S&W Model of 1917

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by dkgva1, Feb 4, 2008.

  1. dkgva1

    dkgva1 New Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    I recently came across a S&W Model 1917 in what I estimate to be about 95%+ condition. It has a serial number which puts its manufacture at about 1918. The bore is clean and bright and the smooth walnut grips are in excellent condition. It is stamped US Property on the underside of the barrel and all other markings appear correct. It does not have an inspectors stamp. ( Could that indicate a problem) Could someone give me a value range on this gun. Sorry no pics as the gun is not in my possession
  2. 22WRF

    22WRF Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2004
    Blue Book for 95% is $650

  3. dkgva1

    dkgva1 New Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    Thanks 22WRF. Is this the same gun listed in the Blue book as .45 Hand Ejector (Model of 1917) on page 1531?

    That shows a value of $1450. So I must be looking at the wrong gun. Thanks for your help.
  4. 22WRF

    22WRF Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2004
    I have last years book and it's on page 1476..45 Hand Ejector of Model of 1917
  5. dkgva1

    dkgva1 New Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    WOW! I have the 28th edition. These guns must have become very popular in 1 years time.
  6. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    Blue Book of Gun Values, 28th Edition, Page 1531

    .45 HAND EJECTIOR (MODEL OF 1917) -

    .45 Hand Ejector Military -

    100% - $1,850
    98% - $1,75
    95% - $1,450
    90% - $1,200
    80% - $1,000
    70% - $875
    60% - $750

    Add 25% for early military mfg. with concentric groove cut inside of hammer.

    Now.....about the inspector's stamp. From the Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson....

    "Various inspector's markings have been observed and usually include an eagle's head stamp with a letter and number combination.

    Early issue revolvers in a serial range of 1 -c.42000 usually will have a "GHS" marking indicating Major Gilbert H. Stewart as an inspector. Middle issue revolvers in a range of 42000 until April 1918 usually have a Springfield Armory flaming bomb. Late issue from April 1918 to the end of military wartime production are found with the eagle's head and an "S" number. The letter/number combinations S1, S2, S3, S4, S6, S9, S24, S27, and S34 have been observed on various examples of Model 1917s. These numbers indicate various assistant inspectors." (italics are mine - XR)

    HOWEVER! Now for a bit of Xracer's Trivial Gun History! As we all know, in order to produce enough handguns for our troops in WWI, (in addition to the M1911) Uncle Sam gave both Colt and S&W contracts to produce their large frame revolvers in .45ACP. No problem for Colt. The knew what the Military wanted and started cranking em' out cheap and fast.

    S&W on the other hand, continued to make hand-fitted and finely finished guns, and, as a result, fell far behind on their contract numbers. The Gov't told S&W, "Don't make 'em so good....make 'em FAST!" Smith tried, but just couldn't hack it.....so the U.S. Government stepped in and actually took over the management of the Smith & Wesson plant.

    During the Gov't takeover, naturally there was some confusion. As a result, during this period a number of guns were made with anomalous markings (some with extra markings, some with missing markings.)

    So.....if you have no inspection marks, you may have one of these "Confusion Specials". :D
  7. dkgva1

    dkgva1 New Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    Thanks for your help xracer. Assuming all numbers are matching and gun is in condition I described would the lack of inspection mark effect the value?
  8. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

    Check it over carefully. Does not have a flaming bomb, eagle's head, or S with number anywhere on it? Go over every part of the gun with a magnifying glass.
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