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Ante omnia armari

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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Entry for August 16, 2008

One of the oldest guns I own is a first generation Colt Frontier Six Shooter. According to a Colt-archive letter of verification, it left the factory in the year 1881, making it now 127 years-old. My revolver is not as nice as the one in the photo, but has the same configuration of wooden grips, 7 ½-inch barrel, and caliber of .44-40 (AKA 44 WCF or Winchester Center Fire).

As a collector’s piece, the value of mine is at the low end of the price wars since, even though all of the part-numbers match, it was refinished at least once and the barrel etching for “Frontier Six Shooter” is very hard to make out. The gun makes a nice knockabout shooter or a very good candidate for a proper (and very expensive) restoration by a true expert.

Revolvers of this vintage were designed to shoot cartridges loaded with black powder, which generates much less pressure than modern smokeless gunpowders. Shooting smokeless loads in this revolver most likely would cause irreparable damage to the gun and possible grievous injury to the shooter. I do have several hundred rounds of cartridges loaded with modern black powder substitutes that would be safe and very effective to shoot in this gun.

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