I have been a Skeeter Skelton fan ever since he started writing gun articles. I can remember, many years ago, reading an article that he did on the .44 Special cartridge. I had never owned a .44 Special but that article changed all of that and I’ve never been without one since then. However, in this article he also had a photo of about the coolest single action I’d ever seen. It was a 4 3/4-inch Colt New Frontier with ivory stocks. I was in love and lust, all at the same time.
Colt first introduced the New Frontier in 1961. Essentially, it was a flat-topped Colt Single Action Army with an adjustable rear sight. This was very much like the early Colt’s (called Flat Tops) that they had made among the first generation of Colt Single Actions. Colt manufactured the New Frontier in several calibers and barrel lengths, all with a tall front sight and an adjustable rear sight. The first run of New Frontiers were built from 1961 to 1974. Then, probably at Skeeter’s urging, they again built them from 1978 until about 1982. Well, the good news is that the good folks at Colt are at it again.
In 2011, they announced that they were bringing the New Frontier back out. And, at the 2011 SHOT Show, we got to shoot a prototype of the gun. Well, they are in production now. I have just received a 4 3/4-inch .45 and a 5 1/2-inch .44 Special for testing. And I’ve got to tell you that these are a pair of good looking guns. In fact, they are as classy looking as any single action that I’ve ever seen from Colt. The guns are offered in these two calibers and these two barrel lengths, with the addition of the 7 1/2-inch barrel, too.
I’m writing the guns up for the American Rifleman magazine. And, in the next few weeks, will be putting quite a few rounds downrange with these beauties. I’ll keep you posted on how they shoot and perform.
Skeeter Skelton’s spirit may be hanging out in the Florida mountains, of New Mexico, or down at a certain bar in Palomas, Chihuahua. But, wherever he is, you can bet that he’s smiling.
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