Personally, the most desirable 686 is my -3. Just because it's mine
Thief, you stole my line, that's what I was gonna say!
The only thing about my dash-3 I'd change is that I would have opted for the goofy adjustable FRONT sight. I considered it.
Of course, if I had...maybe right now I'd be wishing I'd went a little more traditional. I dunno.
FWIW, I may go against the grain, but my personal "most desirable 686" is the -5. It was a transitional version, so it's the only one that's pre-lock, but with newer features, such as frame-mounted firing pin, pinned front sight, new style cylinder release, and non-recessed cylinder.
I don't know if the SCSW has production numbers, but I'm guessing that your favorite is one of less mintage than many others. I know that I don't see the dash-5 often and I'm drawn to 686's and 586's when I see them offered on the used market.
My buddy has a Model 657 of similar vintage that's pre-lock but with the altered cylinder stop much like your dash-5 and WOW
, that is one very, very well done Smith & Wesson revolver. I think it's a real hidden gem.
As for the non-recessed cylinder, I'm pretty sure no L-frame S&W has any recessed cylinder. I'm sure you know that, but it comes off a bit confusing in your post...as if an earlier model did have them. I learned this a couple years back because my memory had me convinced that an older club member when I was kid had a 586 with recessed chambers but in research (and hindsight), I must have been looking at a different revolver.