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Old May 12, 2016, 11:35 AM   #1
mahd776
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Iver Johnson info wanted.

Does anyone have a way to tell me what year a Iver Johnson revolver I recently aquired was manufactured. On top of barrel IVER JOHNSON ARMS AND CYCLE WORKS. FITCHBURG MASS USA both lines followed by a star. On butt PAT NOV 17,08 and under that PAT PENDING. Under left grip G24643. Its a Safety hammer gun. Dual post lock on top. Five shot cylinder 32 caliber. Finish was blue fading to a brown patina overall. Owl grips with owl looking at you. Any idea 32 long or short? Neat little revolver. Locks up pretty tight with a bit of cylinder play but shootable I think. Less than a $100.00 in it.
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Old May 12, 2016, 12:11 PM   #2
T. O'Heir
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It's most likely a .32 S&W. IJ made a lot of 'em.
Sadly, there isn't a great deal written about early IJ stuff. It's one area of collecting that is decidedly neglected. Have a DA side loader myself.
There is some info here though.
http://www.guns.com/2013/04/20/iver-...ontradictions/
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Old May 12, 2016, 01:09 PM   #3
James K
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G24643 is a small frame top-break in .32 S&W.* It was made in 1917 and was made for smokeless powder.

This is from the late Bill Goforth's book, Iver Johnson Arms & Cycle Works Firearms, 1871-1993 which I strongly recommend to anyone interested in IJ firearms.

*There are only .32 S&W and .32 S&W Long; the former is sometimes called ".32 S&W Short", but technically there is no such thing.

Jim
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Old May 12, 2016, 02:15 PM   #4
carguychris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James K
[.32 S&W] is sometimes called ".32 S&W Short", but technically there is no such thing.
Using the ".32 Short" nomenclature also risks confusion with .32 Short Colt, an obscure cartridge which is NOT the same as .32 S&W, and AFAIK was very seldom used by any gunmaker other than Colt itself.

IIRC .32 Short Colt is slightly smaller and therefore can be chambered in .32 S&W firearms, but firing it will result in mediocre-to-indifferent accuracy and the occasional split or bulged case, and since it's no less rare or expensive than the similarly obsolescent .32 S&W, there's no good reason to use it.

Also, mandatory warning statement: DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT FIRE .32 ACP / .32 AUTO / 7.65 BROWNING in this gun. It is NOT SAFE regardless of what any old codger hanging around at the gun store tells you. Most solid-frame .32 Long revolvers can safely fire it—albeit with mediocre accuracy—but the same is NOT true of top-breaks.
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Old May 12, 2016, 02:35 PM   #5
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Thanks so very much! Was hoping someone with that book would respond. Just the info I was wanting!
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Old May 15, 2016, 01:53 PM   #6
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IJ top break

I have a similar pistol I would like to shoot. I would like to get the manufacture date and find out if I need to load black powder for it? S/N is S721xx thanks for the help.
Tim
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Old May 15, 2016, 04:22 PM   #7
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I had one with an exposed hammer years back. I picked it up at a flea market years back because it had an odd lock-up on the top. I have a feeling you could date a lot of the older stuff just by the changes on them.
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Old May 15, 2016, 04:41 PM   #8
James K
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Again per Goforth, S721xx is also a small frame .32, and would have been made in 1908, just before the change to smokeless powder models.

Jim
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Old May 15, 2016, 06:09 PM   #9
timgd
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IJ top break

I was afraid that would be the case. I have 50 rounds of vintage rem. 38 s&w, I can run it thru my 38 s&w long official police or just buy some starline brass. Anyway Jim, thanks agin for the information and the quick response.
Tim
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Old May 15, 2016, 10:55 PM   #10
James K
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The .38 S&W has no "short or long"; there is only the .38 S&W. The .38 S&W has a larger diameter case than the .38 Long/Short Colt, .38 Special, and .357 Magnum, all of which grew out of the old .38 Short Colt. So .38 S&W usually won't fit in a revolver made for any of the other cartridges.

Many Colt revolvers were made for the .38 S&W, but Colt called the round the .38 Colt Police or .38 Colt New Police, being reluctant to put "S&W" on their guns. But if your Colt OP is made for the .38 Special, which it probably is, .38 S&W won't fit.

Jim
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Old May 16, 2016, 03:46 PM   #11
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IJ top break

I need to read befor I hit submit reply. I meant to say 50 rounds of .32 s&w. I seem to gravitate towards odd ball/obsolete calibers.
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Old May 16, 2016, 07:04 PM   #12
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A lot of folks consider all .32's and all .38's except .357 Magnum to be useless and obsolete, barely capable of bumping off intrusive mosquitoes. The public does not seem to agree.

Jim
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Old May 16, 2016, 07:37 PM   #13
timgd
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I understand that. That is why I spend most of my time reading the C&R forum instead of following the new stuff! I burned out on black plastic guns around 1969.
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Old May 18, 2016, 07:16 AM   #14
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Was U.S. Revolver company and Iver Johnson affiliated?
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Old May 18, 2016, 09:32 AM   #15
James K
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When Iver Johnson came out with the third model (smokeless powder) safety revolver in 1909, they formed the U.S. Revolver company to sell guns made from leftover parts of older models. The U.S. brand guns did not have the transfer bar of the regular IJ line. As it happened, the U.S. brand became popular and IJ continued making them up to 1935.

The U.S. brand revolvers were sold only through mail order companies and were not carried in the IJ catalog, while the higher quality IJ brand guns were cataloged and sold only through distributors. Oddly, the price differential was not great; the U.S. gun retailed at only a little less than the IJ line.

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