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Colt Firearms

The Colt firearms company was incorporated in 1855 in Connecticut as the Colt’s Patent Fire Arms Mfg. Co.

Renowned inventor Samuel L. Colt had been involved in firearms manufacturing since he was granted a patent for his first revolver in 1836.

A popular saying, with many variations, goes something like this: “God created men, Samuel Colt made them equal.” Samuel Colt’s revolver created the firepower necessary for an individual to protect themselves from as many as six assailants at one time.

Articles on Colt Firearms

Mad at Colt

In a move sure to anger consumers, Colt has sent a letter to its distributors stating it will only sell high capacity magazines to law enforcement and the government despite the sunset of the law on September 13, 2004. In the same statement, dated September 14, 2004, Colt states it will continue to sell Match Target Rifles in present configuration to the public and that law enforcement semiauto rifles will only be sold to law enforcement and the government.

AWA sued by Colt

AWA International, Inc. (does business as American Western Arms), the manufacturer of the “Peacekeeper” and “Longhorn” single action 1873 revolvers, has been sued by Colt’s Manufacturing and New Colt Holding Corporation for allegedly copying Colt’s “trade dress.”

Colt files lawsuit – again

Colt is now taking on Heckler & Koch and Bushmaster for “… acts of trademark infringement, trade dress infringement, trademark dilution, false designation of origin, false advertising, patent infringement, unfair competition and deceptive trade practices” having to do with their M4[R] carbine and parts for the AR family of guns.

Colt and Superman

One pictures the Once-rampant trademark Colt hanging its head in shame. Colt’s dropping of most of its fine self-defense handguns — at least in part due to pressure from the municipal lawsuits against the gun industry — will prove to have been the wrong thing done for the wrong reason.

Vacuuming Up Colt’s Losses

Many view Colt’s retiring from the general handgun market at this controversial time as a cowardly betrayal. Some gun owners are swearing to never buy that brand again. Other firms will fill the gap.

My favorite handgun

My favorite handgun is the 1873-1973 Peacemaker Centennial Commemorative; specifically the nickel-plated version in .44 WCF (.44-40).

Connecticut law points assault rifle ban at Colt’s – Colt’s Manufacturing Company Inc

Most ironically, the Colt’s Sporter is also on the list. The State of Connecticut is 65 percent owner of Colt’s, but that didn’t seem to slow Weicker in signing the bill.

Legal shoot-out in Connecticut over Sporter “look-alikes.” – Colt Sporter rifle

Connecticut’s ban on assault rifles is being challenged in court by a group of citizens. Due to Colt’s recent financial difficulties, the company has declined to participate in the law suit.

Articles on Colt Handguns

Articles on Colt Revolvers

The colt snubbies: once the quintessential cop gun, the “Dick” special still serves

Colt has made many types of revolvers over the years, but the family of small, solid frame, simultaneous ejection swing-out cylinder revolvers known as the Detective Special, the Cobra and the Agent were among the most popular revolvers Colt ever made.

Colt’s New Service

By the end of the 1880s, Colt’s began a line of Army and Navy double action revolvers that were the first to have swing out cylinders.

Big, bold and beautiful: Colt’s New Service: or one man’s talent for swiping dad’s guns

No other big bore double action six gun has ever intrigued and fascinated my narrow little mind quite like Colt’s big New Service revolver. During its 1898 to 1944 production run, its been called everything from raw-boned ugly, to gracefully sexy. As is often the case, the truth lies somewhere in between.

The Colt New Service Border Patrol revolver: an original ‘fightin’ sixgun

The Coil New Service in .38 Special was personally selected for Border Patrol issue by the late Col. Charles Askins, renowned U.S. Border Patrolman and firearms instructor. Chosen for its robust, heavy duty qualities, the Colt New Service .38 Special was also adopted with fixed sights for the same reason.

For want of a cavalry Colt: one man’s quest for a dream-gun

Colt introduced the Single Action Army and its .45 Colt cartridge in 1873 and the U.S. Army accepted it that same year for cavalry service. In fact, the 7th Cavalry’s 1874 summer expedition to explore the Black Hills area was delayed until the regiment’s new Colt revolvers arrived via railroad from the east. From 1873 until 1892 the Colt SAA .45 was standard issue for U.S. Army horse soldiers, and it actually remained in their hands for some time after the official adoption of a Colt double-action .38 revolver in the early 1890s.

The Single Action Army Colt’s legendary Model P

In 1877, the Colt Model P was chambered in .44-40 as a companion piece to the Winchester Model 1873 levergun. About this same time the first Colt Single Action Army with a 43/4-inch barrel was offered. The three standard barrel lengths are known as the Cavalry Model (7 1/2 inch), Artillery Model (5 1/2 inch), and Civilian Model (4 3/4 inch).

Colt model 1849 pocket pistol

Colt’s experiences with military contracts had convinced him that his business would have to serve a much larger and more stable market in order to survive and grow. In 1847, he announced plans to produce a revolver of manageable size and simple construction that would be useful to the general public.

Do-It-Yourself Gunsmithing Parts And Accessories For Colt And Ruger Single-Actions

Custom pistolsmiths are doing a thriving business providing a service for those who prefer their sixguns a cut above. Rechamberings are big these days with .44 Magnums becoming .45 Colts, .475 and .500 Linebaughs.

The New Colt Single Action Army

Rumors of its demise are greatly exaggerated — the greatest sixgun in history is still available from Colt.

Articles on Colt Automatic Pistols

Colt 1903 redux: some dead horses aren’t

Some guns are timeless in design and function. The Colt 1911 is the foremost example, yet I’ve always thought the Colt 1903 Pocket was too. It hasn’t been made since WWII, but Colt did make 572,215 1903 .32s and 138,009 1908 .380s before shelving the design. Although many of these guns are highly desirable collector’s items and should be left in their existing state, there are many more rusting away with little or no finish and pitted outer metal still able to perform yeoman duty as a defensive gun.

The Colt 1911 Gunsite Pistol: re-birth of a classic idea

The pistol was to be a fighting tool, and nothing else. Did Colt do that? I think so, and so does Gunsite. In over 500 rounds of .45 loads, fired by three different shooters without cleaning, there was not a bobble, not the slightest hint of malfunction. The pistol was accurate–probably more accurate than was necessary given its mission–and utterly reliable. It’s a pistol Colt and Gunsite can be proud of.

Colt’s Depp Cover 9mm

Parabellum power in a .380-sized pistol, the new Pocket Nine comes with special tactical features.

Articles on Colt Rifles

Good barrels: The What and Why

There is essence to the AR-15 wahhoo component. I said the elemental trick was to “float a good barrel.” Last time we got onto fore-end tubes, which is the “float” part, so now you need a “good barrel.” and “‘good” needs a good definition. Here’s one: it’s one that makes you happy with the accuracy of your AR-15. I can be a little more objective, but not any more honest. I expect my competition rifles to shoot groups less than 4″ vertical at 600 yards. That’s a 10-shot group fired prone with a scope.

Articles on Colt Ammunition

The Custom Loading .45 Colt

Even though the .45 Colt cartridge will celebrate its 125th anniversary very shortly, it is still our most versatile sixgun cartridge. There are few sixgun cartridges that can best it in any one category, and certainly none can do so as an all-around sixgun cartridge. It simply does it all.

Colt Firearms Manuals

.22 Caliber Conversion Unit Semi-Automatic Pistol

22 Cal. Conversion Unit Semiautomatic Series 80 Pistol

22 Pistol and Target Model

All American Model 2000

AR-15 22LR Conversion Kit

AR-15 Semiautomatic Rifle and Carbine

Automatic Caliber .25

Automatic Junior Caliber .25 Pistol

Automatic Pistol Caliber .25 Pocket Model, Hammerless

Automatic Pistol Pocket Model Caliber .32 and .380 Hammerless

Automatic Pistol Pocket Model Caliber .38

Cap and Ball Revolvers

Challenger Automatic Pistol Caliber

Colteer .22 Autoloader

Colteer 1-22

Courier .22 Autoloader

Cowboy Single Action Revolver

Detective and Commando Special, Diamondback, Police Positive, Agent, Cobra, Viper

Double Action Revolver

Double Action Series 90 – 380 and 9mm Auto Pistol

Double Eagle

Drilling Colt Sauer Sporting Rifle

Frontier Scout Buntline ’62 and Frontier Scout ’62 Revolvers

Gold Cup National Match MKIV-Series 70

Government Model MKIV Series 70-Model O

Government Model MKIV Series 70-Model O1970A1

Huntsman Automatic Pistol

Lawman MK V, Trooper MK V, Peacekeeper

Lawman MK III, Trooper MK III

Light Rifle Owner’s Manual (Original)

Light Rifle Owner’s Manual rev.5-12-00

Match Target Rifles

MKIV Series 80 and 90 Pistol (Government, Combat Commander, Defender, 1991A1, Officers ACP)

MKIV Series 80 Pistol (Gold Cup, Delta Gold Cup)

MKIV Series 80-380 Auto Pistol (Government – Mustang)

New Frontier, New Frontier Buntline


Sauer Sporting Rifle Instruction Booklet

Single Action Army Revolver

Sporter Rifles

Woodsman Automatic Pistol Caliber .22 Long Rifle

Woodsman Automatic Pistol Match Target Heavy Barrel Caliber .22 Long Rifle

Woodsman Automatic Pistol Match Target

Woodsman Automatic Pistol Target-Sport Model

WWI Reproduction Pistol Model M1911

WWII Reproduction Pistol Model M1911A1


Colt Firearms Patents

Combined thread rolling dies

Method of manufacturing non-slip thread rolling dies

Electronic firing system for target pistol

Roughing cutter

Thread rolling dies

Machine with rotating cutting tool

Tooling attachment adaptor assembly

Firing pin locking device

Cylindrical rifle handguard assembly

Open bolt firing mechanism for automatic firearm

Tool setting device for machining center

Laser measuring system and method for turning machine

Screw and floating drive nut assembly

Continuous contact gage for strip rolling process having floating mechanism

Tool changer for vertical spindle machine

Gage for direct internal measurement

DC Motor controller

Double action revolver apparatus and method

Roughing cutter

Thread rolling die and method of thread rolling

Firing pin locking device and method

Hydraulic buffer assembly for automatic or semiautomatic firearm

Books on Colt Firearms

Colt: An American Legend
Colt: An American Legend

Wilson has produced what may well be the definitive work on Colt firearms. Complementing his previous work, The Colt Heritage: the official history of Colt firearms, 1836-present ( LJ 11/1/79), this concentrates on the individual models the company produced. Interspersing his narrative with some biographical information on Sam Colt and his company, Wilson traces the development of the company line with more than 400 photos. The fine engraving and rich textures are shown to advantage in Latham’s photographs. Every model produced is described and illustrated, including rare pieces. An invaluable appendix traces the complete serial numbers and years of manufacture. Of interest to collectors and students of the history of technology, this is highly recommended. George F. Scheck, Naval War Coll. Lib., Newport, R.I.

The Colt Armory: A History of Colt's Manufacturing Company, Inc.
The Colt Armory: A History of Colt’s Manufacturing Company, Inc.

A completely new edition, featuring new chapters, lots of added information and an all-new color section. This affordable, updated version, complete with details of Colt’s triumphant escape from bankruptcy, deserves a cherished place in the library of every arms collector and historian.

Colt: The Making of an American Legend
Colt: The Making of an American Legend

This companion to the Wadsworth Atheneum’s exhibit of Colt miscellany in Hartford, Conn., is a rich social and political history of 19th-century America. It is also a joint biography of Samuel Colt, an enigmatic inventor and industrialist, and Elizabeth, the strong, resolute wife who carried on his dreams and life’s work. Hosley, the Koopman Curator at the Atheneum, follows Colt’s life from his strange beginnings, successes and failures, to the ultimate perfection of the firearm that would be adopted by the U.S. Army. In exploring the personal lives and excesses of this wealthy 19th-century couple, Hosley presents a particularly colorful history of the times. After Samuel’s death in 1862, Elizabeth Colt’s ongoing efforts to immortalize her husband’s accomplishments and their name led her to build memorials and statues and to create a philanthropic legacy for the city of Hartford. Elizabeth’s taste often went to the extreme, as seen in their mansion, Armsmear. “Armsmear’s reception room epitomizes the kind of blunt ostentation that was the trademark of America’s Eurocentric nouveau riche during the 1880’s.” On a larger scale, Hosley also shows how Colt fit into the culture of war and violence that would be so beneficial to his fiscal concerns. “The good people of this wirld [sic] are very far from being satisfied with each other,” wrote Colt, “and my arms are the best peacemakers.” Rich in illustrations and photographs (204 images, 72 in color) of the Colts’ firearms and art collections, Hosley creates a fascinating story that far exceeds the simple history of that famous gun.

The Government Models: The Development of the Colt Model of 1911
The Government Models: The Development of the Colt Model of 1911

The most authoritative source on the development of the world’s most popular military pistol. Includes an illustrated description and analysis of all the variations, including rare factory models. A beautiful color section shows a wide selection of the most exciting Colt M1911s ever made. One hundred and ten pages of complete factory shipping records allow individual pistols to be researched by serial number! These records include all martial and thousands of commercial big frame Colt autos through the last Transition Government Model of 1924. Carefully designed for quick reference and distinctive appearance, Goddards “The Government Models” is a must for every enthusiast of Colts and military firearms.

The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911

From the publishers of Gun Digest comes a comprehensive book on the most popular pistol in the world, the Model 1911.

This complete guide to the Model 1911 covers maintenance, improvements and accessories to maximize the performance of this famous gun. Top semi-custom guns are tested and evaluated as this book compares each model and variation. The author also includes repair tips and information on buying a used 1911.

  • Comprehensive companion book to annual Gun Digest issue
  • Complete guide of all models and variations of the Model 1911
  • More than 700 photos aid in detailed identification
  • Tips on buying a used 1911

Tactical 1911: The Street Cop's And SWAT Operator's Guide To Employment And Maintenance
Tactical 1911: The Street Cop’s And SWAT Operator’s Guide To Employment And Maintenance

The renaissance of the venerable Colt 1911 in .45 ACP has caused many cops to sit up and take notice. Here is the only book you will ever need to teach you how to select, modify, employ and maintain your Colt. Every critical aspect of the 1911 is here, including detailed information on sights, magazines, holsters, guide rods, serrations, finishes and much more.

Classic Colt Peacemakers
Classic Colt Peacemakers

The love affair with the Colt Peacemaker started more than 100 years ago. Today, millions of people recognize this revolver as “the gun that won the West.” Collectors are paying all-time high prices and with the rise of Cowboy Action Shooting, more people than ever are falling in love again with the Peacemaker. This is a look at the best of the best, the most storied, adorned and collectible examples of this popular revolver. Reach for this book to see rare and one-of-a-kind guns and read the stories behind them. Nothing fuels the romance of the Old West like the image of a Peacemaker and this book highlights some of the finest examples ever found.

Colt Single Action Army Revolver Study: New Discoveries
Colt Single Action Army Revolver Study: New Discoveries

It has been over a quarter of a century since the publication of A Study of the Colt Single Action Revolver, the classic, definitive guide to the Colt Single Action, the world’s most famous and popular pistol. Now C. Kenneth Moore, one of the original authors, is back to fill in the gaps and set the record straight. Decades in the making, this impressive new study brings us entirely up to date, including all the new research that the author has painstakingly gathered over the years. Inside these covers, each page is just packed with useful information about the Single Action – nearly all from primary, archival sources and presented here for the very first time. The serial number data alone will astound you. Also included: * Automatic Ejector Models, * Special section on low serial numbers, * U.S. Army testing data, * New details about militia S.A.A.s, * A true wealth of cartridge info. This is the kind of detailed knowledge that Colt collectors demand, and no collector of Colt revolvers can afford to go without this valuable new resource.

Colt Single Action Army Revolvers - U.S. Alterations
Colt Single Action Army Revolvers – U.S. Alterations

A comprehensive history of the revolvers that collectors call Artillery Models. These are the most historical of all S.A.A. Colts, and this new book covers all the details with a stunning amount of new information taken directly from archival sources. Heavily illustrated, and featuring important serial number data, this book will be a must-buy for all martial Colt collectors and historians of the Spanish-American War.

Colt's Single Action Army Revolver: The Legend, The Romance And The Rivals
Colt’s Single Action Army Revolver: The Legend, The Romance And The Rivals

Colt’s single action army revolver is the one revolver that captures the spirit of the American cowboy and holds the attention of gun enthusiasts and collectors around the world. It has been in almost continuous production since 1873, copied by more than a dozen manufacturers and remains as popular today as it was more than a century ago.

In Colt’s Single Action Army Revolver, author Doc O’Meara takes readers on a journey of discovery looking at this remarkable revolver from its beginnings. With production figures and serial number information, O’Meara serves collectors and historians. He also tests several modern reproductions of Colts and their rivals, providing ballistic and accuracy data for the shooter.

The M-16
The M-16

In 1965 when the US intervened in San Domingo military observers noted that the para’s of the 82nd Airborne were armed with a completely new gun made of light alloy and plastic.

This was the M 16, a weapon developed by an aeronautical engineer based on the design of Eugene Stoner. It was subsequently used in Vietnam and it was there that it became world renowned. With a number of adaptations more than ten million M 16’s have been produced and it is in service in at least 80 countries.

Jean Huon tells the fascinating story of this weapon. Packed with more than 200 full color images and 200 black and white photos, The M 16 is a comprehensive historyof the development of this key weapon. The book shows every conceivable version , variant, and accessory of the weapon. It even includes versions made under license by othe manucturers.

The M 16 will be of enormous interest to collectors and gun enthusiasts and to historians of the Vietnam and Post Vietnam eras.

Complete AR-15/M16 Sourcebook: What Every Shooter Needs to Know
Complete AR-15/M16 Sourcebook: What Every Shooter Needs to Know

This carefully researched revised and updated edition of The AR-15/M16 Sourcebook offers fresh insight into why the AR-15/M16 rifle remains a favorite of soldiers, law enforcement officials, civilian shooters and self-defense experts. In it, Duncan Long takes another look at the history of the “black-rifle” from the bureaucratic blunders and military infighting that ruined its reliability during the Vietnam War to the modifications that transformed it into the most reliable weapon in the world. He also examines the many military and custom spinoffs of the firearm, including an invaluable listing of its various models, supplemented by an impressive collection of photos and illustrations. In addition, he covers grenade launchers, SAW versions, and experimental weapons systems and even gives a detailed assessment of the OICW and other firearms now being tested as replacements for the U.S. military’s M16 and M4 carbine. An entire section of the book is devoted to the very newest accessories for the AR-15, with a hard look at which ones will enhance its capabilities-and which could get the shooter killed. In addition to offering advice on improving an AR-15 rifle, picking the best ammunition for it, and ensuring its reliability, Long presents simple techniques for creating a one-of-a-kind exotic weapon built around this rifle through the selection of parts and accessories now on the market (and where to get them). Finally, the book provides complete instructions on how to field-strip, detail strip, troubleshoot, and assemble an AR-15. Whether you want a weapon you can rely on to get you out of a tight spot or wish to build a super accurate target version of the AR-15, this is the most complete and up-to-date resource available on what many consider to be the best rifle ever made.

AR-15/M16: A Practical Guide
AR-15/M16: A Practical Guide

Here is the definitive book on the rifle that has been the inspiration for so many modern assault rifle designs. Invaluable to the M16 owner, it includes info on grenade launchers, assembly/disassembly, conversion kits and modifications, troubleshooting, ballistics and ammunition, combat use, testing, cleaning and lubrication. Also includes detailed step-by-step instructions and materials lists for the do-it-yourselfer.

The M16/AR15 Rifle (A Shooter's and Collector's Guide)
The M16/AR15 Rifle (A Shooter’s and Collector’s Guide)

In The M16/AR15 Rifle, Joe Poyer has traced the development of American military tactics from the late 1700s to the present day to show how Eugene Stoner’s concept of a small caliber, high velocity. Large magazine capacity military rifle was required by the modern battlefield.

And, since so much interest today in the M16 and its civilian counterpart, the AR15, has to do with military and civilian target shooting, he commissioned three rifles from a custom gunsmith during the writing of the book to show the true accuracy potential of the rifle. They were a 1,000 yard match rifle (aka spacegun because of its futuristic appearance), a match rifle meeting all requirements for the National Service Matches and a .22 rimfire version which is legal in most states that ban high capacity magazine rifles, termed “assault rifles” by media-hungry politicians and antigun groups.

Virtually every model of the AR15 manufactured today by any American company is described in the book. The author also shows the best way to commission a custom-built rifle, starting with how to pick the right gun smith and work with him to define the rifle at the start and thus keep costs down to how to break-in, sight-in and shoot the rifle to the best advantage. Also, tips on match and physical conditioning, ammunition selection and care and maintenance are included. A very complete book on owning and using the AR15.

AR-15/M16 Super Systems
AR-15/M16 Super Systems

AR-15/M16 Super Systems shows you how to customize this reliable firearm into a super system suited to your needs. Whether you want to modify your AR-15 or just want an inside look at experimental weapons that may be on tomorrow’s rifle range and battlefield, this is a book for you.

Black Magic: The Ultra Accurate AR-15
Black Magic: The Ultra Accurate AR-15

Offers a wealth of advice on AR-15 loads, modifications and accessories for everything from highpower to benchrest and varmints.

The Competitive AR15; The Mouse That Roared
The Competitive AR15; The Mouse That Roared

Glen Zediker is a High Master shooter and did it with the AR15. As the book’s title says, it is strongly competition oriented; particularly Service Rifle or “Camp Perry” shooting as it is sometimes mistakenly called. He’s a proud member of the yellow glass club and it comes through in this book. It is HEAVY with details, too many to list here.

He covers building, shooting, and maintaining a Service Rifle from the ground up. There are chapters on magazines, handloading, and ancillary gear. All of it is written in Glen’s easy to read style that has been featured in shooting magazines ranging from American Rifleman to Precision Shooting.

This book is the real deal when it comes to laying out information for the serious Service Rifle shooter and there is plenty of data that also applies to stock AR15s.

If you’re a fan of 10-shot one hole groups and you fancy the AR this is your book. In case you didn’t notice Glen publishes this book, along with a few others, by himself and he only writes (and prints) what he knows. This book goes far beyond a vanity printing and approaches the level of epigraph.

The Gun Digest Book Of The AR-15
The Gun Digest Book Of The AR-15

Hunters, military enthusiasts, self-defense experts and target-shooting competitors alike will find favor with a reference devoted to a firearm touted as one of the best small-caliber rifles ever invented. The Gun Digest Book of the AR-15 delivers details about the evolution of the rifle from its introduction to military action in the 1960s to its popularity at today’s competitions and training centers.

This book provides 500+ photos, details on function, barrel options, caliber, weight for various models, and an explanation of AR versus AK. In addition, tips on cleaning and maintenance, information about myths surrounding the AR-15, key legal information and results of product tests from today’s major manufacturers are covered.

Workbench AR-15 Project : A Step-by-Step Guide to Building Your Own Legal AR-15 Without Paperwork
Workbench AR-15 Project : A Step-by-Step Guide to Building Your Own Legal AR-15 Without Paperwork

Build your own multipurpose AR-15 suitable for plinking, hunting, collecting or home defense. By following the simple plans in this book to finish a commercial lower receiver, you can have a rifle that will accept a variety of upper receivers – from .22 LR to .50 BMG – and does not require government registration.

The AR-15 Complete Owner's Guide
The AR-15 Complete Owner’s Guide

Provides the prospective, new or experienced AR-15 owner with the in-depth knowledge he or she needs to configure select, operate, maintain and troubleshoot his or her rifle. The Guide covers the history, applications, details of components and subassemblies, operating, cleaning, maintenance and future of perhaps the most versatile rifle system ever produced. Photos and illustrations.

The AR-15 Complete Assembly Guide
The AR-15 Complete Assembly Guide

This is the second volume in the “AR-15 Guide” series. Detailed b/w photos show step-by-step how to assemble every part of this rifle. Tips, tricks and pitfalls are noted throughout.

How To Shoot Your M16/AR-15 In Training And Combat
How To Shoot Your M16/AR-15 In Training And Combat

Here is the U.S. Army’s progressive training program for the M16 rifle, used to prepare soldiers for combat-type exercises. After a briefing on the weapon’s operational characteristics, it covers firing positions, zeroing, rapid semiauto and full-auto shooting, suppressive and “quick fire” techniques, engaging moving targets, principles of night firing and more.