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S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 All 5-Screw & Vintage 4-Screw SWING-OUT Cylinder REVOLVERS, and the 35 Autos and 32 Autos


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Old 02-16-2024, 09:13 AM
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Default 455 without caliber punched on the barrel

Smith & Wesson Hand Ejector 455 without caliber punched on the barrel

Good morning,
I found this beautiful 455 to buy, with its holster, it doesn't have the caliber printed on the barrel. I don't know why, Is it regular?
I don't know the military proofs marked on the gun, what do they tell us?
I only saw the photos, it doesn't seem reblueing to me, what is your opinion The request is reasonable 1K, i'd like to buy it but only if it's all regular, stamping, blueing etc.etc.
Thanks
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:15 AM
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:16 AM
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:19 AM
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You have a British service revolver, produced for the British Government. This thread will likely be of interest:

.455 British Svc Revolver Research Thread
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:20 AM
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:29 AM
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Old 02-16-2024, 10:25 AM
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That is a beautiful example of a .455 British Service Revolver, Marcello. All the proofs and inspection stamps look legitimate to me. The lack of a caliber stamp is immaterial as some guns did not receive them. The finish appears to be original. Even more important is it does not appear to have been modified to chamber a different cartridge as so many of these are here in the U.S. It is priced right. I hope you get it before it gets away!
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Old 02-16-2024, 10:30 AM
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What Guy said! Buy it.

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Old 02-16-2024, 10:52 AM
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Love the gun and the holster.
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Old 02-16-2024, 11:05 AM
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The Crossed Pennants/Flags mark on the frame bbl ring and rear face of the cylinder is the British Military Proof mark.

The grouping of marks on the LH side of the frame at the knuckle are
the British inspection and Property markings
BroadArrow ....Brit Property Marking
Crown/Letter-Number/E...Enfield Arsenal Inspectors mark
II.....Mark II revolver designation


The revolver was also Proofed for commercial/civilian sale/use at the London Proof House at some point.
That proof mark is on the bottom of the bbl next to the Bbl Ser#.
It is the London Proof 'Nitro Proof Mark' (smokeless powder proof).

This London Nitro Proof likely done as the revolver went into Peacetime custody , perhaps of it's original issue recipient during WW1.
That the London Proof Hs mark is placed so discreetly in it's place under the bbl and cannot be seen unless the cylinder is opened says something about the owner who submitted the gun for the Proofing at the time IMO.
No 'Sold from Service' mark either which is common on these X-Military revolvers.
Though not every one of them has the S^S marking done to them.
Normally, the Proof Hs would do their normal job and the required Proof mark stamps would be hand stamped on the Bbl, Frame and the Cylinder in obvious areas where they can be seen when looking at the gun.
No attempt to 'hide' them.
Plus there are quite a few other proof marks that were supposed to be placed along with the Nitro Proof mark, they have been left off.
The 'View Proof' and depending on when it was done, a cartridge case length and service pressure in English tonnes marking (1955 and after).

Most of the Proofing for commercial & civilian sale was done by the Birmingham Proof HS.
The use of the London P/Hs is not unkn for this but it is not seen all that often.
There is a bit of pride value in having the London mark as opposed to a Birmingham (Brum') marking on your firearm if you were a 'somebody' at the time.
I suspect so as not to disfigure the revolver and it's beautiful finish.
But it must have been someone special or someone with a 'connection' to be able to get that done that way.

Beautiful revolver, great condition. The holster is a very nice piece also. I believe the holster is considered an Commissioned Officers holster as it has a full flap.
Non-Commissioned Officrs had about the same design but were without the Flap. Sometimes called a Bucket Holster.
That's how I understand it, but I could be wrong about it all.
Nicely marked however..
The Non-Commisioned
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Old 02-16-2024, 01:39 PM
Hondo44 Hondo44 is offline
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Well you’ve certainly found another prize!

The correct original holsters are awfully rare and hardly ever seen.

The caliber roll mark on the barrel is found on about 75% of these revolvers. So a missing caliber mark is not unusual. We can only speculate why but the most likely is the expediency of war time production. Roll mark dies wear out and break. They would not slow production waiting for replacement dies to arrive.

My thread below is for documenting the roll markings use:

.455 British Svc Revolver Research Thread[/QUOTE]
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:32 PM
Hondo44 Hondo44 is offline
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More thoughts:

The earliest BSR revolvers were .44 Triple locks factory converted to 455, completed and shipped ASAP as a stopgap measure when the war broke out. None of the those are caliber roll marked.
The next batch was the Triple locks made in 455, still no caliber roll mark.

Then came the 455 2nd models not roll marked until around #27000. As production smoothed out and really got going it appears caliber marking was routine.

Unmarked groups of guns after that seem to be occasional and more likely in my opinion from worn/broken dies or equipment problems.
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Last edited by Hondo44; 02-17-2024 at 12:46 AM.
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