1943 Colt Official Police .38 Spl 6" Heavy Barrel
Mint Condition Heat Blue Finish Factory Box No Res
Used Condition
FFL is required
Current Bid
$920.00
Starting Bid
$0.01
No Reserve!
10 Bids Bid History
Time Left 15 min rule
Item has Ended
8/6/2017 8:25 PM
Item viewed 253 times.
Item 671015363
Location Rio Rico, AZ 85648
Shipping
Priority Mail$35.00
No international shipments
Payment Personal Check, Visa / MasterCard, American Express, Discover, USPS Money Order, Money Order, Certified Check
Checkout Yes
Sales Tax
Seller must collect sales tax from the following states:
AZ 6.6%   
Inspection/ Return Policy
Three Days from the date the item is received

The seller of this item assumes all responsibility for this listing. You must contact the seller to resolve any questions or concerns before placing a bid. Payment must be made using U.S. dollars ($) unless otherwise stated in the listing. Firearms may only be shipped to a licensed dealer (FFL Holder). Some listed items may not be legal in every state. Complete your purchase within the law.

Please read the Item Characteristics for important listing details.

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Auction Item

74 Years Old – Collector’s Grade - Manufactured in 1943 - WWII Era - Colt – Official Police - .38 Special - 6" Heavy Barrel - 6 Round Fluted Cylinder - Open Iron Rear Sight - Fixed Front Crescent Sight - Factory Original Colt Heat Blue Finish - Cut Checkered Walnut Side With Silver Medallions - Historic American Made Revolver

"Open Bid" - "No Reserve" auction format - gunbroker.com members set the opening and closing values

Few finer examples on the market. The serial number is 704167. Proofhouse dates this firearm to 1943. There is a factory box included with this example. Colt artisan gunsmiths used the famous heat bluing process to bring to life some of the most distinguished metal finishes ever produced. Colt's heat bluing created a radiant luster that compares to the elegant shine of a high grade black pearl. It’s an extremely detailed craft, but the artistry was expensive and proved to be a difficult finish to procure on the production line. After the war, Colt changed the process to accommodate volume output. And so was lost; as artisan craftsmanship yielded to market efficiencies. But here is an old world girl you can keep alive. She is a 6" Heavy Barrel example chambered for .38 Special cartridges. Hammer and trigger are hand checkered with the front and back straps smooth. The condition of this example shows near flawless. Grips are in outstanding condition as well. Recoil shield and forcing cone speak of a most limited model.
With a total production of over 400,000 pistols, the Official Police ranks as one of the most successful handguns ever made. Built on Colt’s .41 or “I” frame, it was manufactured in a variety of chamberings including .22 LR, .32-20 (discontinued in 1942), .41 Long Colt (discontinued in 1938), and the most common and popular, the .38 Special. Colt’s “Positive Lock” firing pin block safety was a standard feature of the revolver, preventing the firing pin from striking the primer unless the trigger was deliberately pulled. The pistol’s sights consisted of a blade front with a fixed iron open rear sight, which was a simple V-notch shaped groove milled into the revolver’s top strap. The top strap had a matte finish to reduce glare down the sight plane. We have attached multiple Hi-Definition photographs in various lighting conditions for your review and consideration. She comes as photographed.

Colt Official Police History

Introduced to the firearms market in 1927, the Colt Official Police is a medium frame, double-action revolver with a six-round cylinder, primarily chambered for the .38 Special cartridge, and manufactured by the Colt's Manufacturing Company. The intended specific target market for the Official Police was mainly law enforcement agencies and it became one of the best selling police firearms of all time, eventually in the 1950s coming to exemplify typical peace officer weaponry. The Official Police was also used by various U.S. and allied military forces during World War II. As the 20th Century began, the older .32 caliber revolvers which had been standard-issue for the majority of American police departments began to be phased out in favor of the larger-bore .38 caliber. In 1908 Colt introduced a sleek and modernized revolver they dubbed the Army Special, which in the powerful (for the time) and popular .38 Special quickly became the issue service revolver of many departments. During the same period, revolvers began to fall out of favor with the U.S. Military, especially after the adoption on the U.S. Model of 1911 semi-automatic pistol. As military sales of their revolvers dropped off, Colt searched for an alternative market and realized the popularity and strong sales of their product line with civilian law enforcement agencies could form their replacement market. By 1927 the overwhelming sales of two popular models, the Army Special and Colt Police Positive, had assured Colt’s dominance of the law enforcement firearms market. Colt’s marketing strategy was further fine-tuned by making a few superficial alterations to the Army Special revolver and then renaming it as the “Official Police” model. The changes included adding checkering to the trigger, matting the topstrap of the frame and widening the rear sight groove. Colt also upgraded the quality of the gun’s finish from a dull blued finish to a highly polished blued surface. In 1930, Colt scored a marketing coup when they publicized that their Official Police model could easily handle the firing of heavily-loaded .38 rounds intended for competitor Smith & Wesson's new large N-frame revolver, the .38-44, none of the comparable S&W revolvers could manage this feat. By 1933 the Colt sales catalog listed many law enforcement agencies as having adopted the OP as a sidearm, including the New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Kansas City police departments. In addition many state police organizations and even the Federal Bureau of Investigation chose the OP as their issue revolver. The U.S. Army also bought some of the revolvers, issuing them to military police and to federal agencies in need of a revolver for their armed agents, such as the Treasury Department, Coast Guard, and the Postal Inspection Service. Many Official Police revolvers were also bought by the police forces and militaries of various South American countries. Between May 1940 and June 1941, 49,764 Official Police revolvers in .38 New Police or .38/200 caliber were purchased by the British Purchasing Commission and shipped to the United Kingdom for use by British and Commonwealth armed forces as a substitute standard sidearm. These revolvers bore British military acceptance markings and had a 5" barrel; the butt was fitted with a military-style lanyard ring. Most of these OP revolvers were assembled from commercial-grade parts made before 1942. When the U.S. became involved in World War II, the U.S. government requested contracts to supply .38 revolvers required for arming security personnel charged with the security of government buildings, shipyards, and defense plant installations against sabotage or theft. Commencing in 1941, small quantities of the .38 Colt Official Police were procured directly from the Defense Supplies Corporation (DSC). When government purchasing officials objected to production delays of the OP, as well as the unit cost, Colt responded by simplifying the gun. Savings were achieved by eliminating all unnecessary exterior polishing operations, substituting a smooth-face trigger and hammer, and fitting the gun with simplified checkered wood grips with the Colt medallion; the latter was soon replaced by 'Coltwood' molded plastic grips. Instead of the normal bluing, the revolver was given a dull parkerized finish. Dubbed the Colt Commando, the weapon was primarily used to arm units of Military police, security guards at U.S. defense plant installations and shipyards, as well as limited clandestine issue to agencies involved in overseas espionage and military intelligence. After the Allied victory, Colt resumed commercial production and returned to the prewar polished blued finish, but retained the plastic grips which they labeled “Coltwood” until 1954 when the checkered wooden grips were reintroduced. During the postwar period, Colt fell on difficult financial times and the company introduced few new models. At Smith & Wesson, both output and new model civilian and police sales improved, and the sales margin gap between the two corporations progressively tightened. Finally in the 1960s S&W took over the lead. A contributing factor to this change may have been Smith & Wesson's generally lower cost per unit, accompanied by a double-action trigger pull on their military & police model that was preferred by many agencies teaching the new combat-oriented double-action revolver training. Colt announced the discontinuation of the Official Police in 1969, stating that competitive production of the design was no longer economically feasible.

Colt Official Police General Specifications

  • Make: Colt
  • Model: Official Police
  • Type : Revolver
  • Place of Origin: United States
  • Produced: 1908-1969
  • Materials: Carbon Steel
  • Frame: "I"
  • Top Strap: Serrated To Prevent Glare
  • Lock: Positive Locking System
  • Caliber: .38 Special
  • Finish: Factory Original Colt Heat Blue
  • Barrel Length: 6" Heavy Barrel
  • Capacity: 6 Round Fluted Cylinder
  • Condition: Used – One Of The Finest We've Seen
  • Grip: Cut Checkered - Silver Medallions
  • Rear Sights: Open Iron
  • Front Sights: Fixed Crescent Blade
  • Action: Double Action / Single Action
  • Serial Number: 704167
  • Manufactured: 1943 - Hartford, Connecticut

Please review the attached photos for an accurate visual representation of this 1943 Colt Official Police. We know everyone would prefer to put hands on a gun they are about to bid on, knowing that, we've attached multiple photo angles of the gun in various lighting conditions, our apologies for slowing down your load time. We have the honor of listing quite a few high end firearms in outstanding condition this week. Feel free to check out our other auctions @ diamond1210. If you like the product, bookmark us. More fine iron every week. Thank you for bidding on another Diamond Firearms product. After you win this auction, call us @ 520-398-2955. Give us the chance to perfect your firearm requirements. From tactical to collectible and all the ballistics in between...

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Seller provided no "Additional Terms of Sale"
Manufacturer
Colt
Model
Official Police
Caliber
.38 Spl.
Barrel Length
6 inch
Capacity
6
Frame Finish
Blued
Grips
Wood
UPC
 
SKU
 
Mfg Part Number
 
Weight