M1917 Revolver

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Smith & Wesson M1917 Revolver (Military issue with lanyard ring) - .45 ACP. Note the ejector-rod socket, common of a Smith revolver. Also note the S&W style cylinder release latch and half-moon front sight. These are the most easily distinguishable external differences between the Colt and S&W versions.
Colt M1917 Revolver (Military issue with lanyard ring) - .45 ACP. Note the unsupported ejector rod - common of Colt revolvers of the period, as well as the Colt-style cylinder release latch and blade front sight. Smooth walnut grips were used on all WWI issue Model 1917 specimens

The M1917 Revolver was a six shot revolver, chambered for the .45 ACP round - a rimless round that required half (or full) moon clips to load the cartridges. During World War One, the official side arm of American forces was M1911 Government .45 Automatic, however supply shortages forced the U.S. Army to ask two Major Gun Manufacturers, Colt and Smith & Wesson to each update their existing Commercial heavy frame revolver and each build a version that could be fielded as a supplement to the standard M1911.

Colt already had an offering to the military, their M1909 heavy revolver, but it was chambered for the antiquated .45 Long Colt round. They re-chambered the revolver for the newly adopted .45 ACP round (calling the commercial variant "the Colt New Service Revolver"). Smith & Wesson re-chambered their own Second Model .44 Hand Ejector revolver as well.

Thus there are TWO versions of the Model 1917 revolver that are externally very similar, one built by Colt and one built by Smith & Wesson.

Smith & Wesson continued the M1917 with the Model of 1950, later renamed Smith & Wesson Model 22 and Smith & Wesson Model 25.

The M1917 Revolver and variants can be seen in the following films, television series, video games, and anime used by the following actors:



  • Weight: 2.5 lb (1.1 kg) (Colt)
  • 2.25 lb (1 kg) (S&W)
  • Length: 10.8 in (274 mm)
  • Barrel length: 5.5 in (140 mm)
  • Cartridge: .45 ACP, .45 Auto Rim
  • Action: double action, solid frame with swing-out cylinder
  • Muzzle velocity: 760 ft/s ( 231.7 m/s)
  • Feed system: six-round cylinder, loaded singly or with two three-round half-moon clips
  • Sights: blade front sight, notched rear sight


Title Actor Character Note Date
Journey's End Colin Clive Capt. Denis Stanhope Colt 1930
Ian Maclaren Lt. Osborne Colt
Gun Crazy John Dall Bart Tare Colt 1950
Halls of Montezuma Reginald Gardner Sgt. Johnson Colt with pearl grips, in shoulder holster 1951
Paths of Glory Kirk Douglas Colonel Dax S&W 1957
Amphibian Man (Chelovek-Amfibiya) Mikhail Medvedev Zurita's boatswain Colt 1961
The Oil Prince Stole Arandjelovic Prince's henchman Colt 1965
El Dorado Robert Mitchum Sheriff J.P. Harran Colt Model 1917 modified to look like a Colt SAA 1967
Farewell, Friend Alain Delon Dino Barran S&W 1968
Farewell, Friend Charles Bronson Franz Propp S&W 1968
Farewell, Friend Olga Georges-Picot Isabelle Moreau S&W 1968
Battles Without Honor and Humanity Hiroshi Hatano Police 1973
Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia Kris Kristofferson A biker S&W 1974
The Great Gatsby Scott Wilson George Wilson S&W 1974
Raiders of the Lost Ark Harrison Ford Indiana Jones Shortened S&W 1981
Batman (1989) Jack Palance Carl Grissom S&W 1989
Mulholland Falls Michael Madsen Det. Eddie Hall Colt 1996
Last Man Standing Thugs S&W 1996
The Newton Boys Vincent D'Onofrio Dock Newton S&W 1998
The Newton Boys Dwight Yoakam Brentwood Glasscock S&W 1998
The Mummy Cory Johnson Mr. Daniels Two Colt revolvers 1999
American Soldiers: A Day in Iraq Iraqi police officer S&W 2005
All the King's Men (2006) Mark Ruffalo Dr. Adam Stanton S&W 2006
The Spirit Eva Mendes Sand Saref S&W 2008
The Good, the Bad, the Weird Jung Woo-sung Park Do-won S&W 2008
The Good, the Bad, the Weird Henchman S&W 2008
Captain America: The First Avenger Neal McDonough Timothy "Dum Dum" Dugan Colt 2011
Fury Brad Pitt Staff Sergeant Don "Wardaddy" Collier S&W 2014
Hacksaw Ridge Hugo Weaving Tom Doss S&W 2016
Hacksaw Ridge Andrew Garfield Desmond Doss S&W 2016


Show Title Actor Character Note Air Date
The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles James Handy Det. Frank Brady S&W; Ep. "Spring Break Adventure" 1992-1994
The Lost Battalion Jay Rodan Lt. Leak Colt 2001
Agent Carter Neal McDonough Timothy "Dum Dum" Dugan "The Iron Ceiling" (S01E05) 2015
Westworld Ben Barnes Logan Colt 2016

Video Games

Game Title Appears as Notation Release Date
Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine Colt 1999
Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb Colt 2003
Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault S&W 2004
Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth S&W 2005
Forgotten Hope 2 Colt 2005
Sniper Elite III S&W 2014
Heroes & Generals Colt 2016

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