SOLD FOR: $12,525.00
Model: 1905/07, 1907 Trials Contract Pistol
Serial Number: 54
Year of Manufacture: 1907
Caliber: .45 Rimless Smokeless (.45 ACP)
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto Pistol with Removable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “PATENTED / APR.20.1897 SEPT.9.1902 DEC.19.1905”, “COLT’S PATENT FIRE AR?? ???? CO. / HARTFORD, CONN. U.S.A.”. The left side of the frame is marked “54” above the trigger guard and “K.M.” on the top-front of the trigger guard. The right side of the slide is marked “AUTOMATIC COLT / CALIBRE 45 RIMLESS SMOKELESS”. There is an odd mark on the right at the front of the frame rail. The inside of the grips are carved, the left panel with “B. C. CARR / ?????? 1924” and the right with “Mico City / Ma? 3 19?”, please see photos.
Barrel Length: 5”
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a thin rounded blade fixed to the top of the slide. The rear sight is a “U” notch dovetailed into the top rear of the slide.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are checkered walnut with smooth diamond patterns around the grip screws. The left panel has moderate handling wear with heavier wear on the right panel. There is some marring on the right panel in the center and both have scattered light compressions, nicks and dings. The left panel has a crack at the bottom of the bottom grip screw escutcheon down to the bottom edge. There are no chips. Overall, the grips are in about Good-plus condition.
Type of Finish: Blued, some small parts are Fire-Blued, the hammer appears to be Case-Colored. The firing pin has a bronze coloring.
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright with shallow rifling, sharp where not interrupted by erosion. There is light erosion scattered through the bore, some may prove to be stubborn fouling.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 15% of its metal finish. There is light surface oxidation scattered throughout with the frame showing infrequent spots of pinprick erosion and the slide having more extensive light surface erosion scattered throughout, mostly on the flats. Most remaining blue finish is on the top of the slide forward of the ejection port and the flats of the frame. The bottom of the dust cover, front and back straps have developed a light-moderate patina. There are some scattered light scratches and scrapes, most notable on the left of the slide just forward and below the loaded chamber indicator arm and there are infrequent light nicks and dings. The trigger and grip safety have some fire-blue showing with light operational wear and some light surface oxidation. The hammer similarly shows some oxidation and wear, but some figuring of the case-color can be seen. The slide wedge is worn to white on both ends but shows some fire-blue on the inside and its indexing nub is intact. The screw heads are lightly tool marked with strong slots. The pin heads are generally unmarred, a couple show light tool marks but are not peened. The frame markings and those on the right of the slide are clear. The left-side slide markings are worn, shallow and with some characters incomplete or worn away entirely. Overall, this handgun rates in about Good-Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The slide has very little play to the frame. The trigger is crisp. This pistol has a tanged grip safety, typical of the 2nd Variation 1907s. The magazine release is on the bottom of the butt. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This pistol comes with one blued seven round magazine. The magazine has light operational wear and some scattered light surface oxidation in its otherwise strong finish. The feed lips are intact and the spring is strong. The magazine is in about Very Good-plus condition.
Our Assessment: The Ordnance Department of the U.S. Army convened a board of two men, Capt. John t. Thompson and Maj. Louis A. La Garde to determine a minimum handgun caliber for use by the U.S. Military in 1903. In 1904, a month before the report was released, Union Metallic Cartridge Company (U.M.C.) received figures for the proposed cartridges. UMC began work on cartridges, and shortly thereafter Colt set to work experimenting on a .45 caliber pistol based on their 1902 Military model. U.M.C. came up with a rimless .45 cartridge that they were producing by April 1905. Meanwhile, Colt had John M. Browning try to figure out how to handle the stresses caused by higher powered cartridges using the M1902 pistol as a baseline. By May 1905, Browning had applied for a patent covering a new barrel design with locking lugs on the bottom to lock it to the frame. In 1907, Army tests began on guns from 8 different manufacturers, which was narrowed down to Colt’s Model 1905 and pistols from Savage and Luger. Changes were requested, and Colt came up with a prototype of the new Model 1907 by Sept.1907. Only about 207 of this new model were made, making them some of the most desired collector guns in the world. This is one of those 207, sent to Troop K, 10th U.S. Calvary, Fot William McKinley, Rizal, Philippine Islands in March 1908 for testing. The tests were not quite successful and the Army requested further modifications. The 2nd Variation had a spurred grip safety, to allow for single-hand de-cocking, a thinner hammer spur and a slightly widened ejection port. While the 1907 was not ultimately adopted, further modifications resulted in the Model 1911, which was adopted by the Army and continued in service until the 1980s! With only 207 made, this is one of the rarest Colt pistols and it is one which has been used in military trials by the United States, in the Philippines no less! The pistol has its original finish and, despite what the tests concluded, appears to have quite strong mechanics for a 112 year old pistol which has been through an ordnance trial. We expect the collectors of Colt autos are going to be very interested in this pistol.
CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable: This C&R eligible pistol CAN be transferred as a dealer sale in California and CAN be sold as a Private Party Transfer (PPT) at our Simi Valley shop. All cartridge firing handguns (even C&R’s and antiques) sold to a California resident must be DROS’d. This does not apply to out of state residents.