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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,
I recently inherited a few weapons from my father. His favorite was this S&W (which I remember shooting as a kid many years ago, and it is a real 'hand-cannon'!). I'm hoping to gather some info on the gun from you experts if possible - it would be greatly appreciated as I plan to carry this as well and pass it to my son when the time comes. If it helps my father told a story of buying this gun from his friend who was an FBI agent decades ago. The story goes that the FBI switched to .45 autos and my Dad's friend no longer needed this Smith - maybe this model can lend some credence to that account?
Here is what I have (please see attached photos as well):
SN# 45750
barrel ingraved: 38 S&W Special CTG
inside the cylander arm: 3669 -not sure what that means
checkered grips
Barrel is 2" long

This pistol is heavy and solid and in great condition. It is .357 magnum.



Thanks for any insight you may be able to offer.

Mike Harrison
 

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I think we're dealing a modified revolver..........I'd like to see the right side. Is there a s/n on the face of the cylinder and/or under the extractor star? Is anything stamped inside the ejector shroud. Can you remove the grips and see if anything is stamped on the grip frame? The hammer is from a long throw action. The Barrel seems shortened (possibly changed) and the front sight has been modified.......the grip/stock panels don't look factory. We need more info to help you...........lot of detail pictures too.

Certainly an interesting piece...................

BTW, Welcome to the forum.

Regards,

Geezer
 

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I’m confused also. The front and rear sights are not ringing a bell for me. You stated the barrel is marked 38 Smith & Wesson Special Ctg but the barrel has an underlug. That’s confusing to me. It appears that it’s a pre model # frame and if it’s a mismarked barrel for the caliber and it’s truly a 357 magnum, it should have rebated or recessed chambers.

Would you post phots of the front and rear sights? Some of the experts will be along shortly to unravel this.

Nice looking revolver.

Joe
 

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I also think the barrel doesn't look right. As far as the bore diameter, a 38 special and 357 magnum have the same size. The difference would be the cylinder. S&W marks the guns caliber on the barrel, so the barrel came from a 38 special, but the rest of the gun must have been a 357 magnum. The rear sight is different from any S&W I have ever seen, as well as the front sight.
I wonder if the barrel is from an old 38-44 Heavy duty, with a rib/ front sight having been custom made, along with the rear sight?. That would explain the underlug on a 38 special barrel
 

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I inherited this one from my dad and it's a 'cannon', 44RM. He wore it when out patrolling the property. Got the holster as well. A bit 'battle worn' but it's a keepsake for me and it shoots just fine. I've dropped a couple deer with it. Like dad, like son, always handloads.

View attachment 328947
 

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Three questions, two for the experts and another for the OP:

1. Can a 38 cylinder be bored longer to accept a .357 cartridge without other modifications or another cylinder altogether?
2. Even with a replaced .357 cylinder, would it fit into a 38 frame?
3. For the OP, are you sure you shot .357 or just 'hot' 38 loads that were close to .357 power with your dad?
 

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I suspect you have a 38/44 with shortened barrel, modified sights and lengthened cylinder holes to facilitate .357 length cartridges. The s/n in the extractor shroud matched the frame number. It's an old style long throw action with a one line address stamped on the right side of the frame. Does the cylinder face have a s/n? What is stamped on the grip frame under the grips/stocks?

**EDIT** I just saw your additional pictures and can't see a serial number on tje cylinder face.......how about under the extractor star (any numbers)? **RE-EDIT** Later pictures do show a matching number on the cylinder and barrel.

IMPORTANT........anything stamped under the grip panels on the grip frame?


Geezer
 
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