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Question on S&W 38 special now with pictures

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Squeal, Sep 4, 2012.

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  1. Squeal

    Squeal Member

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    I got a Smith & Wesson pistol. It says 38 S&W Special Ctg on the barrel. It is a 5 shot. Serial number is 347055. Anybody know what it is? How much it is worth?

    Thanks
     
  2. hmb

    hmb Well-Known Member

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    Could be a model 36, Chief's Special. HMB
     
  3. BigM-Perazzi

    BigM-Perazzi Well-Known Member

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    squal, open the cylinder and look forward on the frame, there may be some letters/numbers stamped there...

    maybe something like mod xxxx
     
  4. Squeal

    Squeal Member

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    Thanks, I am trying to help an old guy out by helping him sell it. I dont have the gun near me, i will look for a model number next time
     
  5. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    There are a few possibilities so the model number and bbl length along with a pic or good description of condition will help determine the value.

    Generally speaking, the market for these 5 shot J frames from the 60's is pretty good - they were well made pistols that are much appreciated by the CCW holders. Right now I would say your friend has a gun that would resell for $400-$500 assuming very good condition.
     
  6. LDAdd

    LDAdd TS Member

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    I think Wolfram is very close on the value. One thing to know is that these earlier guns are NOT built for the +P ammo being pushed for self-defense these days, but who cares as there are lots of nice .38 Spcl loads available. More comfy to shoot as well. Most of these little guns haven't been fired all that much but condition is the final determinate of value. Good luck.

    Larry
     
  7. RickN

    RickN Banned User Banned

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    Squeal, if it is a 3" barrel model 36, I'd be interested in buying.
     
  8. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    could be a model 60. The model is under the open cylinder front hinge.
     
  9. Squeal

    Squeal Member

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    Next time i go to Wy i will get more info. Thanks everybody.
     
  10. quartering

    quartering Active Member

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    square butt or round butt? a 3" 36 with a square butt is a rare bird
     
  11. 51mgb

    51mgb TS Member

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    MODEL 60 IS STAINLESS STEEL
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Model 36 is all steel, has an exposed hammer, and came in blue or nickel.

    Model 37 has a steel barrel and cylinder, with an aluminium frame, and an exposed hammer. The blueing on the barrel and cylinder generally do not match the anodizing on the frame. I don't remember if these were ever nickel plated.

    Model 60 has an exposed hammer and is stainless steel. The stainless steel finish has a "cooler" tone to it, while a nickel finish has a "warmer" tone.

    Butts were mostly round, especially on the 2" models. Most 3" models had a square butt. Most 3" barrels had a bit heavier profile than the 2" barrels. I've heard of 4" barrels, but have never seen one. (It's possible someone got confused with the 4" .32 S&W built on the J frame).

    Note that some very early versions, pre-Model 36, were built on the I-frame. The big difference is the hammer has a coil spring in the J-frame. The I-frame has a leaf spring, and there will be a tension screw on the front of the grip frame like larger S&W's.

    ---------------

    Model 38 has a shrouded hammer. The hammer can still be cocked. It has a steel barrel and cylinder, and an aluminium frame. Finish per the Model 37 above.

    Model 49 also has a shrouded hammer, but is all steel. I'm only aware of these being offered in blue, but they've had a long production run.

    No stainless version of the "Bodyguard" was made, however, there was a latter Model 638 made that has a stainless steel barrel and cylinder, with an aluminium frame that is anodized silver.

    This model had a round but only, and anything other than a 2" barrel is extremely rare. Only 2" barrels were cataloged.

    ---------------

    Model 49 has a concealed hammer and is double action only. These are steel frame and almost all were blued. The round butt has a safety protruding from the rear of the grip on the early guns.

    There is a later Model 649 in stainless steel.
     
  13. Squeal

    Squeal Member

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  14. Squeal

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  15. Squeal

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    squeal_2009_03043.jpg


    Serial number inside frame with cylinder open
     
  16. Squeal

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  17. Squeal

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  18. Squeal

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  19. Squeal

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  20. Squeal

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