An Interesting S & W revolver

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  • An Interesting S & W revolver

    G'day guys, just thought I share my rather interesting S & W revolver.
    The revolver started out it's life as a result of an order placed by the British Government, with S&W, just prior to the beginning of WW2.
    Tthe revolver was the M & P model in 38 S&W caliber.
    I believe,that some 50 000 were ordered.
    At the end of the war, when they were returned to 'stores' BSA converted most into .22lr caliber, and this one is one of those conversions.
    As you can see, BSA added 6' barrel, raised front sight and fully adjustable rear sight and also, sleeved the cylinder with .22 inserts, and left everything else standard.
    You can see the British proof marks all over the revolver.




    The most important thing in life is not knowing everything, it's having the phone number of somebody who does!

  • #2
    Very interesting indeed. Do you have any pics of the rear of the cylinder? Is the firing pin offset to hit the rim or does it strike central?

    Thanks,

    Oddball

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    • #3
      Oddball,
      The firing pin strikes high at about 10 o'clock on the rim of the case, due to the inserts in the cylinder.
      BSA even left the rear of the inserts, protrude, about 1mm above the cylinder.
      Anyway, I'll post some more photos tomorrow.
      Cheers.
      The most important thing in life is not knowing everything, it's having the phone number of somebody who does!

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        Originally posted by retired" post=9258
        Oddball,
        The firing pin strikes high at about 10 o'clock on the rim of the case, due to the inserts in the cylinder.
        BSA even left the rear of the inserts, protrude, about 1mm above the cylinder.
        Anyway, I'll post some more photos tomorrow.
        Cheers.
        That would be appreciated.

        Thanks,

        Oddball

    • #4
      Nice gun mate I like how you got the story behind the gun to, make it more intriguing.
      Love your country, love your family, love your sport.

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      • retired
        retired commented
        Editing a comment
        thanks mate, there is a great s&w board in the States and it was through them how I found out about the history of the handgun.

    • #5
      ok guys, some photos of the front and rear of the cylinder, shows how BSA modified it from 38 s&w cal to .22lr.
      You can even see the sn of the revolver on the rear of the cylinder.



      The most important thing in life is not knowing everything, it's having the phone number of somebody who does!

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        Originally posted by retired" post=9989
        ok guys, some photos of the front and rear of the cylinder, shows how BSA modified it from 38 s&w cal to .22lr.
        You can even see the sn of the revolver on the rear of the cylinder.



        That is a lot of work converting it to 22 cal. The extractor is a big job, maybe a K frame 22 one of the era.

        Any chance of a pic of the hammer, cocked, and the breech face?

        Thanks,

        Oddball

    • #6
      No problem, here they are.


      Like you said, a lot of work had gone into the revolver to change the caliber, but I guess, when you are stuck with few thousand of them, a factory geared up to the max, for wartime production, might as well keep few more people employed after the war and do the conversions.
      From what I found out, they were then sold back on the American market.
      The most important thing in life is not knowing everything, it's having the phone number of somebody who does!

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        Originally posted by retired" post=10377
        No problem, here they are.


        Like you said, a lot of work had gone into the revolver to change the caliber, but I guess, when you are stuck with few thousand of them, a factory geared up to the max, for wartime production, might as well keep few more people employed after the war and do the conversions.
        From what I found out, they were then sold back on the American market.
        retired,
        Thankyou very much for providing the pics, my curiosity is now filled, and that breech face modification, and firing pin modification are also quite a lot of work from the standard.

        I have learned a lot from this thread, thankyou.

        Oddball

    • #7
      Is that sight an early S&W target? Just doesn't look right (close,but not right) may be because it isn't recessed.

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      • retired
        retired commented
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        No mate,
        At the end of the WW2, BSA factory in England, got all the surplus 38S&W M&P model revolvers and converted them into what you see.
        Beats just destroying them.

    • #8
      Certainly does beat destroying them, fantastic that you have one, retired.



      Is it a Collectors piece or have you shot it?

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      • sportco
        sportco commented
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        After the war the Americans bought a lot back from the Brits, drilled the chambers a bit deeper and sold them as .38 Specials which is the calibre the Yanks chambered this revolver in. They were not very accurate as the <38 Special projectile at about .357 is smaller than the .38 S&W cartridge that the commonwealth forces ordered. They retained the original barrels which were reamed for .361 or .362 projectiles. Your revolver looks to be one of the later production revolvers named the Victory revolver. They were fitted with plain walnut grips where as the earlier commonwealth orders were supplied with the civilian chequered grips containing the silver S&W medallion. I have fired a friends pre Victory .38S7W calibre revolver and they are a joy to shoot Not potent but nice. See below.
        Click image for larger version

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        Click image for larger version

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      • retired
        retired commented
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        Collectors piece, but our collector's club has a scheduled once a year shoot, coming up, so will shoot it.
        Can't wait.

    • #9
      Hey I think we can stand to see it twice sportco lol

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        I have both, 1 in 22 wwith target sights at the read and the 38S&W which has been registered as a legitimate 38 / 9mm for ICORE using moonclips in 9mm. not profound compared to a 689 or similar but it was dad's and I really didn't want to get rid of it.
        The Victory model was chambered in 38 Special in WW2 and have seen some some anecdotal evidence that some special forces groups had them in 357 magnum. This is a light weight gun and bounces around with a stout 9mm load, a hot 357 mag would not be fun.
        The 38S&W is not great on the 9mm cases but hell a few times a year is worth it.
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