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  1. #1
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    Smith and Wesson D.A. 45

    I inherited a Smith and Wesson D.A. 45 with Patent dates of December, 1901, September 1906, and September 1909 stamped on the barrel. I know it was issued to an army officer who served on the Western Front in Pershings Expedtionary Force of WWI. He gave it to me many years ago and I have kept it in good condition. Stamped on the bottom of the pistol handle underneath the lanyard clasp is the following: U.S. Army Model 1917, Number 17628.
    I am somewhat unfamiliar with pistols and am trying to find an approximate worth of this firearm.

    Val

  2. #2
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    Re: Smith and Wesson D.A. 45

    If it has the original finish, grips, lanyard, accessories such as a holster and moon clip pouch, and is in really good mechanical shape, it is worth well over $500 and maybe even over $1K to a collector.
    I've been looking for one as a shooter and they aren't cheap.
    Collector grades probably shouldn't be shot just to maintain their high value.

  3. #3
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    I was wondering if someone could help me with a fair value for a Smith and Wesson D.A. 45 revolver. Serial No. 177525Name:  DSCN0076.jpg
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  4. #4
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    Val,

    Condition is everything. Can you post some pics of your historic revolver?

    LeBonier,

    That's a nice looking gun, but it appears to be re-finished, destroying any "collecter" value. If I came across this revolver, in a buying mood, I would offer, MAYBE 4 bills.

    Mike

  5. #5
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    Not sure if it's refinished, but, the grips appear to overlap the front of the gripframe. In any case.....you've got a great historic revolver. Bob

  6. #6
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    LeBonier,

    Good News: What you have is what is known as a "1917 Commercial". These were guns not built for army issue, but rather sold through "Commercial" channels to the public. Specifications are similar to the 1917 US Martial Revolver. There were not very many of these revolvers made, certainly far fewer than the approximately 150,000 US Army issued 1917's and re therefore collectible.

    Ban News: Given that the hammer and trigger are blued yours is certainly refinished. This really hurts it's interest to collectors and puts your gun in the "shooter" class, albeit a very nice shooter...

    I would put it's resale value at around $350 or so.

    Drew
    Last edited by Sebago Son; 07-11-2011 at 05:39 PM.
    ".... Evil Flourishes When Good Men Do Nothing...."

  7. #7
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    Thank you all for the info. Any idea of when the gun was made, and possibly when it was refinished? Also, if I use it as a shooter, do I need a "moon clip" and if so, where would I find one?

  8. #8
    DCW
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBonier View Post
    Thank you all for the info. Any idea of when the gun was made, and possibly when it was refinished? Also, if I use it as a shooter, do I need a "moon clip" and if so, where would I find one?
    There were several commercial models issued with serial numbers in the 177xxx-178xxx range. They seem to have shipped in the vicinity of 1924-25. The frames may have been made earlier for subsequent assembly. In all their variations, the 1917 .45s have a complicated start and stop history from 1917 through the late 1940s. The factory often put coded date stamps on guns that they refinished, but this is not a factory refinish; S&W would never have blued the hammer and trigger. So it's probably impossible to know the date it was refinished.

    Because the chambers are shouldered, you don't need moon clips to shoot your 1917. Just drop the ACP rounds into the chambers and they will headspace properly. But the ejector won't work, so you will need to poke them out of the chambers from the front with a pencil or dowel. (Or maybe just lift them out with a fingernail in the extractor groove, if you're lucky.)

    Just shoot regular .45 ACP ball ammo. Don't go for the +P stuff, which is a little hot for these old frames. Your gun wouldn't spontaneously disassemble itself on you, but the extra pressure could stretch the prewar steel a little and maybe even bulge a chamber.
    Last edited by DCW; 07-13-2011 at 06:50 PM. Reason: typo
    David Wilson
    S&WCA No. 2206 / SWHF Founding Member No. 144 / NRA Life Member

  9. #9
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    Awesome info. Thanks much.

  10. #10
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    Unhappy S&W M1917 Single AND double action?

    Is the S&W M1917 45 Revolver double and single action?

    I have a S&W M1917 45 Revolver and it was double and single action. I could pull the trigger with the hammer forward for the heavy double action or pull the hammer to the rear for a super light single action shot. I gave the gun to a guy to do some work on it to lighten the double action trigger pull and when I got it back the double action was lighter but the single action was gone. I couldn't lock the hammer to the rear anymore. After pulling the hammer back a bit it finally started catching but it's all jacked up when I try single action now. He is insisting that it is only a Double action pistol and that it was never supposed to be double and single action. Please someone who knows what they are talking about help me, is the S&W US Army M1917 45 Revolver double and single action? I'm pretty upset over my gun right now and really need to know for sure.

    Thanks!


 

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