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Old 05-16-2018, 03:40 PM
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Default Triple Lock just sold.

I know nothing about the seller or buyer, but I was watching a .44 Triple Lock go to sale on GB this Monday. https://www.gunbroker.com/item/768448052

I must say it seemed to have brought a strong price. Perhaps the market is climbing north. Comments?

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Old 05-16-2018, 03:48 PM
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With original finish, not too surprising. But with a 1952 factory refinish?
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Old 05-16-2018, 03:48 PM
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Throw another log on the fire...
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Old 05-16-2018, 03:50 PM
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Wow! And it's refinished... Wonder what that makes my .455 TL worth?
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Old 05-16-2018, 04:03 PM
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Could’ve been two or three guys in a bidding war that just “had” to have it? There is no rhyme or reason to GB auctions sometimes as one day an item goes crazy and a week later the same model brings much less...
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Old 05-16-2018, 04:30 PM
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Top condition guns have and will always bring top prices----any guns. Factor in the market's hunger for Triple Locks, and any wonderment about this price seems misplaced---to me.

When I see a gun like this, my first thought is, "WOW--- I wonder how long it will be (IF EVER!!!) before I see another one like this?!!" My second thought is, "It might be a good idea to snap this sucker up. If/when I find an original this good, I can dump this and get that. In the meantime---I'm a happy camper."

And guess what?!! If/when this gun's new owner finds an original this good. and dumps this one, he's going to get more than he paid for it. Now, are all those who want a nice looking TL going to be standing in line for this one? Nope---but it only takes one---and there are A LOT more than one out there.

So it is written by me---just one.

Ralph Tremaine

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Old 05-16-2018, 04:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CptCurl View Post
..
I must say it seemed to have brought a strong price. Perhaps the market is climbing north. Comments?
For a refinished specimen, in less than pristine condition (is that rust on the top of the trigger?), the end price seems high.

As was said, I would be careful drawing any sweeping conclusions about “the market” from an auction like this. Not enough sell on a regular basis to make any general proclamations; it’s mostly who happens to see the auction and decides to get in the game.

We had an instructive situation with 2” Colt Commandos on GB we were watching on the Colt forum recently. One, with letter, sold after lively bidding around 2400, Just some weeks earlier, another, also lettered, from the same shipment and clearly in better condition, had sold for 1800 with only two bids. You just can’t tell beforehand.
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Old 05-16-2018, 04:58 PM
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Having been responsible for producing high-dollar auctions for several years (not gun related, but just about everything else), I am here to tell you there is no way to reliably predict auction prices. Most items I sold, by policy, had to be appraised before the auction sale and seldom were the appraisals anywhere close (in either direction) to the final hammer down price. I remember one auction selling six Rolls Royce cars where the appraiser hit within several thousand dollars of the winning bids, but that appraiser was probably the foremost expert in Rolls Royce prices in the USA. And he operated from a small town in Ohio.
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Old 05-16-2018, 05:03 PM
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Don't get me wrong. It's a nice gun, but it's not original at all.

There are several things about it that bother me:

The dome on the pin that captures the rebound spring is flattened. I don't think S&W would flatten this pin in a factory refinish, though I may be wrong. Have a look:


In the same image you can also see that nothing was done to restore the color case hardening of the trigger. The hammer is likewise. I would think a factory refinish would have attended to this.



The pins at the front of the ejector rod shroud are askew. The bottom one looks good on the left but has a lot of protrusion on the right:


The top one protrudes on the left:




The front latch is not fully engaged for some reason. Wonder why?




There's a star on the butt:


And a diamond on the grip frame along with the re-work date:


And a diamond on the barrel:




The large S&W logo doesn't look like any I have seen on a TL. The original TL stamp doesn't say, "Reg. U.S. Pat. Off."




Anyway, these are just my observations. I'm not trying to run the gun down. However, it brought a very impressive price of $4,050.00 plus shipping and transfer fees. That's up there!

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Old 05-16-2018, 05:09 PM
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Somebody with the money wanted it.
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Old 05-16-2018, 05:44 PM
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I concur with the Captain. Looks nice at first glance, but when you start getting down to the details this is not a "top condition" gun. Another thing against it being a factory refinish - in 1952, wouldn't they have restamped it with the Marcas Registradas 4-line stamp?

Someone with more money than sense overpaid on this gun. And it looks to me like there were at least four similarly minded and monied people bidding.

Last edited by Tom K; 05-16-2018 at 05:48 PM.
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Old 05-16-2018, 06:47 PM
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I did see that one on Gunbroker and wondered if that seller was related to Mr. Carrol's "Woodlawn Boys" everything about the sale reminded of his outfit.
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CptCurl View Post
Don't get me wrong. It's a nice gun, but it's not original at all.

There are several things about it that bother me:

The dome on the pin that captures the rebound spring is flattened. I don't think S&W would flatten this pin in a factory refinish, though I may be wrong. Have a look:


In the same image you can also see that nothing was done to restore the color case hardening of the trigger. The hammer is likewise. I would think a factory refinish would have attended to this.


Anyway, these are just my observations. I'm not trying to run the gun down. However, it brought a very impressive price of $4,050.00 plus shipping and transfer fees. That's up there!

Curl
Curl,

Very good objective observations of this TL.

All the stamps and characteristics support a righteous re-finish by the factory. Because it was refinished after the war however, we see post war protocols:

If refinished before WWII we'd see the rebound spring and hammer stud left domed, but polishing them flat is correct post war protocol for 1952.

Also the satin finish was the norm after the war, until ~ the mid-50's instead of the bright blue. Unless of course the owner had paid the premium for bright blue if that was even an option for a refinish.

The side plate logo was clearly restamped, hence the post 1935 vintage logo.
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom K View Post
I concur with the Captain. Looks nice at first glance, but when you start getting down to the details this is not a "top condition" gun. Another thing against it being a factory refinish - in 1952, wouldn't they have restamped it with the Marcas Registradas 4-line stamp?
According to my notes from Roy, the objectionable Marcas Registradas 4-line stamp issue came about in the early 1970s when Roy put a stop to it.
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:16 PM
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I saw this one on Gunbroker as well. I observe, but never purchase on Gunbroker. I noted the refinish in 1952 and thought that it would be interesting to see what this one might bring relative to a non-refinish. As in how much less. This brought more than similar guns not refinished. Glad I'm not into this one that deeply!

Capt Curl--excellent observations.

Hondo44--great response.
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Old 05-17-2018, 12:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondo44 View Post
According to my notes from Roy, the objectionable Marcas Registradas 4-line stamp issue came about in the early 1970s when Roy put a stop to it.
According to one of your recent posts, the 4-line stamp during a refinish started in 1948 and ended in the early 1970s.
http://smith-wessonforum.com/139399615-post24.html

This gun's trip to the factory would fall into that time frame. It's possible that all that was done in 1952 was the installation of the lanyard ring and subsequent restamp of the serial on the side of the frame. If they had done the refinish, wouldn't they have restamped the frame with the 4-line address? And properly recased the trigger and hammer?
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Old 05-17-2018, 02:33 AM
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Quote:
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According to one of your recent posts, the 4-line stamp during a refinish started in 1948 and ended in the early 1970s.
http://smith-wessonforum.com/139399615-post24.html

This gun's trip to the factory would fall into that time frame. It's possible that all that was done in 1952 was the installation of the lanyard ring and subsequent restamp of the serial on the side of the frame. If they had done the refinish, wouldn't they have restamped the frame with the 4-line address? And properly recased the trigger and hammer?
Tom,

I did state that based on info from Roy. However, in the year and a half since then, I've taken special note of when the 4 line actually was stamped.

There's a serious lack of examples on this forum or anywhere else that prove out that date span. Including two I own re-finished at the factory in the 1950s, and this TL. I have seen some done in the early 1970s however.

As usual with all things S&W, there seems to be little consistency, especially on this issue. So I have revised what I post now.
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Old 05-17-2018, 06:26 AM
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Given the choice I would rather have this TL: https://www.gunbroker.com/item/764428600

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Old 05-17-2018, 06:53 AM
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Given the choice I would rather have this TL: https://www.gunbroker.com/item/764428600

Curl
I would agree, and with that purchase, that particular GB buyer has spent approximately $25,000 on gun purchases thru GB in the last six weeks. Including several other high dollar Smith & Wessons. He obviously runs in different circles that I do.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:55 AM
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Given the choice I would rather have this TL: https://www.gunbroker.com/item/764428600

Curl
Curl,

That's EXACTLY the Triple Lock I Had in mind with regards to my post above, with regards to how much less the subject matter of this thread should have sold for relative to an unrefinished example. $3980 is less than $4050 plus this one is early with non medallion grips.

The good news is that had you purchased the refinished Triple Lock, the shipping was $35, and the other one cost $40 to ship, LOL!

Last edited by mrcvs; 05-17-2018 at 07:59 AM. Reason: Reference to shipping
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Old 05-17-2018, 05:50 PM
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Given the choice I would rather have this TL: https://www.gunbroker.com/item/764428600

Curl
People rather have shooters I guess.
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Old 05-17-2018, 08:41 PM
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People rather have shooters I guess.
Jim,

Can you please explain what you mean? In my opinion, due to the condition of both, neither are "shooters". Or, perhaps you mean the '52 refinish IS a shooter, as it will forever not be original, albeit refinished by Smith & Wesson. If you are a purist, then this would be the case. But, if a refinish and/or a shooter, it should bring a price more in line with being such. At this time, I believe a Smith & Wesson refinish is bringing about 85% that of original, although I cannot bring myself to pay that. To put this all in perspective, only two years ago I paid in the mid 4's for a Triple Lock Target Model, in similar condition to the subject matter of this thread, or nearly so. Which one would you rather have? Technically, the subject matter of this thread is a refinish, and my Target Model is not, so, in my humble opinion, the subject matter of this thread is inherently less desirable than a 10% condition Triple Lock, as the 10% condition one is not altered from original. For your viewing pleasure is another Target Model I own with non medallion grips with a "been there, done that" look that produces an adrenaline rush every time I pull this out of the safe.
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Triple Lock just sold.-20160918_073402-jpg   Triple Lock just sold.-20160918_073426-jpg  
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Old 05-17-2018, 08:43 PM
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Since my post, above, could be possibly construed as being rather confusing, here's the Target Model Triple Lock I paid in the mid 4's for two years ago, as unrefinished.
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Triple Lock just sold.-20161128_112106-jpg   Triple Lock just sold.-20161128_111950-jpg   Triple Lock just sold.-20161128_111832-jpg   Triple Lock just sold.-20161128_111923-jpg  

Last edited by mrcvs; 05-17-2018 at 08:47 PM. Reason: To add photographs
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Old 05-17-2018, 09:21 PM
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Just to add an apples to oranges comparison, this RM went back to the factory in 6-50 for a refinish (I think) and I gave about $4kish in trade a year ago for it. I'd take the RM over the originally posted TL any day.




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Old 05-17-2018, 09:50 PM
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I think the quality photography probably helped the price. Looks like they did a nice job selling it. Like the other posters I liked the other TL that sold on gunbroker as well.
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Old 05-17-2018, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
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I did see that one on Gunbroker and wondered if that seller was related to Mr. Carrol's "Woodlawn Boys" everything about the sale reminded of his outfit.
There is definitely some connection between Woodlawn and Birmingham. If you right mouse one of the high-def pictures and choose open in another tab, the pictures download from the "Woodlawn" account on PhotoBucket.

I am expecting delivery tomorrow from a gun I just purchased from Birmingham with Woodlawn pictures. Both businesses are located on the same street in Trussville, Alabama.
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Old 05-17-2018, 10:59 PM
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I may be able to shed some light on the situation:










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Old 05-18-2018, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcvs View Post
Jim,

Can you please explain what you mean? In my opinion, due to the condition of both, neither are "shooters". Or, perhaps you mean the '52 refinish IS a shooter, as it will forever not be original, albeit refinished by Smith & Wesson. If you are a purist, then this would be the case. But, if a refinish and/or a shooter, it should bring a price more in line with being such. At this time, I believe a Smith & Wesson refinish is bringing about 85% that of original, although I cannot bring myself to pay that. To put this all in perspective, only two years ago I paid in the mid 4's for a Triple Lock Target Model, in similar condition to the subject matter of this thread, or nearly so. Which one would you rather have? Technically, the subject matter of this thread is a refinish, and my Target Model is not, so, in my humble opinion, the subject matter of this thread is inherently less desirable than a 10% condition Triple Lock, as the 10% condition one is not altered from original. For your viewing pleasure is another Target Model I own with non medallion grips with a "been there, done that" look that produces an adrenaline rush every time I pull this out of the safe.
Yes, I will. 'Shooters' come in all levels of condition and originality. The TL of this thread is what I would call a "high end shooter/collectible", i.e., just enough wear or change from original to shoot w/o concern and lust little enough to still be collectible to some.

The un-refinished hammer and trigger showing patina, lack of good colors, plus factory re-finish, albeit satin instead of bright blue are what make it a crossover or "high end shooter/collectible" IMHO.

Shooters come in myriad levels; from abused, modified, non-factory re-finished, to all original condition, but only 50% original finish, etc., i.e., clearly not collectible, all the way up to a high level shooter.

So based on that, I feel like most that the two winning bids on Gunbroker for the two TLs were at least reversed and maybe anomalies.

However, and here's my point:

I have found several TLs for sale for friends. Some are rejected because they're "too nice" or "not nice enough". Although my friends could easily afford the "too nice" TLs, they wanted something not so nice; they want to be able to shoot it, handle, it, and maybe carry it "w/o guilt or responsibility for depreciating it".

So they not only prefer, but might even pay more for a "high end shooter/collectible"!

Oh life is just so complicated for us gun nuts, isn't it?

NOTE: I recognize that the line between "Shooter" and "Collectible" moves because it is relative to the rarity of the model! In other words: TLs, Reg Mags, and K32s are still collectible in lower condition levels than many other models with higher production volumes.
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Old 05-18-2018, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
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I have found several TLs for sale for friends. Some are rejected because they're "too nice" or "not nice enough". Although my friends could easily afford the "too nice" TLs, they wanted something not so nice; they want to be able to shoot it, handle, it, and maybe carry it "w/o guilt or responsibility for depreciating it".
Jim, will you be my friend? LOL!

Okay, I said that because I thought it was amusing, but maybe I only amused myself. In all seriousness, if you come across a Triple Lock with condition that is reasonably priced for what it is, that one of your friends pass on in favour of on with less condition that they wish to pay more for, send me a PM; I might be interested! I have two or three "shooter" Triple Locks, so I don't need to pay more for a "shooter". I pay according to condition--the better it is, the deeper I dig.

I meant to mention that the subject matter of this thread, being refinished by Smith & Wesson, is generally worth about 85% of one in similar condition but not refinished by Smith & Wesson. According to others; I just can't bring myself to pay this for a refinish. Unfortunately, the subject matter of this thread brought 110% of an original, non refinished Triple Lock. And the case colouring doesn't even approach that of an original.
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Old 05-18-2018, 07:12 AM
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I think the quality photography probably helped the price. Looks like they did a nice job selling it. Like the other posters I liked the other TL that sold on gunbroker as well.
The outstanding quality of the photographs definitely contributed to the seller realizing such a high price.
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Old 05-18-2018, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by HOUSTON RICK View Post
Somebody with the money wanted it.
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Originally Posted by raljr1 View Post
I would agree, and with that purchase, that particular GB buyer has spent approximately $25,000 on gun purchases thru GB in the last six weeks. Including several other high dollar Smith & Wessons. He obviously runs in different circles that I do.
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People rather have shooters I guess.
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. . .

NOTE: I recognize that the line between "Shooter" and "Collectible" moves because it is relative to the rarity of the model! In other words: TLs, Reg Mags, and K32s are still collectible in lower condition levels than many other models with higher production volumes.

In the end, the size of the pocketbook, coupled with rarity, are the two major factors bearing on location of the line between a collectible and a shooter! However, assuming this purchaser is as well-heeled as raljr1 seems to think, I doubt the revolver will see much, if any, range time. My guess would be it's a place-holder in his collection, to be upgraded when a better TL comes along.

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Old 05-18-2018, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by SPEEDGUNNER View Post
The outstanding quality of the photographs definitely contributed to the seller realizing such a high price.
I think that, on Gunbroker, there is a direct relationship between the quality of the photographs and the sale price. The quality is similar to Woodlawn Boys (David Carroll) also located in Trussville, so there has to be a connection. In the end, you have the gun, not the photographs.

I wonder if one or more bidders jumped to the high quality photographs and quickly forgot this was a refinish?
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Old 05-18-2018, 08:37 AM
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This year a beautiful Triple Lock Target sold @ auction (RIA) for over $14000. In box, probably near 99%. Everything is relative in the value world. Surprisingly the TL was expected to garner a higher price at the auction.
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Old 05-18-2018, 10:01 AM
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Ok, back to some serious collector education questions. This is not criticism. I only want to learn more about "reading the tea leaves."

First the butt swivel:

This is an unusual feature for a .44 TL. To me, this one looks irregular. Let's have a look to compare.






On top is the gun we are studying. Below it is a photo of the grip frame of my .455 TL. My gun bears serial number 12787 and letters as a ".44 Hand Ejector First Model (Triple-Lock), caliber .455 Eley." It shipped to Shapleigh Hardware on 29 Dec 1917 and letters with the butt swivel, so here we see factory work.

Does the swivel on the gun we are discussing appear to be factory work? I think probably not. Here's why.

* It appears to be blued. A normal butt swivel from the factory is color case hardened. The butt swivel on my .455 is color case hardened, though my photo is so poor it's hard to see. Every factory butt swivel I've ever seen has been color case hardened.

* The mounting hole is drilled through the original serial number, and an alternate serial number is stamped on the left side of the grip frame. The alternate serial number is misaligned, and the "1" looks to be larger font than the rest of the numbers.

* The mounting hole is located in a different position to the rear of the "factory" location.

* The retaining pin is all clobbered up.

Consider these possibilities of factory installation.

* If it was ordered with a swivel, the factory may have pulled aside a frame in current production and proceeded with installation of the swivel. In that event the original butt serial number would not be drilled. The butt serial number would be offset to accommodate the swivel, like on my .455:





* On the other hand, it's possible the gun was ordered with a swivel, and a completed gun was taken out of inventory and sent to the shop for installation of the swivel. In this event, would the shop drill through the existing number and leave it like that, or would the original number be removed and an alternate number be stamped on the left side of the frame? This I don't know. Perhaps somebody can help.

* Likewise, it is possible the gun was sent back for a swivel after its original purchase. What procedure would that entail? Would they drill right through the original number, or would it be removed for a neater job? What kind of a re-work stamp would be applied?

The serial number stamped on the left side of the grip frame is all higglety-pigglety. Wouldn't the factory do a better job? I don't know, but maybe somebody has insight on this.

How did the swivel get blued? I don't think the factory did it.

Why is the swivel in a different location? I know nothing about manufacturing techniques, but I am confident that the factory installs swivels in the same location every time. They use a template or a jig of some sort. This swivel is not in its correct location.

How did the swivel retaining pin get clobbered up? Surely the factory didn't do this ham-fisted work.

A letter would tell us if this revolver was special-ordered with the butt swivel, but we don't have that information.



Next the satin blue:

It's safe to say this revolver was originally finished bright blue, and I doubt anybody has a .44 HE Triple Lock with original satin blue finish. In February 1952 the factory was capable of doing a bright blue finish. Perhaps the standard was satin. That doesn't mean to me that the factory would receive a TL for refinish at that time and just decide to do it in satin. I would think they would do it in bright blue. Also, I really can't imagine the factory having this refinish job and ignoring the deplorable finish condition of the hammer and trigger. They certainly would have re-done the colors on those parts. Perhaps they would have put proper colors on the butt swivel too. So I'm just not convinced on the satin blue argument presented in earlier posts.



The various re-work stamps:

There is a star on the butt. Why?

There is a diamond on the left grip frame. Why?

There is a diamond on the barrel. Why?

There is the date stamp "2.52" on the left grip frame. Why? This stamp is all askew and sloppy. Is that typical of a factory stamp? I don't know, but perhaps somebody can give insight.

It's interesting to take note of what stamps are not present. There is no rectangle with R-S. There is no diamond with the letter B or S. This may be explained by what is said in SCSW 4th, on page 24: "Usage of this marking is believed to have followed the star on the butt."

So if we accept that a factory refinish in Feb. 1952 would be marked with a star on the butt and the date stamp on the left grip frame, what the heck do the two diamonds mean? We don't know, but they are there for a reason.



Conclusion:

In the end, and speaking only for myself, I am skeptical that this is a factory refinish at all. I'm skeptical the factory would polish the rebound spring retaining pin flat, even in 1952. I don't believe the butt swivel is factory work. It's a nice TL, but these are the impressions it gives me.

I say these things as though I am an authority, and I'm not. I have learned a tremendous amount from the people on this forum. Please give me your thoughts of where I am right and where I am wrong. We can all learn.

Curl
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Old 05-18-2018, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by CptCurl View Post
Conclusion:

In the end, and speaking only for myself, I am skeptical that this is a factory refinish at all. I'm skeptical the factory would polish the rebound spring retaining pin flat, even in 1952...

Curl
Actually, I think it was quite common for the Factory to polish the rebound pin flat for guns refinished in the 1950s. I own a handful of factory refinished pre-war guns and all of them have the rebound pin polished flush. After the war, that was how S&W polished the guns. I think it would be rare to find a factory refinished pre-war gun that still had a rounded rebound pin. Since the hammer stud is "below grade" it stayed mostly round in the refinish.

My observations and $0.06 (still not enough to buy a cup of lemonade...)
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Old 05-18-2018, 10:35 AM
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Richard,

Thanks for that information. It's good to learn.

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Old 05-18-2018, 01:30 PM
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Curl,

I think your points are most valid. The huge assumption is that everything not right with this Triple Lock can be attributed to that which was done at the factory in February of 1952, and, based on what you have pointed out, only some or none of what differs from the norm on this firearm might have been done in February of 1952 and this very well might be a well executed refinish far from Springfield, Massachusetts.

.455 Webley Triple Lock revolvers contained a lanyard. Few, if any, in .44 Special manufactured for domestic use contained said lanyard. I do not know for sure, but, if I had to guess, I would think later application of a lanyard through the serial number would be suspect on its own, and this hypothesis is strenthened by the later application of a questionable serial number.
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Old 05-18-2018, 02:43 PM
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As Roy often says (I paraphrase), "they were running a business not keeping things neat for future collectors to understand."
Conjecture and guessing does nothing but add confusion. All events took place from 60 to 100 years ago, who could know?
Triple Lock Target #902


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Old 05-18-2018, 03:04 PM
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There are some people to whom the price of that TL is not even pocket change, but maybe more like pocket lint. He saw it, liked it, and bought it.
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Old 05-18-2018, 05:18 PM
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".455 Webley Triple Lock revolvers contained a lanyard. Few, if any, in .44 Special manufactured for domestic use contained said lanyard. I do not know for sure, but, if I had to guess, I would think later application of a lanyard through the serial number would be suspect on its own, and this hypothesis is strenthened by the later application of a questionable serial number."


I have seen a number of 2nd Model .44 Specials that were built on surplus 1917 frames. My 5" 2nd Model has a lanyard.


If the factory received an order for a revolver equipped with a lanyard loop and that model revolver was not currently in a production run, S&W would take a completed handgun, install a lanyard loop through the serial number and then re-stamp the SN on the side of the grip frame, under the grips.
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Old 05-18-2018, 05:32 PM
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I based my statement purely on the fact that few Triple Lock revolvers, other than those made for the British government, contain lanyards and the new serial number stamped contains a very odd looking '1'.
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Old 05-18-2018, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by CptCurl View Post
I know nothing about the seller or buyer, but I was watching a .44 Triple Lock go to sale on GB this Monday. https://www.gunbroker.com/item/768448052

I must say it seemed to have brought a strong price. Perhaps the market is climbing north. Comments?

Curl
I got this unrefinished in very good to excellent condition for about $3200 in January 2018


$4000 for a refinished TL does seem high

However, for those of us who will not be getting Registered Magnums, the TL is an excellent "compromise"
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Old 05-18-2018, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by bushmaster1313 View Post
I got this unrefinished in very good to excellent condition for about $3200 in January 2018


$4000 for a refinished TL does seem high

However, for those of us who will not be getting Registered Magnums, the TL is an excellent "compromise"
Bushmaster1313,

I am so glad you responded!

I recall your thread about your Triple Lock purchased earlier this year. What was interesting about your thread was that the photographs posted for the Gunbroker advertisement clearly did not show the imperfections that were indeed present and obvious in your photographs. I suggested that your Triple Lock was misrepresented; you stated you actually preferred it in its present state as you could now not worry about shooting it.

I was hoping you would respond as it supports the claim that some will pay more for revolvers in slightly lesser condition for these very reasons.

Proof that you are not alone; with all due respect.

At the time, I thought yours was rather high for what it is. I now maybe don't think so as I would much rather spend $3200 for yours than over $4000 for the one refinished in 1952. As refinished, I wouldn't want to be into that one for anywhere near what yours sold for...so, further proof yours is the better of the two, in my opinion.

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Old 05-18-2018, 09:27 PM
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I bid on that second TL on gunbroker. It left me at $509. I wouldn't even bid on the 1952 refinish.

I would love a shooter. To have the prettiest girl in town and never take her dancing is a SIN. Yes, I said it, a SIN. Only the devil chains his lady in the vault.


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Old 05-18-2018, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by CptCurl View Post

First the butt swivel:


* It appears to be blued. A normal butt swivel from the factory is color case hardened. The butt swivel on my .455 is color case hardened, though my photo is so poor it's hard to see. Every factory butt swivel I've ever seen has been color case hardened.

* The mounting hole is drilled through the original serial number, and an alternate serial number is stamped on the left side of the grip frame. The alternate serial number is misaligned, and the "1" looks to be larger font than the rest of the numbers.

* The mounting hole is located in a different position to the rear of the "factory" location.

* The retaining pin is all clobbered up.

Consider these possibilities of factory installation.

* If it was ordered with a swivel, the factory may have pulled aside a frame in current production and proceeded with installation of the swivel. In that event the original butt serial number would not be drilled. The butt serial number would be offset to accommodate the swivel, like on my .455:


* On the other hand, it's possible the gun was ordered with a swivel, and a completed gun was taken out of inventory and sent to the shop for installation of the swivel. In this event, would the shop drill through the existing number and leave it like that, or would the original number be removed and an alternate number be stamped on the left side of the frame? This I don't know. Perhaps somebody can help.

* Likewise, it is possible the gun was sent back for a swivel after its original purchase. What procedure would that entail? Would they drill right through the original number, or would it be removed for a neater job? What kind of a re-work stamp would be applied?

The serial number stamped on the left side of the grip frame is all higglety-pigglety. Wouldn't the factory do a better job? I don't know, but maybe somebody has insight on this.

How did the swivel get blued? I don't think the factory did it.

Why is the swivel in a different location? I know nothing about manufacturing techniques, but I am confident that the factory installs swivels in the same location every time. They use a template or a jig of some sort. This swivel is not in its correct location.

How did the swivel retaining pin get clobbered up? Surely the factory didn't do this ham-fisted work.

A letter would tell us if this revolver was special-ordered with the butt swivel, but we don't have that information.

Curl

You and Muley Gil have it right.

The Pre war serial # is centered on the butt, or offset if produced with a lanyard swivel (factory installed swivels after initial production or sent back for a swivel are drilled thru the centered # which is re-stamped on left side grip frame), and reads with barrel to the right including I frame serial numbers on the forestrap. After WW II the serial # is offset to the rear and reads with barrel to the left (except for serial numbers on the forestrap thru 1957). Factory installed swivels are drilled with a jig and always 1/10” forward of center.

When an order came thru for a revolver with a lanyard swivel and there were no assembled revolvers of the configuration as ordered in inventory, a revolver(s) that matched the order was pulled, drilled thru the serial and swivel installed. Serial # re-stamped on grip frame.

Factory installed swivels after initial production on new guns in inventory will not always 'letter' especially if 'thrown in' for free.

Color case hardened swivels usually had few colors and were eventually parkerized for WWII sales. Then blued for commercial guns.

Therefore blued swivels on earlier guns are either replacements for removed originals, non-factory installed, or original swivels re-finished if and when the gun was.
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Old 05-18-2018, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mrcvs View Post
I based my statement purely on the fact that few Triple Lock revolvers, other than those made for the British government, contain lanyards and the new serial number stamped contains a very odd looking '1'.
S&W factory workers weren't real fussy with stamping on the side of the grip frame where it didn't show, or it's done after market. As long as it matches the # on barrel, cyl, etc.
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Old 05-19-2018, 09:15 AM
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Default Absolute zaniness/insanity of Gunbroker

To put this all in perspective, here is a Triple Lock I purchased in March at a brick & mortar auction. Also, a telephone bid or an internet bid could have worked, plus a (not so thick) wallet. $1536.40! Okay, so it's in .455 Webley, but not altered. If you don't like that one, I purchased a Triple Lock in October 2017 and paid around $1700 for it, in a private sale. Nearly as nice as the one that is the subject matter of this thread, but not refinished. It is pictured after the single photograph of the first .455 Webley. I truly think those bidding on Gunbroker get an adrenaline rush and they don't really always think "how much does this all cost and is it really worth it?" I am fully aware that .455 Webley is not as desirable as .44 Special, but the spread is not nearly this much.
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Old 05-19-2018, 12:04 PM
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Paid appreciably less than that for my TL Target last year.

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Old 05-19-2018, 12:12 PM
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Paid appreciably less than that for my TL Target last year.
Less than the $1536 I mentioned or the $4050 of the subject matter of this thread? Congratulations regardless, but, if the former, a round of applause, too!

Photographs?
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Old 05-19-2018, 12:40 PM
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Less than the $1536 I mentioned or the $4050 of the subject matter of this thread? Congratulations regardless, but, if the former, a round of applause, too!

Photographs?
Less than the original auction quoted. I did pick up a 5" last year for right at 1K.
Ropers didn't come on the Target or it would have been a steal.

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