Purchasing S&W mod. 10-6: help


May 2, 2009, 01:55 PM
I've been looking for a revolver for my folks. They want something for HD, but also small enough to wear on them when working outside. They aren't "gunnies" at all (Dad does dispatch squirrels & rabbits with a single shot 12 ga., but that's the extent of it), so I've been keeping an eye open for a revolver in the .38 class. I haven't seen much in the price range they want to spend.

Today, my neighbor mentioned he has a S&W .38 for sale. It is a model 10-6, with very good bluing except for the last 1" of muzzle. Apparently he inherited it from his police officer uncle's estate. It has almost no "turn line", lock-up and timing appear good, and rifling is nice & sharp although I only examined it briefly and I have 0 experience with revolvers. I didn't check for end shake or cylinder-barrel gap, but I will next time I handle it. It is wearing Hogue grips; no box, original grips, etc. He is asking $300.

The questions are:

1)What is a fair price for a mechanically perfect, cosmetically very good 10-6 in today's market? I find lots of listings from a couple years ago around $200-$250, but haven't seen anything recently for under $300-$400.

2)What else should I look for when I get a chance to inspect it a little more?

Please help an auto-loader guy out; help me buy this one, and maybe I'll get hooked!

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May 2, 2009, 02:07 PM
I paid $300 for a 10-5 a few weeks back, with Pachmayr grips and no box, in similar condition.

I don't regret it at all. :)

I did go on the S&W site and buy a set of these the other day.


That oversized Pachmayr grip is kinda ugly and the tapered 4" barrel isn't heavy enough to really warrant the fat target grips. OTOH they do cover the whole grip frame all around, to prevent any wear. I just wanted a pair of traditional service grips, too.:)

May 2, 2009, 06:23 PM
$300.00 is fair and reasonable, and or is an attractive-enough price, for a decent used S & W Model 10...and a 10-6 is still all forgings and high quality Steels with no 'powder-metal' or other compromise.

I'd say it sounds like a very good candidate...and a good-enough deal.

They are very good Guns, very durable, very good quality.

Some were 4 inch Heavy Barrel Models, others, Pencil Barrels of various lengths.

One could say, the Bull Barrel, or Heavy Barrel Models have the advantage of a little more weight, and balance Muzzle wise, for absorbing recoil...

If Timing and Lock-up seem good, Bore seems clean and bright...action feels 'sooth' in double-action and single...then all should be well.

Probably, it should be partially dismantled, side-plate and Cylinder taken off anyway, for a good cleaning, and Grease-Oiling of all moving Parts...since typically this has been overlooked by prior owners/users.

l v

May 2, 2009, 06:33 PM
Thanks for the replies. I should have added before that this is a 4" heavy barreled model. Part of what attracts me to it is that it isn't a snubbie.

May 2, 2009, 07:17 PM

That seems like a fair price to me; I don't see many heavy barrel Model 10s' around these parts. I always liked them as they seemed to balance in my hand better than the pencil barrel models.

David E
May 2, 2009, 08:48 PM

I prefer the open back Pachmayer "Professional" grips, but whatever works for your folks.


May 3, 2009, 12:13 AM
Well, I just bought a Model 64-6 which is basically a 10 in stainless. It's in VG condition and was a police gun, too. It was priced at $229.95 at J&G Sales.

Click here (http://www.jgsales.com/product_info.php/smith-wesson/revolver/p/smith-wesson-model-64-38spl-4in-stainless%2C-square-butt-w-bobbed-hammer-very-good-condition/cPath/16_211_431/products_id/3103)

Might be worth it to pay a local FFL the $20 or so to receive it for you. The stainless gun may be a better choice if your folks may not maintain it like you might.

May 3, 2009, 05:09 AM
I recently bought a like new 10-5 for $400 and a slightly worn 10-7 for $279...so $300 is well in line.

May 3, 2009, 03:45 PM
Until fairly recently S&W model 10s were going for $200-250, but in the last year or so prices have been going up, so that $300 isn't out of the ballpark. From your description the gun sounds like the typical gun carried by a cop, some holster wear at the muzzle and perhaps some on the cylinder. Read the "sticky" on buying a used revolver at the top of this page.

PA Freedom
May 3, 2009, 04:07 PM
I would go for it. The model 10 is one of the all time classic fighting revolvers. I bought a police trade in with lots of bluing wear, but new internally for $150 in 1999.

May 3, 2009, 05:01 PM
Buy it.

Nice gun, no paper...just the way I like em

May 3, 2009, 07:52 PM
Snag it! It's a great gun for $300.

May 4, 2009, 12:12 AM
Well, I just bought a Model 64-6 which is basically a 10 in stainless. It's in VG condition and was a police gun, too. It was priced at $229.95 at J&G Sales.

Thanks for that link, kp. $230+$22 shipping + $25 FFL fee =$277, and I wouldn't get to handle it first, but the Stainless is a good option. I'll have to spring for one of those if they're still in stock when my gun fund is replenished.

In the end, we went ahead and bought the neighbor's gun. I even got him to throw in a box of ammo since I was afraid I wouldn't find any around town, so it was a pretty good deal. Now I just have to teach my folks to shoot. It's never too late to learn, right? Hopefully they'll get hooked.

I spent my evening taking the revolver apart & cleaning & lubing it. Had to clean up one little rust spot, and there was some lead in the cylinder I thought I'd never get out, but it cleaned up pretty good. I'm very impressed with the trigger, the cylinder locks up tight side-side & front-back, and the gap is too small to put a business card through; I'm anxious to get my feeler gauges in there. Can't wait to shoot it.

Thanks everyone for their input & help. I felt much, much better about the deal after everyone chimed in. I'll post pictures as soon as I have a little time to spare.

May 4, 2009, 01:00 AM
Glad to hear...

That Revolver is a fine choice for them, and, looks good in-the-hand, too, from any angle.

Get some 'Cowboy' Loads for starting out...that or light-load full Wadcutters, for them to be learning with.

Have fun..!

l v

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