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Old 06-07-2017, 09:35 PM
Glashaus Glashaus is online now
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Default A Pre M10 Found a New Home

Ok, I really wasn't looking, it sort of found me. Two weeks ago I was on one of my Gunbroker saved searches vendors sites, just looking. This is a vendor that deals with police trade ins and confiscations, I have bought from them a half dozen times or so.

This time they had a few S&W revolvers, one of them was a 4" nickel pre M10, from the serial number, front sight, lack of the upper frame screw, I put it's production year at 1955, it had worn diamond stocks. Starting price was $179, still had five days to go in the auction. I had just bought two 5" nickel M10-5's so was not really looking to buy this one but I wanted to see what it would bring. The seller usually only takes two pictures, not very good ones either, their descriptions are pretty good. I put a watch on it so that I would be notified before the auction ended so I could check on it.

The auction ended at 8:00 am Eastern on a Wednesday, I had forgotten about it until I checked my emails after I got to work that Wednesday and saw the auction ending notice. I logged on with 20 minutes left in the auction and the opening price was still $179, there were no bids. Well I couldn't bear to see this old trooper not have a home so I placed my bid and waited, no other bidders and it was mine at $179.

I picked it up today and it is a fine old pre M10, looks like it has a lot of years left. The stocks are worn but they do number to the gun. Carried a lot, shot very little, typical of police firearms. I will clean it up and see how it looks. Hard to beat a classic S&W for under two bills these days. I will just add this to my accumulation of Smith & Wesson's and call it a day. I do need to not spend so much time on Gunbroker, seems like I can usually find something on there that I need.



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Old 06-07-2017, 09:55 PM
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Don't you just hate it when that happens?

Great pick up.
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:58 AM
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Nice gun! And great price! Congrats.

But when did K frames go from 5 to 4 screw? Wasn't it '56?
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:27 AM
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Nice score. To think I thought I did good getting a re-finished non-runner for under $200 in a local sale. Once in a while you get lucky on GB, even with the fifteen minute rule, which I love.
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim NNN View Post
Nice gun! And great price! Congrats.

But when did K frames go from 5 to 4 screw? Wasn't it '56?
Jim, you are probably correct! I knew that it was 55 or 56 and for some reason 55 stuck out. I will go back and see why I thought that. Either way is cool!
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:39 AM
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3rd edition of the SCS&W says about 1955 when the top sideplate screw was eliminated.
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:05 AM
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[QUOTE=Targets Guy;139621848]3rd edition of the SCS&W says about 1955 when the top sideplate screw was eliminated.[/QUOTE

I saw that in the 4th Edition too along with the change to a ramp front sight in 1955 and the serial number seemed to be closer to 55 then 56, I suppose I can put it in line for a factory letter
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:25 AM
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need???? but I know what you mean That's happened to be too. there's no cure for it
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Old 06-08-2017, 12:09 PM
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Good catch!

Eliminate upper side plate screw change order 12/13/55 the 4th screw on New I (~ #640980 on .32s) & New J frames; on 9/7/55 the 5th screw on K frames, and on 9/7/56 the 5th screw on N frames.
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Old 06-08-2017, 02:52 PM
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Oh, it was '56 for the N frames. Thanks for the correction, Hondo44 and Targets Guy.

I believe the OP got the best deal on a pre-model K frame that I've seen in years. Have fun.
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:10 PM
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Outstanding!!!

(If the seller is in Pennsylvania, I've bought from them too. Good folks!!)

Best,
Charles
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:17 PM
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That is one seriously nice looking gun. Congratulations Glashaus!
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:58 AM
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Outstanding!!!

(If the seller is in Pennsylvania, I've bought from them too. Good folks!!)

Best,
Charles
Thanks Charles!

The seller is in Alabama.

Regard,
Tom
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:15 PM
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Thanks Charles!

The seller is in Alabama.

Regard,
Tom
I went and found the seller, planning to add them to my saved searches for the trade-ins & confiscated guns, but they refuse to ship to CA. Some dealers just don't like a few extra mouse clicks in order to sell to an eighth of the U.S. population.

I can't wait to move out of this state.
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Old 06-09-2017, 10:54 PM
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Thanks Charles!

The seller is in Alabama.

Regard,
Tom
OK. I have bought from those folks in Montgomery also!!!
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Old 06-18-2017, 10:05 AM
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I was on GunBroker a few days ago and found a set of K frame diamond grips for a buy it now price of $49. They are a couple of years older then my pre M10 but in much better shape then the originals that are on it. They came in yesterday and I really like them! Big improvement!

Original grips



New grips



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Old 06-18-2017, 10:37 AM
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Good catch!

Eliminate upper side plate screw change order 12/13/55 the 4th screw on New I (~ #640980 on .32s) & New J frames; on 9/7/55 the 5th screw on K frames, and on 9/7/56 the 5th screw on N frames.
It is good for Jim to post these dates. But keep in mind there is usually a time lag between when management issues a change order and when production actually shifts to the new configuration. It is pretty uncommon for K frame four screw guns to show up that shipped in 1955; in fact I don't believe I have ever seen one that had a confirmed ship date before 1956. Roy once told me that the actual change is determined by the floor supervisor because older parts get used up before the change is implemented.

I'm much less knowledgeable about postwar I, J and N frames, so I can't speak to those on this issue.

This normal time lag is why, for example, we usually say 1958 for the appearance of model numbers. The change was ordered in 1957, but model numbers on guns don't show up with ship dates prior to 1958.
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Old 06-18-2017, 10:46 AM
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I looked at this same revolver a couple of weeks ago at Gulf State Distributors while I was picking up a Model 28-2 I won.

The thing that threw me was there was not A Large N marked under the barrel. Now, I don't know whether S&W marked this particular gun this way or not. It was a nice solid revolver mechanically.

If it is an original nickel gun, you got a good deal even with the 10% sales tax.
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:05 AM
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Isn't there someone on this forum that restores stocks? I've never seen their work, so I can't speak to quality issues or the max depth of deterioration that can be saved. Just throwing out as a suggestion for numbers matching stocks. I would think a 90% gun would look better with 90% stock restoration if the numbers match.
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:27 AM
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I looked at this same revolver a couple of weeks ago at Gulf State Distributors while I was picking up a Model 28-2 I won.

The thing that threw me was there was not A Large N marked under the barrel. Now, I don't know whether S&W marked this particular gun this way or not. It was a nice solid revolver mechanically.

If it is an original nickel gun, you got a good deal even with the 10% sales tax.
Even better, I am in Texas so no Alabama sales tax. I am pretty sure that it is factory nickel. It is a nice old pre M10. You did good on the 28-2 that you picked up, very solid S&W!
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:34 AM
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......
The thing that threw me was there was not A Large N marked under the barrel. Now, I don't know whether S&W marked this particular gun this way or not.....
We have discussed this issue here before, but I believe the underbarrel finish markings, both the B and the N (the N was always optional even pre-war anyways), were no longer in use after WW II.

Based on my (limited so far) observations, the B disappeared with the British Service model in 1940, likely because that was never produced in nickel, so there was no point in noting the finish. While I don't have the data to back this up, that might have been the end of barrel finish markings.

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Old 06-18-2017, 12:10 PM
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Here are pictures from my Model 10-5 of under the barrel, on the face of the cylinder and on the left side of the frame.
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Old 06-18-2017, 12:28 PM
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We have discussed this issue here before, but I believe the underbarrel finish markings, both the B and the N (the N was always optional even pre-war anyways), were no longer in use after WW II.

Based on my (limited so far) observations, the B disappeared with the British Service model in 1940, likely because that was never produced in nickel, so there was no point in noting the finish. While I don't have the data to back this up, that might have been the end of barrel finish markings.
Well, this isn't quite right.

Before about 1940, blued guns were marked with a B on the barrel flat. There was no marking to indicate nickel. The absence of a B indicated nickel.

After the war, the practice was essentially flipped. There was no B marking to indicate a blue finish. But nickel plated guns generally speaking started getting the N stamp. The N could show up in three places: barrel flat, rear face of the cylinder and the left side of the grip frame, at least sometimes in all three places.

When stainless guns were introduced in 1965, it was common to find an S on the left side of the grip frame. I don't know if this practice was universal, but the stainless guns I have from the 1970s all have this mark.
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Old 06-18-2017, 01:14 PM
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.....But nickel plated guns generally speaking started getting the N stamp. The N could show up in three places: barrel flat, rear face of the cylinder and the left side of the grip frame, at least sometimes in all three places.

When stainless guns were introduced in 1965, it was common to find an S on the left side of the grip frame. I don't know if this practice was universal, but the stainless guns I have from the 1970s all have this mark.
Well, one never stops learning. I haven't handled too many nickeled post-war guns. I knew about the grip frame N, but I certainly have not seen the large N on the barrel as in lamarw's photo above.

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Well, this isn't quite right.

Before about 1940, blued guns were marked with a B on the barrel flat. There was no marking to indicate nickel. The absence of a B indicated nickel.

....
Well, that may not be quite right either, at least going by some other authorities here.

This is a quote from Jim (Hondo44) I saved sometime last year:

"'B' or 'N' stamp: ahead of pre war serial #s on the barrel flat (or in shroud), rear face of yoke, on rear face of cyl by itself, behind the extractor star, and by itself on right side grip frame on commercial guns (only on left side grip frame on post war models) indicates an original Blue finish or an original Nickel finish based upon the corresponding letter. The occasional absence (more prevalent after 1930) of either the 'B' or 'N' can also indicate that it left the factory nickeled. (Also not to be confused with a larger B behind the barrel serial # for the Bright blue optional finish in the post war era - early ‘50s when satin blue was standard.)

“I've seen nickel Triple Locks with N stamps. I've seen them without it, too. Pre-war nickel guns MAY have an N, or they may simply lack B's.” Regards, Lee Jarrett"
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Old 06-18-2017, 01:58 PM
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that may not be quite right either, at least going by some other authorities here.

This is a quote from Jim (Hondo44) I saved sometime last year:

"'B' or 'N' stamp: ahead of pre war serial #s on the barrel flat (or in shroud), rear face of yoke, on rear face of cyl by itself, behind the extractor star, and by itself on right side grip frame on commercial guns (only on left side grip frame on post war models) indicates an original Blue finish or an original Nickel finish based upon the corresponding letter. The occasional absence (more prevalent after 1930) of either the 'B' or 'N' can also indicate that it left the factory nickeled. (Also not to be confused with a larger B behind the barrel serial # for the Bright blue optional finish in the post war era - early 50s when satin blue was standard.)

I've seen nickel Triple Locks with N stamps. I've seen them without it, too. Pre-war nickel guns MAY have an N, or they may simply lack B's. Regards, Lee Jarrett"
Sure. I remember those statements too. I certainly don't consider myself to be the ultimate authority and I highly respect both Jim and Lee.

What I will repeat is that I'm no authority at all on I or N frame guns. But I've looked at thousands of K frames (pre- and post- war) and I don't remember ever seeing an N on a prewar nickel gun's barrel flat. They all seem to simply lack the B. So, I can only speak from my own experience, which is not infallible. (And by the way, the 1930s is the decade of which I am the least knowledgeable when it comes to the K frames.)

Thanks for this exchange. It has been quite interesting.
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Old 06-18-2017, 02:43 PM
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Glashaus, It certainly looked factory nickel when I examined it. I have acquired a number of S&W revolvers from GSD, and everyone of the earlier ones had matching serial numbered stocks.

You got a good solid revolver along with a good price on the revolver. Glad it found a good home.
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Old 06-18-2017, 04:13 PM
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Glashaus, It certainly looked factory nickel when I examined it. I have acquired a number of S&W revolvers from GSD, and everyone of the earlier ones had matching serial numbered stocks.

You got a good solid revolver along with a good price on the revolver. Glad it found a good home.
Thanks! I have gotten a few S&W's from GSD, mostly when I wasn't really looking! The best so far was a nickel 3" M13-3 that I got from them last Fall!
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Old 06-18-2017, 06:38 PM
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Thanks! I have gotten a few S&W's from GSD, mostly when I wasn't really looking! The best so far was a nickel 3" M13-3 that I got from them last Fall!


I would love to see a nickel 3" model 13


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Old 06-18-2017, 06:49 PM
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I would love to see a nickel 3" model 13


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Check with Lee Jarrett. I believe he bought one from a fellow Forum member while at the S&WCA meeting.
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Old 06-19-2017, 07:27 AM
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I would love to see a nickel 3" model 13


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My M13-3 3" nickel. From the tag that was on it when I got it, I believe that this was either a trade in or a confiscation from Mecklenburg County NC.

Picked up a 3" M13-3 Nickel

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Old 06-19-2017, 08:04 AM
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Thank you Glashaus for sharing such a beautiful revolver!

And thank you also to all the others that shared their knowledge about this, and other S&W's, as this is the reason I enjoy coming here, and am able to learn something every time I do!
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