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S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 All 5-Screw & Vintage 4-Screw SWING-OUT Cylinder REVOLVERS, and the 35 Autos and 32 Autos


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Old 03-24-2020, 01:24 AM
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Default Model 45/pre 45 rarity perplexing

We all here know the model 45 series is a pretty rare and valuable revolver.
I find it strange that for decades the model 10 series guns were the most common police revolver around, and one would of expected a companion .22 training gun to be popular but wasn’t.
Anyone have any ideas why? Lack of marketing by the factory?
Or what.
Will likely never have one as from my perspective simply too costly, unless I stumbled into an amazing deal of some sort.
Perhaps this is a model worthy of a short “classic series”
Production run?
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Old 03-24-2020, 06:58 AM
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This just an uneducated guess . Part of it may be that the cost of the M&P in .22 caliber reduced the profit margins for S&W. Also lots of cheaper choices for .22 plinkers for general market .

The other part is that training is expensive. Hourly costs incured by Officers and Instructors, ammunition costs, range construction, outfitting and maintenance can add up.

Then also training time away from duty can run departments short on shifts.

It seems like since TR first mandated revolver practice for NYPD ,LE Administrators have viewed sidearm training as a necessary evil. Of course not realizing always that lack of proper training increases the government entity's, the department's, and those same administration's liability greatly.

If S&W ever does decide to resurrect the Model 45 I hope it occures after the funeral of the lock.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:48 AM
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Back then, many departments “trained” with 38 wadcutters. Hardly enough recoil in a Model 10 to worry about going to a 22.

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Old 03-24-2020, 12:09 PM
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Many departments even loaded their own.

Last edited by Jim Watson; 03-24-2020 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:08 PM
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Many departments even loaded their own.

When I joined the Dept. in 1972, there was a Star loader in the basement set up for .38 caliber. It hadn't been used in quite some time, so I got permission to take it home and use it for my own loading. I cleaned it up and it worked great.
I even got a supply of lubed cast wadcutters and some primers to boot.

It was eventually sold by the Dept. to a gun shop I worked at and loaded for.
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:29 PM
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Like StrawHat, I do not believe there is enough of a reason to use 22LR among trained offers over a 38 special. Recoil can not possibly be an issue


To me the real surprise is that an agency would want something like the Model 45

It can not possibly be a practical Cost Savings in 1950s/1960s ammunition prices

How many rounds of .22 need to be fired just for an Agency to get to a break even point to cover the cost of the new firearms?

Then you have two sets of firearms to be inventoried.

Who stores the Model 45s after officers are issued their duty sidearms?
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:38 PM
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I can attest to their accuracy. My buddy took mine out and at 25 yards put near all 10 shots in the 10 ring. I have not fired it yet though. I am waiting for it to warm up and melt the snow. Big Larry
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:43 PM
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SCS&W "Previously produced for the post office, coast guard and other government agencies", they were not concerned with breakeven. Still I think that it would have been a great kit gun.
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Old 03-24-2020, 05:31 PM
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The Boston PD apparently had some.

Seems the majority of them went to the Post Office and were later destroyed. A fairly small number was sold on the commercial market, and there wasn't much of an effort by S&W (if any) made to promote and sell them, but I could only guess why not.

The only one I have seen is the one I own.

For those who may not know what a Model 45 is, it's simply a .22 M&P. Or maybe a K22 without target sights.

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Old 03-24-2020, 06:21 PM
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I have a 1935 manufactured Colt Official Police in .22 caliber and a 6" barrel. It is a lot of fun to shoot although you can definitely feel the weight from only having the standard weight barrel and cylinder reamed to .22 dimensions. It would be interesting to see how many of that model that Colt's sold compared to their .38 version. Both S&W and Colt's had target grade/adjustable sight .22 revolvers in their lineups from the 1930's onward but they didn't really market them as "trainers" until around the time that the .38 Combat Masterpiece became available and a lot of officers switched from the old M&P's to that model. Then the .22 Combat Masterpiece made a lot of sense.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:08 PM
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Isn't that why they made the Mod 18? 4" K Frame .22RF, but with adjustable sights.
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Old 03-24-2020, 10:31 PM
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Until into the 60s not every Tom Dick and Harry had a 22 handgun that cost about a weeks pay for most people. Most who had the money were into bullseye target and would want adj sights.
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Old 03-24-2020, 11:10 PM
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They are a nicely made .22 a and easy to carry. Not a 'target' gun per se, but, you do your part and they will be good for you.


enjoy,
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Old 03-25-2020, 02:04 PM
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Every Smith that looks like a Model 10 that I see, I eyeball hoping for it to be a M-45. I've never seen nor handled one in the 25yrs here in Phoenix.
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Old 03-25-2020, 02:14 PM
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I bought mine years ago, an acquaintance of mine I knew from gun shop meetings had one. This guy was a perfectionist and every firearm he bought had to be perfect. He complained that he picked up a M-45 he wasn't happy with. It was NITB but he said it was one of the last ones made and was manufactured from left over parts. I took it off his hands for $450.00.
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Old 03-25-2020, 02:16 PM
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There are many postings about them here, but there's not a great deal of hard historical information about them. Somewhat like the M&Ps in .32 S&W Long. I have one of those also, again the only one I have ever run across. Allegedly, most of those were exported, but no one seems to know where.

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Old 03-29-2020, 12:13 AM
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Somewhat like the M&Ps in .32 S&W Long. I have one of those also, again the only one I have ever run across. Allegedly, most of those were exported, but no one seems to know where.
I thought most 32 M&Ps had gone to Mexico. Mexico has laws limiting calibers for public use. They cannot have "military" calibers, so 32s, 38s,are common. My last trip there on business I thought to look around for one...not an easy task and I never even tried. I do want one, and like DWalt, the next one I see will be the first.

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Old 03-29-2020, 12:48 PM
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If there was ever a gun that needed adjustable sights its a .22, although neat from a collecting standpoint I don't see any use for it that a model 18 wouldn't serve better. I have one but only because the guy selling it knew it was different and he had never seen one before but had not researched it before selling.
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Old 03-29-2020, 01:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrafsr View Post
When I joined the Dept. in 1972, there was a Star loader in the basement set up for .38 caliber. It hadn't been used in quite some time, so I got permission to take it home and use it for my own loading. I cleaned it up and it worked great.
I even got a supply of lubed cast wadcutters and some primers to boot.

It was eventually sold by the Dept. to a gun shop I worked at and loaded for.

Bill, our PD had one of those Star machines and our Auxiliaries would cast wadcutters and load up the practice ammo. We had a 55 gallon drum perpetually filled with these reloads. We used to scoop them out with a coffee can and hit the range. The loads were so weak you could actually see the bullet travel down range. We used to qualify monthly and could practice to your heart’s content. Who needs 22’s when you have a barrel full of 38 wadcutters?


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Old 03-29-2020, 02:30 PM
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Way back in my youth in my old Southern Ohio home town, the local Sheriff had trusties in the county jail loading .38 Special wadcutters for practice and training with a Star machine. I doubt the use of trusty labor for things like that would be allowed today. I guess if I were a trusty, I would enjoy that duty.
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Old 03-29-2020, 04:05 PM
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You all make valid points. It still seems funny the feds found the concept to be valid but few others. I agree the target grade 17/18 make more sense ( my 17-2 is my primary rimfire bullseye gun).
If I ever trip over a 45 at a decent price I will pick it up not holding my breath however. I have never 3ven seen one in person!
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Old 03-29-2020, 09:46 PM
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Imagine the disappointment my children are going to have when they realize these neerdowell Model 45's didn't come with adjustable sights. Oh, the humanity! I guess they will be relegated to the lower echelon of goodies left to them by dad.

enjoy anyway,
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Old 03-29-2020, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
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We all here know the model 45 series is a pretty rare and valuable revolver.
I find it strange that for decades the model 10 series guns were the most common police revolver around, and one would of expected a companion .22 training gun to be popular but wasn’t.
Anyone have any ideas why? Lack of marketing by the factory?
Or what.
Well, since you asked...
Back in those days, men were men and women need not apply. There was no need for a minor caliber for "training" because if a recruit couldn't "take it" in training, they didn't expect he'd make it as a cop.
The Post Office was primarily training Mail Clerks for money runs, not cops. As for Boston.... democrats. Can't say more than that.
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:52 AM
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Well, since you asked...
Back in those days, men were men and women need not apply. There was no need for a minor caliber for "training" because if a recruit couldn't "take it" in training, they didn't expect he'd make it as a cop.
The Post Office was primarily training Mail Clerks for money runs, not cops. As for Boston.... democrats. Can't say more than that.
Well you know someone had to say it......
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Old 03-30-2020, 10:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Brown View Post
If there was ever a gun that needed adjustable sights its a .22, although neat from a collecting standpoint I don't see any use for it that a model 18 wouldn't serve better. I have one but only because the guy selling it knew it was different and he had never seen one before but had not researched it before selling.
Reading through this whole thread, I had come to about the same conclusions as Mr Brown... the Model 45 to me is a niche gun that lacks a niche (except as a collector’s piece.) the 22 rimfire revolver will probably digest a variety of loads that will make adjustable sights more necessary than for “service” revolvers like the Model 10, and as others have stated, training for “service” (in this case, mainly for law enforcement) brought the expectation of a certain minimum of strength and self control, which would certainly enable the trainee to be able to handle that most ubiquitous of law enforcement rounds, the 38 Special.

Would I like to have a set of three M&Ps, one each in 38, 32, and 22, or even with a fourth in 32-20? I’d be lying if I said no. But would they be a practical addition to my shooting battery. Not in the least. Although they could be called upon to carry and shoot in yeoman fashion, I’d be much more likely to use one of the Masterpiece series in the same caliber. Back in the ‘50s when purchasing a revolver, were I to consider the difference in price between the M&P and its Master equivalent, I would likely have saved up the required amount and upgraded to the gun with adjustable sights, especially for anything other than my actual duty gun. JMHO, YMMV.

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Old 04-01-2020, 12:34 PM
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According to the book, this serial number is just over the one mentioned in the book for a pre M45 M&P 22. # C 407568. It is not model marked and was shipped 6-1958. It also has PC stocks numbered to the gun. Most I have seen have the standard magnas. No PO or PD markings. Eventually, I will letter it.
Anyone have any info on it? The bbl. and cyl. are not numbered. Thanks, Big Larry

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Old 04-01-2020, 01:59 PM
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Mine is C429xxx, 4", it has original PC grips. No markings other than standard. My cylinder is not serial numbered. I don't believe the barrel is either, but I would have to look to be sure. I am fairly certain mine was one of those PO overruns sold by H. H. Harris. I have a 1960 factory letter that doesn't say much about anything else, and does not even provide a shipping date.

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Old 04-01-2020, 10:02 PM
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According to the book, this serial number is just over the one mentioned in the book for a pre M45 M&P 22. # C 407568. It is not model marked and was shipped 6-1958. It also has PC stocks numbered to the gun. Most I have seen have the standard magnas. No PO or PD markings. Eventually, I will letter it.
Anyone have any info on it? The bbl. and cyl. are not numbered. Thanks, Big Larry

The barrel and cylinder won't be numbered as your gun is a four screw model and that wasn't done on them.

I own one gun with standard magnas.
It is a non model marked four screw gun.
All of the ones I have seen and examined have the modified magnas. All of them.

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Old 04-02-2020, 09:53 AM
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This just an uneducated guess . Part of it may be that the cost of the M&P in .22 caliber reduced the profit margins for S&W. Also lots of cheaper choices for .22 plinkers for general market .

The other part is that training is expensive. Hourly costs incured by Officers and Instructors, ammunition costs, range construction, outfitting and maintenance can add up.

Then also training time away from duty can run departments short on shifts.

It seems like since TR first mandated revolver practice for NYPD ,LE Administrators have viewed sidearm training as a necessary evil. Of course not realizing always that lack of proper training increases the government entity's, the department's, and those same administration's liability greatly.

If S&W ever does decide to resurrect the Model 45 I hope it occures after the funeral of the lock.
Until the US Supreme Court decision in Garcia v San Antonio (1985), local and state governments were generally thought to be exempt from having to pay overtime or even comp time. Some agencies had agreed to do one or the other in union contracts but most said "thank you for showing up for training/qualification, we appreciate your dedication but you won't get paid a nickel more.". The Model 45 was long gone by 1985. The rest of the costs are correct. until, you factor in how cheap practice 22 compared to even reloaded 38 in those days was.

Some officers looked at their sidearm like a carpenter does a hammer and did the absolute minimum. Even today that attitude prevails, the more dedicated ones supplement dept. minimum with skills acquired on their own time.
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Old 04-02-2020, 03:52 PM
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This just an uneducated guess . Part of it may be that the cost of the M&P in .22 caliber reduced the profit margins for S&W. Also lots of cheaper choices for .22 plinkers for general market .

The other part is that training is expensive. Hourly costs incured by Officers and Instructors, ammunition costs, range construction, outfitting and maintenance can add up.

Then also training time away from duty can run departments short on shifts.

It seems like since TR first mandated revolver practice for NYPD ,LE Administrators have viewed sidearm training as a necessary evil. Of course not realizing always that lack of proper training increases the government entity's, the department's, and those same administration's liability greatly.

If S&W ever does decide to resurrect the Model 45 I hope it occures after the funeral of the lock.
I agree with all you have said so, what's your point here? Your arguments make good sence and why not the model 45?
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Old 04-02-2020, 05:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdGreen View Post
The barrel and cylinder won't be numbered as your gun is a four screw model and that wasn't done on them.

I own one gun with standard magnas.
It is a non model marked four screw gun.
All of the ones I have seen and examined have the modified magnas. All of them.

bdGreen
I have a 4 screw pre M14 and the cylinder and bbl. are numbered to the gun. Big Larry
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