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I don't no much about these revolvers is the Smith & Wesson 38 Special it seems to be model number 61905 I'm trying to figure out what exactly it is when it was made how rare it is the serial number is 429874. There's so many comments and replies and stuff on these types of pistols online I'd like to know more precise on when it was made it's also on top of the barrel got Smith & Wesson Springfield Massachusetts USA patented October 8,01 ,December 17,01 ,February 8,08 ,Sept 14,09 ,Dec 9,14 . Really kind of unsure what those numbers stand for but I'll send pictures of the gun in general I've polished it was a little bit of metal polish not too much not too hard just to see what happened and well here's the results please any insight cuz be very appreciated right now cuz I have no one knowledge it is whatsoever thank you respectfully
Revolver Wood Trigger Air gun Gun accessory
Revolver Musical instrument Shotgun Wood Art
Material property Red Gas Household hardware Metal
 

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Welcome to the forums from the Wiregrass! You have a .38 Military & Police, Model 1905, 4th Change from around 1923. The mother-of-pearl grips are aftermarket. Value is around $400-500. The nickel plate can be polished with Flitz, Mother's Mag or other metal polish.
 

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Welcome to the forums from the Wiregrass! You have a .38 Military & Police, Model 1905, 4th Change from around 1923. The mother-of-pearl grips are aftermarket. Value is around $400-500. The nickel plate can be polished with Flitz, Mother's Mag or other metal polish.
Just be sure to remove the furniture first.
 

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Welcome to the forum - that's a really sweet find!

Don't try to polish it too much - you may remove the patina and aging that adds to its value. I use Flitz for mine, the finest grit they have.

To remove the grips (furniture, or stocks) loosen the grip screw just partway - maybe halfway, then gently tap the head of the screw with a small hammer - lightly! This should pop the right panel loose. Remove the screw. If the left panel doesn't pop off, then light taps through the frame to the inside of the left panel should loosen it. Use a dowel or something like the unsharpened end of a new pencil.

Like they said, they are valuable grips, even if aftermarket, and fragile if bumped or twisted. DO NOT PRY OFF. Several light taps are much more preferred than a heavy tap and a busted panel....

To your questions - 61905 is simply an assembly number. S&W would hand-fit the parts before bluing. They blued the guns in large batches, so they would put assembly numbers on major parts first, ensuring they could match up those parts later, after bluing and polishing. For the dates, they refer to 1901, 1908 and so on - patent dates for patents involved in the making of that model fo gun. If nothing else that tells you the gun was made after the latest patent date. Wiregrassguy has given you the shipping year (likely also the manufacture year) and the value of the gun.

It wasn't until 1957-58 that S&W quit referring to their guns by name, and started using Model numbers. They retained the name, like the "Highway Patrolman" also became the Model 28.

If the gun is in as good a shape as it appears, feel free to shoot .38 Special LRN (lead round nose) ammo through it. In about 1975 or so, the ammo specs guys (SAAMI) changed the standard loading specs of ammo to a lower power than previously. This meant manufacturers could make somewhat lighter and cheaper guns for a given caliber. The older and more powerful spec was then called "+P". Only shoot +P ammo in a gun marked for it. Older guns, like yours, don't have quite the metallurgy newer guns do, so while in good shape, may not "appreciate" the stress of +P anymore, even though that's what they were originally designed for. It'd be like running a 1920's car at full throttle...you sure you want to stress it like that?
 
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Flitz or any other polish should be done very infrequently. It IS an abrasive and DOES remove some of the metal.
Polish it ONCE do it by hand and then put some Renaissance Wax on it to preserve the shine.
 
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