May 17, 2007, 10:28 PM
I have a Smith revolver serial 891877 on the barrel, cylinder and butt plate. It has the number 8 over the numbers 31200 on the frame under the crane. On the left side of the barrel is SMITH & WESSON. On the right side of the barrel is * 38 S & W CTG * in the center of the barrel
ane just below it is the word SPECIAL. The word SPECIAL looks as though it was added later. It shoots .38 Special rounds through a 4-inch barrel. At the top of the grip behind the cylinder release is a faint marking that says
GERMANY backwards as in a mirror image. It was nickel plated originally but is flaking badly now. It shoots very accurate and is tight. What model revolver do I have?
May 17, 2007, 10:43 PM
I would wager that a measurement from the cylinder face to the muzzle would reveal a barrel of five inches. There should be a V prefix, perhaps far away from the serial, on the butt of the revolver. If so, you have a Smith & Wesson 38/200, also known as a K-200 or British Victory model. They were originally in .38S&W, but many were converted albeit poorly, to .38 special to better appeal to the US market when they were re-imported. The nickel plating is not original if your revolver is a 38/200. It is worth it's intrinsic value as a revolver. Historic and collector value is gone with the original finish.
May 17, 2007, 11:03 PM
You are correct. I meant to say 5-inch barrel. Thanks for the reply. I checked and there is no V anywhere on the butt or anywhere else.
May 17, 2007, 11:37 PM
Ok, it sounds as if you have an early K-200, or 38/200. These revolvers were sold to the Brits prior to the US entering into WWII. Technically, it is a M&P, Model of 1905 fourth change, chambered in .38S&W, which was preferred by the Brits. As I said, many were rechambered prior to re-importation to make them more attractive to US shooters. The M&P is a precursor to the Model 10. The nickel finish would not be original. The original finishes for these revolvers were polished blue, sandblast blue, or "Black Magic".
May 18, 2007, 12:57 PM
Thanks again, Xavier, for the info. The internet is wonderful for information. People like you are responsible for educating us amateurs on guns, etc.
May 19, 2007, 12:53 PM
The correct caliber is the .38 S&W NOT THE .38 Special. Many of these guns were butchered by reaming them for the longer (but smaller in diameter) Special cartridge. Shooting them causes the cases to swell and split. If you shoot the gun stick with the proper ammo (which is pricey and hard to find and that's why they hacked them up to accept the Special ammo).