Colt Trooper mk III


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303 hunter
December 6, 2012, 09:11 PM
I got a REALLY great deal on a 4" stainless Trooper mk III. Other than a few small scratches,it's in great shape. Tight lockup,great timing,original grips,box,paperwork,and manual. I don't have luck like this,something will screw up soon! I know this gun is not as strong as my GP100,but will the colt handle a steady diet of full power 357? My Ruger changes POI quite a bit from 38 to 357,so I use 357. Don't want to abuse the Colt,but I do want to shoot it. I do handload;what are some good loads for the Colt? Thanks!

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The Lone Haranguer
December 6, 2012, 09:20 PM
Stainless? It might be a factory electroless nickel that they called "Coltguard," but is almost certainly not stainless. Do you have any pictures?

303 hunter
December 6, 2012, 09:46 PM
Stainless? It might be a factory electroless nickel that they called "Coltguard," but is almost certainly not stainless. Do you have any pictures?
I have pics,but don't know how to post them. If you'll pm your e mail,I'll send them. I looked on some of the online auctions,and they have several advertised as stainless.

DPris
December 6, 2012, 11:21 PM
I never saw a stainless MKIII.

Look in a good loading manual, each gun is a bit different. Work up your own best loads.
The gun can handle a fair amount of full-bore .357s.
Denis

Walkalong
December 7, 2012, 12:15 AM
I am not aware of a SS Mk III either. I do have a nickle plated Trooper Mk III. Superb guns. Congrats on finding a good deal on one. :)

bannockburn
December 7, 2012, 01:12 AM
The Colt Trooper MK.III was built like the proverbial tank, a very strong and capable revolver with full house loads. Never made out of stainless steel though, more than likely it's as The Lone Haranguer posted, an electroless nickel finish which Colt called Coltguard.

Lucky Derby
December 7, 2012, 07:35 AM
The Python and the King Cobra were the first Colt revolvers available in stainless. This was several years after the MKIII was discontinued. In fact the KC replaced the MKV, which replaced the MKIII.
It may be a factory or aftermarket finish, but it is not stainless.

dgroff85
December 7, 2012, 09:30 AM
Upload a picture to photobucket, copy the image code on the right side and paste the image code here, I also don't think Colt made the trooper in stainless, I think it might be nickel. You can also open up the cylinder and see if there is a "S" stamp.

22-rimfire
December 7, 2012, 11:34 AM
The Colt Trooper Mark III was made with blue, nickel, and electroless nickel (Coltguard) finishes. There were no stainless Trooper Mark III's made as regular production. The coltguard finish looks like a matte stainless finish. Ruger and S&W were the first companies to climb on board with the stainless "craze" and early on, they sold for a slight premium over a blued revolver. Colt came along later with stainless guns with the Mark V action and the Python which occurred after the Trooper Mark III was discontinued.

The Mark III is one of the strongest revolvers on the planet in terms of being able to handle full power 357 mag loads. You don't need to baby it, but at the same time, I would not abuse it. My Trooper Mark III is my favorite 357 mag revolver and I shoot it. It is not a collector piece.

Old Fuff
December 7, 2012, 11:47 AM
The Colt Mk III series are approximately the same size as the Ruger GP 100, but the frame is made from a machined forging where the latter is investment cast. Both are far stronger then required, but of the two the Colt is generally believed to be the stronger.

The larger problem, which is now common to all Colt hand ejector revolvers with the possible exception of the Python, is that new spare parts are no longer available - at least at the Colt factory. Also if you break a firing pin (which is not common) installing a new one (if available) is a factory job.

aarondhgraham
December 7, 2012, 01:28 PM
The larger problem, which is now common to all Colt hand ejector revolvers with the possible exception of the Python, is that new spare parts are no longer available - at least at the Colt factory. Also if you break a firing pin (which is not common) installing a new one (if available) is a factory job.

Which is why I don't shoot mine very much.

I bought it 3 years ago,,,
It truly is a sweet shooting handgun,,,
But I just can't make it a part of my regular shooting rotation.

It serves night-guard duty in an Uncle Mikes holster,,,
The holster is screwed to the side rail of my bed.

Aarond

.

ColtPythonElite
December 7, 2012, 08:55 PM
The last thing I am gonna do is not shoot a gun due to fear of breaking it or wearing it out. If I bust it. I will fix it, or replace it....I don't own any shooter wheel guns that aren't Colts.

DPris
December 7, 2012, 10:31 PM
That's the point- out-of-production Colt revolvers are getting harder to "fix" when something does go out on them.
Denis

BYJO4
December 7, 2012, 10:39 PM
The Colt Trooper was a great revolver and can handle mag loads. Enjoy shooting it since that is what you bought it for.

bikemutt
December 7, 2012, 11:43 PM
That's the point- out-of-production Colt revolvers are getting harder to "fix" when something does go out on them.
Denis
I called Colt to get a sideplate screw for an Anaconda; they said they could not help since that part was no longer for sale over the counter. I did eventually find the screw at a hoarder. Cost me $18.

Anyway, S&W has some of the same issues with parts for finishes they no longer offer, like nickel. This is not idle speculation on my part.

Old Fuff
December 8, 2012, 12:04 AM
The last thing I am gonna do is not shoot a gun due to fear of breaking it or wearing it out. If I bust it. I will fix it, or replace it....I don't own any shooter wheel guns that aren't Colts.

Your selection of older Colt revolvers may be impeccable, but given the present situation you may find that a broken small part can sideline an expensive revolver. It isn’t that you shouldn’t shoot your prized guns, but rather that you’d better think about investing in some spare parts while they are still somewhat available.

You are now faced with at least two problems: (1) Finding parts when even the manufacturer can’t (or won’t) supply them, and (2) finding a qualified gunsmith to fit them when the factory won’t do it.

ColtPythonElite
December 8, 2012, 12:12 AM
Eh, if I bust one and can't fix it, I get another one and possibly use the first as a parts gun. As far as a qualified gunsmith goes, I have that covered....FWIW, I have some parts already squirrelled away.

2zulu1
December 8, 2012, 02:32 AM
Congratulations on your MkIII, looking forward to seeing pics and your range reports. The metallurgy on the forged Colts is some of the strongest on the market.

Having said that, I have a MkIII with timing issues. Since it's such a nice shooter, balance and accuracy, I sent it back to Colt to be fixed. After 7 months at Colt, they quoted me a price to fix it, I finally got it back, not only was the timing issue not fixed, but it now has a cylinder streak.

I agree about owning guns to shoot, so it pains me not being able to shoot the Trooper DA.

hopefully the OP will be more fortunate. :)

DPris
December 8, 2012, 04:32 AM
Time passes, along with the realistic practicality of continuing to shoot out-of-production guns.

You buy one & shoot it, you ALWAYS run the risk of busting something that may be hard or impossible to repair or replace.
Risk it or don't, an individual choice.
Denis

Old Fuff
December 8, 2012, 12:04 PM
Eh, if I bust one and can't fix it, I get another one and possibly use the first as a parts gun.

Perhaps. But owners of pre Mk (series) revolvers should understand that some lockwork parts were altered by hand fitting, and won't necessarily work in another gun - nor can they be fitted to work if the necessary material at certain points is gone.

In later models most of the parts are "drop in" but this does you little good if you can't get the parts.

The point of all this is not that you have to retire older Colt's or other revolvers, but one does need to understand the risks, and use them accordingly.

Old Fuff
December 8, 2012, 12:08 PM
Having said that, I have a MkIII with timing issues. Since it's such a nice shooter, balance and accuracy, I sent it back to Colt to be fixed. After 7 months at Colt, they quoted me a price to fix it, I finally got it back, not only was the timing issue not fixed, but it now has a cylinder streak.

Exactly - what are these unresolved timing issues?

2zulu1
December 8, 2012, 01:43 PM
Exactly - what are these unresolved timing issues?
Cylinder rotates and fails to lock on the following chamber. I manually rotate the cylinder to the next chamber to get the bolt to lock into the cylinder groove.

ultramag44
December 8, 2012, 01:59 PM
Since this thread is pic poor.... ;)

My (somewhat rare) Mk V

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/trooper%20Mk%20V/Trooper2.jpg

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/trooper%20Mk%20V/Trooper3.jpg

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/trooper%20Mk%20V/Trooper1.jpg

Old Fuff
December 8, 2012, 05:34 PM
Cylinder rotates and fails to lock on the following chamber. I manually rotate the cylinder to the next chamber to get the bolt to lock into the cylinder groove.

One time I bought a Trooper Mk III at an auction for a song because no one else would touch it. It was doing exactly what you describe. The cause was a cylinder bolt spring that was assembled backwards. I took it out, turned it around, and put it back.

Thereafter the gun worked fine... ;)

4v50 Gary
December 8, 2012, 05:46 PM
2zulu1 said:

Cylinder rotates and fails to lock on the following chamber. I manually rotate the cylinder to the next chamber to get the bolt to lock into the cylinder groove.

1) Check if the bolt (cylinder stop) is dropping to permit the cylinder to rotate.
2) Check if the hand is rises up to engage the cylinder ratchet.
3) Check if the cylinder ratchet/extractor star is clean and not dinged up on all six positions so that the hand does engage it.

303 hunter
December 8, 2012, 06:13 PM
That's the point- out-of-production Colt revolvers are getting harder to "fix" when something does go out on them.
Denis
Does anyone make aftermarket Colt revolver parts?

dfariswheel
December 8, 2012, 07:53 PM
For the Mark III and later models, other than lighter weight main springs and trigger springs....No.

Some companies like Jack First are starting to make new replacement hands, and bolts for the older models, but these parts are VERY unfinished and need extensive shaping before you can even start to fit them to the gun.

22-rimfire
December 8, 2012, 08:53 PM
Folks with problems with these revolvers are not common. I think the folks that have problems just saw this thread and the "experts" attention was focused here, so they would perhaps get some answers.

I shoot my Trooper Mark III. If it broke tomorrow, I'd feel bad, but life goes on and I would try to deal with it. I really enjoy shooting this revolver and I hope you enjoy yours. Nothing lasts forever. But I think you'll find the your Mark III very durable.

Walkalong
December 8, 2012, 10:35 PM
I'm sure going to shoot mine. No use having it not to shoot it.

22-rimfire
December 8, 2012, 11:31 PM
The Trooper Mark III is my favorite 357 mag that I shoot. It is really sweet to shoot and I would put it up against many Pythons in terms of the trigger and accuracy. But, I have a few of them in 22 and 22 WMR that I have not shot. I viewed them as sleepers in the Colt collector arena, and purchase them when I find them in suitable condition and at a price I am comfortable with.

Walkalong
December 9, 2012, 10:37 PM
My wife shot my Trooper Mk III this afternoon using some light loads. She announced that she liked it, and she's picky.

Remllez
December 13, 2012, 11:08 AM
OP,

You bought it to shoot....so shoot it....:).....those of you looking for obsolete or hard to find parts don't forget about (Jack First Gunparts.) They specialize in obsolete parts and manufacture them new to factory specs.

One can find "parts kits" on E-bay, Gunbroker, and the like, also believe it or not Gun Shows! You have to dig around but unless it's truly rare or very old, parts can still be found if your willing to do some legwork and don't mind paying a premium.

Your Colt shouldn't be abused but it should handle regular shooting of .357's unless you plan on shooting it hard all the time. If you want to shoot truly heavy loads, buy a Blackhawk and knock yourself out.

I've been shooting a v-spring Trooper for 40 some years and it's no worse for wear. Your Trooper is not the same design but it's still a Colt! The only true way to avoid possibly breaking a gun is not use it!

303 hunter
December 13, 2012, 07:28 PM
I picked the Trooper up a few days ago. This thing is beautiful! It is nickel finished(I was told it was stainless),with target hammer and trigger. It has a small scratch on the barrel. Other than that,it looks new. Not even a speck of powder residue. Colt's website says it was made in 1972. I haven't shot it and probably won't. I'm going to sell it to finish other projects.

rswartsell
December 13, 2012, 08:13 PM
The Trooper MkIII was the first gun I bought for myself as a 19 year old airman, from a Dothan AL gunshop. The AF didn't pay airmen enough to afford a Python, so it was the Mk III.

At this point I have owned 3 and I love them. You can tell it isn't a Python action, but it ain't bad. I have never had any trouble with them and believe that it is the strongest double action .357 available. I have a Dan Wesson that gets most of my heavy load shooting but the Trooper gets the rest.

The Smiths generally get .38 spl or middling magnums. The Buffalo Bore goes to the DW and the Trooper.

rswartsell
December 13, 2012, 08:38 PM
So you are selling it? That's your right. I personally think your price is a bit high, you might just get it what with Colt inflation and all. You may one day want it back though.

I know the GP100 is a fine gun, I think the Trooper is better on a few scores and possible maintanance problems down the road may be 1 downside. No question in my mind that the Trooper is even stronger than your admittedly strong GP100. The Ruger frame is investment cast and most of the Ruger strength title comes from SA Blackhawks.
Colt forged frame metallurgy is unsurpassed.

Each to their own.

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