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Old 10-08-2011, 08:51 PM
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Question Serial Number on S&W pre-Victory Model

Hi all, I have a Smith & Wesson Model of 1905, 4th change pre-Victory model "United States Property" marked, and all correct /matching numbers except for the grips (right panel to be exact). It has the WB, Ordnance Bomb, and P proof on the butt. Australian FTR markings below the "Made in USA" indicating it was part of a Lend-Lease to Australia. Caliber is .38 S&W, properly marked on the matching numbered barrel.

SN is 891xxx.

Questions are:

1) Approximate date of manufacture? I'm thinking late 1941/early 1942.

2) Are these pre-Victory models more or less collectible than the V prefix "Victory" models?

I have tried selling it and one interested buyer decided to pass based solely on the fact that it did not have a V-prefix.

Thank you!
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Old 10-08-2011, 09:02 PM
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Please post pics; sounds like a very nice and interesting revolver.

I agree with your likely dating.

The whole wartime contract/lend-lease/Victory collecting thing is a variable field. I certainly don't think a gun from this era is any less collectible because it lacks a V, but I recognize that the V will have a powerful symbolism for some individual collectors. I'm more interested in the Australian connection, because far fewer commonwealth contract revolvers went there than to the British. I might give your gun a value kick for that.

In general, pre-Victory revolvers interest me a little more than the V-prefix revolvers because there are fewer of them.

There will be other opinions, of course.
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Old 10-08-2011, 09:05 PM
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Default Here are some pics:

Thank you.

My research also indicates that the grips are of the correct type for this particular serial number even though the right panel is not matching to the gun's serial number.





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Old 10-08-2011, 09:27 PM
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That's a really nice specimen.
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:19 AM
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The guy who passed on the sale does not know what he has missed. Your is a fine example of a pre V model which is Austrlian martially marked. All correct butt markings apart from the 2 which was probably applied in Australia. The gun has been FTR probably at Lithgow, but that is where the original grips probably got parted from the gun. Look at the case colours on the hammer, she has seen no work. I cannot see in your pics the full FTR markings but was probably done in 1954/55 era. Possibly FTR MA55 or so. plus inspector marks etc.
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:53 AM
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I can confirm that S/N 83335X shipped Oct. 1941. It is also Australian marked and is in 38 S&W with the 5" barrel.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:23 AM
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so what is the value of one of those without the"V" prefix
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kimporter View Post
so what is the value of one of those without the"V" prefix
To my mind it's not the V that makes the difference; it's the specific variety. A standard British Pre-Victory or Victory might be a $300-500 gun depending on condition, but there might be a premium for an Australian model, or South African, or postwar Austrian Police re-issue, or...
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:55 AM
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Could someone please comment on the parkerized finish on many of these Models and on Victory Models? I see some for sale with blued finish and some for sale with Parkerized finish. Some of these parkerized revolvers look like they are pitted under the finish, but maybe it is just a lesser quality preparation if the gun was to be parkerized??.

How do you tell the difference between factory parkerized and later date refinish without a letter from Roy??
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ballarat View Post
The guy who passed on the sale does not know what he has missed. Your is a fine example of a pre V model which is Austrlian martially marked. All correct butt markings apart from the 2 which was probably applied in Australia. The gun has been FTR probably at Lithgow, but that is where the original grips probably got parted from the gun. Look at the case colours on the hammer, she has seen no work. I cannot see in your pics the full FTR markings but was probably done in 1954/55 era. Possibly FTR MA55 or so. plus inspector marks etc.
Yes, it's FTR/MA54


Quote:
Originally Posted by glowe View Post
Could someone please comment on the parkerized finish on many of these Models and on Victory Models? I see some for sale with blued finish and some for sale with Parkerized finish. Some of these parkerized revolvers look like they are pitted under the finish, but maybe it is just a lesser quality preparation if the gun was to be parkerized??.

How do you tell the difference between factory parkerized and later date refinish without a letter from Roy??
http://coolgunsite.com/pistols/victo...and_wesson.htm

Under finish "Early sandblast blue, sandblast mid-night black (appears grayish black). And finally a parkerized finish."

As we know, many of the Australian FTR'd ones were likely reparked.

Last edited by beemaze; 10-09-2011 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 10-09-2011, 03:16 PM
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I disagree with the coolgunsite link's reference to "...finally Parkerizing." S&W only Parkerized a very few Victory Models early in production, when they found out the process was patented and a royalty was demanded by the patent holders. S&W then devised their own version of a dull finish which they called sand blast blue and/or midnight black. The refinishes done in Australia, during the FTR processes, are a darker color, not a Parkerized finish. Ed.
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Old 10-10-2011, 10:34 PM
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Very informative. Thank you!
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Old 10-11-2011, 07:25 PM
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Very nice Aussie!!
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S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 Thread, Serial Number on S&W pre-Victory Model in Smith & Wesson Revolvers; Hi all, I have a Smith & Wesson Model of 1905, 4th change pre-Victory model "United States Property" marked, and ...
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