SOLD FOR: $5712.99
Model: Single Action Army 2nd Generation
Serial Number: 26311SA
Year of Manufacture: 1959 (https://www.colt.com/serial-lookup)
Caliber: .45 Colt
Action Type: Single Action Revolver with Side Loading Gate Cylinder
Markings: The top of the barrel is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. Co. HARTFORD CT. U.S.A.”, the left is marked “COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY .45”. The left of the frame is marked “PAT. SEPT 19. 1871 / JULY 2, 72 JAN. 19, 75” and with a rampant colt logo. The left of the trigger guard is marked “VP” in triangle at the front and “P” at the rear, the right is marked “5”. The bottom of the frame and the left of each portion of the trigger guard are each marked “26311SA”. The rear face of the cylinder is marked with a rampant colt, the front face of the cylinder is marked “311”. The revolver has extensive engraving with scroll motif, borders and punch-dot matting in the negative spaces. TThere are scattered relief-engraved cattle brands on the barrel, frame, cylinder and grip frame. The engraving is not signed, but we have seen a previous example which nearly matches from engraver John Adams Sr.
Barrel Length: 5 1/2″
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a quarter-round blade fixed to the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a square notch at the rear of a groove in the top strap.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece bone panels with a carved American Eagle on the right panel. The grips have no notable wear or damage, only light handling marks. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in Excellent condition.
Type of Finish: Nickel
Finish Originality: Original to Engraving
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright and the rifling is sharp. There are scattered patches of erosion in the bore toward the muzzle-end. In this writer’s opinion, this bore rates a 7 out of 10.
Many military and C&R eligible weapons have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the fact that corrosive primers were commonly used in ammunition worldwide. For example, the U.S. used corrosive ammunition throughout WWII. The U.S. military did not begin to phase out corrosive-primed ammunition until the 1950’s.
Overall Condition: This revolver retains about 98% of its current metal finish. There is are some scattered minor marks, but no notable damage. The screw heads range from sharp to lightly tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in Fine condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. Lockup produces almost no play on all six chambers. The trigger is crisp. The cylinder’s bushing is removable. We did not fire this revolver. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: The Colt Single Action Army is perhaps the quintessential old west handgun, produced for more than a century, serving the U.S. Army as its sidearm from 1873 into the first world war and captivating audiences on the silver screen. The SAA was discontinued by Colt as it tooled up to provide for the WWII war effort, and it was thought by Colt that the design was obsolete, swing-out cylinder revolvers had been around for half a century and autoloaders were gaining in popularity. Then, with the advent of television and western programs such as Hopalong Cassidy, The Lone Ranger, The Cisco Kid, and The Gene Autry Show, American interest in the guns that won the west was reborn.
This example is from the 2nd Generation of Single Action Army revolvers and has been extensively engraved with a variety of American cattle brands. A previous auction for a different revolver with the same engraving pattern identified the gun as being from John Adams, though this example is not signed. In any case, it is a very attractive example of the Single Action Army and will add to any collection. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud