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My wife received this revolver handed down from her great grandfather. We are trying to determine its age. It has a low serial # (24XX). It has mother of perl grips and is either chrome or nickel plated. It seems to have no mechanical issues and her Dad has shot it in the past. Would love to know when it was made.
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You have a very nice conditioned S&W .32 Double Action, 2nd Model made in either late 1880 or early 1881. It's not mint, but is in nice shape. This model has a serial range of 31-22172 and was made 1880-1882.
 

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question. is the corrosion on the front of the cylinder due to corrosive ammo?

if not for that, the gun looks near perfect shape
 

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It's nickel. I don't know that chrome was known at that time. Compared to the condition one usually sees those in that one is nice.

If it is indeed corrosion at the front of the cylinder I suspect it's more from the nickel flaking off from firing exposing the metal beneath.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
You have a very nice conditioned S&W .32 Double Action, 2nd Model made in either late 1880 or early 1881. It's not mint, but is in nice shape. This model has a serial range of 31-22172 and was made 1880-1882.
Thanks for the background. I've been reading a bit on this forum and I'm presuming that based on that age, i shouldn't shoot modern rounds in it.

It's nickel. I don't know that chrome was known at that time. Compared to the condition one usually sees those in that one is nice.

If it is indeed corrosion at the front of the cylinder I suspect it's more from the nickel flaking off from firing exposing the metal beneath.
It is not rust but seems to be the plating flaking off.
 

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Thanks for the background. I've been reading a bit on this forum and I'm presuming that based on that age, i shouldn't shoot modern rounds in it.


It is not rust but seems to be the plating flaking off.
Correct, only ammo loaded with black powder would be safe.
 
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