Anyone know what ammo for this old Colt?

Discussion in 'Curio & Relic Discussion' started by bgoetting, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. bgoetting

    bgoetting New Member

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    I bought a nice Colt SAA made in 1887 and am trying to figure out which ammo it takes. It says "38 Colt" stamped on the barrel. At that time there was 38 Long Colt and 38 Short Colt being manufactured. Does anyone know for sure which ammo is correct?

    Can anyone tell me what the grip is made of? It seems old and worn but doesn't look to me like ivory.
     

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  2. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Welcome to the forum. Please stop by our "Introductions" area and tell us a little more about yourself.

    Most ammo dimensions can be found on the net. How deep are the chambers reamed?
    Do you have any documents on the firearm?
     

  3. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    That more than likely would have been Black Powder.
     
  4. alsaqr

    alsaqr Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You have a beautiful gun there. The gun is chambered for .38 Long Colt. It will also shoot .38 Short Colt ammo.
     
  5. KABAR2

    KABAR2 New Member

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    The 38 long colt & short colt can also be had in smokeless but no worries it is loaded down to bp velocities.... I have a 1894 colt and some green box Remington loads that work fine in it.
     
  6. trip286

    trip286 New Member

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    you ever find out what the grips are made of? those are really nice, but I would assume they're plastic or some type of faux ivory, or bonded ivory. If they were genuine ivory the cost of the gun should reflect that fact. But let us know if you find out, they could be real ivory and the seller just didn't know what they had.
     
  7. hiwall

    hiwall Active Member

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    If the screw that holds the cylinder pin in place is screwed in from the front it is a black powder gun. If the screw is on the side it is a smokeless gun. But KABAR2 is correct you can shoot it which ever one it is.
     
  8. Reinhard

    Reinhard New Member Supporter

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    you can do the hot needle test to see if they are genuine ivory, I've seen those old coloured ivory's before ,some looked like plastic but where the real deal, real mexican eagle ivory's are not cheap! I I think they are genuine Ivory
    grips of my colt , your's seems to be a lot older
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2011
  9. KABAR2

    KABAR2 New Member

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    I just found an interesting writeup on the 38 LC

    .38 Long Colt
     
  10. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    That's not true. The transverse cylinder pin was standard from 1896. Colt didn't go smokeless until 1900 at serial 192,000. If it was proofed for smokeless it will have VP in a triangle on the trigger guard.
     
  11. bgoetting

    bgoetting New Member

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    update on the colt

    Thanks for the help! I ordered .38 LC cowboy loads from Cabellas and should have them soon.

    There is no indication that this gun is made for smokeless powder nor would I expect that from a gun made in 1887. The screw that anchors the cylinder pin comes up from the front at a 45 degree angle upwards, definitely not transverse.

    I never heard of the "hot needle test" but a hot needle did scratch the grips without any pressure so there is some polymer material in them. They are very worn so wondering if they could be old vs just fakes designed to look old. Does anyone know if there were "artificial ivory" grips back then? Could they be from the factory?

    I paid $1500 for the gun at a local gun show so I certainly didn't pay for ivory grips, just a fun shooter and attractive showpiece!