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S&W Revolvers: 1961 to 1980 3-Screw PINNED Barrel SWING-OUT Cylinder Hand Ejectors


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Old 06-28-2020, 04:05 PM
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I've noticed for a long time that the ampersand (&) between 'Smith' and 'Wesson' stamped on the left side of the barrels is different between many models. While I haven't had a big variety to compare, the ampersand on my M28-2 and M57 no dash looks "hand drawn", and has a bigger 'belly' than the one on my M19-3.

All three of my revolvers were made within about 5 years of each other, late '60s to mid '70s. Is there a rhyme or reason behind the difference? M19 is 1st, M28 is 2nd, M57 is 3rd:
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Old 06-28-2020, 06:55 PM
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Depends on the "5 years " and where the spans of time fall.

Pre war thru Pre Model Number and into early Model Number used the "lazy ampersand ". Most models, except early in their runs, that were sold by model number used the more upright ampersand.

Or so I've read.
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Old 06-28-2020, 06:58 PM
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The ampersand on your M57 is usually referred to as the “lazy ampersand” to differentiate it from the newer upright version on your model 19. This change was made in the spring of 1973 but with anything S&W there are always exceptions.

Remember the first rule of S&W collecting: there ain’t no rules. The second rule is that there is an exception to every rule!
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Old 06-28-2020, 10:33 PM
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We had this discussion a while back. At that time I pulled a bunch of Bangor Punta era revovers from the safe and did an ampersand inventory. The results were totally mixed. Some earlier guns had the upright &, while a few from slightly later had the lazy &. It seems both stamps were in use for a while. I do not think we can nail down any specific date for the change, at least in terms of implementation. As with lots of S&W features, there was a lot of overlap. My guess is that old dies were used until they were completely worn out.

Just like with parts, S&W was loathe to throw anything away if it still worked. I rather admire that in a company. It is called "efficient use of resources."
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Old 06-28-2020, 11:17 PM
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I prefer to go with my hypothesis in that the lazy ampersands were stamped on Mondays,maybe Tuesdays,..the straight up ones were Thursdays and Fridays,
Wednesdays were free days.
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