S&W Model 10, 38 Special

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by BarryNiven, Sep 4, 2011.

  1. BarryNiven

    BarryNiven New Member

    I have my deceased father's WWII service revolver, a S&W model 10. It has not been fired in 30 to 40 years. There's a picture here:

    Model 10

    There is rust here and there on the gun. How do I find out if it is safe to fire? If it is, how do I maintain it? If not, how do I safely dispose of it? (I have lots of other things to remember him by.)
  2. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

    Do you have any pictures of it we could view. Chances are it is fine to shoot.


  3. hiwall

    hiwall Active Member

    If thats the one in the picture, it looks to be a "Victory" model. Odds are it would be fine to shoot but of course I'm not there to look it over. They were made in .38 special and .38/200(not interchangeable). Dispose of it with me as it is worth $200 to $400.
  4. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    The sentimental value far exceeds the monetary value. The wartime S&W's are good quality firearms. Barring any major issues it should be fine to shoot. They were not +P rated so stick with standard pressure .38 Spl ammo.
  5. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

    Actually, I think your Dad's revolver is a Victory Model of the Military & Police Revolver- the M&P was the name BEFORE they started numbering models. If the serial number on the butt starts with a V, that be it. As said, these were made in .38 S&W, AND in .38 S&W Special. Two different cartridges.

    Here is an owner's manual for your revolver- all 4 pages of it. http://stevespages.com/pdf/s&w_10.pdf

    There is NOTHING to remove or take apart for owner's level maintenance on these. Your basic tool will be light oil, cloth, and wipe/rub. Your revolver appears to be Parkerized- this is a dull, gray/green phosphate finish used on military arms- it will not be the bright shiny blue/black of a civilian arm- and that is normal.

    I cannot tell you if the gun is safe to fire- not at long range- but these were well made, durable, reliable- and it SHOULD be safe to fire- but have a pistolsmith or an experienced revolver shooter take a look at it. Be sure you are using the correct caliber ammo- 38 S&W, and 38 S&W Special do not interchange.

    IF you ever want to dispose of it, there are several people here that would walk all over their friends to buy it from you. I have a Collector's Federal Firearm license, and would be glad to discuss it with you myself- as would many a WW 2 re-enactor.

    If you are not familiar with the legalities of selling firearms, the important thing to know is that if the ownership is being transferred across a state line OTHER than by inheritance, the firearm needs to be shipped TO a Federal Firearms License holder (FFL), either a Dealer or Collector, in the home state of the recipient.
  6. pioneer461

    pioneer461 New Member

    I would take it to a good gunsmith. It is impossible to know without a professional examination as to whether it is safe to shoot with modern ammo.

    Look, I'll make you a good deal. I'll do you a favor and take it off of your hands for $100.00, no questions asked. :cool: Honest, I'll be doing you a favor. I'll even pay for shipping.

    Just kidding. :) What a great piece of not only American history, but family history as well. Congratulations.
  7. Chainfire

    Chainfire Well-Known Member Supporter

    Take it to a gunsmith. Tell him it is NOT FOR SALE and don't sell it to him for any price the day you take it in. Where I live you wouldn't have to pay $20.00 for a smith to tell you it is ok to shoot, and what kind of ammo to shoot in it.

    If you decide to sell it, make sure you know what it is worth. Sometimes the smallest of details can make a huge difference in the value of a firearm. When you determine exactly what you have, look at Gunbroker to see what this type of gun is selling for.

    The gun buying, selling and trading business is just like any other. Most people are honest, some a crooks, and everyone wants to get a good deal. Take your time, don't get took.
  8. onenut58

    onenut58 New Member

    The victory models are all safe to shoot +p ammo as are all smith and wessons made after 1923 and recieved heat treating. The +p designation was added many years later when ammo manufactures tonned down the loads fearing law suits from people using the older hotter ammo in cheaper made guns.Todays +p ammo is not as hot as the old standard round 38 special grandpa used to shoot.
    Go to smithandwesson forums.com and sighn up and ask. You will find out all there is or can be known about your gun and also ask about the +p ratings and read the FAQ by Saxonpig.The victory models were all chambered in 38 special and the 38/200.
    The 38/200 was not used by the us and was exported to england. Many of them were brought back to the usa and rechambered for the 38 special.
    From the pictures of the gun it looks to be in very good condition.I would take it to a gun shop and have a gun smith explain it to you and show you how to clean it.I would buy a nice display case and hang it on the wall. Or you can shoot +p ammo through it every day for the rest of your life and your grand kids can to.
    It is just as durable as any model 10 ever made. It also has the long trigger pull of the old five screw model 10 or like said above the M&P before 1957.The trigger pull should be as smooth as butter.
  9. The Man

    The Man New Member

  10. HalsellArms

    HalsellArms New Member

    I have a Victory model. Love that old gun. Hasnt been shot in probably 10 years cause no one knew how to fix it. Found out after taking my gunsmith courses it was binding because they were still using right hand threads on the extractor rod at that time. when the cylender rotates it unthreads binding up the cylender. so be mindfull of that. a little removable locktite will fix that. as far as if yours is or is not a Victory model its like the gentalman said check for the V before the serial number. but if this was issued to your dad during the war then it wont be. V models were called that because of our victory over Germany so it was a limited run manufactured between 1944-46. And was stamped with US Goverment Property. but still sold to the public as well as issued out to M&P.
  11. onenut58

    onenut58 New Member

    The binding problem the poster is describing was not on victory models or other model 10 frames. It was with the early model 29 N frame 44 magnums that would under heavy use with the increased recoil of the 44 magnum which was a lot hotter ammo than todays, loosen up the extractor rod and bind itself in the cutout making the cylinder lock shut. Smith and wesson reversed the threads curing the problem. They did reverse the threads on all models how ever to make the engineers change standard.
    I could go on about the manufacture dates of the vitory model and the easy identifying characteristics of them that are extrememly obvious before you check the serial number with the V for victory prefix and the serial number.
    But I surfed up this page where the guy who wrote it is very detailed and knows what he is talking about.
  12. HalsellArms

    HalsellArms New Member

    Im sorry sir but this is a problem with all older S&W that were still using the right hand threads cause that was the problem with mine. And its been a pain in the ass while trying to fix other problems on the pistol while function testing. constantly having to re-tighten the rod after about 10 triger pulls. I followed your link though and that guy dose know what he is talking about. I say keep it even if you never shoot it again. throw it in your safe, make sure its good and dry in there, oil it down to keep it from rusting any further and just pull it out for when your friends are over to show off a great peace of history. Something you can pass on to your kids you know.
  13. The Man

    The Man New Member

    "Safely dispose of it????" Calm down and take deep breath, my friend.:)

    When you have a piece of history in your hands, especially when it's from a close family member like your POP who passed on, I'd rethink it ,if I was you. Once it's gone, ya can't get it back. Take it to the gunsmith and ask about it. DO NOT SELL IT, if he gives you a 'Deal'. Find out about the true worth of it, by doing research on the internet and closely looking at every centimeter of the gun for markings, etc. Markings can increase the value of a firearm highly. There are lots of sites on the 'puter that can aid you in your research. Have fun and learn all about that gun. Then do what you think is best for you. Goodluck!