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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a hankering for a Detective Special with a half-moon front sight and an exposed ejector rod. I suppose these features would only be characteristic of a 1st generation gun. Could the earlier 2nd generation "Dick Specials" also have these features? What price ranges may one expect to pay for one in 90% to 95% condition?

I know my way around the various models in the Smith & Wesson line-up but am sadly lacking in knowledge about Colt DA revolvers. This forum is as good as a reference book for a new member so hopefully I'll get up to speed soon.
 

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You will only find a half moon front sight on a pre war(or right after the war-46'-47,if there were leftover bbls.) D.S.

But.they are NOT the best for a sight picture;I think the ramps are-but NOT that "ramp" on the shrouded models! So,I would look for a 1946-66 vintage.

I have a 1932,square butt,but prior owner, a bank messenger,had a gunsmith widen the rear notch and put a Patridge front sight on. Great sight picture,and quick to align!

Bud /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
 

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I agree . As a shooter , I like the 2nd model with the matted top strap and ramped front . The sight notch is squared instead of the earlier U shape . Easier to sight as Bud says .

Bud , can we see your modified 1932 ? Sounds pretty cool !

Round front and rear on this one /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif


 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I really like the profile of the one pictured. I guess I figured on obtaining a companion to my Banker's Special. Thanks for posting that photo.

Shooting it would be a consideration so I may look at 2nd generation guns as well. May boil down to what I can find in condition and price. I'm assuming that the 1st generation guns are just a bit more pricey?
 

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1st Generations,or pre wars,are indeed,a "little" more pricey! Read Addicted's post on the K.C. Gun Show,about the D.S.he bought,and rapidly sold,for an idea on pre war prices-or with the "1/2 moon sight".

BTW.always check the timing on these older D.S.(long grip frames)and beware of nicely done refinishes on the older guns. I have seen "a few" ex LEO marked(and unmarked guns) that were bought surplus from P.D.s,new stocks added and nicely reblued,that the seller was less than forthcoming about the full pedigree on these ponies.

Bud /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I liked the DS for the $700 price much better than the $1200 price. I'll scout the Dallas/ Fort Worth gun shows for the next few months to see what may turn up. Original blue with dark walnut grips is what I envision. A little honest wear is ok but don't want a refinished gun.

I've wanted a Detective Special for quite a while. Years ago I was cheated out of one when I attended the auction of a closed gun shop. Towards the end of the auction they held up a Colt "snub". I was at the back of the crowd and wasn't paying close attention to the lots offered by this time, as I though I'd done all the damage that my wallet could stand. The bidding began low and was half-hearted. "Going, going...and I raised my hand, hoping I was bidding on a Detective Special rather than an Agent or Cobra. No one else bid so I won. I moved through the crowd towards the front to see what I'd bought. I was thinking to myself that I was into it for the right price no matter what model Colt it was, or even if it'd been refinished. It wasn't a Detective Special at all. It was a Banker's Special, and in really fine condition. Since I am a banker by profession I'd always thought it'd be fun to have a Banker's Special but never though I'd spring for the money they bring. I was tickled pink. It was a pleasant surprise but I still don't have a Detective Special.
 

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If you have a round-butt BS, then you should have a similar vintge DS with the round butt. If you have a square butt BS, then you need an earlier DS. If you deviate from that natural order of things, the Gun God may smite you. She is funny that way. I would not chance incurring her rath.

Both styles come up on the auction sites from time to time. I bought a nice 1935 DS last fall with a near perfect box and all papers, but missing the ejector rod head. After looking for months for one and posting everywhere, I faxed Jack First with a picture of the proper style and had the right part in a few days for about $8 delivered. Why did not I think of that months earlier?

My love affair with the classic DS began with the introduction to Superman on television is the 1950s, when the "faster than a speeding bullet" part was demonstrated by firing a classic DS. Chills yet.
 

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I gather from your post that your not looking for a shooter but would take it out to the range on occassion if desired.

I L.O.V.E. the early square butt detective specials. As a shooter, the square butt fits much better in my hand. I have more fun with my 1933 nickel DS than any other revolver. The nickel is only 70% but it's a good honest gun. I purchased it 1 year ago for $280. I found it on the net and nickel is rather hard to come by. If you look long enough a your gun will come your way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Judge;

You're right. I do need to keep a sense of balance. I do like the square butt really well. To me the BS is easier to shoot well than is the S&W Chief'Special. Both conceal equally well.

Addicted:

It would be nice to shoot the DS for familiarization and infrequent exercise. Wouldn't consider it a serious carry piece. Well, maybe for more formal occasions.
 

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Sorry, but the Superman series was introduced with a shot from a Police Positive Special, not a DS. No DS was made with a 4 inch barrel. I know we are showing our age, but I distinctly remember the gun as a PPS. Can't remember where I put my glasses, but I remember the important stuff.
 

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HS, I would swear under oath that it was a DS and not a PPS, but then I cannot remember what I had for breakfast so I will defer to your claim, but in my mind's eys, I still see a DS.
 

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Judge-know what you mean about the breakfast thing, except I'm at the point where it's not WHAT I had but IF I had anything. Out of the hazy mists of time, however, I do remember a 4 in. barrel out of which flew "the speeding bullet"; must have been a PPS-or maybe an OP? -Asa
 
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