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Old 08-12-2017, 02:56 PM
fishead fishead is offline
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Default help to ID old .32 long

My old uncle just passed and I ended up with his old .32

Aunt says he had this gun and ammo on bedroom shelf for over 50 years. Really happy to have this cool oldie.
I dont know anything else about gun and any help would be great.


Last date stamped ontop of barrel is sept. 14 09 . I cant yet get grips off to look for serial # but I got this # from underside of barrel 230522.
4inch, ejector,fixed sight, 5 screw, with strain screw

thank you for your help
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Old 08-12-2017, 03:11 PM
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Welcome to the forums from the Wiregrass! Your revolver is a 32 hand ejector model 1903, 5th change. it shipped between 1910 and 1920. It appears that the gun has been refinished. I can't quite make out if the hammer and Trigger are nickel. If they are then the gun has been refinished. But as an heirloom that doesn't really matter because these guns are fun to shoot.

Guy
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Old 08-12-2017, 03:42 PM
fishead fishead is offline
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thank you Guy. I thought maybe the gun had been refinished because the stamped areas on gun are not crisp.
Are the numbers I included the actual serial # or do I need to keep working on removing grips to get #.
What do you recommend for ammo ?
thanks again,
James
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Old 08-12-2017, 04:12 PM
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The closest SN I have listed is 2280xx which shipped in 3/1916. Yours should be close to the same date. I thought for a second yours could have been a .32 Regulation Police (due to the grips on it, which are incorrect for yours), but the SN is too low to be one of those. The "legal" serial number will be stamped on the butt, and you must remove the grips to see it. It should be the same as that stamped on the barrel flat. I would say the plated finish is not original to the gun, as the hammer and trigger are plated. S&W never plated hammers and triggers. Regarding ammunition, shoot whatever you can get. There isn't much choice available, and .32 S&W Long ammo is not the easiest to find. You can also use the shorter .32 S&W round. It may be easier to locate. I won't recommend the practice for several reasons, but some use .32 Automatic ammo.

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Old 08-12-2017, 04:14 PM
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Unless the barrel has been changed, the number on the butt would be the same. However you might want to take those grips off and make sure that there's not any rust on the butt. Then you can check the serial number there. Any 32 Smith & Wesson long cartridges should work fine in your gun. They also make a short cartridge 32 S&W which is the first of the Centerfire 32 Caliber cartridges that came out in the 1870s. You can shoot those as well.

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Old 08-12-2017, 04:47 PM
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thank you guys for your help.
I have a good set of snap on screw drivers that I have been using to try and remove grips. I am trying not to strip or snap off screw heads and have been soaking them with blaster. I never thought about the possibility of barrel having been replaced. I need to get grips off to confirm.
I think I will try to find some .32 shorts to see if the dang thing fires.

thanks again
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:33 PM
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32 long is safe to shoot and likely the same price as the short 32. The grips look like the black hard rubber that were an option for your gun.

I'm surprised the screws are that hard to get out. They're steel screws in brass escutcheons, so they can't rust together.
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:15 PM
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hondo,
thanks for the ammo info.
nobody is more surprised than me about the stuck grip screws. I have been a mechanic for over 30 years and have seen my share of stuck screws. I may have to drill them out.

thanks again
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:52 PM
Hondo44 Hondo44 is online now
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Can't even use heat!

I think I'd twist them until they gave or broke, but I doubt the'd break before coming loose.
To drill, the screw is ruined anyway. So I'd use an exact fitting screwdriver blade that went clear to the bottom of the screw slot. Smith grip screws have a deep slot.

If the head splits at the slot or breaks, then I'd drill.

I have sources for new screws if you need them.
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Old 08-12-2017, 07:35 PM
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Possibly someone put Loctite on the grip threads? Might try putting a small soldering pen on the screw, then try. I have never experienced a frozen grip screw.
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Old 08-12-2017, 08:23 PM
fishead fishead is offline
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hondo and dewalt ,

hondo i may have to take you up on the new screws when done.

dewalt - I was thinking same thing. My uncle was a great old guy but was never one for reading labels. I think he may have used permanent thread locker on screws and is probably laughing at me right now. Will try soldering iron on screws then will break and drill if I have to.

Does anybody know if it is alright to dry fire this gun ?
I have no intentions of selling but any idea what a refinished gun like this is worth ? The gun will go to my son when i am gone but just curious
added couple more pics
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