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S&W Autos model number help needed

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by SoDFW Jason, Apr 9, 2003.

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  1. SoDFW Jason

    SoDFW Jason Member

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    Can someone explain to me the rhyme and reason behind the S&W autos model numbers and what they mean?

    For instance- The 3XXX and the 5XXX series
     
  2. QuarterBoreGunner

    QuarterBoreGunner Member

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    Heh...once upon a time S&W actually had a 'secret decoder' tool for the 4-digit breakdown of their model numbers; they were producing so many new models that people were getting confused.

    So if I remember correctly,

    The first two digits indicate the caliber:

    39= 9mm
    59= 9mm
    69= 9mm
    10= 10mm
    40= .40 S&W
    45= .45 ACP
    35= .356 TSW (rare)

    The third digit indicates the model type:

    0= standard model
    1= compact
    2= standard with decocking lever
    3= compact with decocking lever
    4= standard with double action only
    5= compact with double action only
    6= nonstandard barrel length
    7= nonstandard barrel length with decocking lever
    8= nonstandard barrel length with double action only

    The fourth digit indicates material type:

    3= aluminum frame with stainless steel slide
    4= aluminum frame with carbon steel slide
    5= carbon steel frame and slide
    6= stainless frame and slide
    7= stainless steel frame with carbon steel slide


    Thanks to the Standard Catalog of Smith and Wesson.
     
  3. Marko Kloos

    Marko Kloos Moderator Emeritus

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    The third-generation "value series" models don't necessarily adhere to that scheme. They have three-digit model codes, with the first number designating the caliber and the last two designating the capacity. The Model 908 is a 9mm with an 8-shot magazine. The 411 is a .40 with an 11-round magazine. The 410 is the same gun with a post-ban 10-round magazine.

    Confused yet? :)
     
  4. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    The problem is not that S&W has/had a model numbering system, it is that they have had many. They started with a fairly simple two-digit system (Model 10, Model 19, etc.). Then they decided to adopt a system that would incorporate other information. And things went down hill from there. Worse, they no sooner got everyone up on one system, than they went to another.

    Then us old timers still call the guns by their old names, like M&P or Combat Magnum or K-22. Not to mention the famous "Victory Model", which was an advertising term, was never put on a gun, and was never used by the military.

    Jim
     
  5. QuarterBoreGunner

    QuarterBoreGunner Member

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    lendringser- that's right I forgot about the value guns.

    Me, I stick to revolvers. I'm with Jim on this one; K-22, M&P, etc.
     
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