What colt have I inherited?


December 12, 2010, 08:20 PM
It a revolver, .32 caliber, says " .32 colt np ctg
Detective special" on the left side of barrel when you are muzzle down range... It's not too beat up, a little rust on the top rib above the cylinder, but many other parts of the gun are 100%.... If I wanted to shoot ammo through this, what ammo should I run through it. I've read on this site that it's misleading as to what ammo to shoot.

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December 12, 2010, 08:40 PM
.32 Colt New Police should be the same as .32 S&W Long

Jim Watson
December 12, 2010, 09:11 PM
And Detective Special is the model name.

December 12, 2010, 09:29 PM
Thanks guys. I assume they made a billion of these? I dont have any rare guns!

December 12, 2010, 09:54 PM
I cant seem to find out when this gun was built or how many...

December 12, 2010, 10:32 PM
Post a serial number with the last 3 digits as XXX, you will be advised of the date in short order. Detective Specials in 32 New Police are nowhere near as common as 38 Specials, not rare but not common either.

Jesse Heywood
December 12, 2010, 10:34 PM
Go here

December 12, 2010, 10:48 PM

December 12, 2010, 10:52 PM
1961 or possibly early 1962

December 12, 2010, 10:56 PM
thats neat

December 12, 2010, 10:56 PM
Open the cylinder and look inside on the front of the frame for the serial number. Then go to the following link to see what year it was made.


Then go to the next link for some information about it. It's a nice revolver.


Yours would be a first (1927-1945) or second (1946-1972) series detective special. They are actually collectible if in good condition. It was mainly used by policemen as a backup weapon. They stopped making the .32 with the third series in 1973, although a few second series were made on special order later. I have a .32 NP second series made in 1975, so it's worth checking into.

December 12, 2010, 11:04 PM
yeah, 7973 puts it right between on that website. Thanks for the web links guys. I have no urge to sell this. Im not a gun broker, but based on the bore, blueing and condition, it's a solid 7 of 10 (perfect). The bridge above the barrel on the right side is down to the metal, and a the bluing is missing only there. The entire rest of the gun is perfect. No dings, no scratches, no barrel blue wear, no sight wear, no nothing wear. The grips are original looking, and mint as mint gets. Thanks for the help guys.

December 12, 2010, 11:13 PM
Do you have a camera? You know what they say, if there's no pic it didn't happen. =o)


December 12, 2010, 11:16 PM
Packed away in the safe... I'll dig it out tonight and snap some pics of it tomorrow...

December 12, 2010, 11:25 PM
from earlier today for Grizzly who called me a liar( for not taking a picture). Man, your pistol is in great shape. Mine has some pitting on the barrel end, and a little on that rib as I listed... The brown flakes you see in the pic are NOT rust. It is flakes of brown paper bag that the gun was cosmolined and stuck in. Ive about got the cosmoline off, and just gun oil on now... shew. That cosmoline is a PITA to get off if it's been on there for 30 years. Just gummy.

December 13, 2010, 12:05 AM
I like it. Looking forward to more pics. Didn't mean to impugn your honesty, just get you to post pics. :neener: I love those guns. :o


Jesse Heywood
December 13, 2010, 02:46 AM
Take some pics after you get the gunk off. It can take a while. Sounds like a good gun to shoot, just enough wear that it's not a true collector. Grizzly's gun looks too purty to shoot!

December 13, 2010, 08:33 AM
It's a strange pistol... How powerful is that .32?

December 13, 2010, 02:29 PM
It's a strange pistol... How powerful is that .32?
Roughly equivalent to the Daisy Red Rider <cough>. Maybe I exaggerate, but it's not the bullet power, it's the gun that's neat. To me the DS sort of represents an epic battle with S&W for the police market. Colt lost out and went on to focus on the military market. Then the Glock came along and S&W is now left with the private market. There's a whole history wrapped up in there involving cowboy guns, a secret .44 mag, the entry of Ruger, and a revolution in the handgun industry.

To Jesse: Not only too purdy to shoot, the durn thing don't even feel broke in yet. So I got another one for shooting that has had a more honest life of service.


The box the purdy one came in is kind of interesting. If you look on the label the caliber (.38) is scribbled out and .32 written in as an option. Evidently when they made this second series in '75 they didn't have any of the old labels left over. :)


December 13, 2010, 04:49 PM
Nice old colt!

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