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S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 All 5-Screw & Vintage 4-Screw SWING-OUT Cylinder REVOLVERS, and the 35 Autos and 32 Autos


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Old 04-20-2012, 06:48 PM
CA357 CA357 is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Default Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE

First, I apologize for not having pictures. I didn't have my camera with me and I'm a terrible photographer. I also don't know how to do the picture thing with my cell phone. I readily admit that I'm a dinosaur.

Anyway, I stopped at the LGS to take another look at what I thought was a .32 Hand Ejector. I thought maybe second or third change, I don't think it is.

It's a nickel, four screw, 4 inch pinned barrel, round butt with rubber grips, rear trench site and standard blade front sight. The last patent date on the barrel is Dec. 17, 1901. The S&W logo is rollmarked on the right side is a bit worn and it has a flat latch. The barrel is marked .32 Winchester Cartridge. The serial number is 8324.

There is some minor pitting on the frame, but overall, it's very clean. There is barely a turn line on the cylinder. There is some pitting and discoloration on the right side of the top strap at the forcing cone.

However, I'm really stumped on this part: It doesn't look to have any flame cutting on the top strap, but there is an oval indentation about a quarter of an inch wide at its widest point about a quarter of an inch back of the forcing cone. It runs perpendicular to the strap and it almost looks machined in.

So that's what I'm looking at. I hope I described it well enough for the experts here. The flat latch and the .32 Win. Ctg. confuse the heck out of me.

It's a sweet old Smith and I'd like to have it, but I can't afford to buy a problem. BTW, the price is $200. and with tax and fees, it would be around $250. out the door.

Thanks in advance for your help.

...CA357
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:05 PM
opoefc opoefc is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Your description sounds like the .32-20 Hand Ejector, Model of 1902. The features you describe are correct for that model, except I don't know what you mean when you say "flat latch?" Do you mean the cylinder release latch style, as seen on early J frames? If so, perhaps the latch is a replacement for the earlier style. The cut in the top step was used for awhile by S&W, thinking it reduced fouling, etc. from black powder rounds. Ed.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:20 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opoefc View Post
Your description sounds like the .32-20 Hand Ejector, Model of 1902. The features you describe are correct for that model, except I don't know what you mean when you say "flat latch?" Do you mean the cylinder release latch style, as seen on early J frames? If so, perhaps the latch is a replacement for the earlier style. The cut in the top step was used for awhile by S&W, thinking it reduced fouling, etc. from black powder rounds. Ed.
Ed, thank you for your help. I'll try and clarify things better. Yes, it looks very much like a J Frame latch. I have a 2006 S&W Standard Catalog, and the .32-20 latch looks like that's what it is. However, it's marked .32 Winchester Cartridge, not .32-20.

I just read the .32-20 Second Model description and it sounds close and the serial number range fits, but the caliber doesn't. I forgot to mention that it has a locking lug like the second model.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:34 PM
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The .32-20 and the 32 Winchester are the same cartridge.

32-20 (32 Winchester)
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:46 PM
mikepriwer mikepriwer is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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FWIW, a 32-20 , or 32 Winchester, is a K-frame, not a J-frame. Ed
was saying that if the gun has a flat latch, then its a replacement
latch.

Mike Priwer
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Old 04-20-2012, 08:05 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Thank you Ed, Springfan and Mike.

No, my description of the latch is an uninformed description on my part. I'm sure it's the correct latch. It was me description that was off.

I had no idea that .32-20 and 32. Win. were one and the same, so thanks for the clarification.

It now sounds like the revolver is identified. Now my questions are; is it worth $250. based on my description and how tough is it to find ammunition. I don't reload, so an orphan round is tough for me.

BTW, it cycles just fine, but the trigger is very tight, I think the innards are gunked up with old grease.
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Old 04-20-2012, 10:59 PM
Muley Gil Muley Gil is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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That sounds like a good price to me, especially in CA.

.32-20 is also known as .32 WCF (Winchester Central-or Center Fire).
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Old 04-20-2012, 11:40 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Thanks Gil. I really like it, it's got character.
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Old 04-21-2012, 01:37 AM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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I found one on Guns America. This is it, but the one at the shop is nickel and much, much nicer condition. SMITH & WESSON .32-20 HAND EJECTOR MODEL OF 1902 2ND MODEL Smith & Wesson Revolvers > Pre-1945 for sale, gun classifieds or gun auction from Elk Castle Shooting Sports. Buy or bid on this SMITH & WESSON .32-20 HAND EJECTOR MODEL OF 1902 2ND MODEL in

Thank you for all your help gentlemen, I truly appreciate it.
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Old 04-21-2012, 04:09 AM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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It's a bargain. If the hammer and trigger are nickeled also, the gun has been refinished. Hammer and trigger came case colored on blue and nickel guns from the factory.

If the bore is good and the chambers are good, get it. For that price even if it needs a little work it's still worth it especially if not refinished. But I agree the tightness is not doubt gunk.
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Old 04-21-2012, 01:19 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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The hammer and trigger aren't nickeled. I can't remember if they're blued or just plain steel. I'm doing a transfer at the shop later today, so I'll take another look at it.

It's just a sweet little revolver. Very graceful lines and light in the hand.

I have two last questions before I make a decision on it. Will shooting modern ammunition damage it in any way? Too much pressure?

Can I use Brakeclean or CLP to spray clean the clockwork without damaging the finish? I'd rather not disassemble the internals if possible.

BTW, I'm on a tight budget, so if I want to buy a gun, I usually have to sell a gun.
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Old 04-21-2012, 06:38 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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I bought it. Now I have to wait ten days before I can pick it up.

BTW, I checked and the hammer and trigger are blued.
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:24 PM
Muley Gil Muley Gil is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Any modern .32-20 ammo is safe in your "new" Smith.
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:38 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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You'll be happy with it, just use good earmuffs. The cartridge has quite a 'crack' to it when shot. The ammo loaded for it these days is quite safe to shoot in it. Back in the day HV rounds were made for rifles only. Don't use that if you should happen to find any, but it's clearly marked and the price is collector level so that will also be a clue. There's a current post in this section about it.

There's lots'a great products out there but my favorite is Breakfree. They make Powder Blast that works great for degunking the interior w/o dissassembly, just flood the interior and let it drain. It dries quickly then flood it with their CLP, let it drain and you'll be good to go. Both are safe for nickel finishes.

If the hammer and trigger are blued, chances are the gun's been refinished.
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:44 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondo44 View Post
You'll be happy with it, just use good earmuffs. The cartridge has quite a 'crack' to it when shot. The ammo loaded for it these days is quite safe to shoot in it. Back in the day HV rounds were made for rifles only. Don't use that if you should happen to find any, but it's clearly marked and the price is collector level so that will also be a clue. There's a current post in this section about it.

There's lots'a great products out there but my favorite is Breakfree. They make Powder Blast that works great for degunking the interior w/o dissassembly, just flood the interior and let it drain. It dries quickly then flood it with their CLP, let it drain and you'll be good to go. Both are safe for nickel finishes.

If the hammer and trigger are blued, chances are the gun's been refinished.
Now, that bums me out! I'll post pics when I finally have it in hand and you guys can make the call.

Thank you all for your help and patience.
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Old 04-21-2012, 08:11 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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This forum is a great tutorial on all things S&W, especially for evaluating finsihes.

If you study the pictures shown in all the threads, the guns known to be refinished have the clues to look for of the posting members. And there's plenty of pics with original finishes that show the crispness of the lettering, flat seams and sharp corners. By the time you get your gun, you can be an expert.
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Old 04-21-2012, 08:29 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Don't despair. What you're calling "blue" could easily be faded case coloring, which would be correct on the hammer and trigger. Also look at the ejector star, that should be blue not nickle.
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Old 04-21-2012, 08:59 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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I spoke out of my hind end again. The hammer and trigger are not blued! I don't know what I was thinking. Probably old age showing again. They look like dark gray faded case color.

I'll just shut up now and post pics when it's in hand.
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Old 05-02-2012, 05:19 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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I have it home and am cleaning it up. I test fired it yesterday and put a dozen rounds through it. It's a sweet and very light shooter.

Anyway, I'm having a problem removing the large top side plate screw. The head is already a bit buggered up and I don't want to make it worse. I've been drowning it in penetrating fluid, but it won't budge. I thought about heating it, but I'm afraid that it would mess up the nickel finish. I'd like to get the innards cleaned up and lubricated. Any suggestions?
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Old 05-02-2012, 07:37 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Yes two suggestions:
With a good fitting screwdriver tip in the screw slot, take a small hammer and give the end of the screwdriver a couple of smart whacks; this will often break it loose. Put extreme downward pressure on the end of the screwdriver handle while turning it to keep the blade seated in the screw slot.

2nd, use a propane torch with a sharp flame to focus a little heat on the frame side of the screw, not on the screw head and not on the sideplate. The idea is to expand the threaded hole in the frame away from the screw. This level of heat will not affect the nickel plating. It you get a slight yellowing of the nickel, it will polish off.

If neither works soak in a 50/50 mixture of acetone and transmission fluid. This mixture has been tested and proven to be superior to all other penetrants on the market.
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Old 05-02-2012, 07:51 PM
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Dave Chicoine makes and sells a fixture for troublesome sideplate screw removal. You can make one yourself it you are handy and have the time. It's a simple gizmo of two plates with all-thread to screw them together, with a mountable screw driver bit between them. It prevents the bit from backing up as you put torque on it.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:36 PM
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I finally gave up and sprayed the innards with Break free through the back of the frame. Then I polished it and put it back together. I took some pics too, but I'm not sure where to post them.
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:03 PM
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Quote:
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I finally gave up and sprayed the innards with Break free through the back of the frame. Then I polished it and put it back together. I took some pics too, but I'm not sure where to post them.
See instructions for posting photos here:

POSTING PHOTOS on this Forum.
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Old 05-02-2012, 10:01 PM
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You really don't have to remove the top screw to remove the sideplate. Take out the other sideplate screws and tap on the gripframe. The plate will pop off.

This is basically the same as the modern three screw revolvers, where the sideplate has a projection that fits into the frame.
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Old 05-02-2012, 10:07 PM
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Thank you gentlemen for all of your help. This is a wonderful place for a noob. I've owned a number of Smith's over the years, but this is my first really old one. Your kindness is appreciated.

Pics are up now too.
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Old 05-02-2012, 11:23 PM
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CA357,

If the number you list in the original post is actually the serial number, from the butt of the gun, then it is a 1902 (2nd Model) Winchester Model from, most likely, 1904. If the number is from the yoke cut then it is an assembly number and is no help in dating the gun.

Unless someone made a replacement for the thumbpiece it isn't a "flat-latch". This style did not exist until the early 1950s on the J Frame revolvers.

Others touched on the cartridge designation, but didn't really tell you anything helpful. The caliber marking on the early Winchester Models reads .32 Winchester Ctg, and is on the left side of the barrel at this time. This was used from 1899-1914. In 1914 the cartridge designation changed to .32 W.C.F. Ctg, and this was used until 1922 when it again changed to .32-20 Ctg. for the remainder of production of the model. All three terms are completely interchangeable and designate the same cartridge.

As Muley Gil told you, all current production .32-20 ammunition is suitable for .32-20 revolvers of any vintage, assuming they are in good, safe mechanical condition.

Since the hammer and trigger are not nickeled, and if the extractor is blued, you have a virtually ironclad guarantee that the gun has not been refinished, or if it has been it was a factory job.

A 6 1/2" 1902 1st Change Winchester Model was one of my very first center-fire revolvers about 52 years ago, and I still have it. It is one I would never part with.

I have a Marlin 1894C, Colt Army Special, Colt Police Positive Special, Uberti/Cimarron Colt Single Action Army replica, Spanish counterfeit S&W, the 1902, and 3 1905 Winchester Models chambered for .32-20. I think that is all! You may get the idea I like the cartridge!
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  #27  
Old 05-02-2012, 11:30 PM
CA357 CA357 is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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Thanks for the info Alk. The serial number is from the butt of the gun. To my untrained eye, thanks to all of your help, it looks all original to me.

Please check the pics here: 32-20, 2nd Model Pics
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  #28  
Old 05-04-2012, 06:19 PM
TACC1 TACC1 is offline
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Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE Please help me identify a .32 Hand Ejector, or if it even is a .32 HE  
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That's a beautiful job, thanks for sharing. Really does
have nice lines, too. TACC1
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