Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 3143: Colt Medium Frame Lightning Slide Action Rifle in .32-20

Auction Date: August 28, 2022

Fine Colt Medium Frame Lightning Slide Action Rifle in Scarce .32-20 W.C.F.

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $2,000 - $3,000

Fine Colt Medium Frame Lightning Slide Action Rifle in Scarce .32-20 W.C.F.

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Lightning
Type: Rifle
Gauge: 32-20 WCF
Barrel: 25 3/4 inch octagon
Finish: blue
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 336
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 120
Class: Antique

Colt's Lightning rifles were introduced in the mid-1880s in an attempt to compete in the repeating rifle market dominated by Winchester. Unlike Colt's prior attempt, the short lived Colt-Burgess, the Lightning offered something readily different than a Winchester. "Pump action" shotguns and rifles had been invented a few decades earlier but had not been produced in large numbers, but these "Lightning" rifles demonstrated that a slide action could be fired very rapidly and without taking your firing hand away from the trigger like you must with a lever action. These medium frame rifles and carbines were the most popular of Colt's three Lightning frame sizes because they were chambered for many of the same cartridges as Colt's famous Single Action Army and other revolvers. The .44-40 W.C.F. cartridge of the Winchester Model 1873 and Colt's "Frontier Six Shooter" was the most popular making examples in other calibers particularly desirable. This rifle was manufactured in 1889 and is chambered in .32-20 W.C.F., a cartridge with a reputation for accuracy, and has the standard markings and features.

Rating Definition:

Fine with 50% original blue finish blended with dark brown patina and minor spotting. The hammer has 75% plus of the vibrant original case colors. The refinished wood is also fine and has crisp checkering and minor bruising and scratches. Mechanically excellent.

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