Sold For: $1,226.00
Model: Detective Special
Serial Number: P42990
Year of Manufacture: 1982 (COLT Serial Number Lookup)
Caliber: .38 Special
Action Type: 6-Shot DA/SA Double Action Revolver with Swing Out Cylinder
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “DETECTIVE SPEC. / .38 SPECIAL CTG.”. The right side of the barrel is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. / HARTFORD CONN. U.S.A.”. The side plate is marked with a rampant colt. The crane flat is marked with serial number, “P42990” and “N”. The crane is marked with the serial number, “P42990”. The left front of the trigger guard is marked with a “VP” in a triangle, the rear is marked “V”.
Barrel Length: 2”
Sights/Optics: The front sight is a ramped blade running the length of the barrel that is integral to it. The rear sight is a square-notch integral to the topstrap. There is a groove along the length of the topstrap with serrated edges for glare reduction.
Stock Configuration and Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered walnut which swell slightly toward the top of each panel. The grips have no notable wear or damage, only light handling marks. The checkering is sharp. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in Excellent condition.
Type of Finish: Nickel
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is bright with sharp rifling. There is no erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This revolver retains about 96% of its metal finish. There are some spots of cloudiness in the finish, mostly around the edges of the grips. There are a few minor nicks, scuffs and some swirling. The cylinder has minor turn-wear. The screw heads are sharp. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver rates in Fine condition.
Mechanics: The action function correctly. The double action is smooth and the single action is crisp. The cylinder locks up with no play on each chamber when the trigger is depressed. We did not fire this revolver. As with all previously owned firearms, thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork, and Accessories: This revolver comes in a faux-wood cardboard Colt box with serial-matching label (the label does not appear to be genuine), two-piece styrofoam inserts and an assortment of factory paperwork including manual.
Our Assessment: The Detective Special has been very popular with law enforcement and civilians who carried a concealed revolver as it allowed for a 6-shot revolver in the same frame size as other revolvers which only offered a 5-round capacity. This example is a 3rd Issue made in 1982 with a shrouded ejector rod in Fine condition with minor wear consistent with infrequent carry and use. While this Detective Special would still make a great carry revolver, it would also make a neat piece for a Colt collector, especially with its attractive nickel finish. Please see our photos and good luck!