Colt Trooper 38 Special - What's it worth?


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Slip Shooter
August 9, 2005, 04:10 PM
A local pond shop has this firearm on display for $295. 4 inch barrel , 6 shot, adjustable sights.

Condition is about 85% except for well worn grips and pitting on first ˝ inch of barrel, otherwise bluing is of a dull color. It seems tight and locks up nicely. The innards may well need cleaning out as it seems to stack moderately in double action mode single action seems ok.

I have no experience with colt firearms other than a previously owned Trooper Mk III.

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22-rimfire
August 9, 2005, 07:14 PM
In the condition you mention, I would have to say it is substantially over priced by about $100 for a Trooper Mark III. The value on the old model Trooper is about the same. As-new ones sell for $450ish. If you want it, I'd offer about $160-175 for it (no more). But, it really is a fine revolver and would make an excellent shooter. Check the timing and lockup.

dfariswheel
August 9, 2005, 07:42 PM
Since the actual Trooper Mark III was never made in .38 Special, I'm assuming you've found an original Colt Trooper Model.

An original; Trooper has the same action as the Colt Python, and in fact is often called a "Poor man's Python".

These are excellent, strong, high-quality guns.

The Trooper, like the Python, WILL have a trigger that "stacks" so this is normal.

Price for an 85% Trooper is around the 225 to $250 range.

You would add about $15 to $20 for Target hammer and original target grips.

Earlier .38 Special Troopers have the firing pin mounted on the hammer. Later guns have the firing pin mounted in the frame.

Here's a link to a site with production serial numbers by year:
http://proofhouse.com/colt/

Standing Wolf
August 9, 2005, 11:21 PM
The innards may well need cleaning out as it seems to stack moderately in double action mode...

Once again, dfariswheel has nailed it. I can add only this: the gun probably does need a good cleaning, which may slightly alleviate stacking, but probably won't affect it at all. Colt revolvers stack in double action, even those with coil main springs.

Once you get used to stacking, you can rely on it to know when the trigger will break—but that sometimes takes awhile.

Slip Shooter
August 10, 2005, 01:03 PM
I just purchased the .38 Special Trooper from the pawn shop. They came down to $220 but I had already decided to pay no more than $175 for the revolver. After telling the proprietor I would think about it, I turned to leave, the lady said would you buy it for $200. I said yes if that includes all taxes. She agreed. That would figure at $185 plus tax.

Did I do Good?

The bottom of the grip frame is marked SCPD, obviously a Police trade in. Would someone identify SCPD for me?

I want to thank everyone for their input. I felt prepared as I went to the pawn shop this morning.

One last request. I have taken many S&W's apart over the years but, never a Colt. Where can I find info on the disassembly of this firearm?

dfariswheel
August 10, 2005, 04:04 PM
You did good.

The best, (and about only) disassembly info on the Colt is:
"The Colt Double Action Revolvers: A Shop Manual, Volume One" by Jerry Kuhnhausen.

This is available from Brownell's, MidwayUSA, and can be ordered by most online and local book sellers.
Price is around $30.00, and will be the best money you can spend.

The Kuhnhausen books are the absolute best source of info available, and I consider them to be required equipment for a gun owner, whether you intend to disassemble or not.

The Kuhnhausen Colt manual covers EVERYTHING known about the Colt's including full disassembly-reassembly, trouble shooting, the critical test-adjustments for correct timing, parts inspection, how to adjust parts for correct function, how to replace parts, and tune the revolver.......ALL done the "right way", which is to say the Colt Factory way.

This is NOT a "Billy Bob" "make it work, somehow" book.

sgt127
August 10, 2005, 08:52 PM
(Snicker) You are gonna have fun when you get that sideplate off...I know Smith revolvers. Been to armorers School. I can tinker with a Smith in the dark. First time I got into the guts of a Python, NOTHING made sense. After awhile, its not quite as intimidating.

P95Carry
August 10, 2005, 09:34 PM
Looks like an OK deal - I will tho as more precise - drop this thread into handguns-revo's. :)

22-rimfire
August 11, 2005, 10:29 PM
Slip Shooter: You did well. You handled that bit of commerce nicely!

HighVelocity
August 11, 2005, 10:31 PM
Bring on the pics! Nothing warms my heart like a sweet deal on a wheelgun. :D

Standing Wolf
August 11, 2005, 11:03 PM
First time I got into the guts of a Python, NOTHING made sense. After awhile, its not quite as intimidating.

I still find the guts of Colt revolvers intimidating after three decades—and that's with the Kuhnhausen book at hand.

P95Carry
August 11, 2005, 11:05 PM
I still find the guts of Colt revolvers intimidating after three decades You intimidated? Nah!! :neener: :)

Slip Shooter
August 12, 2005, 09:24 PM
Sorry, I don't have the equipment to post pictures.

As for an update, I cleaned the barrel and cylinder chambers thoroughly and found the bore and cylinder in perfect order. Timing, headspace, end shake, etc. all seem good. Every thing locks up tightly, SA and DA.

In lieu of disassembling the firearm, I simply washed the innards by squirting, Kano Laboratories, Kroil into the frame allowing the penetrating oil to drain out of the openings until it nearly dried up. I performed a lube job in similar manner using CRC Electrical Grade 2-26 spray to penetrate the innards and allowed it to drain thoroughly. The CRC 2-26 lubricates, penetrates, cleans and protects al metal surfaces but, leaves a very thin surface of lubrication.

Very few particles of trash washed out of the lock-work, indicating the inside was clean before lubricating. The action is now much smoother and has less stacking in the DA mode. The revolver was probably dry on the inside.

If my fancy clean and lube job drys up I will remove the side plate carefully, look inside, and do a better lube job using Tetra Gun Grease. I don't think I will have to remove parts, just lube where necessary.

Thanks defariswheel for the url on Colt serial numbers and dates, and info on the Shop Manual purchase. The serial number indicates a 1964 birth.

I am very pleased with the way this old 38 Special Trooper turned out.

aryfrosty
August 14, 2005, 01:57 AM
I enjoyed your rare good luck finding that old Colt. When I came out of the Navy and started working on the streets I bought an original Trooper .357 and loved it. I traded it 10 years later and have been looking for another like it since. Also worked third with a gentleman who found one in .38 Spl which had been satin-nickled and was really sweet. I have a good gun store owner nearby who I have asked to put me on the list for the first one he gets in either .38 or .357. They are scarcer than I care to think.

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