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Discussion Starter #1
I want to start what I hope to be a continuing thread. I will post a particular double action revolver that has been a police belt carry weapon and perhaps expound on it, such as what police agency used it
and perhaps why. I'd like to keep to double action revolvers exclusively.

It would be easy to start with the ubiquitous S&W Military & Police/ model 10/model 13. This police standard was used in so many guises such as barrel length, calibres, finishes, including stainless as well as square or round butt and double action only, that it could be a thread in itself.


Instead I will start with the Colt New Service. This famed behemouth revolver earned it's reputation with the Canadian Mounted Police, the
New York State Police, the Border Patrol and I understand the Texas Highway Patrol.

There were probably many other police departments who also chose the New Service - for there was an intimidation factor ascribed to such a large revolver.

This particular New Service was never a law enforcement weapon, it was actually a RAF pilot or aircrewman's sidearm during WW-2. It was originally in 455 Eley, but I had it chambered for 45 Colt.

If you know of a police department that issued a specific revolver or specified a calibre, or a custom built revolver for their department, how about checking in and letting the rest of us know about it. . .As always pictures appreciated, but not required.

Hank
 

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Well here are a few M&Ps from a NYC cop, he purchased them brand new in 1954 and carried them through out his career. My brother and I was supposed to get them from his son. I will not go into details here, but the were both destroyed, broke my heart. tnbtlaa nbvoALO



 

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This Model 66-1 in it's original box was the on duty sidearm of a NH State Police trooper back in it's day. It has a polished action, NHSP stamped in to the frame on the left side just below the cylinder, and it's most unusual feature is this factory lanyard loop, a special order request by this now retired trooper. I purchased 2 of his duty guns, the other being a 686 no dash 4".
Great thread subject, I hope to see plenty more guns. I would love to see one of those prewar M&Ps issued to the NY State Dept of Conservation, so marked on the back strap.
 

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I came on the job 4/5/1982 and was given a slightly worn heavy barrel model 10,I shot thousands of rounds through it at the academy [ approx 2500 ] and then carried it for a few more years [ and THOUSANDS more rounds ] before buying an 'L' frame for duty use .I was allowed to buy the HB S&W 10 and still use it as a house gun,still shoots better than I can !.Sorry but still working on the pic posting.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Scaatylobo 258: Did your department have general orders on the type 38 special ammo for duty, or any restictions on same?

Early on, except reloads, if it was 38 special you could stuff it in your cylinder. Some of the informed guys carried Super Vels, department issue was standard round nose lead.

Later, when the FBI +P, 158 grain lead hollowpoints became available, this was all the general orders permitted, even if carrying a 357 magnum; I carried a 4 inch 686. - That placed the rule sometime after 1980.

Hank
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
The Colt I'm posting today is a true police veteran. It is a Colt Trooper in 38 Special. It has a very worn nickel finnish and rather shabby Pachmyer grips. The former owner had attached a trigger shoe.

The man who owned this Trooper was a life long lawman. He had started his policing in the most northwestern County in Pennsylvania
back when Dillinger was still on the loose.

I knew him when he was in his 80's, still very active and running his own security company. He had retired from the Broward County (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Sheriff's Office as a detective.

He was providing security for our aircraft and would usually stop in my office and regale me with some of his law enforcement escapades, which I wish I had written down, or recorded some, as he was humerous. One day he walked in and gave me his Colt, said he didn't have anybody to leave it too and wanted me to have it. . .Don't judge it by it's appearance, it is very accurate.
 

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Here's a cop gun with an unusual story behind it. This Model 15-3 belonged to the GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) in the early '70s. It started out as a snub but had the longer barrel put on by the GBI's armorer so it could be used in competition shooting. There were 5 of these guns made up for that purpose. In those days, the GBI had some agents who formed a competitive shooting team. I've been told they were pretty good, too.

I sure wish I could find the other four revolvers..

Bottom pic is of the GBI markings on the left side of the frame, below the cylinder. And, yes.. it's a very sweet shooter.

ps: sorry to all who already know this story. I almost didn't post since most of you have seen this before. :oops:



 

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Carl... I could never see that baby too much! A great story that you should be proud to own a piece of! I think I know someone who used to live there too, but for the life of me can't figure out who!!!
 

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Carl, you get tired of talking/showing pictures of the beat up ole 38, there is a spot around here it could hang out in :D
My brother {Phoenix PD} still kicks himself for not buying his Model 64 for $100 when they went to Glocks
 

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Dig the duct tape there Giz :lol:
 
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Chris,

It's old style friction tape...a very custom touch.

But friction tape doesn't hold fingerprints.... ;)

giz
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Make no mistake about it there was and still may be a divison in handgunners who favor the Colt and those that favor the Smith & Wesson. There were police agencies who favored Colt, the New York State Police was from their inception, I believe 1917 until and actually after they had to replace their aging 45 New Service revolvers in the mid 50's.

NYSP then adopted the Colt Official Police 38 special revolver with a six inch barrel and then later the Official Police with a 4 inch barrel. That state police agency switched to 357 magnums and were responsible for a special order of military and police revolver from S&W with a heavy 4 inch barrel, we now know as the model 13.

The revolver I have in mind for today's post is Colt's top of the line - Colt Python. Ballyhooed as the Rolls Royce of 357's when introduced in 1955, this precision built 357 found favor with discerning handgunners, but it was expensive. - This may have hurt police sales.

The Colorado Highway Patrol issued 4" barrel blue Pythons to their officers. The Georgia State Patrol also issued Pythons, not sure of barrel length or finish. The Florida Highway Patrol, also for some years a Colt patron, issued Pythons,; the one I saw was either a nickel finish or bright stainless.

In the department I was associated with, most officers bought their own weapons and in our district I only saw two officers carry 4 inch, nickel Pythons.

It was rare when you found a Python that wasn't accurate, my partner had one and he finally swapped it for one of the first 686's when available sometime in post 1980.



This is a nickel finish Python made in 1977, and it has lived up to it's reputation. If you fellas know of any other police agencies or officers who used the Python, let us know.
 

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This model 67 .38 special was the first K frame Stainless revolver that I saw and I purchaed it immediately. When I received my present Department Appointment in 1974 this was the revolver on my uniform for a couple years between my model 58 (too heavy) and model 39-2 9mm.(an improvement in firepower) At this time there was no standard required firearm all were officer provided. In 1979 a new Chief layed down a standard for Uniform wear. A modern DA revolver 38/357 4" to 6" barrel to carry issued 38 Special rounds so the 39-2 stayed home and the model 67 got another couple years of duty carry until another Chief issued.357 Magnum AND 38 Special. A model 19-2 got the duty for another couple years until we changed Uniforms and I bought a new model 686 to go with the new spiffy Uniform. It was not until 1992 when the department issued a handgun the Sig Sauer P228 9mm.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
A cop gun that seems to be popular with some collectors is the 38/44 HD, which is the subject of this post. I did a little reading on the Heavy Duty S&W and was surprised to learn that initial 38/44 loads actually meet the current 357 factory ballistics and in some cases exceed them; the exception being the hot 125 grain factory loads.

I'm sure forum members are familiar with the development of the 38/44 which came out in 1930 and was the gun which led to the 357 Magnums birth in 1935.

A police gun from it's inception, the 38/44 Heavy Duty revolver found favor with many police departments, in particular state police and highway patrol agencies. Such was the Kansas Highway Patrol that issued them until 1977-78 when a replacement with the
S&W Model 66 was done.

The Colorado Highway Patrol carried the five inch barrel model, with Colo. Highway Patrol marked on the front strap. The Washington State Patrol ordered their HD's with a six and a half inch barrel. The Louisiana State Police had theirs' issued with a four inch barrel.

These new (at the beginning of the Depression era) powerful revolvers
were getting in the hands of lawmen just in time to meet the challenge of that era's bank robbers; the likes of Dillinger, Pretty Boy Floyd, Baby Face Nelson and Bonnie and Clyde and many other wanna-be desparados.



The two five inch barrel 38/44 HD's pictured were from 1937 (S&W Grips) and 1939 (Stag Grips). The holster is a 1970 Mixson swivel holster for the five inch N-frame S&W.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Thanks for the post, Kevin. I'd heard that the THP had S&W Highway Patrolman revolvers. When discussing police revolvers and not discussing the Highway Patrolman, would be a gross oversight.

I also heard scuttlebutt that the THP wasn't quite satisfied with the 45 autos that replaced the the 357 Highway Patrolman. The story I got was the THP went looking for an auto pistol that had the same stopping power as the 125 grain JHP 357 magnum and chose the Sig Saur in 357 Sig. . .The report I heard was they were satisfied with the 357 Sig.

I'll throw in a picture of an old Highway Patrolman (pre mod 28), it's had hard service and shows it, so not as pretty as the one you have in your post - But if I do my part, it will still lay the shots in there.

 

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Well, we went to the Sig about 15 years ago. Each Troop could choose either .45 or 9mm. I went with the P220 and it stood me in good stead one bright February morning.

After a couple of years they got concerned with uniformity and tested and we now carry the P226 DAK in .357 Sig. I have no complaints except for I like DA for the first shot and single there after so the DAK is not my cup of tea. But hey, it's free, right?

I purchased my P220 after it was retired (my 28 as well) but I won't be buying the P226 DAK. I do like our new Bushmaster M4s though. I may buy it when I retire if I'm through paying off my 1st generation SAA! fhfjjjj
 
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