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  #1  
Old 09-17-2009, 11:48 AM
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Default .32 Regulation Police Info Request

New to the forum, so if some of my questions are in other threads, my apologies.

Recent purchase: Pre-War .32 Regulation Police, 3-1/4 inch barrel, walnut stepped grip, 1917 patent date on bottom of grip, SN on forestrap, cylinder, underside of barrel. Seems gently used, obviously carried a bit, bright bore, good finish. Not collector-quality, but possible shooter. Found some I-frame info through searches here, TFL, THR. Called S&W; helpful but couldn't find anything on year of manufacture.

So... may I tap into your expertise on a few questions?

1. SN is 3933XX. (Mid-late '20s, maybe the '30s?)
2. Would this one have rolled out before S&W began heat treating? Does it make any difference?
3. Would it be wise to "load five, skip one" and carry on an empty chamber, or can it be safely carried with six?
5. Ok to use modern standard 88 gr LRN short and 98 grain LRN long? Is there a WC in .32?
6. Have read/heard that the .32 round is very accurate, and supposedly, so are the I-frames in this caliber. ???????

The little revolver appeals. But, the more I get into it, something in the back of my mind says, "Caution, here. This one may be a bit too far on the vintage side."

Thank you. I look forward to learning more about this one.
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  #2  
Old 09-17-2009, 12:17 PM
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Welcome to the forum. I'm answering off the top of my caffeine-deprived head, so take these responses as guides to research rather than the word from on high.

The S/N puts it about 1923/24, though it might have shipped a year later.
Heat treating began before this, so these cylinders are a little stronger than the ones manufactured 10 years earlier.
The modern hammer block system came along in the late 1930s, but that doesn't mean you should have to carry an empty chamber. Test it for yourself - can you push the hammer forward far enough for the pin to protrude into firing position when your hands are nowhere near the trigger? If not, you're probably safe.
Modern .32 short and long loads are probably OK unless you find some that say "high velocity" or "tactical maximum explode-o" or something like that on the box. Find some cowboy or downpressure loads if or you want to be safe. I don't know that they exist, but I suspect they do.
Yes, .32 Long can be very accurate from longer barrels, but I don't know if that applies equally to the shorter ones. I seem to recall that .32 S&W long groups are better than .32 Colt and even .32-20 Winchester (for which S&W offered a K-frame gun before WWII). I believe Fiocchi makes .32 long wadcutter ammo.
I-frames are great guns. I have a 1923 .32 RP target model and some prewar .22/32s.

Here's a link to a thread a I started several days ago about the Regulation Police target revolver that I just mentioned. It is just slighty older than your fixed-sight gun. There's a page image from the 1925 S&W catalog that may interest you.

Don't see one of these too often -- .32 Regulation Police Target Model (1923)
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Last edited by DCWilson; 09-17-2009 at 12:20 PM.
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Old 09-17-2009, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smittenwesson View Post
New to the forum, so if some of my questions are in other threads, my apologies.

Recent purchase: Pre-War .32 Regulation Police, 3-1/4 inch barrel, walnut stepped grip, 1917 patent date on bottom of grip,

1. SN is 3933XX. (Mid-late '20s, maybe the '30s?)
2. Would this one have rolled out before S&W began heat treating? Does it make any difference?
3. Would it be wise to "load five, skip one" and carry on an empty chamber, or can it be safely carried with six?
5. Ok to use modern standard 88 gr LRN short and 98 grain LRN long? Is there a WC in .32?
6. Have read/heard that the .32 round is very accurate, and supposedly, so are the I-frames in this caliber. ???????

The little revolver appeals. But, the more I get into it, something in the back of my mind says, "Caution, here. This one may be a bit too far on the vintage side."

Thank you. I look forward to learning more about this one.
I can only answer (4) 5 and 6, from information on this board and personal experience.

I have a 32 cal Hand Ejector, made from 1910-1917. I does fine with both shorts and longs. Yes they have WCs in longs, they are my favorite. Mine is very accurate.

That is the sum of my 'expertise'.



I would also like the answer to question three.

.
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Old 09-17-2009, 12:40 PM
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DC Wilson and Red14:
Thanks for your responses. I just tried the hammer-push test; came up ok. HV ammo -- the only .32 S&W ammo available in my area is Remington 88 or 98. Don't see HV anywhere on either box. But a friend gave me two boxes of older Remington .32 that are clearly marked High Velocity.
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Old 09-17-2009, 01:22 PM
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Welcome to the forum, now post pictures!!
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Old 09-17-2009, 03:10 PM
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Hornaday and Speer both make swaged .32 wadcutters for handloading. Both shoot better than any of us do! Save your empty brass.
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Old 09-19-2009, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smittenwesson View Post
New to the forum, so if some of my questions are in other threads, my apologies.

Recent purchase: Pre-War .32 Regulation Police, 3-1/4 inch barrel, walnut stepped grip, 1917 patent date on bottom of grip, SN on forestrap, cylinder, underside of barrel. Seems gently used, obviously carried a bit, bright bore, good finish. Not collector-quality, but possible shooter. Found some I-frame info through searches here, TFL, THR. Called S&W; helpful but couldn't find anything on year of manufacture.

So... may I tap into your expertise on a few questions?

1. SN is 3933XX. (Mid-late '20s, maybe the '30s?)
2. Would this one have rolled out before S&W began heat treating? Does it make any difference?
3. Would it be wise to "load five, skip one" and carry on an empty chamber, or can it be safely carried with six?
5. Ok to use modern standard 88 gr LRN short and 98 grain LRN long? Is there a WC in .32?
6. Have read/heard that the .32 round is very accurate, and supposedly, so are the I-frames in this caliber. ???????

The little revolver appeals. But, the more I get into it, something in the back of my mind says, "Caution, here. This one may be a bit too far on the vintage side."

Thank you. I look forward to learning more about this one.






Hello Smittenwesson
I have a Regulation Police revolver in Nickel with the 3-1/4" Barrel that shipped in 1926 with serial number # 4599XX. From what I understand the Cylinders started getting heat treated in the Mid to late 1920's and your revolver serial appears to be a little before that, possibly early 1920's to The Mid 1920's range. I and J Frames are hard to tell Birth dates on as I have not found much information on their serial numbers, But MR Jinks told mine shipped on the date shown.





Your revolver will have the Early style Hammer block that was hammer Mounted. These were changed during World War II after a Victory revolver was accidentally dropped on a Flight deck of a Navy ship and discharged Killing the sailor that dropped it. All Guns from 1946 Forward will have the new style hammer block of flat twisted steel. I feel comfortable carrying mine with all 6 chambers loaded as I do not plan to drop it, but also feel the accident discharge was a freak accident that would be hard to duplicate again.





Any commercial ammo made in .32 Short or .32 S&W Long is safe as long as the revolver it is being shot from is deemed safe and Locks up tight. A Gun smith can usually inspect it and determine whether or not it is safe. The .32 S&W Long is a Low Pressure round so any ammo made by Commercial ammo company's should be fine to fire in it.



S&W did make the I-Frame revolver's in .32 W.C.F. Caliber, but the Ones older than the Mid 1920's should not be shot with any ammo made for Rifles as this style ammo is Hotter than the standard Pistol loads of that time span.



I have found any .32 S&W revolver to be super accurate, but like any other small frame revolver's Practice is Key to making hit's in the Ten Ring area Often. The Early I frames like our's have a flat Main spring, so the trigger Pull is a little stiff, but ones hold and aim is practiced enough, they too can fire tight groups like the later Coil Main spring revolvers.




The .32 S&W Long Caliber was used extensively by Police agencies from it's beginning to around the mid to late 1930's when the .38 Special round was used to replace it and then the .357 Magnum round after 1935. The Regulation Police revolver was designed for daily side arm carry by Police agencies and seemed to be fine until Thugs got more powerful weapons, and the High crime Gangsters forced police agencies to up-Grade to more Potent calibers.

Below is my 1926 Regulation Police revolver. It was owned and carried by Harry Anderson the Evansville, Indiana Police Chief strong side in a flap Holster while he rode on an experimental Motorcycle Brigade that he was in charge of in the Late 1920's. Regards, Hammerdown











Last edited by Hammerdown; 09-19-2009 at 06:28 AM.
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Old 09-19-2009, 01:45 PM
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Hammerdown: Thanks for your reply. Very helpful. You've got a jewel in that Chief Anderson .32. Nice piece of research,too.

Gunsmith gave my RP a close look Friday. He found no problems. His conclusion: "This is a good one. Solid, tight, clean. Shoot it. I would."

I'll stick to 88/98 gr. factory ammo.

Regards
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Old 09-19-2009, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smittenwesson View Post
Hammerdown: Thanks for your reply. Very helpful. You've got a jewel in that Chief Anderson .32. Nice piece of research,too.

Gunsmith gave my RP a close look Friday. He found no problems. His conclusion: "This is a good one. Solid, tight, clean. Shoot it. I would."

I'll stick to 88/98 gr. factory ammo.

Regards
Hello Smittenwesson
Thank's, I appreciate your Kind words. I hand load all my .32 S&W Long ammo. I use mostly 100 Grain Rainier copper plated bullets and a Light Target Load. They are a Ball to shoot and very rewarding accuracy wise once the correct load is found for each specific Revolver. Have fun shooting it, and Keep us Posted on it's accuracy. Let's see some Pictures also. Regards, Hammerdown
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Old 09-20-2009, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smittenwesson View Post
Hammerdown: Thanks for your reply. Very helpful. You've got a jewel in that Chief Anderson .32. Nice piece of research,too.

Gunsmith gave my RP a close look Friday. He found no problems. His conclusion: "This is a good one. Solid, tight, clean. Shoot it. I would."

I'll stick to 88/98 gr. factory ammo.

Regards







Hello Smittenwesson
Believe it or not, No one wanted the revolver shown. It was at a Local Gun show and I was the Only one that showed any Interest in it. The owner of it had it marked at $450.00 for the Two day event. He asked me if I was Interested in at, and I said that I was but not at his Marked price on Saturday. I returned Sunday as he was Putting all his Guns away late in the day, and he handed me the box it came in and asked if I could use it at $210.00 ? I Paid him, and asked why his price had changed so drastically ?





Evidently he had spoke to my Buddy who had a table next to his, and was told how I Loved the .32 Round. He asked my Friend if I would fire this revolver ? My Buddy told him he would Guarantee I would fir and enjoy it, and the seller told my Friend it had set in his closet for well over 35 Years and it was time someone enjoyed it, so that is why he dropped his price. I came home and got a hold of The Evansville, Indiana Police department and asked what they could tell me about Chief Anderson ? Follow the Link below to see what I learned about it's original owner. You never know what will turn up when you Buy these old S&W revolver's and to date this one had the Most bang for it's Buck and I am Glad I found it... Hammerdown.



Finding "Old Harry's Side Arm" a 1925 Regulation Pol. Revolver with a Ton of History
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357 magnum, colt, commercial, ejector, fiocchi, hand ejector, jinks, k-frame, prewar, remington, tactical, victory, wadcutter, walnut, winchester, wwii

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