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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a Colt SAA 1873, .45 cal. 7-1/2 barrel with serial number in 3 digit range (6XX). I dont know the history of this revolver, and how and when was arrived in Italy. The handgun is in very good conditions and is without any doubt a military item (US property). Where can I find more notices about?
 

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I have a Colt SAA 1873, .45 cal. 7-1/2 barrel with serial number in 3 digit range (6XX). I dont know the history of this revolver, and how and when was arrived in Italy. The handgun is in very good conditions and is without any doubt a military item (US property). Where can I find more notices about?
You probably can't and won't find out anything more than you already know. It was, from the serial number data I have, made in 1874 (1-200 in 1873; 201-14,999 in 1874). When and how it left military service - not going to find records. BARELY possible one of the lists of guns known to have been in some units MIGHT reveal which unit had it early on, but usually don't find that as we (US military) didn't systematically record it and maintain the lists.
 

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thanks Clyde, I was not sure if the year was 73 or 74.
You are welcome. Candidly - I am NOT certain the answer is in fact correct. Those are the published numbers, in any number of sources, including three I have. BUT, I am NOT certain that the Colt archives would actually confirm that if you asked (at the cost of several hundred dollars) for a factory letter. The reason I say that is that almost all of the currently published sources (and all three of the ones i happen to have) follow R.L. Wilson, and - well, there is reason to be uncertain about how accurately he recorded things and how often he may have simply made things up. However, those are the currently accepted dates of manufacture.

You could get a factory letter and it would give you a date and to whom the gun was shipped (does it have military acceptance marks?), and i believe the early 1873 data is available. But - the letters are expensive - i think currently two or three hundred dollars for SAA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
yes, is a Marble front sight, but the worst thing I discovered is that the cylinder is no.17XXX. This gun was in the collection of my brother in law, now deceased, and I don't knew his existence until past yesterday. Welcome in the real world!
 

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That 17xxx cylinder would have been been produced in 1875, and was more than likely switched during service. 1875 was the first year chamberings other than .45 Colt were produced (.44 Rim-fire and .450 Boxer), and barrel lengths (4-3/4, 5-1/2 inch) other than the 7.5" of the service guns interoduced.
 

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the photo color is not true. The real color is a dark grey, (not so dark).
You will have, i hope, noted the conditional "may". i couldn't tell, so....

Do the grips still show inspection cartouche?

In any case, about the best i can suggest in "low four figures", and that is something of a WAG. It remains a very nice gun IMO, but alterations and (apparent from the photos)overall condition reduce a possible five-figure value to somewhere in the lower four-figure range. BUT - haven't actually seen or handled it and that makes a difference. Repeat - something of a WAG.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
thanks Clyde. I would like buy the Colt from my nephew at honest price for my american western guns collection. I saw in some gun auction a very impressive valuation for the oldest SAA. The italian market is now less expensive for western guns, after a crazy season in the "spaghetti western" age, and I am searching only for an "idea" about is value. Conditions are better than the bad photo show, gun has not rust or damage, and the only thing I noted was malfunction of the hammer mid-way click, but I hope that is only because of old hard grease inside. Sorry for my bad english! :)
 

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thanks Clyde. I would like buy the Colt from my nephew at honest price for my american western guns collection. I saw in some gun auction a very impressive valuation for the oldest SAA. The italian market is now less expensive for western guns, after a crazy season in the "spaghetti western" age, and I am searching only for an "idea" about is value. Conditions are better than the bad photo show, gun has not rust or damage, and the only thing I noted was malfunction of the hammer mid-way click, but I hope that is only because of old hard grease inside. Sorry for my bad english! :)
Your English is fine. Help me with my geography - I see you are in Italy, but what part, that is where on the peninsula (I know I could Google, but am too lazy to open another window right now)...
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
https://maps.google.it/?ll=42.003375...00862&t=h&z=20

I live in Rome, but in a lone house with all my family, wife, two sons, one with his wife and my nephew, a 2 year and eight months little girl, two dogs, a number of cats, three horses, some chicken, three friends, and a romanian helper. My collection is in my old house in Terni except three or four loaded handguns, a Gew.43 ready to fire and a cal.12 Breda auto. Thats the first time I see the new Google maps and may be the one who appears in the swimming pool is me. :) Any night a good number of boars come visit us, but we are in a Park zone and they are safe. Is hard the life in the old far Italy!​
 

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I have one with serial number 150XX and a letter from Colt showing it shipped to Denver, CO on December 14, 1874.

You are welcome. Candidly - I am NOT certain the answer is in fact correct. Those are the published numbers, in any number of sources, including three I have. BUT, I am NOT certain that the Colt archives would actually confirm that if you asked (at the cost of several hundred dollars) for a factory letter. The reason I say that is that almost all of the currently published sources (and all three of the ones i happen to have) follow R.L. Wilson, and - well, there is reason to be uncertain about how accurately he recorded things and how often he may have simply made things up. However, those are the currently accepted dates of manufacture.

You could get a factory letter and it would give you a date and to whom the gun was shipped (does it have military acceptance marks?), and i believe the early 1873 data is available. But - the letters are expensive - i think currently two or three hundred dollars for SAA.
 

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I have one with serial number 150XX and a letter from Colt showing it shipped to Denver, CO on December 14, 1874.
Which confirms my suspicion of Wilson - not least because of his propensity for having each year start with an even number. I know enough about production scheduling and performance to know that is - suspicious. Still, a number in the 17K range would seem to be pretty probably in 1875 instead of 1874, since we know that one under 15099 shipped in mid-December, 1874.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
many thanks to everybody! I like old american guns and I have in my collection 3 Winchester lever action (73,92,94) a 1910 cal .401 WSL, a Marlin 1894, a 1849 Colt pocket and a Remington Hepburn no.3 cal .38-55. I have also some italian replicas as Uberti Cattleman 38/40, Pietta mod.1851 cal. 44.
i am searching for Winchester 86 and 95 but this will be an hard fight because are very expensive.
Clyde, I hope my answer helped your knowledge of my country! :) Thanks again!
 

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many thanks to everybody! I like old american guns and I have in my collection 3 Winchester lever action (73,92,94) a 1910 cal .401 WSL, a Marlin 1894, a 1849 Colt pocket and a Remington Hepburn no.3 cal .38-55. I have also some italian replicas as Uberti Cattleman 38/40, Pietta mod.1851 cal. 44.
i am searching for Winchester 86 and 95 but this will be an hard fight because are very expensive.
Clyde, I hope my answer helped your knowledge of my country! :) Thanks again!
Actually, I guess i wasn't really clear - couldn't recall what part of modern Italy Etruria covered, and since you said you were in Etruria...

Winchester 1886/86 and 1895 (at least if in high condition) aren't cheap here. Explaining why i don't own one.
 
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