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Old 09-13-2018, 08:10 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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Default Factory Letter for Pre 29

Hi guys, I'm new on the forum now and have a question for anyone who can assist me. I printed off a form with the Smith & Wesson Historical Society to research my Pre 29 4" 5-screw, with my personal check for 75.00 bucks. Question, how long does this process take? My personal check hasn't cleared my bank. I have had NO contact with the email provided on the website. The form and personal check has been mailed back in mid August. I'm really wanting a Factory Letter on this super nice .44 magnum.
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:54 PM
EarlB EarlB is offline
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You can judge by when the check is cashed usually. You should get it a week or so after the check is cashed. You are coming up on about the time I'd expect them to be cashing it based on my experience. Total turnaround for me has been 6 weeks or so.

Earl
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:58 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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Thank you EarlB for your response. Hell, I figured it was lost somewhere in the mix of things and I would never see the paperwork.
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Old 09-14-2018, 05:15 AM
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Welcome! The SWHF Historian and his assistant run the entire Letter of Authenticity operation and their workload varies throughout the year. Also, sometimes they like to take vacations and the requests accumulate, so there is a backlog sometimes. In my experience a short wait has been 3 weeks (?!) and the longest about 4-5 months; I would guess yours will be at the shorter end of this range.

And while we are all waiting for your letter results, some .44 Magnum photos would be nice to see. Hope this is helpful.
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Old 09-14-2018, 10:31 AM
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Back when this was under S&W and only Roy was doing it the backlog got rather huge at times. It wasn't unusual for it to take 4-6 months. Now the average is usually around 4 weeks or less.
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Old 09-14-2018, 10:36 AM
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Just got a letter , was just over 4 weeks.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:15 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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Hey Folks, thanks for your input on the forum about the Factory Letter process. I just checked my bank statement on Friday, and behold, the check has cleared my bank. I look forward to gather this info on my 5-screw .44 magnum. Notice I didn't say Model 29..lol. I have seen the mistake a lot of people make when they actually don't have a clue in what they own.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:38 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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I was asked to post some pictures of my 5-screw S&W .44 magnum 4" barrel. Okay, I have a laptop computer and trying to figure out how to post pics. I have what I believe is a very nice revolver. First year production model 1956, serial number 153,XXX, correct "Coke Bottle" grips and box and tools. Interior of my original box has become discolored over the years too. Gun has very little evidence of being fired. The gentlemen I purchased from stated he didn't fire the revolver and owned it for 5 years. I know from my research, there were only 500 units made during this time period. This is my first 5-screw S&W and I have always wanted and searched for a 4" inch barrel model for years. And I must say the price of 98% to 99% 4 and 5 screw .44 magnums are truly becoming a investment if the condition and the extras/box/tools are truly valid to the gun.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:45 PM
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44 Magnums with a 4-inch barrel began to ship in quantity in November 1956 with approximately 165 being shipped in the first year of production, 1956. An additional 500 plus were shipped in the first six months of 1957 with a total of approximately 700 being made with a 5-screw frame.

I have S153810 that was shipped on November 8, 1956. The presentation case has a pebble grain covering on the exterior and is serial numbered to the revolver on the bottom in white grease pencil. Click on the top photo for a better look.

Bill




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Old 09-16-2018, 03:11 PM
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About 30 years ago I owned S153265.
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Old 09-16-2018, 04:29 PM
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"serial number 153,XXX"
There is some wiggle room on shipping dates for pre-29s in that SN range. I show other nearby Pre-29 SNs as shipping from 11/56 to 6/57.
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Old 09-16-2018, 05:27 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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Nice looking 4" Bill. I have serial number S153517, so unless I'm wrong here, my revolver was shipped in the first 6 months of production. I rate my revolver around 98% due to the slight turn line in the cylinder. There is no evidence of holster wear on the sharp points of the frame or barrel. I would love to find a professional case restorer who could duplicate the interior cloth to same specs. as the original factory cloth.
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Old 09-17-2018, 07:59 AM
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The first 44 Magnum with a 4-inch barrel has serial number S130884 and was taken to the Mid-Winter Matches in Florida as part of the factory collection in March 1956. The factory collection was later sold to Jesse E. Harpe who had a shop in Tampa. This important revolver has not been discovered (or reported) by a collector.

Bill
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Old 09-17-2018, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey M. Brooks View Post
Nice looking 4" Bill. I have serial number S153517, so unless I'm wrong here, my revolver was shipped in the first 6 months of production. I rate my revolver around 98% due to the slight turn line in the cylinder. There is no evidence of holster wear on the sharp points of the frame or barrel. I would love to find a professional case restorer who could duplicate the interior cloth to same specs. as the original factory cloth.
Contact Joe Cebull, member jcelect here, for the interior restoration.
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:15 PM
Jeffrey M. Brooks Jeffrey M. Brooks is offline
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Thank You Alan for the information.
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