Spanish .38 revolver (s&w clone )


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mountaindrew
April 30, 2004, 10:52 PM
I looked at this revolver today at a local gunshop. it looked like a s&w. It had the markings on it "trocaola aranzabal y cia eibar espana" It was cambered for 38 special, was nickle plated and had a lanyard ring. it seemed to be in pretty good shape, with maybe 90 finnish and the lockup was tight. mainspring seemed very heavy. Any info you can give would be useful. I am not a collector, I am thinking of a cheap knock around revolver at half the price of an old model 10 s&w. Thanks.

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Old Fuff
April 30, 2004, 11:16 PM
These were imported between the two world wars from Spain. Most are made from poor metal and are not safe shooters. Parts are almost impossible to find and have to be hand fitted. They make good wallhangers, but not much else. You'd be well advised to buy a used S&W Military & Police or model 10 if your looking for a shooter. I have paid as little as $150.00 for a mechanically perfect/cosmetically distressed model 10 for a knock-around.

Jim K
May 5, 2004, 12:13 AM
I agree with Old Fuff. I have seen a couple of those Spanish S&W copies blown up with standard loads. They were made of a poor quality cast iron sometimes called "pot metal". A local dealer sold one to a track team coach to fire blanks. It blew up on the second shot, and that was with a blank!

You might want to do the dealer a favor and tell him what Old Fuff and I have said; if he is smart, it might keep him from being sued. If he sells that gun and someone is killed or hurt, he will absolutely lose the lawsuit - guaranteed. If he gives you a ration, walk away and I recommend avoiding that shop in the future; they don't care about the safety of their customers.

Jim

mountaindrew
May 5, 2004, 08:06 PM
Thanks for the info guys, i will definately stay away from the gun (not the shop though). It was at my favorite gunshop, a large well stocked place with great service, decent prices, and a good reputation. Maybe they just didnt know how crappy those guns are ( like i said it looked to be in good shape).
Now Old Fluff, about those $150 model 10s, I wish I could find a scource of those. I have heard people talk about them, but never seen one. If I did, I would buy three! I have never seen a smith wheelgun for less than about $300, and i look alot. Thanks for your responces!

Jim K
May 5, 2004, 11:04 PM
Look around at most of the bigger gun shows, and check Shotgun News. If you are willing to take one that has some exterior wear or a bit of rust, I think you can probably get in under $150, certainly under $200 (plus dealer transfer fee, if applicable). Police tradeins were carried much, shot little; most are in near new condition functionally.

Jim

Old Fuff
May 6, 2004, 03:00 AM
mountaindrew:

If I may ask, what part of the country do you live in. Sometime handguns are more expensive in certain states or cities then in others.

Used guns usually are priced and sell on the basis of how they look. If they are a popular model that looks like it's in new condition you can expect it to be "priced up" and the seller will probably hold to it. However, if the same guns is showing finish wear and even (gasp!) a little minor rusting the cost will be much lower, and the seller more then willing to deal.

What is most important is not the finish, which can be left as it is or done over, but the mechanical condition and what shape the bore and chambers are in. You can use a Check List, posted at the top of the revolver forum, as a guide to check out most any used Smith & Wesson. More information about a particular gun can be learned by posting a thread on TFL. If possible include a full description and a partial serial number (such as 1367xx where "xx" is the last two numbers). More then once a member has found out that an "ordinary" gun they are looking at is actually a collectable worth more then the asking price.

As Jim just pointed out, a lot of police departments turned in their old S&W revolvers when they switched to automatics. There are literally millions of them circulating around.

mountaindrew
May 6, 2004, 11:45 AM
I am in St louis Mo, and from what I can tell, gun prices seem pretty much on par with must other places people post from, not the lowest, but not anywhere near the highest. Maybe Missouri cops traded in thier wheelguns a few years earlier than the rest of the country and they're all snapped up already?

Old Fuff
May 6, 2004, 12:00 PM
>> Maybe Missouri cops traded in thier wheelguns a few years earlier than the rest of the country and they're all snapped up already? <<

Perhaps, but they still show up as their new buyers decide to sell or trade for whatever reason. Besides watching the "used showcase" at local dealers I'd check out gun shows and pawn shops. In addition watch web sites like: www.gunbroker.com and www.gunsamerica.com

Dealers often inflate their asking price to leave room for dealing. So deal, and carry cash.

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