H&R Top Break

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by Rosco5, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. Rosco5

    Rosco5 New Member

    Aug 2, 2011
    Hi All,

    I'd appreciate any info on the following pistol:

    On top of barrel: Harrington & Richardson Arms Company, Worchester Massachusetts, USA

    Left side of barrel: 32 S&W CTGE

    Barrel approximately 3 1/2 in. long

    Cylinder is a 6 shot, no visible hammer, top break

    At the top of the handle is a target logo

    Serial number on butt as well as inside above cylinder: 177533

    The gun was my grandfathers and I'd like to know when it was manufactured and what it might be worth. It has a sort of black finish, seems fully functional, and is in good condition except for a few scratches.

    Also, would it be safe to fire using today's ammunition?

    And lastly, how does the trigger mechanism work. (I know very little about guns.) The trigger seems to have 3 positions: when pulled all the way back, the cylinder rotates and the hammer fires. It then stays locked in the rear position. When pushed partially forward, the trigger will cause the cylinder to rotate but not fire. When pushed fully forward (which takes some effort), the trigger is ready to again rotate and fire.
  2. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

    Apr 20, 2008
    Lehigh Valley, PA
    Welcome to the forum.
    You have a 2nd Model HAMMERLESS LARGE FRAME TOP BREAK 5th Variaition (1916-1924). With a serial number in the 170K range - it was made early in the range - most likely 1917. The 'black' finish is the correct Blued finish for this period in H&R's history.
    That gun was made well into the H&R smokeless/Nitro powder capable era and should be able to handle any modern .32 S&W or .32 S&W Long factory loading - IF - it is in such condition as to be safely shot. If you don't know what to look for, have it checked by a qualified gunsmith.
    Speaking of a qualified gunsmith - your gun is screwed up internally. It sounds as though the trigger return spring is broken and/or something in jamming up in the action. There should be a smooth pull to release the hammer and then the trigger should return to position in the trigger guard ready for another shot, without any fiddling around.
    In v.good condition, and all is working properly - your gun would be worth around 200 bucks with a premium (collector interest) for the blued finish.
    Here's a pic of a couple of mine - these are marked as 3rd Var. but that is incorrect - the pic was taken early in the research process and Bill G. came up with different variations since that time.

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