Smith And Wesson Forums banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am the new owner of a Model 38 that has what I believe to be ivory stocks. One stock panel has a crack across the stock at the escutcheon, probably caused by over- tightening the stock screw. It doesn’t appear to go all the way through, and I’d like to keep it that way. I will get a new set of J frame stocks from Altamont, and retire the ivory stocks. Any repair advice is most welcome. I never had a pair of these before and know next to nothing about their care and feeding! Thanks, Hank.
469353
469354
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,307 Posts
Not sure how to stop the crack, soeone else may help you with that. But, if they were mine, I would fit a spacer between them to prevent overtightening.

Kevin
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, Kevin. In reading my 4th ed of SCSW, I’m wondering if these are factory ivory. The absence of stock circles on the back of medallions makes me think aftermarket stocks. Any ideas?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
247 Posts
My guess would be that the stocks are aftermarket. Ivory's kinda interesting to work with. Material from the inside of the tusk cuts and ages a bit differently than the stuff on the exterior......the dentin. In my limited experience with the stuff............both really good mammoth and some African E. it is liable to cracking, and especially at stress points. Once split a really nice set of mammoth I made in Alaska due to my stupidly placing the grip screw escutcheons just a bit wrong........tried 'em at a low minus F and they split like a piece of bamboo!

Still have a set of AE that've held up well on my old M/39, but I again botch the job by using a chunk of exterior stuff, and that wound up with splits just as you display. Dunno what the cure is, but mine have been that way since about 1970 & are still usable.

Twere it me, I'd use 'em. Things were designed and intended to be on somethin' that goes bang anyhow. !00 years and you ain't gonna know the difference!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,762 Posts
It wasn't ivory (it was, in fact bakelite P.38 grips), but I've done a repair on the inside of grips with very thin very slow setting epoxy. Some is thin enough to wick into the cracks while still liquid, and then set inside the crack without any expansion.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
304 Posts
Just for thoughts, paleobond.com sells specialty cyanoacrylics used in repairing bone, Horn, mammoth ivory, elephant ivory and other exotic impermeable and semipermeable material. Look them up and call them, see what they have to say. Fellow who began the company was an avid fossil hunter and was horrified at the limited kit of preservatives paleontologists had to work with.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Mrerick, I took your part with the slow setting epoxy. I applied a thin coat and set it aside. I can see where the glue has settled down into the crack. I’m gonna give it several days to fully set. Do you have any idea about factory vs aftermarket? Thanks,Hank.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Strawhat , headed to Lowe’s to get some spacers this wknd. Thanks! Hank
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,762 Posts
Sorry, no experience with Ivory grips (original or otherwise). I don't know how they would be expected to be marked, or if the frame got a marking.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Frame is marked with an “N” for the factory nickel, but there’s no info that I could find in the 4th ed of SCSW on any markings for ivory . There is a “P” on the frame. No idea what that means. Thanks for your help, Hank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,307 Posts
You might go to the Blue forum and search for answers. I do not believe those are factory, strictly a gut feeling. I have one pair of ivory stocks, non factory, so my feeling is based on... nothing.

Mother of pearl stocks were quite popular and S&W made sure to use only the finest, thickest material for the stocks they produced. They made sure to put the S&W medallion in each stock to prove its origin.

Having said that, here is a photo of many stocks with the medallion and none of them are factory!

469579


Kevin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,186 Posts
The “cracks” you refer to on ivory is called checking. It cannot be stopped or fixed to my knowledge. All ivory and exotic handles are subject to checking. I suppose one could try to seal it but I wouldn’t. Your grips look like fossil walrus ivory to me. They are beautiful. i don’t have any ivory or walrus gun grips but I have a few knives with some.
469582
469583
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,637 Posts
The “cracks” you refer to on ivory is called checking. It cannot be stopped or fixed to my knowledge. All ivory and exotic handles are subject to checking. I suppose one could try to seal it but I wouldn’t. Your grips look like fossil walrus ivory to me. They are beautiful. i don’t have any ivory or walrus gun grips but I have a few knives with some.
View attachment 469582 View attachment 469583
Those are nice blades
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the help, Tenn. What I’m seeing is an actual crack that’s running through the screw escutcheon laterally across the stock panel. There is some checking around the S&W medallions, as well as near the butt. I see that as normal. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to get a good picture. I’ll try tomorrow in some good light. Hank
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
StrawHat, can you please post your photo of the ivory stocks? Particularly the inside. Thanks, Hank.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
792 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Kevin-Thanks! Are yours elephant ivory? I don’t have any idea how to tell the difference. Tennsharpshooter thought they might be fossil walrus ivory. That’s the best info I have at present. Thank y’all for the help! An entirely new arena for me. Hank
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top