Ready to Strike: The New .38 Special Colt Cobra – Full Review.

The new .38 Special Colt Cobra delivers a new take on a classic snub-nosed revolver.

We all have a story to tell about or involving a Colt revolver. I’m no exception; in fact, the very first handgun I purchased with my own money was a Colt Lawman. That .357 Magnum, 4-inch barreled gun served as my introduction into shooting IPSC in the late 1970s. My dad has a story of his own, which he is quick to tell. In the mid-1960s, he purchased a Colt Trooper from Massey Hardware in downtown Conway, Arkansas. He bought it for his father, who was stationed in the Philippines while serving in the Veterans Administration. Feeling that his dad needed something for personal protection, he gave him the Colt Trooper, which served him until he passed away a few years ago. My father got that iconic revolver back in the estate, and it has naturally become a family heirloom. Why are stories like these, involving Colt revolvers, so prevalent? I believe these guns spawned legacies because they were more than just the parts that went into them; they represented unparalleled American craftsmanship in an era when national pride was still a shining virtue.

The stainless steel finish of the Colt Cobra ensures durability and ruggedness.

Return of the Cobra

Get ready for a new generation of stories, because Colt is bringing back the Cobra. Its all-steel frame is satin finished, with a grip that’s been moved rearward to help manage recoil. The new Cobra sports a Hogue OverMolded grip. The only chambering currently offered is .38 Special +P. Another modification has been made, this one to trigger geometry. It appears that the trigger pin is more centrally located, and the trigger itself is straighter. The cylinder release is still old-school original; it is pulled rearward to unlock the cylinder. The front red fiber optic sight is an insert that can be changed, as it is set into a recess in the barrel shroud and then secured by an Allen screw through the front. The rear is a groove milled into the topstrap of the frame. The cylinder revolves clockwise, like a Colt should. Of course, this revolver has a rampant Colt on its barrel.

The Colt Cobra holds six rounds of .38 Special ammunition, despite its compact dimensions.

The revolver features a generous ejector rod despite its short barrel as well as a full underlug.

A Little History

According to our friends at Revolvy, the first model of Cobra was made from 1950 to 1971 with a 2-inch barrel. The second version was produced from 1972 to 1981 and can be identified by its shrouded ejector rod. The Cobra was a version of the Colt Detective Special, and both were made on Colt’s “D” frame. The Cobra’s frame was constructed of aluminum alloy rather than the all-steel construction of the Detective Special.

You could get the Cobra in .38 Special, .32 Colt New Police, .22 LR, and a few were produced in .38 S&W. You could choose between 2-, 3-, 4- and 5-inch barrels.

The Cobra was made infamous when Jack Ruby used a Colt Cobra .38 to kill Lee Harvey Oswald on November 24, 1963. That Cobra was purchased for $220,000 at an auction in 1991. Lee Marvin carried two Colt Cobras while playing Detective-Lieutenant Frank Balinger of the Chicago Police Department on the TV series M Squad.

Fans of Colt revolvers have been clamoring for a new model for years, and the Colt Cobra addresses that desire.


  • Chambering: .38 Special +P
  • Barrel: 2 inches
  • OA Length: 7.2 inches
  • Weight: 25 ounces
  • Grips: Hogue OverMolded
  • Sights: Red fiber optic front
  • Action: Double-action
  • Finish: Stainless steel
  • Capacity: Six
  • MSRP: $699


The little Colt Cobra arrived in an innocuous brown cardboard box. It was quite a pleasant surprise to open the cardboard box up and see the familiar blue plastic Colt box inside, securing the new Colt Cobra revolver. It was clearly the gun I remembered seeing at the 2017 Shot Show (click this link to see our coverage from SHOT Show 2017). While manipulating the trigger on the gun, I was impressed by just how nice the trigger felt. The Hogue OverMolded grips were nicely adorned with the Colt emblem embossed on each side of them. As I looked the gun over, I realized that Colt must have come to believe that their customers are actually adults, as the gun had no key lock, nor were there endless admonishments to read the instruction manual (and avoid running with scissors) inscribed on the gun. Upon inspection of the insides of the Cobra, it became apparent that this was a complete redesign. Colt, much like many other gun companies, has gone with MIM parts. When they were making revolvers 40 years ago, labor was cheap and technology was expensive. In 2017 the costs are totally reversed, and hand-fitting would make the new Cobra a $2,000.00+ gun instead of a $699.00 gun.

Article continued below:

Excuse Me, I Have a Few Questions

From the moment I found out that the Colt Cobra would be reintroduced and that there would be updates and changes made, I had a few questions running around in my head. After I received the gun and had a chance to shoot it for a while, the people at Colt were gracious enough to let me rapid-fire some questions about the new Colt Cobra at them. I’ve done my best to summarize my questions and their answers verbatim, below.Where is the new Colt Cobra produced? Is it produced by Colt 100%, or has Colt partnered with anyone else?

Q. Where is the new Colt Cobra produced? Is it produced by Colt 100%, or has Colt partnered with anyone else?
A. We are building all Cobras right here in our factory in West Hartford, Connecticut.

The Cobra features a transfer bar safety that ensures the revolver will only fire when the trigger is pulled.

Q. Why go with a .38 Special over .357 Magnum?
A. For a return to the double-action (DA) revolver market, a market we have a long and storied history in, .38 Special makes a lot of sense. A big part of the DA revolver market is small frame, and that market is full of high-powered, lightweight models. Many times, small-frame revolvers are suggested for new shooters because they’re easy to handle and dependable. But what we’re seeing today is that when a new shooter goes to a gun shop and selects a small-frame revolver that’s lightweight and chambered in .357, they might buy a box of ammo and take it to the range once and lose their taste for it after just a few rounds. The .357 Magnum cartridge in a compact, lightweight package can be punishing. So, they pack up their new purchase, along with the rest of the ammo, and park it in their safe. When that same customer takes a Colt Cobra to the range, with its steel frame and revised grip structure, they’ll have a much more pleasurable shooting experience, and they’ll be inclined to shoot more often, and more importantly, feel confident enough to carry it.

Q. The New Colt Cobra is heavier than its namesake, as the original was made with an aluminum frame rather than steel. What is the reason for this, in this day of superlight guns?
A. As you know, the original Cobra shares its heritage with the Colt Detective Special, and the new Cobra draws upon the same lineage. The design work began where the last generation of Detective Special, the SF-VI, left off. We worked hard to ensure that if the market wants more Colt DA revolvers, the Cobra design would be flexible enough, and robust enough, to handle future model variations that customers may want.

Q. The original Cobra had numerous options/variations; will we see these or similar guns coming?
A. The Cobra was designed to be a family name. If we see the type of success with this model that we hope to see, it will be an easy transition for us to expand on the theme and develop additional models that will appeal to other customers.

The relatively generous length of the ejector rod helps facilitate the ejection of spent cartridge cases.

The Cobra shot well with both loads tested, including this Sig Sauer Elite Performance load.

On the Range

To prepare for my trip to the range, I pulled down that box of holsters that all gun guys tend to have and undertook my best effort to find something that the Colt would fit. I was able to find a DeSantis belt holster and a speed loader without much effort that seemed to be made for the Cobra. As I began rummaging through my stockpile of ammunition, I realized that I had sufficient quantities to really do more than just accuracy testing with the Black Hills 125-grain 38 Special +P.Once I was equipped with all the necessary gear, I strapped on the Colt, loaded up my speed loaders and speed strips, and headed to the range.

The first six rounds through the gun were impressive; the double-action pull seemed to roll predictably. The Cobra was easy to control, with a very soft recoil. The trigger on this sample was perfect; I checked the pull on my Wheeler Digital Trigger Gauge, and the single-action breaks at just over 2 pounds, while the double-action is a consistent 7 pounds. This trigger is worthy of the name Colt, and honestly, it is every bit as good as that of the last Python I shot.

I ran the gun both strong hand and weak hand. The pace slowed, but not nearly to the degree that some revolvers I have run required to score accurate hits. I did some 12-round drills that required a reload, which was easy enough, with no difficulty with the controls. However, it showed my lack of skill with revolver reloads using speed loaders or strips. Clearly, I am a fan of moon clips!

Accuracy was impressive. Once I learned where the sights needed to be pointed to deliver the shot where I wanted it to be, it was dead on. I found that rather than splitting the dot, I needed to cover it; otherwise, I tended to land a little low.

I made a mistake on taking ammunition to the range and only had two brands to test with the Cobra. They both produced very nice groups double action with a two-handed grip at 10 yards.

The author was impressed by the design, operation and performance of the new Colt Cobra.

The Bottom Line

This gun is a winner. The trigger is excellent right out of the box and the sights work, not something that is true of many snub-nosed revolvers. No need to change the grips, but you could if you wanted and the same can be said of the front sight. I can recommend this gun without reservation, something I can’t say about all compact revolvers. I predict we will see lots of variations soon from Colt and I am excited for where Colt is finally going.

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  • Burt December 8, 2019, 8:05 pm

    I do like the Colt 38 spcl Night Cobra, 6r. I found many positive features. It is my choice for EDC for my own unique needs. The grips “do not” stick to clothes. Three down sides were the grips had a very light white bleach stain, but might darken with gun cleaner and gun oil. The pain on the hand is prominent after practicing. In comparison a competitor in the Taurus 38, the Taurus grips resulted in no hand pain at all. However, on the Colt as an EDC, since not using it much, pain on the hand is of little concern, because in a real emergency of 1-6 shots, there is no pain in the moment, and even if shooting 40-50 rounds, pain dissipates over a week. The one concern I experienced was the cylinder latch button lever is loose, it works fine but shakes when I touch it. I hope to take it to my favorite dealer, and or call Colt to see if it needs to be sent for a check and repair, which I need to learn is an OK thing to do and more than worth the investment of time, work, and possible be free repair, if it even warrants the need for repair. Out of the box, there was one inner internal scratch, not noticeable until one opens the cylinder, in a spot where it would not affect function, so I did not mind, it added character like a body scar. I did notice some of the black paint stripped off just outside and near the cylinder but on the left side of the body, along an edge, very slightly noticeable, after one month, and only using it at a range once, which I thought would have occurred one year into it. Still I did not mind that. Aside from that, very satisfied with the weight balance, look, feel, functionality and fit. After steel, I will never go back to aluminum, as I like the weight. There is minimal recoil on this Colt. Like they say about changing the oil and washing your car, clean your weapon, and oil it, and it will return in its work. Someone else said if Darth Vader had a 38 snub, this would be it. Perhaps Batman as well.

  • Mark Sharef February 13, 2019, 12:46 pm

    I own a Taurus 605 and the Colt is head and shoulders above it. I handled one at my local gun shop and all I can say is WOW! on the trigger pull. I can believe it’s two pounds on single action. Am I an expert on trigger pull? Sort of, I suffer from MD and am slowly loosing the use of my hands (legs, arms, ect.) . An all steel 38sp works for me because I can still hang on to the gun. I almost slapped down my credit card right then and there, but I’m married so I’ve been saving up for it. As for the finish, I carry concealed. So who will see it? GRIN

  • ALBERT BASTA October 8, 2018, 2:47 pm


  • James Cottrell April 19, 2018, 5:13 pm

    Well, after reading all this, I know now why the older S&W and Colts are demanding higher prices than the new models.

  • David April 7, 2018, 11:48 am

    Just got my Colt Cobra 38. Ordered it in June of 2017 took 10 months.

  • Bob December 29, 2017, 5:21 am

    Good review. I’m just confused about one thing. How come you were able to rotate the cylinder after having pulled back the hammer into single action mode shortly before the three minute mark ? I must of missed something because that doesn’t look healthy. Thanks , Bob

  • Lynn Warner Dornan December 4, 2017, 10:57 pm

    As a new Police Officer back in 1969 after graduation one of the first things was the purchase of an off duty gun. Since the department required we carry a S&W or Colt revoler. Cost being a factor for a rookie making $7,800 a year a new Cobra for $69.00 dollars was my first off duty gun. Was a lot easier to conceal than the S&W model 10 with 5” barrel. Served me well for many years.

  • Lee December 4, 2017, 10:42 am

    Come on Colt with the Python’s already… We want new Pythons…

    • Big John December 4, 2017, 12:14 pm

      Never gonna happen, Colt left most of the Python tooling in the old Colt building in the area where US Patent/US Firearms was making their SAA’s. When US Patent/US Firearms went out of business it all went to the scrapper. There still are some jigs that survive at the East Hartford plant in the testfire area but they look rusted beyond salvation. Additionally Colt isn’t even accepting old Pythons back to the factory for repair because A) They are out of most of the parts…and more importantly B) Most if not all of the Colt employees who could actually “time” them are gone. If Colt ever does produce another gun with the “Python” name it will be another whored out version like the new Cobra and you probably wouldn’t want one. Sorry for the bad news.

    • KBSacto December 4, 2017, 1:03 pm

      I would welcome the same. My hope is that Colt does so and builds them with the same care and quality of the older Pythons, Anacondas and the like. Excellent suggestion.

  • Kenneth Keough December 4, 2017, 9:15 am

    Massey Hardware, what a magical place that was! As close to time travel as you could find in Faulkner County. Sadly, it’s passed into history, but I’ll never forget the smell of fresh peanuts roasting or the coal-fired potbelly stove in the center of the lower showroom and the classic mini-tiled entryway and doors. Thank you for reminding me of such wonderful memories from my childhood! Truly a local historical site, and missed by all who knew it.

  • Big John December 4, 2017, 8:53 am

    “Q. Where is the new Colt Cobra produced? Is it produced by Colt 100%, or has Colt partnered with anyone else?
    A. We are building all Cobras right here in our factory in West Hartford, Connecticut.”

    HORSESHIT… Colt mislead you with their verbage. ALL of the parts for the Cobra are contracted out and made off site, they are just assembled at the factory. Additionally the reason their triger pulls are all over the map is no one left at Colt has any in-depth revolver tuning knowledge. Most of Colt’s Institutional Memory is long gone through either retirement or lay-offs. Some of their best now work at Standard Mfg./Connecticut Shotgun.

    Things like this happen when you hire a VP from Sony Entertainment to make your critical decisions.

  • Lewis barnes December 4, 2017, 7:34 am

    I stopped buying 38’s years ago and I’ll tell you why. First, I buy 357 magnums because they are heavier, but most important they will shoot 38’s, 38+P, plus 357. I always practice with 38’s, but when I carry it is 357 or 38+P, ususally 357. They hold their value better than 38’s and are heavier, plus the heavier gun creates a lesser kick.

    • Dickweed December 4, 2017, 8:42 am

      Wow too bad you can’t read and comprehend

      • Mike December 13, 2017, 10:14 pm

        Too bad you will be under-armed in a life or death gun fight with a .38.

  • DmomesticGunDealer December 4, 2017, 7:07 am

    Seems as though you are a Colt fan boy! This revolver is of the same quality as a Taurus 85. The fit and finish of this gun is crap. The trigger is absolutely horrible. For Colt to come up with this gun as a namesake….holy shit….are you kidding me….wow Colt….what a shame.

  • SteveK December 4, 2017, 6:58 am

    Nice gun, ugly finish!

    • Linda Damiano June 5, 2020, 5:56 pm

      I think the finish is ultra-cool !

  • Ed December 4, 2017, 5:57 am

    Bring Back the Diamondback !!!

  • Richard October 19, 2017, 12:10 pm

    Are you guys at GUNSAMERICA interested in pictures of a Colt Cobra NRA special edition that has not been released to public??
    It was sent/sold to me from large online dealer unaware of the specially designed NRA wood grip with etched picture of cobra snake. I have pictures of handgun. I spoke with customer service rep at Colt. He said it was a fluke that I got this NRA model, it has not been officially released but a batch accidentally shipped out. I’m not sure how many are planned to be released, but according to the rep it is a special low quantity release.. Email me and I can forward pictures,,,

    • Ed April 20, 2018, 7:51 pm

      I was looking to buy a Colt Cobra any information would be helpful


  • Sam August 20, 2017, 8:17 pm

    I just picked mine up and the trigger pull is 9 lb 13 oz in double action and 4 lb 7 oz in single action. I was encouraged by the pull experience you had but yours must have been worked on to get the pull weights you claim. I’m looking forward to some range time with it but, frankly, the trigger is not that good nor is the fit and finish. This is my 2nd Colt in 2017, the first was a Delta Elite that had quality problems from day one. It’s gone now and I don’t miss it at all. I hope the Cobra fares better.

  • ejharb July 20, 2017, 8:04 pm

    I’ll be buying 2 of these for my sweetie the wheelgun gal.

  • Orrin M. Knutson June 27, 2017, 11:59 am

    Dear Sir,

    I have an original Colt Cobra that was made in the 1950’s. It was my backup and off-duty weapon since I bought it used in the 1960’s and it has never failed me or jammed. Now old and retired, it is my wife’s preferred concealed carry, and we both love to shoot it just for fun.

    We are confident our antique Colt Cobra will serve our children and perhaps our grandchildren and great grandchildren as well.

    As Col. Sam Colt wrote, “Be not afraid of man or beast, that walks beneath the skies … When danger threatens, call on me and I will equalize!”

    Orrin M. Knutson
    Peace Officer Retired
    Survival Trainer and Author


  • Frederik Flintstone June 27, 2017, 11:21 am

    I’ve been hearing hype about this gun since late 2016. It is June 27, 2017 and it is still not available anywhere. Reminds of the giant software companies and their “vaporware” products. Looks good in the pictures and magazine/internet reviews, but does it really exist?

    • D. E. White August 4, 2018, 1:36 pm

      I just bought one yesterday.

  • Russ H. June 27, 2017, 12:26 am

    All this negativity – 38’s a weak caliber, why isn’t it aluminum, a Python, an Anaconda, a 3″, a 4″, a 5″, a 357, blah, blah, blah. Nothing wrong with 38 special (especially with +P) and if you want something else, buy it! I’m very happy Colt brought this back and frankly I wish they would bring back ALL their old revolvers (same for S&W). I’ve got a blue 2″ 1980 Detective Special and a blue 6″ 1980 Python. They are awesome. Same for my little S&W mod 60 38 five shot. I like revolvers as they have personality HOWEVER, most of my handguns are pistols (14 total). So I get it.

    It’s just a drag when a company comes out with something new, particularly an icon, and it’s nothing but complaining for the most part. Keep them coming Colt!

    • John Clemons February 19, 2018, 10:05 pm

      The trigger pull needed some work. I am not happy with sharp edges on trigger guard. Otherwise we’ll proportioned revolver. Like the 6 rounds. 38 round is more than enough with +p. Don’t need 357 magnum

  • Charlie June 26, 2017, 10:16 pm

    I have had several of the lightweight Smith-Wesson revolvers. Great to carry brutal to shoot when using the +P loads. Great to see a Colt with the heavier steel frame.My only concern is the compressed metal parts ( trigger ,hammer) instead of the machined ones on the original Colts. My experience with these parts is that they are a little gritty and not as smooth as solid metal parts. In all I may try one when the price becomes more reasonable.

  • PaulWVa June 26, 2017, 8:25 pm

    While the gun world seems to be all about the automatic pistol these days and I have some nice shooting autos…I do love me some revolver. I’ve lost count of the Colt, Rugers, and S&Ws I’ve owned over the years. I really wish I some of those Colt’s back today…I’d be a lot richer. This new Colt Cobra looks like a nice piece and wears the name well. I think one would fit nicely between my S&W 638 Airweight Bodyguard and my old school S&W M-13, 3″ RB, .357. Yeah …I want one…but the price seems a little steep at $699.00. I don’t see anyone reducing the price of Colt’s. By comparison …I recently purchased the S&W 638, NIB, $419.00 and Sig 320 sub-compact for $485.00. That $200-$300 will buy a lot of ammo.

  • Paul June 26, 2017, 6:57 pm

    Glad to see the come back! And if you read the article, thanks for saying it looks like my Detective Special. Mine is Nickel though, which I prefer! Also, what is with the take off on Pachmyer grips?

  • DON SCHIMPFF June 26, 2017, 4:45 pm

    The original Colt AGENT is a nice gun-i have 1- But the 3″ barreled Detective Special is the finest handgun, for personal protection, that I’ve ever seen. They should make it again . And they are RARE. I believe that they were never cataloged. It is the perfect frontal fanny pack gun. I may “take it with me”

  • DON SCHIMPFF June 26, 2017, 4:36 pm

    EVEN BETTER THAN THE COLT COBRA is the original DETECTIVE SPECIAL with a 3″ barrel Better balance and longer sight radius.

  • David June 26, 2017, 3:28 pm

    Glad to see Colt offering the new Cobra. Though I’ve owned only S&Ws, I’m a ‘revolver guy’ and definitely will look at the Cobra. It’s great to see that Colt and Kimber are offering 6-shot revolvers in concealable sizes; wish S&W would return the 6-shot K-frame snubby. I also prefer a .38+P to a .357 for a carry gun this size, and don’t fault Colt for the caliber. Learned my lesson trying to shoot .357s in my J-frame, and now just pack .38s.

  • PETE OSTERGARD June 26, 2017, 2:42 pm

    I bought a Colt Cobra back in 1965 when I heard I was going to `nam. Had my dear ol’ grey haired Mother ship it to me as soon as I had an firm address. Carried it a tour and a 1/2 and it came in quite handy on several occasions. Sweet little pistol, for sure! I had to leave it there when I rotated as this type of thing, along with ammo, disarmed hand grenades, M16s and disassembled M60s were sneaking out of country on a regular basis. I think I got quite a bit more for it than I paid. I just might buy another, just for old time sake.

  • Ed June 26, 2017, 12:49 pm

    Good Lord guys, Colt does the unthinkable and comes out with a revolver and all you hear is complaints. Why is the finish matte, why didn’t they use an aluminum frame, why didn’t they issue it in .357 magnum??? Colt’s made a big business decision and it’s their dough taht’st risk. Don’t like, don’t buy it. Buy a Smith & Wesson.

  • Bobo June 26, 2017, 12:16 pm

    Back around 1974 I bought the colt detective special which is still my carry gun today. It has some holster wear and is probably in need of new grips but after much practice for a snub it’s pretty accurate. This little wheel gun is my choice since I don’t have to worry about jams and all that other stuff which autos may suffer from.

  • Randy June 26, 2017, 11:29 am

    I used to have a colt cobra back in the day as a backup gun and it was a very accurate gun and very reliable. Glad to see a come back by Colt but the only problem is that the price is a little high compared to Smith& Wesson’s new ultra light 38 at 499 that makes the Colt 200 more and consumers look at or for brand name bargains.

  • FirstStateMark June 26, 2017, 11:25 am

    Thanks for the article. The only thing that keeps me from buying that gun is the dull matte finish. Make the same gun in a nice
    deep Colt blue and I’ll take it.

  • Retrocon June 26, 2017, 10:50 am

    Meh. Wake me up when say “Python.”

    • Lon June 26, 2017, 2:02 pm

      4″ Anaconda. Only then will I open the wallet for another Colt.

  • Alex June 26, 2017, 10:36 am

    Holy Crap…I read the whole article and all the comments so far and the word “Python” only came up once. You guys are slipping.

    • Alex June 26, 2017, 10:38 am

      Disregard….more comments popped up as I was writing the above.

      • matthew martinez June 26, 2017, 4:20 pm

        Nobody has cried about price yet though i may have to scroll down more. Looks like a handsome gun to keep in the fishing bag though.

  • George Hollingsworth June 26, 2017, 10:12 am

    I owned the 3 of the snake guns. Cobra was the great carry piece. Light. I would like to have seen it in the original aluminum. only in Like a dummy I sold it years ago. I just replaced it with the Ruger LCR 9 when the Colt made it in steel . I have been a Colt fan all my life. Workmanship is unsurpassed. I would sell the Ruger in a second if I found the early shrouded Cobra.

    • Tricia June 26, 2017, 1:12 pm

      I have the original Colt Cobra Agent Aluminum Alloy 38, mfg in 1977. Has the shrouded ejector (making it the 2nd edition). I’m a woman and I love this revolver. Fits my hands perfectly and is light weight enough to carry, but I’ve been looking at Kimber Micros to replace it for carrying because they are so much lighter and slimmer, but just can’t make the switch.

  • W.P. Zeller June 26, 2017, 9:58 am

    The real next question about this gun: When do we get the New Model Diamondback?
    There’s never been a better revolver for smaller handed shooters such as women. We have used my ’79 Dback in our Women’s Intro classes in the past and it does better than do the K frames- shorter trigger reach. You can always deal with too short, but not too long.
    Let’s hope Colt ups the finish quality a bit, too. I don’t expect Master Blue but still, this “Cobra’s” finish is pretty dreary.
    There are a number of Colt small-frame .38s in the house here, but in the end, the one that goes for a ride in the big world most often is the Agent, the dull-finish version of the real Cobra. 20 ounces loaded with 158s, a scant three ounces heavier than a loaded 642.
    The Detective Special here is the older, “pencil” barrel one and goes 25 ounces loaded (who cares what an empty gun weighs.. you don’t put it in your holster or belt empty, do you?) and sometimes that’s a little much for non-belt carry.
    I suspect the new “Cobra” will be about the same.
    But the best news inside this article is the trigger pull. Colt didn’t quite get the SF stainless series trigger right- I have a DS-II that’s no better than okay, and the Magnum Carry I had was better but not sensational. This new design appears to be more where it should be.
    And to the .357 issue: yeah, well, I had the Magnum Carry but after shooting it with .357 Gold Dots in a darkhouse shoothouse I never loaded it with .357s again for defensive purposes: the flash and concussion alone was self-defeating.
    Leave the .357s to longer barrels where they belong.

  • William L Tiewater June 26, 2017, 9:54 am

    I read you Email every time I receive it, I enjoyed your Stories and review’s and look forward to them. I have only one Comment. Colt is the Premiere Firearm maker in the History. I personally Believe The Colt 1851 is the most beautiful firearm ever produced. I am one of the Nations Senior Citizen, But I am and avid reader. In my early teens I read about the Different Gun Smiths in the late 1800 that were doing conversions to make it possible to use black powder Cartridge’s in the Percussion Pistols. I have Dreamed of owing one. but Economic reasons restricted my opportunity to own one of the percussion colts in the second release in the late 20th century. Keep up the good work. I would encourage Colt to re investigate the market to determine to the Idea of returning the “The Snake guns manufacture in the near future, I am a big fan of the perfect balance of the Colt Python . There is a definite market. Again keep up the good work. William Tiewater

    • jmg169 June 26, 2017, 11:37 am

      Here, here. Hoping this is the start of the return of the Colt snake guns to the market. I’d love to see the Diamondback in a nice 3-gun set of 4 or 6″ models in .38, 22LR and .22WMR, hopefully to be followed by the Python. It will be interesting to see what Colt does next.

  • robert June 26, 2017, 9:49 am

    I agree with the comment above regarding the answer from Colt as to why they didn’t make this in .357 magnum is utter nonsense. Before they stopped making revolvers they made a Lawman (.357 mag) with a 2″ barrel. With advances in metallurgy, they should certainly be able to make a lightweight D frame in 6 round .357 mag to compete with the lightweight S&W J frame 5 round 357 magnums. Also they should make a Centennial type concealed hammer as the exposed hammer is a huge disadvantage in concealed carry draw, prevents it from being able to reliably fire through a pocket or purse and a liability in a self defense situation when the perp claims you cocked the hammer on him before you fired. Also, I always liked the looks of the Detective Special (my first gun), and Python (my third gun – a Colt Combat Commander was my second gun) but by changing the grip length and barrel, they made it real ugly – it now looks just like a Taurus.

  • BigC June 26, 2017, 6:55 am

    If that was the real reason Colt made this gun in 38 Special, I think it[‘s beyond ridiculous!! You do realize that 38 Special can be fired in 357 Magnum chambered guns……..right? I think they missed the boat.

  • John McPherson June 26, 2017, 6:43 am

    Wondering if you could comment on grips for this gun. Will wood grips for previous Colt models fit?

  • Zorro June 26, 2017, 6:12 am

    Looks like a charter arms for a whole lot more money – and who wants heavy, big, bulky, outdated, .38spcl caliber either – yawn waste of time reporting on this dead out of the gate no one wants revolver …

    • SW June 26, 2017, 9:04 am

      Just what I thought ,a .38 Really ?? Colt didn’t think this out too well. Why anyone would want a .38 over a .357Mag. is beyond me ? Think they wasted a lot of effort on a gun that probably won’t sell good. And the price is WAY Too much for me to consider.

  • Big Guy June 26, 2017, 5:45 am

    I wish Colt & Smith&wesson would revamp and reintroduce a 100th Anniversary Model 1917, in .45 ACP. With barrel lengths of 2,3,4,5 & 6, a 6 shooter using half moon or full moon speed clips or redesign the cylinder with internal clips as Charter Arms did. Call it the 1917 Combat or Marine model. Probably get the interest of soldiers, police and home defense and doesn’t recoil as strongly as the .357 Magnum and a little more than a .38 Special but they are a hard hitter with ball or JHP bullets.

  • John June 26, 2017, 4:59 am

    That was a non-answer to why it’s not aluminum. I have an original Cobra and it is a sweet handling revolver. Much nicer than my airlite J-frames. I would buy a light weight Cobra rated for +p preferably with a shrouded hammer, otherwise, no thanks.

  • Scott June 26, 2017, 4:17 am

    Gun looks like a Charter Arms product. I don’t care for j-frames because of capacity and weight … there aren’t enough bullets and the j is just 15 oz. The LCR is the same story. So I carry a Charter Arms ”Police Undercover” because it’s over 20 oz and holds SIX rounds. I am very interested in the Cobra for these very same reasons. Regardless, the MSRP is $670, which means the gun will actually settle in at around $525 retail. I’ve never owned a Colt, but that may change when the initial hype cools down.

  • Dave June 23, 2017, 10:08 am

    It’s nice to see Colt woke up and is back in the game. For how long we will see. I think it’s too little too late. They should have been making the Magnum Carry, Detective Special, and the Cobra (light weight) right along. I have gone to carrying the S&W J-Frames. Since I carry Two at all times I don’t feel the need to run out and buy Colts for $699 to get one more round. Thanks but, no thanks.

    • kimberproSS June 26, 2017, 9:31 am

      They are located in the People’s republic of Connecticut and buckled to the political pressure of the anti-gun crowd, concern for class action lawsuits on gun manufacturers, thanks to Clinton. It is a shame they caved and stopped making civilian firearms, revolvers. Now we will see if the name can pull them back.

  • Mark N. June 21, 2017, 11:56 pm

    38 is a bit light for a defensive caliber. I read a story of a woman in Ohio (as I recall) who shot a home invader who had chased her and her children up to the attic. She fired five times and I seem to think that she hit him five times before he decided he’d had enough and left the house. sure he ended up dead, but it took a long time for that to happen.

    In any event, I like the DA pull weight, and it is a nice looking gun, but I’d like to see it with a bit more barrel, say somewhere between 3 and 4 inches. The MSRP is a bit rich for my bank account but in line with what others charge. I wonder if Colt will decide to sell this in California. Currently there are NO Colts on the roster here, but it is not too difficult to qualify a revolver.

    • Cory June 26, 2017, 9:04 am

      I remember that story as well. The problem was that she used jacketed round nose, because that was all she had at the moment. Also, 2 of her 5 shots were in non-lethal areas. However, it likely SAVED HER LIFE, regardless of how “ideal” the weapon and ammunition were for self-defense. The best gun is the one you have when you need it.

      Thank God I Had a Gun: True Accounts of Self-Defense Paperback – February 1, 2014
      by Chris Bird

      • Kimosabe December 4, 2017, 5:10 pm

        You sir are very correct. I served on a jury many years ago that involved a fellow who was shot twice by the “lowly” .25ACP. One shot (they think the first) entered under the right armpit and transited through the right lung to puncture the heart. The second shot entered at the base of the skull and ended in the soft palate in the mouth. The coroner testified that EITHER shot would have been fatal. So much for the authorities who say one caliber or another is too weak. A well place bullet (even a pellet gun) will kill you if the round finds vitals.

  • Liberal George June 21, 2017, 12:04 pm

    GOOD ARTICLE!I have the 3.8Det. Spl. owned by my Uncle Pete, a small- town deputy sheriff in the 1940s. Accurate? Not hardly.

  • Robert Smith June 20, 2017, 11:12 pm

    I am about the same age as Mr. Hodoway and I too remember the 60’s / 70’s when the Colt D frame and their Smith & Wesson brethren K frames were the Glocks of their time. Tradition and nostalgia are important for a lot of gun enthusiasts. I hope it turns out to be a commercial success for Colt – they need one. I personally would like to see Colt revive the big old New Service in .45 Colt. Smith & Wesson does this same kind of thing with their “Heritage” series, and they usually have no trouble selling them.

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