Tag Archives: colt cobra

Secret Agent Man…

Colt really pioneered the modern small-frame revolver when it introduced the Detective Special, fundamentally an abbreviated Police Positive Special with a 2-inch barrel, in 1927. Introduced at the height of Prohibition and the era of the great automobile-borne gangsters of the “Roaring Twenties,” the Colt Detective soon became a hit and was successful enough to remain in production until 1995, which is one heck of a run.

Immediately after World War II, Colt pioneered making handguns with such “Atomic Age” aerospace materials as early aluminum. With the material dubbed “Coltalloy” at the time, Colt introduced an aluminum-framed variant of the popular Detective Special in 1950 named the Cobra– the company’s very first of an extensive line of “Snake Guns.”

The same footprint as the 21-ounce all-steel Detective, the Cobra lost more than a quarter-pound of weight, hitting the scales closer to 15 ounces with the same 6-shot capacity.

In 1955, Colt responded to the newly introduced and popular S&W Chief’s Special by moving to make the Cobra even more compact. Taking the aluminum-framed 6-shooter and trimming the length of the grip frame down while keeping everything else intact, the Agent was born.

More in my column at Guns.com.

Sure, sure, but do you know of the Colt BOA?

The Colt BOA was only made in limited numbers for a single year, then sold through a single distributor, making it probably the most elusive and desirable of the company’s double-action revolvers.

Between 1950 and 2003, Colt delivered to wheel gun aficionados a series of seven now-classic “snake” guns: Cobra, Python, Diamondback, Viper, BOA, King Cobra, and Anaconda. Some of these were more popular and widespread, such as the Diamondback which was made in both .22LR and .38 Special, while some were less frequently encountered, such as the Anaconda which was made in .44 Mag and .45 Colt. For seekers of the seven serpents, however, a couple of these guns are almost impossible to find: the Viper, which was just a regular catalog item for Colt in 1977, and the BOA, which is even rarer.

In fact, for many Colt fans, it is kind of a holy grail.

More in my column at Guns.com, where I checked out BOA #513.

Welcome back, Commander

The Colt Commander was introduced in 9mm for an Army pistol contract in 1949 aimed at providing a more effective replacement to the .32 ACP Model 1903 “General Officer’s Pistol.” It soon became popular on the civilian market and in 1971 a steel-framed (to differentiate it from the Lightweight Commander) Combat Commander went into production. That 70 Series Colt remained in the stable until 1980 and, after a brief hiatus, was replaced by the 80 Series variant that remained in production in one form or another until 1998 but has sadly been missing from the lineup since then.

Now, to borrow a phrase from John Wick, it looks like the Combat Commander is back, at an MSRP of $949.

colt-revamps-combat-commander-1911-for-2017

More in my column at Guns.com.

Colt finally gives the people what they want

2017 seems to be a year of “everything old is new again” at Colt as the company brushes off legacy tried and true designs and revamps them in an attempt to give the people what they want. Already leaked for this is the upcoming M16A1 reissue, a retro Vietnam era SP1-style AR-15 that is expected to begin shipping this year.

Another new offering is a rail gun version of Colt’s Delta Elite. The big 10mm longslide has been a favorite of “centimeter” aficionados for years and is in current production, but lacked the accessory rail.

colt-delta-elite-rail-gun-cc

Then, after vacating the double-action revolver market, now have a stainless steel-framed Cobra reboot.

colt-cobra2

More in my column at Guns.com.

The Colt Detective Special

Twenty years before Smith and Wesson gave the world their Chief’s Special, Colt pioneered the snub-nosed revolver. A handy six-shooter with a 2-inch barrel, the Colt gun was revolutionary for its day and is still viable nearly a century later. Colt called it the Detective Special.

In the 1920s, a new wave of Prohibition criminals such as John Dillinger, Machinegun Kelly, and Clyde Barrow captured the public’s imagination. They also scared the crap out of law enforcement. With these criminals being equipped with high-powered Thompson subguns bought over the counter, coupled with weapons stolen from National Guard armories, law enforcement needed to upgrade their sidearms. Plainclothes detectives either had to carry full sized revolvers or pistols, or were forced to tote small and ineffective European revolvers in tiny calibers such as the Velo Dog. What they needed was a handgun capable of being carried concealed, yet still chambered in an effective caliber.

Enter the Colt Detective…

Read the rest in my column at Firearms Talk

colt detective