This revolver was manufactured in the first days of production of the famous Model 1860 Army revolvers in 1860 and has the distinctive fluted cylinder only used on around 4,000 of the early revolvers in the 3 to 8,000 range and the very rarely seen Model 1851 Navy sized grip and shorter 7 1/2 inch barrel. It is pictured in the middle of page 72 of "The William M. Locke Collection" by Frank Sellers. It features a German silver blade front sight, "-ADDRESS SAML COLT HARTFORD CT.-" on top of the barrel, small "COLTS/PATENT" marking on the left side of the frame, "PATENTED SEPT 10TH 1850" in one of the cylinder flutes, the noted Model 1851 Navy sized brass grip frame with silver plated finish and small "D" and "G" marks on the left side of the trigger guard, and a smooth oil finished walnut grip. The barrel, wedge, rear face of cylinder, arbor pin, frame, trigger guard, back strap, and grip are all marked with the two-digit serial number "72." The rear face of cylinder is also numbered "40" and "55." (Writer has no explanation, but the cylinder is definitely original to the revolver as it clearly carries the matching number "72") Model 1860 Army revolvers with both the fluted cylinder and the Model 1851 Navy length barrel and grip are very hard to find and are important pieces in any complete collection of Colt percussion revolvers. This variation was an important predecessor of the standard Model 1860 Army revolvers that served as the primary handguns of the Union Army.
Fine with 30% original silver plating concentrated primarily around the trigger guard, aged patina on the brass and silver, strong traces of original blue and casehardened finish, and otherwise smooth gray and brown patina and some slight oxidation on the iron. There are minor marks and scratches throughout. The grip is also fine and has moderate lower edge wear, a few small chips, and minor marks and dings. The markings remain crisp, and the action is mechanically excellent. This is an extremely rare opportunity to get your hands on a highly sought after early variation of the Colt Model 1860 Army.
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