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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I just wanted to share my newest addition to my S&W 'collection'. I never actively collected S&W's but a model 10-5 was my very first gun and I've been a Smith guy ever since. So when I had the chance to pick this up, I jumped on it. Special thanks for a fellow member for offering this.

Revolver Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory

Revolver Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory


The serial number matches on the frame, cylinder, and barrel. It has a flaming bomb on the butt along with , what I believe to be, and inspectors mark of 'W.B.' and 'UNITED STATES PROPERTY' on the top strap.
Unfortunately, it does have an import mark but its import back into the country is a part of the history so Im OK with it. It is still in the original .38 S&W cartridge.
Watch Household hardware Close-up Metal Fashion accessory

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Watch Material property Tints and shades Bicycle part Electric blue

Material property Electric blue Auto part Revolver Fashion accessory


Finally, this is marked on the back-strap 'NZ 4944' which I believe is New Zealand.
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Anyway, just wanted to share my excitement to own one of these and if anyone had any further information, or potential sources of info for these such as specific books, etc., I'd be very grateful for any help.


-Mike

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Very nice example!

I wish all import markings had been as discretely applied.
 

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There is an earlier post on 'Canadian Lend-Lease Smith and Wesson 38/200 revolver', 04/08/2021, which attaches a letter from S&W listing the total numbers contracted/purchased by the Commonwealth countries and noting Lend Lease examples bear the markings "United States Property".
Maybe one of the Kiwi contributors can chip in regarding the use by NZ.
 

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Awesome!

I have a N^Z as well, same markings on the heel too (W.B. & flaming bomb). Mine is just shy of a Victory model.

They are quite uncommon, congratulations & welcome to the club!

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
There is an earlier post on 'Canadian Lend-Lease Smith and Wesson 38/200 revolver', 04/08/2021, which attaches a letter from S&W listing the total numbers contracted/purchased by the Commonwealth countries and noting Lend Lease examples bear the markings "United States Property".
Maybe one of the Kiwi contributors can chip in regarding the use by NZ.
Thanks, would be great so see that information. I've already send in for my letter for this one but I know it will take a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
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Nice example and thanks for sharing. I really like the 5" barrel length.
Mine's in the 990,000's so just squeaking in before that 1M mark as well.
Post-Pearl (Harbor) pre-Victory
That's what these are known as.

It was a brief window, they have a bit of a following.

It's a really nice example.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Post-Pearl (Harbor) pre-Victory
That's what these are known as.

It was a brief window, they have a bit of a following.

It's a really nice example.
DisasterDog, thanks for this. I really appreciate you sharing your knowledge on these. I learn more and more everyday and part of what I really enjoy about this.
 
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The letter was of particular interest to me, as this is one of the Australian pre-lend lease examples, FTR53 - #834353 (1941).
Type in the Search Community, see above, the wording shown in 'parenthesis' in my earlier post to get up the particular item.
Type View attachment 3881525
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you! Good information here.
I sent in for my LOA but know it will be a while, especially these days, but its exciting and part of the fun (to me anyway). Cant wait to see what information it has to share.
 
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TeamLamont:

You have an interesting pre-Victory (aka British Service Revolver) there.

From the Victory Model Database I can tell you that your revolver likely shipped in the May, 1942 time frame. It was shipped as a Lend Lease item to the Hartford Ordnance District in Springfield, Mass.

The original finish on guns in this range was Black Magic. Although I would need to eyeball it to be certain I suspect from your photos that your revolver has been refinished. That would not be unusual as the New Zealand Smiths saw a lot of action in North Africa and Italy during WW2 and most unrefinished examples observed today have considerable finish wear.

The import marking indicates that it was imported back into the USA post-1968 by Century Arms, Inc. That is somewhat unusual as the great bulk of the NZ pre-Victories/Victories seen in the USA today were imported by Navy Arms of New Jersey.

It is also very unusual that "VICTORY" is also stamped on the butt strap. Indeed, of the thousands of guns recorded in the Database this is the first example so marked. Just why Century felt compelled to add that marking is a mystery.

You might want to check the inside of the right grip panel to see if the number stamped there matches the butt serial number.

You mentioned that you had already submitted a request for a historical letter on your revolver. That is fortunate because starting September 27 the S&W Historical Foundation has instituted a temporary moratorium on letters. There is a significant backlog of letter requests so it was thought that imposing a halt on new letters would allow the backlog to be cleared up. New letter requests will be rejected until January 24, 2022.

Finally, you asked for advice on published sources of information. Far and away the best source is Charlie Pate's book on U.S. Secondary Handguns of WWII which includes much information on the NZ guns. It is in print and available from Amazon and other gun book sellers. See image below.

I hope this information has been helpful to you.

Regards,
Charlie Flick

 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
TeamLamont:

You have an interesting pre-Victory (aka British Service Revolver) there.
This is great information, thank you! As it happens, I just found this book at a yard sale and picked it up. I usually pass on the generalized books but decided to pick this up and am glad I did.

I hope my LOA got in before the deadline...I guess I'll find out soon enough.

I will check under the grip this evening and post a reply.

Thank you for taking time to type out all this very useful and specific information. I will see if I can get a better shot of the overall finish. I too had wondered if it was refinished but hadn't actually seen the 'black magic' finish in person before.

Thanks again!

-MTL
 
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