This week on Wheelgun Wednesday I am delving into a good old Colt. It feels odd to me to think that this will be my second Colt-related Wheelgun Wednesday and I only own one Colt. The one I have and did an article on is the Colt Police Positive Special. This time around I had the chance to work with my friend’s Colt Single Action Frontier Scout 22LR revolver. Let’s dive right into it!
Rimfire Revolvers @ TFB:
Background Information: Colt Frontier Scout 22LR
In 1956, Colt brought back their Single Action Army from a 15-year hiatus. This second generation of the west’s favorite gun was pretty expensive though retailing for around $125 (roughly $1215 today). How was a dad supposed to get his kid a cool single-action revolver that he sees in his cowboy movies?
The Colt Frontier Scout was born in 1957 and was made until 1970 when Colt carried on with their Peacemaker 22 and then later a “New Frontier Scout”. The Frontier Scout was scaled down slightly and was lighter than its bigger bore brother. This specific example is from 1959 according to Colt’s serial number lookup and also a giveaway is the “F” suffix at the end of the serial number.
In the time between 1957 and 1970, Colt made some different variations of the Frontier Scout. These variations were mostly finishing differences and a few different grip styles. A majority of the initial Frontier Scouts seem to have had black plastic grips but this one has walnut which was another offering at the time and is more desirable today although only with a box and factory letter.
Specifications: Colt Frontier Scout 22LR
The breakdown of this gun is pretty straightforward if you know single-action revolvers. Open the loading gate, put the hammer in half-cock, load, close, and then full cock to fire. The weight is very comfortable and the hammer is smooth to operate. More in-depth specifications are below:
- Years Produced: From 1957 to 1970
- MSRP In 1957: Roughly $50 ($433 in 2021)
- Chambering: 22 Long Rifle
- Barrel Length: 4 3/4 or 9 1/2 Buntline
- Overall Length: 10.5 inches from heel to crown
- Weight: Roughly 1lb 7.3oz
- Trigger Pull: 3lbs (This Example)
- Action: Single Action
- Capacity: 6
- Front Sight: Fixed Front Ramp
- Rear Sight: Top Strap Groove
- Grip: Walnut or Black Plastic
The Colt Frontier Scout was marketed for around $50 which is about $435 today. That’s a pretty big difference front the real deal SAA and that price is about what they are worth today on the used market. When these guns were shipped out front of the factory they were packaged in layered cardboard boxes with wood grain and the Colt logo in gold on the top. The interior was packed with green or black paper and would include some sort of instructional booklet or manual and a warranty card. Check out what Colt had to say about the Frontier Scout in the original manual excerpt below.
Your Colt Single Action Frontier Scout is one of the most simple, rugged and dependable handguns ever manufactured. Used correctly it will serve you indefinitely without ever requiring major repairs. Before handling or shooting your Single Action, BE SURE to read this sheet and carefully note the precautions listed. These precautions, though important, are simple, and correct handling will quickly become automatic with you. The precautions apply to EVERY single action revolver and are dictated by the inherent mechanical structure of ALL handguns of this type.
A curious bit of note is that at the very end of the Frontier Scout’s manual, it specifically mentions that you should not fan your Colt revolver. Fanning, to those who may not know of it, is the act of holding down the trigger while using your off-hand to repeatedly pull back and drop the hammer. The manual says that revolvers must be professionally tuned for this and that doing this with your Colt revolver could result in unsafe conditions and “unsatisfactory shooting”.
Range Time: Colt Frontier Scout 22LR
Range time with the Colt Frontier Scout was very enjoyable, to say the least. I love single-action cowboy-style revolvers because they have a way of making you feel youthful. I would wager that most guys wanted to be a cowboy when they were younger.
The action was very smooth. Not super butter light as can be smooth but smooth like a Colt should be. I even brought my Ruger Wrangler so I could check off dual wielding from the bucket list. Spoiler alert dual wielding single-action revolvers is tough. Comparing the two is like exact opposites in terms of feel. Do not get me wrong, the Wrangler is a good gun but my point is that it is so very noticeable that the Frontier Scout was made back when a sense of care was injected into a gun as it came off the assembly line.
I apologize that my little accuracy test is hard to decipher. It was the end of a range session and the target was an already used one so the group test was a little impromptu. I used some CCI Quiets which I am sure did not compliment the twist rate very well and the group was sporadic, to say the least. Otherwise, we had hit metal spinner targets with some normal high-velocity ammo earlier that day.
Final Thoughts: Colt Frontier Scout 22LR
The Colt Frontier Scout is an excellent, well-made little 22. It is a great starter piece for the new Colt collector or even just an easy shooter for the cowboy inside all of us. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to work with this gun because of a really good old friend of mine. He recently inherited the revolver from his grandfather.
I hope you guys enjoyed the rundown on the Colt Frontier Scout today. Big thank you to my friend Mike for sharing his Grandfathers revolver with me and allowing me to have some range time with it. That is much appreciated! Till next time, what do you guys think? Let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below! We always appreciate your feedback.