Calling Rossi experts


August 12, 2006, 03:39 PM
I picked up a Rossi today that I thought was a 68, but closer examination of the frame marking indicates either M685 or M585, although neither is particularly clear. It looks like an S&W 36 in every detail except the logo on the grips

Might this be a product improved M68? Does anyone have any idea when something like this might have been made. The importer is INTERARMS of Alexandria, Virginia which I believe has been out of business for a number of years (if that helps.)

I'd be interested in anyone's additional information or opinions on this piece.

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August 12, 2006, 04:13 PM
I've got a 68 from the early 80s, got it in 81, and it has a notch blade rear sight with screws on either side, can adjust for windage. My later M88 was a stainless 68, but looked like your gun with sight in the top strap. I got it around 1990 or so. It was an interarms imported gun. I'm thinkin' your gun may be mid 90s, but I don't really know for sure. It's the spittin' image of a model 68, though.

My little M68 is very tight, perfectly timed, and has a really unusually good DA for a Rossi. It ain't Smith quality, but it's better than I had on the M88 which was a little rougher. Maybe the stainless construction of that gun, but I also had lots of tooling marks on the hammer on that gun where my earlier M68 is much better finished, no tooling marks. My older gun compares favorably to any little .38 J frame gun. It has the 3" barrel which I like, too.

That's all I have to offer. Sorry, but I ain't really a Rossi expert, just owned five of their handguns at one time or another and liked 'em all. Great little guns for the money. Oh, BTW, your front sight resembles the later M88 also. The sight on my earlier M68 is more abrupt, not as long down the barrel. The 88 looked just like that. Here's my 68 so you can see what I mean about the sights, the blade at the rear and the shorter front sight. Like I say, my cerca 1990 M88 looked just like yours only in stainless.

August 12, 2006, 06:16 PM
I've got an M885 that I sort of inherited from my dad. He acquired it in the early '90s from an old man who lived down the street from him. I have no clue when the old man got it.

The gun seems to be very well put together. As MCgunner alluded to, it seems to be unusually better built than a lot of Rossi wheelguns you see. ( (

August 13, 2006, 07:57 AM
Thanks for the info. The comparisons are very helpful. I'm still not sure what it is, but it's a good little snub nose.

August 13, 2006, 12:39 PM
You know, I've been thinkin' this one over, and I believe the 885 succeeded the m88, and similar the 685. I still ain't sure, but I seem to remember seeing these new model numbers in Shotgun News Ads in the mid 90s. I'm pretty sure it's not older than my M68, though.

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