Currently offered in 45 Colt and 44-40 with 4 3/4- or 5 1/2-inch barrels (38-40 and 7 1/2-inch barrel length are available on occasion - call the Custom Shop for availability; phone: 800-962-2658, ext.1437) and choice of color-casehardened/blued or overall bright nickel finishes, the original has lately been a very slow seller surrounded by a fast-moving flood of imitations, as even the most passionate fan finds it hard to pay as much as five times the price of a similar-featured alternative brand just to own the Colt label.All four clicks still remain on the current SAA—which will likely be justification enough for some Colt fans to continue paying more than twice the price of the Cowboy just to hear them.
First announced at the January 1998 SHOT Show and now finally in production, the Colt Cowboy single-action revolver is specifically designed for the cowboy action competitor, Colt collector, and casual recreational shooter.The SAA design allows the hammer at rest to put the tip of the hammer-mounted firing pin directly against the primer of any cartridge that is loaded in the barrel-aligned chamber.In this position any external blow against the hammer will likely discharge that cartridge.At rest the bar is withdrawn and the hammer face rests directly against the frame, making no contact with the firing pin at all.So the new Colt Cowboy can be safely carried with six rounds loaded while the SAA cannot.
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(The investment cast technology and less premium finish are what primarily account for the new gun’s more competitive pricing.)Put side by side, it is difficult to tell the new Colt Cowboy from an actual SAA, and there is no question but that Colt has taken great care to ensure that the handling characteristics, balance, style, and overall flavor of the classic original have been preserved in the updated gun. Casecolored frame;satin blue cylinder, barrel,and grip frame Price ...............................................$599A number of parts are actually interchangeable between the Cowboy revolver and the current SAA—including trigger, barrel, ejector rod assembly, and grip frame.The shape and size of the frame, cylinder dimensions and fluting, grip configuration, barrel length, caliber, sights, and flat mainspring hammer function remain the same. Non-interchangeable parts include the cylinder, cylinder frame, hammer, grip panels, and (of course) the transfer bar ignition parts. And its popularity as a gun to own and shoot remains unabated, even as the 20th century draws to a close. Army, the famed Peacemaker is without question the most familiar and immediately recognizable revolver ever manufactured.The base pin bushing inside the cylinder is fixed on the Cowboy, whereas it was removable in earlier versions of the SAA.
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The base pin itself is the same diameter as on the SAA, but it is a bit shorter and has a spring-loaded plunger in its rear tip (due to the presence of the transfer bar system).
This is a major advancement and truly brings the Colt single-action configuration into the 20th century—just as we get ready to enter the 21st century.
Colt is to be commended for having incorporated its transfer bar design into the Cowboy mechanism with so little disruption of classic SAA characteristics.
Some necessary changes include the absence of the firing pin from the face of the hammer, and the handpiece that engages the ratchets on the rear of the cylinder has a different shape.
There is no separate hardened firing pin bushing around the pin hole in the firewall of the frame.