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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 11-19-2020, 08:29 AM
SuperMan SuperMan is offline
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Default 657 Hunter Mystery finally solved...

About 10 years ago, while I was out of state hunting, a friend called telling me he had put a .41 Magnum on hold for me at a local shop...and if I didn't want it he would cancel the hold... It turned out to be a 657-2 Hunter...serial number HTR00005...

The Catalog said that there were 2000 made starting in 1991 made with unfluted cylinder and black ramp front sight. Mine however had a fluted cylinder. A Hunter with a fluted cylinder is pictured in the book. No mention was made of special serial numbers and no HTR prefix serial numbers were listed in the serial number section of the book. Also only 1200 were made according to the factory..

Made several inquiries here and although several members had these guns other than the information in The Catalog no one had any information beyond that.

Inquired to Lew Hortons and received an email back stating that they received the gun from S&W in 1993 but it was not one of their "Exclusives"...so I finally bit the bullet and sent the money for a Letter.

Unfortunately the letter I received back told me nothing that wasn't already in the catalog and had some errors... It also stated that the guns were in the standard serial number range. I wrote a cover letter and returned the original to the Foundation and about two weeks later received a new letter that was much more detailed and specific to #5.

Turns out the gun was shipped to LH on April 13, 1993. For reasons unknown it was shipped back to S&W by LH for modification (fluted cylinder) on July 26, 1995.

As to the HTR serial number prefix... Only the first 303 657-2 Special Classic Hunters were so serialized....reason unknown...

They also sent the shipping documents and Special Production Models for 1991 sheet which was very much appreciated...

So most of the mystery of the gun is now solved...but now I'll always wonder why did a special run gun made in 1991 not get shipped till 1993 and although LH shipped the gun back to the factory for modification, did they do so or was it at the request of a customer who had purchased the gun... Now that they are gone I'll probably never find out...

So if you have a 657-2 Classic Hunter with an HTR serial number you know you have one of 303 with that prefix...

Bob

Below is the gun wearing Pachmayer grips instead of the stock Hogue...
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657 Hunter Mystery finally solved...-028_zpsgc2fvkwa-jpg   657 Hunter Mystery finally solved...-029_zps2xfxcibr-jpg  

Last edited by SuperMan; 11-19-2020 at 08:41 AM.
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Old 11-19-2020, 09:16 AM
brucev brucev is online now
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Wonderful revolver. Always did prefer the fluted cylinder. Sighted in at 50 yds. Time to go hunting! Sincerely. bruce.
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Old 11-19-2020, 09:37 AM
SuperMan SuperMan is offline
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...always liked them also...so it didn't break my heart when it came back mine was an actual factory modification not one that someone just dropped in.

I did however just pick up an unfluted cylinder so at some point in the future some other owner can have their choice.

This is a completed auction for serial number HTR007x...notice it has a red ramp front sight and unfluted cylinder. The original S&W letter that I received said that the guns came with RR front sights....the new letter dosen't say anything about the sights other than that mine has a black one... The Catalog says they came black...odd...

S&W 657-2 .41 Magnum - Revolvers at GunBroker.com : 882208605

Anyone else out there have a HTR prefix gun?

Thanks...Bob

Last edited by SuperMan; 11-19-2020 at 09:38 AM.
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Old 11-19-2020, 10:58 AM
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Scharfschuetzer Scharfschuetzer is offline
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That's one very nice revolver and an interesting piece of research. I've always really liked the 41 Magnum and I still have my old service Model 58 (much holster worn) and a nice virtually NIB Model 57 6." They are pretty standard compared to yours, but they shoot very well with my cast bullets.
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Old 11-19-2020, 12:23 PM
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My first example of product code 103820 was acquired in August of 1993. It is serial numbered HTR02xx and manufactured on a square butt frame. So your HTR prefix revolver is not out of line having been shipped in April of 1993. Obviously I changed my grips out for the Hogue produced Brazilian Rosewood



When I had learned that product code 103820 had been switched to a round butt revolver frame but wearing conversion grips I purchased a second example in March of 1996 that is serial numbered CAJ24xx

As to the HTR prefix, I was not aware that so few pieces shipped that way. What does stick in the back if my memory is that I had to deal with a specific small distributor to get my 657 Classic Hunter back then. It think I bought it out of our original Internet . . . . . The Shotgun NEWS
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