Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Site Notices
1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 11/11/2003 4:15:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/14/2003 7:27:49 AM EST by ConfederatemummyAR15]
A few weeks ago I asked it it was possible to use .38spl through a 1901 colt.

I was asked to post serial numbers.

(i had to post url pic because geoshitties blocks direct image linking)

Like I said before a .38spl cartridge will fit into the cylinder, but I just want to make absolutly sure before I shoot it.

I hope this helps someone answer my question.

Link Posted: 11/11/2003 4:41:24 PM EST
I wouldn't shoot .38spl thru it unless it's been checked out by a good gunsmith, IMO.

If you were to use .38s, I'd stick to WC so as to keep pressures as low as possible.

My .o2
Link Posted: 11/11/2003 5:10:26 PM EST
What does WC mean?
Link Posted: 11/11/2003 5:17:47 PM EST

Originally Posted By ConfederatemummyAR15:
What does WC mean?

Wad Cutter
Link Posted: 11/11/2003 6:34:28 PM EST
Nice looking old 1901. that's right at the transition from black powder to smokeless, but it should be okay with light 38 spls. I'd get it checked by a good gunsmith and also check it against the 38 S&W (AKA Colt New Police) which was a little bit fatter than the 38SPL. Have the gunsmith check the timing and alignment before you try shooting it.
Link Posted: 11/12/2003 2:15:35 AM EST
Your gun is a US Army issue M1901. RAC was the Army's inspector at Colt and his stamp is on all the really old Colt military issue guns. The US Army, USN, and USMC bought versions of this gun and they are stamped with the actual service whose contract they were built under. Your's is a US Army revolver.

The serial number indicates it was manufactured in 1901. The numbers for 1901 start at 148,000 so your's is pretty early production for the military contract.

The .38 Special cartridge came out in 1902. Since your revolver was made in 1901, it wasn't originally a .38 special. The original Army cartridge was the .38 Long Colt, which was the official ctg for the Army from 1892 to 1911 (the .45 Colt was also still used during this time). The ".38 DA" on the barrel indicates it was this particular Army cartridge. A .38 Special chambered Colt from the early 20th centruy period will say ".38 Colt Special" if it's .38 special (Colt wouldn't use the marking .38 S&W Special on their guns).

The following warning comes from several references: "DO NOT FIRE .38 SPECIAL IN A GUN CHAMBERED FOR .38 LONG COLT". Apparently the chambers on many of these, like your's, will actually accept .38special cases, and some even .357 Magnum cases. Either way, firing standard .38 specials in it is not recommended.

Personally I would not fire store bought .38 special ammo in your gun. I would see no problem in using trimmed .38 special cases to make .38 LC, as .38 LC is long dead.

If your gun actually accepts .38 special cases without any problem, like binding, or anything else, you could probably use untrimmed .38 cases if you know what you are doing.

The bottom line is DO NOT fire store bought .38 special ammo in your gun. As mentioned, you may be OK with wad cutters, but with a historical martial piece that nice, I'd stick to handloads.

The gun itself is a wonderful piece of history and one really nice looking Army issue Colt from a time that is not too well known to most gun folks. You have a VERY nice gun there.

Top Top