SOLD FOR: $3025
Model: Single Action Army, 1st Generation
Serial Number: 308552
Year of Manufacture: 1909 (https://www.colt.com/serial-lookup)
Caliber: .38 W.C.F. (38-40 Winchester Center Fire)
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 side is marked “38 W.C.F.”. The left of the frame is marked “PAT SEPT 19 1871. / JULY 2. 72 JAN. 19. 75.” and with a circled rampant colt logo. The bottom of the frame and the bottom of the trigger guard at the front are each marked “308552”. The butt of the grip frame is marked “308 / 552″. The rear of the loading gate has assembly number “3058”. The left of the trigger guard is marked “VP” in triangle and “6”. The inside of each grip panel has “8552” hand-scribed.
Barrel Length: 7 1/2”
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 checkered black hard rubber with rampant colt in oval at their tops. The grips have some light nicks and scratches, mostly on the bottom. The checkering is well defined and there is good detail in the rampant colts. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in Very Good-Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is light gray with well defined rifling. There is scattered light erosion in the bore. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates about 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.
Overall Condition: This revolver retains about 60% of its metal finish. The finish is thinning at all edges. The grip areas are mostly worn to white. There is finish wear along the ejector housing and along the left of the barrel. The frame’s case color has mostly muted with some strong color in well protected areas. The hammer has generally strong case color. Some worn areas are going to a light patina. There are scattered light nicks, scuffs and scratches. The action shows operational wear including a turn-line on the cylinder. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots and there are tool marks around most screw heads. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in Good-Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The mainspring has had a slot cut in the center (lightening tension). Lockup produces light play and very minor end-shake 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 (and still does, today). 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 1909. The revolver is chambered for the classic .38-40 Winchester cartridge, which would make it a nice companion for a lever action carbine chambered for the same round. It is in Good-Very Good condition, retaining the majority of its original metal finish, a decent bore and strong mechanics. Any 1st Generation SAA would make a great addition to a Colt collection, and this early 20th Century example should be no exception. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud