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Old 02-14-2013, 11:42 PM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Default Colt Police Positive vs Official Police

Someone asked on the site, but since my login isn't working I'll post it here. The main difference between the Police Positive Special and the Official Police is the size - the PPS is much slimmer and lighter than the Official Police. It's hard to tell the difference in a picture but very obvious in the hand. The plain Police Positive has a shorter cylinder that won't accomodate the .38 Special, which can also be a visual cue. One of the best ways to tell the difference is the slimmer grip with more pronounced forward curve on the Police Positive.

Here's a good comparison.

http://www.coltforum.com/forums/colt...ples-pics.html

I also snapped a picture of my Police Positive Special (1935) and Official Police (1941), but the forum is giving me trouble uploading it. Suffice to say because they were made a few years from each other, all the features are the same, so you can't rely on things like the type of grips or checkering on the topstrap to tell them apart.
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Old 02-15-2013, 12:02 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Some more random thoughts about pre-WW2 American DA revolvers of the era, since the questions prompted me to bring my collection out:

-The Detective Special is just a short-barrelled Police Positive Special.

-The Colt Official Police is really just an improved model of the Army Special. In fact, when they made the same changes to the Police Positive, they didn't bother changing the name. It was all marketing, when it was clear the Army wasn't buying the Army Special but it sold well to police.

- The S&W Military & Police fits nicely between the Police Positive and Official Police in terms of size - the Official Police is bulkier enough that I readily believe Colt's marketing that it could shoot the .38 High Velocity load S&W said not to use in the M&P.

-The S&W Mk.II Hand Ejector is a big gun, but not nearly as big as the Colt New Service. I don't think anything else made in the era compared to the bulk of it.

-I don't have a S&W Regulation Police (or .32 Hand Ejector, the earlier model), but I suspect it was a pretty small gun indeed. It only held 5 .38 rounds, and the Colt Police Positive with 6 is a very compact gun already.
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Old 02-15-2013, 02:55 AM
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funkychinaman funkychinaman is offline
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Yeah, that was me that asked. I was hoping there was a way to make the ID using the gun alone. After, you probably won't get a convenient screencap of the two guns side by side.

Is the cylinder release the same size on both pistols? Maybe it's possible to make an ID based on the size of the gun in relation to that.

Hmm, I always assumed the DS was a shortened OP. Thanks.
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Old 02-15-2013, 03:37 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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No, they're in proportion to the rest of the gun. Just going by eyeball on mine, the only parts that might be interchangable are the screws.
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Old 02-15-2013, 03:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nyles View Post
No, they're in proportion to the rest of the gun. Just going by eyeball on mine, the only parts that might be interchangable are the screws.
Oh well. (And that just seems really inefficient from a manufacturing standpoint.)
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Last edited by Jcordell; 04-02-2013 at 03:17 PM.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:18 PM
Jcordell Jcordell is offline
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Quote:
Oh well. (And that just seems really inefficient from a manufacturing standpoint.)
You nailed it. As I've gotten into collecting both S&W and Colt handguns I've come to realize that S&W has always been a better run company. More efficent, better organized, less chaotic in it's product development and output. Colt has made some great guns over the years and in some aspects better than S&W, but Smith is just tighter. Even in the bad old Bangor-Punta days in the seventies and eighties S&W was a better run company. Also S&W has better relationships with the fans. Colt tends to be a little more distant and harder to get info out of.
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:51 PM
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Spartan198 Spartan198 is offline
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Colt has a long, storied history and they're proud of it. But the thing about such pride is that it's easy to confuse with elitism and snobbishness.
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