Colt Agent Dilemma


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redraidermgr
October 31, 2011, 07:39 AM
Hey everyone,

I was at one of my local pawn shops day before yesterday and was looking at their selection of revolvers. I have been looking for a 38 or 357 snubbie for pocket carry. I found two revolvers fit the bill. an overpriced Rossi and a beautiful Colt Agent revolver.

I checked out the colt fairly well as per what i learned on the "buying a used revolver" thread in this section. the overall look of the revolver was very good. The bluing was very good (about 90% is what I would guess) and it had the original colt grips that were a little scratched but in good shape overall, The lockup and cylinder gap was very nice and tight on both. The timing was good. I dont know the age of the revolver, if it is a newer one from the run in the 80s or one of the originals (I looked that info up when I got home from the shop as I did not know much about the revolver in general and may not have it right). I almost put it on layaway right then and there :evil:.

My question to all of the more knowledgeable revolver fans on this forum is what is the going price for these guns? I checked gun broker but the prices were ranging fairly wide on the day i looked. They have the price listed at $400 which I am not sure is a fair price or not.

Another dilemma I have is that I could get a used or new S&W lightweight for much less than this gun. I am not necessarily "cheap" but i don't have a lot of disposable income but the layaway plan at this shop makes it very easy to think about snatching it up even though it is more expensive than a Smith and Wesson. I love the looks of a good revolver which is a fact that my wife just doesn't understand that much. We both like auto and she tolerates my love of revolvers and even told me that I was free to get one of the few guns that I was looking at and put it on layaway (a rock island .45 because i have always wanted a .45, a kel-tec pf9 that my wife might enjoy as well because she likes 9mm semi-autos, and the colt revolver because I have always loved a good little snub-nose revolver).

I like the fact that this Colt offers me an extra shot than most of the modern S&W revolvers (6 rounds instead of 5) and the fit and finish on this revolver is beautiful. I had not considered buying a colt because I never thought I would find a used colt in such wonderful condition.

I have been thinking over this all weekend since Saturday morning and it is still weighing quite heavily on my mind. Please feel free to comment on how you think the price level is, as well as what you think of the dilemma as a whole? Also I know there are quite a few colt fans as well, I will admit that I don't know much about this revolver and had to do a little looking when i got home from the shop for more info on this gun. What is it's reputation and your thoughts on the colt agent line?

I apologize for a rambling post. I have a lot of questions and thoughts rolling through my mind and I am trying to sort them out and make a decision. Thanks for any input everyone.

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critter
October 31, 2011, 07:44 AM
Great gun at a fair price (at least around here). That might be just a bit heavy for true pocket carry, but if it fits your needs, that would be a great choice.

I believe you could likely get your money back in a resale if you found out later that you didn't like it.

redraidermgr
October 31, 2011, 07:52 AM
Thanks critter,

This is one of the first ones that I have seen locally and I am just intrigued by it. I know there are lighter and cheaper options out there but it is hard to beat the look and feel of a nice old revolver like this one. It felt great in my hand and was very tempting.

As for being a little heavy I am the type of guy that carries a lot of keys, a cellphone, a wallet, and a pocket knife in my pockets or on my waist every time that I step out of the door. I am hopefully about to get my concealed carry license soon and I am looking for a lighter gun than a Ruger P95 or S&W M19 with a 4" barrel. I have a good belt and a little extra weight doesn't bother me a lot but lighter would be better.

Ala Dan
October 31, 2011, 09:04 AM
Excellent choice, I have a late 72-or very early 73 Colt Agent (polished blue,
not parkerized) that I will be carrying concealed today~! ;) :D

Chindo18Z
October 31, 2011, 10:44 AM
These days, prices for shooter grade Agents, Cobras, and Detective Specials (75% - 90%) are in the $400 - $500 range, depending upon actual condition.

It would be rare to find one in decent shape for less than $400.

If the gun is in nice mechanical shape with a little honest finish/grip wear, $400 is a very fair price. I'd buy it if I didn't already have a Cobra. ;)

You've already thought about the classic Smith vs. Colt talking points, but to summarize, the Colt offers:

1. Added weight for recoil control
2. That extra 6th shot
3. Compact CCW size (in the Agent format)
4. (IMHO) Higher quality materials & construction
5. Better $$$$ appreciation/depreciation value

On the other hand, a Smith J-Frame .38 is smaller, lighter, cheaper, and has a possibly slightly better S&W DA trigger pull. Conversely, the Colt will typically have a better SA pull.

The Rossi shouldn't even be in the equation. You are talking Ford, Chevy, Yugo.

Also, just as with shopping for cars or shoes...the one that "sings" to you (and fits your hand best) is the one to get. Sounds like you already have an opinion on that. Get the Colt.

franco45
October 31, 2011, 10:49 AM
Great gun at a fair price (at least around here). That might be just a bit heavy for true pocket carry, but if it fits your needs, that would be a great choice

I pocket carried my Agent a lot this summer. I believe the weight is 15.5 oz. I didn't find it too heavy. My LCP is much smaller but the Agent found it's way into my pocket quite often.

I paid about $370.00 out the door 6 months ago. Great little gun.

ColtPythonElite
October 31, 2011, 12:45 PM
I have an Agent or two. They are my choice for pocket carry. $400 is a fair price.

OldCavSoldier
October 31, 2011, 12:55 PM
Get the Agent. While I am particularly a Smith fan, you cannot go wrong with a Colt in very good condition.

Guillermo
October 31, 2011, 01:00 PM
I write this with a D- Frame on my hip.

Great guns.

Perhaps the finest concealed carry snub ever produced

SwampWolf
October 31, 2011, 04:26 PM
On the other hand, a Smith J-Frame .38 is smaller, lighter...

The Colt Cobra/Agent variants weigh the same as a Smith Airweight (16 ounces). The Cobra/Agent cylinders are 1/10th of an inch wider than the Smith J-frames are.

4thHorseman
October 31, 2011, 04:34 PM
I love Colt revolvers. Just fantastic guns to carry.
I recommend anytime you buy a colt revolver of the old type lock work, you check the timing on the cylinders. They have been known to go out of timing with use. JMHO

Chindo18Z
October 31, 2011, 07:29 PM
The Colt Cobra/Agent variants weigh the same as a Smith Airweight (16 ounces). The Cobra/Agent cylinders are 1/10th of an inch wider than the Smith J-frames are.

Depends on which J-frame you're talking about. Several versions throughout the years have weighed quite a bit less than 16 oz.

I've CCW'ed Det Specials and Cobras for several decades and I consider them bigger guns than the little Smiths [Models 637 (13.5 oz), 42 (13 oz), & 37 (12.5 oz)] I've also carried.

Yeah, they are very close, and as someone who routinely totes a 5" Government Model, I hardly take note of the difference. But...the alloy Smiths are lighter and smaller.

Guillermo
October 31, 2011, 07:31 PM
But...the alloy Smiths are lighter and smaller

quite true

and are much more difficult to shoot well

if one goes that route extra practice is almost always required (David E and Mr. Boreland are obvious exceptions)

SwampWolf
October 31, 2011, 07:53 PM
The Colt Cobra/Agent variants weigh the same as a Smith Airweight (16 ounces). The Cobra/Agent cylinders are 1/10th of an inch wider than the Smith J-frames are.

Depends on which J-frame you're talking about.

As indicated, I am referencing the Airweight (Model 642) J-frame Smith-which weighs 16 ounces-the same as the Colt Cobra/Agent.

redraidermgr
October 31, 2011, 08:36 PM
thanks everyone for the replies, I appreciate them all. I do like the colt and how light it is (I did notice that it was about as light as the smiths (a few ounces will not bother me). I have heard the older ones are not rated for +P rounds but the newer ones sort of are. From what i read you should send the gun to a gunsmith after every 1k rounds of +P. what bothers me about buying a used gun like this is how many rounds of +P have been fired from it before? If I did buy it i would have to find a competent gunsmith in this area that knows colt revolvers before i would feel safe carrying +P rounds in it.

By the way I did some looking online today and found that the revolver is one of the newer models probably produced in the 83-86 run. It is parkerized, has the shrouded barrel, and has the non checkered grips (cheaper to manufacture). So I believe these are +P rated. Not sure if I would ever put +p through it because of the possible wear that would result from their use and how hard it is to find a gunsmith I trust in this area.

ColtPythonElite
October 31, 2011, 08:43 PM
I have a NIB last gen Agent. True, the manual calls for a check-up after 1k +P rounds. With used Agents/Cobras, I have never worried about about +P round count. As long as the gun functions properly, I'm good with it. I doubt if there are many of these guns out there that got feed a steady enough diet of +P's to add up to 1k. Guns like this are carried alot and shot very little.

Guillermo
October 31, 2011, 09:19 PM
I have heard the older ones are not rated for +P rounds but the newer ones sort of are

internet rumor

the standard ammo before 1970 was the same pressure as the "+P" of today.

redraidermgr
November 1, 2011, 02:29 AM
Cool thanks guys

I hope to go look at it again this week and give it another good once over and may put it on layaway if the budget still suffices.

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