Harrington & Richardson Top Break revolvers

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by bigbore45colt, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. bigbore45colt

    bigbore45colt New Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Emmaus, PA
    I have two H&R top break revolvers that I have some questions about:

    1) This 5-shot top-break revolver is nickel plated and has a hammer. It has black grips with a target logo in a circle. On the top of the barrel is stamped Harrington & Richardson Arms Company Worcester, Mass USA PAT OCT 4'87 APR 2'95 APR 7'96. The number under the topstrap is 83349, the number on the star of the cylinder is 349, the number under the left grip is 3349. No other numbers or markings anywhere else. There is a button on the left side of the topstrap to lock the cylinder latch in the open position to allow for removing the cylinder.

    What do I have?

    The trigger return spring appears to be broken as the trigger will not reset after I cycle it. Is this a part I can find and replace myself?

    2) This 5-shot top-break revolver is nickel plated and has a hammer. It is missing the grips and the trigger return spring. On the top of the barrel is stamped Harrington & Richardson Arms Company Worcester, Mass USA PAT OCT 8 1895. The left side of the barrel states 32 S&W CTGE. The number under the topstrap is 429637, the number on the cylinder is 637, the number under the left grip is 429637 and the number under the butt of the gun is also 429637. No other numbers or markings anywhere else. What do I have?

    Again, I'd like to find the missing parts to put this gun back in working condition. What would be the correct grips? Where would be a good source for them? Also, where would be a good source for the missing spring?

    Is there a good reference for parts drawings and repair instructions?

    Thanks in advance for any information you may provide.

    Kindest regards,

    BB45C
  2. bigbore45colt

    bigbore45colt New Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Emmaus, PA
    Can anybody provide any assistance with these 2 old H&Rs, please?

    Thanks,

    BB45C
  3. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

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  4. b.goforth

    b.goforth New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2003
    Messages:
    3,174
    Location:
    houston, tx
    1. if this revolver has a hammer it is the first model premier 3rd variation manufactured between 1897 and 1898 and if it is a hammerless model it is the H&R small frame hammerless first model 1st variation manufactured between 1899 and 1903. both of these models used the three patent date markings you list. see below

    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

    H&R HAMMERLESS FIRST MODEL SMALL FRAME TOP BREAK
    (BLACK POWDER)-------------------------------------------1899-1904
    Small Frame Double Action Hammerless Top Break revolver with double top post barrel latch; caliber and cylinder capacity, 32 S&W (5 rounds), None of the catalogs I have seem indicates the First Model was offered in 22 rimfire; finish is nickel or blue (optional); grips are hard rubber with a target logo at the top; standard barrel length is 3 ¼ inch, with 4, 5 and 6 inch optional; rebounding hammer; automatic cylinder stop; no caliber markings on left side of barrel. NO CALIBER MARKING ON LEFT SIDE OF BARREL DESIGNED FOR BLACK POWDER CARTRIDGE PRESSURES
    First Variation, patent dates 10-4-87, 4-2-95, 4-7-96, serial number range; 01*-82000*(Estimate)-------------------1899-1903
    Second Variation, patent dates 5-14-89,4-2-95, 4-6-96, serial number range; 82000*-90000*(Estimate)------------1904-Only
    VALUE: 100%=$255 60%=$95 Add 10% premium for blue finish; 20% premium 4”, 5” or 6” barrel

    2. serial number 429637 is the small frame premier (hammer) model is is a second model 3rd variation manufactured between 1909 and 1913. see below

    H&R PREMER SECOND MODEL SMALL FRAME TOP BREAK R.F. & C.F. -------------1905-1941
    Small fame double action top break revolver with double top post barrel latch; calibers and cylinder capacity, 22 rimfire-7 rounds, 32 S&W, 5 rounds; automatic cylinder stop; standard finish Nickel with case harden hammer and barrel latch; standard barrel length 3 inches, with 2, 4, 5 and 6 inches available as optional; HAS CALIBER MARKINGS ON LEFT SIDE OF BARREL WAS MANUFACTURED FOR SMOKELESS POWDER CARTRIDGE PRESSURES.
    There has not been enough data gathered on serial number to try to come up with a serial number range for the different variations.
    First Variation, model name & caliber marked on left side of barrel, patent dates 5-14-89, 4-2-95, 4-7-96---------------------------1905-Only
    Second Variation, model name & caliber marked on left side of barrel, patent dates 4-2-95, 4-7-96------------------------------------1906-1908
    Third Variation, caliber only marked on left side of barrel, patent date 10-8-95--------------------------------------------------------1909-1913
    Fourth Variation, caliber only marked on left side of barrel, no patent date, state not spelled out in address (MASS)------------------1904-1915
    Fifth Variation, caliber only marked on left side of barrel same as 4th except different font used in barrel markings--------------------1914-1915
    Sixth Variation, caliber only marked on left side of barrel. State name in barrel marking spelled out (MASSACHUSETTS)--------------------1916-1924
    Seventh Variation, new grip frame, there is no step down for the grip panels to fit into----------------------------------------------1925-1942
    After 1930 listed in catalogs as; PREMIER No. 30 .22 Rimfire 7 shot; PREMIER No. 35.32 S&W 5 shot
    VALUE: 100%=$265 60%=$75 Add 10% premium for blue finish; 20% premium 4”, 5” or 6” barrel; 20% premium for 22 rimfire caliber; 10% premium for 7th variation
  5. Texxut

    Texxut Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    312
    Location:
    Utah
    Thanks B.Goforth,
    you've help me nail down my Great Uncles' backup piece. He was a cop in Orange County, Ca. when it was mostly orange groves.
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