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Old 04-02-2017, 06:43 PM
apotter11 apotter11 is offline
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Default 1902 1st change Square butt?

I am looking at a serial number 58xxx hand ejector. The serialm number says it is 1902 1st change (range 33804-62449) . This is a target, with square butt.
Is this possible?

Al
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Old 04-02-2017, 06:48 PM
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Is it a .38 Special or .32-20? If the latter, I suspect you have a Model of 1905 from around 1913. So do all SNs match?

Last edited by DWalt; 04-02-2017 at 06:51 PM.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:26 PM
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I do not have the gun, but it is listed as a .38 spl. Best I can make out the grainy pic, the barrel is 38 S&W Special. I suspect they lost a digit in the SN, making it 1905 ch 4. listing documentation is sketchy, no mention or pics of serial numbers.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:39 PM
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In the SCSW, the text under the .38 Model of 1902, 1st change, notes that "... the first square butt K frames show up in the middle of this model serial number range at about 58,000". So if the seller got his info there, that could fit.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:41 PM
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It is possible that at a SN around 58xxx, it could have a square butt. Which would make it a Model of 1905. SN 586xx (.38 Special) shipped in 6/05.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:55 PM
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I have asked for additional information. This may be one for my collection.
Re-read the SCSW - this is a 5-screw, if sn is correct then 1905 would work, but would make this one of the first!
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:07 PM
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A 38 Special M&P with serial number 582XX shipped July 1906 in the SWCA database, so you probably are looking at what should be called a very early Model 1905. Is there a cylinder stop screw just ahead of the trigger guard?

Added: Sorry, I just added this post as you were already posting yours. 5 screw would be appropriate for a Model 1905. Roy Jink book states the Model 1905 started with serial number 62,450, but there has been lots of debate about that date.
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Last edited by glowe; 04-02-2017 at 08:13 PM. Reason: added comment
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:09 PM
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Yes, it would be an early Model 1905. There has been quite a bit discussed in the past on this forum about the introduction of the K-frame square butt and how it screwed up everyone's model nomenclature.
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Old 04-02-2017, 08:23 PM
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The pictures of this gun also show the barrel flared at the frame, wasn't this a change from the 1902 straight barrel also? I am still leary of this gun, it has a "Made in U.S.A." on right side, but once again S&W did some inconsistent things.....
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Old 04-02-2017, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apotter11 View Post
..... I am still leary of this gun, it has a "Made in U.S.A." on right side, but once again S&W did some inconsistent things.....
The MADE IN USA is a red flag. That was introduced in mid-1922, and then none of this discussion would matter. You might be right with your missing digit in the serial.
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Old 04-02-2017, 09:26 PM
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Check for a star on the butt. If the gun was returned before WWII, the factory often would restamp revolvers using the roll stamps that they had at the time. I have seen a factory refinished WWI 455 HE with the 4 line English/Spanish frame stamp. That single line MADE IN USA ran from 1922 until 1948.
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Old 04-02-2017, 09:48 PM
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A factory re-work is a possibility. And the flared barrel would also be correct on a 1902 of that serial; only the original no-change still had the straight-tube barrel root of the 1899.

It really all comes down to a clear photo of the butt with the complete serial and anything else there visible.
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Old 04-13-2017, 06:58 PM
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the gun arrived at my FFL today. the real sn is six digit, nowhere near the advertised one. still a nice piece and I will send pics when I pick it up. All numbers match the real serial number. Not going to keep the custom target grips with a brass inlay diamond.

I have a call into the seller to ask where the gun I bought really is. My FFL is stuck with a receiving sn and the one he is transferring.

Al
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Old 04-13-2017, 08:30 PM
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Well yes, you clearly received a different gun than was advertised. You have a Model 1905 - 4th Change with s/n 58XXXX. It's from the approximate period of the very late 1930's to 1940. The as advertised earlier gun is valued $100 to 200 more in equal condition.

The MADE IN U.S.A. is correct for that model and vintage. It should have a large S&W monogram on the right side plate. The target model is worth a premium if originally factory installed. A matching serial # on the bottom of the rear sight (when removed) will verify that.

SERIAL # LOCATIONS:
Always use optical magnification including a flashlight when looking at or for serial numbers to observe the information accurately.

To confirm all parts are original, check for the 6 matching serial # locations for fixed sight pre war Hand Ejectors and all post war Hand Ejectors thru ~1956 and a few as much as 3 years later.

1. Gun butt - or fore strap on I frames/single shots with grips that cover the butt

2. Barrel - bottom of barrel or in extractor shroud

3. Yoke - on rear face only visible thru a chamber with a flashlight

4. Extractor star - backside

5. Cylinder - rear face

6. Right stock only - on back; stamped, scratched or penciled depending on vintage and stock material. (except most post war target grips because individual fitting not required.)


Pre war fixed sighted guns have serial #s in 6* locations, target** models as many as 9. Triple Locks have 7 including the mid lock cam plate, therefore 10 locations on Target models.

*Post War continued the 6 fixed sight locations thru ~1956, and 9 s/n locations on early Post War Transitional target models with pre war target sights only, thru 1957, but dropped the 3 target sight locations post war on the new Micro-click sighted models, which were no longer specifically fitted to the top strap.

**Target models will have the serial number as shown:

1. front sight blade,
2. under rear sight, and
3. rear sight blade.

If the s/n is more than 4 digits, the front and rear sight blades can have a partial s/n. All three parts must be removed to observe the #s. Non-numbered front and rear sight blades have typically been replaced, in most observations.

We owe the Russians a vote of thanks; having been the 1st to require multi-serial # locations on their S&W #3 contract revolvers.

TARGET SIGHT NUMBERING:
Photo by Mike Priwer

Photo by Mike Priwer
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Last edited by Hondo44; 04-13-2017 at 08:34 PM.
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:36 PM
apotter11 apotter11 is offline
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I got the gun, all numbers match, what they called sn was assembly number.

see current thread "1926 k target"

for me this is a great find.

Al
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:46 PM
apotter11 apotter11 is offline
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you provide great info. this has small monogram left side, serrated backstrap and trigger and stepped extractor cutout making my guess 1926-1926.

didn't consider the sn under sight but there it is!

Thanks

al
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Old 04-19-2017, 08:28 PM
mikepriwer mikepriwer is offline
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One has to remember that all pre-WW2 .38 K-frames are in one long serial number series, that runs from 1 ( the first 1899 ) all the way through 1000000 in 1942). There are several different models included in this range: 1899, 1902, 1905, K-22 Outdoorsman, and K-32. With the exception of the model of 1899, the other four are running concurrently, from their individual inception to 1000000. The model of 1902 starts at ~21000, and the model of 1905 starts at 58000. The K-22's and K-32 start much later, somewhere around 600000.

The 1902's and 1905's are identical, no matter what the serial number, except for the butt configuration. The 1902's are always round-butt, and the 1905's are always square butt.

There is, of course, the other pre-WW2 K-frame series, used for 32-20's, and a very very few K-32's.

Regards, Mike Priwer
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Old 04-20-2017, 02:49 AM
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I realize (or at least think I realize) we've been through all this before----and as best as I recall the distinction between 1902's and 1905's is based upon butt shape and brochures of the period-------only. (??)

So what's this one? It letters as a ".38 Military & Police Model of 1902 First Change Target". The serial number is 59794. It's a "pre 5 screw 4 screw", 6 1/2" barrel, SQUARE BUTT, shipped February 26, 1906, and delivered to a S&W employee. The letter notes it's in the serial range for a round butt, and "certainly was shipped after the square butt model had been introduced".

And so------------------------------??

Ralph Tremaine

Last edited by rct269; 04-20-2017 at 02:51 AM.
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