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My brother was searching 44-40 on GunBroker and found these S & W model 544 "Wagon Train Commemoratives." There was a couple listed at about $995.00. So I did a search in order to put them on my watchlist and found one for $795.00, which when the auction was over the price was $820.00. He got the presentation box as well no paperwork.
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Target trigger and hammer, red ramp/white outline, smooth Goncalo Alves(?) stocks - pretty much fully dressed for a blued gun. These have to be the hen's teeth of modern N-frames.
 

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I have one of those "Hen Tooth`s". I bought it about 30 years ago used/new from a guy at work. I dont think it`s ever been fired. I own a bunch of .44 specials and a .44 mag so never seen the need to initiate yet. It has the 5" barrel just like a 5" model 29-2 I own. I hope to sell it a couple months before I die.
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S&W made earlier .44-40's, but were late to the game compared to Colt. They made a couple thousand New model No3 Frontier in .44-40 starting in 1885, but I've never seen one in person. They also chambered their DA's also called the 'Frontier' in .44-40 from about 1886-1913. These seem to be more plentiful (15,000 or so). I have two earlier ones w/o caliber marking. (Top two guns in photo) Note: the DA pull on these seems like around 20 lbs or so.
 

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I have one of those "Hen Tooth`s". I bought it about 30 years ago used/new from a guy at work. I dont think it`s ever been fired. I own a bunch of .44 specials and a .44 mag so never seen the need to initiate yet. It has the 5" barrel just like a 5" model 29-2 I own. I hope to sell it a couple months before I die.
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Merril, why am I not surprised???
 

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The Model 544's are nice guns, and that was a good price. I'd like to have one but I have never seen one for sale at a show or LGS.
I understand that they used a .44 Magnum barrel rather than one specially bored for the .44-40 cartridge which generally run a little tighter. If you get a chance and have a set of pin gauges, I would be curious what the cylinder throats run. Properly handloaded I'll bet it would be a great shooter.
 

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I also have a Model 544 that I picked up at a gunshow several years ago, complete with presentation box, papers, etc. It may not have ever been shot but there was plenty of evidence that it had been handled a lot throughout it's life. I swapped out the "fancy" smooth grips for a pair of diamond target grips and shoot it quite a bit. They are very accurate and 44-40 recoil is not an issue in that heavy N-frame.
I have never pursued it but was told that a Model 29 cylinder was an easy fit and you have a nice 5" 44 Mag.

Maybe someday.
 

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I need to pull out my 29-2 and 544 again to compare. Years ago I recall wondering about the same thing and at that time seem to recall the 544
cylinder being shorter so you would have to mill some of the barrel off and wouldnt be able to reverse back to 44/40 if you did. I own both with the 5" barrel. I bought my 29-2 with the 5" used many years ago. I seen one more at a gun show only about 7 numbers off mine. I assumed mine straight but got a factory letter saying it was sent to Stoger company as a 6 1/2". The crown, lettering on barrel is perfectly centered etc.
 

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This is really cool thread. I've enjoyed the photos.

Years ago while grouse hunting we stopped in a shop in Alpena that had a Model 544. Like any sensible person I like blued N-frames, and though the revolver was fairly priced I was put off by the cost of factory .44-40 cartridges; I wasn't in any real position to buy it at the time anyway.

I had forgotten about it until this thread. I don't think the one I saw was a Wagon Train. Maybe Texas Rangers? I can't remember.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well we did shoot it today. I only shot it 6 times. It was hot here in Florida and as I was shooting my newly acquired original Cobra, soon to be my new carry piece as I seem to shoot it a bit better then my Detective Special, my trigger finger was a bit tender shooting that LWT.
I did shot some 44-40 reloads out of my Pietta.

My brother finished off a box or 44-40 reloads loaded up with Bullseye, and he asked for some others loads. "You want factory" "not necessarily"
So I see a box of 44-40 loads in a Hornady box 8.0 grains Unique behind a 200 grain RNFP. He liked that load. It has a bit more ump then the factory loads even the Winchester Super X.

We also shot a FEG PA 63 9mm Makarov I'll do a thread on that little pistol tomorrow.
 

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If it was 44/40 it was the N frame Texas wagon trail. The Texas rangers was the K frame in .357. I have owned both.
That's what I was thinking but couldn't remember for sure. I do remember literature saying that the Texas Wagon Train Commemorative was first double-action 44-40 made by S&W in 100 years (or something like that) and the only N-frame 44-40 they ever made.
 

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I am not positive but I think they might have made the break open (top) DA in .44/40 too. (Most were .44 Russian or .44 S&W, a short version of the .44 special ) Far as the N frame go`s I believe the 544 was the only 44/40.
 

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I am not positive but I think they might have made the break open (top) DA in .44/40 too. (Most were .44 Russian or .44 S&W, a short version of the .44 special ) Far as the N frame go`s I believe the 544 was the only 44/40.
There were about 15,000 model 3's made in 44/40 IIRC
(DA's)
And 2,000 SA's
 
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