pawn shop revolver

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by Noop, Oct 31, 2007.

  1. Noop

    Noop Guest

    If I wanted to purchase a revolver at a pawn shop what would I have to look for to make sure it isn't a piece of junk? I guess guns are just like guitars, you never know when some little crack you can't see ruins the whole value/tuning.
  2. rickrem700

    rickrem700 New Member

    What to look for???

    Buy a Smith & Wesson or a Ruger, I don't think you can go wrong there, you should be able to see any ovious ware and tare, But before you do anything do your home work, RESEARCH,RESEARCH,RESEARCH, today with the internet at your fingertips there is no reason to step into anything blind!!!

  3. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    If you choose Smith & Wesson, the main things to look for are:

    Overall appearance- does it look like some one cared for it?

    Cylinder play- With the hammer at rest, move the cylinder front to back. A SMALL amount of movement is normal. If you have a more pronounced "click clack" you have a condition known as "end shake cylinder". This is not a fatal flaw. It can be corrected fairly easily but it is a good indication the gun has been fired quite a lot with magnum or higher pressure ammo. You should not ever see this on an L-frame revolver (581, 586, 681, 686) They are built dead tough and will last a lifetime.

    Flame cutting on top strap. Open the cylinder and look at the top of the frame immediately above the back of the barrel (just above the gap between the cylinder and the barrel). On the K-frames (19, 66 etc) a small groove is normal. It should not be deeper than about 1/32 of an inch. If the groove is more pronounced, the top strap of the frame has been weakened by A LOT of magnum ammo. This will give you a pretty good idea how abused the gun was. The L-frames and N-frames should not have this condition as there is more space between the cylinder gap and the top strap.

    If someone tells you a Smith should not have a "ring" around the cylinder at the stop notches, They have no clue what they are talking about. A properly timed Smith will have a slight "ring" around the cylinder where the cylinder stop "just" touches the cylinder as it rotates.
  4. stalkingbear

    stalkingbear Well-Known Member

    pawn revolver

    To begin with,any gun you see in a pawn shop was pawned and lost by owner. That means that they weren't as passionite about ownership as most of us. That means that these firearms likely didn't recieve the same care level as we would bestow upon these guns. Another thing to do is run the numbers to MAKE SURE it wasn't declared stolen AFTER the pawn shop recieved this gun. Rugers are bank vaults with triggers,and S&W L or N frames are a lot tougher than K or J framed revolvers. Another thing to check for on a pawn shop gun is to make sure you get any and all accs that originally came with gun such as extra cylinder or scope rings.
    The best way to check condition after detailed inspection is to pull trigger slowly while checking timing,kepping trigger pulled to rear after hammer falls,and try to shake cylinder on all axixes.
  5. Carbine

    Carbine New Member

    That sounds like a great idea.

    How does a regular Joe like me check the numbers though? Is there a certain procedure or place?
  6. Dgunsmith

    Dgunsmith New Member

    run the numbers ??????????????

    Most States require the copies of pawn tickets and or daily reports to go to the local law enforcement agency. Gone are the days of shady pawn dealers with all the federal regulations.

    ALL Pawn shops ARE licensed FFL dealers.....They are NOT about to sell you a stolen firearm and have the BATF climbing up their butts and loosing their FFL !

    ALL have relationships with local LE to assure their inventory is clean. Any MORON reporting a firearm stolen after signing a pawn ticket IS going to be prosecuted for making a false police report.

    Most good pawn shops either inspect the firearms for safe function or have a local gun smith who checks them. Most with any sense would permit examination by a gunsmith or would take back a defective product.

    If it is sold AS-IS....get someone to go in with you that is familiar with the firearm and make an honest evaluation...some may need some new parts to make the cylinder timing right.:cool:
  7. stalkingbear

    stalkingbear Well-Known Member

    pawn gun

    Dgunsmith-you are mostly right but partly wrong. I HAVE seen cases where somebody got a gun out of back of closet or bottom of drawer,and it wasn't discovered till later. This happened in all cases where a "friend" of someone in the house stole it either when he knew they wasn't home or when they wasn't looking and trusted him. ALWAYS let the buyer beware as if you take it down to local law enforcment,if it's stolen,they'll keep the gun and you have to get your money back from pawn shop. However,this isn't hard to do.
  8. moviezombie

    moviezombie New Member

  9. djl4570

    djl4570 New Member

    As noted by earlier respondents:
    End play or yoke shake.
    Gas cutting of the top strap
    gas cutting of the forcing cone
    Look at the screwheads. Are they buggered up? If so then it's been worked on by an amateur.
    A lot of guns get dropped, and a lot of revolvers get closed by uncultured philistines who insist on flipping the cylinder home with a flick of their wrist. This can spring the crane and make the gun problematic.