1911Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My father told me he heard that Colt is or will be no longer be selling firearms for the civilian market. I told him that it had to be crap but what's the deal? Anyone have any details how this got started?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
382 Posts
Colt rumors

I dont know the details but it gets started every year about this time. Maybe
Colt starts it so their guns will sell faster.

C-Buff
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,480 Posts
the_one_saint, you have minced some words. This is NOT a rumor and was posted, for a time, on Colt's web site when they stopped selling to the public. Colt no longer sells to the public. You cannot buy directly from Colt as a normal civilian in the public. Now, if you are a dealer with a FFL, that is another matter. Colt sells wholesale to the dealers and it is the dealers that sell to the public.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Double Naught Spy said:
the_one_saint, you have minced some words. This is NOT a rumor and was posted, for a time, on Colt's web site when they stopped selling to the public. Colt no longer sells to the public. You cannot buy directly from Colt as a normal civilian in the public. Now, if you are a dealer with a FFL, that is another matter. Colt sells wholesale to the dealers and it is the dealers that sell to the public.

Don't flame me but isn't that how all manufacturer's operate?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,262 Posts
Double Naught Spy said:
You cannot buy directly from Colt as a normal civilian in the public.
Question: Which firearms manufacturer can you buy directly from as a normal citizen?

Answer: None of them.

What makes Colt different in this regard?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,117 Posts
Most people didn't know it, but up until the late 90's you could buy a gun direct from Colt. After the 1968 Gun Control Act, you had to have it shipped to a dealer, but you could still order direct.

The rumors started flying when Colt announced they would no longer sell DIRECT to the public, and Colt failed to follow up and short stop the misunderstanding people had, that Colt was getting out of COMMERCIAL gun making.

I think S&W and Remington make "direct" sales through their custom shops, but the gun still has to go through a FFL dealer.
In other words, I think the customer pretty much deals direct with the custom shops, but the actual order is placed by the dealer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,836 Posts
Colt made a conscious decision to NOT sell any guns in Maryland when they chose not to send a fired cartridge case with their guns. They stated (unofficially but probably accurately) that they were not going to do anything special to keep what they saw as a small market.

Colt has gone through several cycles on the civilian marketplace. In the 1930's they advertised and eagerly sought civilian sales. In the late 1940's and 1950's, they were fat from military WWII sales and police sales and didn't give a darn about civilian sales. That was when S&W began to take their civilian revolver market from them.

Then in the 1960's and 1970's, they became so wrapped up in the AR-15 and military contracts, that they left both their civilian and police business slide, along with quality control. They also missed the boat on the first single action craze, not putting their SAA back into production until it was about over, and dithered around with a .44 Magnum until the "Dirty Harry" era was past. They are now ignoring the lucrative CCW market, while the competition is catering to it with small and light, but powerful, revolvers.

They lost money big time on the atrocious All America 2000 pistol, the Colt equivalent of the Edsel. Their Spanish connections ultimately failed ot provide good quallity small pistols. Ultimately, they were selling so few civilian guns and so few revolvers that they gave up on revolvers entirely (except for the SAA), leaving that market to S&W and Ruger. Their 1911 market declined with their poor quality control until newer makers took over than market to a large extent.

All through this, regular as clockwork, Colt would announce a new owner, new corporate structure, and new emphasis on giving the customer what was wanted. It was all baloney, of course. All the new owners did was milk the company (same story at S&W) and drop QC and customer satisfaction deeper in the tank. Can they come through once again? Who knows? But writing off a chunk of the market out of pique does not seem to be the way to go about it.

Jim
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
20,440 Posts
Although I think Maryland is the least of Colt's concerns, Jim explained it as well as I've ever heard done. Remember, Colt's management don't consider these icons as proudly owned pistols, but as a product.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,480 Posts
You can buy directly from any manufacturer who wishes to deal with all the necessary bookwork to sell directly to the public, as per federal firearms regulations and state regulations. You can and I have purchased directly from Wilson Combat, for example. I paid them and they shipped to the local FFL of my choice. My money went directly to Wilson Combat, not to an intermediary FFL. I bought from Wilson, period. Sorry XTrooper.

Thank you dfariswheel for the clarification and the history. I didn't know the background, but had read Colt's statements that they no longer sold to the public, just to FFLs.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
492 Posts
As recently as two years ago when I wasn't into guns at all (except for a .357 in the nightstand), my impression was that Colt had stopped making 1911's altogether. Yes, I was quite ignorant at the time. Probably as much due to mis-information from the media as it was my own lack of interest.

Then I shot my friend's Colt...and my life changed forever :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
427 Posts
I lost any interest in Colts I had a long time ago. Why buy an expensive 1911 that has zero frills, and then spend a ton of money to get it to where you need it? There is so much other competition that gives you everything you could need or want right from the factory for a decent price. I think the only thing Colt has going for them is there name -- which they've squandered needlessly for many years.




Tedster
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
428 Posts
Colt quality is back. Has been for a few years now, though they don't much advertise, so can't blame you for not knowing. Their whole line up of 1911s is great now. I have two recent production Colts, and they are extremely well made and reliable. They also use higher quality steel componant than either Kimber or Springfield.

It was quite a few years ago that the word went out that Colt was only manufacturing for the military and police markets, and no longer for the civilian market. People rushed out to grab what they thought were the last Colts. This was a false rumor, but believe it or not, many gun stores, to this day, still believe it, and don't stock Colt due to their beleif that they no longer cater to the civilian market. Even those that know it does will tell you, "Colt is getting out of the civilian market, so if you wanted a Colt, you'd better get it now." This is either dishonesty or ignorance, but it happens all the time, even to this day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,262 Posts
Double Naught Spy said:
You can buy directly from any manufacturer who wishes to deal with all the necessary bookwork to sell directly to the public, as per federal firearms regulations and state regulations. You can and I have purchased directly from Wilson Combat, for example. I paid them and they shipped to the local FFL of my choice. My money went directly to Wilson Combat, not to an intermediary FFL. I bought from Wilson, period. Sorry XTrooper.

Thank you dfariswheel for the clarification and the history. I didn't know the background, but had read Colt's statements that they no longer sold to the public, just to FFLs.
Sorry for the misunderstanding. I thought you were trying to say something else entirely, ie, doing business with a manufacturer w/o an FFL holder as a go-between. I too have made purchases as you describe, but I'm also old enough to remember when you could make mail-order purchases of pistols and I thought this is what you were implying. My apologies.
 

·
Super Moderator
EDC: SIG P938.
Joined
·
22,726 Posts
Tedster said:
I lost any interest in Colts I had a long time ago. Why buy an expensive 1911 that has zero frills, and then spend a ton of money to get it to where you need it? There is so much other competition that gives you everything you could need or want right from the factory for a decent price. I think the only thing Colt has going for them is there name -- which they've squandered needlessly for many years.




Tedster
There's nobody giving me what I want, so I continue to buy Colts, blessedly free of "frills", so that I can ultimately have the gun that I want.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
511 Posts
You can hardly blame someone for asking about a rumor, when there are many GUN stores perpetuating the notion. I have heard them from gun stores, myself. Also, I was in a store a few months ago and they told me Colt was going to discontinue the AR-15. Stop selling them. I asked them where they heard that and they said a distributor told them. (Of course, it wasn't true.)

So, the stories are being passed around. People are going to hear and ask.

Steve
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,207 Posts
Why buy an expensive 1911 that has zero frills, and then spend a ton of money to get it to where you need it?
Expensive? A Colt 01991 series gun is about $570.
Frills? Is this a gun or a prom dress? We have someone here who obviously confuses "feature count" with "quality" or "value." ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,239 Posts
Here where I live, I drop in a gun store all the time and always look for any Colts. They never have any. Very few and far between. I asked on of the guys about getting a Colt. His reply to me was, they are selling to gov contracts and have let their civilian market and quality slip. Then tried to sell me a Kimber. As I am leaving, one of the other guys, (one I go to when I am going to buy something) pulls me over and says that the mark up on the Colts is not as high as the Kimbers. Hmmm I thought. Then he said they also got in trouble with Colt becuase people were coming down from NY, buying guns and taking them back to NY to seel on the black market. He said if I had something in mind I really wanted, he could get it, just throught a diff distrib.

Who knows, but I have bought a couple this year alone. And I think their quality has gone way up in the past couple of years too. Gun dealers are like car dealers. Most are full of bull, so if you find one you trust, stick with them.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top