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Old 12-05-2012, 05:54 AM
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Default 38-44 Outdoorsman or Heavy Duty advice

I have a chance to purchase a gun identify as a 38/44 Outdoorsman Model of 1950 or a pre Model 23
with a 5 inch barrel, condition is not stated.
The serial number dates to1955- 1956 ( S1491XX).
This is a Police confiscated weapon.
I do not know the bore condition, history, tightness or functionality.
The picture used in the ad is of fairly poor quality, so finish quality is difficult to determine but I would guess fair with some pitting.

Has large S&W logo on side plate
Appears to have 4 line address
Barrel appears to be marked 38 S&W Special Ctg.

If I am reading the book correctly Outdoorsman produced after 1950 had the ribbed barrels, partridge front sights and adjustable rear sights.

This one has none of those features (see picture) Looks to me to be a post war 38/44 Heavy Duty.
I must admit I find the Pre Model Number guns to be somewhat confusing.

I have wanted to add a Hand Ejector to my collection for some time but am unsure if I should go for this one, kind of risky because of the poor description and not knowing the condition.
However the price maybe in my range depending on the bidding on this one, it is currently (pre auction) going for $350.00 and I am figuring on the final price in the $500.00 range with a 18% bidders premium and shipping on top of that. So $650.00 with FFL fees.

Is this gun correctly identify in the ad?
If not what is it?
Is the large top side plate screw correct, one nearest the hammer?
Dose this gun have coke grips on it?
How much is it worth based on the above description?
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:15 AM
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That is a pre-model 21 or Heavy Duty and $650 would be ok depending on condition. Cokes only came on Mdl 29s and 57s so those grips are the standard magna grips.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penmon View Post
I have a chance to purchase a gun identify as a 38/44 Outdoorsman Model of 1950 or a pre Model 23
with a 5 inch barrel, condition is not stated.
The serial number dates to1955- 1956 ( S1491XX).
This is a Police confiscated weapon.
I do not know the bore condition, history, tightness or functionality.
The picture used in the ad is of fairly poor quality, so finish quality is difficult to determine but I would guess fair with some pitting.

Has large S&W logo on side plate
Appears to have 4 line address
Barrel appears to be marked 38 S&W Special Ctg.

If I am reading the book correctly Outdoorsman produced after 1950 had the ribbed barrels, partridge front sights and adjustable rear sights.

This one has none of those features (see picture) Looks to me to be a post war 38/44 Heavy Duty.
I must admit I find the Pre Model Number guns to be somewhat confusing.

I have wanted to add a Hand Ejector to my collection for some time but am unsure if I should go for this one, kind of risky because of the poor description and not knowing the condition.
However the price maybe in my range depending on the bidding on this one, it is currently (pre auction) going for $350.00 and I am figuring on the final price in the $500.00 range with a 18% bidders premium and shipping on top of that. So $650.00 with FFL fees.

Is this gun correctly identify in the ad?
If not what is it?
Is the large top side plate screw correct, one nearest the hammer?
Dose this gun have coke grips on it?
How much is it worth based on the above description?
Yes, this is a Heavy Duty with a 5" barrel, one of the standard lengths.
A gun of this era had the upper side plate (or 5th) screw.
It has the standard Magna stocks that are correct for the gun, and judging by the wear on them they are likely original to the gun.
In my opinion there is not enough information to make an educated decision about its value. If the seller is willing to post or send additional photos that would help, but if this is all the information you will have a total cost of $650 seems high for a gun of unclear condition.

There are several HD collectors here on the Forum (1Aspenhill comes to mind) who have a lot of experience in this area and hopefully can comment also. Hope this is helpful.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:28 AM
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I am not positive about this, but it seems that auction house has sold that same gun 4-5 times. Either that or they always have a pre model 21 on hand. Not sure what's going on with that. I have even bid on it a couple of times. You are right about the price, it usually sells for about $550. With fees that's a decent price but you see them sell on GB for that price regularly so if you miss it it's not the end of the world. I called em and ask for an inspection which they handled efficiently. I like your taste for a first hand ejector. A 5" heavy duty is an awesome gun!! An absolute classic.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:41 AM
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Penmon,

That may be the worst picture that I have ever seen an auction house post. There is significant wear evident on the barrel and barrel lug and the gun looks like it has been stored in a dust bin.

The top screw has been badly buggered so that tells you that someone with little skill has been or attempted to get into the insides. One additional thing that is unknown is whether or not the cylinder chambers have been bored out for .357 Mag. Not uncommon on those guns and would be a deal breaker for me since you have no knowledge what loads might have been fired in it.

If it passed a much closer inspection as simply being used hard and not abused, the price wouldn't be bad. If the seller won't answer some pointed questions and give you some good pictures, I would pass.

Bob
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:24 AM
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It appears to be a 80% gun which would make it in the Good range. I wouldn't go 650 for it and doubt many folks would. Carried A LOT ! Perhapes it will go much lower. Have Fun at any rate....dan
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:37 AM
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I thought a HD became the Model 20 and that Model 21 was the final resting place of the .44 Military.

Any road, I agree this particular gun looks kind of shabby and is a pig in poke at best.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:31 PM
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That one looks as if its' been rode hard and put away wet, as well as being a "Police confiscated weapon." You have no idea how well or not it has been taken care of. As much as I would like to have a shooter grade 38/44, project revolver, unless I could buy that one for a song I would pass. Just to many questions.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:49 PM
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Talking 38/44 HD

Looks like an early transition model with the short stroke action and the long (5") barrel as the standard was a 4" one. That might be a plus. The mechanics of the gun would be my concern; endshake; cylinder/barrel gap; push off; timeing issues are a few. My 2 cents!
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Old 12-05-2012, 05:18 PM
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I think 450-550 would be an OK range as far as price goes. They are fairly tough guns and unless this one is seriously abused I'd be surprised if it had mechanical problems. HDs are great, accurate guns!
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Old 12-05-2012, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Watson View Post
I thought a HD became the Model 20 and that Model 21 was the final resting place of the .44 Military.

Any road, I agree this particular gun looks kind of shabby and is a pig in poke at best.
I stand corrected .
Tbury
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:00 PM
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Thanks guys, you're the best, helped me to clarify my thoughts, I let my bid ride and see what happens.
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:37 PM
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I think there is a nickel on for sale here on the forum.
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:37 PM
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This is not a transition gun as it has the short action. It is a 38/44 Heavy Duty. It should have shipped in the 55-56 time frame but only a letter will tell for sure.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:50 PM
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It doesn't look near as bad in the other pictures. I think $550 would be fine but not with shipping and fees added.
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