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Old 07-26-2018, 10:03 AM
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Default Bought a first model DA .44 Russian

Picked this up online from a Cabelas recently. The price was right and from what the guy on the phone was telling me it sounded mechanically sound. I was very pleased when I received it. It looked better than the online pictures. It's tight with really nice bright chambers and bore with very minimal pitting anywhere. Well cared for but used revolver. I sent off my archive letter request to Roy last week. I'm selling my more worn 6.5" DA Frontier .44-40 to offset my investment. I'll post some last pics of it here before it sells which should be later today when the auction ends.
I also have ordered some Buffalo Arms black powder loaded .44 Russians so I can put a few rounds downrange. I always wanted one of these with the 4" barrel. They just look "right" to me.







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Old 07-26-2018, 10:06 AM
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Oh while I'm here, does anyone have a top latch and the other parts related to the latch? I have a spare barrel for one of these revolvers that is missing those parts. I'd like to cut that spare barrel down into an extra snub nose barrel for this gun.
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Old 08-04-2018, 11:06 AM
Dave T Dave T is offline
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twaits,

I used to own a cousin to your gun, back when 44 Russian brass was not readily available. I cut down 44 Special cases (Remington if I remember correctly) and loaded a soft 246g RNL bullet over something like 28g of black powder. I chronographed it back then (early 1990s) but can't find the results right now. I'm pretty sure it was 700+ fps.

My gun worked fine except the DA trigger pull was so heavy it made accuracy quite variable. In SA it shot fine. Hope you enjoy those BP loads.

Dave
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Old 08-04-2018, 12:38 PM
rct269 rct269 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twaits View Post
Oh while I'm here, does anyone have a top latch and the other parts related to the latch? I have a spare barrel for one of these revolvers that is missing those parts. I'd like to cut that spare barrel down into an extra snub nose barrel for this gun.
I have a latch assembly for a NM #3------assuming it's the same. It's blue, and essentially as new---unnumbered as I recall. I do not have a barrel catch cam nor it's spring.

The bad news (from your perspective) is it's a target assembly, and it's expensive----or at least I thought it was when I bought it--------$200 (my cost).

Ralph Tremaine
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Old 08-07-2018, 12:59 PM
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I shot the gun this weekend with Buffalo Arms black powder .44 Russian ammo. It was a great deal of fun. The only issue I had was in DA. If the trigger was pulled fast with it loaded it would throw by. Dry firing on empty cases would not. So the inertia of the loaded rounds throws the cylinder past the stops. Probably the stop spring is weakened after 130 years or so. Pulling the trigger slowly I had no malfunctions.

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Old 08-08-2018, 05:24 AM
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Nice gun.

I also have a 4" , but it was blue now a bit brown. I have some brass for mine. Around here there is quite a bit of cowboy action shooting and when I picked mine up at FFL he had a box of 44 Russians> Off to the range I went right from the FFL after checking the gun out. Mine function fine, but the DA was awful heavy.
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Old 08-11-2018, 10:11 AM
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Got the archive letter on this today. Only took a couple of weeks. As with a lot of old S&Ws it was shipped to MW Robinson in NYC. Nothing earth shattering there but I love the ship date of 8/8/1888.
Jack The Ripper was stalking the streets of Whitechapel London when this gun was shipped. That very month in fact.

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Old 08-25-2018, 10:49 AM
Rupert Bear Rupert Bear is offline
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Very interesting, thanks for that. I have one in Blue, though very worn. My serial no. is 2605x (last number replaced by "x" for privacy) which I think indicates made in 1909.

I thought at first it was a Model 3, but the screws, hammer and trigger are all different, and are the same as yours. The stamping on the top of the barrel shows the 1880 patent and although it doesn't say ".44 Russian" the cylinder borings are stepped. Is there a web page that points out the model recognition points? there seem to be a lot more posts about the Model 3.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-25-2018, 11:21 AM
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Welcome to the forums from the Wiregrass! Your .44 DA was made before 1899 and is considered an antique. It may not have shipped until 1909, though. The shipping date is all that Roy has to go with and that is what is in the letters. While you'll find esoteric info in the forum for IDing a gun, most of us use the Standard Catalog of S&W, 4th Edition by Supica and Nahas to ID. It is the best money you'll spend if you want to know the most about S&W guns. Also, Roy Jinks books are worth putting in your library.
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Old 10-16-2018, 03:51 PM
Ray A Ray A is offline
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How much are these guns worth
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Old 10-16-2018, 04:37 PM
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Guy, just so others know, all 44 Double Actions, Russian and Frontier revolvers, are considered antiques by the BATF. Frames were numbered before 1899 is the story.

Valuing this model is somewhat problematic. It seems that the market for large top break DAs has always lagged behind the SA S&W hoglegs. Refinishes, even if factory lowers value. Original guns in Very Good and Fine condition can sell for $600 one day and the same gun might sell for $1000 the next? Demand is sporadic. Most collectors agree that a refinish automatically places guns in the Very Good grade.
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Old 10-16-2018, 08:38 PM
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Ray A, condition, model and caliber are what drives the value. A Wesson Favorite, a .38-40 caliber or a .44-40 Frontier will raise the price of the .44 series of Double Actions. I'll leave pricing to others.
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Old 10-17-2018, 12:29 AM
Driftwood Johnson Driftwood Johnson is offline
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Howdy

I have two of them. Both chambered for 44 Russian. The Target Model at the top of this photo shipped in 1895, the blue one in 1881. Yes, the blue one has been refinished, the hammer and trigger should not be blued.




twaits:

In your video I overheard you say it shoots high. In my experience, all the Number Three Smiths shoot high because their front sights are so low. If you look carefully at my blued 44 Double Action, you will see I substituted an old coin for the front sight. Actually, a gunsmith did it for me. The original front sight was missing, so I had the coin installed. I told the smith to install the sight high, to bring the point of impact down. It now shoots pretty much to point of aim at close range.






I load my own 44 Russian cartridges with Black Powder.


Quote:
I thought at first it was a Model 3, but the screws, hammer and trigger are all different, and are the same as yours. The stamping on the top of the barrel shows the 1880 patent and although it doesn't say ".44 Russian" the cylinder borings are stepped. Is there a web page that points out the model recognition points? there seem to be a lot more posts about the Model 3.
Rupert Bear:

Technically speaking, these are Number Threes. Smith and Wesson built five separate models on the Number Three sized frame. The American, the Russian, the Schofield, the New Model Number Three, and the 44 Double Action. They are all Number Threes. The 44 Double Action was the only Top Break revolver S&W built on the #3 sized frame.

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Old 10-17-2018, 12:45 AM
Ray A Ray A is offline
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Here's mine
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Bought a first model DA .44 Russian-20181015_192713-jpg   Bought a first model DA .44 Russian-20181015_192653-jpg  
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