Trying to Identify a S&W 38 SPL CTG


June 24, 2008, 11:59 AM
Hello everyone, I have been lurking and reading for a while now...thought I would try and get some info on this pistol my cousin just bought...It is nickel-plated .38 SPL CTG...I believe the serial # was 196138 it has a C stamped into it, and it also has a star stamped into it..It also says Marcas Registradas I think...I was just curious about it...we took it with us to a gun show last weekend, but nobody wanted to give us much info on it, they just wanted to buy it...but would not give us an idea what it was worth either...any help would be greatly appreciated..Thanks


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June 24, 2008, 02:52 PM
It is not a .38 SPL CTG. model.

That is the caliber it is chambered for.
IE: S&W .38 Special Cartridge.

The C serial # prefix indicates it is a K-frame fixed sight revolver, but we really need more info to pin it down further.


June 24, 2008, 03:44 PM

Ok lets see, it is double action, 4" barrel I believe, nickel-plated, wood grips, fixed sights, 6 shot, square grip i believe that enough info, or is there more I am missing...also there is a star imprinted, I think it was on the inside there, when you opened the cylinder...thanks for the info


Jim Watson
June 24, 2008, 03:49 PM
It is a Military and Police model, which became the Model 10 in 1957. Somebody will be along shortly to look up the serial number and tell you which minor variation it is and when it was made.

The star stamp means that at some time or another, it was returned to Smith & Wesson to be worked on. It might have had mechanical repair, it might have been nickel plated from blue (what S&W used to call a "change of finish") or it might have been re-plated to improve the appearance of worn nickel.

June 24, 2008, 04:36 PM
If the S/N on the butt is "C 196138" It would date to about 1949 or 1950. Should have a round 1/2 moon front sight instead of a ramp, correct? Jim is correct about the star - they shipped few guns in this period that were nickel, so it was likely re-nickeled later. This can be confirmed by removing the grips and looking at the butt - there should be either an "N" or "B" stamped there indicating how it left the factory (nickel or blue). That it was a factory job is a bonus - quality usually higher than the average aftermarket.

If the grips are original (s/n will match inside the right grip - should be magna-type grips with medallions), and combined with the re-finish, the value as a collector isn't remarkable. The shooter value of it may be $250 to $300 if it's in really nice shape. If you do want a value to sell it, send me a private email and photo if you can and I can try to help more.

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