Colt Frontier Six Shooter SAA .44-40 Single Action Revolver, 1880 Antique

SOLD FOR: $3900

LSB#: 230914LM039

Make: Colt

Model: Frontier Six Shooter

Serial Number: 58132

Year of Manufacture: 1880 (

Caliber: .44-40 Winchester (WCF)

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 of the barrel has an etched panel marked “COLT. FRONTIER SIX SHOOTER”. Under the ejector housing at the rear the barrel is marked “8132”. The left of the frame is marked “PAT. SEPT 19. 1871. / JULY 2 -72. / JAN 19 -75.”. The bottom of the frame is marked “58132” in front of the trigger guard, found again on the trigger guard and the butt of the backstrap. The rear face of the loading gate has assembly number “377”. The rear of the frame in the hammer slot is marked “P”. The left of the trigger guard is marked “44.C.F.”. The rear face of the cylinder is marked “A” and the outside is marked “8132”.

Barrel Length: 7 1/2”

Sights / Optics: The front sight is a rounded 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 grip is one-piece antique ivory. The grip shows discoloration and grain-lines. There is a repaired crack in the right across the screw escutcheon. There are some scattered nicks and scratches. Overall, the grip is in about Very Good condition as Antique.

Type of Finish: Blue & Case color

Finish Originality: Original

Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright. The rifling is sharp. There is scattered light erosion and infrequent minor pitting in the bore. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 7 or 8 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 0% of its metal finish. The surfaces have mostly worn to white or gone to a light patina. There is scattered minor surface erosion, more notable on the interior of the frame around the cylinder. There are some scattered light nicks and small scratches. The action shows light operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with usable slots. There are tool marks around some screw heads. The markings are generally clear, the etched panel shows some wear. Overall, this revolver is in Very Good condition as Antique.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. Lockup produces light play side-to-side and barely perceptible end-shake on all six chambers of the cylinder. 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 “Frontier Six Shooter” was the same design as the Single Action Army, but chambered for Winchester’s .44-40 cartridge. While it made good business sense to produce revolvers that used the same cartridge as Winchester’s rifles, Colt still did not want to advertise for Winchester in their pistol’s markings and a variety of clever means were found to identify the chamberings without explicitly noting that they were “Winchester” calibers.

This example, produced in 1880, is chambered for .44-40, as attested by the etched panel on the left of the barrel. This revolver shows its age, but retains a surprisingly strong bore and good mechanics. It will display well with its “been there, done that” appearance and is a nice example of an etched-panel Frontier Six Shooter to add to any collection. Please see our photos and good luck!

Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud

Colt Frontier Six Shooter SAA .44-40 Single Action Revolver, 1880 Antique
Colt Frontier Six Shooter SAA .44-40 Single Action Revolver, 1880 Antique