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Colt Paterson, Third Generation?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Crawdad1, Nov 23, 2017.

  1. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    Another engraved Colt Paterson at $2,000.00 with 2 days left to go. This is the fourth one I've seen within the last year up over the 2 grand mark. The seller doesn't think it is a Third Generation Signature Series Colt but how can it not be?

    Any ideas?
     
  2. LonesomePigeon

    LonesomePigeon Member

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    http://www.gunbroker.com/item/719859731

    "this is not a so-called 3rd generation as they did not produce the Paterson in the 2nd generation Colts"

    The seller's sentence doesn't make sense, to paraphrase: 'it's not a 3rd Gen because they didn't make any 2nd Gen Paterson's'. That simply doesn't make sense. I think he means it's not a 2nd Gen. The 3rd Gen(aka Signature Series) Paterson did not have the "Samuel Colt" signature on the backstrap that all other 3rd Gens had. This might cause some people to think it's a 2nd Gen but that is not the case. I think the seller was just trying to be honest but made a typo. The sentence should read: "this is a so-called 3rd generation as they did not produce the Paterson in the 2nd generation Colts".
     
  3. whughett

    whughett Member

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    Generation? As in production runs, serial number sequences, model variances, ??????? Not sure what the term applies to.
     
  4. daboyleroy

    daboyleroy Member

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    FIRST: Colt says there is no such thing as a 4th Generation..That is a creative status created by Collectors.

    First Generations run from S/N 1 to 357859. In that are Early, Intermediate Black Powder and Early, Intermediate Smokeless versions.

    Second Generations, or what is referred to as Post War Guns start at 0001SA to 73319SA

    Third Generations start at 80000SA to Current Production.

    The Blue Book of Gun Values, though not the BIBLE to Colt SAA will give the Basic Information to the new collector. There are many other publications that will describe and define the changes and nuances of All the Revolvers including the knurling used on the hammers. Much to exhaustive to do the work here.

    Add to the mix, all the Special, Limited and Commemoratives and you will have a library of information.
     
  5. Mizar

    Mizar Member

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    And what does that info, regarding Colt SAA, has to do with Patersons? Just asking for a friend...
    P.S.
    ?!?
     
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  6. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    Even the unengraved Patersons didn't have the Samuel Colt signature on the backstrap, Lonesome, Daboyleroy?

    Or were they all engraved?

    The Colt Sig Series Patersons are the most expensive revolvers I've seen with the cheapest I've seen selling on Auction Arms for a little over $1,900.00. And that was 2 or 3 years ago.
     
  7. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    But that is one beautiful revolver!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
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  8. daboyleroy

    daboyleroy Member

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  9. forward observer

    forward observer Member

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    With all due respect, 2nd and 3rd generation black powder Colts have nothing to do with the 2nd and 3rd gen Colt SAA's. To get the skinny on the Blackpowder lines, one would need either the blackpowder Blue book (I have the on-line subscribed version) or Dennis Russell's " Colt percussion revolvers--The 2nd generation-- Collector's handbook and Price guide" Russell also covers the 3rd gens in his book. There is also limited info on both generations in "Black Powder Revolvers--Reproduction and Replicas" by Dennis Adler which I believe is out of print.


    What is now called the 2nd generation of Colt black powder or percussion revolvers were produced from 1971 to 1982. There were 11 standard models with 3 of those being also produced in stainless steel. There were also a few minor variations plus several commemoratives, special limited runs plus special order and short runs of engraved models. Colt did not include the Paterson in this series. The serial numbers for all of these 2nd gens, generally started off where Colt ended production or the originals in the 19th century. The special runs and commemoratives are the exceptions---having their own sets of numbers. The first two models-the 1851 Navy and the 3rd model Dragoon were assembled at the Hartford plant and are the C series. When Colt decided to expand the line to include other models, all production was moved to Iver Johnson
    as a sub-contractor to Colt. Iver Johnson was owned by Lou Imperato at the time. Lou had been one of Colt biggest distributors and had also been responsible for procuring some of the parts for the black powder line from Uberti. The barrels, cylinders, loading levers, trigger guard, and back strap were manufactured to Colt's specifications by Uberti and shipped in the white to the US. The frames, small internals, screws, springs,
    American walnut grips, etc were manufactured or sourced in the US. All of the Iver Johnson production was returned to Hartford for inspection,
    cataloging, and distribution.

    The 3rd gen black powder Colts or "Signature series" were produced from 1994 to 2002 under license to the very same Louis Imperato who had formed a new company called "Colt Blackpowder Arms Co". This company only existed under the license agreement and was not part of
    Colt Manufacturing Company, LLC. Lou even used some of the same craftsmen to work on the 3rd gens. However, for this line his company was responsible for both marketing, inspection, distribution, and warranty service. The 3rd gens were distinguished from the 2nd gen by the addition of the stamped facsimile Sam'l Colt signature on the back strap.

    They led off with the Paterson and since there never had been a 2nd gen reproduction of that model, they omitted the stamped signature.
    These were quite expensive. The plain model retailed at an MSRP of $1200 while the engraved initially was $2995. Thus the Paterson
    is usually associated with the 3rd gen line even though there was no 2nd gen version of it. In effect it really is a 2nd gen but I don't think anybody really cares that much.

    There were other variations in the 3rd gen line that were not included in the 2nd gens. Most notable was that they included an 1849 pocket
    which was essentially the baby Dragoon with a loading lever. However the original 1849 outsold any other single 1st gen percussion model that Colt made--including the popular 1851 Navy.

    There are some hard core Colt collectors who do not consider either the 2nd or 3rd gen Colts as real Colts since they had some Italian parts.
    Then there is another even larger set of collectors who do consider the 2nd gen Colt percussion's real Colts, but not the 3rd gens versions.
    A respected publication such as the Blue Book series categorizes both as real Colts

    Those who do not think the 3rd gen percussion's are real Colt mention that the 2nd were produced by a sub contractor while the 3rd gens were produced by an independent company under license, but they add that the real litmus test is that Colt firearms will letter the 2nd gens while they will not letter the 3rd gens.

    (To those unfamiliar with the term "letter" it means that for a fee, you can provide the serial number of your Colt firearm to
    the Colt records department and if they have it on file they will provide you with an official factory letter with as much pertinent info as they have on your particular firearm--such as date of production, where or who it shipped to, and any special features if it was a custom order. You see these letters included all the time in the high price collector's market for antique models and they can add to the value.)

    Colt Blackpowder Arms Co was responsible for maintaining all the serial number records under the license agreement. For whatever reason when they shut down or were forced to shut down because Colt withdrew the license---all of those records were claimed to have been lost and thus were never provided to Colt. I'm sure there was some animosity involved in the shutdown as there was when the 2nd gens were discontinued, so the lost records story sounds a bit suspect to me.

    Regardless, without those records, Colt has no way to letter the 3rd gens and whether they would or not will remain an unanswered question. It also means that no one knows how many of any of 3rd gen models were produced. This also holds true for the Paterson models produced by Imperato's company.

    Personally, I consider the 3rd gens as much a Colt as the 2nd gens and from the pricing I see, so does the marketplace. In my opinion--when Colt licensed Imperato to legally stamp Colt's trademark name and markings on a reproduction on a product that they are specifically known for and associated with ,they made it a real Colt. Once again though, that's just my opinion.

    Cheers

    P.S. Here's the complete line of standard model 2nd gens that I have collected. I did not attempt to collect the stainless steel models since they did not exist originally--plus there are only 8 each of the 1861 Navy in existence. The last two that sold went for $20k and $24k respectively in a Rock Island auction. This does not include the 18% buyer's premium. I can't see spending that much money on a reproduction.

    Starting at center: The Walker, then top center the Pocket Police, going clockwise, the 1st, 2nd, 3rd model Dragoon, then the 1851 Navy, bottom center: Baby Dragoon, continuing clockwise: the Pocket Navy, 1861 Navy, 1860 Army, and 1860 Army with fluted cylinder

    wLEqOnG.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017
  10. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    I love those Second and Third generation Colts. I've had seven of them and all the ones that I've had are the definition of the word tight. When you pull the hammer back that cylinder is locked, I mean locked, in place. Granted only having seven isn't much of a representative of the total number that were built but the ones I've had were all quality.

    He's buying a quality piece, in my opinion.
     
  11. whughett

    whughett Member

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    Thank you forward observer , that's an informative post.
     
  12. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    So do I. I completely agree with your opinion. :)
     
  13. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    forward observer

    An absolutely superb collection of Colt 2nd. Gen. black powder revolvers! Great job of filling in the background history of the 2nd. and 3rd. Generations as well!
     
  14. Fingers McGee

    Fingers McGee Member

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    DSCN0157.JPG

    Here are some more 2nd Gens. Each is a 1of 500 cased set
     
  15. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    Fingers, the grips on that 1860 are they factory?
     
  16. Fingers McGee

    Fingers McGee Member

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    I don't know. They were on it when I got it. Also have the walnut grips for it. I am at least the third owner of it. I purchased it from a gun dealer that was selling an estate - at least that's what the story was.
     
  17. Gaucho Gringo

    Gaucho Gringo Member

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    What do they say to the 1100 Colt Walkers? They weren't built in a Colt factory or used Colt parts because there was no Colt factory at the time. They were all built at Eli Whitney's factory to Colt specifications. and even after he established his Hartford plant he still suibcontracted out for parts. I say these collectors are a bunch of snobs and full of hot air.
     
  18. forward observer

    forward observer Member

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    Colt will not letter the Walkers nor any of the Paterson's produced by Samuel Colt's first gun making enterprise. The simple reason being they do not have the factory records for these---just like they don't have those from the Colt Blackpower Arms company.

    Colt also will not letter huge numbers (about 200k) of many Colt percussion revolvers produced prior to 1864. Those records were evidently lost when the entire East Armory of the Colt factory burned to the ground in that same year.

    Cheers
     
  19. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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  20. forward observer

    forward observer Member

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    That set was sold by an organization named the US Historical Society starting in 1988. It was a limited run of 1000 units priced originally at $2500. I am relatively certain that Uberti made the pistol while the authentic accessories were manufactured by a company in England. There's a drawer in the case that contains a book by Philip R. Phillips and R.L. Wilson titled "Paterson Colt Pistol Variations". It's one of the nicest cased Paterson sets out there.

    Coincidentally, I didn't realize this at first, but I met the guy selling these Patersons and 2nd gen Colt percussions on GB.com at the Wannenmacher gun show in Tulsa back in early November. In fact I bought a repro Pedersoli flintlock dueler from him. He had a table with more 2nd gen Colts than I've seen in quite a while at any gun show. We got to talking and he mentioned that he had several Paterson reproductions he was going to sell, but he didn't bring any of them to the show. I just found his business card for Ozarkhill Fine Firearms. I kept it because it had a Colt 2nd gen black powder lapel pin attached. His real name is Bill Eads and his card says he specializes in 2nd gen Colts and other Colt clones,

    He said that he got into these because even though they sell at a premium over standard Italian made repro's they are still less than originals. He was also quite knowledgeable about the Colt 2nd and 3rd gen stuff.

    I just recently purchased two of he US Historical Society's early releases for a song. When they started out their releases were unique in that unlike other commemorative type issues, their items were historical recreations of originals with no inauthentic markings or decorations. However, due to this they were quite expensive. They eventually got absorbed by "America Remembers" who now makes the typical pimped up tasteless gold decorated crap issues celebrating stuff like Merle Haggard's last colonoscopy.

    I'll probably post a separate thread about those.

    Cheers
     
  21. Ephraim Kibbey

    Ephraim Kibbey Member

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    Forward Observer is correct that it was made by Uberti.

    Look closely under the barrel, hidden by the lever and you see their "U" in the muzzle logo:

    upload_2017-12-11_18-45-34.png

    The shot above is from the following cased set:

    upload_2017-12-11_18-46-55.png

    upload_2017-12-11_18-47-30.png

    Forward Observer, I can't wait to read about "Merle Haggard's last colonoscopy."
     
  22. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Member

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    I see it. Those Colt Patersons whether repros or reissues are bringing in some big money as far as black powder revolvers go as in the past few years I haven't seem one sell for under $2,000.00.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017 at 7:37 PM
  23. forward observer

    forward observer Member

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    LOL! Unfortunately the Merle Haggard release is sold out, but this one commemorating Conway Twitty's first prostate exam can by yours for only $1995

    Conway-Twitty-Full-Left.jpg




    :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017 at 4:05 AM
  24. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Member

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    Ah, no thanks.... I like my plain Jane Remmie R1 1911. Them Goldie curlicules don't do nutin' Fer me.......
     

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