Now the sixgun in front of me at Buckhorn had what appeared to be a King Hammer. While I wasn’t looking for a .38 Special Single Action, I was strongly tempted to buy this sixgun just to get the hammer; I actually told the guys about the importance of this hammer. I go to Buckhorn several times a week; every time i have, i have always looked at it, but i have never succumbed to the temptation to buy it. I finally decided to take the plunge, walked back to the store, looked in the case, and off we went!
However, something has happened that proves once again that it pays to live well, or at least to try to do so. I stood there stunned when I was presented with the king’s hammer. The guy who bought the .38 Special Colt didn’t like the “funny” hammer, so Matt replaced it with a correct period hammer and told the boys to give me the King hammer. I immediately put Diamond Dot to work baking extra cookies for them! One of my more expensive Colts is a special early 2nd gen .44 with washed out housing colors, worn bluing on the ejector rod housing, barrel cut to 4-3 / 4 ″ and one-piece Pau Ferro inventory that my friend Tony made more than 40 years ago. The king’s hammer fell perfectly and the action worked perfectly.
I am not a child of the Great Depression, although my parents were and I learned to save things. You never know when a part will be needed. I don’t remember when I first encountered the phrase Parts Box, but I’m sure it was in Skeeter Skelton’s early writing. Skeeter often wrote about building custom Colt single actions using parts he had on hand, and his fictional character Dobe Grant had a massive amount of brand new Colt parts, including every cannon and cylinder imaginable. I paid attention and started to assemble my own box of parts. Gun shows are more than gun shows; coins are normally plentiful and it is not too hard to find something reasonably priced which can be used by someone someday. I have never owned a registered pre-war Smith & Wesson .357 Magnum and, at today’s prices, I probably never will. However, at the last gun show I attended, what should I find if not an original 8-3 / 4 ″ Magnum registered cannon. It’s now in my box of barrel and cylinder parts waiting for the right time to build a custom Smith & Wesson.