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Colt DA New Army

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by jtburton, Nov 12, 2003.

  1. jtburton

    jtburton New Member

    Nov 12, 2003
    A friend of mine has what appears to be a Colt DA New Army in 38 spec. At least the diagram in Numrich gun parts seems to match. It has apparently been left in a damp spot and has quite a bit of surface rust on one side. The bluing looks to be about 30-40 percent. He would like to have to cleaned up and put back in shape, both as a shooter and for its family value; it was his grandfather's. The serial number seems to be 90 xxx in two lines on the bottom of the grip frame. If it is not valuable as a colectors item, he would probable like it reblued. Do you have any comment or recommendations?

  2. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Senior Elder

    Dec 24, 2002
    Without a picture I'll have to take you word that the revolver is a Colt "New Army" model. If so it should be marked "D.A. 38" on the side of the barrel, and is chambered in .38 Long Colt, not .38 Special. If you do shoot it be sure to use the right kind of ammunition.

    Serial number 90,xxx was made during 1892 - the first year of manufacture.

    It has a modest collector's value. While cleaning it up should enhance the value reblueing it will detract from it. As it is chambered in .38 L.C. it has almost no value as a shooter. I would suggest that it be kept as a family relic.
  3. guy sajer

    guy sajer Active Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I have always considered these to be the "under-rated" Colt . They are historically very significant being the first successful swing out cylinder revolver . I own 7 or 8 in .38 & .41 , military & civilian . If you find them good unaltered condition before a "gunsmith" gets into it , they are reliable shooters .
    Collectors really didn't discover them until the past few years .
  4. Jim K

    Jim K Elder

    Dec 31, 2002
    I certainly agree on the under-rated part. The military version of that revolver was used by the U.S. armed forces for 17 years (officially, actually a lot longer) through the period of the Spanish American war and the emergence of the U.S. as a world power. It is barely mentioned in collector's books and catalogs, and then only as the gun that failed to stop the Moros in the Philippines.

    Yet, the Colt Single Action Army was used for less time, and is considered a great military weapon, with piles of books written about it.


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