WTK: age of my S&W model 1917


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TooTech
July 6, 2005, 12:17 AM
I recently acquired a S&W revolver, chambered for .45 ACP in moon clips. Not a triple-lock, I'm guessing a second-model hand ejector.

On the butt and cylinder are the numbers 83XXX. The barrel is numbered 85XXX. The XXX portions match, only the "thousands" digit is different! The finish wear on the frame and barrel are very similar. I'm betting someone was having a tough day at the office and that the barrel is original - that little "3" and that little "5" are very similar in appearance.

There are numbers on the crane and the frame recess the crane fits into, these numbers match each other, although they are different than the number on the butt, etc.

The barrel has the lettering "S&W DA 45" on the side, and two lines on the top of the barrel: "Smith & Wesson Springfield Mass USA", "Patented Dec 17 1901 Feb 5 1905 Sep 14 1909". Along with the serial number the butt is lettered "US Army model 1917".

There are no markings to indicate that this is a former military gun. The finish is bright blue and in about 80-85% condition, the pattern of the wear indicates holster carry. Barrel length is 5.5 inches, sights are fixed. Grips are wooden with checkering and silver S&W medallions. There is a number inside on only one of the grips, this number does not match any other numbers.

There is a hole in the butt for a lanyard loop, that is missing. The lanyard loop retaining pin is still in the frame.

Can anyone tell me the approximate age of the revolver, and any other pertinent facts?

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Dr.Who
July 6, 2005, 12:57 AM
I do know if the grips you have are original, if so then it is a non-military gun. A military piece has smooth grips, not checkered as yours. I have a military version that is 29,000 earlier than yours and had been age to 1918. Just a guess, maybe yours is around 1920. Not sure, someone will confirm...

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