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So... any of our members here have an interest in firearms?

  1. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 26, 2019

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    Wait a minute!

    Is that a model marked 3 1/2-inch N-Frame .357 Magnum or is it actually a "pre" Model 27? It's a five-screw gun and has the prominent twin pins securing the sight base. Gotta be a pre-1957 example.

    I have a crabbier looking one from around 1954-55. I've not "lettered" it yet. Shown with a Colt 3 5 7 from about the same time period. Oh, and an IWC about the same age as the revolvers.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 26, 2019

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    I’m not sure my friend, on the road now but tell me what info you need. It came with the football grips that were not stock. Should have Magnas. I looked up the serial and it said ‘56-‘57.
     
  3. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 26, 2019

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    You just screwed me, now I’m looking at vintage 56-57 watches btw. Haha
     
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  4. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 26, 2019

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    Well ... now you've got my curiosity up Mtek.

    When you open the cylinder, do you see a "Mod 27" on the inside front of the frame adjacent to where the yoke is positioned when the cylinder is closed? Smith & Wesson began assigning model number nomenclature to their firearms in 1957.

    You really do need a 2852 Constellation to go with that big ol' hunk a' iron Smith & Wesson.
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 26, 2019

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    @noelekal here are pics I just took. I’m not sure what you need. Any help appreciated.

    Edit: lmk if you need number on end of grip. Yes, I need a classic Omega in a bad way. I love old stuff.

    I love this thing, and as much as I didn’t think I’d say it...better than Python. 73FA657B-2652-4C5A-98E2-6DF969318FE7.jpeg
    0D24BD04-10D4-42B9-AC6D-FA20150BC09B.jpeg
    DB7167E3-472A-4655-A946-64124049F7AB.jpeg
    B43C8D2F-75FE-471D-B036-6C803A072361.jpeg
     
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  6. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 26, 2019

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    Ok been searching 27 info and I got several hits on various forums. Some info from decades ago. From what I gather, SW did not stamp model 27 until 1957. At some point in this time, they also became 4 screw and not 5 like mine. SN on mine gives a range between ‘56 and ‘57 yr of manufacture. I feel pretty confident I have a pre-27 but certainly not the scarce Registered Magnum.
     
  7. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 26, 2019

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    Yep, a "pre-Model 27" (which is a silly non-factory term that current collectors understand, even if they don't all recognize it).

    Look maw ... no model number stamped on the inside of the front of the frame!

    You provided the correct photograph. The fact that your revolver was produced prior to the adoption of "Model 27" in 1957 adds interest and makes it just a little more collectible. No, not in that ratified realm of the pre-World War II Registered Magnum, but a really a good place to be in collectible mid-century Smith & Wesson N-Frame .357 Magnum revolvers, especially so with that uncommon 3 1/2-inch barrel length. Yours is in quite nice condition too. My .357 Magnum is quite decent, but comes off looking better in photographs than it does in person. I do holster and use it. Its serial number is S 124274.

    The large N-Frame Smith & Wesson revolvers that predate the advent of "Dirty Harry" in about 1971 are generally well thought of as collectibles. Pre-World War II examples even more so. They were made in significantly fewer numbers than the smaller framed Smith & Wesson revolver models. During the 1970s Smith & Wesson began cranking up production of N-Frame revolvers. Those are even pretty revered these days.

    The Supica/Nahas "History of Smith & Wesson" is in my firearms library. This compilation is not from it, but generally agrees with it.

    Assuming the serial number on the butt agrees with the serial number within the barrel shroud then yours does fall in that late 1956/early 1957 time period just as you said. You did your homework well.

    Post-War S Series N frames:

    S62,489 – S67,999……..1946 - Early 1947
    S68,000 – S71,999……….Late 1947 – Early 1948
    S72,000 – S72,499……….Late 1948 - Early 1949
    S72,500 – S74,999……….Late 1949 – Early 1950
    S75,000 – S80,499……….Late 1950 – Early 1951
    S80,500 – S85,999……….Late 1952 – Early 1952
    S86,000 – S94,999…….…Late 1952 – Early 1953
    S95,000 – S102,999…….Late 1953 – Early 1954
    S103,000 – S139,999……Late 1954 – Early 1955*
    S140,000 – S149,999….Late 1955 – Early 1956
    S150,000 – S175,999……Late 1956 – Early 1957
    S176,000 – S181,999……Late 1957 – Early 1958
    S182,000 – S194,499……Late 1958 – Early 1959
    S194,500 – S206.999……Late 1959 – Early 1960
    S207,000 – S219,999……Late 1960 – Early 1961
    S220,000 – S227,999……Late 1961 – Early 1962
    S228,000 – S231,999……Late 1962 – Early 1963
    S232,000 – S235.999……Late 1963 – Early 1964
    S236,000 – S257,999……Late 1964 – Early 1965
    S258,000 – S261,999……Late 1965 – Early 1966
    S262,000 – S289,999……Late 1966 – Early 1967
    S290,000 – S304,999……Late 1967 – Early 1968
    S305,000 – S329,999……Late 1968 – Early 1969
    S330,000 – S333,454……Late 1969 – Early 1970
     
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  8. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 26, 2019

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    Thanks @noelekal

    This one will see some gravel pit range time, no milk jug is safe around here either. I’m sure it will get some honest wear. I bought it to enjoy, and I’ll enjoy it just as I did today. This isn’t like driving a Cadillac to me, it handles 357 like a stretch limo lol.

    The checkering a long the top is brilliant. Performance Center could offer it today as an option and I think the take rate would be very high, even if expensive. There too many who like this kind of stuff and are willing to pay.

    Thanks again N
     
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  9. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 27, 2019

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    Hah! I've long said that shooting a Smith & Wesson N-Frame .357 Magnum double-action is like "driving a Cadillac." Heretical I realize, but I much prefer it to a Colt Python (one of which I also have) and consider the Model 27 and its older variations to be the best .357 Magnum revolvers on the planet.

    How about a quick "N-Frame Smith & Wesson Survey." Here are the ones I have on hand. Perhaps we can gather in other folks' N-Frame Smith & Wesson revolver photographs.

    Smith & Wesson New Century 1st Model "Triple Lock"

    The original and first N-Frame Model, the fabulous Smith & Wesson New Century 1st Model "Triple Lock." Nicknamed for its unique third locking point, a design touch that added strength later deemed unnecessary and required an excruciatingly exacting amount of extra manufacturing and fitting effort. It's been said that Smith & Wesson only provided the third locking point just to show off what the factory could manage in craftsmanship. A little over 15,000 Triple Locks of all kinds were produced. This one's been restored to a blue finish as it would have had when originally shipped from a shabby looking non-original nickel finish with non-original stocks. I couldn't afford a nice factory original Triple Lock. In .44 Special with 6 1/2-inch barrel. This revolver dates to 1910-1912 and is as smooth as "butta'".

    [​IMG]

    Detail of the third locking point.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here is a photograph of it in its non-original pre-restoration state.
    [​IMG]


    Smith & Wesson 2nd Model

    The British needed revolvers to supplement their issue side arms due to involvement in World War I so they came calling to Smith & Wesson and Colt in America. Colt produced variants of its New Service revolver model to suit them, but British purchasing agents weren't having any part of that fiddly third locking lug that Smith & Wesson had so proudly designed into their large framed revolver. They also didn't care for the ejector shroud which they viewed as good for becoming clogged with the mud and grime of the battlefield. Great Britain however, needed arms of all kinds badly so would accept supplies of existing Triple Locks that Smith & Wesson had in process if they were provided in the service .455 caliber. So, Smith & Wesson finished out every Triple Lock frame they had on hand and shipped them out, around 5000 of them. Then Smith & Wesson simply deleted the frivolous third locking point feature as well as the ejector shroud and provided large N-Frame revolvers chambered for .455 and having only the two conventional locking points. These gave satisfactory service and also serve as the harbinger for the style of N-Frame revolver Smith & Wesson would provide to the AEF when America entered World War I. America too was flat-footed when it came to adequately arming troops and providing for arms for training so the War Department came calling to both Colt and Smith & Wesson who were happy to provide quantities of their large frame revolvers chambered for the .45 ACP, same as the standard issue Colt Model 1911 automatic pistol. Smith & Wesson developed a simple clip that could be supplied with both the Colt and Smith & Wesson revolvers that would allow the revolver to properly function with the rimless .45 ACP cartridge design. These revolvers served as substitute standard and saw much service during the war. Many were trotted out of stores and served again during World War II.

    Here's an example of a Smith & Wesson 2nd Model revolver produced for the U. S. military, the U. S. Model 1917 with its 5 1/2-inch barrel and in .45 ACP along with some of the half-moon clips. The rounds seen here with lead bullets are handloaded cartridges put up in the .45 Auto Rim case which has a special thick rim to take the place of the moon clip.
    [​IMG]

    Around 163,000 Model 1917 revolvers were produced by Smith & Wesson for the U. S. government in 1917-1918.

    Smith & Wesson 3rd Model or Model of 1926

    Smith & Wesson continued to provide commercial variations of their 2nd Model large frame revolver after Armistice. These big revolvers were sold in much smaller quantities than the medium sized .38 Special K-Frame revolvers popular with police departments in the inter-war years as well as the small sized I-Frame pocket model revolvers.

    Certain lawmen in Texas and the Southwestern United States revered the grand Triple Lock and its protected ejector rod and made regular requests to Smith & Wesson to return that revolver to production. Finally, in 1926, Smith & Wesson heeded the requests and again provided N-Frame revolvers with shrouded ejector rods though never again produced the third locking point design. The N-Frame model with shrouded ejector rod was never a cataloged item before World War II, but was only produced on order. One of the big Smith & Wesson wholesalers of the era Wolf & Klar of Fort Worth, Texas was instrumental in bringing this model to fruition, placing a large order for them. In fact, few Model of 1926 revolvers were ever shipped to other wholesalers and those not until the late 1930s. I used to have one that was shipped to a New Mexico address in 1938. Smith & Wesson only produced about 4900 Model of 1926 revolvers, mostly in .44 Special, between its introduction in 1926 and 1941 when Smith & Wesson reorganized its production for the coming war effort making the Model of 1926 one of the rarer variants of the pre-war N-Frame family. The Model of 1926 is more uncommon than the Triple Lock of which 15,376 were produced or the .357 Magnum "Registered Magnum" of which slightly less than 6000 were produced before being discontinued in 1940. The "Registered Magnum" is worth the most though.

    The special order 3rd Model was produced side-by-side with the more common 2nd Model N-Frame Smith & Wesson, but the Second Model was produced in relatively large quantities, 57,000 commercial revolvers on top of those 163,000 produced by Smith & Wesson for World War I.

    Smith & Wesson 3rd Model or Model of 1926 with 5-inch barrel and chambered for .44 Special.
    [​IMG]

    I have obtained a factory historical letter on this revolver.
    [​IMG]



    Post War Production

    A good many of the commercial N-Frame revolvers produced were in .38 Special, both before World War II and after. In 1930 Smith & Wesson introduced an N-Frame revolver chambered for .38 Special and designed to take a special extra powerful loading of that cartridge. The company named this revolver the Heavy Duty. For sportsmen, a model having adjustable sights could be had. It was called the Outdoorsman. The powerful load was called the .38-44 because it was a .38 Special cartridge especially made for use in the heavy and strong 44 frame (N-Frame) revolvers. This loading approached .357 Magnum performance though its outward dimensions were that of the .38 Special. Smith & Wesson took things a step further and introduced the even more powerful .357 Magnum revolver in 1935. The .357 Magnum was the .38 Special case lengthened by 1/10 of an inch so as to preclude it being chambered in any .38 Special revolver. The .357 Magnum operates at even higher pressure levels than does the .38-44 or any .38 Special cartridge.

    The .357 Magnum revolver was only available as a super expensive factory custom creation before World War II. Smith & Wesson especially registered them to their owners hence the term "Registered Magnum." Just before .357 Magnum production was halted on the eve of U. S. involvement in World War II the registration marketing scheme was discontinued. Pre-war non-registered Magnums are much rarer than Registered Magnums though they don't have the cachet with collectors.

    Because the pre-war .357 Magnum was near impossible to obtain due to its exclusivity and and very limited production and because of the fact that it sold for the then princely sum of $60 in the Depression years, the .38-44 N-Frame retained a measure of popularity. After World War II, the .357 Magnum revolver was still a rare bird with very few being produced until the early 1950s. The .38-44 Heavy Duty soldiered on in some favor with law enforcement agencies and individuals. By 1955 several new .357 Magnum revolver models had been introduced by Colt and Smith & Wesson so the Heavy Duty and its special heavily loaded .38 Special cartridge hit the skids. It continued to be cataloged until 1966. The Austin Texas Police Department among other agencies continued to buy it and issue it to officers well into the 1960s.

    The Heavy Duty used to get no respect. It's big and heavy, overbuilt for the cartridge for which it is chambered. Back when, I'd pick 'em up at gun shows, look at the muzzles hoping to see a .44 caliber bore, note the smaller .38 Special bore and put 'em back down. $150 to $165 would buy 'em all day long back then. They're much more costly now.

    The person entertaining purchase of an example of the Heavy Duty or the Outdoorsman should be aware of a popular gunsmith conversion beginning before World War II until after .357 Magnum revolvers became more generally available. This was the simple re-chambering of these revolvers from .38 Special to .357 Magnum. Just lengthen the chamber that 1/10th of an inch and you're there. The revolvers apparently don't mind and handle the .357 Magnum ammunition with perfect satisfaction, including some of the older factory loads from when the ammunition was full-power rather than some of the more watered down .357 Magnum loads of today. Was a popular conversion of the day. Only thing is, it negatively impacts the value of any revolver so modified. It behooves the buyer to check the chambers to insure that they remain in the original .38 Special dimensions.

    This one is still in its original .38 Special chambering. Factory nickel finish is considered a bonus as is the 4-inch barrel this one features. Most were blued and with 5-inch barrels. Some few have 6 1/2-inch barrel which is very uncommon. With a serial number within 3000 of Mtek's .357 Magnum, this one's from the same time period as his. Nickel finish is difficult to photograph.
    [​IMG]

    With three models of Colt .357 Magnum revovler (the 3 5 7, Python, and Trooper) and three models different models of Smith & Wesson (Models 19, 27, and 28) in production by the mid-1950s, the .357 Magnum cartridge was in the ascendancy. This 3 1/2-inch N-Frame .357 dates to that time.
    [​IMG]

    Here's a later 6-inch N-Frame .357 produced well after the introduction of the Model 27 nomenclature. This revolver was probably produced in 1980, however I purchased it new in 1983.
    [​IMG]

    Smith & Wesson introduced the .41 Magnum cartridge in 1964 in a pair of N-Frame revolver models, the Model 57 with its adjustable sights and the Model 58 with 4-inch barrel and fixed sights. The cartridge has always played second fiddle to the .44 Magnum. The Model 58 isn't as commonly seen as the Model 57.

    This Model 57 .41 Magnum with 6-inch barrel was produced in 1975.
    [​IMG]

    "Do you feel lucky punk?" and "Go head and make my day" Here's the most powerful rendition of the N-Frame, the Model 29 .44 Magnum. After 1971 these things were in perpetual short supply and might as well have been made of gold as was reflected in the tagged prices in shops. "Dirty Harry" and the sequels kept them that way throughout the 1970s into the early 1980s. I paid well over retail list for this one brand new in January of 1980 and felt fortunate to have obtained it. I was young and had to have it. Didn't really have a purpose in mind for the revolver, but soon put it to good use shooting in hunter pistol silhouette competition and hunting deer. It's taken two.

    Model 29 .44 Magnum with 8 3/8-inch barrel, likely produced in late 1979.
    [​IMG]
     
    Edited Jul 27, 2019
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  10. voere

    voere pawn brokers are all about $$$ Jul 28, 2019

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    Congrats
    Great way to start a vintage collection
     
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  11. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 28, 2019

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    Fellas, what is your opinion of vintage nickel finish? I’ve seen a few deals, never owned one (yet) but I’m not sure about the bling on them. The Colt satin nickel isn’t too bad.

    @voere thank you bud, your approval means a lot as I like your watches and firearm pics. You’ve got style lol.
     
  12. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 28, 2019

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    Honest vintage Smith & Wesson factory finish is pleasing and pretty durable. Never had a Colt with nickel finish.

    If the finish is milky or has hairlines Mother's Mag Polish brightens it without damage.
     
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  13. SCTexas

    SCTexas Jul 28, 2019

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    A submariner [​IMG][​IMG]
     
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  14. Professor

    Professor Jul 29, 2019

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    Just remembered having these sellers images stashed in my picture folder.
    First my Crosman Mk1 .22 CO2 pistol. Not a lot of these , but not as rare as you'd think because they are built like locomotives and well worth the cost of resealing or even a complete rebuild.
    052017104751101_6573.jpg
    Next up a SSP 250 target pistol. I found this one in NOS condition. It had been a display piece in a gunshop who's owner had to retire due to health reasons.
    091317073659101_7069.jpg
    Both are pinpoint accurate.
    The SSP is in .177. I got a barrel and spare loading gate seal to convert it to .22 but I'll probably leave it as is because its the most accurate CO2 pistol I've run across.

    These are great guns, and I got dynamite deals on both but my favorite is still the S&W 78g in .22 that a friend gave me after he found it buried in the mud of a lake bottom many years ago. I resealed and partly refinished it, reshaping the warped grip panels by hand with judicious application of heat.
    Looks new and the MAC 1 "Hot Valve" I installed gives me 470 FPS with standard 14 grain pellets and 449 FPS with 17.8 grain pellets.
    This pic is not of mine.
    7818.jpg
     
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  15. Mtek

    Mtek Jul 31, 2019

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    In the last few days I’ve been looking at pawn shops for a 1911. Nothing in particular, just hoping for a nice deal on something not too common and hopefully a Colt.

    Saw a nice condition Gold Cup Commander today, yes Commander size. Really nice, asked to handle it, turned it over and the poor thing had the deepest idiot scratch I’d ever seen. I just couldn’t get past that and handed it back. Am I being shallow? If it had been a well worn GI or something I’d have no issue.
     
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  16. noelekal

    noelekal Jul 31, 2019

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    No.

    Some of mine have light idiot scratches. I put the dreaded idiot scratch on one. Unsightly gouges though just cannot be abided.
     
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  17. Mtek

    Mtek Aug 4, 2019

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    I installed some Wolf springs in my inherited HSc. Just went to the backyard and not one malfunction with almost 50 rnds of ball. Not very fun to shoot (what blowback is lol), but I like it.

    These old pistols feel like they are made of Tungsten, really heavy for the size.

    8BD055D1-D30A-4F19-94A7-2F5456AA4A85.jpeg
     
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  18. noelekal

    noelekal Aug 4, 2019

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    OOOooo... I like weight!

    The HSc has always managed to look futuristic despite its 1940 introduction date.

    That's a great detailed photograph!
     
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  19. Mtek

    Mtek Aug 5, 2019

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    I have a Scandium 357 wrist breaker here, 360PD SW, very very light. I’m really happy with my new Del Fatti pocket holster. Rough out option. Workmanship is as good as original Lou Alessi options. Really happy and thought I would share with you fellas.


    This is a great option for the summer and wearing cargo shorts. No printing, light and comfortable.

    84EA01FB-39FC-4BCD-B9A9-0605A5C28392.jpeg

    A63E64DA-93F0-4CA2-B0D5-5E12A9FA4F5A.jpeg

    631C369E-3CBA-433B-A1D3-781C0A5A3658.jpeg
     
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  20. The Father

    The Father Aug 5, 2019

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    FE783406-5EC0-47FB-858A-7252E1F742F1.jpeg AE93C554-C7BB-447C-88C5-8F9E69F216D8.jpeg

    Another plastic addition G48 to the family. Wheel guns may be in vogue sooner that I think. Only 1.11 inch wide.
     
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