Make: Smith & Wesson
Model: ‘The .38 Double Action 3rd Model’
Serial Number: 281361
Year of Manufacture: Approximately 1890
Caliber: .38 S&W Black Powder; We do not recommend firing this pistol.
Action Type: 5-Shot, Double / Single Action, Top Break, Auto-Ejecting Revolver.
Markings: The top of the barrel’s rib is marked “SMITH & WESSON SPRINGFIELD MASS. U.S.A. PAT’D JAN. 24, 65 / JULY 11, 65. AUG. 24, 69. REISSUE JULY 25, 71. DEC. 2, 79. MAY 11 80. JAN. 5 82”. The serial number is found on the butt of the grip frame, back of the cylinder, rear flat of the barrel and underside of the barrel latch.
Barrel Length: 5", with fluted rib.
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a rounded ‘half-moon’ blade that is pinned into the barrel’s rib. The rear sight is a raised “V” notch on top of the barrel latch.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are checkered hard rubber with intertwined S&W logos in circle on the upper flanks. The inside of the right panel is hand carved "181317", which does not correspond with the frame, there is a chip loss on the butt of this stock, the left panel has some hair line cracks at the butt. Both have rubbing and both are in about Good Plus overall condition.
Type of Finish: Nickel, with blued trigger guard, hammer & trigger.
Finish Originality: Factory Original
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-dark and the rifling is defined but worn, there is moderate depth erosion in the barrel. We do not recommend firing this handgun.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 97% of its current metal finish. The surfaces under the finish show cleaning marks and erosion. The current nickel finish has a bright sheen, with a few rub wear areas. The metal to metal fit and overall line shape were retained well, whoever restored the pistol did a good job. The screw head slots range from sharp to moderately tooled. The markings are clear. Overall, this handgun rates in about Very Good Plus condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The pistol has an exposed hammer, top break auto ejector and nice trigger pulls. The cylinder has about 1/32” side to side play and no measurable back play in full lockup of all 5 chambers. The double action trigger pull is smooth. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: The pistol comes with a vintage two piece hinged box, the end label reflects a 5" barrel and nickel finish. The underside is hand written "722834 / 1200", neither correspond with the revolver's number. The tray has a loss with old white tape securing a piece of cardboard on top and inside of the box. There is discoloration and losses of wrap at the corners, the box is in Good condition for its age.
Our Assessment: From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.38_S%26W "The .38 S&W (9×20mmR) is a revolver cartridge developed by Smith & Wesson in 1877 for use in the S&W .38 Single Action. Though similar in name, it is not interchangeable with the later .38 Smith & Wesson Special due to a different case shape and slightly larger bullet diameter. The British military adopted a loading of this cartridge as the Cartridge, S.A., Revolver Ball, 380 in, MkI .38-200, with the "200" referring to the weight of the bullet in grains. In 1937, this cartridge was replaced in British Service by the Cartridge, S.A., Revolver Ball, 380 in, MkII. The main difference between it and the previous round was that it had a 178 gr (11.5 g) FMJ bullet." This revolver was restored well, it looks great in nickel and will make for a great addition to your S&W collection. The vintage box is sure to attract collectors just for its scarcity. Please see our pictures and good luck.
CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable: This antique handgun can be sold in California. This handgun CAN be transferred as a dealer sale in California. This handgun CANNOT be sold as a Private Party Transfer (PPT) at our Simi Valley shop. All cartridge firing handguns (even C&R's and antiques) sold to a California resident must be DROS'd. This does not apply to out of state residents.
LSB#: 161128LV34 Make: Smith & Wesson Model: ‘The .38 Double Action 3rd Model’ Serial Number: 281361 Year of Manufacture: Approximately 1890 Caliber: .38 S&W
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