Manufacture date of a K-38?


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StephenT
September 13, 2005, 02:03 PM
My S&W K-38 has finally arrived today, so I rushed to pick it up from my FFL. What I received was a mint condition 6" masterpiece, with the extra wide trigger and hammer spur. No gun model number is listed, but the serial is 827XX. Engraved on the other side, it says MADE IN U.S.A. (No Spanish Marcas Registradas as they do nowadays). Any ideas as to the approximate date of manufacture of this very nice target 38? Thanks.

PS. What is the exact designation of this gun? Is it referred to as a pre-Model 14?

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jacobtowne
September 13, 2005, 02:10 PM
According to my book, if it has a K prefix SN, it was made in 1949.
JT

StephenT
September 13, 2005, 04:01 PM
Thanks for the info. It looks like I've netted an early one for a decent price too.

BluesBear
September 14, 2005, 06:17 AM
Yes it's a "pre-14"

Which barrel do you have?

The K-38 Target Masterppiece was introduced in 1947.
It had a narrow rid with 1/8" or 1/10" Patridge front sight.
It had a rollmark on the right side that said 38 S&W Special CTG
The left side rollmark simply said Smith & Wesson

Sometime in 1949 (your gun is late 1949 production) they changed to a heavy barrel to match the K-22 and K-32.

The value of your gun will be determined by which barrel it has.






Oh yeah by the way,

WE NEED PICTURES!

StephenT
September 14, 2005, 05:13 PM
Thanks Bluesbear, mine has the 6 inch slim barrel with a white dotted partridge front sight (see attachment). I've been looking for one with the 8 3/8 inch barrel, but they seem to be rather scarce. The rollmarks are as described. Very nice revolver, which may become my favorite 38 revolver if it turns out to the tack driver I expect it to be. I doubt any of the Houston stores would have sold a mint K-38 target masterpiece for less than $450, but I managed to get it for $271 total from auction arms.

Scoupe
September 14, 2005, 09:14 PM
Sweet looking wheel gun there! And a GREAT price.

BTW, I believe Marcas Registradas is Latin, the mother of Spanish, and all romance languages.

BluesBear
September 14, 2005, 11:00 PM
$271!!!

Yikes! They almost gave it away.

Now all you need to do is find a set of original Magna diamond grips.


The 8 3/8" wasn't offered until 1959.

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