View Full Version : Need more info on Colt 22

11-25-2010, 8:24 AM
I have a Colt 22 (I think it's a Lightening) that I inherited from my grandfather's estate quite a few years ago, and it's been sitting in the deep dark recesses of my gun safe. I wanted to get some more info on it so I can decide if I want to try and sell it, or keep it as a family heirloom for my son.

I need to give it a good cleaning. The action is pretty gummed up and the barrel is fairly fouled as well as some external pitting. My G'Pa wasn't real well known for keeping on top of cleaning his guns. But everything appears to work, although the receiver does have some slop in it.

Any information you guys can provide will be greatly appreciated.

Stamped on the barrel is: "COLT'S PT.F.A.MFG.CO.HARTFORD CT.U.S.A. Patented May 29 Sept 1883 May 26 85. June 15 86 Feb 22.87" and the gun is serial number 20383.


Mike A
12-12-2010, 7:08 PM
This is a Colt Lightning Magazine Rifle or "CLMR" as Colt had it on the ctgs. that were specially made for the series. These small frame .22s are the most common, the center fire "Win 1873" cartridge medium frame versions in .32WCF, .38WCF, and .44WCF are the second most common, and the large frame model in .40-60, 45-60, 45-85 (I think just a different loading of the .45-70 Govt.) and 50-90 are rarish. The first common pump rifles. Several companies now make replicas of the medium frame version for CAS shooters (I've heard varying reports of the quality of those....).

I believe that the .22s were mostly made in .22 Long, but not .22LR, which was only invented later. Some may be .22 Short only; a very few were supposedly made in .22 Extra Long, too.

A good collector's item especially since it has family associations.

You could find out a LOT more from a Colt long arm nut by posting these pix and the markings including serial number range on the Colt Long Guns subforum of www.coltforum.com Serious collectors of "Lightnings" over there, I suspect.

I'll check my NRA book to see if I have a takedown and maintenance summary there.