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Discussion Starter #1
I just wanted to brag about this S&W 1917 I recently found. It's the cleanest one I've ever seen, even the lanyard ring is still case hardened. It must have spent it's service life in the armory.
 

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bearcat6,

BEAUTIFUL!!!

That MAY be one of "the post office revolvers". - After WWI, the USPO received several thousand "as new" Colt's New Service & S&W Model of 1917 revolvers from the Department of War, supposedly to protect the mails.

FEW were ever issued to anyone & remained "in storage" until the 1960s, when they were frequently "given as retirement gifts" to long-service employees.
(My late uncle was a rural carrier & was given a Model 1917, with a holster upon his retirement in 1966.)

yours, sw
 

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Gorgeous!

Including the grips!

Many years ago, I neglected to pick up one of the S&W M1917's reimported from Brazil. A famous gunwriter had commented in a course I took that, while such a gun might be okay for competition, the lack of the hammer-block safety - not introduced until sometime in WWII - made it an unwise choice to carry on the street.

Years later, I rethought that advice. Which gun is more likely to get dropped - one that you're using in range games or one that most likely will remain inside its holster when you take it outside the home?

Oh well... Color me envious. :mrgreen:
 

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That is a great looking revolver! Great find on your part. Now if I could just find one for sale around North Alabama...:)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Waite, that makes a lot of sense, although it's been fired quite a bit, there is some gas cutting on the frame, it doesn't look like a typical gun that saw a lot of military service.
 

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I just wanted to brag about this S&W 1917 I recently found. It's the cleanest one I've ever seen, even the lanyard ring is still case hardened. It must have spent it's service life in the armory.
"bearcat6":

It's a beautiful gun.

A couple of questions as a result of my looking at the hi-res version available on the host site for the photo you posted.

For all the benefits to digital photography (something in itself that's pretty amazing), is the blue seen in the image how it appears in real life? I have looked at it on two separate monitors, one of which I know is, in essence, color corrected and it appears a bit different than what I recall seeing on most of the wartime and wartime era commercial guns. Although one of the ones I used to have was straight but unusual in that regard too.

And does the frame mounted, cylinder stop lug appear black, unfinished but oil-darkened, or of a different/deeper blue than the frame, barrel or cylinder as it appears here?

The butt of the gun seems to be marked. Is it? And if so, is it marked in the conventional manner for the military at the time?

I ask that because I don't see any other marks on the gun. I have had a few and there is usually some sort of inspector's stamp on this side of the gun that is located in what to some would be the far, upper right hand corner of the frame (well above the thumbpiece and recoil shield; and within the vertical strip between the hammer and the cylinder window).

The grips might not be original (unless somebody was really lucky back then) and if you changed them out can you tell me anything about them as I have been dragged into an ongoing wood and handgun stock project and I find them pretty hip.

Thanks a lot and again, it looks like a great gun.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Mr Marlowe, I'm going to post another picture taken in full sunshine, maybe that will help. Yes the butt is marked with the usual US Army and a number, and us property under the barrel. You are right there is no inspector's mark above the cylinder release. There is and eagle head with a number or perhaps initials, I can't make it out, on the back of the cylinder, there are also those same eagle heads on the frame by the serial number and on the bottom of the barrel under the ejector rod. I'm not sure what you mean by the cylider stop lug. The frame mounted bolt is in the white, and the pin that releases the cylinder. I meant to mention in the OP that I put new grips on it as the ones it came with were S&W commercial checkered grips, the fellow I bought this from thought it was the commercial model despite the US markings. The grips I put on it came fom Numrich. also white.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
After finding my loupe I can now see the number below the eagle head proof marks is 534. The serial number on the butt is also on the rear of the cylinder,and on the bottom of the barrel under the ejector rod, tiny numbers. I don't know how it could be anymore legit.
 

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I think it is. There are so many nuances in U.S. martial firearms that hands on examination is sometimes the only way to authenticate them.

Old age is creeping up on me, but I seem to recall that the eagle is an inspector's mark from Springfield Armory.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yeah Charlie, I remember seeing that eagle proof on some early 1911's.
 

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Mr Marlowe, I'm going to post another picture taken in full sunshine, maybe that will help. Yes the butt is marked with the usual US Army and a number, and us property under the barrel. You are right there is no inspector's mark above the cylinder release. There is and eagle head with a number or perhaps initials, I can't make it out, on the back of the cylinder, there are also those same eagle heads on the frame by the serial number and on the bottom of the barrel under the ejector rod. I'm not sure what you mean by the cylider stop lug. The frame mounted bolt is in the white, and the pin that releases the cylinder. I meant to mention in the OP that I put new grips on it as the ones it came with were S&W commercial checkered grips, the fellow I bought this from thought it was the commercial model despite the US markings. The grips I put on it came fom Numrich. also white.
Bluing looks more right in that photo...bluer, more translucent like the gas oven/carbonia style of the era. I'd give anything to know how to do that process.
 
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