View Full Version : iver-johnson supershot info

mega twin
October 28, 2008, 06:07 AM
I have recently started looking at these,and would like to know if there are any common problem areas to look for.

James K
October 28, 2008, 06:46 PM
I assume you are looking at them with the intent of buying one. Unless the price is good and your interest is as a plinker, I would have to say to forget the IJ and go with something of a more modern design that has a "home." They have some collector interest, but only in new condition. Average condition guns sell for $100-150, with few takers.

The main weak point of that revolver is its antiquated (1880's) design. The trigger pull is hard and usually rough, and can't be improved significantly. (The trigger, sear and hammer are case hardened, and stoning will ruin them.) The real weakness, though, is in the hand. Any wear on the hand will result in failure of the cylinder to time up properly, plus the cylinder ratchet is not well designed or cut very deep, so it wears also, with the same result.

Another point, if you have any ideas about disassembling an IJ (or any other guns of that era), forget them. Unless you have skill and experience, the parts will go into a box or paper bag to be worked on "someday." Most gunsmiths won't work on them because they are such a PITA and they would have to charge more than the gun is worth.

If you want a .22 revolver, look at the Ruger Single Six or try to find a decent used S&W Kit Gun or K-38. Any of those would give you a lifetime of service with no problems. As to .22 semi-autos, there are a whole bunch of good ones from Ruger, Browning, Walther, and others.


mega twin
October 28, 2008, 09:09 PM
Thank you Jim. I like odd old suff,but prefer it to work.Mike

James K
October 29, 2008, 03:05 PM
Hi, Mike,

That is the problem. Aside from wear, the old guns have flat springs that are always breaking (hand and trigger springs especially) and require hand fitting to replace. I have worked on a lot of the old guns but I agree with gunsmiths who won't touch them. Just too much work for no gain. (Sort of like restoring a Yugo!)

The IJ and H&R revolvers are most common, but I do like the other oldies. I have several "odd wads" including H&A's, M&H's, F&W's and oddities like the Remington Eliot 4 barrel, a Moore teat fire, and a Plant. They are relatively inexpensive and one can build a decent collection on a budget. With some scouting around, you can have a fifty or a hundred different guns for the cost of one high ticket SAA Colt. The Colt may be the better investment, but it is not really very interesting. ("When you've seen one SAA, you've seen them all" is pretty much true.)

A recent acquisition was a Deringer; not the single shot pistol but the .32 revolver, of which only about 4000 were made. Cost was $400 in near perfect condition. I posted a picture on one site and was told I was an idiot and that the gun was an S&W. (Flayderman 8A-050, by the way.)


mega twin
October 30, 2008, 05:46 AM
I guess i have a cavier taste on a bean dip budget:) Thanks for your help!