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Discussion Starter #1
I bought this 38cal Officer 3rd Target model as a shooter. Serial 631580. It has the heavy barrel. I think the sights, hammer, and trigger are not original. The lead in areas of the bolt stop slots on the cylinder have had the blue removed. I think the stocks are correct type but not original as they have "bay head police dept" penciled on them. Can anyone comment on the parts and if they were used by shooters in the past?




 

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Well gunfish, you did get yourself a pretty nice looking shooter.

You have ID'ed your suspicions very well in the photos. Let me start by commenting on the trigger. I believe that to be original to the gun. It is the proper style as used on a gun from 1939.

As far as the rest of the parts you ID'ed, I believe they are replacements. Hammer, front sight and rear sight all clearly not original.

The stocks I believe are also not original. Although your photos are good, I can't tell if they are made of real wood or Coltwood. If they are Coltwood they are definitely wrong for the gun as that year would have come with wood checkered walnut. But either way, the medallions (which are a bit hard to see any detail) I believe are not the correct style for your gun. The older guns of that period did not use the modern shiny almost chrome like colored medallion found on your gun. Instead, a gun from that period would have a medallion that is duller in appearance looking more like silver or nickel.

In fact the older medallions and the newer medallions even mount to the stocks differently. If you take off the stocks on you gun and can see the back of the medallion pedestal through the mounting hole, that will confirm they are wrong. The medallions from that period gun will not extend all the way through to the inside, as they are shaped like a bowl with no pedestal.
 

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GF: You have a very handsome and interesting piece there. I think that WS23 has diagnosed it for you pretty well. I also have a pre-war OM Heavy Barrel in .38 Special with a front sight that appears similar to yours. It is serialed 609283 which, according to Wilson, dates it to 1937.

Have you tried to find out anything about the "Bay Head PD"? That might turn up some interesting information. My experience has been that smaller PDs tend to be more forthcoming with info than the larger metropolitan departments. Nice post!

Charlie Flick


 

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Nice shooter. Whoever did the sights and hammer did a professional job. Trigger is original; it was checkered and the backstrap should be also. The front sight adjustment screw is missing - perhaps it was no longer necessary with the new undercut sight. If you want to plug the hole temporarily, a good hardware store will have a hex head screw that has the same thread size, until you find an original (and if you do, I'll buy a couple!). Those seem to work their way out under recoil, so a dab of Locktite is in order. Maybe Charlie can explain more about the front sight.
B.W.
 

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GunFish,
The front and rear sights are by Roper, the trigger is factory, the grips are Post War Colt, wrong for this gun as the gun was made in 1939.
IP


Originally posted by gunfish:
I bought this 38cal Officer 3rd Target model as a shooter. Serial 631580. It has the heavy barrel. I think the sights, hammer, and trigger are not original. The lead in areas of the bolt stop slots on the cylinder have had the blue removed. I think the stocks are correct type but not original as they have "bay head police dept" penciled on them. Can anyone comment on the parts and if they were used by shooters in the past?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the replies, I am smarter than I was yesterday, always a good thing. The back strap is cross hatched and not polished. According to google, the Bay Head Police Dept is in New Jersey. The stocks are in very good shape with little wear although they are dirty.Here is a pic.
 

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The previous posts are right on the mark. The only thing I could add is to say if you look on the underside of the checkered hammer spur, you can sometimes see the weld line where the gunsmith enlarged the spur by adding weld and reshaping to it's present configuration. I've had a couple of these that the original hammer profile could be seen if examined closely. The hammer is probably the original Colt part, but with the spur modified. From what I can see in the photographs,the gunsmith did excellent work. However, I've seen a couple of OM's with work similar to this, that had the trigger sear stoned so thin they would start to chip, and become downright dangerous. This may have been popular with some of the early target shooters that babied their guns, but sure makes for a fragile sear engagement.
 

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I have a single action OMT with the Roper front sight. I have been told that back then you could order the revolver with sights from Kings and Roper.
 

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I may have been wrong about the grips being Post War, now that I can see the inside of the grips I would have to say they are Pre War, the original picture of the grips had way to much shine on the medallions, making them look chrome plated, Post War medallions have a cheep chrome plated look because that's what they are.
Pre War medallions are Silver.

I also forgot to mention the Hammer, from others I have seen I believe that's also a Roper, it seems that the only thing this gun is missing is Roper grips, who knows, at one time they may have had them, and if so it would be a complete Roper Target gun.

This gun is much more than just a "Shooter" as some have said, a real Target Shooter, or a Serious Collector would value it much more than a recreation shooter or your typical tin can shooter.
IP


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Majic:
I have a single action OMT with the Roper front sight. I have been told that back then you could order the revolver with sights from Kings and Roper.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
 

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I know this is a pretty old post, but I was wondering what info you could give me on this OP I traded for the other day. I know its from the 52-53 timeframe, that's about it.
Thanks.
Pat
 
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