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Old 01-12-2021, 10:51 PM
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Default Model 64 DAO

Basically, what is involved in changing a m64 DAO into a SA/DA revolver? I have a chance to purchase a DAO and would like to change it to a regular type of revolver. I have not personally seen the revolver yet, but it does have a 4 in. barrel. It may have been an ex-police revolver, I don't know yet. And, what is the value of one of these, assuming very good condition? I have to travel to see it and am trying to cover my bases, so to speak, before the trip.
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Old 01-12-2021, 11:27 PM
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Basically, what is involved in changing a m64 DAO into a SA/DA revolver? I have a chance to purchase a DAO and would like to change it to a regular type of revolver. I have not personally seen the revolver yet, but it does have a 4 in. barrel. It may have been an ex-police revolver, I don't know yet. And, what is the value of one of these, assuming very good condition? I have to travel to see it and am trying to cover my bases, so to speak, before the trip.
Itís not difficult but sometimes the parts arenít quite drop fit. Ask the owner to tell you if there is a NY1 stamped in the crane. Thatís an NYPD gun and I wouldnít modify that, although if the new parts drop in you can always convert it back to DAO if you wanted to.
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Old 01-12-2021, 11:27 PM
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Youíd want to buy a hammer and trigger set that would allow single and double action, and install them in your revolver.

I have a M64 DAO much as you describe and have come to appreciate the sheer simplicity of DAO. Hereís the thread: First Post, First S&W, Great Deal!

I wouldnít bother converting it, if i were you. Buy. Then shoot, clean, repeat.

Last edited by Justin T; 01-12-2021 at 11:36 PM.
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Old 01-12-2021, 11:30 PM
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Just get a new H & T - a used set that has already been fitted should work.
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Old 01-12-2021, 11:31 PM
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Shoot it first before deciding to make any modifications. I shoot all my DA/SA revolvers DA only, and have a 3" 64 with great DA trigger that also allows me to stage as if I was shooting SA.
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Old 01-13-2021, 12:29 AM
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Justin T, thanks for the link to last year. What is a light, but safe, spring set to get? I'll of course wait till I see the revolver and try it, but I was wondering a lighter trigger pull would entail. Also, no remarks about the value of this revolver?
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Old 01-13-2021, 01:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Sistema1927 View Post
Shoot it first before deciding to make any modifications. I shoot all my DA/SA revolvers DA only, and have a 3" 64 with great DA trigger that also allows me to stage as if I was shooting SA.
I have a DAO 64 that is comparable, great trigger. Sistema has it right, try before you buy.. replacement parts.

I believe my 64 was a guard service gun and likely smoothed out the old fashioned way, lots of trigger pulls. Certainly wish my other Smiths had the smoothness of that DAO. With the barrel length, balance and long smooth trigger, it is laser and a joy to shoot.
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Old 01-13-2021, 02:23 AM
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If it's an NY-1 DAO Model 64 I'd leave it as is. They're collectible given their NYPD provenance.
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Old 01-13-2021, 07:11 AM
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"And, what is the value of one of these, assuming very good condition?"

Just a few short months ago this would have been a $300-350 gun. In the current environment I would look at completed auctions or sales for similar guns - then try 'not' to pay those prices. In rational times actual selling prices reflected the true market prices for items but not now, stuff is going for 25-300% over a year ago.
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Old 01-13-2021, 08:54 AM
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You have to pay attention to the hammer nose. If it’s spring loaded it’s a post 1988 gun and you need to match the hammer with another one that’s the same. You can ID the hammer by the position of the rivet when looking for a new one
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Old 01-13-2021, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Igiveup View Post
Justin T, thanks for the link to last year. What is a light, but safe, spring set to get? I'll of course wait till I see the revolver and try it, but I was wondering a lighter trigger pull would entail. Also, no remarks about the value of this revolver?
In a double action only revolver, I am a believer of a bit heavier trigger pull, but with a priority on smoothness through the length of the pull.

I would shoot it for awhile before making spring changes, but if that is what you want to do there are many options available from Wilson Combat, Clark and Wolff. Iíd probably not get any lighter than 8 pounds or so.

Re: value, condition dependent, but $400 or so seems right for a non-NY1 gun with similar features/similar condition to my own.

Sellerís market likely to increase that to a good degree.
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Old 01-13-2021, 10:59 AM
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I got one about 3 years ago. It's a 64-5.
I thought at the time I would swap out
the hammer/trigger. But after using it
for a while I found I really really like it.

In winter it goes in the parka and when
you present it there is NOTHING to snag.

You might want to get it in your hot little
hands and try it with snap caps for a few
weeks. I think you will like it. It's like
mold, it grows on you.
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Old 01-13-2021, 11:23 AM
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I just did that conversion this week. Found the parts here on the site, took me about 20 minutes to complete. I watched a couple of videos on how to do it. As mentioned above , make sure the parts are for your year/model.



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Old 01-13-2021, 11:55 AM
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My opinion is:

Buy exactly what you want! If you buy something to convert, change, turn in to....... it will cost you more in the long run, will take time and probably not be as good as if you just purchased what you wanted in the first place.

These days Gun Smithing, parts and shipping firearms are way too expensive and lead times for highly qualified GS's are ridiculous. Forget "the bargain"!

Not the time to be penny wise and pound foolish. There are still many vintage revolvers in great shape for the getting if you are willing to go and search one out.

Last edited by chief38; 01-13-2021 at 11:58 AM.
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Old 01-13-2021, 01:41 PM
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My opinion is the exact opposite. Make what you want if it makes you happy. I’ve rebarreled a handful of revolvers myself and I enjoy them more than ones I’ve bought.
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Old 01-13-2021, 02:07 PM
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What you want may not be available. Then you have to do it yourself anyway.
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Old 01-13-2021, 03:26 PM
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Thanks for all the input. I will pick up the revolver in a couple days and the try it out to see how I like the DAO. Until then, I guess it is a wait and see situation. The asking price is $425, and I don't know if it is a NYPD revolver or not. Without knowing the future of the gun buying situation, I have decided to get it while I can.
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Old 01-13-2021, 03:48 PM
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$425 doesn’t seem too terrible in this market, given where I think you are located. Pics when you pick it up!
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Old 01-13-2021, 04:58 PM
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My opinion is the exact opposite. Make what you want if it makes you happy. Iíve rebarreled a handful of revolvers myself and I enjoy them more than ones Iíve bought.
If you have all the parts, knowledge, skill and tools - then doing it yourself is a viable option. For someone to first have to go out, purchase parts, ship, wait, wait, wait, and pay, pay, pay in the HOPE that the GS will do a great job is IMO not the best option. That said - to each his own OR what ever floats your boat........

PLUS>>>>> The gun is not his yet! Why not just buy what he wants in the first place?

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Old 01-14-2021, 02:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Igiveup View Post
Thanks for all the input. I will pick up the revolver in a couple days and the try it out to see how I like the DAO. Until then, I guess it is a wait and see situation. The asking price is $425, and I don't know if it is a NYPD revolver or not. Without knowing the future of the gun buying situation, I have decided to get it while I can.

Be sure to post photos when/if you get it.
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Old 01-15-2021, 01:06 AM
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My opinion is the exact opposite. Make what you want if it makes you happy. Iíve rebarreled a handful of revolvers myself and I enjoy them more than ones Iíve bought.
I've used these exact words myself. I've always been a proponent of customizing, whether it's grips, guns, holsters and so on. I traded off many guns I had converted back in the late 70s-early 80s, but I've kept everything I've re-done in the last 10, including a Model 64-5 that I re-barreled to 3". The 4" 64 and 65 are perfect candidates for re-barreling or even cutting the barrel to make a 2 1/2 or 3" (2 1/2 to copy those 2.5" Model 10s made for one or more State Police agencies a few decades back.)
As for swapping parts, I picked up a 3" Model 60-3 DAO a few years ago but never used it because it had a factory bobbed hammer and that same finish used on NY-1s. I found a trigger and hammer that worked together and put them in. It shoots as great as it looks. And I of course, kept the parts "just in case."
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Old 01-15-2021, 09:45 AM
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If I didn't know better, I would think this thread was started by one of my good friends - lol! He is the type that ALWAYS has to have at least a few guns "out" being worked on, modified, converted, acurized, etc. I know him for 27 years now and I can not honestly think of a time he actually did not have something in the works.

He has had some success with different services, Gun Smiths, etc. but 50-60% of the time has had nothing but problems, shipping issues, shipping damages, poor finishes, push off, light primer strikes, poor B/C Gaps, jamming, misfeeds, damage to things that were not damaged prior ,etc. To make the situation even sadder, he mostly spends more money on the mods than if he bought a gun that he wanted to turn it into in the first place!

While we all (his friends) realizer his "joy" is to always fiddle-futz with guns (does same things to other stuff he owns), it is usually counter productive, costs him way too much and he's only satisfied less than half the time. HEY, if this is fun to him or anyone else - far be it for me to stop anyone, but I find that in many instances, this is the case.

I guess many here have had success or have done the work and mods themselves. If someone is fully capable, has all the tools, the know-how, time and patience - then I say go for it. For someone who does not even own the gun yet and wants to buy one he doesn't like in it's current condition - it seems silly to me to do that and send it out, spend money and pray it comes back perfect. Again - just my personal opinion.
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Old 01-15-2021, 01:15 PM
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I don’t do “mods” I make guns in a factory configuration that I prefer. Even use all factory springs. I learned my lesson about lighter springs.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:09 AM
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O.K. got the revolver. sn is CBS 33xx. It is a m64-5, HB RB and has Hogue rubbers on it, newer cylinder release, pre-lock. The frame grip area is serrated. I fired it six times for a test today, hit the bull three times and about an inch left with the other three rounds, ten yard target rested on the wood pile. I think I am going to like it. I'll clean it tomorrow. I can't really determine the year of birth, I have the fourth edition of the Smith book, but these newer serial numbers always fall somewhere in between what is listed in the book.
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