How To Read Colt Serial Numbers?

Have you ever dreamed of one day being able to read the serial numbers of a Colt revolver? Well, dream no more! With this easy guide, even an amateur can become an expert in reading the mysterious codes on a Colt. Don’t be fooled, though: it ain’t easy. You’ll have to put in some hard work and dedication if you want to become a Colt-reading pro! So if you’re ready to start your journey into the world of deciphering serial numbers, buckle up and get ready for the ride – we’re about to learn how to read colt serial numbers.

At first glance, reading a Colt serial number might seem like an impossible task. But don’t worry – with this guide it’s easier than ever before! The good news is that all Colt revolvers are marked with a unique number that identifies them. This means that you can use this code to trace the history of your gun and find out when it was manufactured.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s dive into the secrets of colt serial numbers and unlock the mysteries buried within them!

What Is A Colt Serial Number?

It’s no coincidence that the history of Colt guns is as long and illustrious as it is. It was only a matter of time before people began to question exactly how to read Colt serial numbers. What are they, and what do they tell us about the firearms in our possession?

Colt serial numbers are unique codes assigned to each firearm produced by Colt Manufacturing Company. The numbers are typically located on the gun’s frame or receiver, but can also be found on other parts like the barrel or grip. Each code consists of letters, numbers, and/or dashes that represent information specific to the gun in question.

The numbers provide valuable insight into when and where a gun was built, whether it has been recalled, and more. However, there’s a bit more to deciphering them than meets the eye – it requires knowledge of Colt’s serial number format. Without this understanding, it’s impossible to make sense of what these codes reveal about our firearms.

Colt Serial Number Format

Colt serial numbers are an important part of gun identification. It’s essential to understand their format in order to read them. The serial number will appear on the right side of the barrel and is usually engraved or stamped into the metal. It consists of a combination of letters and numbers, typically 8-10 characters long. The first two characters indicate the year of manufacture. The remaining characters consist of a unique set of letters and numbers that helps identify a specific gun. To make sense of this information, it’s important to know what to look for when reading Colt serial numbers. First, identify the year from the first two characters and then use that information to determine the model based on any additional identifying features such as caliber or barrel length. With this knowledge, you can accurately decode Colt serial numbers and understand more about your firearm. Now armed with an understanding of Colt serial numbers, you can move on to discovering when it was manufactured and what model it is.

Year Of Manufacture And Model Identification

Gaining knowledge about Colt serial numbers can be a mysterious journey, like uncovering an ancient artifact. This section will shed some light on the topic and decipher what year of manufacture and model your Colt is.

First off, there are three ways to determine the year of manufacture and model identity: by serial number range, frame size, or markings. Serial numbers are usually found on the left side of the gun’s frame, just below where the barrel meets the frame. If a gun has no serial number, it was likely made before 1968. To help identify a specific model of Colt firearm, you must understand the numbering system used by Colt to denote year of manufacture and model type.

By understanding this system, you’ll be able to gain insight into when your Colt was manufactured and what specific model it is. So let’s get started! With this information in hand we can move onto the next step in our journey: Colt serial number prefixes.

Colt Serial Number Prefixes

Colt serial numbers have prefixes. Prefixes identify the year of manufacture and model. They can also provide information about the specific weapon. For example, a serial number with the prefix ‘AR’ indicates the weapon was made in 1971 or after, and is an AR15 rifle model.

Other common prefixes include ‘CET’ for marine corps rifles and ‘KAC’ for civilian production rifles. Knowing the prefix helps narrow down the exact year of manufacture and model identification. It’s important to note that Colt’s serial numbers overlap between models and years, so it’s important to be aware of this when researching firearms.

The first two letters indicate the year and model while the remainder of the code indicates production sequence on that particular day from a specific factory. The code will also contain a suffix which gives more details about caliber, barrel length, finish, etc. Understanding these codes is key for collectors to accurately assess their firearms value.

Colt Serial Number Suffixes

Suffixes are the last two characters of a Colt serial number. They identify the model and type of firearm. Common suffixes are: C, D, G, M, N, P, S, U, V and X. A “C” suffix indicates a Colt Commander pistol while an “M” suffix means it is a Colt Government Model pistol. An “N” suffix denotes a Colt Double Eagle while an “X” suffix indicates it is a Colt Concealed Carry pistol.

Colt serial numbers also have variations in their suffixes. For example, a “C” could be followed by other letters such as “LB” for lightweight or “BB” for blued steel finish. These variations help to identify the specific features of the firearm. Knowing this information can be useful when looking up parts or services related to a particular gun.

Understanding Colt’s serial numbering system helps decipher its firearms’ history and origin quickly and easily. It’s important to remember that some guns may not follow the standard pattern due to modifications or repairs done after they were originally made. With knowledge of prefixes and suffixes though you can begin to build your own understanding of how these weapons fit into their historical context. Next we’ll look at where to find Colt serial numbers on their firearms.

Colt Serial Number Location

Colt serial numbers are a mystery to many, yet they can tell us much. They can be found on the back of the gun’s receiver or on the bottom of the grip, nestled in plain sight. But to truly understand them, you need to locate them and then decipher their meaning.

Locating Colt serial numbers is simple enough – they’re usually either at the back of the gun’s receiver or at the bottom of its grip. The receiver is where all the major parts are held together and it’s often marked with a serial number for identification. Meanwhile, the bottom of the grip is another common place for manufacturers to put serial numbers on handguns and rifles.

It’s important to note that not all guns will have serial numbers in these places; some may have them hidden elsewhere. However, if you look closely you should be able to spot them. Once you’ve located your Colt serial number, you can begin to decipher its meaning so that you can gain insight into your gun’s history and provenance.

Deciphering Colt Serial Number Stamps

Colt serial numbers can be tricky to decipher. But with a little knowledge, you can figure out the model and year of your Colt firearm. Stamps are used to mark the serial number on most Colt firearms. These stamps may appear as either raised or indented letters and numbers.

The first two characters of the Colt serial number indicate the model type. The next two numbers indicate the year in which it was made. If it’s an older model, then you’ll need to find other stamped letters and numbers that follow the date code to identify it further.

For example, if your Colt has a serial number that starts with “U6” then it is an 1860 Army percussion revolver produced in 1976. Pay attention to any additional markings as they can help you determine if your Colt has been customized in any way. With this information, you will have a better idea of what your weapon is worth and how to care for it properly. Now let’s take a look at colt serial number variations.

Colt Serial Number Variations

Cracking the code of Colt serial numbers can feel like an impossible puzzle. But with a few simple steps, this enigma is easily unraveled.

A Colt pistol’s serial number reveals many clues about its history and manufacture. Variations in the way these numbers are stamped can provide even more detail. Depending on the model and age of the gun, serial numbers may be located on different parts of the frame or barrel. Stamps may appear in different fonts and sizes, and some even feature unique symbols or characters.

The year of manufacture can often be determined by looking at the first two or three digits in the serial number. In some cases, there may be additional markings that give further information about when a particular gun was made. By taking time to carefully examine all of these features, it’s possible to gain valuable insight into a firearm’s past life—and how it got to where it is today.

Colt Serial Number Resources

It’s essential to have the resources necessary to properly read colt serial numbers. In today’s ever-evolving world, knowledge is power and having access to the right sources can make all the difference. To this end, finding reliable colt serial number resources is a must for anyone wanting to gain an understanding of their firearm.

To aid in this endeavor, we’ll take a look at some of the available online tools and websites available. The first is Colt’s website which contains an extensive library of information on their firearms including model numbers and serial numbers. Additionally, there’s a helpful FAQ section that answers many common questions about various aspects of Colt firearms such as date manufactured, type of barrel, and other details.

For more detailed information about your firearm, it may be worth checking out one of the many dedicated forums devoted to Colt guns. Here you can find experienced members willing to offer assistance with any queries you may have. You can also use these platforms to buy or sell vintage models or parts related to a particular make and model of Colt gun.

Armed with these resources, you’re now well-equipped to familiarize yourself with your firearm’s serial number and history. Knowing how it was manufactured and when gives you an invaluable insight into what makes it unique – leading us nicely onto our next topic: colt serial number verification.

Colt Serial Number Verification

Verifying a Colt serial number is not difficult. It’s important to make sure the numbers match with what’s stated on the firearm. First, locate the serial number on the Colt. It should be stamped on the side of the frame or barrel. Once located, compare it to other resources online or at gunsmiths.

Next, look for online resources that can help verify your serial number. There are many websites that provide information about Colt’s history and serial numbers. Also, certain governmental organizations may have records of firearms registered in their databases.

Lastly, if all else fails, contact Colt directly via phone or email and ask them to look up your serial number for you. They will be able to tell you exactly which model it is and when it was manufactured based on its serial number.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Possible To Tell The Age Of A Colt Firearm By Its Serial Number?

Have you ever wanted to know the exact age of a Colt firearm? It feels like an impossibility, right? Well, believe it or not, there is a way to find out! With just a few numbers, you can determine the age of your Colt firearm with ease. It’s almost too good to be true!

It turns out that Colt firearms come with serial numbers – and these numbers can tell us the age of the weapon. While deciphering the information on your own can be tricky, it’s not impossible. All you need is the serial number of your firearm and some knowledge about how Colt weapons are numbered.

For starters, if you’re dealing with an older Colt firearm (made before World War II), then it will likely have a two-digit prefix number followed by four digits. The prefix number can tell us what year the gun was made in – for example, “27” would indicate 1927 as the year of manufacture. If your weapon has a three-digit prefix instead of two, then it was made after World War II ended; this number indicates when production began on that particular model.

TIP: To make sure that you are getting accurate information when trying to read Colt serial numbers, be sure to cross reference data from other sources such as online forums or manuals related to gun collecting.

What Is The Difference Between A Colt Serial Number Prefix And Suffix?

Understanding a Colt serial number is essential for identifying and dating a Colt firearm. In order to do this, it’s important to know the difference between a prefix and suffix.

A prefix is the first part of the serial number and usually indicates the model of the gun. It will usually indicate a 3-4 digit letter/number combination that corresponds to a specific model of firearm. On the other hand, a suffix is the last part of the serial number and typically indicates when it was manufactured or shipped from Colt.

The following are some key points about Colt serial numbers: 

  • A single letter can represent several different models 
  • Numbers can represent dates 
  • Prefixes and suffixes can be combined for more accuracy in determining age

When reading a Colt serial number, it’s important to remember these key points to help you accurately identify when it was made. Understanding both the prefix and suffix will provide insights on when your gun was shipped from Colt or otherwise manufactured.

Are Colt Firearms Still Made Using Serial Numbers?

Colt firearms are a classic and beloved American gun brand with history that dates back to 1836. Today, millions of Colt firearms are still being produced with serial numbers. In fact, over 16 million Colt firearms have been manufactured since the company’s founding.

Serial numbers are an important part of firearm production and help keep track of each individual weapon. Colt firearms still use serial numbers to this day, allowing consumers to identify their weapons by the unique number assigned to them. Serial number prefixes and suffixes also help distinguish specific models of guns and the year in which they were made.

Using a serial number on a Colt firearm has its benefits: 

  • It allows you to easily track your firearm’s history 
  • You can access repair or replacement parts and service for your firearm 
  • You can register your gun online with ease 

Knowing the serial number of your Colt firearm is beneficial for both safety and convenience purposes. With this information, you’ll be able to properly care for and maintain your gun for years to come.

Is It Possible To Find The Original Owner Of A Colt Firearm By Its Serial Number?

Finding the original owner of a Colt firearm by its serial number is like searching for a needle in a haystack. It’s an arduous task, but not impossible. With some research and detective work, it can be done.

First, you need to find out what year your gun was made. The serial numbers on Colt firearms are unique, so you can use them to look up when the gun was manufactured. Once you know that, you’ll have a better idea of who the original owner might be.

Next, use resources such as the National Rifle Association (NRA) or the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) to search for information about the gun’s history. There may be records available that list who owned it at what time. If all else fails, contact Colt directly – they may have additional info on file.

With enough effort and dedication, it’s possible to uncover clues about the original owner of a Colt firearm by its serial number – though it may take some time and investigation to do so.

Are Colt Serial Numbers Unique To Each Firearm?

The mystery of the colt serial numbers unravels like a labyrinth; each one offering its own unique story. But are these numbers really as exclusive as they ought to be?

The answer is yes. Every Colt firearm has a specific, identifiable serial number that is assigned when the gun is manufactured. This number can tell you when and where it was made, which model it is and even who the original owner was. It’s a great way to track a gun’s history and learn more about its past.

So, if you ever find yourself in possession of an old Colt firearm, don’t hesitate to take a look at its serial number – you never know what secrets it might reveal!


I had always been curious about how to read Colt serial numbers. After researching the subject, I was able to find some answers. It is possible to tell the age of a Colt firearm by its serial number, as well as find out if it is still in production. Likewise, it can be determined whether or not the original owner of a gun can be found using its serial number. Lastly, Colt serial numbers are unique to each firearm and cannot be used for another model.

This discovery has given me an appreciation for the history and craftsmanship that goes into every Colt firearm. It’s amazing that such a small detail can hold so much information and provide insight into a weapon’s past. Even more impressive is how this tiny detail can reveal so much about a gun’s history and heritage while also connecting us with those who have owned it in the past.

It’s ironic how such a tiny detail can hold so much power and importance when it comes to understanding a Colt’s past and present. The knowledge I gained from researching this topic gives me an even greater appreciation for these weapons, allowing me to appreciate them in ways I never thought possible before now.

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