When did the Detective Specials change from having exposed ejector rods to shrouded?
How bad would one with the older style ejector rod have to be to only be worth $200?
pretty rough. If you find one in good shape you will be surprised how well the shoot. Great lockwork.
Change was in the early seventies. $200 for any Dec Special is almost unheard of these days.
An acquaintance of mine bought a house from an older widower last year and at the time the guy showed him this Detective Special he wanted to sell but the acquaintance didn't have the cash to deal. So, the acquaintance is passing this older fellow's new house in another town a month or two ago and the guy's outside so the acquaintance stops in and they chat for a while. Acquaintance brings up the Det. Spec. and the guy says he still has it and goes to get it.
Neither knows what it's worth so they settle on $200 because the older fellow's new lady doesn't want it in the house. Acqauintance sees me on-duty the other night and shows me a cell phone pic of it and relays the story to me and asks how I think he did. Looked to be in at least 85% condition from what I could see with original stocks so I told him that I don't know much about Colt's but figure he could easily double his money if he were to sell it (he doesn't want to sell, he likes the heck out of it and sold off his Glock 26 in favor of carrying the Colt.)
Thank you for your information, I'll pass it along.
I paid $340 for one with shrouded ejector and black rubber Colt grips in about 95% condition and felt sorta like I stole it. She is a safe queen and I knew she would be when I bought her.
Early 70's is cutoff for ejector lug shroud. Of course, with Colt, there is no hard cutoff date.
A $200 DS may surprise you. It wasn't that long ago that these were $400 guns no matter what shape they were in or who was selling them. $800-$1,000 Detective Specials are a relatively new concept. It would not surprise me that if you found one private party that the owner may just be out of current colt price paradigmn, and view these as $400 guns new. Lots of old DS's sitting in some old fart's sock drawer with the ammo he bought with the gun still loaded in it.
(EDIT: Based on your follow-up post, this statement is partially true it seems).
However, in most cases, the best you will do on a DS is around $400 for a rough and used "shooter-grade" example from the 80's or 90's UAW strike years. Most DS seem to hover in the $600-$700 range these days with a wide variation from near perfection to total crap, so a cash buyer should take their time finding one.
For $200, if it fires, pick it up.