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I think that is one of the 925 Woodsman pistols purchased by the USAF in 1949. These weren't US marked. The Air Force specified fixed sights and no slide hold open (I think). These guns were to be included in arctic survival packs for pilots. They were later sold off into the civilian market. Pretty scarce gun.
 

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I think that is one of the 925 Woodsman pistols purchased by the USAF in 1949. These weren't US marked. The Air Force specified fixed sights and no slide hold open (I think). These guns were to be included in arctic survival packs for pilots. They were later sold off into the civilian market. Pretty scarce gun.
Yes, it is one of the Air Force guns. Looks like dogface6 got it waaay cheap. Congratulations!

Bob Rayburn
 

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Thanks!

I'd had my eye on it awhile, and my fingers crossed - can't believe it wasn't snapped up for more.

It'll clean nicely, I think.

By the way, Bob - I still have that 1934 Sport Model with the stepped barrel.
 

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Thanks!

I'd had my eye on it awhile, and my fingers crossed - can't believe it wasn't snapped up for more.

It'll clean nicely, I think.

By the way, Bob - I still have that 1934 Sport Model with the stepped barrel.
That one was a helluva deal too. After seeing the original posting here I took a look and there was one bid with less than 30 minutes to go . Unlike Ebay, gunbroker doesn't mask the bidder's ID, so when I saw it was you I knew that you knew what you were doing and there was no reason for me to just run up the price for you.

Bob Rayburn
colt22.com
 

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Believe me, I do appreciate it.

It'll go nicely with some older military survival gear I have, too - like the 6" Jet Pilot's Knife (need an old Boker), the Fishing Kit, the Spit and Gaff Kit, and so on and so forth.

USAF Survival Equipment guys were treasued amongst SF folks - they got 'all' the cool gear, and they'd trade...

Now, I'm gonna sip a cup of Irish Coffee from the stainless steel cup from an old B47/B36/B52 Bail-Out Kit, and marvel at Life's surprises..

Thanks!
 

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I got it today and cleaned it, using a 'Big 45 Frontier Metal Cleaner' pad and 'Break-Free', coupled with diligence.

It cleaned up to around 95% or better, as I'd figured it would - the odd, 'flat' finish consisting largely of petrified oils and dust.

Nice piece.

Now, to read Jackson's article on it, that coincidentally was in my mailbox when I returned from picking it up.
 

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A member using the screen name - 'Jackson'.

You'd apparently found one for him some years back, since he'd included that correspondence along with a copy of his article in 'The Rampant Colt' along with his Colt Letter.
 

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I'd be glad to send anyone who wants it, a package that keeps getting added to. In addition to an old article I wrote for the Colt Collectors' Magazine, The Rampant Colt, I have copies of the Colt contract for the USAF survival Woodsman listing all the features that make this Woodsman unique and more. I am asking for $10 to cover copying, handling and postage. Contact me thru my PM.
As I wrote dogface6, there are similarities between the USAF Woodsman and the earliest 4-1/2" Colt Sport Woodsman which has similar fixed rear sight and identical ramp front sight. These early Sport Woodsman were (Introduced in 1947) only made for a few short years are while not especially rare, are not often found. My theory, is that the Colt Challenger carried on the fixed sight tradition (speculation - to compete with the low cost, but nice quality Ruger 22 Auto?) when introduced in 1950 and the Sport Woodsman was upgraded about that time with adjustable sights, like the 6 inch model. OR, for some reason, there was an overrun on the sights used in the USAF Contract? Probably needs more input, as these early fixed sight Sport Woodsmans are another yet interesting variation for us Collectors. Jackson
 

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I own 64460-S, purchased in 1994, with fixed sights and round profile front sight. See E A Brink's book pgs 44 and 50.
Also see Bill Jenkins book, "US Military and Marksmanship Automatic Pistols" pgs 102-103. USAF ordered 925 artic survival 1949, only fixed sight post war woodsman known. Colt factory order 6520. Contract W19-058 ord 5234 shipped in 37 cases to Transport Officer, Ogden, UT. Also I know 65104-S was sold through DCM Anniston, AL 11/30/1961.
 

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As a continuation of this thread - I just got the Colt Letter...

It shows that 65246S was sold to the United States Government and shipped as a part of Colt Factory Order #6525, on August 18, 1949, as a part of a 25 gun shipment to Transportation Officer, Springfield Ordnance Depot, Springfield, Massachusetts.

This accounts for one of the 25 that the Air Force didn't get.

Mine has some high-point wear on it - the dried oil having cleaned off nicely - so I'd imagine it logged some flight time

At the time of the Contract and issue, the Army had fixed-wing aircraft flying pretty much everywhere, and those DeHavillands and Otters and Caribous got over some pretty rugged terrain - they also used Survival Kits very similar to those found in the USAF's inventory, because they sometimes drew from that supply source, and vice-versa.

The problem is that Kits, Sets and Outfits' contents changed rapidly, with only core contents like First Aid, Signalling and Fishing Kits remaining the same, so tracking down a hard copy reference seems to be an impossible task, and these don't appear in any of the FMs,TMs or Ordnance Bulletins of that era - and I have a pretty extensive library.

Thanks to Bob Rayburn and Jackson for the information they provided.

Now, to find some M24 Ball ammunition...
 

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The nice part about knowing it's an Army piece, is that I can narrow my search for information.

I know a lot of old Army Aviators (fixed wing and rotary) who were trained by older ones - and they have a well-developed network to pose a question to, so I'll ask one of my old pilots to lend me a hand.

The guys most likely to've used it would've actively flown in Korea - and they were the nucleus of Army Aviation.

Oftentimes, the best part of collecting isn't the owning - it's the hunting...
 

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dogface6,

Thanks for posting the information from your letter. I'm not sure, however, why you conclude it is an "Army piece." It's true that the Ordnance Dept used an Army specification for the contract but 925 of the 950 pistols in the contract were delivered to the Ogden Air Material Area for use in Air Force survival kits. The other 25 (like yours) went to Springfield Armory.

If you are into survival stuff you might want to look for a High Standard Model G-B. Even less well known than the Colts, a similar number of pistols were purchased for the same purpose. Unlike the Colts the few that have been observed have "U.S.A.F." crudely marked on them.

Regards,
Kevin Williams
 
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