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I second that being a "keeper"!!! Mine is still in 99% after being NIB when I bought it around 1991. Served my daughter well as her apartment protector while in Med School in Boston.

Mine was built in 1970,or 71; too late to check in my catalogs,as its bedtime,but were .22 Cobras bult as early as 1960???,as this one was advertised as. Pretty low price,but the smaller framed Colts,just don't seem to rise in value as the larger framed ones such as the N.S. Even the rare Courier is still "moderately priced",IMO.

Bud
 

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From what I have been able to piece together, there are two production periods for the Cobra 22. First one was between 1963 and 1967 and the second period was between 1971 and 1973. The second period had the shrouded ejector rods.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
First one was between 1963 and 1967 and the second period was between 1971 and 1973. The second period had the shrouded ejector rods.

[/ QUOTE ]

22-rimfire, I'm going to have to respectfully disagree with you on this.

I have an unshrouded Cobra 22 3" made in 1972. Beginning in 1973, the Cobra was shrouded. As a side note, I believe all 1972 and before 22 Cobra's were made in 3".
 

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I have no problem with someone disagreeing with me. Heck, that is from notes I made more than 5-years ago. Sorry if the production ranges sounded like they were set in stone or absolutes.

When Colt changed from unshrouded to shrounded ejector rods, that is when the so called second series bagan on the Colt Cobra. The 1973 Gun Digest (copyright 1972) mentioned that Colt was upgrading some of their line which is when the D-frame revolvers started appearing with the shrouded ejector rod housing below the barrel. Blue Book says that occurred in 1973. The 1973 catalog lists a 22 Cobra and the picture shows a shouded ejector rod. The 1974 catalog does not list a 22 version of the Cobra. All of the 22 Cobra's that I am aware of were 3-inch models just like the Courier. There does not appear to be a 22 version prior to approximately 1963 even though the Cobra was introduced in 1951.
 

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I was wrong about my .22 Cobra 3",being made in 70 or 41. It is serial #C688xx,which puts it late 72,as 73 began with C68951. It is unshrouded,but of course with the short grip frame.

I think a shrouded .22 Cobra would be a real rarity!

Bud
 

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Lonewolf: I do believe you are right as Colt may have only made the shrouded 22 Cobras for one year. The Cobra revolver is a tough one to research. The problem goes with the 60's catalogs where they show up and it is difficult to decifer which year the catalog was made in many cases. Of course, we all know that Colt did not necessarily adhere to only what was cataloged. They are cool guns and I have only seen one shrouded one in person at a show that I can recall and it was for $300 in 1989. I have two 22 Cobras. I need to take a peak at them again. Haven't even handled one of them in several years.
 

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Talk about dumb luck. Were out on business today, and stopped at one of our regular gun stops. They had just took in a 22 Cal. 3" barrel blued Cobra Serial# B817XX. We think DOB about 1970-1971. It is in amazing condition 98% plus, with no turn ring that we can see. Has a couple of small drawer dings, otherwise great, no box. Do any of you know approx. how many were made in each barrel length? Did they make it in nickel? Thanks much.
 

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FWIW - BB says .22 LR was available only in 3"barrel. Nickel was available, add 15%. B817xx = 1971. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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For what its worth, I just got my three inch Cobra .22 out and the ser# 101XXXLW. According to Wilson's Colt's Dates of Manufacture that puts it in around 1960-61 ? It also has a full length grip.......Henri
 

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Thanks A1A. I am still trying to find out how many Cobra's were made in each configuration? I somehow got into this snake bitten thing by accident. We have picked up a variety of snakes including, {1} Ultimate stainless 6" 45 cal. Anaconda, {2} Blued & stainless 2-1/2" Pythons, (3) NIB nickel Viper, (4) 38 cal. 2-1/2" blued Diamondback, (5) Blued 3" 22 cal. Cobra. I don't know what others we need to complete the group, but a Boa is probably out of the question.
 

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I decided to take a look at my catalogs and Gun Digests (GD) relative to the Cobra Model. I looked at a fairly complete group of Gun Digests starting at 1951 all the way through to the time the Cobra was discontinued. The same approach was used for the catalogs. I can't say that I have every catalog between 1951 and 1990, but I do have most of them. My un-edited findings are summarized below.

Gun Digests: Cobra's first listed in 1953 GD which makes it 1952 information. Revolver listed consistantly through 1977 GD. Don't have every year after 1977. But the Cobra was not listed in the 1981 or 1983 GD. The Blue Book lists that the Second issue was discontinued in 1981. 22 caliber Cobras are only specifically listed in the 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1973, and 1974 Gun Digests. There is a listing that the 22 is in 3-inch barrel only in 1971 and 1972 GD. (The 22 has always been only offered in a 3-inch barrel.)

Colt Catalogs: Cobra first cataloged in 9/51 catalog (brochure). It was listed continuously in catalogs or other Colt literature (price lists, parts catalogs and so forth) through the 1978 catalog (not 1981 reported by the Blue Book).

The 22 RF Cobra was only specifically identified in 1964 (A80-64), the interpreted 1964 year for the CP100 (Brown cover with Python) catalog/brochure, 1972 and 1973 Catalogs. A 22 barrel and other parts were listed as available in the 1960 (A79-5), 1961 (A79-6-61) parts catalogs. It was not included in the 1962 Parts catalog or again until 1972 (PPL-1-12/72) parts catalog.

Comment: This is pretty dis-jointed information to say the least to draw strong conclusions from. I would interpret that there were "some" 22 Cobra's manufactured in the early 1960's (1960-1961)or perhaps 1959 to get it in the 1960 parts catalog. Then it was manufactured 1964 and 1966, and again in 1969 through 1973. The Gun Digests reference seems to carry the 3" barrel information between the years where it was not specifically cataloged (i.e. 1967 through 1968). In no reference is the 22 Cobra referenced after 1973 (1974 Gun Digest). Hence, it appears that production was off and on, but primarily between the years of 1964 and 1973 with the possibility of some limited manufacture around 1960-1961.

Hope you find this interesting as this took a while to put together.
 

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Talk about doing your homework! I bought a 22 Cobra two days ago, and wondered about how many were made, and in what years. Your research is about as thorough a one could hope for. Colt did start, quit, and start again fairly often in their manufacturing schedules. I am printing, and saving your post. Thanks a bunch!
 

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I disagree siightly with 22-rimfire. I have a fairly complete Colt catalog collection from the early 1900s to present. I spent some time going through the late 1950s catalogs forward to see what was shown about the .22 Cobra.

The first mention I found of the .22 Cobra was in a catalog with no form number and the only reference to a date being on the holster page, where it states "Prices effective September 1, 1960." If one were to look at the Cobra text listing under the chambering column, one would logically assume there was no .22 chambering because that column shows only the .32 and .38 chamberings. However, looking at the barrel length column shows ".22 L.R. 3"" That exact same listing style is in the Form A79-5 catalog that appears identical to the previous catalog and that has the same "Prices effective" date. However, the accompanying September 1, 1960 price list does NOT list the .22 Cobra.

The Form A79-5-361 catalog is dated March 1961 and has the identical listing as the earlier catalogs. As a point of interest, none of the catalogs of any year ever picture a Cobra with anything but a 2-inch barrel.

The Form A79-6-62 catalog has the same style of listing. The Form C-101-1 May 1, 1962 parts catalog does not list any .22 Cobra parts.

Finally, the 1963 Form A79-5-63 catalog lists ".22 L.R." in the chambering column, as well as in the barrel length column as in earlier catalogs. The only 1963 price list I have is a September 16, 1963 Police Price List, which lists the .22 Cobra.

All I have for 1964 is a Dealer Catalog, A80-64, which lists the .22 Cobra. The DPL-100 Dealer Price List dated April 1, 1964 lists the .22 Cobra.

In 1965, again I only have a police catalog, which lists the .22 Cobra.

The undated CP100 catalog with the burgandy cover and drawing of a Diamondback with the muzzle facing right, which I believe to be also a 1965, lists the .22 Cobra.

There is another undated CP100 catalog with a brown cover and a picture of a Diamondback with the muzzle facing left, which I believe to be 1966. It has a Police Price List dated March 9, 1966 with it. Both list the .22 Cobra.

In the next CP100 catalog, which I believe to be 1967, does NOT list the .22 Cobra. The CP101 Rev. 7-67 and the CCC8/69 Rev. 1 do NOT list the .22 Cobra.

The 1969 Parts List PPL69 lists the .22 cylinder and firing pin, but not a .22 barrel.

However, the 1969 Parts List PL69-7 (July 1969?) shows the .22 cylinder, firing pin AND barrel.

The 1970, 1971 and 1972 catalogs do not list the .22 Cobra.

The fancy OCC-8-72 catalog (1973?) mentions the .22 3-inch Cobra, but does not picture it. The pictured .38 Cobra 2-inch is UNSHROUDED while the Detective Special shown is shrouded.

The nearly identical OCC2-73 (also 1973?) mentions the .22 Cobra but does not picture it. The .38 Cobra pictured has a SHROUDED barrel.

The Part No. 91682 1/74 catalog does not mention the .22 Cobra, nor does any catalog that followed.

I am skeptical that the .22 Cobra was actually available again in 1973. I am quite sure if it were, that the .22 never had the shrouded barrel. Much of the line was remodeled in 1972-1973 (shrouded barrels, etc.) and I think a .22 Cobra may have been planned again, but never built, much like the .22 Python catalog listing a few years later that never was produced. It could even be a simple mistake that the copy writer took from an earlier catalog that still listed the .22 Cobra without realizing the .22 had been discontinued.

Catalogs are undoubtedly more reliable than Gun Digests and Shooters Bibles, which by their nature are always a year behind, but not infallible. For instance, I have an Officers Model Match chambered in .22WMR that was shipped in late 1959, but which chambering was not cataloged until 1961.

My .22 Cobra 1096XX-LW shipped November 16, 1964 as a single gun shipment to Herb Glass of Bullville, New York. I wonder who he was? Guns are usually shipped to distributors rather that individuals. Perhaps he was a peace officer. I bought the gun in Des Moines, Iowa, (from an Iowa dealer) in the early 1980s, so it somehow made its way to the Midwest in about 20 years. It is also interesting to note that the charts would place my .22 Cobra in early 1961, but it did not ship until late 1964. That happens a lot. Whether the gun was made in 1961 and not shipped until 1964, or whether the gun was not made until 1964 cannot be determined.

Colt still needs a .22 revolver, and a .22 pistol. I wonder if it ever will have them again?
 

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Judge; Herb Glass was a very well known collector/dealer in the time period that your Cobra was shipped to him. He advertised in some of the national mags,and wrote some articles.

Bud
 

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LW, thank you for the information on Herb Glass. I thought the name sounded familiar, and your information jogged my weak memory. Now my .22 Cobra has (valuable?) provenance!

I also apologize for missing the fact that you have a .22 Cobra in the "C" series that was probably made in 1972. That blows my theory about them not being made in that early 1970s time frame. However, it supports my contention that, if made, they would not have a shrouded barrel.

I therefore feel the .22 Cobra was made from late 1960/early 1961 through 1966, and then again in 1972 through 1973. That gives three possible "variations." Those "LW" suffix guns made from 1961 through 1966 with the long frame, perhaps some "LW" suffix guns made in 1966 with the short frame that began that year, and then some "C" prefix guns made in 1972/1973, with the short frame of course. I suspect the "LW" suffix guns with the short frame, IF any, are the rarest. The "C" series might be next rarest. I still doubt any would have had the shrouded barrel.

That is what is great about a forum like this. Everyone can bring a piece of knowledge to the table and we can all learn from it.
 
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