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Old May 29, 2011, 10:50 AM   #1
Swissfondue
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Smith & Wesson 1880?

My father bought this Smith & Wesson in Yemen over 30 years ago. That is why the handle is plastic and has an arab inscription. It is a single-action, cartridge-firing, 5 shot top-break revolver with automatic cartridge ejection. Serial number 24015, the cylinder has number 04921. The last date on the barrel is difficult to read: probably May 11th 1880, as the prior date reads July 25th 1871.

Can you help identify the model?
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Old May 29, 2011, 11:23 AM   #2
SDC
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This will be a S&W 38 Single Action 2nd Model, built in 1876 or 1877. HTH.
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Old May 29, 2011, 11:56 AM   #3
RJay
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???? The grip ( handle ) looks to be a standard S&W grip with a standard S&W logo, am I missing something???
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Old May 29, 2011, 06:18 PM   #4
James K
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New one on me! I have never heard the intertwined S&W logo described as being an "arab" marking.

Actually, those were pretty good guns and most I see around are in working condition, unlike other guns of that era.

Jim
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Old May 30, 2011, 07:11 AM   #5
Mike Irwin
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The grips aren't plastic, they're hard rubber. If you decide to take them off the gun, be VERY careful as they get VERY brittle with age.

And definitely standard S&W logo grips, not Arabic.
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Old May 30, 2011, 02:32 PM   #6
Swissfondue
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Thanks and sorry

Thank you for your help in identifying my gun. As you noticed, I'm very much new to this. Sorry about the "arab" reference.

It still works fine, but I haven't fired it yet. Unsure if I should dare do so.
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Old May 30, 2011, 06:00 PM   #7
RJay
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Don't worry about it, you just messed up my fuzzy little head with the grip comment welcome aboard.
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Old May 30, 2011, 08:29 PM   #8
James K
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Those guns are fine with modern .38 S&W ammo, if you can find any. Some folks will say to use only black powder, but I fired almost a box of new ammo out of one of those and out of a Baby Russian a month or so ago. Horrible sights, but otherwise no problems.

Jim
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Old May 30, 2011, 09:27 PM   #9
Mike Irwin
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The big problem with blackpowder frame S&W guns and modern smokeless ammo isn't a catastrophic failure of the gun.

It's the fact that smokeless powder can stretch the ductile iron that was used in the frames of a lot of the black powder era guns.

Smokeless powder has a significantly different pressure curve, one that's just not compatible with the ductile iron frames.
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