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Old 03-16-2016, 01:43 AM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Hey everyone!

So I recently picked up a FN 1910 chambered in .32 ACP and love it! So far I've put 50 rounds through it without a hiccup and was surprisingly accurate for having nearly no sights on it. I thought I could make it a little more utilitarian by buying a .380 ACP barrel for it that's in the mail now. After I receive that, I'll have a pocket pistol that can convert between .32 and .380 ACP in just a few seconds!

All that said, I was also wondering if anyone might have a little more knowledge about the serial numbers and history of this pistol. The serial number is a 480xxx and appears to be parkerized. I've never seen a 1910 parkerized, but the magazine is still blued. It also has a stamp with the text "INTER AMERICAN" on it, which, after researching, seems to have been a small import firm in California that went under in the late 80s.

Anyways, pictures of other people's 1910s and or stories would be appreciated. Thanks!

Link to album (can post images separately too) https://imgur.com/a/oW2n2
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Old 03-16-2016, 12:11 PM
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Well, I'm not a collector of them, but I have had 3 of them over the years. My current one I picked up about a year ago at an auction. .380, and as you found a very good shooter. When you convert that .32 to a .380 do you have a different recoil spring and magazine? The .380 is considerably hotter that a .32 and I would think you might get frame battering with a .32 spring. I'm also thinking the .380 won't reliably feed from the .32 magazine.

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Old 03-16-2016, 12:29 PM
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A 1910 in .380 is allegedly the pistol used by Gavrillo Princep to assassinate Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie in Sarajevo, thereby starting WWI. I have only the older Browning-FN Model 1900, and it is one of my favorites. It was made only in .32 ACP.

I don't know, but I'd suspect that you will also need at least a .380 magazine and a stronger recoil spring. I am also not sure if any modifications to the breech face and extractor are needed to accommodate the larger diameter of the .380.

Last edited by DWalt; 03-16-2016 at 12:39 PM.
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Old 03-16-2016, 01:04 PM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Hey guys! Well from all I've read, Browning made the 1910 able to convert between .32 and .380 ACP with just a barrel change. The magazines are also supposed to be interchangeable and I can strip six rounds out easily. Not sure about the recoil spring, but the barrel comes with its original spring too.

EDIT: from what it looks like in the pictures, the .380 barrel has a noticeably thinner barrel wall. Can anyone with a pair of calipers tell me the diameter of their .380 barrel just to check?

Here's a useful article too about the pistol: 1910 FN Browning

Last edited by Me239; 03-16-2016 at 02:21 PM.
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Old 03-16-2016, 03:04 PM
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I'd suspect that the .32 and .380 barrels would have the same OD but different IDs. If .380 seems to fit OK in a .32 magazine, it's worth a try to see if it functions OK.
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Old 03-16-2016, 03:16 PM
italiansport italiansport is offline
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If you want more information on these great pistols Anthony Vanderlinden's book on Browning is the definitive source.
Jim
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Old 03-16-2016, 03:33 PM
reddog81 reddog81 is offline
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Where'd you find the barrel? I've been looking for a FN 1922 barrel in .380 for about 1 year with no luck. I believe the 1910/1922's are basically the same guns but the 1922 has a longer magazine and a longer barrel.
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Old 03-16-2016, 04:21 PM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reddog81 View Post
Where'd you find the barrel? I've been looking for a FN 1922 barrel in .380 for about 1 year with no luck. I believe the 1910/1922's are basically the same guns but the 1922 has a longer magazine and a longer barrel.
I found the barrel by chance on eBay. I had been looking for awhile too and just by chance found one for sale and bought it right away. Check eBay and numrich gun parts religiously and I'm sure one will pop up eventually. I did a search and found a couple .32 ACP barrels, so .380 is bound to appear again.

And right you are about the 1922 being basically the same gun. To my knowledge, all that was changed was the barrel was lengthened, grip the same, front and rear sights added, and the new lug on the front for the added barrel length.

Last edited by Me239; 03-16-2016 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 03-16-2016, 05:40 PM
alwslate alwslate is offline
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I'm not a collector but but I do have four 1910s plus another one that
I bought as a box of parts that is missing the striker and it's spring
and spring guide that I plan to assemble some day. Two of my guns
are marked as Brownings and are in .380 and date to 1968. The other
two are FNs in .32 ACP and are probably pre WW2. I have read that JB
designed the 1910 to be convertable between .32 and .380 by just
changing the barrel and I believe it. Magazines may be marked for
either caliber or unmarked but seem to be identical and will accept
both ctgs. The breech face looks to be the same on my guns and will
accept either ctg. External barrel dia is the same on both ctgs. As to
recoil spring strength, I don't know. I would guess that it's not a
critical issue and that spring compression length prevents battering.
I have never seen a parkerized 1910 and don't think it's original. The
magazine safety is easily removed and I have removed them from my
guns. I have read that some early guns were offered from the factory
with barrels in both calibers and as to buying a barrel in another
caliber for your gun you will likely have to do a little filing or stoning
on the barrel lugs to achieve a proper fit to the lug recesses in the
receiver. Here's my two FN .32s along with a Savage 1908 and one of
my Browning marked .380s.
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Old 03-16-2016, 06:11 PM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alwslate View Post
I'm not a collector but but I do have four 1910s plus another one that
I bought as a box of parts that is missing the striker and it's spring
and spring guide that I plan to assemble some day. Two of my guns
are marked as Brownings and are in .380 and date to 1968. The other
two are FNs in .32 ACP and are probably pre WW2. I have read that JB
designed the 1910 to be convertable between .32 and .380 by just
changing the barrel and I believe it. Magazines may be marked for
either caliber or unmarked but seem to be identical and will accept
both ctgs. The breech face looks to be the same on my guns and will
accept either ctg. External barrel dia is the same on both ctgs. As to
recoil spring strength, I don't know. I would guess that it's not a
critical issue and that spring compression length prevents battering.
I have never seen a parkerized 1910 and don't think it's original. The
magazine safety is easily removed and I have removed them from my
guns. I have read that some early guns were offered from the factory
with barrels in both calibers and as to buying a barrel in another
caliber for your gun you will likely have to do a little filing or stoning
on the barrel lugs to achieve a proper fit to the lug recesses in the
receiver. Here's my two FN .32s along with a Savage 1908 and one of
my Browning marked .380s.
Thanks for the info! I expect I'll have to do some fitting to get the barrel just right, but fingers crossed I don't have to remove too much material as the serial numbers and ~100,000 between each other.

As for the parkerizing, I too doubt it's original and wouldn't be surprised if the firm that imported it did the work.

Also, do your barrels all interchange? Since you have 4, just wondering if you were able to swap them between frames with no fitting. Thanks!

Last edited by Me239; 03-16-2016 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 03-16-2016, 09:34 PM
alwslate alwslate is offline
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I haven't really tried to go so far as swapping barrels and firing the
guns but one day just to satisfy my curiosity with all four guns apart
I tried the barrels of all in the other receivers and some fully seated
and others did not. Also one of my old .32s had a bad barrel when
I bought it. I found a good barrel at a gun show and luckily it fit in the
gun I wanted it for but did not fit in the other old .32. But I think any
fitting issues would be minor and just require a little work. Just take
your time and don't get in a hurry and make sure the new barrel fits
into the receiver just like the old barrel before you try to assemble
the gun or you may end up with a handfull of locked up parts that
are not easy to disassemble. Don't ask me how I know this.
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Old 03-16-2016, 10:46 PM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alwslate View Post
I haven't really tried to go so far as swapping barrels and firing the
guns but one day just to satisfy my curiosity with all four guns apart
I tried the barrels of all in the other receivers and some fully seated
and others did not. Also one of my old .32s had a bad barrel when
I bought it. I found a good barrel at a gun show and luckily it fit in the
gun I wanted it for but did not fit in the other old .32. But I think any
fitting issues would be minor and just require a little work. Just take
your time and don't get in a hurry and make sure the new barrel fits
into the receiver just like the old barrel before you try to assemble
the gun or you may end up with a handfull of locked up parts that
are not easy to disassemble. Don't ask me how I know this.
Haha! Sure will do! On a side note, I know people generally shun those who think of refinishing a vintage firearm, but seeing as how this one has already been refinished(?), would it be taboo to file some of the pitting down and reblue?
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Old 03-17-2016, 12:44 PM
alwslate alwslate is offline
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Opinions vary widely on refinishing vintage firearms but given the
facts that your gun has already been refinished over pitting and is
import marked there is no collector value. The only problem I would
see in having it reblued would be putting money in it that would not
be returned at time of sale. If it's pitted it would require heavy buffing
to get down to a smooth finish which would probably remove all
marking. I think it might be best enjoyed as is and future money
invested elsewhere. Post a pic if you can.
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Old 03-17-2016, 03:38 PM
Me239 Me239 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alwslate View Post
Opinions vary widely on refinishing vintage firearms but given the
facts that your gun has already been refinished over pitting and is
import marked there is no collector value. The only problem I would
see in having it reblued would be putting money in it that would not
be returned at time of sale. If it's pitted it would require heavy buffing
to get down to a smooth finish which would probably remove all
marking. I think it might be best enjoyed as is and future money
invested elsewhere. Post a pic if you can.
Thanks for the response! Well the pitting is thankfully on the frame, under the left grip panel so it's not too terrible. It's just something I wouldn't mind fixing. I don't really plan on selling this gun since it's now my only .380 and .32 pistol I own and it carries so well. If I put money into it, it's just for my personal preference and not any collectors value.

In other news, the .380 barrel came into today and fits and functions just fine! I used some 2000 grit sandpaper to polish and clean it up a bit and swabbed the barrel out with a nylon brush. Feed 6 flat nose rounds just fine. The recoil spring it came with is just a tad longer than the one with the .32 barrel, but the friction is unreal and I almost need pliers to get it off of the barrel! So I'm using the .32 barrel spring with it now. I'll give a range report later after I've fired some rounds through it.

Speaking of rounds, I need to find a new .380 carry ammo. All I have right now is some Buffalo Bore 100 grain +P HC rounds that penetrate ~44" from a 3" barrel! Not sure that's really what I want, but it won't be too bad for hiking I guess. Might mess up a coyote's day. I've seen good reports from the Ruger ARX ammo, so I might pick some up.
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Old 03-17-2016, 06:10 PM
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Former TX governor Rick Perry killed a coyote with his little Ruger .380. Your larger one will give added power.

Does anyone else here think that Walther looked at the sleek M-1910 when profiling his Model PP pistol? They have much of the same sleek look.

In the movie, "Dr. No", James Bond used a Browning when he shot the crooked chemist with a silencer on the gun. They probably hoped viewers wouldn't notice that it wasn't a Walther. Also, he had a PP in some scenes, not the stated PPK.
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Old 03-19-2016, 08:24 PM
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Hey everyone! Finally got to try the new barrel out today and it works great! Only shot about 40 rounds through it cause that thing kicks hard for such a small cartridge! It fed and chambered Remmington ball, Buffalo Bore FN, and Ruger ARX just fine. Accuracy was a little more spread out than the 32 barrel, save for the ARX ammo that had all but two rounds touching at 7 yards.

I think that I'll be carrying the ARX ammo cause it feeds fine and I shoot it the best, plus it reliably gets ~14" of penetration in tests.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:07 AM
dick723 dick723 is offline
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I have a 10/71 Browning .380. Anyone know if the 1910 magazine will fit the 1971? I need to replace mine. Duct tape getting weak
Duct tape is a joke but I did have to grind down the bottom half of 1 mag. It was bowing out where the metal meets
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:21 AM
robertrwalsh robertrwalsh is offline
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I can not claim to be a collector but I have a couple, a .32 and a .380, due primarily to the historical connection. They are fun to shoot.
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Old 07-16-2017, 12:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dick723 View Post
I have a 10/71 Browning .380. Anyone know if the 1910 magazine will fit the 1971? I need to replace mine. Duct tape getting weak
Duct tape is a joke but I did have to grind down the bottom half of 1 mag. It was bowing out where the metal meets
The 10/71 on your gun is the manufacture date, it is a Model 1910. Sarco has magazines on this page: Pistols Magazines

Sarco lists both .32 and .380 magazines, but the only difference (very slight) is the placement of the sight holes, the magazines are otherwise identical. A funny note, the pictured .380 magazine was assembled with the magazine tube blank up-side down! I have one of these and it functions fine, but sure looks funny! I believe it came from Triple-K, so this should tell you where Sarco gets theirs.
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Old 07-16-2017, 04:03 PM
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Quote:
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The 10/71 on your gun is the manufacture date, it is a Model 1910....
I believe dick723 is talking about a legitimate variant. While the 71 does indeed refer to 1971, that was the year this particular variant was introduced. It has nothing to do with a manufacture date.

The Model 10/71 was a version of the 1910 with adjustable sights and longer slide. In Europe it was sold under a different name; I've seen it referred to as a Model 130.
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Old 07-16-2017, 04:31 PM
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Yes, and it is also referred to as the "Sport" model as I recall. I believe it pre-dates 1971 a bit and was Browning's concession to GCA 1968 that prohibited importation of small handguns that didn't score enough "points" to allow continued importation. Additions included those horrible stocks with the thumb rest as the lengthened barrel and added sights didn't add enough points.
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Old 07-16-2017, 09:56 PM
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Those are the same sights they were putting on the HP sports model in the early 70s- "beer can sights" I think
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:31 PM
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When I started my Police Career in 1973, down under, our issued pistols were Browning 1910s & Colt 1903 in .32 ACP for uniform and plainclothes and 1910/22 long slides for our Highway Patrol. We used the .32ACP instead of the .380ACP as it had more penetration and that was a factor with gthe old roundnose copper jacketed bullets we used in those days. We continued to use them until the 1980's when we modernized to S&W revolvers. Our sister State Police used the Browning BUT in .380 ACP calibre, way out in the bush we used to purchase the "other" barrel so if we were on a "joint" patrol we could run with the same calibre in our pistols. There was no problem swapping .32 and .380 barrels over and we used the same magazines and recoil springs. I have several in my collection in both calibres and the barrels swap quite readily amongst them.
Of recent interest is the conversion of .32ACP barrels to .32NAA
calibre which is a bottle neck .32 projectile in a .380 case. Velocities are excellent, the recoil is NOT severe and the guns are holding up to this calibre which appears to be adding new life to these pocket pistols. I will certainly be looking at getting one of these barrels for my 1910's 1910/22's
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Old 07-18-2017, 07:01 PM
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Although it is much fun to shoot, I rarely shoot it as the tear down for cleaning is a pain in the a** getting the barrel bushing back in place. Even with a piece of rubber hose (thank whomever made that recommendation) it is still somewhat difficult.
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:53 PM
Walter Rego Walter Rego is offline
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I posted several weeks ago about an Astra Model 4000 Tri-Caliber Kit that was offered in 1956-57. It came with a complete additional slide assembly and magazine in .22 LR and a .32 ACP and .380 ACP barrel for the regular slide assembly. Both of the centerfire magazines are identical and not marked as to caliber. Antaris' Astra book shows a photo of how it was packaged originally, and mine is the same.
I have not yet test fired it but it appears that all that is needed to swap between .32 and .380 is to swap barrels. Both magazines feed .32 A-Zoom dummy rounds into the .32 barrel when worked by hand and both mags feed dummy .380 rounds into the .380 barrel the same way. I assume that a change in recoil springs and even magazines is not necessary and the extractor must be designed in such a way as to work properly with both centerfire rounds. Perhaps the OP's Browning is just as easily changed, with just the barrel swap needed ?

Last edited by Walter Rego; 07-18-2017 at 08:55 PM.
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Old Yesterday, 07:36 PM
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Lost out on a nice 1910 while hymming and hawwing about it. When I decided to grab it the guy said he had just sold it and I regret it to this day. I would love to find one of the stainless ones made right here in the good ol' US of A. Wondering what the hell I'm talking about? There was a small up start in Texas in the 80s called LONE STAR ARMS if memory serves me right. Made a copy of the 1955 model in .380. Wish I could find the mid 80s Gun Digest or Shooters Digest with its ad on the back cover. If any one has one or old ads for it please post it.
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