Need a little help?!

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by LifeElevated, Aug 27, 2013.

  1. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    I recently inherited a S&W 38 special. It appears to be little customized with shortened barrel and larger grip. I'm trying to figure out what it might be worth and what year it is? It has some holster wear in the blueing but other than that seems to be very sound and in good shape. Any help would be great thanks!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. trip286

    trip286 New Member

    18,658
    1
    0
    Yeah, it's been tinkered with.

    We need close up, well lighted, in focus shots of any and all markings (open up that cylinder too, there should be a number stamped under the cylinder crane), and more of the gun itself.

    It's not uncommon to slap aftermarket grips on a Smith and Wesson, because honestly, their standard skinny factory grips leave a bit to be desired. This doesn't take that much away, or add much to, the value of the gun, depending on the particulars of the gun itself.

    Without more info or better pics, I'd throw out a ballpark figure of $300. Could be worth as little as $200, or as much as a couple grand, so you see where more info and many more/better pics are very important...
     

  3. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    Hopefully these are a little better, from what I can tell the numbers on the barrel and cylinder match but haven't removed the grip to see if the frame numbers match or if there are any. Thanks for the reply!
     

    Attached Files:

  4. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    Couple more pics.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. trip286

    trip286 New Member

    18,658
    1
    0
    Yeah, I'm way lost. Without a model number, I'm clueless. The model number is what SHOULD be under the crane, but not inside the lug.

    So this was either built before they started doing that, or its a foreign knockoff (but most people don't customize a foreign knockoff).

    We have some very knowledgeable people here, and I'm sure one or more of them will be along to help you out.
     
  6. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    All three numbers do match.
     

    Attached Files:

  7. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    Yeah it would be a surprise to me if it was a knock off, seems silly to put custom trigger and hammer on a knock off. Appreciate the time. I consider my self fairly well versed when it comes to guns but this one has me stumped.
     
  8. JW357

    JW357 New Member

    6,716
    1
    0
    The important picture IMO is the one of the barrel which says: 38 s&w special ctg
     
  9. bigjim

    bigjim New Member

    560
    0
    0
    It looks like an old police service revolver with modified grip and sights, hammer and trigger. I would guess somewhere around $250.00 in it's current condition.

    Jim
     
  10. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    Yeah, I think I have narrowed it down to a prewar 38/44 HD. It has no model number under the crane and is a 5 digit not 6 digit serial which are both indicative of prewar years.
     
  11. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    11,380
    2
    0
    5 screw Smith's are desirable, but sadly this one is not in very nice condition. .38 Spl Outdoorsman, I believe. Some refer to this as the .38/44 as it is built on the larger .44 frame (N-frame)
     
  12. Bob Wright

    Bob Wright Member

    871
    3
    18
    The sights don't look like S&W factory, hard to tell about the rear sight. But the front sight is definitely an aftermarket blade, ramp too, probably.

    Looks like 'Thirties vintage. If action is good and tight, I believe better than $350 in my neck of the woods.

    These guns have increased in value as basis for conversion to .44 Special or .45 Colt. Believe some custom 'smiths will pay a premium.


    Also, these guns were known, in their day, as the .38/44 Heavy Duty and the .38/44 Outdoorsman. The Heavy duty had fixed sights, while the Outdoorsman had adjustable sights.

    And further, the .38/44 Special cartridge was the +P round of its day, as was the .38 Special Hi-Speed.



    Bob Wright
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2013
  13. trip286

    trip286 New Member

    18,658
    1
    0
    See? Told ya we got some good members here! ;)

    By the way, welcome to FTF!
     
  14. LifeElevated

    LifeElevated New Member

    14
    0
    0
    Thanks guys I appreciate it! It was my Grandads "personal protection" gun, so has more sentimental value than anything. May consider replating it since it has very minimal pitting.
     
  15. coonbait

    coonbait Member

    47
    0
    6
    from the sn# I think your gun was made around 1940-41