With a gunshow going on in Boise this weekend, it just seems sort of "natural" to write a gun piece this morning, and one could hardly find a better subject than a gun that's considered the "Cadillac" of the 357 Magnum world. I'm not overly fond of snakes as a rule, but THIS one has been a coveted item since its introduction in 1955, but as of 1999, it is no longer being made.
If a handgun could be "elegant", it would have to be the Colt Python. They virtually had their own little shop within the Colt plant in Hartford, Connecticut.........where every part was hand-honed and fitted. To this day, its precision fit and velvet-smooth action are unmatched in the gun world, and though they are "pricier" now than ever before, they are still much sought-after. This particular gun is 1979 vintage, but has been fired so seldom, you'd never know the gun was that old.
When you pull the hammer back on one of these, it feels like it's floating in grease! The finish is deep & rich.....the balance is excellent. This gun is a "class act." There was some sort of "snake-charmer" running around Colt at the time, because they also made a 22 & 38 version called the "Diamondback", and today they make a 44 caliber gun called the "Anaconda". But it was the Python that got all the extra shop attention during construction, and even today, it's still "the one to have", whether you want to shoot it, or just keep it locked in the safe as an investment.
But it'd be a shame NOT to shoot one every now and then because they shoot as good as they look, even in the Idaho wind. The Python was a favorite in the 60's & 70's for cops that could afford them (they weren't "taxpayer-issued" to local police or Highway Patrols).
A distinguishing feature of the Python, is the ventilated rib atop the barrel, which not only kept the barrel cool in-between shots, but also prevented the little "heat waves" from interfering with your "sight picture." (a few other guns have now copied that feature). With the coming of the "speedloaders" the Colt's capabilities are only limited by how many pre-loaded carriers you can pack along with you.
But in 357 Magnum caliber, ONE round is usually more than enough!
And it gives all new meaning to the old term of getting "snake-bit!"