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Old 04-16-2018, 11:11 PM
Kollector03 Kollector03 is offline
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Default 1954 Pre-28 Highway Patrolman

Smith & Wesson 1954 Pre 28 Highway Patrolman .357 Magnum revolver. First year production. Serial number S 116835 and matches on frame, inside ejector rod housing, and cylinder. Nice honest vintage 5-screw N-Frame revolver that shows some nice holster wear and patina from duty usage. Grips and trigger shoe are not original.

I recently traded into this revolver, but soon discovered that this is more of a collector piece than a field carry or a daily shooter.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:55 PM
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No offense, but the condition and originality aren't really what collectors are looking for. I'd carry it, shoot it, and enjoy one of S&W's pistols from
a great era.
Mike
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Old 04-17-2018, 12:12 AM
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Agree it is best described as a shooter. Franzite plastic grips are far from original and the cylinder shows substantial wear, somewhat more so than the frame and barrel. I don't know how to explain that if that cylinder SN matches to the frame.

I show a SN on my list that is very close to S116835 which shipped in 9/54, so it is a first year of production. The first HP was SN S103500.
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Old 04-17-2018, 06:02 AM
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I'd call that a perfect candidate for a premium refinishing job and new grips, but I am not one of those folks who worries about losing collector value so much as simply pleasing myself.
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:31 AM
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Refinishing definitely destroys value.

Not a rare collectible. Use it and enjoy it.

Here's mine about 412 digits earlier than yours (S116413) Shipped 9/3/54 to a hardware store in Seattle. Shows some holster wear but does still wear its original stocks.

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Old 04-17-2018, 11:17 AM
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If there is anyone in your immediate area who blues guns, you might see what he would charge to just blue the cylinder only. You could clean it up by hand yourself using #800 or finer sandpaper before bluing. The HPs had a matte finish when they left the factory anyway so a high polish is unnecessary. Bead blasting with fine media would also work OK. While correct stocks would be somewhat costly, you should be able to find some more presentable N-frame grips (not necessarily factory) at a reasonable price by keeping an eye on eBay listings.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:38 AM
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Default 1954 Pre-28 Highway Patrolman

I agree, shoot it like it was meant. I shoot mine, serial S115235.

http://smith-wessonforum.com/attachm...9&d=1486149366
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:48 AM
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I woldn’t blue part of it as it would be more of a mismatch than now. It would also add costs and not improve its value or shootability. I would just enjoy shooting it.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TTSH View Post
I'd call that a perfect candidate for a premium refinishing job and new grips, but I am not one of those folks who worries about losing collector value so much as simply pleasing myself.
I agree. I've often wondered how you destroy any collectors value, if it has no collectors value in the first place.

I might not refinish it (I'm too cheap to do that), but I'd darn sure shoot it.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:51 AM
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Keep in mind you can spend money to "pretty" it up but it wont increase its value one dime. Its a fine pistol as it is, shoot and enjoy it. Some of my favorite shooting revolvers are the beaters like my old M10, M64 and a speed six that I don't have to worry about getting wet in the field or dings and scratches
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:57 AM
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Wonder if an earlier owner used something on the cylinder to clean powder off...... or just ????????

While the bluing is worn...... no sign of rust or pitting.

I'd spend $120 for a set of real (Executioner) Stags and make that my woods carry in a nice Bianchi 111 Cyclone cross-draw!

Edit: good candidate for hard chrome!

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Old 04-17-2018, 12:14 PM
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The old Highway Patrolmen just beg to be shot. Don't worry about the collector's value. Shoot it.
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Old 04-17-2018, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6actual View Post
Keep in mind you can spend money to "pretty" it up but it wont increase its value one dime.
When it comes to dollar value, this is completely true.

However, dollar value isn't always consistent with personal value. I have guns that I value personally far above their dollar value.

If it increases the owner's enjoyment of it, then it's an increase in value for the owner, just not "dollar value".

Last edited by RobertJ.; 04-17-2018 at 01:33 PM.
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Old 04-17-2018, 02:06 PM
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I'd leave it just the way it is, a fantastic example of hand labor craftsmanship.

If you refinished it, you would risk losing those oh so flat frame & sideplate sides, and all the other dang near perfectly polished areas. They did them right back then. Pre-war2 then the '50s were another time in manufacturing and it would be a shame to take that away from examples.

I think that gun looks phenomenal just the way it is. Go run some magnum through it, built like a tank.

Last edited by iPac; 04-17-2018 at 02:09 PM.
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Old 04-17-2018, 03:24 PM
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Get rid of the trigger shoe which is really just for single action target shooting. It's a real detriment for double action work.

If you have the cylinder refinished(which is purely your business) be sure and tell the bluer you need black, not blue. S&W made 27s blue and 28s black.
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Old 04-17-2018, 05:11 PM
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The only finish difference between the HP(M28) and the .357 Mag(M27) is that the latter has mirror polished metal prior to bluing, the M28 does not. The reason for my suggestion of bluing the cylinder only is to avoid rounding of corners and messing up the sharpness of markings and sideplate of the frame which does not look that bad. I don't think the blued cylinder will be that badly mismatched with the frame afterward and at worst will look much better than it does now. Alternatively, the entire gun could be given the beadblast treatment (using very fine media) and then hot blued. I have done that on numerous guns and it looks very good.
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Old 04-17-2018, 06:06 PM
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If you really are unhappy with what you have, sell it and buy one that is in the condition you desire. Calculate what it will cost to partially / completely reblue it at a reputable shop. Don't forget to add in shipping both ways if the shop is not local. You may be able to find one with an acceptable finish for less.
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Old 04-18-2018, 03:26 PM
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i like the look of this vintage smith and have no plan to refinish it if i keep it. i traded into it and my preference for a field .357 would be a 4 inch K- frame.

Last edited by Kollector03; 04-19-2018 at 12:44 AM.
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Old 04-18-2018, 09:09 PM
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If it were mine I'd leave it like it is except the fake stags . I would carry it and shoot the hell out of it .

Eddie
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Old 04-18-2018, 09:20 PM
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I'd just like to know how it got that way. The rest of the gun looks great. Why or how would the cylinder lose all of its bluing like that?

I'm thinking replacement cylinder maybe?
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Old 04-18-2018, 09:42 PM
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Except for the cylinder, it looks fairly nice!

I agree that you would never get the cylinder to match well if you re-blue just it.

So - if it were mine - I would leave the rest and "Nickel" the cylinder to make a pinto out of it

That would make it quite a conversation piece that would look unique.

Nice gun - carry it proud.

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Old 04-18-2018, 10:48 PM
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Have a local smith do a trigger job - or Mr. Smith - Hand polish it. Smooth it. Send to Armaloy in TX. Satin finish inside & out. You will have a firearm for the ages.
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Old 04-18-2018, 11:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Swissfan View Post
I agree, shoot it like it was meant. I shoot mine, serial S115235.

http://smith-wessonforum.com/attachm...9&d=1486149366
Very nice overall and I love those unrelieved diamond targets! Looks great!
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TTSH View Post
I'd just like to know how it got that way. The rest of the gun looks great. Why or how would the cylinder lose all of its bluing like that?

I'm thinking replacement cylinder maybe?
cylinder serial matches, so its original.
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:19 AM
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Quote:
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cylinder serial matches, so its original.
Well, so much for my speculation. Deepens the mystery even further. In all my long sorry years, I've not seen that happen to a revolver.
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Old 04-19-2018, 05:38 AM
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I wouldn't mind having 1 like it! A "shooter" of course. The grips/ stocks are not to my liking (doesn't matter). I have a 6" 28 no dash from 1960. Congratulations on your trade. Bob
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Old 04-19-2018, 07:23 AM
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Not everything needs to be a barbecue pistol, working/field guns with personality and history have a lot of appeal to me and many others. I actually prefer shooter grade on pistols that have a job other than sitting in my safe
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Old 04-19-2018, 10:58 AM
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I have an old 6 1/2 .357 Magnum made in that era that has a similar looking cylinder. The rest of the gun looks different, but it is not as faded as this one here. The action feels like it has never been used!

I used to think it had been refinished, but it shows no tell tale signs, so I guess it was something in the bluing process, steel mix or something that went wrong. I'm using it as is. :-)
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TTSH View Post
Well, so much for my speculation. Deepens the mystery even further. In all my long sorry years, I've not seen that happen to a revolver.
i think the cylinder got worn by an ill fitting holster with a very abrasive lining.
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
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I wouldn't mind having 1 like it! A "shooter" of course. The grips/ stocks are not to my liking (doesn't matter). I have a 6" 28 no dash from 1960. Congratulations on your trade. Bob
the grips are going for sure. i think i may warm up to it with some different stocks on it,
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Old 04-19-2018, 03:39 PM
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Don't throw the Franzite grips away. They were fairly popular in the 1950s-60s and some still like them, especially N-frames. You might get $20-$25 if you list them on eBay.
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:48 PM
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Quote:
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the grips are going for sure. i think i may warm up to it with some different stocks on it,
You are right about different stocks changing attitude.
These stocks were on my no dash for years. They feel great to me. Bob
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Old 05-03-2018, 09:51 PM
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Well, went ahead and for some replacement stocks for it. The Faux stag are just not for me. Ditched the trigger shoe as well.

Work in progress.
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Old 05-06-2018, 10:21 PM
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Quote:
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Well, went ahead and for some replacement stocks for it. The Faux stag are just not for me. Ditched the trigger shoe as well.

Work in progress.
So far, you've done about what I would have. I'd only invest in a comparable condition set of original magna or perhaps target grips. I'm with the 'don't do a lot crowd, particularly refinishing. Unlikely an economic move. I believe the cylinder wear is commensurate with some of the big old honkin Highway Patrol style holsters, snug fit only accountable in the cylinder (widest point) area. Likely a lot of range time firing from holster. I have a 'pre' Model 21 4", exhibiting a bit of this type of predominant wear.

Congrats on a worthy Smith and enjoy!
My take
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Old 05-09-2018, 10:12 PM
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To refinish, or not to refinish that’s the question? I went through this with the military surplus guns, funny the guy who is a guru on the surplus guns said not to touch them all his guns had the same color stain and finish. Lol.

I purchased three pre numbered guns k series that was called freckling by the P.O. on The finish. The orange slight freckling turned out to be dried oil. All three are 99.99% condition after cleaning them.

I won’t refinish for now, I have redone rifle stocks that I plan hunting with. I learned how to steam the wooden stocks to remove some of the marked in the wood. But I do leave some history marks on the wood. Then it’s 8 to 10 coats of tung oil to preserve the wood. When done right you can’t tell they have been redone.
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Old 05-10-2018, 01:02 AM
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I think I may know what happened....

The pictures show a bit of a brownish tint on the cylinder, but is the predominate color a dingy grey? With the low spots showing darker color through the grey?

I have a model 28 that looks like that all over. Here's how it happens....

Begin with a 21 year old who knows everything. That 21 year old purchases his first firearm, which happens to be a used Model 28. Our hero doesn't yet understand that honest holster wear is a sign of long term devotion and wants his new (to him) revolver to look perfect. He's broke and can't afford a professional refinish, so he takes it upon himself to "fix it."

Our intrepid young man, being a patient sort, spends almost an entire 20 minutes using a scotch-brite pad and printers solvent to remove most of the factory finish. He then douses the entire thing in Birchwood Casey cold blue that he purchased from the local bait and tackle shop. In the dim light of his Dad's garage (and before the cold blue has dried) it looks perfect.

Fast forward 29 years and the whole gun looks very much like your cylinder.

I'm betting that someone "touched up" the cylinder a few decades ago and what you have now is old cold blue.

Check the area around the cylinder latch and recoil shield in the second picture. That's where the younger version of me didn't take enough time to remove the old finish before applying the cold blue. The cylinder flutes on your gun look similar in your pictures.
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Last edited by Shotguncoach; 05-10-2018 at 01:12 AM.
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Old 05-10-2018, 04:23 PM
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I have two 1954 first year highway patrol's. a 6in. and a 4in. the 4 in. has grashorn grips and a Tyler T, the 6 in. needs some,,,,,,,,,,,

Last edited by olskool; 05-10-2018 at 04:24 PM.
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Old 05-10-2018, 04:50 PM
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diecidecimi diecidecimi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bananaman View Post
You are right about different stocks changing attitude.
These stocks were on my no dash for years. They feel great to me. Bob
Of course: Herrett's shooting stars skip checkered.....!
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Old 05-10-2018, 09:41 PM
Kollector03 Kollector03 is offline
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settled on a pair of SW target stocks.....
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Old 05-10-2018, 10:28 PM
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Those targets are perfect for your HP. Functional , nicely aged - perfect.

As to the cylinder ... I think it's plum pretty!
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Old 05-14-2018, 12:23 AM
Kollector03 Kollector03 is offline
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Those targets are perfect for your HP. Functional , nicely aged - perfect.

As to the cylinder ... I think it's plum pretty!

I'm digging the worn finish patina as well.
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