Colt Officer's Model Target .22: Which issue(1st, 2nd, 3rd?)?


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slick6
May 5, 2006, 03:26 AM
For an old Colt Officer's Model Target .22 caliber revolver, with an 5 digit serial number of 19317 and, with the last patent date(Year)of 1926, which issue would this version of these Officer's Model Target .22's be?

Whatever issue this might be, is this one of the good issues or one with a lower collector value and/or just not being as good of an Officer's Model .22, as the better issues of these guns? The asking price for this particular OMT .22 is $850 and, is this too much to pay for this gun being in 98% condition, as estimated?

What other information can anyone tell me about this particular issue of an OMT .22?

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22-rimfire
May 5, 2006, 10:31 AM
Your OMT 22 dates out to be 1938 as serial numbers are reported to start with 18,000 in 1938 and start with 21,000 in 1939. Little or no production ocurred during the WWII years and Colt assembled the early post war models from parts on hand prior to introducing the Officers Model Special.

Using the Blue Book notation on "issue", it would be considered a "Third Issue". The Third Issue is the 22 version of the OMT first introduced in 1930 and continued until 1949 when the Officers Model Special was introduced. Colt started a new serial number series with the introduction of this revolver relative to the older Officers Model revolvers which were first introduced in 1904 more or less with a counter clockwise cylinder rotation. That was changed to the typical Colt clockwise rotation with the second issue OM.

You are looking at a fine pre-war revolver. The dealer has the gun listed at the high end of current Blue Book values. Blue Book lists $825 for 100% and $750 for 98% with an additional 10% added to the value for the 22 models. Prices have been increasing on most Colt revolvers and I suspect that this is about current market price. Sounds like a very nice speciman and collectable. I would probably jump on it if I were looking for one and could afford the price as the price has been climbing steadily. The Officers Model Special is the most rare of the OM models due to limited production prior to the introduction of the Officers Model Match ("Fifth Issue"). The OMM continued to be offered until 1969 when it was dropped from production. These were considered the premium Colt 22 Revolvers of the day and are all hand fitted like the Python.

Welcome to the world of Colt 22 revolvers. They are my thing!

slick6
May 5, 2006, 11:32 AM
.22-rimfire:

Thanks for your very authorative and complete information! I had thought that this OMT .22 that I was looking at, was a third issue-but, it has been a few years since I had even considered an Officer's Model revolver, so I hadn't been reading anything about these(And I didn't have any Colt reference books to view)! Right now, I only own a NIB Officer's Model Special .38. I have never found another OMS in .22 caliber!

How would not having the gun box or papers with the third issue OMT .22, impact it's current value? Although this gun shop is asking $850 for this gun, the best price that I can get them down to is $800(Plus tax & fees)! I didn't want to overpay for one of these revolvers if this was considered to be too much, for what I'm going to get for this amount of money(Almost $900 OTD!)? Afterall, this price is very close to what Pythons are priced at in this shop(Which I was at first considering)! Of course, the bluing on these old OMT's isn't bright and shiny, like the Pythons(However, whatever type of bluing these OMT's have, seems to be a very durable, and long lasting finish)?

One thing that I happen to like about this old third issue OMT .22, is the Colt(Deep dark)redish brown wood service stocks(Looks like this is heart wood?)! Were these an extra cost option on these OMT's back in 1938?

I also noticed the two tiny front sight adjustment screws(Looks like this might be frustrating to enable adjusting the front sights?)with one screw directly in front of the sight and one on the rear side of the front sight).

22-rimfire
May 5, 2006, 01:11 PM
The factory stocks were walnut and usually had the Colt insert medallion. Early Officer's Models sometimes did not have the medallion. I believe there were some other offerings for stocks, I would have to look it up in a catalog. The front sights are called "Patridge" which are adjustable for elevation and the rear sight for windage. Colt went to a different sight with the Officers Model Specials called the "Coltmaster" which was adjustable for both windage and elevation.

If the revolver is a 98% gun, I would seriously consider buying it. The box and paper work is always a bonus. Yes, the box and paper work have value and would increase the value of the revolver. But, I consider the price you were quoted to be fair if you are interested in one of these 22 revolvers.

The OMT was always the premium target 22 revolver with the Official Police being the standard production gun. Many matches were won with these revolvers until the automatics gained favor. In particular the Woodsman Match Target was introduced in 1938 and match shooters went with the automatics for accuracy and consistancy.

From the sound of things, this revolver is one I would tuck away for the future although you won't hurt a 98% revolver shooting it as long as you store it properly, don't holster it, or fail to clean it (ie wipe it down with oil).

slick6
May 5, 2006, 01:33 PM
.22-Rimfire:

The stocks on this OMT .22 have the colt emblems in them.

Vern Humphrey
May 5, 2006, 04:04 PM
I also noticed the two tiny front sight adjustment screws(Looks like this might be frustrating to enable adjusting the front sights?)with one screw directly in front of the sight and one on the rear side of the front sight).

The OMT front sight is adjustable for elevation, the rear for windage. Just remember, you raise the front sight to lower the point of impact.

My OMT is the most accurate .22 I own, and has accounted for a ton of squirrels and rabbits.

slick6
May 5, 2006, 05:35 PM
Well, I'm very much impressed about how well made these old OMT .22's are! Although I like this revolver, I'm still stunned with "Sticker shock" regarding the original asking price of $850 and the fact that the party that owns this "Consigned" gun, doesn't want to budge off of his lowest acceptable price of $800(Before tax and fees)! What worries me, is that since these don't seem to be real popular revolvers with the masses, that I'm concerned that in the event that I should ever wish to sell this OMT .22, that this gun might be a hard sell(And, I would at least like to recoup my original investment, in this case?)? I just can't get over the fact that most gun shops are asking near Python prices for these OMT .22's(Private parties also!)? I'm really pondering over possibly buying this gun-but, since I'm sweating this out, I went and placed a hold on this gun, until next thursday!

Vern Humphrey
May 5, 2006, 05:40 PM
The OMT is the Python. It's the same frame and lockwork, with even more attention to craftsmanship. Colt had the Official Police on the same frame, brought out a heat-treated cylinder and adjustable sights to make the Model 357, and added the cosmetic underlug to that gun to produce the Python.

22-rimfire
May 5, 2006, 06:13 PM
This is not an unpopular revolver. The 22's always bring a premium.

Colt looked at making a 22 Python and when they completed their test samples they discovered that they already had the Officer's Model Match which the Python had nothing on in terms of quality. Hence, no Python 22.

SaxonPig
May 5, 2006, 10:13 PM
Ahhhh... The OMTs. Love 'em... love 'em.

I am glad that I have just about all the guns I want because I certainly couldn't afford to build a collection at today's prices.

I am not a collector so I wouldn't be interested in a pristine gun with box at $800, but if one can be found for $400 they are fantastic shooters.

Here's #45XX, supposedly first year for the .22 caliber. Chambers aren't even counter-bored. Apparently Colt didn't start doing that for a few years after the model was introduced. Hasn't stopped it from firing countless rounds in competition for many decades. The stocks are from the 1950s.

http://www.fototime.com/976476DE123A562/standard.jpg

Majic
May 5, 2006, 10:53 PM
What worries me, is that since these don't seem to be real popular revolvers with the masses, that I'm concerned that in the event that I should ever wish to sell this OMT .22, that this gun might be a hard sell
How many do you see for sale? Those of us who have them tend to hang on to them. Collectors are always on the hunt for them and the .22lr is the premium model (behind the .32 caliber which can have insane prices when you find one).
While you may wince at the price consider that it is a premium target revolver in excellent condition and almost 70 years old. If you decide to pass it probably won't be long before someone snaps it up. That is a decent price for one in that condition today. It probably won't be long before they will cost $1000 or better.

slick6
May 6, 2006, 01:59 AM
Majic:

1)Thanks!

2)Are you meaning everything that you said above also to the Third Edition of the OMT .22, like this 1938 vintage OMT .22 is?

3)Although I would liked to have found an OMS .22 to go with my NIB OMS .38 revolver, I kinda liked this particular OMT .22(Despite it not being an- OMS .22)! This sort of took me by surprise, because I had never before actually had taken to these earlier Officer's Model .22's? I'm beginning to understand their certain beauty and charm! I know that for awhile, I was on a Python kick-but, now(Although I do like this OMT .22)I'm not yet, used to the idea of these guns being priced right up there with the Pythons? At first, I thought that this just might be a "Rip off" in view of Colt not making any revolvers any longer-with everybody trying to make a quick killing on all Colt revolvers?

JohnBT
May 6, 2006, 09:04 AM
I'd buy it. Just to put the asking price in perspective:

www.gunsamerica.com/guns/976590962.htm

"1940 manufacture, 6" 22lr, unfired, 99%+, Factory medallian grips,Box."

http://images.gunsamerica.com/upload/976590962-1.jpg

"$2,650"

SaxonPig
May 6, 2006, 01:45 PM
Well, those stocks add about $400 and I wonder did it actually sell at that price. You can ask whatever you want, it's the SELLING price that matters.

JohnBT
May 6, 2006, 03:23 PM
Get your checkbook out, it's still for sale. Let's say it's worth 1/2 that,
$1325, minus $400 for the grips, and we're down to $925. I'd still pay $800 for a 98% shooter with no box. (Guns prices are high around here, so everything looks like a good deal to me.)

There's a 1st model on GA for $450, but it's advertised as "maybe 50%" and it looks worse than that in the picture.

John

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