View Full Version : Old S&W .32 cal

June 12, 2007, 05:34 PM
In addition to the H&R I had posted ealier, I also got a .32 S&W 5 shot revolver from my grandfather. It is a top break model, nickel plate with black hard rubber handles with the S&W logo molded at the top. It has a 3 1/2" barrel and a front blade sight with a small rear "v" which is actually a part of the latch mechanism. Across the rib of the barrel, it says Smith and Wesson, Hartford, Mass, USA, and several patent dates are listed, the earliest being Jan. 24, 1865 and the latest being Jan. 3, 1882. The little gun locks tight, functions and fires perfectly, and is cosmetically near perfect, eccept for a small sliver missing from one of the grips.

I do not intend to sell the gun, but I am curious as to its value, as well as any history of the particular model that anyone may be aware of.

Thanks for your help.


Mike Irwin
June 12, 2007, 11:58 PM
Serial number?

That's the big arbiter in determining exactly what model & variation it is.

Also, double action or single action?

Full trigger guard or spur trigger?

June 14, 2007, 06:17 PM
The .32 is a double action, five shot revolver. Serial #94558. It has a full trigger guard with a really nice "1/2 moon" trigger

Thanks for your interest.


June 16, 2007, 07:03 AM
Presuming it has an external hammer, #94558 puts it as a 4th Model, manufacture from 1883- 1909. This group ranges from ser # 43,406- approx. #282,999. If it has an internal hammer (double action only, as opposed to double/ single action), then it is a 2nd Model, manufactured from 1902-1909. This ser. # range is from #91,418- approx. #170,000. Each type had it owns serial number range (external hammer versus internal hammer). There were a little over 320,000 external hammer models made and over 240,000 internal hammer models made, so unles it is in near perfect condition, or has something unique and rare about it, then the collector value is not real high. If it was actually made after about 1904, then it would be safe to shoot with modern smokeless loads. If made before, then it should only be fired with blackpowder loads. Shooting smokeless loads in the earlier manufactured guns will not blow them up, but will loosen them up quickly and crack the lower part of the forcing cone right at the thinnest part above the cylinder pin. This can be seen with the barrel opened up and the cylinder removed.

James K
June 16, 2007, 01:45 PM
If it says "Hartford, Mass" it is an exceptionally rare model as Hartford is in Connecticut and S&W is in Springfield, Mass.


June 17, 2007, 08:46 PM
Yeah, that would be a rarity . . .

Sorry, it is indeed Springfield, Mass.