H&R 32 cal.

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by kbakes, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    My father just recently came across a top break hammerless .32cal marked as follows, Harrington & Richardson Oct. 4 87, Apr. 2 95, Apr. 7 96 and the s# is 28128.
    Would this be a small frame .32 1st model, 1899-1904??? If so are there any modern rounds that it can fire in place of black powder and is there any other info that im missing? Im new at this but im going to say the bluing is maybe 50 to 60% and it has wood grips with finger and thumb inlays in them!!! Also looking for any value ranges...

    Thank you

    Kory
  2. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    Kbakes,
    Welcome to the forum - latest research agrees with your findings - You have a SMALL FRAME HAMMERLESS 1st Model 1st Variation 1899 - 1903. Serial number range appears to run up to around 80K. Your serial number is about 1/3 of the way there - so yours was probably made 1900 - 01. Blue finish is an option and seen on probably less than 10% of these - worth a bit more to collectors. Would need to see the grip panels to tell if they're original - standard is molded, black hard rubber with "target logo". Factory checkered walnut would bring a large premium to collectors. If, as you say, the blued finish is 50 - 60% retained - you gun would fall into the lower end of collectible an be worth somewhere in the $100 - $125 current RETAIL range.
    As to ammo: your gun was made during the H&R black powder capable era - change over to smokeless occured in 1905. However- take a look at the star extractor and the standing breech. Some of the later examples - starting around the 20K s/n - are seen to have a "post" or "lug" in the center of the star and a milled recess in the breech face to accomodate that post (see pics). IF yours has that feature - I would like to know - and this is one of the changes H&R made to ALL their hinged frame guns to handle smokeless powder. MY opinion, based upon observation of a number of these - research of records can't be done 'cause there ain't any - is that this MODEL and variation MAY have pioneered H&R's foray into smokeless powder AND that your piece SHOULD be able to handle modern factory loads of .32 S&W cartridges - NOT .32 S&W LONG. Of course, if I am wrong - the gun may be ruined by excessive shooting of those rounds through it. As with ALL older guns - that one is over 100 years old - extreme care should be taken in having it checked out before shooting ANYTHING through it.
    Good luck with your find.

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  3. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    Thank you for all your help!! I will check in to it and definately get back to you...
  4. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    k,
    You're welcome. Looking forward to your "get back"...
  5. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    I am having problems trying to post the pics.. whats the secret?? lol
  6. hrf

    hrf Well-Known Member

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    If you have digital photos on your PC, click on the Go Advanced tab below the reply screen, then under Additional Options click on the Manage Attachments tab, and browse to find and upload your photos.
  7. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    got some in profile
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2011
  8. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    I was only able to get the pics on my profile page, so i guess thats the only place you can view them for now!! Like I said before.. I'm new at this.. lol
  9. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    k.

    Those are very nice wooden grips - but they're not factory original. Look to be custom made. Your extractor star has the "post" in the center - see my original posting for opinion and cautionary statements.
    Always choose the safe way to do things - unless somebody is paying you a huge amount of money to risk your life - just like Uncle Sam did to me.
  10. kbakes

    kbakes New Member

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    Thank you again..
    So what your saying is we could try to shoot it but be darn careful and you are not taking any responsibility for our injurys!!! What is your opinion on the blueing or the exterior condition from what you can see in the pics...


    K
  11. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    Pics are a bit difficult for me to see - blue finish condition can be deceiving depending upon lighting, angles, reflections, etc. but I'd say what I can see is about a 75 -80% gun.
    As to safety of your firearm - yep, you are correct. I have a few hundred older and newer guns and I don't shoot anything older than 1930s. But that's just me - I don't want to wreck one of my collectibles. LOL! Fingers? Fingers? We don't need no stinkin' fingers!

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