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Colt Police Positive 38 Ry.ex.agy.

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Josey, Aug 12, 2003.

  1. Josey

    Josey member

    Hey I just picked up a oddity. I have a 38 S&W Colt PP. The little pistol has a 4" barrel, combat trigger and regular hammer, I think. Silver Colt emblems on checkered walnut grips. S/N is in the 336XXX series. RY. EX. AGY. is stamped on the backstrap. Very tight and shoots very well. I also got a JAY-PEE safety holster with a springlock that is a swivel holster. There are 12 loops for 38s across the belt part. These are well used and well taken care of. What have I got?
  2. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    According to RL Wilson, if its a Police positive it wasmade in 1931, if its a Police Positive Special its made in 1929. if it is a police positive special it can handle the high speed 38/44 heavy duty loads (meaning +p should not hurt it, though with an old gun I'd stay on the mild side) it was regulated to shoot 158 gr bullets, you'll get the best POI/groups with that weight bullet.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2003
  3. Josey

    Josey member

    Hey Well, it must be 1931. I understand these were chambered for 38 New Police, 38 S&W, 38 Short Colt and British 38/200. I believe they are basically all the same cartridge. Definitely NOT a 38 Special by any means. The 38/200 British rounds were pretty hot though. I fired 147 grn Remington 38 S&W in it. It is pretty good for a combat revolver. The checkered combat trigger was what caught my eye first.
  4. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Well-Known Member


    You're Police Positive revolver will shoot .38 S&W, 38 Colt New Police and Brit. 38-200 (if you can find any) cartridges, but not the .38 Short Colt. It is part of an entirely different line of cartridges. As for the others, most use a bullet around 145 grains with a muzzle velocity of approximately 730 FPS. Not particularly hot, but perhaps hot enough for an older gun. The checkered trigger was a standard feature on Colt's at that time. The Express Company markings would slightly increase it's value to a collector. I suspect you will find it to be exceptionally accurate if not overly powerful. It sounds like a good find.
  5. dfariswheel

    dfariswheel Well-Known Member

    You have a nice collectible set.
    The Railway Express marked guns are collected, and the Jay-Pee safety holster is now a collectible in it's own right.

    The American Rifleman had a short article on the trigger-lock safety holster a few years ago.

    These were the first attempt to build a holster that was able to carry a gun well secured from loss as well as being snatch proof.
  6. Josey

    Josey member

    Hey I was not aware of a checkered trigger being standard equipment. My other Colts have smoot triggers. I picked this little gem up at a pawnshop for $160.00, I think I did alright.
  7. My Dad was a LEO back in the 40's and 50's, If that holster has a little stainless tab that hooks up under the trigger guard it's the same rig he carried back then on a Sam Brown belt. It was an early attempt at ensuring the BG's couldn't pull your Police Positive out of it's holster. It didn't take the big city bad guys long to figure out how to over-ride that safety feature. The swivel was so that he could swing the gun up while sitting in the cruiser. (A black and white '49 Ford)
    He went to work for 20 years with 6 in the gun and 12 in loops on the holster (talk about slow reloads). Todays LEOS go to work with 15 in the gun and four mags of 15 each on their duty belts, some probably carry more I really don't know.
    One thing I am sure of, that holster on a Sam Brown belt with a Colt Police Positive in the holster with 12 shiney rounds in the loops, that was the coolest looking rig I ever saw as a kid and set the stage for a lifetime romance with guns. The absolute highlight of my childhood was when I turned 13, my Dad let me shoot his "Police Gun", a moment I will never, ever forget. Or my Dad, God Rest His Soul.
  8. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus


    Thread drift, but-

    I have my grandfather's Model 14 (6" bbl) that he carried on duty, along with his pistol belt (complete with loops for cartridges). The gun is perfect...tight tight TIGHT mechanically, rich blue, there is one small ding on the bbl and an even smaller spot of feckling on the trigger guard. Its a very nice piece of family history to have and shoot. And, wow...does it shoot.

    I just picked up a Model 15 (4" bbl) with which I'm going to qualify to carry as an off-duty/BUG. I think I'll haul the Model 14 out and qualify with it as well...just to be able to say that it saw two generations of police service.

  9. Josey

    Josey member

    Hey Do qualify and let that Model 14 see 2 generations. I carried my grandfathers Model 1902 32-20 and my dads Model 1905 38 Special on my hip. I carried my uncles Model 36 38 Special also. I carried a Trooper MKIII in nickel until I had to carry a S&W auto in 9MM. I then finished m career with an agency that allowed 1911s in 45 ACP. I am currently collecting old police firearms and leather.

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