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  #51  
Old 09-09-2020, 02:26 PM
scoobysnacker scoobysnacker is online now
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In discussing the Value Line series, I think it's worth noting that the 915 doesn't truly fit into that group. It, alone, appears to be a no-frills, working-man's 3rd Gen.
The "value" bits are: aluminum frame, carbon steel slide instead of stainless, less aesthetics machining, non-ambi safety. I have one and a 5906 (with round trigger guard and novak sights), and it seems that literally everything can interchange and mix/match.

The actual Value Line guns are NOT interchangeable with their 3rd Gen counterparts, from what I can see.
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  #52  
Old 09-09-2020, 04:04 PM
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GaryS GaryS is offline
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I think of the 915 as the "Value Line" equivalent of the 5904. Everything else you note is typical of the early Value Line guns. When the 910 came along, S&W deleted the locking lug on the top of the barrel along with the slot on the underside of the frame. That carried through to the later CS9. I don't know if the 908 or 909 had that also.

I have three Value Line 9mm slides. I bought them mostly for the left side only safety.

Two of them are for 4 inch barrels. One has the slot in it for the lugged barrel one doesn't. The other is for 3.5 inch barrels and has no slot.

I don't know which specific guns they were for.

If the 915 has a plastic magazine release and non reusable button, it's a Value line gun.

As time went on, S&W made more engineering changes to the Value Line guns in an attempt to make them price competitive with Glock. I don't know that it worked all that well, but it did get us the CS guns, so there's that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scoobysnacker View Post
In discussing the Value Line series, I think it's worth noting that the 915 doesn't truly fit into that group. It, alone, appears to be a no-frills, working-man's 3rd Gen.
The "value" bits are: aluminum frame, carbon steel slide instead of stainless, less aesthetics machining, non-ambi safety. I have one and a 5906 (with round trigger guard and novak sights), and it seems that literally everything can interchange and mix/match.

The actual Value Line guns are NOT interchangeable with their 3rd Gen counterparts, from what I can see.
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  #53  
Old 09-09-2020, 04:59 PM
JohnHL JohnHL is offline
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Originally Posted by GaryS View Post
I think of the 915 as the "Value Line" equivalent of the 5904. Everything else you note is typical of the early Value Line guns. When the 910 came along, S&W deleted the locking lug on the top of the barrel along with the slot on the underside of the frame. That carried through to the later CS9. I don't know if the 908 or 909 had that also.

I have three Value Line 9mm slides. I bought them mostly for the left side only safety.

Two of them are for 4 inch barrels. One has the slot in it for the lugged barrel one doesn't. The other is for 3.5 inch barrels and has no slot.

I don't know which specific guns they were for.

If the 915 has a plastic magazine release and non reusable button, it's a Value line gun.

As time went on, S&W made more engineering changes to the Value Line guns in an attempt to make them price competitive with Glock. I don't know that it worked all that well, but it did get us the CS guns, so there's that.
Gary, the 910, 909, 908, and CS9 all share the same features (or lack thereof) including lugless barrels (910 and 909 share the same part number), no accommodation for barrel lug in slide, no front rails in slide or on frame, b(g)locky slide shape, plastic mag release button, and (with the exception of later production CS9 models) plastic sights.

On the 915, EVERY part will interchange with a non-Novak rear sight 5903, 5904, and 5906, including ALL of the mag release components.

I love my CS9 and CS40/45, but it certainly would NOT have offended my delicate aesthetic sensibilities had S&W chosen to design them with the more traditional parts and contours that most on this Forum prefer.

What a couple of sexy little pocket rockets those would have been.

John

Last edited by JohnHL; 09-09-2020 at 05:02 PM.
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  #54  
Old 09-09-2020, 06:59 PM
Green Frog Green Frog is offline
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Default Correct omission

Is there a single stack equivalent In the “Value Series” to the double stack 915? I’m guessing no, but the more I learn, “the confuseder I become!”

Also does anybody have serial number or date ranges for changes in the 915 like steel vs plastic parts or wide vs narrow barrel hoods (extensions?)

I’m getting the idea now that the 915 was to the 5906 in semi-autos as the Model 28 was to the Model 27 in revolvers... does that sound about right?

Froggie

PS you caught me John! Correction underlined.

Last edited by Green Frog; 09-10-2020 at 07:16 AM.
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  #55  
Old 09-10-2020, 01:19 AM
JohnHL JohnHL is offline
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Originally Posted by Green Frog View Post
Is there a single stack equivalent In the “Value Series” to the double stack 915? I’m guessing no, but the more I learn, “the confuseder I become!”
The model 909 was the full size (4" barrel/8 rd. mag) single stack equivalent to the Value Line, double stack model 910 (the 910 being part of the 2nd and more austere economy series).

The models 915 (9mm) and 411 (40 s&w) were both full size (4" barrel/15 and 11 rd mags, respectively hence the names) and were the only semi-automatic pistols of their 1st (and less austere) economy series.

There were no single stack equivalents in the 915/411 series, but there were a couple of revolvers, as I recall.

Quote:
Also does anybody have serial number or date ranges for changes in the 915 like steel vs plastic parts or wide vs narrow barrel hoods (extensions?)
The 915/411 debuted in 1992 and by late 1993/early 1994, the wide hood barrels began to show up on Smith & Wessons.

Quote:
I’m getting the idea now that the 915 was to the 5906 in semi-autos as the Model 28 was to the Model in revolvers... does that sound about right?

Froggie
If you mean the Model 27, then yeah, sort of...

S&W did have a revolver or two that they paired with the 915/411 at the time of their debut with the same mission, to provide a quality gun with a few less frills.

Unfortunately, I can't recall the model numbers at this time.

John
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  #56  
Old 09-10-2020, 07:07 AM
rosewood rosewood is offline
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Originally Posted by lhump1961 View Post
One more comment about 3rd gens. I have had them for many years and cannot recall any chronic issues of any kind being reported relating to reliability and durability. Any gun can fail but is it the exception or the rule? It has been my personal experience that failures in 3rd gens is rare and I have never had any of mine fail in any way...at all.

I do recall a TSW3953 railed gun (rail removed) that my son-in-law purchased for a song a few years ago that functioned fine in slow fire but failed under rapid fire. This gun had holster wear along with nicks and scratches so who knows what the previous owner(s) may have done to it's internals trying to make it "better". The trigger would not reliably reengage if fired fast so I think someone messed with it. Sent it back to Smith and they fixed it (replaced draw bar and other parts) at no charge and it has been a champ since then.
Of 7 I own and 2 others family members have/had, I only have one that has ever done anything out of order. I purchased a 4013 single stack last year and stupid thing randomly throws the last round out of the mag instead of chambering. Fires the first 7 rounds flawlessly. It does it with 5 different mags that don't seem to have the issue in the 4053. I have tried spring replacement and of course mags, no luck thus far. Debating on whether I want to send to the mothership and see if they can get it to act up and figure it out.

Rosewood
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  #57  
Old 09-10-2020, 11:19 PM
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grcoffman104 grcoffman104 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Frog View Post
It sounds as though you are saying that a plastic disconnector may be expected to function properly (and of course smoothly) with no fitting, while a steel one might require stoning to achieve the same level of performance. Is this correct?

Also, would you care to comment on life expectancy of the plastic disconnector? While I have never heard of disconnectors in S&W semi-autos wearing out or breaking, there have been several reports of breakage of the plastic ones.

Froggie
The natural “ slickness “ of the plastic one to me seems to equal the metal one. I stone only to smooth the surface of the metal one. It normally dropped in with no fitting needed. I have been shooting and working on thirdgens since the 80s, and both seem equal in their contribution to the action. I’ve only seen one broken one in 90 ish guns I’ve been inside 0f

Last edited by grcoffman104; 09-10-2020 at 11:21 PM. Reason: Addition
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Old 09-11-2020, 11:02 AM
Green Frog Green Frog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryS View Post
I think of the 915 as the "Value Line" equivalent of the 5904. Everything else you note is typical of the early Value Line guns. When the 910 came along, S&W deleted the locking lug on the top of the barrel along with the slot on the underside of the frame. That carried through to the later CS9. I don't know if the 908 or 909 had that also.

I have three Value Line 9mm slides. I bought them mostly for the left side only safety.

Two of them are for 4 inch barrels. One has the slot in it for the lugged barrel one doesn't. The other is for 3.5 inch barrels and has no slot.

I don't know which specific guns they were for.

If the 915 has a plastic magazine release and non reusable button, it's a Value line gun.

As time went on, S&W made more engineering changes to the Value Line guns in an attempt to make them price competitive with Glock. I don't know that it worked all that well, but it did get us the CS guns, so there's that.
In the slide cut for a locking lug, how wide is the barrel extension at the chamber? I have two 915 slides, one with a narrow (1/4”) hood, the other with a wider (3/16”+) hood. Otherwise they seem pretty much identical.

Froggie
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