Colt Diamondback

The Colt Diamondback is a revolver manufactured by Colt's Manufacturing Company of Hartford, Connecticut, in calibers of .22 LR and .38 Special. Inspired by the successful Colt Python, the Diamondback was manufactured from 1966 to 1988 and was available in barrel lengths of 2½, 4, and 6 inches.

Colt Diamondback
.22 caliber Colt Diamondback revolver with 6" barrel
Place of originUnited States
Production history
ManufacturerColt's Manufacturing Company
Mass(.38) 21/2" 26oz; 4" 28.5oz.; 6" 30.5oz.; (.22) 21/2" 28.5 oz.; 4" 31 oz.; 6" 33 oz.
Length2½", 4" or 6" bbl.

Cartridge.22 LR, .38 Special.
Feed systemSix-round cylinder
SightsRear adj.; front ramp


Colt introduced the double-action Diamondback as a deluxe model in 1966.[1] It has a wide serrated target hammer, ventilated rib, fully adjustable target quality sights, and full-length barrel underlug.[1] It is a 6-shot revolver with a swing-out cylinder and was available in blue or nickel finishes.[1] Visually, the Diamondback resembles a scaled-down version of the Python, though the action was not tuned as finely as the Python, nor did it receive the Python's Royal Blue finish.[1][2] While the Python is built on Colt's "I frame," the Diamondback is built on the smaller "D frame," as used in the Detective Special. The Diamondback was dropped from production in 1988.[3]

Because of the light recoil of .22 caliber ammunition, the .22 version of the Diamondback can be used as a training gun for novice shooters. It had gained popularity with gun enthusiasts due to the inexpensive price of .22 caliber ammunition and since it has been discontinued, for its rarity.[4]

In addition, the Diamondback was marketed to law enforcement agencies who did not allow the use of the .357 Magnum cartridge.[1]


Cultural References


  1. Fjestad, S. P. (2016). Blue Book of Gun Values. Iola, Wisconsin: Blue Book Publications. p. 212. ISBN 978-1-936120-60-4.
  3. Sapp, Rick (21 November 2007). Standard Catalog of Colt Firearms. F+W Media, Inc. pp. 116–117. ISBN 978-0-89689-534-8. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
  4. Fjestad, S.P. (August 18, 2015). "Colt's Snake Guns". American Rifleman.
  5. Zucchino, David (April 21, 2003). "From the detritus, clues to character of Hussein regime". Baltimore Sun. And the guns. The guns are one thing ordinary Iraqis might have known about. There was an arsenal in every home. Some bedrooms were supplied with gold-plated MP-5 machine guns. Others were stacked to the ceilings with boxes of Colt Diamondback .38 Specials, .357-caliber Combat Magnums and Sig Sauer pistols, still in their packing boxes, complete with owner instructions and generous supplies of boxed ammunition.
  6. Ayoob, Massad (22 September 2008). The Gun Digest Book Of Concealed Carry. Iola, Wisconsin: Gun Digest Books. p. 133. ISBN 978-0-89689-611-6. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
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