their status... Now is the time to discover their different variations and acquire them... My opinion... :) Bob
 

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Any Pocket Positive in excellent condition is already gaining value into the $400 range and beyond, probably because so many are found in poor condition. A 2-inch (a rare barrel length) recently sold for near $700. The long barrels are also relatively rare and will bring more than the common 2.5-inch. I love the little things, and hope to get a few more before the rest of the Colt world catches on.
 

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I'm with you guys. If someone has one for sale in decent shape, I'll snap it up. I need some new blood in the stable, anyway. My newest Colt (New Army) turns 100 next year.

Rob
 

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Here is one I got several years ago. What intrigued me was the "36" stamped on the butt. Was this a badge number? Precinct number? Or what? When I cleaned it, years of powder and lead kept coming out on the patches. For a pocket gun, this one had been fired a lot !

Got curious and sent for a Colt letter. It was shipped to the G.F. Herold Co., New York, New York, in a batch of nine Pocket Positives.

Next I wrote the New York Public Library. They sent me information that the George F. Herold Company was a police equipment company located at 7 Centre St. and 1 Centre Market Place, next door to NYC police HQ, in the 1920's and 30's. Mr. Herold was a retired policeman who ran the shop. After his death, his widow carried on the business. "All the rookie policemen bought their supplies from Mrs. Herold, whom they called 'Mother'". (From 1924 obituary)

I also contacted R.M. Vivas, who has an extensive listing of NYPD serials, but he had no Pocket Positives. We are guessing this gun was possibly an issued back up piece for a Detective or higher grade officer. Needs more research...

Anyway, all the old ones have a story to tell /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif





 

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so where do these neat little pistols fall in terms of years and in terms of size? it looks like they have a REAL 'round butt' instead of the slightly 'misshappened' butt that most colt round butts have...

are they available in .38 SPECIAL or only .38 SW or .32? i really dont understand all of the different .38s. .38 colt, new police, special, s&w. id like one in the most powerful cartridge possible if i find one...

david
 

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Dave; the Pocket Positive,and its predecesor,the New Pocket model,were only chambered in .32s. Originally,the old outside lubed .32 Colt rounds were used. These are NOT interchangable with the later and better .32 S&W Long round(that Colt called .32 New Police; most Pocket Positives were in this later round.

The Pocket Positive had a frame unique to it,as compared to other smaller framed Colt DAs,such as the Police Positives. Besides the much smaller rounded butt and stocks making tit tough too shoot,especially with the longer bbls. (such as the 6",which seems like an "oxymoron" for a "pocket gun"!), if I recall correctly,it even has a slightly smaller diameter cylinder than other small frame Colts; haven't worked on one for about 15 years.

While a cute little gun,you can find far more powerful modern "small" D.A. Colts. If you are hankering for a .32,try and find a .32 Colt Courier made in 1954-55(damm few!). Alloy frame and cylinder,small grips and 3" bbl. Very light,small, and accurate!

Bud
 

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I agree that the Pocket Positive gets little respect. I have a 2 1/2" version that doesn't look anywhere near as good as the 2 shown in this thread! It is a great compliment to my stable of Police Positives and a great shooter!
 

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wow. if they had kept it up to date, it could have done extra duty combatting the smith m36 along with the DS...

boy, what Colt's SHOULD have done...

david
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Those little 2 1/2-inch Pocket Positive revolvers sure are cute. I got a transition New Pocket/Pocket Positive earlier this year at the Dallas Market Hall gun show. I'd like to add a Pocket Positive with the short barrel to the collection.

Seems like one would see more of these little revolvers considering the numbers produced.

I agree with Lonewolf about a Pocket Positive with a 6-inch barrel. That'd be a strange combination. He's also right about the shooting qualities of the Pocket Positive which is difficult to grasp because of it's small grip frame.

Thanks to Tommix and Bushwacker for the nice photos. It's nice to see the revolvers in their boxes too.
 

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I have my little pocket positive in 32 S&W long. The insides are cherry but alas, the outside has some surface pitting. Serial is 108239. It is my carry conceal gun in a shoulder holster I made to fit under my arm.

It shoots great up to 10 yds, it only has a 2 1/2 inch barrel.

I have a box of Federal 98 grain lead bullets and have shot about 25. I have the re loading data in the 48th edition of Lymans loading handbook.
Of course with an old gun, I must be careful ,but I am sure I can boost it a bit higher than the federal load. I think I can get the dies from LEE.

Any comments?????
 

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Pocket Positive

The Pocket Positive is a great little revolver and is often overlooked as previously mentioned. I have been collecting these for quite some time and have about thirty. I have attached a couple of photo's showing some of them. I am still looking for a 6" nickel Pocket Positive in case one of the Forum members might have one that they would sell.



Please note that only the three guns on the left are Pocket Positives.
 

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Getting more poop out of a 32

Factory loaded ammo is loaded way down due to some old (and newer) top break revolvers chambered in this round. Post WW1 firearms (including Colt revolvers) did utilize updated steel tempering technology to produce stronger guns. The best one could do is buy a chronograph and fire factory and handloaded ammo to see what combination of powder and bullet gives best performance. The 32 pocket positive is a 32 cal cylinder gun that was never made for a larger round (38.). Police positives, detective specials, cobras and Police positive specials were sometimes chambered in the smaller 32 round and leave a thicker cylinder to work with.

If you think the 32 S&W long is weak, try firing the 32 S&W (short) at metal pistol plates. Sometimes the plate just turns instead of knocking over. We also shoot at a heavy metal swinging plate at 25 yards. With the 32 S&W long, I know I hit the plate when I hear the "ting" as the swing is so slight. It is really on par with the 22 Long Rifle.
 

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Wonderful group of double actions.....seems like I remember someone writing in an early colt collectors magazine around 1983 or so that they thought the smaller framed colt double actions had been overlooked as far as collectibility.....everyone was chasing the single actions and 1911's and Supers at the time. The New Services and the other double actions were going begging when you think about the pricing of them back then.
 

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Wow, I'm glad this great thread resurfaced! Fantastic guns. The collections above are breathtaking.
Ha! It looks like you resurfaced it. Born in 2006, revived in 2008, and now here again in 2010, courtesy of TWAITS. :D By 2012 it might make it to four pages in length!

Actually I was looking at this thread about a month ago when I was trying to decide whether to buy a Pocket Positive at a local shop. Nifty little guns, and among the many "I want" Colts on my wish list.
 

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"Proto-Pocket Positive"

I showed this a little over a month ago when I got it, but maybe this thread warrants a reintroduction. It is actually a "proto-pocket positive" since it predates the introduction of the "positive" safety feature. That beats "pocket negative" as a shorthand term.

New Pocket No. 9877, probably shipped 1897.



The earlier guns in this thread really make my heart beat faster.
 

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Ha! It looks like you resurfaced it. Born in 2006, revived in 2008, and now here again in 2010, courtesy of TWAITS. :D By 2012 it might make it to four pages in length!

Actually I was looking at this thread about a month ago when I was trying to decide whether to buy a Pocket Positive at a local shop. Nifty little guns, and among the many "I want" Colts on my wish list.
Actually I resurfaced it by referencing it in whitecoyote's recent post about his Pocket Positive acquisition. :)

http://www.coltforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=29355 The Circle Is Unbroken :cool:
 
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