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Colt Python with DW interchangeable barrel
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superdan
Eau Claire, WI
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February 7, 2024 - 6:45 pm
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Thought you guys might enjoy this project I finished a few months ago. 
In July I bought a Stainless 6" Python with a bulged barrel. After getting it and inspecting it for potential cracks or a tweaked frame I jumped online and confirmed that nope I'm not excited about the price of a 2 pin Stainless barrel. I had already given some thought to doing an interchangeable barrel like on a DW. So I started getting to work drawing it up to see if it was possible and confirmed yes it can. Machining out the old barrel was a pain but I got it done, used a standard DW small frame nut from EWK (to use a standard small frame DW tool) and an old damaged 6" (Colt) Trooper barrel. So from concept to shooting hope you enjoy the pictures. I doubt it’s one of a kind but I couldn’t find any examples other than some slight talk of the concept on the internet. 
Torn apart getting ready
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See the bulge?
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Next to a small frame barrel. The “normal” DW locating pin position won’t work.15986.jpegImage Enlarger
Drawn as a solid model proved that the concept would work.16238.jpegImage Enlarger
Part way done, it was very difficult to machine the rifling out with the tooling I had. Would need to rethink how to process it if I ever do another.16236.jpegImage Enlarger
Front end all done it’s a shroud! Ready to machine the frame and get a barrel going. The barrel uses the DW standard 17/32 -40 tpi small frame nut and Colt’s standard 9/16 (.563) -32 thread (2 pin barrel).

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All strapped in for a test fire. I know it’s a fancy setup 😉. I hadn’t shot it since buying it and had a very slight worry that it may have an issue so decided to be safe. Remember it had a bulged barrel.16337.jpegImage Enlarger

Some glamour shots16332.jpegImage Enlarger

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It shot just fine (6 shots @ 15 yards off hand)16338.jpegImage Enlarger

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grumpyoldretiredcop
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February 7, 2024 - 7:09 pm
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That's an outstanding piece of work!  I've heard of "Smolts" (S&W barrel on a Colt frame) and "Smythons" (Python barrel on a S&W frame), but I've never seen anything like this.  Well done!

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Scout728
North Texas
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Steve S.
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February 7, 2024 - 8:16 pm
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That is just TOTALLY AWESOME!!! Congratulations on making a fine revolver out of what someone else would have discarded.  drooldrooldrool

Steve S.

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DA....64
Wisconsin

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605Dart
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February 7, 2024 - 8:39 pm
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That is over and above!!

I love fixing things too I just need some more machinist training for these type of projects.

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SCORPIO
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February 7, 2024 - 9:51 pm
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Great job! You sir have some serious skills. 

Looks like it should have been made that way from the factory.

Anything worth doing is worth doing well.

My father

If a man designed it, and a man built it, then a man can fix it.

My grandfather

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Supermagfan
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February 7, 2024 - 9:57 pm
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A man cannot have too many SuperMags

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superdan
Eau Claire, WI
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February 7, 2024 - 11:32 pm
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Thank you for the kind words. After completing this project and the DW 744 to 745 (45 Colt) conversion this winter the next thought is 41 Special on a medium frame. I am torn between doing a S&W 686, Colt Trooper (or Officers Model Match) or one of the new Python’s. If I did the Python or 686 I’d probably do a DW style barrel again but I’d have to make a custom nut since the small is a little too small for 41 cal (safety concerns) and the large is way too big for the shroud. At this point I’m leaning towards the 686 because I have an extra unfluted cylinder and a barrel but I do like my Colt’s. 

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rwsem
SOWELA (Southwest Louisiana)

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February 8, 2024 - 5:02 am
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Technically, the glass is always full; half liquid, half air....

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Ole Dog
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February 8, 2024 - 7:53 am
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Colt made a Lawman MKIII with a DW type barrel assembly as a prototype. I am the fortunate owner of that one of a kind. Bob Serva of Norwich fame created 36 Revolvers in three frame sizes and 6 calibers with S&W frames and DW barrels assemblies. Before he could start production he sold the company to CZ. There were six of each caliber. 22 LR, 357 Magnum., 44 Magnum, 45ACP, 445 Supermag and one other I am not sure of. Some found their way to Gunbroker and I have a 22,357 and a 44 mag. All are serialized Dan Wesson so there is no record at S&W of them. The shrouds are located by a tang in the top rail instead of a roll pin below the barrel so regular DW shrouds won't fit. 

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3ric
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February 8, 2024 - 11:14 am
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Absolutely love this project you’ve completed! As for the .41 medium frame project you are considering my choice would be either a Colt MK lll or MK V frame. The MK V action would feel a little more like a DW with its shorter hammer throw. Good luck.

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KurtB
Pleasant Plains, Illinois
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February 8, 2024 - 1:13 pm
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Wow I’m super impressed by your gunsmithing skills!  Would you be able (& willing) to make me a 15” barrel for my .357 shroud?  Unfortunately I bought a 15-2 that had 3 bulges in the barrel and had to send it to Bob @ DW.  Bob saved the shroud, but had to destroy the 15” barrel.  I just need another barrel. Thanks for your consideration!

IMG_3745-1.jpeg

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SCORPIO
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February 8, 2024 - 2:44 pm
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Ole Dog said
Colt made a Lawman MKIII with a DW type barrel assembly as a prototype. I am the fortunate owner of that one of a kind. Bob Serva of Norwich fame created 36 Revolvers in three frame sizes and 6 calibers with S&W frames and DW barrels assemblies. Before he could start production he sold the company to CZ. There were six of each caliber. 22 LR, 357 Magnum., 44 Magnum, 45ACP, 445 Supermag and one other I am not sure of. Some found their way to Gunbroker and I have a 22,357 and a 44 mag. All are serialized Dan Wesson so there is no record at S&W of them. The shrouds are located by a tang in the top rail instead of a roll pin below the barrel so regular DW shrouds won't fit. 

  

Wow Ole Dog, those are some rare birds for sure.  You should post a couple pics.

I'm curious why the S&W frames carry DW serial numbers, especially since only the shrouds were DW.

Anything worth doing is worth doing well.

My father

If a man designed it, and a man built it, then a man can fix it.

My grandfather

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DakotaJack
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February 9, 2024 - 4:03 am
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Nice job!  That's some pretty skilled work there.  I don't see any pictures of the actual barrel - what did you use for a barrel inside the "Python" shroud?

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KurtB
Pleasant Plains, Illinois
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February 9, 2024 - 1:59 pm
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DakotaJack said
Nice job!  That's some pretty skilled work there.  I don't see any pictures of the actual barrel - what did you use for a barrel inside the "Python" shroud?

  

I think he said “…an old damaged 6" (Colt) Trooper barrel”.  Incredible feat of skill to do something like this!

IMG_3745-1.jpeg

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Ole Dog
ocala, fl

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February 9, 2024 - 10:10 pm
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Scorpio,i am in the process of adding a gun room to the house. When I move my STUFF in I will take pictures and either learn how to post them or have my pal Snake-eye do it. I have some very rare stuff. Me and Dakotajack, lol. And Willy. 😜. When my gun stuff keeps piling up my wife najes me pack it away. 🙄. She is responsible for starting me on firearms though so she has no one to blame but herself. 

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superdan
Eau Claire, WI
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February 9, 2024 - 11:31 pm
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Yes it was a 6” Colt Trooper that ended up getting damaged when it was being removed. It used to look similar to this. Now it looks just like a Dan Wesson barrel except the frame end is .030” bigger.
IMG_8973.jpeg

KurtB thank you for the kind words, unfortunately I’m not in the business at the moment and have enough other projects to keep me busy. Along with a full time job. Have you contacted EWK to see if he is interested or willing to machine one?

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KurtB
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February 10, 2024 - 10:05 pm
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No problem, I understand!

I have not contacted Eric.  He used to be very active on this forum, but I get the feeling he is NOT making DW stuff these days.  I should probably contact him and find out.

IMG_3745-1.jpeg

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605Dart
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February 11, 2024 - 8:04 am
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Never hurts to ask him, hell of a guy! I needed a LF barrel nut and he met me on a weekend day so I could get the gun up and running!!!

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