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Old 07-12-2017, 08:47 PM
HueyBryan HueyBryan is offline
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Default S&W Heavy Duty

Hello! I just got this gun in a trade and was wanting to know more about it. The Serial is S 731## and has a star between the letter and numbers. It is in pretty good shape but has holster wear and Franzite stag grips. What year was it made and an estimated value would hopefully make me happy.

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Old 07-12-2017, 09:06 PM
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Looks like 1949 or 1950 far as I can tell WAG on value is roughly $900 plus but that is VERY rough indeed. I am sure somebody with more knowledge than I will jump in with a better number.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:01 PM
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The front sight looks modified
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:04 PM
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Default More pics

Here are a couple more pics.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:08 PM
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Definitely modified. I think $900 is optimistic. I would think $6-700. I'm far from an expert tho.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:15 PM
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Front sight has been swapped to a rifle type ramp sight,This was a common mod back in the Day.The Star* means it's been back to the Factory for Work.Remove the Stocks and look on the Left Grip frame for any refinish marks R-B or 3 digit date codes 3.68 for March(3) of 1968(68) for example.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:15 AM
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Did anyone else notice that it is missing "Made in USA" or a 4 line address on the right side of the frame? I would say it 'should' have a 4 line address by that serial number, but it still has the pre-war long action, so maybe a one liner?
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SAFireman View Post
Did anyone else notice that it is missing "Made in USA" or a 4 line address on the right side of the frame? I would say it 'should' have a 4 line address by that serial number, but it still has the pre-war long action, so maybe a one liner?
Is anyone else not seeing the screw that should be located at the front of the trigger guard?
I also have some concerns with the location of the "star," if it is really between the S prefix and any numbers, that does not sound like something the factory would do. This leads me to believe the serial number has been modified.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:33 AM
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The SN suggests a mid-1949 shipment. It is odd that the 4-line stamping is missing and appears to have never been there. The front sight is not original. As a shooter, virtually any HD will be worth at least $500. I'd think this one might go for $600-$700. You might check to see if the chambers have been lengthened to accept .357 cartridges.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:16 PM
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When I get home i will look at frame and take pictures of it and the serial number. It does have a screw on front of trigger guard.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:28 PM
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Default More pics

More pics of the Heavy Duty.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:56 PM
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Welcome to the Forum.

There may not been room on the butt to place the star after the SN.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:59 PM
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Definitely returned to the factory once. No indication whatsoever that the 4-line address was ever stamped. We know that S&W once had a policy of applying 4-line stamps to guns returned for service that did not have them. Apparently not this one. I'd still like to know the full story behind S&W's stamping practice for serviced guns.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:05 PM
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Looking a photo #2, it appears as if a lanyard ring attachment point had been filled in. I had a 38/44 that also had the lanyard ring attachment point filled in, but the serial number was re stamped on the grip frame. From the markings it appears as if yours had a trip back to the factory in November 1951.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:40 PM
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I be curious to hear what the barrel actually measures, from the front of the cylinder to the muzzle? I wonder if it might have been cut down, hence the rifle ramp front sight.

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Old 07-13-2017, 11:42 PM
HueyBryan HueyBryan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave T View Post
I be curious to hear what the barrel actually measures, from the front of the cylinder to the muzzle? I wonder if it might have been cut down, hence the rifle ramp front sight.

Dave
I will measure it in the morning but looking online I saw a few that have the same sight.
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Old 07-14-2017, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HueyBryan View Post
I will measure it in the morning but looking online I saw a few that have the same sight.
I have seen that modification a few times too, but it's not original.
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Old 07-14-2017, 07:30 AM
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Cool gun, and a relatively late one to have the rework star stamped on it.

Given the lack of the right forward frame stamping, the work in 11/51 may have been a refinish. No explanation for why the address wasn't redone if so, however.
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:15 PM
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I think it should have the one line stamp. Mine is of the same period. The craftsmanship of the lockwork in this revolvers is amazing. Enjoy your "new" revolver it is special in every way you look at it.
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Old 07-15-2017, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave T View Post
I be curious to hear what the barrel actually measures, from the front of the cylinder to the muzzle? I wonder if it might have been cut down, hence the rifle ramp front sight.

Dave
Here is the measurement.
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Old 07-15-2017, 07:25 PM
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I'm wondering if the return to the factory might not have been for cutting a 6" barrel down to 4", and sight relocated? The missing "Made in U.S.A." stamp mystifies me.
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Old 07-15-2017, 07:31 PM
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Probably the camera angle but it doesn't look like the tape is completely up against the cylinder, like the actual measurement might be a bit over 4". Which, given the none S&W front sight would be another indication it was cut down.

H Richard, do you think the factory would have put a rifle ramp on the barrel after cutting it from 6" to ~4"? Doesn't seem likely. More likely is that a gunsmith some where cut the barrel and put that sight on at the then owners request. In other words, he had it done locally.

All speculation on my part of course. It's still a neat ol' Heavy Duty.

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Last edited by Dave T; 07-15-2017 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 07-15-2017, 08:19 PM
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Could it have been refinished/reworked more than once? The address line may have been polished off outside the factory.
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Old 07-15-2017, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by old bear View Post
Looking a photo #2, it appears as if a lanyard ring attachment point had been filled in. I had a 38/44 that also had the lanyard ring attachment point filled in, but the serial number was re stamped on the grip frame. From the markings it appears as if yours had a trip back to the factory in November 1951.
Looks kinda familiar don't it ole Pard? I liked your barrel length better, but this is another nice old gun. I don't know what you paid but I'd be in for $600.
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