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


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Old 07-29-2020, 05:50 PM
Vonringler Vonringler is offline
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Default S&W Model 36-1 (3" barrel / adj. sights)

I have a S&W Model 36-1 with a 3" barrel and adjustable sights. I am told the gun is very rare but have also been told they haven't made such a gun. Can anyone give me some history on model 36's with adjustable sights? If you have any information about that I would appreciate you letting me know.
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Old 07-29-2020, 06:04 PM
Injunbro Injunbro is offline
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They're mentioned in the SCSW volume 3 under the Model 36 Model 50. They're rare, no idea of value.
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Old 07-29-2020, 06:20 PM
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Welcome! The model 36-1 Targets were part of an intermittent run of adjustable sight J frame .38s, some made before model numbers, some model 50s, 36s and 36-1s. Reportedly about 2136 made over about 20 years, the last in about 1975. Yours would be a later one.

If you can post photos that would help confirm it is original. And we really like photos too.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:26 PM
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Here is a picture of a Mod 36-1 Target. It dates to Oct 71. I was always told it can't be. None were made that late. It letters as a 36-1 fixed sight, but the work in factory quality. Unfortunately I can't get any other search's as records have not been digitized up th that date yet. My opinion is that it was in inventory as a regular 36-1 and they received a request for a 3" Target so it was pulled from stock and converted. It just can't be verified.


I gave up trying to document and gave it to David Carroll for some future auction.
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:22 PM
Texas Star Texas Star is offline
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I believe that writer Terry Murbach (sp?) had one he called his Trail Masterpiece.

A splendid idea until the M-60-4 appeared. (I know about M-36-6; I like stainless.)

He may have added the sights.
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:30 PM
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I have a 36-1. I always wanted a target.
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:53 PM
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OP, welcome to the Forum!
What kind of front sight does it have? The same as H Richard or like a Model 15?
Reason I ask is that I had one or two 36-1s converted to adjustable sights, including real J-frame rear sights, back in the late 70s - early 80s by a Denver gunsmith named Tom Butler. He did incredible work. You couldn't tell it from a factory job. I've always wondered what happened to those after I sold them off....
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Old 07-29-2020, 11:41 PM
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If the sights were not factory installed then it is more likely that the front sight would give that away rather than the rear. Unlike all the larger frames installing J adjustables does not require a milling cut for an elevation nut. Installing J adjustables is so simple that I did one with only files, a drill and a tap. It looked factory. The required high front is harder to make look right.

I'd like to see a picture looking straight at the muzzle.
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Old 07-30-2020, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H Richard View Post
Here is a picture of a Mod 36-1 Target. It dates to Oct 71. I was always told it can't be. None were made that late. It letters as a 36-1 fixed sight, but the work in factory quality. Unfortunately I can't get any other search's as records have not been digitized up th that date yet. My opinion is that it was in inventory as a regular 36-1 and they received a request for a 3" Target so it was pulled from stock and converted. It just can't be verified.


I gave up trying to document and gave it to David Carroll for some future auction.
I believe your 36-1 is a fake! The original targets did not have a pinned in front sight and the installation of a Mod 34 rear sight is easy! Do you remember the serial number for my data base?
To the OP;
In 1975 S&W produced 213 36-1 target guns in serial number range #2J3134-#2J3347. 202 were sold at that time. The -1 indicates a 3" Heavy Barrel gun.
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Old 07-30-2020, 02:42 PM
Vonringler Vonringler is offline
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Thank you all for your quick reply and input. Here is a few pictures of my Model 36-1 (Serial #J921429).
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Old 07-30-2020, 07:25 PM
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My 36-1 Target s/n was 16J487, which shipped Oct 71.
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Old 07-30-2020, 07:50 PM
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Welcome to the Forum

I am fond of the 3" Model 36 Chiefs Special Target





They are wonderfully accurate revolvers it is a shame they are not more common
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Old 07-30-2020, 10:25 PM
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I've posted before about having my front sight changed on my M25-2 at the Springfield Service Center. I couldn't see a pin on the original patridge front sight standard on barrels of 6" or more. I wanted to holster the gun so I could shoot qualification with it. I had the M25-2 returned with the patridge sight and part of the seared pin in the sealed plastic bag that S&W always returned customer's parts in. The new ramp sight is perfect but the pin stands slightly proud of the base.
Based on the pin on the front sight of this 36-1, I conclude the gun did not ship with that sight. I note the other examples pictured have a sight base as well.
It's a splendid gun, I'd be proud to own but I don't believe it was made with those sights.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:07 AM
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Howdy Von, and welcome to the forum from central Wyo.

Yes, I too really like the 3" Chiefs, with or without the target sights.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:32 AM
GerSan69 GerSan69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colt_saa View Post
Welcome to the Forum
I am fond of the 3" Model 36 Chiefs Special Target
They are wonderfully accurate revolvers it is a shame they are not more common
Hi colt, that is exactly the type of sight I had Tom install on my guns back in the day. And like jcelect mentioned, we used Model 34 sights that were readily available at gun shows back then for the rear sight. Yours is a beauty, brings back fond memories, even though yours is the real deal.
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Old 07-31-2020, 11:35 AM
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My 36-6. I paid $915 for it about 3 years ago.



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Old 07-31-2020, 02:31 PM
Vonringler Vonringler is offline
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I am curious to know if this gun came from the factory with these sights or were changed/added onto later. If you have any input on it that would be great
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Old 07-31-2020, 10:54 PM
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Default 3" HB 36

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vonringler View Post
I am curious to know if this gun came from the factory with these sights or were changed/added onto later. If you have any input on it that would be great
Sir, look at the front sight base of Colt SSAs gun! Your gun has no base! The ONLY positive answer to your question would be to send for a factory letter for your gun. It will tell you to what shop the gun was shipped, the date of shipment, and the configuration of the gun when it left the factory.
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