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  • Writer's pictureT. Logan Metesh

Rolls Royce Has Nothing on Rock Island

Updated: Oct 10, 2020

colt, buntline special, revolver, gun collector, rock island
Colt Buntline Special (courtesy RIAC)

Recently, Rock Island Auction Company published a blog post detailing the 15 most expensive guns they've ever sold over the years. To put it into perspective, the "cheapest" gun on the list sold for $540,500. All told, those 15 guns add up to more than $12 million!

One of the guns on the list, which tied for the 14th spot, was a Colt "Buntline Special" Single Action Army Revolver that has been called "genuine in every respect," "one of the finest known," and "an excellent example of one of the most difficult and rare of all Legends of the American West firearms to acquire" by some of the biggest names in the gun collecting community.

colt, buntline special, revolver, gun collector, rock island
Custom flip-up rear sight

Built in March 1880, this revolver was fitted with a 16-inch barrel, custom front and rear sights, and a skeleton shoulder stock. It is one of 18 factory-documented Buntline Special revolvers, and one of just 10 fitted with a 16-inch barrel. It has been in a variety of high profile collections over the years and was even on the cover of American Rifleman magazine's January 1976 issue.

colt, buntline special, revolver, gun collector, rock island, nra, american rifleman
January 1976 issue of American Rifleman magazine

As I previously mentioned, this gun is Number 14 on the RIAC list. Why did I choose to talk about it, instead of one of the three guns that sold for more than $1 million each?

Well, here's why I chose the Buntline Special:

colt, buntline special, revolver, gun collector, rock island
Logan Metesh holding a Colt Buntline Special worth more than $500,000!!!

Back in 2016 - in a previous life - I had the opportunity to catalog a large collection of firearms in an estate. One of those guns just so happened to be the Buntline Special mentioned here! It was just one of the priceless guns in the collection, but it was one of the few that I got a picture with!

Rolls Royce Phantom - more affordable than a Colt Buntline Special!!

For those of us who actually have to work for a living, it's hard to imagine holding a gun that cost more than a brand new Rolls Royce Phantom - which has a base price of $450,000. Pfft. Chump change.

Or, if cars aren't your thing, you could buy two brand new homes in Las Vegas or four brand new homes in Akron, Ohio for the same amount as this Colt Buntline Special! They say real estate is a good investment, but I think I'd rather have a 401(gun).

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