Old gun worth a mint
Because last week we inadvertently attached photos of a Colt 1911 to a story about an 1860 Colt Navy, we decided it was only right to change things up and show you a picture of last week’s Colt Navy with this week’s story about the Colt 1911.
Confused? We’re sorry, but at least both guns are Colts and both are at Friedman’s.
Chris Leopard was surprised when the Colt 1911 popped up at the store, not so much because it was a model 1911, which is far from rare, but because the gun was obviously old and all the parts were original.
“We were worried that some of the parts had been changed out because of the blue finish on it,” he says. “But after being checked out by a 1911 expert, we determined that all the parts were original, which increased its value significantly.”
The special expert’s opinion increased the weapon’s value to $7,000.
Why so valuable? For one thing, it’s old.
“It was produced in 1913, two years after the 1911 was developed,” Leopard says. “This is one of the original Colts, with a serial number in the 1,100s.”
That means it was one of the first 1,100 off the assembly line, which is a very low number.
“You’re basically looking at a 99-year-old gun,” Leopard says. “You might as well call it a 100-year-old gun in a month or two.”
Leopard says the gun was brought in by a guy who said his father had acquired it at an estate sale in Arizona. Though the father may have kept it safe, the guy who brought it in carried it for personal protection, which struck Leopard as a little strange.
“This is not a gun that you would carry for personal protection,” Leopard says. “It should have been put up.”
In spite of that fact that it suffered the wear and tear of daily carrying, Leopard says it’s in excellent condition, especially for a gun of that age.
“You can buy the same style of gun, which is still produced by Colt, today,” he says. “It’s held its design though the years and it’s a desirable weapon.”
Not only can you buy a new Colt 1911 today, Leopard says you can by a model 1911 from just about every handgun manufacturer.
So what is it about a 1911?
“When you hold the weapon, it just feels natural,” he says. “It feels like it’s made for your hand, especially the angle of the grip. They’re very accurate, they’re very reliable, and it being a .45, it provides a lot of firepower in a small package.”
And unlike many antique guns he comes across, Leopard says he wouldn’t just put it away in a collection.
“Even though it’s a 100-year-old gun, I would fire it,” he says. “The tolerances are still very tight, and where you would think that something that had been used for 100 years would be worn out, this gun would still operate as if new.”
The 1911 represents an advancement in technology from the 1860 Navy. Where the 1860 Navy was a percussion gun, the 1911 was a semi-automatic. You Might Also Like:
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