I Want That

Not long into our friendship, we discovered a shared interest in single action revolvers. His was a Ruger Blackhawk (Old Model) .357 Magnum. Mine were Colt SAAs (2nd Generation) in calibers .357 Magnum and .45 Colt. As soon as he laid eyes on my Colts, he became covetous. Many times he said, “Sell me one of your Colts: either one.” Of course, my answer was always, “Nope, ain’t gonna happen.”

One fine spring day while I was still on crutches he came by and said, “Put on your boots. You need to get out in the sunlight. And get both your Colts out too.” He had permission to shoot “gophers” (actually ground squirrels) on a nearby ranch. The place was truly infested with the little varmints, and we shot away lots of my .357 and .45 handloads that afternoon. Jim intermittently pleaded, “Sell me one of these.” And I always said, “Never.” In those years between the end of 2nd Generation production and beginning of 3 rd Generation production, you couldn’t just walk into a gun store and buy a Colt SAA off the shelf.

One Saturday in 1976 Jim and I drove to Bozeman, Montana, and as usual perused gun stores. In the Powder Horn on Bozeman’s main street, we were looking over the used gun racks for anything of interest. A fellow walked past us and I, ever being observant, noticed the grip of a Colt SAA sticking out of the fellow’s front trouser pocket. So, I sort of followed him and eavesdropped as he spoke to the store owner behind the new handgun counter. He wanted to trade his Colt SAA .45 for a S&W .357 Magnum. The store owner said he wasn’t interested.