The distinguishing aspect of the Colt Lightning is that it is double action, meaning that it was capable of "trigger cocking," allowing "Lightning fast" firing.
The Colt Lightning was somewhat smeared in reputation on the account that it sometimes malfunctioned, and its parts were not built to last long, unlike its Single Action cousin, the Colt Peacemaker. It may have been that the Colt Lightning was meant for trigger cocking more than thumb cocking, which made the problems in the first place. In addition, the double action springs and lock work was excessively complicated and fragile, which also contributed to the unpopularity of the gun considering other more reliable double actions were in existence.
The model 1877 was Colt's first attempt at manufacturing a double-action revolver. It shows a striking resemblance to the Single-action Army. The standard finishes were blued, with case colored frame and nickel plate. The bird's head grips are of checkered rosewood on the early guns and hard rubber on the majority of the production runs.
The 'Lightning' was the favored personal weapon of famous Manchester (UK) Victorian Detective and then head of CID, Jerome Caminada.Cartridge:handguns