H&R Top Brk., Tiny Revolver

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by fuzebox40, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. fuzebox40

    fuzebox40 Active Member

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    Hello friends. Between the half dozen or so I.J's. and H&R's I've gotten my hands on this is the smallest. I'd almost say it was cute but I've never had to look down the ugly end of one. But anyway I'd like to find out whatever I can re: age, value, etc. so I can try to find some parts for it.

    It apears to be missing the little piece behind the trigger (see picture). I think it's called a sear, but also some internal springs must be missing or broke as the trigger and the lever just flop around and don't work.

    It's a 32 cal., it has the flat hamer spring, The serial no. under the grip is
    "8355" and under the top strap it's "058355". On the ridge above the barrel it only has the name and address "H&R ARMS CO. WORCESTER MASS.", no pat. dates. I don't see any other markings but shouldn't there at least be some pat. dates somewhere?

    Thanks, T.Savage.

    Attached Files:

  2. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    Location:
    houston, tx
    it seem like H&R rarely marked patent dates on the short 2 inch barrel Premier. so dating them can be hard sometimes. but i believe we can help on this one. H&R used the 0 (or letter o) prefix on this model between 1899 and 1903.

    H&R PREMER FIRST MODEL SMALL FRAME TOP BREAK
    (BLACK POWDER)----------------------------1895-1904
    Small fame double action top break revolver with double top post barrel latch; calibers and cylinder capacity, 22 rimfire-7 rounds, 32 centerfire-5 rounds; Free wheeling cylinder (no automatic cylinder stop); standard finish Nickel with case harden hammer and barrel latch; standard barrel length 3 inches, with 4, 5 and 6 inches available as optional; features a scaled down version of the new frame and double action mechanism introduced in 1890 on the Auto-Ejecting Second Model, does not have caliber marking on left
    NO CALIBER MARKINGS ON LEFT SIDE OF BARREL MANUFACTURED FOR BLACK POWDER CARTRIDGE PRESSURES
    First Variation, patent dates 10-4-87, 5-14-89, 2-23-92, serial number range 01*-15,000 (estimate)----------------------1895-April 1896
    Second Variation, patent dates 10-4-87, 5-14-89, 4-2-95, 4-7-96, serial number range 15,000*-20,000* (estimate)-----------------May 1896
    Third Variation, patent dates 10-4-87, 4-2-95, 4-7-96, serial number range 20,000* to 100,000* (estimate)---------------------1897-1898
    Fourth Variation, automatic cylinder stop same patent dates as 3rd variation several different serial number series that may have letter codes---1899-1903
    Fifth Variation use different font in barrel markings and may have an A letter code in the serial number-------------------------1904 -only
    VALUE: 100%=$285 60%=$75 Add 10% premium for blue finish; 20% premium 4”, 5” or 6” barrel; 20% premium for 22 rimfire caliber

    bill
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2010
  3. fuzebox40

    fuzebox40 Active Member

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    Apple Valley, Ca.
    Bill, thank you, I greatly apreciate your time and expertiece and if you happen by this thread again and could answer another thing for me, at the risk of sounding dumb I have to say I didn't totaly get it. I'm a tad still confused as to the model.
    Are you saying this is a "H&R PREMER FIRST MODEL SMALL FRAME TOP BREAK" or "features a scaled down version of the new frame and double action mechanism introduced in 1890 on the Auto-Ejecting Second Model". Also by the variation dates it appears this would place in the fourth but the third variation serial no. range fits assuming the actual gun number is the larger of the two (085355). Sorry for my density on this but I would hate to leave the subject unsure of the exact model I have.
    Thanks, Terry.
  4. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

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    the reason H&R used a prefix letter or the the zero in the serial number is there were more than one serial number series with in the model. after 100,000 had been reached a new serial number series was started over (this time with the letter O or number Zero, how ever you chose to read it). there were about three serial number series for the first model Premier
    1. no prefix from 1 to 99,999
    2. prefix O (0) 1 to about O(0)99,999
    3. prefix A 1 to about A 50,000
    there could be other letter code used but they haven't shown up yet.

    to try to expalin it a little better it took H&R about three years (1895-1898) to reach a production of 100,000 premiers (first three variations) and another five years of production before the second model of at least 150,000.

    the second model premier (suitable for smokeless powder) was introduced about serial number A 50,001

    H&R serial number series before 1940 are very confusing and may never be fully unstood. so i hope i haven't confused you too much
    bill
  5. fuzebox40

    fuzebox40 Active Member

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    Apple Valley, Ca.
    Thanks so much, that cleared it up for me!
    T.Savage
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