S&W registered magnum questions

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by megatronrules, Jul 22, 2004.

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  1. megatronrules

    megatronrules Member

    Jan 5, 2003
    The sunshine state,Florida
    I am looking for info on these guns such as serial number info i.e. what was the range of serial numbers for these guns and did they have anything special in thair serial numbers like the letters "REG"? Is it true that some early pre model 27 smiths looked just like registered magnums and that some people might try to sell them as such as I've heard? Lastly whats the best way to ID one of these guns visualy,are there any special markings or things like that? Also is there an online source of info specificly of the registered magnums that relates to what I'am looking for thanks?
  2. Bullet Bob

    Bullet Bob Member

    Feb 4, 2003
    Piedmont, NC
    Go to the smith-wessonforum.com and search the "before 1945" section, there's a lot of info there.

    Better is "The Standard Catalogue of Smith & Wesson" (2nd edition) by Supica and Nahas, available from Amazon.com and other book seller.

    Best is a lengthy article by S&W historian Roy Jinks, but's that's only available as far as I know in out of print "specialty periodicals".

    I don't know of an internet site that has all the info, but that doesn't mean there isn't one.

    I have a copy of all the print articles mentioned, so if there's some very specific info I can help you with let me know. I am not willing to enter copious amounts of the intellectual property of others, so please don't ask for everything.
  3. Majic

    Majic Member

    May 3, 2003
    Basically there is no difference in a Registered Magnum, Non-Registered Magnum, Pre-27, and Model 27. They are the same gun just built in different time periods.
    The Registered Magnum will have it's registration number (REG-XXX) stamped on the frame behind the crane/yoke. Look for that number as it's the only telling feature. They were made from 1935 to 1939. Over 5000 were made and the serial numbers range around 45768 - 62489 give a take according to various sources.
    Beware that have been faked certificates. The certificate adds greatly to the value of the revolver.
  4. sgt127

    sgt127 Member

    Apr 29, 2003
    Being a proud owner of a Registered Magnum and several other older Smiths, the key to Reg Mag is indeed the Reg number in the yoke. The non reg. magnums that followed are actually more rare. But, there is something particularly cool about a Registered Magnum (for me anyway). It would not be difficult for somebody to stamp that little "REG XXXX" in the yoke though.
    Bullet Bob and Majic gave good advise. Get the book, make sure the serial number is in the right range and finally, get a letter from Jinks, the S&W historian on the gun. Dirt cheap at $25 to authenticate the history of the gun.
  5. C.R.Sam

    C.R.Sam Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 19, 2002
    Chino Valley, AZ., USA
    All of the above...plus.
    Registered Magnums were built to customer's specs.
    Barrel length from 3 1/2 to 8 3/4" in 1/4" increments.
    Any sight in inventory.
    Grips to order.
    Choice of finish.
    Ball detent in yoke to lock cylinder in the open position.
    Many, many combinations of features.

    If one were lucky enough to be able to look at a couple hundred registered magnums....there is a possibility that no two would be alike.

  6. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

    Dec 28, 2002
    Houston, TX
    Trust me, when you hold YOUR registered, and then you hold a pre-27 5 screw, there is a difference!

    My registered is smoother, better polished, more accurate and has a far better trigger then any of my other 5-screw N frames. There is a world of difference in them or at least in mine.

    Here are some pictures so you can compare.
    The registered is center bottom. The pre-27 is in the 3 oclock position.

    Here is the checkering on the humpbacked hammer.

    They had a neat hold open latch that the pre-27's don't have.

    Here is the checkering on the top strap.

    Here is the sight picture.

    This is where your registration number goes.

    Here is 2 50 shot groups, single action 15 yards if I remember right.

    Trust me, there is a huge difference.....
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