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Old 02-10-2017, 09:08 PM
TomJohn TomJohn is offline
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Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update  
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Default Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update

Please go to post #18 for the update:

I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts on this S&W 32 top-break 4th model (SN-2177XX). It is plated on everything except the trigger guard, trigger, and hammer. The medallions in the mother-of-pearl grips are plated as well. It doesn't look 'exactly' like gold-plating, as it has a slightly brassy tint, which could just be age. Do you think this was some kind of production 'presentation' piece, or more likely an aftermarket job? I am curious as to whether anyone has run into this before.

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Old 02-10-2017, 09:11 PM
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Sorry - I thought I was posting 3 photos. Let me try to post the other two...
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Old 02-10-2017, 09:13 PM
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Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update  
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Old 02-10-2017, 09:21 PM
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Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update  
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Here's a larger pic - Sorry, I'm kinda new at posting pics....
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Old 02-10-2017, 09:42 PM
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The plating could be either factory or aftermarket. In this case, I personally believe the plating was done by the factory as a special order. I would not purchase such a revolver and pay more than a normally priced piece without a factory letter telling me it was indeed a factory gold finish. Over the years there have been do-it-your-self kits for plating guns.
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:15 PM
TomJohn TomJohn is offline
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Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update  
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Thanks for the input, Mike. I didn't pay much for the gun and am just curious about the plating.
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:34 PM
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With the pearl grips and the unplated trigger, hammer, and trigger guard it very well could be original as these were usually plated when done outside the factory.
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:40 PM
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Would it be unusual for the factory to gold plate a gun not also engraved?


My exposure to antique S&Ws is pretty limited, but most I've seen pics of in gold were both engraved and plated.
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:57 PM
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First impression is it could well be Factory Finish; though it's hard to tell much from the fuzzy pictures.

A S&W Letter is your best bet without a first hand examination and even then it needs to be someone who knows S&Ws of this Era very well.

Nice looking 32.
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Old 02-10-2017, 11:28 PM
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Doesn't look right to me..I'd need a closer look..really tough to tell on a finish like that it's so uncommon (to me at least)
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Old 02-11-2017, 10:03 AM
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My Ladysmith is factory gold, not engraved, with medallion pearl stocks. The plating has aged to the same tint as yours. Definitely worth a letter.

Bob
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Old 02-11-2017, 11:01 AM
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Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update Thoughts On Gold(?) Plated 4th Model? - Jinks Letter Update  
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Thanks, all, for your thoughts. The plating is in such rough shape (holster wear, scratches) I'm not sure it's worth a letter. Unless, of course, a letter would tell me if the gun was special ordered by an individual, and whom. I'm not sure I would get that kind of information.
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Old 02-11-2017, 06:50 PM
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A gold plated revolver that has a factory finish would likely have been sent to an individual and not a distributor. The cost is only $75 and will bring closure to all the speculation. It could have shipped to someone well known and that would be a big plus, or it could have shipped with a blue finish and you will have the answer. The letter is the only way to know for sure. The stocks are right for an early post-1900 gun and if I owned it, a letter would already be in the safe with the revolver.
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Old 02-11-2017, 08:11 PM
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Gold plate is also a delicate finish. I have seen, otherwise near mint, gold finished, top breaks where overzealous rubbing/polishing has destroyed the value. No one ask, but I recommend leaving the finish alone.
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Old 02-11-2017, 09:18 PM
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Take it to your next barbecue.
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Old 02-11-2017, 09:25 PM
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It would be interesting to know it's history.. Might be pretty durned interesting where that little rascal has been.
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Old 02-11-2017, 10:52 PM
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OK, you've got me considering a letter. If I do send for one I'll let you know the results.
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Old 03-04-2017, 12:56 PM
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Update: Well, I sent off for a "Letter" and got this reply, along with other info:

My revolver "was shipped from our factory on August 9, 1901 and delivered Corele Hardware Co., no address was listed. The records indicate that this revolver was shipped with 3 inch barrel, gold finish, and pearl grips". (Underlining mine)

So thanks to those of you who encouraged a letter - it verified that the finish came from the factory! I have done a brief search for Corele (not Corelle) Hardware Co., with no luck. If this name rings a bell for any of you I would appreciate hearing about it.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:30 PM
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....gold finish...? I have several S&W with gold treatment to their finishes, they letter in two ways = (1) gold plated, or (2) gold finish.) In comparing these revolvers it appears, in my opinion, that "gold finish" means a gold wash, not gold plated. Gold wash is very thin and can wear off in spots very easily, while gold plated seems more durable. Ed.

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Old 03-04-2017, 04:11 PM
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Ed - yeah, I think this is a wash rather than plating. I'm still happy to know it came from the factory this way rather than being done aftermarket. I'm also wondering if "Corele Hardware" isn't a misprint of "Cordele Hardware", since there is a town of Cordele about 30 miles from where I bought it.

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Old 03-04-2017, 04:19 PM
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Cool gun and very blingy .

The SWHF Historian often has to work off old handwritten records, so typos, bad handwriting and other issues often arise. I'd also guess the guy who wrote the entry isn't around to ask any more...

Enjoy!
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Old 03-04-2017, 08:24 PM
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TomJohn, ask Roy or Don to double check the records as the 'D' and the 'E' are easy to transpose when "touch typing". I, personally use the HPE method: Hunt, Peck and Erase.
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Old 03-04-2017, 10:03 PM
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Will do, Mike. Thanks.
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Old 04-30-2017, 09:21 PM
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For those who have followed this thread: I sent Roy Jinks a follow-up letter asking if there could have been a typo or transposition error. I explained that there was no Corele Hardware of any record that I could find, but there was a nearby town named Cordele. I got back a personal apology that he had indeed made a mistake and it was Cordele. he also sent me a revised "Letter". There was a Cordele Hardware at the turn of the 20th century, and the town is only about 20 miles from where I purchased the gun. It's been an interesting saga. Now I'm going to try and find out if it was a special order for someone in particular.
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Old 05-01-2017, 09:37 AM
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It would almost certainly be a special order, but tracking down who will be your challenge. Good hunting.
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Old 05-01-2017, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomJohn View Post
Update: Well, I sent off for a "Letter" and got this reply, along with other info:

My revolver "was shipped from our factory on August 9, 1901 and delivered Corele Hardware Co., no address was listed. The records indicate that this revolver was shipped with 3 inch barrel, gold finish, and pearl grips". (Underlining mine)

So thanks to those of you who encouraged a letter - it verified that the finish came from the factory! I have done a brief search for Corele (not Corelle) Hardware Co., with no luck. If this name rings a bell for any of you I would appreciate hearing about it.
I just happened on to this post today. It would surely be a learning experience for us all. The hard core antique, C&R collectors here (I know I speak for myself and other serious collectors) would appreciate it.

Could you post a scan of the letter for us to admire. I've never seen a S&W letter stating "gold finish" so would like to admire it.

Also, try to take some quality, sharply focused and illuminated, digital photos to share with us.

It is odd that the gold finish is on an otherwise plain Jane revolver but with the factory pearls it was likely a special order. It would be nice to know who the original purchaser was e.g. who the Hardware store ordered it for or sold it to.

Hopefully it still has "the" original factory gold finish and not a re-re-finish.
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Old 05-01-2017, 05:00 PM
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OK, I made a copy of the letter and downloaded it. I marked out my street address and the last two digits of the serial number. Now I'm going to try and post it here:
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