SOLD FOR: $2575
Model: Single Action Army, 1st Generation
Serial Number: 179965
Year of Manufacture: 1898 (https://www.colt.com/serial-lookup)
Caliber: .45 Colt
Action Type: Single Action Revolver with Side Loading Gate Cylinder
Barrel Length: 4 3/4”
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a blade fixed to the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a “V”-notch at the rear of a groove in the top strap.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece stag panels. The grips have minor handling wear. There is some slightly rough fitting at the top-front on each panel and a few light marks. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in Fine condition as not original to the gun.
Type of Finish: Blue
Finish Originality: Refinished. The backstrap is not original to the gun. The cylinder pin retainer assembly has a non-factory spring and does not function properly. Some other parts may have been replaced.
Bore Condition: The bore is dark gray. The rifling is worn, but visible. There is light-moderate erosion scattered throughout the bore with some light pitting. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 3 or 4 out of 10.
Most antique firearms have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the use of black powder. When fired, black powder reacts corrosively. NRA Antique Firearm Conditions Standards are quite lenient for bores. In some cases the NRA standards disregarded the bore’s condition for collectors firearms.
Overall Condition: This revolver retains about 65% of its current metal finish. There is handling wear in the grip areas with scattered finish wear on the cylinder and the right of the frame. Most of the ejector housing has been polished bright and there is scattered surface erosion on the barrel. Some of the finish loss appears chemical in nature, most notable a void in the finish in the top of the backstrap. There are some spots of minor erosion under the finish. There are scattered light nicks and scratches. The action shows operational wear. The markings range from clear to worn and incomplete. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. Overall, this revolver is in Good-Very Good condition as refinished Antique.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly however, as noted above, the cylinder pin retainer assembly has a non-factory spring and is not functioning properly. Lockup produces light play on all six chambers. The trigger is crisp. The cylinder has a removable bushing. 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: Colt’s Single Action Army is, perhaps more than any other, an iconic American pistol. It was the U.S. issue sidearm for the last two decades of the 19th century, used by pioneers, outlaws and lawmen across the expanding nation, and captivated audiences on the silver screen and television. Produced for nearly a century and a half, they are still being made, today!
This example is a 1st Generation Single Action Army made in 1898. It is in Good-Very Good condition as refinished Antique, with a set of stag grip panels giving it a distinctive appearance. Any 1st Generation SAA would make a great addition to a Colt collection, and this late 19th Century example should be no exception. It will display well as-is with its “been there, done that” appearance but would also be a good candidate for restoration. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud