COLT ACP .38 RIMLESS SMOKELESS PISTOL

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by mjackson, Jun 9, 2010.

  1. saa

    saa New Member

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    I understand your premise, however, it only works because Ford does not restore cars, not has the department, facilities, or offers to do so.

    Colt does.

    That said, I'll have to do some more digging for some examples of Colt's restoration work. Turnbull's is evident.

    Thanks for the input, Alpo.
    saa.
  2. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Sorry, Lanrezac, that is not a Model 1900; as Mikebravo says, it is a Model 1902 Sporting Model. That is significant for a restoration, because the 1902 Sporting, while scarce, is more common and less valuable than the Model 1900, (approximately 7000 made, vs half that for the Model 1900). The difference in value may make restoration a less attractive option.

    Just a general note: These sites often discuss restoration of antique firearms, with some folks evidently believing that such a procedure will make the gun like new and worth as much as one in like new condition. In fact, no restorer, no matter how good, can actually make a gun like new. At best, the gun will look better; at worst, it will be grotesque, a shiny reblue over a ruined gun.

    While a sore subject for some, it also needs to be mentioned that no restoration will deceive a knowledgeable buyer; there are too many areas which will be glaring signs of restoration work to the experienced eye, though the gun might fool beginning collectors.

    Jim
  3. Lanrezac

    Lanrezac Active Member

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    Dang. I thought the difference between the 1900 and Sporting Model was only whether the gun was originally machined for the rear sight safety catch or not, and I could not tell that from the photo. I'm always learning I don't know as much as I thought I did!
  4. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Aren't we all!

    I was not aware that Colt did restoration work (as opposed to simply refinishing). I would like to see some of their work. I have seen a number of examples of S&W rebuild/refinish work and will say that it is darned good. That, of course, is why they mark refinished guns with a star or diamond to keep them from being passed off as new.

    Turnbull is good, but I have not seen any that I would have accepted as original. But then, if they were good enough, I wouldn't know, would I?

    Jim
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2012
  5. saa

    saa New Member

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    Jim, you make a good point here and I'll take the chance to expound on it a bit, from my perspective.

    Sometimes people hear the word restoration in the firearms field and their first inclination is to line up the dollar signs for all of the firearms they will find, have restored, and then unload onto unsuspecting buyers who are new or uneducated.

    This is foolhardy and simply fraud. Most people buying guns that would be worth spending any restoration money on, would be bought by collectors experienced enough to see the signs - as Jim makes good note of - and if you do find a newby to float one by on, your overall net on the project is not going to pan out to profits. And could cause you some trouble, depending on who you try to swindle.

    Educating your self on restoration, as I continue to do: who does it, how well, what methods, to what success, on what models, etc., will serve to allow you to be knowledable running across the myraid of marginally refurbished guns that you have to tramp through to get to the good ones. (the unrestored originals)

    An educated collector is nobody's fool, and a haste bargain hunter is usually surprised when they get home to inspect that gem they just snatched up for a steal.

    Take your time evaluating a gun. If the deal is too hot to be able to do your due dillegence on it prior to an offer - let it go. What's too good to be true, is usually too good to be true.

    Thanks for raising those good points, Jim. Restoration is not a tool of collectors. Restoration is a tool of gun sellers. Our job is to know their tactics better than they do.

    Happy collecting men.
    saa.
  6. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    It is interesting that sometimes on these sites I say that this or that gun has been reblued, replated, etc. I don't do this for fun and of course I can be wrong, but I have seen an awful lot of guns, and a lot of fakes, reproductions, restorations, or what ever someone chooses to call them, so I think I am not often wrong. The surprising thing is that many times, I will be called down by the buyer, who will insist that the gun is original and perfect, even though it is obviously neither. So I don't get flak from the seller, who might be expected to defend the gun, but from the buyer, who can't accept the idea that he has either bought an out-and-out fake or has paid too much for an genuine item.

    Jim
  7. saa

    saa New Member

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    People are sensative when it comes to any evaluation where their judgement may be questioned. After all, they have spent their time looking, evaluating (to the best of their ability), and then making a calculated judgement of value and condition - and their final aquisition.

    When they come here to show it off, or even ask for opinion on it, they are sometimes taken aback that they could have been off base as to the actual condition and accurate evaluation of what they truly have.

    Human nature says that we usually react to this badly. We, as people, want to be respected for our knowledge and abilities, and we don't like it when we're found to be somewhat deficient.

    That's the learning process. We have to learn to embrace it, especially with a market like firearms - and especially old, antique, and collectible firearms.

    This is an amazing opportunity to listen and learn. To ask for help, evaluation, and advice - and in that, learn and soak up knowledge.

    If we're easy as possible in our evaluations and corrections when someone needs some help adjusting to the reality of what they have - and members realize that we are not here to beat them up. We're here to help them, and learn from them.

    Then we start to enjoy that give and take a bit more. Less emotion and more genuine interest in learning.

    "Every man is my superior in some way. In that, I learn of him." Emerson was brilliant with that statement, and I try to remember it daily.

    I hope we all do.

    Thanks Jim for your help. I look forward to you correcting me, likely over and over!! :) I'm always willing to learn.
    saa.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2012
  8. mkbrmb

    mkbrmb New Member

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    This thread may be long dead, but I am new to the forum, and am enjoying reading all the old threads. I have been collecting the Colt Auto's for the last 30 years. What I used to be able to buy for a couple of hundred dollars, are now priced for thousands. Not because of any particular market increase, but wierd perception of "rarity" and self indulgence. "My stuff is always better and worth more that someone elses".

    There are actually many of these available, if you have some patience and keep looking. I have two of the 1900's sight safety intact, two 1902 Sporting, 4 of the 1903 pocket, and 2 of the 1902 military. I try to find examples that are decent on the outside, better on the inside, all are shooters, and there are a couple of sources for correct ammo. I would be glad to share sources, if anyone cares. The ammo is expensive, but is available. (Sounds like .223 right now, doesn't it?)

    I have seen several examples of Turnbull restorations, and they are beautiful to look at, but why not find the real deal to begin with? Or at least find one close enough to "fine" condition to make restoration unnecessary?

    Anyway, I'm sure it is very subjective, and likeone senior member stated, I'm sure something I will say will piss someone off, because it appears to question their judgment or intelligence. Luckily, I don't care.

    I think I will stop rambling now, go to my safe, get my latest 1900 with sight safety and go out back to run several clips through it.

    Best wishes.
  9. mkbrmb

    mkbrmb New Member

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    Just finished cleaning my Colt 1900. I ran 3 clips of 7 through it, held a 4" pattern from 25 ft., except for two pulled shots, one slight jam on extractor, easily cleared and no other problems. These guns are sweet to shoot. Of course, always use the correct ammo, 38ACP, NEVER 38 Super.

    Hope the person that started the thread has had a chance to shoot and enjoy the 1903 that they found. Looks like a 1903 pocket, maybe a 1902 Sporting, can't tell from the initial pics. Either way, a clean and nice gun.
  10. mkbrmb

    mkbrmb New Member

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    Here's what I was just shooting.

    Attached Files:

  11. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    ....so what value would you place on this 18th century spanish flintlock bought in turkey-stan ;)
  12. Lanrezac

    Lanrezac Active Member

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    Those are excellent pictures of a nice gun, mkbrmb. Thanks for putting them up!
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