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  #1  
Old 09-25-2010, 01:26 PM
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Default Value of 38-44 Outdoorsman S&W?

Found a S&W 6" 38-44 Outdoorsman ser no S788xx for sale and would like to know the date of production and value.
Looks good with 90% + original blue, no rust.
The minus side
Has been reamed out to 357 (looks like a professional job) and has been so stamped on the barrel.
does not have original grips (has Pachmiers)
Does not appear to have been shot much.

Thanks for any input

Chuck H
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Old 09-25-2010, 02:19 PM
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Default Pass on it

90% and modified, without original grips (a moot point), I would not pay as much as I would for a Highway patrolman in the same shape. Number dates it to about 1950. Unless the date means something to you or it is dirt cheap and I mean DIRT cheap, walk away
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Old 09-25-2010, 02:23 PM
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That gun probably shipped in 1950. It will be one of the earliest units produced in the Model of 1950 configuration, also referred to as the Pre-23. This model featured the postwar short hammer-throw action, which distinguishes them as a class from the prewar and immediately postwar long-throw actions.

Many .38/44s were bored out to take .357 Magnum, but that kind of modification is better if left as a quiet conversion. Maybe it's just the collector in me, but I think it's a shame the barrel was restamped after the charge holes were lengthened. This should be an excellent shooter regardless of which round it is fed, but I'm just sad it couldn't stay in its original configuration.

As an unmodified Pre-23, this would probably be at least a $1000 gun. As a modified and remarked gun, it shouldn't bring more than half that. You can get really good 6- or 6.5-inch Pre-27s these days in the $500-600 range. That's the competition for this modified .38/44.

That is probably a 6.5 inch barrel on the gun you are looking at. If it's less, a later .357 Magnum barrel may have been put on the gun. It wasn't clear to me if the current caliber stamp on the barrel is in addition to the .38 Special designation or instead of it. I assume it is an additional mark, but I don't know.
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Old 09-25-2010, 04:31 PM
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Yes, barrel has the original 38 logo, and 357 mag stamped just in front of it.
It's been for sale for quite a while at 499.00.
I sure like the action though, nice and smooth.


Thanks for the replies
Chuck
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Old 09-25-2010, 04:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoot View Post
Yes, barrel has the original 38 logo, and 357 mag stamped just in front of it.
It's been for sale for quite a while at 499.00.
I sure like the action though, nice and smooth.


Thanks for the replies
Chuck
I would likely buy it to make a 41 or 44 spl for that price
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Old 09-25-2010, 04:47 PM
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Chuck:

Pass ! Look for a nice unmodified gun ! You can find them for well under $1000 if you are patient !

This is a $740 gun. It has a couple abrasions and wear spots but is mechanically very nice!

It may take a few months to find one but the wait will be well worth it and you can always recoup your investment without any problems!

The high asking prices you see for Pre-23 models on places like GunBroker are VERY unrealistic and the guns never sell ! (Pre-War and "transitional' guns are a different story!)

Jerry

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Old 09-26-2010, 01:02 PM
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Thanks for the information,
i am going to pass on this one.
Anyway I spent my gun fund money yesterday on a very clean model 10-8 pinned 4" hb square butt.

Thanks
Chuck H
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Old 07-12-2011, 07:33 AM
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I want to bring this thread back from the dead since I just found a decent condition Outdoorsman for sale. Gun only but she is in decent enough condition. She has at lease 90% of her bluing remaining if not more. The action isn't bank vault tight, but is about normal is only the slightest movement. This is an older model in that it isn't model marked and still has its diamond magnas. They think that have some kind of rare gem and have priced it at $1200... What is a real world value on such a gun? Is that $740 a decent average?
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:45 AM
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I think you can get Pre-23s in OK condition in the $600-800 range if you keep your eyes open and are patient. $1200 for a 90% gun sounds excessive to me. I'd need to see pics, because one man's 90% is somebody else's 80% or maybe 95%.

What I picture in my mind's eye based on your description is not a $1200 gun.

I recently saw an auction house listing for a Pre-23 that anticipated a sale in the $600 range for a gun that looked used but cared for. If someone gets it for that it would be a good price. Can't remember which auction, though. Sorry. The auction may already have occurred.

EDITED TO ADD: The points below are well taken. I just assumed that we were talking about a short-action Pre-23 like the ones discussed above. If in fact we are talking about a transitional model, that is worth extra money.

Can you post the serial number? Or most of it?
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:50 AM
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maxBob:
You didn't state if it is a transition gun or not. That would make a difference to me.
Ed
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:05 PM
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Maximumbob54:

Ed's point is important ! A long-action transitional gun is worth a lot more to me than a a post-1950 short-action model.

What is the serial number of the gun you are looking at?

I would pay a couple dollars more for a Model marked 23 though !

Jerry
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:54 PM
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To all of the above - I will go back and see if they will let me take a picture or not. I will at least get the S/N. I should post around 6PM'ish whatever I can. To my untrained eye it looked much like GLL's gun, but I admit to being a novice to this. I just took note of the no model number stamp.



Serial number was hard to read under glass. It must have been Glock day because they were selling three of them at a time so they told me I could wait or look through the glass. I chose glass. S/N looked like (S 127969) as in the S, then a big gap and then the numbers. I won't swear I read the numbers just right.

Also, they have a clean looking what I assume is a .32 Kit Gun:

Again, I think the price is high, but I think that about everything these days. The cheap bread isn't even ninety nine cents anymore...

Last edited by Maximumbob54; 07-12-2011 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 07-12-2011, 05:42 PM
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Update with pics ^^^
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:20 PM
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It is a nice looking post-1950 short-action model.

Not a $1200 gun in my opinion !

Jerry
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Old 07-13-2011, 07:53 AM
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Would you send me a PM with the LGS contact info, I like that 32 revolver!!
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:14 AM
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Quote:
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Would you send me a PM with the LGS contact info, I like that 32 revolver!!
'20s-era Regulation Police, possibly refinished. Even if that is the original finish, $600 is not a realistic price.
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Old 07-13-2011, 11:56 AM
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Gotta love the "Rare" label...

Nice looking gun, and since I don't know enough yet to say if it's worth $1200 or not, I won't render an opinion in that regard.

However, if anyone knows where I could find one like that (unmodified) for about $740, please let me know.

tp
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Old 07-14-2011, 07:43 AM
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So I'm right that this is no where near a $1,200 gun. What would be a good price range then? $700 -$800? I might make them an offer if it sets long enough for them to start getting ready for it to go for real.
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Old 07-14-2011, 10:35 AM
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I know about one of these in rougher condition that just sold for $725. Based on that sale, I'd guess the gun you are looking at would be a good buy at $800-850, or a little higher depending on how much you want it. I'm just going by the pics, so I assume the action is sound, bore and chambers are shiny, and there is no rust under the stocks or in out of the way places.
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Old 07-14-2011, 11:04 AM
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The first time I saw it I checked the action, and it is plenty tight still with only the normal tiny amount of wobble side to side and maybe a paper thin amount of end shake. I don't know what to call that besides "normal". The bore and chambers have no pitting but I should have asked him to drop a .357 in each one to be sure it hasn't been modified. I couldn't see anything inside that would indicate it, but that doesn't mean it wasn't well done. I would have to ask to pull the stocks for rust checking under them. Assuming everything is good, is topping out at $900 too much to offer? I would really like a nice example of an N frame from the pre model mark era but I'm not trying to act like I'm Joe Moneybags. It would be a lay away for sure.

And thank you so much for answering these questions. Guys like you are the only thing that keep guys like me from being hit with, "A fool and his money are soon parted..." So I really do appreciate your time and effort with this.
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Old 07-14-2011, 11:46 AM
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Glad to offer my opinion. I think I would top out around $900 on that revolver, but that's just me looking at this particular gun. There have been times that I have paid a big premium for a gun I really wanted just to make sure that somebody else didn't get it.

Through the glass that gun looks like it has the matte or satin finish. There was also an optional high polish finish available for these Pre-23s. I would go higher for a high-polish specimen if I came across it, but that's the collector speaking. If I wanted a good N-frame .38 to both appreciate and shoot, I'd go for one with a satin finish.

I hope GLL comes in with a value estimate; he knows more about prewar and postwar ODs than I ever will.

By the way, on the rarity issue: if I recall, S&W made about 6000 of these short action postwar ODs, pre-23 and model marked 23 combined. That's not high production, but I wouldn't call this a rare model in light of the conservative demand for them. A few people are passionate about these heavy frame .38 Specials -- I'm one -- but others just don't get it. They'd rather have a .357 Magnum that can shoot both .38 Special and the stouter load as well.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:13 PM
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I agree with David's $900 maximum offer.
These guns are great fun to shoot and always draw a lot of attention
when my shooting partner brings hers to the range !

Jerry

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Old 07-15-2011, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
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I agree with David's $900 maximum offer.
These guns are great fun to shoot and always draw a lot of attention
when my shooting partner brings hers to the range !

Jerry

What gun?
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:45 PM
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Paid less than 700 for this, but that was about 3 years ago. My only OD.


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Old 07-15-2011, 12:49 PM
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If its the one I think you're talking about, the gentleman that was selling it describes it much worse than it really is, just because he's that kind of guy. That $725 gun is actually pretty nice when held in the hand.....

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I know about one of these in rougher condition that just sold for $725. Based on that sale, I'd guess the gun you are looking at would be a good buy at $800-850, or a little higher depending on how much you want it. I'm just going by the pics, so I assume the action is sound, bore and chambers are shiny, and there is no rust under the stocks or in out of the way places.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
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If its the one I think you're talking about, the gentleman that was selling it describes it much worse than it really is, just because he's that kind of guy. That $725 gun is actually pretty nice when held in the hand.....
Congratulations. I wondered who got that one. It sure went fast.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
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I agree with David's $900 maximum offer.
These guns are great fun to shoot and always draw a lot of attention
when my shooting partner brings hers to the range !

Jerry

The big Smith, the tight group, the handcuff key around the neck - the layers of meaning boggle the mind.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:46 PM
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Congratulations on that mighty fine hardware you got there GLL.....along with the associated software
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Old 07-15-2011, 06:19 PM
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Buford57 said that much better than I kept trying to. I just kept deleting my own posts.

The best one I almost said was, " Gotta love a girl with an N frame..."

But that just makes her sound full figured... EPIC FAIL...
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357 magnum, glock, highway patrolman, kit gun, model 10, n-frame, outdoorsman, patrolman, postwar, prewar, s&w, transition

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S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 Thread, Value of 38-44 Outdoorsman S&W? in Smith & Wesson Revolvers; Found a S&W 6" 38-44 Outdoorsman ser no S788xx for sale and would like to know the date of production ...
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