How do I go about ID'ing a Colt MK IV Ser 80 race gun?

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Jan 10, 2006
At my usual open BLM area place practicing yesterday and came into rare contact with another couple of shooters. One mature guy had a nice looking Colt Mark IV, Series 80 race comp gun in .38 super. The slide had no markings beyond the usual Colt factory stuff. This guy had recently gotten it from someone who purchased it at an estate sale in the nearby town of Monticello, UT, 50 miles from us. The action job was exceptional and the gun seemed tight and very smoothly fitted. It had four rectangular open slots atop the comp, which decreased slightly in size as they approached the muzzle. Two vertically positioned openings near the muzzle. Too generic in every sense for easy identification, especially since I've been away from race gun shooters for over 15 years. It was the great action job and overall smoothness that made me think of asking here, or somewhere. I'm not in a position to buy the gun at any price (well if it was $239.99, maybe) but am curious to see what it is, maybe facilitate a win-win situation for seller and buyer. As I say, I'm not well informed about the guy or where it came from, but he wasn't trashy in any way. ???

This guy owns a travel adventure business in Utah, according to his card. I've seen him around before. He's not going to keep the gun. He has no use for it. Don't know enough about him to know why he bought it, etc. I said I guessed the gun was of a quality that he wouldn't want to give it away for $1200. He surprised me by saying he'd be glad to take $1200 for it ! He said the work was supposed to have been done by a gunsmith or shop in Florida and he repeated this as though he was sure. I hadn't looked yet at the gun, so asked if Paul Liebenberg or Pistol Dynamics had been mentioned. He said he didn't think so. The gun is unmarked, and I think Paul's guns are inscribed with Pistol Dynamics on them.

Any clues for the clueless, here?



Aug 31, 2005
Retired Utahn":3b78iyt8 said:
I said I guessed the gun was of a quality that he wouldn't want to give it away for $1200. He surprised me by saying he'd be glad to take $1200 for it !

The first bit of advice I can give you is NEVER pick a number out of the air when you have NO IDEA how much something is worth !! :D

I don't know how much it IS worth, but generally speaking, Colts instantly decrease in value the minute you change them one iota from stock. If this thing is some kind of frankengun with a non-matching slide/barrel/grips, etc, it could be worth around $500 or so. If I had a gun that was worth $500, I'd surely sell it for $1200 too !!. My guess is it's a highly modified 1911 ... meaning frankengun, that's worth big money ONLY to the person who built it or contracted to have it built. It's also in an oddball caliber unless you're going to use it in competition where the 38 super shines. Personally, I wouldn't want it at ANY price, and I'm kind of a Colt collector.

If you need a 38 super race gun and KNOW what you're buying, maybe it's a good deal ... good luck in your quest for info.

Just my opinion.

Probably should be moved to semi-auto section since it's not really for sale.



Ruger Guru
Sep 18, 2002
Lake Lure NC USA
The best advice I could offer is for you to get onto the USPSA website, or the Brian Enos forum etc & post the info with as much detail as possible.
Race guns are "subjective" in pricing. If you build one now, in high capacity, with a comp & optics, you will spend at least $2500. However, any used race gun usually warrants a lower price because the assumption is that it's been seriously used and may soon (if not now) need some maintence. It also depends upon how many mags it has etc, as high cap mags can be expensive.
If it's a single stack 38 super,, it's almost worthless in todays "open race gun" competition as all of them nowadays have high cap magwells. It's normal to see a race gun in 38 super carry 24-26 rounds in a "big stick" mag. A single stack race gun just won't be competitive.
That's not to say that they are not good guns etc, but due to it's lack of competitive ability, the price drops a lot. I've seen older single stack race guns sell for $500-$600 because of the amount of extra $$ it would take to bring them up to todays standards. I have also seen current race guns, minus optics, sell for $1200-$1500 with 2-5 mags.
I'd check out the Brian Enos forum as a LOT of current USPSA competitors hang out there.