Old Toy - S&W .38 DA


March 11, 2010, 10:35 PM
Here is an ol toy of mine I inherited. From the serial number 58xxxx *Edit for bad eyes* 388xxx. Sights are adjustable. Anyhow, have never shot it. I inherited it with some cowboy loads in the cylinder. She mostly just sits in my closet lookin purty.


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March 11, 2010, 11:47 PM
very nice

I have my eye on a break-top right now.

March 12, 2010, 12:55 AM
Hi OicO,

Serial number as given, does not co-respond to the Revolver's features.

What Number appears on the face of the Cylinder? And, what other numbers do you find in other locations?

March 12, 2010, 08:31 AM
Oops my bad, first number of the serial is a 3, so 388xxx. That is the only number I can find on it though. On top of the barrel is just some made in springfield and patent numbers. Nothing on the cylinder face I can see. Didnt want to show my girls bad side but there it is in the last pic. Looks like someone dropped it on something hard at one point and it landed handle down, or they smacked someone over the head with it too hard.

March 12, 2010, 08:56 AM
You have a .38 S&W Double Action 4th Model, probably manufactured in 1898 or 1899. Guns with serial numbers before 382022 are pre 1898 and are classified as antiques by the BATF. 216300 4th Models were manufactured between 1895 & 1909.

March 12, 2010, 09:34 AM
Dang thanks for the info. I had it loaded and ready to go as one of the house guns. Seemed tight, clean, and fairly newish compared to some of my other guns not nearly so old. Just took interest in it last night and decided to figure out what it was. Always sort of irked me that it had no model number on it (inherited it from a dead uncle as a kid).

Old Fuff
March 12, 2010, 09:54 AM
Why did you say that "Sights are adjustable?" I don't see that they are, but a factory adjustable rear sight was offered as an extra-cost option. Few were made however, and a revolver with an adjustable sight would be worth a lot more then one without.

Your photograph clearly shows what the serial number is. They are getting to be more valuable, as I recently saw one go in the upper $300 range at a California auction.

March 12, 2010, 10:27 AM
A assumed it is adjustable. The rear sight is a separate piece inserted in to slot at the top and has some screws around it. I figured they probably moved it but I haven't tested it. I can get a picture of it when I get home this evening.

Its funny though, from that uncle I inherited an ugly hand made rast gasser clone covered in rust that looks to be a million years old, the much cleaner better looking S&W I inherited from him is a older but looks 100x newer. A bit ironic.

I need to put some cosmoline on this thing though. It lived for ages in TX rust free. Living in Louisiana isn't doing it any favors though. Has a touch of light rust on the S&W emblem now.

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