SOLD FOR: $1004.99
Model: Detective Special
Serial Number: P58139
Year of Manufacture: 1982 (COLT Serial Number Database)
Caliber: .38 Special
Action Type: DA/SA Double and Single Action 6-Shot Revolver with Swing-Out Cylinder
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “DETECTIVE SPEC. / .38 SPECIAL CTG.”, the right is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. / HARTFORD, CONN. U.S.A.” The side plate has the Rampant Colt logo, the left of the trigger guard is marked with “VP” in triangle at the front, and the rear is marked with “V”. The crane and cut are marked with the serial number, “P58139”. The cut is also marked “Q”. The bottom of the grip is marked “PRESENTATION/COMPAC / MADE IN U.S.A-BY PACHMAYR® / U.S. PAT. NO. 3,672,084”.
Barrel Length: 2 1/8”
Sights/Optics: The front sight is a barrel length ramped blade integral to the barrel. The rear sight is a square notch in a square channel on top of the frame. The edges of the rear sight channel are serrated for glare reduction.
Stock Configuration and Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered black rubber panels with a left side thumb rest. Each panel has an inset gold Rampant Colt medallion. There are light handling marks mainly in the smooth areas, but otherwise the grips are free of any notable wear or damage. There are no rips or tears and the checkering is well-defined. Overall, the grips rate in Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blue with a Nickel Plated Barrel
Finish Originality: Blued parts are Original, the cylinder is refinished.
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright and the rifling is well-defined. There is no apparent erosion, but there is light-to-moderate stubborn fouling in several spots.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 97% of its metal finish. The barrel and frame have only light handling marks. The nickel cylinder has scattered minor nicks and scuffs as well as a faint turn-line. The screw heads are sharp. The markings are clear. Overall, this handgun rates in Fine-plus condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The cylinder produces solid full lockup on all six chambers. The double action trigger pull is smooth and breaks cleanly. The single action pull is light and crisp. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box, Paperwork, and Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: The Colt Detective Special was basically the same revolver as the Police Positive Special, except it was limited to a 2” barrel with only a few made in 3”. The Colt Detective Special and its aluminum framed cousin, the Colt Cobra, were very popular with police detectives because they held 6 cartridges vs. the 5 cartridges of the S&W Model 36. The Detective Special had a long production run, from 1927 to 1995, a testament to its popularity. This example is late-era, from 1982. The revolver is chambered in .38 Special with a 2 1/8” barrel. The revolver is in Fine-plus condition, retaining nearly all of its finish and showing little sign of use beyond the fouling in the bore. The nickel cylinder is not an unwelcome aestehtic choice. It will make a nice addition to a revolver collection and should still make for a good carry revolver even today. Please see our photos and good luck!