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Old 08-04-2018, 07:58 PM
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The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture.  
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I have two early transitional 39-2 pistols both blue. The onle difference between the two that I can find is the hole in the hammer of one of them and not the other. Otherwise identical. Dont really get the hammer difference either as they are only 90 apart from one another according to their serial numbers (both A141xxx)

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Old 08-05-2018, 08:15 AM
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Here is early model 39 shipped 1959. I know it has short safety lever & long extractor. If anyone sees any other nuances please point them out.






My steel frame Model 39 in 63K serial number range.



Then there is this variant..! Devel Full house conversion of the Model 39-2 by Charles Kelsey of mid 1970s.

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Old 08-05-2018, 08:57 AM
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The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture.  
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Here is early model 39 shipped 1959. I now it has short safety lever & long extractor. If anyone sees any other nuances please point them out.
Mike, that's a nice one, but what is / was the one in the upper right of the 4 photo box with the short duck-tail and the long safety lever ? Sal

Bob Freilich's (Tired Gunsmith) pre-39 was also shipped to Rex but in November 1955. Rex was just about "the" NYC gunshop mostly for LEOs and those special chosen few that had Concealed "Carry" Permits in the City of NY.
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Old 08-05-2018, 11:53 AM
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Mike, that's a nice one, but what is / was the one in the upper right of the 4 photo box with the short duck-tail and the long safety lever ? Sal


Sal it looks like that might the the Steel Frame model 39 from the pic in post above and compared it to the photo of the 4. But that still leaves me with 1 unaccounted for in that post. I looked through my inventory sheets and I have a couple of 39-2s but they are shooter grade. I do have a really nice 539.. but I am not sure that is one of them. Too long ago and the s/n in that post are obscure.
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Old 08-09-2018, 07:09 PM
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The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture. The seductive Model 39s as collectors' subculture.  
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Talking Odd Model 39 A prefix in the 120000 range

A recent acquisition which found it's way to me through a friend.

Currently on its way to a new home is a VERY late serial number model 39, SN: A120184. It is 1 of only 3 known in the highest known serial numbered model 39s. The other 2 are a consecutive set owned by another member. This one is another consecutive serial numbered to his 2.

This means it is properly stamped "MODEL 39" and it has all the correct features of a model 39, not a mix-and-match combo with both 39 and 39-2 "DNA".

The majority of "transition sightings" of the model 39 / 39-2 are mostly in or nearer the 110000 range.

There are many others peculiar 39/39-2s out there. All you have to do is look carefully and beware of mixed parts guns that (more than likely) had parts switched AFTER it left the factory. This is the most difficult to determine at times is whether it is CORRECT as it was shipped from the factory, when new ... or ... it was Bubba-ed somewhere down the line.

This one is 10,000+/- serial numbers higher than the highest MODEL 39 I have ever seen or owned, however, this one has an " A " prefix, well into the 39-2 serial numbers yet, it is a "true" MODEL 39.

Speculation of whether a special order or, somewhere at S&W they found a hand full of 39s they overlooked or, just another piece of hard proof that it "seems" S&W never threw anything away that could be sold ... and ... more evidence of shipping / numbering inconsistencies.

Pretty neat, I think.

When it arrives I will take more pictures but until then, enjoy these.
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Old 08-09-2018, 09:52 PM
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A recent acquisition which found it's way to me through a friend.

Currently on its way to a new home is a late serial number MODEL 39, SN: A120184.

It is 10,000+/- serial numbers higher than the highest MODEL 39 I have ever seen or owned, however, this one has an " A " prefix, well into the 39-2 serial numbers but is a "true" MODEL 39.

Speculation of whether a special order or at S&W they found a hand full of 39s in the back of the vault or just another piece of hard proof that it "seems" S&W never threw anything away that they could sell ... and ... shipping / numbering inconsistencies.

There are only 2 others known exactly like this one. Those 2 are a consecutive set owned by another member. This one is another consecutive serial numbered to his 2.

Pretty neat, eh ?

When it arrives I will take more pictures but until then, enjoy.
Very nice example. I would think special order if there are only 3 with consecutive numbers. But only Roy Jinks probably can tell you.
Also... I would say that 3 consecutive S/Ns would be better than 2. Maybe you want to keep it, but maybe it's worth more to the holder of the other 2 s/n Model 39s? Or worth inquiring if someone wanted to sell 2? I am really not trying to start a war but if it were me I would at least ask the question.. either way really.. you buy two or he buys 1. That would be an awesome collectors display. I have 2 Air weight Centennials (Pre-model 42s) with s/ns just 1 number apart. I have looked for years now for that middle gun. If I could find it I know I would be attempting to purchase it.
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Old 08-09-2018, 10:37 PM
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I have 2 Air weight Centennials (Pre-model 42s) with s/ns just 1 number apart. I have looked for years now for that middle gun. If I could find it I know I would be attempting to purchase it.
Perhaps you haven't asked nice enough if someone has the missing link ?

Email me the SN you seek.
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Old 08-10-2018, 01:23 PM
Richard McMillan Richard McMillan is offline
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According to my notes, the Jack Webb Model 39 was on display at the Los Angeles U.S.O. On the death of Jack Webb the gun was picked up by the family, and from my source, had no interest in selling it.For those of you looking for special serial numbers try this one. Rock Island Auction (May 5&6,2002)Serial number 39, steel frame, maple grips, nickel finish.
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Old 08-10-2018, 02:52 PM
Richard McMillan Richard McMillan is offline
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The Hold on the update of the 39 Monograph is a lot of new information has come available. Mr, Scott Meadows has published U.S, Military Automatic Pistols 1945-2012, Which includes a lot of new information on the development of the Model 39s. I now have the early Pre 39 development pistol serial number X-107. All of which needs to be included.
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Old 08-10-2018, 05:29 PM
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According to my notes, the Jack Webb Model 39 was on display at the Los Angeles U.S.O. On the death of Jack Webb the gun was picked up by the family, and from my source, had no interest in selling it.For those of you looking for special serial numbers try this one. Rock Island Auction (May 5&6,2002)Serial number 39, steel frame, maple grips, nickel finish.
Richard, Pertaining to the 39 Steel frame, nickel finish, at the May 2002 auction ... is / was that one of yours at one time or currently ? thank you. Sal
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Old 08-10-2018, 10:39 PM
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The best thing about this post is to see all the members weigh in with the information they have and their willingness to share not only this information but the guns themselves. I am intrigued by Sal's pre 39 s/n 1021 and it's experimental extractor. I was able to look at this gun up close and personal during a visit to Sal in Florida. It is definitely one of a kind as is his steel frame double stack 39-2 s/n 62771. By all accounts, this gun shouldn't exist. When he showed me this gun at the 2017 Symposium, I couldn't put it down. I had the honor of meeting our own 39 Guru Richard McMillan at the 2018 symposium and was fascinated not only by his collection but his willingness to discuss them. He allowed some of us to hold his experimental prototypes s/n X104 & X142. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Someday I'll take a real close look at my series of 39's and note the differences in them. One thing that has remained consistent with S&W guns is they continued to manufacture pistols with minor variations well into the 439, 539 and 639 series. Guns in the those models have variations in trigger guards (round or square) , sights (wing or no wing), extractors (short or long 39-2 style). I can attest to that as I have at least one of each variation. This is certainly what makes collecting so interesting and sometimes confusing.

P.S. I heard a rumor that a pre 39 s/n 13 does exist. Perhaps Roy can enlighten us.
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Old 08-12-2018, 12:06 AM
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Talking Pre-39 #1130 shipped to Evaluators, LTD in Quanatico, VA

I've owned serial number 1130 for over 20 years. When I purchased it, it was accompanied by the correct box, but no papers , ... and ... a very old letter from S&W, probably in the beginning when Roy started responding to the historical inquiries in the 1970s or shortly thereafter.

The letter indicates the serial number and a short description with the ship date of November 8, 1955 but makes no mention of "to whom" it had been shipped.

Excellent S&WHF research (all thanks to Bill Cross) shows it shipped to Evaluators LTD. in Quantico, VA. I only learned this today.

While the primary sales and services provided by Evaluators was for military personnel, and it is likely it had been sold to someone in the military, that is not a guarantee it had (in fact) been sold to a US Serviceman, but it sure raises the probability.

I cleaned it once, over 20 years ago, then packed it away for long term storage. I never actually "examined" it. I will now, just to see if there are any unique markings under the stocks or underside of slide, etc.

What I understand about Evaluators, LTD is they catered mainly to the military and FBI and were safety oriented. Every firearm they sold was completely examined for safe function, regardless that it was brand new at the time. I have yet to see this in writing anywhere but SOMEWHERE I did see an enclosure slip, I believe it was on an old Combat Masterpiece, that was inserted in the box of that gun from Evaluators, which claimed something similar.

Any factual comments on Evaluators, LTD is appreciated.

I've been running 3 letter requests per week for the past month or so, hoping I come up with at least ONE, General Officer's pistol.

This is the closest I've come to a G.O. pistol, and, IT "IS" CLOSE but "NO CIGAR".
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Old 08-13-2018, 12:20 AM
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Question Pre production SN 13 fiction or myth ?

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P.S. I heard a rumor that a pre 39 s/n 13 does exist. Perhaps Roy can enlighten us.
The ledger sheet Roy provided to the members was stated to be pre-issue 9mm autos that were thought (or "rumored") to be given out as promotional gifts. Roy produced a ledger page which was in response to a question I posed, which was stated to represent all of the pre-issue promotional SNs except Jack Webb's #714.

Upon closer examination of that ledger sheet, the several listed all had ... what appeared to be ... ship dates and regular serial numbers withing the normal SN range. Dates ranging from 1950s to 1970s.

I discussed this with Kevin Williams and is currently under review but seems to be exactly as it describes, just 9mms, within the normal serial number range, that have some special significance or went to special S&W customers.

And .... the pre-production 9mm SN: #13 that was supposed to be Roy Jinks', seems to actually be a special order 39-2 SN: 000013 delivered to Roy on October 17, 1975, currently in Richard McMillan's collection, and not a pre-production 9mm or production issue pre-39.

I corresponded with Richard McMillan who added a valid point of conjecture to that Pre-39 SN: 13 story (rumor). Richard offered for consideration that Roy did not work for S&W in 1955 (I actually though he had) when it would have been ordered, commissioned or authorized, Roy began working for S&W years later and not in a higher ranking position until a few years more. (perhaps not exact words but very similar)

This is just my own speculation, however, it seems the only verified serial numbers lower than 1001 is Jack Webb's SN: 714, plus any of the surviving experimental and development (R&D) models X-serial numbers.

1001 through 1020, included all / some or promotional models with some of those being shipped to the U.S. Military.
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Old 08-13-2018, 02:02 PM
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Sal,
Thanks for the fact finding. Sounds like another rumor can be put to bed. Richard McMillan had the model 39-2 serial # 0013 at the Reno show and noted it had previously belonged to Roy Jinks.
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Old 08-13-2018, 06:36 PM
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Sal,
Thanks for the fact finding. Sounds like another rumor can be put to bed. Richard McMillan had the model 39-2 serial # 0013 at the Reno show and noted it had previously belonged to Roy Jinks.
I could be wrong but this story about the pre-issue 9mms (serial numbered at 1000 and under, excluding R&D and experimental X prefix guns) has been around so long and (until recently) resurrected only sporadically. Now, with the aid of the internet, has grown wings and a turbo.

Who knows where it started, what facts (if any) were originally accumulated to support it, who enhanced it as it came down through the years and how many variations this story took ?

I believe the only way to prove ANYTHING is to support it with physical evidence. In this matter, either S&W records and or one of the pre-issue serial numbered pistols in the "flesh" (metal). So far of any serial number of 1000 or lower, seems 714 to Jack Webb is the only provable exemplar.

Additionally, my gut instinct tells me ... if Mac doesn't own one, Kevin hasn't seen one, and, no other 39 collector has one, they likely do not exist. But finding S&Ws that are not supposed to exist is what we live for, so keep trying to prove my theory incorrect. However, until an authenticated exemplar surfaces (other than 714) I think it is just one of many S&W fairy tales flying around out there in hyperspace.
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