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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently acquired a pre war, c.1930 Police Positive .38 Special. It has a brand new park finish (not my taste) the price was right...under $60.00...so I bought it. It was disassembled when I saw it...the guy had no clue how to reassemble. I had it up and running in about 10 minutes. It's out of time in double action. Single action it indexes perfectly. D.A. it is unreliable. There is end shake and side play of the cylinder when closed. The ratchet or ejector star appears to have a recess of smaller diameter than the cylinder release bolt. I tried exchanging parts from a set I had purchased from Sarco, years ago, from a similar vintage PPS. No improvement. As expected, the rollmarks are all faint from being polished or beadblasted, but the bore and cylinder is excellent. Initially, I bought it for a bench dummy for molding holsters, to replace a much better grade/condition model I have been using. As I said...the price was absurdly low. But this revolver seems to be serviceable as a shooter if repaired, although not a collectable due to the refinish. I realize revolver parts generally, are not "drop in" like most autos. But I'm wondering if there is a technique to get the old girl up on her feet again. Any suggestions?
 

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The Searcher
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Recognize you as a holster maker from another forum. Originally from "upstate" NY myself. Your best bet by far is to obtain a copy of "The Colt Double Action Revolvers, A Shop Manual, Vol." I by Jerry Kuhnhausen (if that is his real name, a forum "joke") from Brownells, Midway or book supplier of your choice. There are certainly those on the forum who can answer specifics or fill in any blanks, but the book is excellent. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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Well I just received one if your Half-Breed Holsters for my Cobra less than a month ago so I definately recognized the name. I've been very pleased with it and intend to purchase a couple more holsters from your company in the future. I would also recommend your holsters to anyone looking right now.

I have the Kuhnhausen book that A1A mentioned and it is the bible for these guns. I assume that you didn't want to spend the money to have this handgun fixed by a gunsmith well versed in older Colts?

Dave
 

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The Searcher
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[ QUOTE ]
I have the Kuhnhausen book that A1A mentioned and it is the bible for these guns. I assume that you didn't want to spend the money to have this handgun fixed by a gunsmith well versed in older Colts?

Dave

[/ QUOTE ]

Good point for comment, Dave. What needs to be done may well require a truly qualified gunsmith in the end, but as you know, the Kuhnhausen book allows you to at least analyze and discuss your (Colt) problems better and appreciate the skills required if that becomes the case. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for you kind remarks and helpful comments. I am extremely familiar with Colt (and S&W) pre war revolvers. I've disassembled and reassembled them for over 35 years. I'm also probably one of the "Last Of The Mohicans" still making custom holsters for them and most other pre war wheelguns. Since my gunsmith retired, I've had rather disappointing results from a few "younger guys" who honestly don't understand them. It's not the money you see...that's not the point at all. I bought it believing it to be a parts gun, whose owner described it as unrepairable. /forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif When it arrived disassembled, I was astonished to find only one sideplate screw missing, which I've replaced. The hand and cylinder stop are in time. I think the problem is the star or ejector. I switched the crane, exjector rod and cylinder assembly and it locks up tight as a bank vault. It was as loose as a goose...and sounded like a baby rattle. But of course the hand is not fit to the replacement cylinder and will not index (advance) the cylinder. Anyway, the gun really is too good cosmetically (although I despise parked guns personally) to be relegated to a life of obscurity among the 300+ aluminum dummy guns we inventory. Guess I'll have to "git er' done". Any suggestions? /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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Well I wouldn't attempt to fix it even with the book. But that's just me. I don't fix usually so much as I make the situation worse. That being said I agree with A1A about the benefits of buying the book. If this were my handgun I'd send it to Grant Cunningham or Cylinder and Slide. I've heard good things about both of them.

If you're curious the reason I decided to purchase the holsters from your company was because of the jpegs on your website. When I saw that most of your holsters had revolvers in them I said that's my guy! I only mention this because I also own a business. We really like to know little things like that in order to know if we're reaching our target customers.

Dave

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
[ QUOTE ]
If you're curious the reason I decided to purchase the holsters from your company was because of the jpegs on your website. When I saw that most of your holsters had revolvers in them I said that's my guy! I only mention this because I also own a business. We really like to know little things like that in order to know if we're reaching our target customers.

Dave



[/ QUOTE ]

Dave;
Thank you. If it were practical, I'd craft nothing but revolver holsters...well maybe holsters for the 1911's and a few other Colt autos too! /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif It is helpful to know that good people like you are within our specialty market niche and understand what we do for collectors, CCW and law enforcement personnel. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Here's a photo of the PPS in question, pictured at bottom.

The light spots are cotton lint from the Breakfree CLP. It's a good product, but really attracts lint. Anyway, the top PPS c.1969 (one of my old service revolvers)is still about 90% to 95%, too good for banging around the holster shop. The C.1927-28 Detective Special (my old off duty gun)is used for ads and publicity only. I have another "old dog" PP with barrel cut to 2 inches for the shop work.

I thought perhaps, that I might send the parked piece down to Horace Booth at Ford's in Florida. He and Larna Ford have capably restored others for me. But considering what I paid for this revolver it's probably not justifiable. By the time all is said and done...I could just buy another for my personal collection in far superior condition for the same (or less) investment. These three in particular, of course, represent the 1st., 2nd. and 3rd. model grip frame variations of the PP/PPS. I believe I'll tinker around with it awhile, and see if anyone else on the FORUM has a suggestion for fixing her up here at the shop. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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The Searcher
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Lefty, I still recommend the book. It is not just a takedown manual. It is an illustrated guide to checking, replacing and necessary fitting of all parts in D and E/I frames. The series of "Kuhnhausen" books was supposedly written as "textbooks" for gunsmith training. JMHO /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gifSuccess! It turned out to be a worn cylinder stop and spring. Changed out the crane assembly and cylinder as well. Now this old PPS locks up tight, indexing perfectly, ranges to rod. The tune up is complete. After I shoot it, I'll decide on a restored finish or....maybe pimp it up! /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif Thanks for your advice...maybe I'll pick up Kuhnhausen's book sometime. /forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif It would probably be helpful in the future with other projects.
 

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I'm very happy to hear that everything turned out OK for you. Sounds like your a bit more comfortable tinkering around in there than I am.

Dave
 
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