Need advice on S&W .45acp trade


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Gordon
July 29, 2003, 10:26 PM
I need some advice on this one guys! An OLD friend just showed me a 4" barreled S&W .45acp with an extractor shroud and fixed sights. It has the old pre magna stocks. The front half moon sight has been carefully filed into flat post and rear sight groove squared . I fired a couple cylinders of ball at my house and sights are nicely registered at 50 feet. The gun is in 85% . He wants to trade for a 9mm Tok I have PLUS a baby Browning .25 that is nice BUT has somebodies name on slide. I think this is a 1950 Army model . Should I do it? I have a Colt but not a Smith big frame .45acp (sold the 1955 target:(

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Trumpet
July 29, 2003, 10:31 PM
You fired a couple cylinders of ball AT YOUR HOUSE?!?!?! :what: Have fun explaining that one to the wife.....:D


Rich

Gordon
July 29, 2003, 10:41 PM
I have a rural ranch(small, but 1000 feet from nearest neighbor AND it's legal on my range but I don't usually shoot noisy stuff alot) NOW HELP guys am I screwing myself on deal?:confused:

Preacherman
July 29, 2003, 11:53 PM
Personally, I'd jump at the trade. I think (judging by the prices available in this area) that the values on either side are comparable. However, if there is any sentimental value attached to the Tokarev or Browning, that might influence your decision.

Old Fuff
July 30, 2003, 09:05 AM
Something here doesn't add up ....

You say the revolver in question is a .45 ACP, had a 4" barrel with fixed sights and large underlug, and has "pre-Magna" grips.

Smith & Wesson never made such a gun ....

Or at least they didn't catalog it.

During the Great Depression the company was very hard up, as were all gun manufacturers at that time. Consequently if the customer had the money they'd build just about anything they wanted.

Before going any further you need to determine exactlly what is this gun. Did S&W build it, or is it a custom gunsmith's job (probably made from a .38/44 Heavy Duty rebuilt into a .45). The answer could make a BIG difference in it's value vs. a trade.

Gordon
July 30, 2003, 10:50 AM
I think this is a 1950 model, what were they like? Was 4 or 5" barrel an option in .45acp?

Old Fuff
July 30, 2003, 11:14 AM
The 1950 model was a post-World War Two update of the 1917 model. The changes included:

* The new post-World War Two "short action."

* The hammer block developed during World War Two.

* Magna Grips.

Other then that they were similar to a model 1917, without the lanyard ring.

.45 ACP / 6 shot / 5 1/2" barrel with small underlug (did not shroud ejector rod) / Blue finish / Fixed sights with 1/2 moon front blade /Magna stocks.

Old Fuff
July 30, 2003, 11:18 AM
A thought: You aren't discussing a 1950 TARGET MODEL are you? That would have the shrouded underlug, a 6 1/2" barrel (could have been shortened to 4 inches), and adjustable sights, with Magna or Target stocks.

Mike Irwin
July 30, 2003, 11:52 AM
Going to need a serial number, Gordon.

That's the only way to accurately put a date, and possible model number, to this particular gun.

The serial number will be found on the butt of the grip.

Old Fuff
July 30, 2003, 03:26 PM
Mike is right, but that won't entirely solve the problem, because while it will indicate WHEN the gun was made within a certain time frame, it won't tell us WHAT model it is. At this point I strongly suspect that it is:

(1) A .45 conversion made on a pre-World War Two .38/45 Heavy Duty model. The barrel could have rebored and rifled to .45 specifications, or the barrel could have been relined. Less likely, the same conversion could have been made on a model 1926 Military .44 Special with a 4" barrel. In either case the cylinder would be replaced with one for a 1917 model.

(2) It was originally made by Smith & Wesson as a special order gun.

The only way too know for sure is to take a photograph, and send it with a letter describing the gun and its serial number to S&W's historian, Roy Jinks with a $30.00 check. That will buy you a letter from the company fully describing the gun as it left the factory.

Mike Irwin
July 30, 2003, 04:14 PM
"Mike is right, but that won't entirely solve the problem, because while it will indicate WHEN the gun was made within a certain time frame, it won't tell us WHAT model it is."

No, it won't tell us what it is, Fluff, but it can definitively tell us what it is NOT, and that can be as important in trying to pin down what it is.

If its got a serial number from the WW I-era 1917 series, then we know it's not a Model of 1950, nor is it a revamped. 38-44.

If it's in the triple lock serial number series, then it's had multiple revamps.

I'm away from my books, but didn't the 1926 commercial variant have a shrouded ejector rod?

Old Fuff
July 30, 2003, 08:18 PM
Mike Erwin:

Yes, the model 1926 .44 Special did have a shrouded ejector housing, it sometimes came with a 4” barrel and had a “half-moon” front sight. The same could be said about the .38/44 Heavy Duty.

The following is a description of what Gordon says the gun he’s interested in is:

>>An OLD friend just showed me a 4" barreled S&W .45acp with an extractor shroud and fixed sights. It has the old pre magna stocks. The front half moon sight has been carefully filed into flat post and rear sight groove squared . <<

Try as I may I can’t see the above as a model 1917 or 1950 Military. They had small, non-shrouded barrel lugs and the only barrel length offered was 5 ½ inches – at least as a cataloged model.

We both know enough to say, “never say never” before all the facts are clear. And you are right, knowing the serial number would help. Like you, I await more information, and maybe a picture.

Last but not least, this could be some sort of gunsmith's rebuild using a frame assembly from one period, and a barrel/cylinder combination from another. Either a .38 or .44 barrel could habe been rebored or lined and matched with a 1917 cylinder. And I can't count out the possibility that S&W made a "special order" gun. This is why we have Roy Jinks.

Mike Irwin
July 30, 2003, 11:08 PM
"Mike Erwin"

Sorry, don't know him. :)

And yes, I'm figuring that it is some sort of rebuild/rework.

None of the pertinent models from the apparent time frame seem to fit the information given.

Gordon
July 31, 2003, 10:55 AM
Thanks, I'm getting it back for serial #. I don't think it has been converted. It may have a 5(1/2) barrel. I HAVE the 1926 model .44 spl with a 4 " barrel and it is shorter come to think of it!

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