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S&W DA Perfected

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Lewis130, Aug 29, 2008.

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  1. Lewis130

    Lewis130 Member

    Jul 23, 2008
    I found this revolver for sale at Collector's (http://www.collectorsfirearms.com/admin/product_details.php?itemID=23610).

    It's going for $500, and looks great:
    *Nice blueing.
    *Topbreak, double action, and good looking.
    *Looks up for shooting every now and then.
    *C&R eligable (I assume).
    *Did I mention good looking?

    The only thing is, I've googled 'S&W DA Perfected' but can't find a damn thing about them anywhere. I don't even know when they were made.
    I might have seen one in a museum somewhere, but the tag just said 'Smith and Wesson .38 revolver'.

    Does anyone know anything about them. Literally anything?
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Sep 17, 2007
    Eastern KS
    Made 1909 - 1920.
    59,400 total production.

    Standard Catalog of S&W 3rd. edition (2006) lists them at Fair = $130, Good = $200, VG = $235, Fine = $275, Ex = $375, EX+ = $550.

    There is a slight premium for the 5" barrel, or Nickle finish.

    This one, if it isn't working properly, and the wrong grips, seems greatly over priced.

  3. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    The "Perfected" was S&W's last top-break revolver. It was called perfected because to break the barrel down for loading and unloading you had to both push on the thumbpiece (located on the left side of the frame) while lifting the latch on the barrel. The system was to prevent someone who was being covered from reaching over, lifting the barrel latch, and tipping the barrel down to eject the cartridges. While this seldom happened (and maybe never) Colt always managed to bring it up in their advertising. :evil:

    While the frame was special, most of the rest of the parts were either taken from the then currently produced 1903 Hand Ejector, .38 Regulation Police and .38 Safety Hammerless models. This substantially reduced tooling and production costs. It was moderately successful in the market place, but after World War One the day of top-break revolvers was quickly passing.

    Note that it is chambered in .38 S&W, not .38 S&W Special.

    It is strictly a collectable, as I think there is little or no shooter interest. If you desire to shoot it however, it is safe to do so. As a collectable it is somewhat hard to find, especially in nice condition. I agree with R.C. that at + or - $500.00 it’s overpriced, but these things keep going up so it may not be way overpriced. In similar condition, .38 Safety Hammerless revolvers, which are far more common and available, are going in the $350.00 to $450.00 range.

    Reproductions of the correct black hard-rubber stocks are available for about $30.00.

    The bottom-line question is, “Are you interested enough to pay somewhat over top market price?”

    For an additional source, go to: www.armchairgunshow.com
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