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  #1  
Old 02-16-2015, 11:32 PM
SS57 SS57 is offline
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Default 13-2, To Chop or not

I have a M13, 4", SB, Blue. Finish shows honest usage but action is tight. Thinking about chopping it to 3" and rounding out the butt. Why should/shouldn't I do it? Pros, Cons? Will I need it re-finished after it is chopped? Which one then? If you have done this, let me know if you are happy with the results. Pics? Thx.
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2015, 11:39 PM
Joe Kent Joe Kent is offline
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Why not just put a set of Spegal stocks on it ,bob the hammer and polish the trigger ? The revolver will hide just as well and have a better sight picture as well as a slight bit higher velocity, or just sell it and buy a 3 inch.
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:47 PM
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Don't ruin a good gun.
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  #4  
Old 02-16-2015, 11:50 PM
SS57 SS57 is offline
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Good idea, but I do not like bobbed hammers. I just think it would be easier to do the mods than deal with the hassle of selling and buying guns. I don't know which avenue is cheaper.
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Old 02-17-2015, 12:19 AM
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Most here would recommend against doing what you propose. But on the other hand, it's your gun and at your expense, so the only opinion that counts is yours.
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Old 02-17-2015, 12:36 AM
Izzydog Izzydog is offline
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I say, keep it as it is. Just save your pennies and a 3"K frame will eventually show up. I'm not a fan of selling Smith and Wesson's, I always regret it!
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:43 AM
GerSan69 GerSan69 is offline
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I say: chop away. Cutting the barrel/recrowning/relocating the front sight and rounding the grip frame are pretty easy and most gunsmiths will do a good job for you. Keep in mind that the lettering on the barrel will no longer be centered, and the position of the serial number on the butt may interfere with cutting the grip down to the size of a "normal" round butt K frame. Refinishing is up to you - blueing or even a hard chrome finish.
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:57 AM
gqucool gqucool is offline
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Hey It's your gun so do what you want. I have been trying to find a S&W K frame 19/66 2.5 inch round butt .357!! Very hard to find & when I did $700.00 gulp! If you have the funds do your mods I think I would if I had a 13/65 & wanted a 3 inch K frame round butt .357 go for it!!
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  #9  
Old 02-17-2015, 07:15 AM
kbm6893 kbm6893 is offline
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The lettering not being centered would bug me. I wouldn't do it. Find a 3" barrel and have it installed.
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  #10  
Old 02-17-2015, 07:53 AM
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I can't think of anything wrong with what you're proposing. Three inch guns used to be easier to find. Anyway, there's just something about a customized revolver...
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Old 02-17-2015, 08:11 AM
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Bear in mind that if you do this you will not only be out the money to have the work done, but you'll also decrease the value of the gun overall. The off center lettering will be a dead giveaway to any future potential buyers. You'll have a lot more money into it than you could ever hope to recoup on a sale.
I wouldn't do it and just save up the money and look for a 3" gun.
Your gun, your choice.
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Old 02-17-2015, 09:07 AM
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I wouldn't do it for simply economic reasons. I would think it was a lot cheaper to sell gun one, and buy gun two.
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  #13  
Old 02-17-2015, 11:00 AM
Zoner Zoner is offline
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i would look for a 3" barrel and have it installed
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Old 02-17-2015, 11:09 AM
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Very good points on both sides of this mod. I will dig a bit deeper and make a decision. It will help past the time during this arctic cold snap that many of us are experiencing. Thx.
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  #15  
Old 02-17-2015, 11:17 AM
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I'd also buy a 3" gun or secondly, get a 3" barrel to swap.
Regardless if swapping or chopping (barrel, frame), unless I could do it myself, you will likely have more in it than its worth.
Just my opinion...
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Old 02-17-2015, 11:18 AM
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I was on Gunbroker a day or two ago, and there was a 3" M64 on there for $370 buy-it-now. I know it's a 38spl, but that is a fine round for CCW, and 357's under 4" don't always perform the way they were designed as far as bullet performance. And for that matter, I have a M10 heavy barrel in 4" that I carry AIWB that hides just fine. It can be done with a full length barrel, you just have to get creative.
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  #17  
Old 02-17-2015, 11:51 AM
JeepinSoldier JeepinSoldier is offline
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As a huge fan of the 3" K Frames (I have 4), Id suggest that you leave the 4" alone and look for a 3" so that you have one of each.

A friend has a 4" 13 and its a great shooter, especially with the full power .357's. I shoot the full power .357's out of the 3" guns, but its more pleasant from the longer barrels.
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Old 02-17-2015, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jack the toad View Post
I'd also buy a 3" gun or secondly, get a 3" barrel to swap.
Regardless if swapping or chopping (barrel, frame), unless I could do it myself, you will likely have more in it than its worth.
Just my opinion...
Im with Jack ...
The hard part is finding someone that can cut a channel slot then pin the FS blade like the factory did, soldering it on is alot easier but looks wrong to me, either way the barrel has to be removed first to cut it so replacing the barrel is cheaper with better end result.

3" Model 65's or 13's are fairly common and cost around $500
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  #19  
Old 02-17-2015, 02:25 PM
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I would round the butt, IF it doesn't cut into the serial number, and leave it a 4". A 3" K frame is too large and heavy to pocket carry, so you will probably be carrying in a holster. A 4" barrel carried in a pancake holster will push the butt into your side and the round butt will conceal better than a square butt.
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Old 02-17-2015, 03:44 PM
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If it were me, I'd rather find a beat up gun to customize. Chewing up a nice revolver to make it what you want, I think in time you would regret it. If you really want a 3" barrel, find a decent one and have it changed. But leave the butt the way it is.
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Old 02-17-2015, 03:51 PM
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My question has to be why do you want to do this?
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Old 02-17-2015, 05:14 PM
Muley Gil Muley Gil is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F75gunslinger View Post
If it were me, I'd rather find a beat up gun to customize. Chewing up a nice revolver to make it what you want, I think in time you would regret it. If you really want a 3" barrel, find a decent one and have it changed. But leave the butt the way it is.
I disagree. It's only a M13 and the owner should be able to do what he wants with it. If he is like me, a round butt K frame fits his hand better than a square butt.

In 1976, I took a 3 1/2" M27-2, which these days is a very desirable revolver, and had it converted to .44 Special.

Do I regret swapping out that 3 1/2" barrel for a factory .44 Special barrel and then having the .357 cylinder rechambered to .44 Special?

Heck NO! I carried that converted M27 as a rookie deputy sheriff and then as a city cop. It shot great. In 2006, I had it cut to 5" and reblued. Do I regret these actions either? Not a bit.

Now, the OP might save some cash if he saves his money and waits for 3" M13 to come along. But if he wants a revolver customized the way HE wants it, more power to him.
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  #23  
Old 02-17-2015, 05:47 PM
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I have no problem RB'ing a SB frame and have been accumulating S&W parts for dream builds to create when I retire (if that day ever comes) but none of my dream builds are copies of guns S&W already built that are fairly common like the 3" Model 13 and 65.

If someone wants to drop $400 into a $400 gun that at the end is worth $400 Im not so much saying "DONT do" it as "It doesnt make sense to me" when they can buy an original for $400 and have two guns.

I would sell the 13 then take the money it would have cost to do the conversion and buy a 3" Model 65 LadySmith with shrouded ejector rod and have a gun that carrys well, resist corrosion better and will appreciate more in time.


If you decide to do the build please take lots of pictures as we love dream builds....
PS there is a member who built a dream snub Model 10 with dovetailed FS that is so beautiful I would find out who did his work and use them if you do go fwd.

PSS what revision is your Model 13 ?

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Old 02-17-2015, 11:16 PM
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It is a -2, HB, pinned and recessed. Boy, looks like I have some homework to do. I will take my time and not rush into anything. I do not have a 3" in my collection and thought that I need something different. You always want something you don't have.
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:10 PM
JeepinSoldier JeepinSoldier is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS57 View Post
It is a -2, HB, pinned and recessed. Boy, looks like I have some homework to do. I will take my time and not rush into anything. I do not have a 3" in my collection and thought that I need something different. You always want something you don't have.
Trust me - You NEED a 3" K Frame!

Nowone who has ever shot one of my 3" K Frames ever wants to give it back. They balance perfectly and are heavy enough to moderate recoil but light enough to carry all day.

Shooters without a lot of forearm strength like to shoot them as well.

I just agree that you should look for an actual 3". I have the 3" guns and 4" .357's as well and both have their place. For what it would cost to modify your 4" gun you would be close to having an original 3".

I am also not against dream builds. I just purchased a Model 65 cylinder from Gunbroker and I am going to have it machined for moon clips and 9mm or .38 Super. It will then be a second cylinder for my 3" 65-5 which will also get a black front sight.
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:15 PM
Jim NNN Jim NNN is offline
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To paraphrase OJ's lawyer, the late Johnny Cochran:
"If you're going to chop, you must try and stop."
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muley Gil View Post
I disagree. It's only a M13 and the owner should be able to do what he wants with it. If he is like me, a round butt K frame fits his hand better than a square butt.....

Now, the OP might save some cash if he saves his money and waits for 3" M13 to come along. But if he wants a revolver customized the way HE wants it, more power to him.
Absolutely true...But, in this case, you are creating a custom revolver into a factory model that already exsists. And, you can buy the factory model for less than the cost of the gun you already have plus the modifications. So, it really makes no sense.

UNLESS its a sentimental gun that you are attached to anyway. Then, though its a bad idea as far as money is concerned, it would make sense to me that you are keeping a gun around you have history with but, updating it to your current needs.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:20 PM
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Instead of cutting the barrel, buy a 3" barrel and have it installed. Numrich shows a blue, 3" heavy barrel in stock for a 13-2 for $124.85

As to the round butt deal, I rather leave it as-is personally. That would be up to you if the extra money needed to do this is feasible.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:23 PM
GerSan69 GerSan69 is offline
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3" barrels are occasionally available on GunBroker... there's a seller that goes by Magnum Mark who has a "trailer-load" of S&W parts. I purchased a 3" Model 64 barrel from him a couple years ago and had my 'smith install it on a round-butt 64... turned out great! Total cost was around $200 IIRC, not cheap but certainly cheaper than a complete gun. Look him up. He's still around, I emailed with him just a few months ago. He may have just what you need.
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Old 02-18-2015, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muley Gil View Post
I would round the butt, IF it doesn't cut into the serial number, and leave it a 4". ..... the round butt will conceal better than a square butt.

Unless your serial # is centered ....... it might not even be doable..... try a set of magna's on the frame and see if it will work.........

On a 13 don't forget the refinish costs.....................

EngineGuy ...... got an extra 3" 13 you want to sell for $500..LOL..haven't seen one around here in years.

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Old 02-18-2015, 04:37 PM
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A 4" model 13 is a pretty good gun, if it is a basket case, you may consider it a good candidate for a mod job. But it sounds like a pretty good gun as it is now. I think financially, you may be better ff saving up for a 3" k-frame, or even offering an ad in the classified section here offering your model 13 and some cash for a 3" K frame.
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Old 02-18-2015, 06:08 PM
JeepinSoldier JeepinSoldier is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muddocktor View Post
Instead of cutting the barrel, buy a 3" barrel and have it installed. Numrich shows a blue, 3" heavy barrel in stock for a 13-2 for $124.85

As to the round butt deal, I rather leave it as-is personally. That would be up to you if the extra money needed to do this is feasible.
If you are set on modifying your 4" 13, this certainly looks like the way to go.

Lettering will be centered on the barrel and front sight is already installed. Would be just a simple barrel change for your gunsmith.

Did not realize that Numrich still had them in stock. The genie is out of the bottle now though............
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Old 02-18-2015, 06:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grayfox View Post
Bear in mind that if you do this you will not only be out the money to have the work done, but you'll also decrease the value of the gun overall. The off center lettering will be a dead giveaway to any future potential buyers. You'll have a lot more money into it than you could ever hope to recoup on a sale.
I wouldn't do it and just save up the money and look for a 3" gun.
Your gun, your choice.
I HAVE TO ROLL WITH Greyfox ON THIS. JUST LOOK FOR THE 3" GUN THAT MEETS YOUR NEEDS. WHEN YOU FIND IT, JUMP ON IT. IF IT NEEDS SOME TWEAKING, HAVE IT DONE. THEN SELL YOUR CURRENT GUN TO DEFRAY THE COST. YOU WILL EXTRACT THE FULL VALUE OF YOUR CURRENT GUN, AND PRESERVE THE VALUE OF YOUR NEW ACQUISITION. MEANWHILE, YOU CAN CONTINUE TO SHOOT YOUR 4" REVOLVER, KNOWING THAT EVENTUALLY YOUR DREAM WILL COME TRUE…..
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Old 02-18-2015, 11:06 PM
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There are very good arguments on both sides of such an idea. After some thought I have decided to skip the mods and keep the 4" pure while looking for a 3" RB K frame. Tom R had a good idea with a WTT post in the classified section. I can't remember the last time I saw a 3" K frame in person. Wish me luck.
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Old 02-18-2015, 11:22 PM
JeepinSoldier JeepinSoldier is offline
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Good Luck SS57!

They are out there and will come to you at odd times. I acquired the 2 3" 65's and the 3" 13 within the space of a year.

The 2 65's were both found in Pawn Shops. 1 in Colorado Springs and 1 in Lakewood, CO. The 3" 13 was posted as a wanted to trade in the for sale section of this forum.

If you check the for sale section of this forum regularly, the 3" K Frames come up pretty often. There is a 3" Model 64 for sale there right now: http://smith-wessonforum.com/guns-sa...pl-hk-vp9.html

I realize that you are probably looking for a 3" 13. Once they are listed they seem to go fast - and are more expensive than the 64's and 65's. So if you see one just jump on it. All the 3" K Frames seem to be going for $550 to $650.
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  #36  
Old 02-18-2015, 11:39 PM
Zipdog Zipdog is online now
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13-2, To Chop or not 13-2, To Chop or not 13-2, To Chop or not 13-2, To Chop or not 13-2, To Chop or not  
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Originally Posted by BAM-BAM View Post
Unless your serial # is centered ....... it might not even be doable..... try a set of magna's on the frame and see if it will work.........

On a 13 don't forget the refinish costs.....................

EngineGuy ...... got an extra 3" 13 you want to sell for $500..LOL..haven't seen one around here in years.
No refinish necessary. My gunsmith dovetails in from the front of the barrel makes a sight to fit and then recrowns. Looks way better than the factory original. One of my early posts shows it on a model 10.
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  #37  
Old 02-19-2015, 12:34 AM
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raylan007 raylan007 is offline
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Originally Posted by Grayfox View Post
Bear in mind that if you do this you will not only be out the money to have the work done, but you'll also decrease the value of the gun overall. The off center lettering will be a dead giveaway to any future potential buyers. You'll have a lot more money into it than you could ever hope to recoup on a sale.
I wouldn't do it and just save up the money and look for a 3" gun.
Your gun, your choice.
Stop saving when you reach $700-$750 that was what i encountered on GB the past few times I considered buying one. That was a shooter in very good condition without box or papers.
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