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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 04-05-2021, 01:44 PM
C,Mudrock C,Mudrock is offline
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While seeking 1917/1937 I got Lucky While seeking 1917/1937 I got Lucky While seeking 1917/1937 I got Lucky While seeking 1917/1937 I got Lucky While seeking 1917/1937 I got Lucky  
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It's very important to list what you want to sell correctly.
Replacing the 1937 .45acp Brazilian contract 1917 had been on my bucket list for awhile. So being 74 - I decided I'd best do it while I could. Unfortunately they'd gone up in price a good bit. Before & during the time I was hospitalized for heart surgery, I watched prices climb, even got out bid on GB for repair projects & encountered one SCAMMER who got kicked off this forum. Just as I was beginning to despair of ever finding one I could afford - I decided to just search for ".45 acp Smith Revolver" sure enough there was a very nice 1937 Brazil Contract listed as "MILSURP Smith .45acp victory model" only a couple of hundred more than I had to spend - but it had been on for awhile with NO BIDS & a BEST OFFER option. I offered what I had to spend & the seller sold it to me - guess he had no interest due to his description. Both I, & my FFL dealer couldn't believe how nice it was for the money - being cheaper than some very ratty ones. It showed unusually light wear, & is in near-mint mechanical condition. The grips are numbered to the pistol - although the earlier 1917 type. The serial # says it is an early 1946 delivery to Brazil - but the frame has the round notch rear sight - with a red accent line. I was born in 1946 so it appears fate saved THIS revolver for me. I couldn't be happier - even found a nice field holster for it .
See photos.
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Old 04-05-2021, 02:05 PM
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Even with the modified front sight, that's a nice pickup. They are fun shooters. Enjoy.
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Old 04-05-2021, 02:25 PM
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Great catch!

Smooth grips came on most 1946 contract guns and yours be original, check for serial # stamped on back side of right grip.

MODEL 1917 ARMY BRAZILIAN CONTRACTS (1937 & 1946)

In 1937 S&W made some 25,000 of the Model 1917 Army commercial models with barrels stamped "S.&W. D.A. 45" left side and SMITH & WESSON right side, under contract for Brazil, most in serial range 181983-207043 with exceptions as usual that have serial #s far out of this range, most using the post WW I 1930’s produced flat top frame with sq notch rear sight (as did all N frames since the 1926/1927 time frame with no model name changes to differentiate), and are stamped “MADE IN U.S.A.” on right frame side with the small S&W trademark logo on left side of frame. They also have a Brazilian Crest on the side plate dated 1937. These frames will not have military inspector stamps. This first Brazilian 1917 ARMY contract revolvers had 1930s commercial checkered Svc grips with flat chrome plated medallions. Mushroom ext rod knobs. Many will have cyl hold open detents. Use caution if you remove the yoke.

Note: The Brazilian Expeditionary Force deployed to Italy without owning any ordnance, trained with obsolete French weaponry, and were initially equipped with ‘03 Springfields and later M1’s. It’s reported that the officers and MPs used the 1937s. See pictures and posts #1, #18, and #20, also #27 for spelling of Brazil: Modified 1917


In 1946 the 2nd contract Model 1917 Army Brazilian run was of about 11,834 total; most with older pre 1926/1927 style round top strap and small U notch rear sight. This is why most 1946 Brazilians do not have post war sliding bar safeties and likely not side plate safeties, but may have cyl hold open detents. Use caution if you remove the yoke.
Most, 9151, using surplus WW I produced frames in the 166,000 – 175,150 range with many exceptions as usual that have serial #s far out of this range (see other file also). There are 2,685* with the newer flat top commercial frames generally in the 207,196 – 209,878 range, with a few round tops also reported in that range. Those using old inventory military barrels are only stamped "S.&W. D.A. 45" left side; those with newer commercial barrels will also have SMITH & WESSON on right side. These '46 contract guns are also mostly stamped “MADE IN U.S.A.” with small S&W trademark logo on left side of frame. But they had WW I surplus 1917 # matching smooth grips both concave and convex tops. Although some have lettered with checkered med grips. However, the butt serial #s read with barrel to the left like all post war hand ejectors, and is the easiest way to know for which contract the gun was built.
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Old 04-05-2021, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C,Mudrock View Post
... The serial # says it is an early 1946 delivery to Brazil - but the frame has the round notch rear sight - with a red accent line. ...
A lot, possibly most, of the Second Group (1946) have the earlier rounded rear sight.

About condition:
Some or all of the First Group (shipping dates of 1938+) went to Italy in WWII with the BEF as Jim posted. The fact that they saw service in the war accounts for so many of them being in such deplorable condition.

Since yours wasn't assembled and shipped until 1946, it obviously avoided WWII, not to mention whatever the First Group were subjected to in Brazil from 1938 on. So it is not unusual to find Second Group M1917s that are in excellent condition, like yours.

I really like my Second Group Brazilians. I hope you enjoy yours.
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Old 04-06-2021, 06:27 PM
C,Mudrock C,Mudrock is offline
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Thanks for the illuminating replies. I assure you that I am enjoying it - even though I haven't got to the range with it yet.
Since I bought it I have left it out on my desk & admire it with every glance. It is by no means my most efficient handgun, all my handguns are steel. some are revolvers - but of the revolvers the Smith 1937 is my favorite.

My first one I had bought from one of my students who needed money. He said he had contemplated shooting himself with it a few times - This helped me decide to buy it from him. It showed a good bit of wear, & the barrel was very worn, I replaced it with a US GOVT PROPERTY barrel. It shot very well - but I sold it for something I needed more - but always regretted selling it. Now I have a better one & Know to KEEP IT.

*Anybody encounter a red accent line following the contour of the notch - at the rear of the rear sight ? Almost looks like a plastic inset - from the factory ?
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Old 04-06-2021, 07:44 PM
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... *Anybody encounter a red accent line following the contour of the notch - at the rear of the rear sight ? Almost looks like a plastic inset - from the factory ?
The factory didn't do that.

You said "insert". So metal has been removed and replaced with plastic? Or perhaps the rear sight has merely been "enhanced" with dayglo red nail polish? The latter sounds more likely and should be easy to remove.
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Old 04-06-2021, 09:01 PM
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C,Mudrock, congratulations on your find. It pays to be persistent! I have several 1917's, and my Brazilian's see regular range time. I thoroughly enjoy shooting them, as I am confident you will as well. One I have is SN 191745.... couldn't pass that one up!
I'm looking forward to hearing about your trip to the range with it!
Here's 191745:
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:06 AM
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One of the nicer Brazilians I've seen.
Mine came to me from a friend for couple hundred dollars - but had been Parkerized at some point. I put some repro M1917 grips on it and it serves as a fun shooter and woods gun.

It serves as a stand-in beater for a very good 1917 I found.

Enjoy!
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Old 04-08-2021, 11:56 AM
C,Mudrock C,Mudrock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Flash View Post
The factory didn't do that.

You said "insert". So metal has been removed and replaced with plastic? Or perhaps the rear sight has merely been "enhanced" with dayglo red nail polish? The latter sounds more likely and should be easy to remove.
I don't know how the red was applied - almost looks like a half round plastic ring. The Mods to the sights on my 1937 (cutting down the rear half of the front sight - enough to create a vertical surface that is painted white + the red outlining of the rear sight notch) I really like. - they help define my sight picture. Always wondered why something like this was not done by the factory - the big shiny fin, front sight is not easy to see.
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Old 04-08-2021, 12:12 PM
C,Mudrock C,Mudrock is offline
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I had two local dealer friends, scouring gun shows for me. My "shooter grade 1937" budget was $500. Only one of them even found a distressed finish Shooter Grade at a local show @$800. Meanwhile I bid $300. on a "PROJECT 1937" - shortened with a totally bad ex-nickel finish & cracked mother of pearl grips - IT looked like it was exhumed with a dead gangster - that Project sold for over $500. on G.B.
Still hard to believe I purchased such a beauty - when all I expected to get was a shooter - possibly needing work. Patience & diligent searching paid off - & I learned alot in the process.
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