After nearly 150 years of swinging off every bad hombre’s hip, the Colt Single-Action Army revolver remains among the most recognizable firearms in the world.
There is good reason for this.
Partly it is a testament to Hollywood, who has shipped America’s Wild West and all its law and bad men to every corner of the globe. But there are other factors that have propelled the humble wheelgun to icon status.
Simply put, the sixgun is reliable as an old paint hoss, tough as boot leather and as potent as rattlesnake venom. And, thankfully, these assets are still readily available in brand new single-action revolvers patterned off the old Colt’s original design.
Uberti has, perhaps, one of the most extensive catalogs of revolvers based off the Colt SAA. And it is a catalog that continues to grow like mesquite.
Recently, the Italian company announced the expansion of its Horseman series of revolvers to include two new calibers, each with three new barrel lengths.
The Colt 1873 replica originally came chambered in .45 Colt and .357 Magnum. But shooters can now buy the revolver in a .44 Magnum and .22LR models. Each comes with the option of 4 ¾-inch, 5 ½-inch or 7 ½-inch barrels.
The gun cut the same figure as the 1873, boasting walnut grips and blued finish. It is case hardened and comes outfitted with a blade front sight. But the 2.3-pound revolver has kept up with the times with some practical modern tweaks.
Perhaps, the most notable modification Uberti has made is the addition of a transfer-bar safety system. Simply put, the system is a piece of steel that goes between the hammer and firing pin when not being fired to prevent a negligent discharge.
The lack of such a safety back in the Wild West led many gunslingers to load their sixguns with only five rounds. The hammer on an empty cylinder was a precaution that helped keep a simple fumble of the gun from turning into a fatal incident.
While not as long or heavy as its double-action cousins, Uberti has tightened up the Horseman’s trigger more than the average single-action. The result is a smooth pull and a crisp break, all facilitated by a wider than normal trigger.
Uberti offers much more affordable versions of SAA than many on the market. The Horseman’s MSRP is $559. And with improved manufacturing, the company’s firearms have won some new fans in recent years.
Of course, the Horseman has some stiff competition with Colt still manufacturing single-actions and Ruger having built a dedicated following for its wares – just to name a few. But the company has obviously stumbled on to something, given it does not appear to riding off into the sunset anytime soon.