1.8.1 Total Production Extrapolation: During the evaluation process of the serial numbers of the close to 100 Uberti miniature guns in the Hunzinger Collection we were unable to identify any trend lines or correlations regarding the total production of models or variants. Likewise serial numbers cannot be related to a certain period of production. These observations are in line with the assessments of Wayne Driskill.
We assume that these findings result from the Uberti company's change in operating policies when USHS terminated their subscription program in 1997/98. Because after USHS's drop-out as major customer Uberti started accepting orders from their dealers for miniature guns with each and every serial number desired. This in turn led to the duplication, triplication or quadruplication etc. of serial numbers already issued earlier. In other words since around 1998 miniature Colt SAAs, Navies and possibly other models as well have been encountered with serial numbers identical to those produced earlier or in the editions of the previous HEGE and/or USHS subscription programs, respectively. This represents a variable which dilutes attempts for potential projections of total production quantities.
1.8.2 Unexpected Findings: 40% of the revolvers over all models in the Hunzinger Collection feature the caption Mario Passeri and/or his mark PM or MP (see also chapter 1.3 titled Aldo Uberti and his Team of Movers & Shakers). Miniatures with this caption or marks are known from Europe only.
Only 10% of the miniatures of Colt revolvers of the collections were recorded with markings and marks corresponding to those found on originals.
184.108.40.206 Without Maker's Address: No maker's address underneath the barrel represents specimens of the USHS subscription program between (assumingly) 1986 and 1998 (oldest USHS documentation from 12/1986, youngest dated from 09/1997)!
220.127.116.11 With Maker's Address: Miniatures with maker's address underneath the barrel were probably produced for the Italian home market or distribution preferably through the U.S. dealer network.
1.8.3 Embellishments: A higher grade of embellishment implies a more intricate finish only. It does not mean more complete or period correct markings and marks like you find in originals.
1.8.4 Surprises at Second Glance: All percussion revolvers of the Hunzinger Collection feature rifled, unplugged barrels and bored through chambers of their cylinders. Their nipples
however, are not bored through.
Also the cartridge guns – Colt SAAs, Winchester Carbine and Rifle – sport rifled barrels (except UK imports). They are plugged, however (see chapter 1.2 Legally Non-Guns but Pieces of Art). Like noted in the percussion revolvers the chambers in the cylinders of the cartridge revolvers are bored through.
Chambers like the real one in Colt 1873 SAA Old Model miniature #1 from USHS Classic Line are rare. NB assembly nr. #205 of cylinder (courtesy Erwin Gräber collection)
Rare removable cylinder bushings found in Colt 1873 SAA New Model "Buntline" #PM3428
Likewise, removable cylinder bushings were observed in USHS miniature SAAs in which they seem to be the rule. In their HEGE marked counterparts or those distributed through the Uberti dealers they are infrequently discovered.
December 19, 2018/WDN
The chambers of cylinders of Colt SAAs produced for the USHS subscription program were found to have the typical step in the forward section to accommodate inside lubed cartridges like you find in the originals.
This observation does not apply to all SAAs of the HEGE subscription program or subject miniatures distributed through dealers. Most of the latter’s chambers were found to be straight bored through i.e. chambers like in originals are the exception.