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Identity and Date of Manufacture of S&W Revolvers

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Brian Williams, Jun 21, 2008.

  1. elkhunt

    elkhunt Member

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    thx for the info.
     
  2. Devonai

    Devonai Member

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    Thanks again, sir.
     
  3. Yelovitz_503

    Yelovitz_503 Member

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    a) .357
    b) 4"
    c) it's an L frame I believe, they aren't round
    d) 6 shot
    e) fixed sights
    f) AWY1915
    g) E20 65237

    what can you tell me about my little friend here?
     
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    g) E20 65237 is not the model number.
    It is an assembly number

    It says something like Mod xx-x inside the crane cut.

    That is the model number.

    rc
     
  5. Propforce

    Propforce Member

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    Hi, a long time lurker and a first time poster here.

    I have 3 S&W revolvers.

    1. S&W 686-3, 4 inch barrel, 6 shots, adjustable rear sight
    serial # BHB80xx
    There's also an engraved number that I do not know what it means, 07x

    2. S&W model 19-5, 2 1/2 inch barrel, 6 shots, adjustable rear sight
    serial # Bxx
    There's also an engraved number that I do not know what it means, X86xx

    3. S&W 638-3, 2 inch barrel, 5 shots, fixed sight
    serial # CRU00xx
    There's also an engraved number that I do not know what it means, 8xx

    Thanks.

    Edit: Just saw Rcmodel's post above, those engraved number must be the model number.
     
  6. Radagast
    • Contributing Member

    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    Propforce:
    Your Model 686-3 Distinguished Combat Magnum Stainless was manufactured in early 1991. Guns in the BHExxxx range shipped in March of that year. If 07x is laser engraved then it is probably an assembly number, used to track parts in the factory. If electro-penciled then possibly it is a police inventory number.

    The Model 19-5 Combat Magnum was produced from 1982 to 1988. The serial number should be in the range 125K000 to 311K273 (1982 or 1983) or ADT3000 to BDCxxxx (1984 to 1988). Check the number and get back to me.

    The Model 638 Bodyguard Airweight Stainless was manufactured after 2004, which is the latest the serial ranges cover in the Standard Catalog of S&W. As it is a recent gun a call to S&W customer service should give you a shipping date. 8xx is an assembly or inventory number.

    Model number are stamped under the cylinder yoke (swing out the cylinder to see) and will say Model 686-3, Model 19-5, Model 638, etc. Sometimes there is an assembly number there. Sometimes the serial number is duplicated there. The serial number is always found on the bottom of the grip frame, regardless of whether it is duplicated elsewhere on the gun.
     
  7. Radagast
    • Contributing Member

    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    Yelovitz 503:
    Serial number AWYxxxx dates your gun to mid to late 1987.
    If blued with fixed sights it is a Model 581 Distinguished Service Magnum.
    If stainless with fixed sights it is a Model 681 Distinguished Service Magnum Stainless.
    If blued with adjustable sights it is a Model 586 Distinguished Combat Magnum.
    If stainless with adjustable sights it is a Model 686 Distinguished Combat Magnum stainless.

    If the model number is followed by a -1 then the gun is subject to a recall. With some magnum ammo the primer can flow back into the firing pin bushing, locking the gun. Under the recall S&W will pay shipping both ways and install a new firing pin and bushing.
    if there is an M stamped near the model number the gun has already been modified.
    if there is a -2 after the model number the gun incorporates the new bushing and pin and will not need changing.
     
  8. Sealevel

    Sealevel Member

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    DOB for Model 60

    Radagast could you date this one for me?

    A. .38 Special
    B. 2"
    C. Round
    D. 5
    E. fixed
    F. BAU0077
    G. Model 60

    Thanks once again.
     
  9. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    Sealevel:
    Early 1988. serial numbers i the AYWxxxx range shipped December 1987 and in the BBFxxxx range in July 1988.
     
  10. Propforce

    Propforce Member

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    Thanks Radagast. I double-checked again and what is stamped on the cylinder yoke has two lines. The first line stamped B2x and the second line stamped X86xx.

    I do, however; have a box that came with the gun (bought used). It says on the box that the serial number is ABN 23xx. I can not be sure that box came with the gun so not sure which number to go with? Other information on the box is consistent with the gun, e.g., Model 19, barrel 2 1/2, Fin. B, Stock RB, etc. But the product code and Spec. Ord. numbers are not the same as stamped on the gun.
     
  11. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    If it has oversize or one-piece rubber grips?
    Take the grips off and see what the serial number actually is.
    It is stamped on the butt and that one is the real deal.

    rc
     
  12. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    As RCmodel said, take off the grips. look at the bottom of the grip frame.
    Assuming the serial number is abn23xx then your gun actually dates to 1983. ABLxxxx shipped in January & ADExxxx in October. The Model 19 must have switched over to the new serial ranges a little earlier than I thought.
     
  13. tbow1964

    tbow1964 Member

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    A 38 S&w nickel plated 4 inch pencil barrel. Has a lanyard loop on the butt, smooth wooden grips. On the butt reads V 4331xx, same number on cylinder. Frame has KQ 87988. Can you identify?

    Thanks,
    T
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2012
  14. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    tbow1964:
    You have a British Service Revolver manufactured between 1941 & 1944 for Great Britain. These were the .38 Military & Police Model of 1905 4th Change chambered in .38 S&W, which was the British service cartridge of the time.

    Barrel length was normally 5 inches, so yours may have been cut back. Finish (except for one presentation piece) was blued or black, so it has been refinished.
    After the war a lot of these were sold as surplus, with the chambers bored out to accept .38 special. .38 Special has a narrower case than the .38 S&W and if converted the gun will tend to bulge or split brass as the case tries to fire form to the oversize chamber.
    If your gun has been converted then stick to standard pressure lead ammo only, no PlusP, +P+ or jacketed ammo.
    Your gun also lacks the internal hammer block safety introduced later in the war and still in use today. If dropped it could fire. So leave the chamber under the hammer empty and treat it as a 5 shooter.
     
  15. Frogman

    Frogman Member

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    S&W Mod 28-2, 6" BBL 357 cartage marked on barrel S/N N5289** Can you give me date of manufacture - Thank You -
     
  16. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    Frogman:
    Your Model 28-2 Highway Patrolman was manufactured in the period 1978-1980. As the N5xxxxx serial range was mainly used for Model 28s & 58s, with the high grade guns such as the Model 27 & 29 using the N6xxxxx range, I'm inclined to believe late 1979 is likely for your gun. I can't see 30,000 or so N frame service pistols selling in one year.
     
  17. cymek

    cymek Member

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    Radagast,

    Looks like you are the man. Can you help with mine?

    38Special, model 10-8, blue, Serial number on the butt AUB01XX, 5", it there is a number under the cylinder XX15X and A1 above that. Also on the side of the grip under the wood there is another number 4547

    Thank you.
     
  18. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    cymek:
    Your Model 10-8 .38 Military & Police Heavy Barrel was manufactured in early 1987.
    The markings other than the serial number are called assembly numbers, used to track parts in the factory. They have no meaning after the gun is assembled and shipped.
     
  19. cymek

    cymek Member

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    Wow that was fast, I said it once, but I'll say it again, you are the MAN.
    Thank you. :)
     
  20. rubensano

    rubensano Member

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    I live in, and bought it in Sweden, used around 1980
    Any help is very appreciated
    Kind Regards
    Michael


    a) .38 Special CTG./ Blue
    b) 6" wood
    c) Round
    d) 6
    e) fixed
    f) Z184487( They are groupt like this: Z first line,18448 on second, and 7 on the last) All from under the barrel
    My licens says it is M/14 but i guess it is a K14?
     
  21. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    rubensano:
    You have a Model 14 / K38 Target Masterpiece, these were produced from 1946 to 1982 This was one of S&W's target revolver set, the others being the Model 17/ K22 & Model 16 K32.

    The numbers you are quoting are assembly numbers, used to track parts in the factory. The serial number will have a K prefix if an early gun, or it will have a a K within the serial number if later production. You will find the serial number on the bottom of the grip frame. If you have target grips you will need to take them off to see it. Get back to me with the serial number and I'll give you a year of manufacture.
     
  22. cwl1862

    cwl1862 Member

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    Just picked up a sweet little J frame, in excellent condition. Was wondering when it was born.

    a) 38 spl
    b) 1 7/8
    c) RB
    d) 5
    e) fixed
    f) AYB56XX
    g) 60 no dash

    Thanks!
     
  23. rubensano

    rubensano Member

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    Hi again, Many thanks for your effort!
    The number in the bottom of the frame is:
    K 255386

    Thanks in advance,
    Ruben
     
  24. Radagast
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    Radagast Moderator Staff Member

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    rubensano:
    K255xxx dates your gun to 1955. This makes it a K38 Target Masterpiece, the Model 14 designation was not used before 1957.

    cwl1862:
    Your Model 60 Chiefs Special Stainless was manufactured in late 1987.
     
  25. rubensano

    rubensano Member

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    Many thanks for this exact answer!
    Br, Ruben
     

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