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Old 12-11-2010, 08:00 PM
Dave T Dave T is offline
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Default A Pre-War Returns to Duty

This is kind of silly but I smile every time I think about it so I figured I'd share it with the Smith fans, particularly those who like pre-War guns.

As a retired, former full time deputy sheriff I am qualified for the LEOSA program which allows retired peace officers to carry in every State. Only requirement is yearly qualification. Since I mostly carry semi autos concealed I have always qualified with one of those. This year, in addition to the Glock I've been carrying, I decided to qualify with a revolver. Since I'm not the shot I once was I needed something reasonably easy to shoot, not too much recoil and not too expensive...after all, this was just for the fun of it. After going through the collection of N-frame Smiths I decided on a 1938 vintage 38/44 HD. I had about 75 rounds of high quality reloads I wanted to shoot up (158g @ 850fps) and I'd fired them before in the old gun an knew they shot just a little to the right and a couple inches low at 25 yards. Figured I could hold on the top of the bad guy's right pocket and drop them into the sternum...more or less! (LOL)

Dug up some Dade speed loaders I bought last year off eBay, slipped the triple speed loader pouch and a holster (made for me by a former deputy I trained who is now a Federal Officer) on an El Paso gun belt and was ready to give it a try.

Much to my surprise, and delight I did a little better with the old HD than with the Glock. Have to admit I've been shooting more revolvers lately than semi autos so it's pretty much what I deserve. None the less, the old war horse managed a 244 out of a possible 250. Bet it hasn't fired that many rounds in one setting in a bunch of years.



When I had my gunsmith look this one over he said it has spent a fair amount of time riding in a holster and had fired quite a few rounds as well. It isn't in collector gun condition. It's nothing more than a shooter. That's OK. It's the way I prefer my guns because that's what I do with them. And this old duty gun still performs, just like it was intended to. (smiley face goes here)

Dave

PS: I know the stocks aren't right. These beat up dimond Magnas are what came on it and I haven't found a set of pre-War Magnas I can afford.
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:06 PM
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Nice looking outfit, thanks for posting the pics!
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:21 PM
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I love stories where the old-time revolvers outperform the high-tech modern stuff! I have a 1932 .38/44 HD that is one of my household defense revolvers. I know I can put bullets from it where I want to at home invasion distances, though I hope I never have to use it. There's a 1917 Brazilian that serves that role, too.

Nice revolver. Nothing says "authority" like a massive .38.
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Old 12-11-2010, 09:26 PM
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Sir, great story. Thanks for proving us old guys, with even older guns can still make things happen from time to time.
P.s That is a great looking set up you have.
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Old 12-11-2010, 09:48 PM
Muley Gil Muley Gil is offline
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"I have a 1932 .38/44 HD that is one of my household defense revolvers. I know I can put bullets from it where I want to at home invasion distances, though I hope I never have to use it. There's a 1917 Brazilian that serves that role, too."

I have a 1926 .44 Special in the desk drawer, right under the computer, and there's a commmerical 1917 on top of the ice box.
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Old 12-11-2010, 10:45 PM
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Too cool on so many levels. Thanks for sharing with us. As a relvolver-phile I am so tired of same-ol-stamped-out LEO sidearms.
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Old 12-11-2010, 11:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalton Wayne View Post
Where did you get the belt and the speed loader holders I like it a LOT
Regards
DW
DW,

The belt came from El Paso Saddlery. The triple, N-frame size speed loader pouch is one I found in a box of junk leather in a gun shop. The guy said $5 or $10...or something in that range, and I said I'd take it. I used it shooting revolver matches for almost 3 years.

Dave
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:00 AM
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Totally cool.
But you left out the best part, what was the reaction of the other people qualifying when they saw the Heavy Duty? And what was the reaction when they saw your scores? I'll bet it was interesting.
Now that you've qualified will you carry it concealed? If you do you'll be very well armed.
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Old 12-12-2010, 01:08 PM
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Great story! I like your choice of revolvers a lot, and it sounds like you know how to handle that old HD.

Thanks for the post,

Jerry
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Old 12-12-2010, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P@R Fan View Post
Now that you've qualified will you carry it concealed? If you do you'll be very well armed.
If I do it will be loaded with Buffalo Bore's duplicate of the old 38/44 round, a 158g SWCHP-GC at 1140 fps in a 4" barrel. It might make 1200 fps out of this Heavy Duty's 5" barrel. I've fired those through it and they feel very much like a Magnum. Not for the timid but then the 38/44 HD was never a timid sort of gun. (smile)

Dave

PS: As for the reaction, nobody knew what it was except "an old revolver"...but then they were all younger than me, including the instructor.
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Old 12-12-2010, 03:06 PM
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It may look big and old, but packs quite a punch still, if needed. Thus . . . a truly perfect gun and rig, in every way for a retired peace officer to carry.

Thanks for your service!
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Old 12-12-2010, 09:57 PM
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Way cool. I really like n frames and old ones too. I just don't have any old 38/44's or .44 Specials. May I'll luck into one or two someday.

Thanks for sharing. It seems most of the young officers today are too young to remember the days of revolvers. They have grown up with the plastic frames in cop holsters.
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:21 AM
Bell Charter Oak Holsters Bell Charter Oak Holsters is offline
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That's a really nice combination of assorted accessories, but your revolver and the story are terrific too. A friend of mine who is still on the job, told me in a recent phone conversation about a bunch of old retired cops he watched qualifying. He was really tickled to see 70 something year olds and even an 80 something year old police retiree shooting vintage wheel guns and scoring in the 240's. He said one guy, over 75 years of age shot the course with a pre war M&P and was the highest score that morning. It was probably his service revolver. He said the guy retired in 1968, so he went on probably just after WWII.

Cheers;
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Old 12-13-2010, 12:02 PM
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Very nice rig and a great old gun! Who is the maker of the holster? I can't quite read the mark.

Thanks,
Danny
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Old 12-13-2010, 12:13 PM
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Great story - still waiting for my county to start qualifying us old retired pharts.
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Old 12-13-2010, 12:51 PM
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Very nice revolver. I love to see guns like that used the way they were intended to be used. I would have loved to see the looks on the Glockophiles face when they saw your score.
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Old 12-13-2010, 12:57 PM
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OUTSTANDING !

Jerry
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Old 12-13-2010, 02:33 PM
Dave T Dave T is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by revolvergeek View Post
Very nice rig and a great old gun! Who is the maker of the holster? I can't quite read the mark.

Thanks,
Danny
Danny,

The guy who made the holster for me is also a cop and I trained him in the academy. He transfered from the sheriff's department to the Feds (Customs) after a several years with our dept. He's really a saddle maker but occasionally builds a holster for himself or a friend. He made that one for me, patterned after a Bruce Nelson design.

Dave
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Old 12-13-2010, 02:47 PM
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Now that is old school cool. Thanks for a neat post!
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Old 12-13-2010, 10:06 PM
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Hey, Dave as I rember you qualified with some old wheel gun while you were working and caught a lot of heat for it.
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommyjoe View Post
Hey, Dave as I rember you qualified with some old wheel gun while you were working and caught a lot of heat for it.
LOL - Yea Bruce, that was our off duty weapon qualification. Just for fun I went through the course with a Single Action Army Colt. The only thing I had a problem with was the reloading portion. Had to take a "0" for the second two shots after the reload because I just flat ran out of time. Still managed a passing score...although the actual number escapes me right now. Some of the white shirts (administrative types, other wise know as the brass) thought I was making fun of the deputies who didn't do so well or had trouble qualifying. I had to convince them I just tried it to see if it was possible.(smiley face goes here)

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Last edited by Dave T; 12-13-2010 at 11:54 PM.
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Old 12-14-2010, 12:03 AM
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Great looking rig and story. I have a 5" 1937 that I have not shot yet but plan to in the near future. Love the oldies. I started with revolvers in 1971 and then went to a 1911 for many years. Now I have a Glock that was issued to me by the chief who took over from me after I resigned as Chief in 07. I am a reserve there still. I find myself carrying revolvers most of the time now, when not in uniform. I started with them 40 years ago and still love them. I have many more revolvers now than semi autos.

I wonder how many retired cops carry revolvers rather than semi autos?

Tom
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Old 12-14-2010, 04:32 PM
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Default I like it!

I like that old revolver being used as a carry gun still. Can I ask who's range you qualify on? Buckeye Hills maybe?...(PM if you don't want it public.) It would be a pleasure to run into you at our range sometime.
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Old 12-14-2010, 07:41 PM
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Thomas, PM sent.
Dave
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Old 12-16-2010, 10:03 AM
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PM replied to. Thanks
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Old 05-18-2014, 03:40 AM
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An 1851 navy is still lethal. Nothing wrong with a trusty old wheelgun. Besides, it makes a "street expedient" club if needed. .
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Old 05-18-2014, 08:54 AM
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Two thumbs up!
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Old 05-18-2014, 03:44 PM
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back in 2005 when I got my permit I took my pre 21 which was 50 years old at the time. only two revolvers out of a class of 25. when the instructor came by he looked at all the others and picked mine up, looked it over and said "I want to shoot this". I told I brought extra ammo just in case. shot a perfect score with it. lee
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:12 PM
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It's great to see a old gun still doing duty!
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Old 05-19-2014, 12:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marshal tom View Post
Great looking rig and story. I have a 5" 1937 that I have not shot yet but plan to in the near future. Love the oldies. I started with revolvers in 1971 and then went to a 1911 for many years. Now I have a Glock that was issued to me by the chief who took over from me after I resigned as Chief in 07. I am a reserve there still. I find myself carrying revolvers most of the time now, when not in uniform. I started with them 40 years ago and still love them. I have many more revolvers now than semi autos.

I wonder how many retired cops carry revolvers rather than semi autos?

Tom

I know I sure do.


Wheel guns are still real guns too. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Old 05-19-2014, 06:40 PM
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Nice setup. That looks like what I used to carry my 38/44 when i worked as a field geo. Folks were a lot less concerned about a scruffy geologist with a revolver than when i was picking up rocks with a glock.
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Old 05-19-2014, 07:41 PM
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Great story and great decision by you on choosing your fine old revolver to qualify with and put back on duty.
I was always amazed how well my old HB M10 did back in the turkey shoot days. Revolvers are the best IMHO.
Thanks for posting your story.
Jim
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Old 05-19-2014, 07:49 PM
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Default Old revolvers

When I started on the police force in 1970 we had to qualify shooting 7 yds, 15, yds, 25 yds and 50yds. With modern automatics the 50 yard phase would be difficult, but no problem with a revolver.
J. Murphy
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Old 05-19-2014, 07:57 PM
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I like your style.
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