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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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  #51  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:29 PM
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numbs match on all parts
it chambers a factory & reload with.06ish hs
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  #52  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:33 PM
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Good thread. I hope the OP sends for a letter. I hope it turns out to be an original..........
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  #53  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:34 PM
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bbl, frame and wheel match, font looks right .
yes that is a 10.51 which makes sense, he said he bought it around '60 .
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Old 07-26-2020, 08:35 PM
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Now we're making some progress. Numbers may match but I'm pretty sure the diamond stamp on the barrel means it is a replacement. Likely new barrel, new cylinder, a refinish and possibly more in 1951. The Historical Foundation may have copies of the service work orders.

Any remnants of other stamps on the bottom of the butt or elsewhere that might indicate Canadian ownership?

Jeff
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Last edited by 22hipower; 07-26-2020 at 08:41 PM.
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  #55  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by 4WHLDRFTN View Post
numbs match on all parts
it chambers a factory & reload with.06ish hs
What was the number stamped on the upper forward part of the left side grip frame? (Assuming it possibly is a number.)

Were there any symbols stamped anywhere on the butt, yoke, or cylinder?

Yup barrel has the diamond indicating factory rework/possible replacement.

I too am leaning towards a later factory caliber conversion and refinish. The latest pic of the cylinder confirms my feeling that it is a later number font for the serial number and not the older font making it most likely a factory replacement.

Unfortunately the barrel's serial number pic just isn't clear enough for me to determine if it is an old number font or later style.

We need a good clear pic of the barrel's serial number to try to determine if it may be a later factory replacement as well due to the diamond stamp on it.
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  #56  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:49 PM
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the bbl and wheel fonts are the same
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  #57  
Old 07-26-2020, 08:51 PM
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Were there any symbols stamped anywhere on the butt, yoke, or cylinder?
pennant and accep stamp that is all
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  #58  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:01 PM
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Now we're making some progress. Numbers may match but I'm pretty sure the diamond stamp on the barrel means it is a replacement. Likely new barrel, new cylinder, a refinish and possibly more in 1951. The Historical Foundation may have copies of the service work orders.

Any remnants of other stamps on the bottom of the butt or elsewhere that might indicate Canadian ownership?

Jeff
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would they stamp the frame if the cal. was changed when is was rebuilt ?
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  #59  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:01 PM
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the bbl and wheel fonts are the same
If the barrel and cylinder s/n fonts are both the same, and of the later style, then I would definitely be leaning towards them both being a later factory replacement........possibly/most likely the refinish happened then as well.

I look at it this way, if you are going to have a caliber converted refinished example it doesn't hurt the value nearly as much to have it be a factory rework job versus being reworked by some unnamed individual.

I think we know most of what happened here but having a Factory letter and a SWHF letter would more exact as to when, who, and original configuration when it shipped as well as any later factory rework performed.
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Old 07-26-2020, 09:05 PM
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If the barrel and cylinder s/n fonts are both the same, and of the later style, then I would definitely be leaning towards them both being a later factory replacement........possibly/most likely the refinish happened then as well.

I look at it this way, if you are going to have a caliber converted refinished example it doesn't hurt the value nearly as much to have it be a factory rework job versus being reworked by some unnamed individual.

I think we know most of what happened here but having a Factory letter and a SWHF letter would more exact as to when, who, and original configuration when it shipped as well as any later factory rework performed.
yes, def a factory rebuild and not terwillegered.. now down to if it left the factory as a 45lc
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Old 07-26-2020, 09:15 PM
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yes, def a factory rebuild and not terwillegered.. now down to if it left the factory as a 45lc
While I could see someone possibly wanting to replace a worn barrel with a new barrel as part of a factory rework order I don't see any reason why S&W would change out the whole cylinder if it was already in .45Colt.

My gut feeling is new barrel, and new cylinder. (If both s/n fonts are truly the same and a later style.) And then a refinish. Possibly some other issues corrected with regards to the action while it was there just to bring it completely back into spec.

Could S&W simply have shaved a few thousandths off the back of the cylinder and then restamped the same serial number on it.........sure. But they still would have had to ream the .455 chambers out to accept .45Colt and it most likely it would have been easier and cheaper to replace the whole cylinder with a new .45Colt version. And it would be a new cylinder.

Only way to be sure of anything is to get it papered.

A very interesting example and thanks for sharing it with us. (Or more accurately thanks for putting up with all of our questions and demands for more pics!)

Dale
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  #62  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:23 PM
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What was the number stamped on the upper forward part of the left side grip frame? (Assuming it possibly is a number
....... 4 9
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  #63  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:28 PM
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When you say it is all-numbers matching does that include the right side stock(grip) serial number?

How is it serialized.......by pencil or is it stamped?

Please provide a good clear pic of that if possible. If it is stamped I am curious as to it's font as well.

If it is matching then even better. (My apologies if I missed this info, but a quick thread read turned up nothing specific to it's number.)
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  #64  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:33 PM
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....... 4 9
A "49" would be very very interesting with regards to it possibly going back to S&W more than once unless the more knowledgeable feel there is absolutely no way it could mean 1949. On my S&W M1917 examples I do not see any digits stamped where your "49" is, not that that means anything specifically with regards to your example.

I want to say I have seen simple two-digit factory rework year codes as well, but someone please correct me if they feel this could only be an inspector number and not a rework year code.

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  #65  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by tenntex32 View Post
When you say it is all-numbers matching does that include the right side stock(grip) serial number?

How is it serialized.......by pencil or is it stamped?

Please provide a good clear pic of that if possible. If it is stamped I am curious as to it's font as well.

If it is matching then even better. (My apologies if I missed this info, but a quick thread read turned up nothing specific to it's number.)
def 4 digit,, can't make out the first (assuming it's a 6 ) the others are (6) 8 7 8
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Old 07-26-2020, 09:48 PM
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def 4 digit,, can't make out the first (assuming it's a 6 ) the others are (6) 8 7 8
The lead handwritten serial number is to be expected on a correct original set of grips for the time period your revolver most likely shipped. Another plus in my book.

Over the years I have had pretty decent luck reading the faded handwritten serial numbers on my M1917 grips by taking numerous pictures of them with the macro setting, various flash modes, and in various direct/indirect lighting conditions. Not always foolproof but usually I will take a bunch of pics and then review them carefully on my laptop. More times than not it has helped determine the complete serial number of a grip for me.

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  #67  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:54 PM
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The lead handwritten serial number is to be expected on a correct original set of grips for the time period your revolver most likely shipped.

Another plus in my book.
i won't be using this as the plinker i wanted it to be, i guess i'll have to find another $125.00 plinker
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  #68  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:55 PM
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It won't hurt to put a few rounds downrange with it every now and then. It's the least you can do for the old gal.

After all if yer gonna manhandle her you should at least feed her every now and then.

Last edited by tenntex32; 07-27-2020 at 01:12 AM.
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  #69  
Old 07-26-2020, 09:58 PM
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It won't hurt to put a few rounds downrange with it every now and then. It's the least you can do for the old gal.
if it turns out a factory lc , i'll let the next owner shoot it
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  #70  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:03 PM
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maybe another thread on this ol piece of scrap iron
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  #71  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:06 PM
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if it turns out a factory lc , i'll let the next owner shoot it
I'll make you a deal. Go shoot it a few times and if it turns out it was originally shipped from S&W chambered in .45Colt I'll give you 95% of your $125 purchase price for it due to the additional wear.

That way you're only out 5% and you had the joy of shooting it.
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Old 07-26-2020, 10:09 PM
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I'll make you a deal. Go shoot it a few times and if it turns out it was originally shipped from S&W chambered in .45Colt I'll give you 95% of your $125 purchase price for it due to the additional wear.

That way you're only out 5% and you had the joy of shooting it.
.......
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  #73  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:09 PM
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maybe another thread on this ol piece of scrap iron
Start another'n and we'll go from there.

Just one gentle suggestion............let's start out with lots of good quality pics this time!

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  #74  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:11 PM
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Start another'n and we'll go from there.

Just one gentle suggestion this time.........lets start out with lots of good quality pics this time!
......
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  #75  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:12 PM
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Start another'n and we'll go from there.

Just one gentle suggestion this time.........lets start out with lots of good quality pics this time!
.........
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  #76  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:14 PM
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now that i know it isn't some cobbled together scrap iron, i'll get the letter form send out tomorrow on the 6878

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  #77  
Old 07-26-2020, 10:28 PM
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now that i know it isn't some cobbled together scrap iron, i'll get the letter form send out tomorrow on the 6878
Don't forget you will want the factory letter detailing the original ship date, recipient, and configuration....... and then the SWHF letter that may detail the rework performed at S&W when it was returned back to them.
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Old 07-26-2020, 10:31 PM
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Don't forget you will want the factory letter detailing the original ship date, recipient, and configuration....... and then the SWHF letter that may detail the rework performed at S&W when it was returned back to them.
is that the historian letter ? is 2 correct ?
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Old 07-26-2020, 10:40 PM
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is that the historian letter ? is 2 correct ?
Yes two separate letters.

The "factory letter" will only give you the ship date, who it was shipped to, and the original configuration of the revolver when it shipped. (There may be some additional information with regards to model and numbers typically shipped for the contract, etc....)

The SWHF letter will provide additional information with regards to any later additional work performed since it went back to S&W for rework. This is assuming they still have the information in their records. I have even seen SWHF information provide detail sales and options/order information with regards to the purchaser.

Unless things have changed I think you have to have the factory letter before obtaining the SWHF information.

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Old 07-26-2020, 10:52 PM
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Yes two separate letters.

The "factory letter" will only give you the ship date, who it was shipped to, and the original configuration of the revolver when it shipped. (There may be some additional information with regards to model and numbers typically shipped for the contract, etc....)

The SWHF letter will provide additional information with regards to any later additional work performed since it went back to S&W for rework. This is assuming they still have the information in their records. I have even seen SWHF information provide detail sales and options/order information with regards to the purchaser.

Unless things have changed I think you have to have the factory letter before obtaining the SWHF information.
i read in one book that there was 11 special order 45lcs about the serial number range of this one and 77 lc for commercial and the sn's are not avail for the lc cas of duplis or ? hope the letter helps
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:02 PM
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we did get a reply from the s&w historian claiming it was "special"
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:06 PM
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we did get a reply from the s&w historian claiming it was "special"
Okay then I'll give you 97% of the $125 purchase price after you shoot it!
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:09 PM
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Okay then I'll give you 97% of the $125 purchase price after you shoot it!
are you a gambler? if so, ill sell it to you for half of the value of a real lc and you do the letter
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:17 PM
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are you a gambler? if so, ill sell it to you for half of the value of a real lc and you do the letter
You mean real or original?

After all you paid $125 for a real .45Colt...........just may or may not be the original caliber.

Okay I'll take the chance for $62.50.

Pm me where to send the funds. I am assuming the $62.50 includes shipping and transfer costs?

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Old 07-26-2020, 11:19 PM
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You men real or original?

After all you paid $125 for a real .45Colt...........just may or may not be the original caliber.

Okay I'll take the chance for $62.50.

Pm me where to send the funds. I am assuming the $62.50 includes shipping and transfer costs?
is it live or is it memorex
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:23 PM
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so now the $64.000 question.. what is the value of a real lc ?
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by 4WHLDRFTN View Post
so now the $64.000 question.. what is the value of a real lc ?
Oh man you are asking the wrong fella here. I'm a Model 1917 guy.

It is a very interesting question.

Oh, it's now a $62.50 question though. Are you already wanting to buy it back from me? If so I'll have to wait and see what the experts feel it might possibly be worth if it turns out it was originally chambered in .45Colt.

I'll get back to you if I do decide to sell it but for now I think I'll hold onto it.

Last edited by tenntex32; 07-27-2020 at 02:33 PM.
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:42 PM
Hondo44 Hondo44 is offline
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Welcome!

Which book are you referring to that indicated 11 were made in 45 Colt in that serial # range?

If you have a factory letter, other than saying it's special, what cartridge does it verify as the original?


1. The factory 45 Colts were not marked with the cal or cartridge. Many 455 British contract revolvers are not marked either. See this database:

http://smith-wessonforum.com/s-w-han...ch-thread.html

Go to post #223 for the latest updated database info, page 5:

2. .455 2nd Models made for the Canadians in .45 Colt:

By Feb 1916 724 were manufactured for the Canadians, chambered in 45 Colt, without a cartridge roll mark on barrel, presumed for the RCMP [H of S&W, 3rd ed., pg. 203]. All of these that are known are in the 70XXX range.
Another 15 in 45 Colt were sold commercially in 1916; likely “over run” guns from the above order. All these.45 Colts were numbered above 40XXX.

3. Your gun was serviced at the factory 10-1951. Likely a replacement 45 Colt barrel and cyl was installed and the entire gun was refinished. The 41 stamped high up on the grip frame is just an assembler/inspector stamp and of no help.

4. The recoil shield on your gun may not be shaved off at the top half of the recoil shield. The factory would have had a difficult time retaining the headspace with a shaved recoil shield just by replacing the cyl.

5. The black rings at the beginning of the chamber throats are the transitional tapered shoulders in all cyls for cartridges with a rolled crimp. The 45 ACP is the only exception and has a square cut shoulder because it has a taper crimp and must head space on the cartridge mouth. Shown here in tenntex32's 1917 45 ACP cyl:

4 digit HE 45lc-img_6969-jpg

6. You have an extremely nice 455 2nd model that went to war across the pond, made it back to the USA, converted to 45 Colt properly with a brand new factory installed cyl at the factory, and treated to a factory finish* and 45 Colt cyl.

*After WWII, the factory also polished the rebound slide flat because that's the way they finishing new guns after the war.
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Old 07-26-2020, 11:49 PM
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I'm still in at at your sale offer of $62.50.
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Old 07-27-2020, 01:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Hondo44 View Post
The 41 stamped high up on the grip frame is just an assembler/inspector stamp and of no help.
Jim,

Is where the "49" is stamped on the left side upper forward grip frame a common location for original factory stamps for some variants? I do not see this area used for stamps on any of my M1917 examples that I own. Also, a 2nd Model .455 (a non-factory conversion to .45acp) that I used to own was not stamped in that area.

Nor is this area used for stamps on my commercial frame M1917, Brazilian M1917, 25-2, nor my pair of 28-2 examples. That's why it caught my attention right away.

Would it have been applied by or for an assembler/inspector when it was sent back for rework?

(Yes like an idiot with nothing better to do I just double checked all my N-frames.....but once again that's why the "49" on the OP's example caught my attention rather quickly.)

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Old 07-27-2020, 08:09 AM
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I'm still in at at your sale offer of $62.50.
oh c'mon,, i did use a brand new set of harbor freight screwdrivers to take it apart
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Old 07-27-2020, 08:15 AM
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That type of stamp is not seen often.

However, now that you ask, it reminds of two others I've seen on guns with factory caliber conversions. Although they were stamped at the top of the rear grip strap. Could that possibly be a 45 instead of 49? Maybe the OP could look at it with magnification.
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Old 07-27-2020, 08:37 AM
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That type of stamp is not seen often.

However, now that you ask, it reminds of two others I've seen on guns with factory caliber conversions. Although they were stamped at the top of the rear grip strap. Could that possibly be a 45 instead of 49? Maybe the OP could look at it with magnification.
i'll check it again but sure it's 49
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:12 PM
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Here's another example that has the factory rework date code on the left side grip frame bottom and the two digits "43" stamped on the left side forward grip frame.

(It was posted by forum member Goring's S&W here: (See post #11 in thread link.)

S&W Factory Repair/Refinish Stampings)

I too recall seeing the added two digits on other examples having the normal style factory rework date codes as well.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:42 PM
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Default factory caliber conversion example – post 1 of 2

I wholly support the recommendation made by several to request a Letter of Authentication and a search of the S&W Historical Foundation records. A preview of what may be found can be seen in post 2 of 2.

This Model 1917 Commercial was initially shipped in 1927 chambered in .45 ACP with fixed service sights. It was returned to the factory in 1949 and re-chambered in .45 Colt with target sights. A replacement cylinder and barrel is confirmed in the SWHF factory invoice in post 2 of 2 but is also apparent from the contrasting serial number font used compared to the original frame s/n.

Russ
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:43 PM
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Default factory caliber conversion example – post 2 of 2

Based on the information below I support the belief that the OP’s example was also returned for a factory conversion, including a replacement cylinder and barrel.

Russ
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:57 PM
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Beautiful example Russ. Thanks for the additional info and sharing it with us.

Can you tell us if there is a two digit stamp on your example on the upper forward left side grip frame?

And just because I am a M1917 junkie can you tell me if there are any small eagle head/number inspection stamps on the frame or yoke in the areas where their assembly numbers are stamped?

Dale

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Old 07-27-2020, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
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Based on the information below I support the belief that the OP’s example was also returned for a factory conversion, including a replacement cylinder and barrel.

Russ
is no star on this gun.

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Old 07-27-2020, 01:57 PM
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Could that possibly be a 45 instead of 49? Maybe the OP could look at it with magnification.
def 4 9

tenntec32 ,, can def see the pencil sn better here too 6878
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Old 07-27-2020, 02:15 PM
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I have seen a description regarding the use of the factory rework star stamped on the butt. It has to do with the factory estimating cost of repairs and rework and the star was stamped once the customer agreed to the repair/rework estimate and the work was performed.

The diamonds on the grip frame and barrel tell us it did go back to the factory for rework. Assuming it even has any, the stars or (other symbols) can be stamped on any number of hidden places on the revolver such as the right side grip frame, backside of removable sideplate, under the star extractor, rear facing yoke flat, etc...

While an example may have a visible star on the butt indicating factory rework or repair it is not a definite for it to have received one during factory rework/repair.

(Of course it has been said that the same rework symbol may be used for multiple reasons as well.)

Having the SWHF factory rework information to marry up with the rework date stamps and rework symbols actually stamped on the revolver goes a long way with helping our understanding of some of the ambiguities surrounding the symbols and their meaning(s).

Hondo44 has a good description of the random rework star usage by S&W per Roy Jinks: (see post #27 in the following link.)

S&W Factory Repair/Refinish Stampings

"STAR USAGE:
On the bottom of the butt or forestrap following serial #, or left side of grip frame indicates a factory rework; began ~ 1912, declined and became sporadic in the early 1960s before the decline of date stamps per Roy.

Deviations: Roy Jinks once said that the star wasn't always used. A nickel .32 RP that was built pre-war went back post war and got a new barrel, cylinder and re-finish; it is not marked by the SN, but does have stars on the barrel, cylinder and yoke.

If you informed S&W that you didn't want the star stamp on the butt, the factory would stamp it on the left side grip frame under the grips, which fits with a few guns we've seen with the star on the grip frame."
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Last edited by tenntex32; 07-27-2020 at 02:22 PM.
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