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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I picked up a Nickle SAA yesterday and I am not sure what I have. I am a novice at this and I would appreciate some input. I will try to add some pictures. This frame has 3 lines for the patent information and the Horse is inside a circle. It is a black powder style frame. The serial number is 3 digits with a letter -a number - and a letter stamped above the serial number in a slightly different font. It is a very nice gun but I am wondering about some of the markings. There is no caliber listed on the barrel and it is listed as 44-40 on the hammer end of the cylinder. Inside the grips the same letter-number-letter sequence is marked and the grips do say Colt Hartford CT inside them. I am not sure if this is something someone has made from a mixture of parts or if it is an old gun that has been refinished with parts replaced or if it is a new gun with some type of custom work and custom serial number.

7430.jpg 7433.jpg 1.jpg
 

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It is a Parts gun with a renumbered antique frame. Since the frame pre dates 1899 there is nothing to worry about legal wise. It is against the law to possess a gun with an altered or removed manufacturer's applied serial number made after 1898. Years ago when I worked as a smith in a shop we used to apply numbers like this to pre 68 long guns with no factory serial numbers. I don't know if the ATF asked for this to be done or what the reason was but I have seen it on mare then a few guns with different initials. Long guns did not require numbers until after the 1968 gun control act.
 

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First off, welcome to the forum!

One thing I can tell you is that it's a 1st gen frame produced sometime in 890; sometime within that year are the only guns with the 3 date-3 line patent date stamp was used with the full circled colt together. The serial # range is ~ 131000 to ~ 137000.

Other than that the gun is what's known as a 'mixmaster' gun with parts from later vintage.

If the cyl and/or hammer are 2nd gen they will have the rampant pony stamped on them: the cyl on the rear face and the hammer on the left side of the base (must be removed to see it).

The hammer has a floating firing which didn't come about until the mid 1960s.

Of course the frame is not rated for smokeless powder cartridges so only black powder cartridges should be used for the safety of the gun.
 

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One thing I can tell you is that it's a 1st gen frame produced sometime in 1890; sometime within that year are the only guns with the 3 date-3 line patent date stamp was used with the full circled colt together. The serial # range is ~ 131000 to ~ 137000.
Yes, that is true except the circled colt appears rather boldly stamped, especially for a renickeled firearm. I suspect this is a later addition, presumably at the time of reassembly and renickeling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you all for the information. You have told me what I suspected when I bought the gun. I just wanted to be sure I was doing the right thing before I wear this one out at the range.
 

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It may have been stolen at one time and the serial numbers removed. The strange serial # may be an BATFE assigned # or a local law enforcement agency.

Also you can look under the ejector rod housing, on the cyl, and grip straps for a matching 3 or 4 digit matching # indicating it went back to Colt for rebuilding.

The hammer looks like a 2nd gen round top.

Did you check the rear face of the cyl for a pony stamp?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Did you check the rear face of the cyl for a pony stamp?[/QUOTE]
I do not see a pony stamp. 44-40 is all I can find on it.
 

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My mistake, it wouldn't be a 2nd gen and have a pony since it's 44-40. None were 2nd gen. Must be a 3rd gen cyl. A photo of the back of the cyl will confirm that.
 

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First off, welcome to the forum!

One thing I can tell you is that it's a 1st gen frame produced sometime in 890; sometime within that year are the only guns with the 3 date-3 line patent date stamp was used with the full circled colt together. The serial # range is ~ 131000 to ~ 137000.

Other than that the gun is what's known as a 'mixmaster' gun with parts from later vintage.

If the cyl and/or hammer are 2nd gen they will have the rampant pony stamped on them: the cyl on the rear face and the hammer on the left side of the base (must be removed to see it).

The hammer has a floating firing which didn't come about until the mid 1960s.

Of course the frame is not rated for smokeless powder cartridges so only black powder cartridges should be used for the safety of the gun.
''

Hondo, the patent dates and the pony are spurious. That's one of the worst pony reproduction stamps I've ever seen. The patent dates replicate the date used pre 1880, with the straight ditto marks, but it's not an original stamp. This gun was made up for someone using with I think is an Italian frame, so if the numbers were removed, it would be illegal. Terrible polishing and plating job.

JP
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·

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This makes it a modern firearm as opposed to an antique gun. It had some of us fooled. Think how easy it would be for this to sold as an antique and breaking all the laws.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I thought it was an old frame that had been reconditioned and new parts added. If I get rid of it the person getting it will know exactly what they are getting. I am just happy we learned what it actually is. Thank you to everyone who chimed in.
 

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"That's one of the worst pony reproduction stamps I've ever seen..."

OMG, I enlarged that pony, and you are so correct. It resembles an anteater.
 
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