Original U.S. Antique Smith & Wesson Model 1 1/2 2nd Issue Revolver in .32 S&W - Serial 89767
Original Item: Only One Available. This is an American classic, first introduced in 1865 and produced continuously until 1892. The Smith & Wesson Model 1 1/2 was Smith & Wesson's second .32 caliber revolver, intended to combine the small size and convenience of the .22 caliber Model 1 with the larger caliber of the 6-shot "belt sized" Model 2, which was introduced in 1860. Chambered in .32 cal, its cylinder held 5 shots. It was produced in three varieties, termed "issues" by S&W, with total production exceeding 223,000.
The First Issue Model 1 1/2 had an non-fluted cylinder and a flat bottomed "square" grip, and was chambered for .32 rimfire ammunition, and approximately 26,000 were produced.
The second issue of the Model 1 1/2 can be identified by its fluted barrel and the rounded "birds head" shape of the grip butt. Like the 1st Issue, it was also produced in blued steel and nickel-plated varieties, with most models having a 3 1/2-inch barrel. It is estimated that less than a thousand models were produced with a 2 1/2-inch barrel; these can be positively identified by the barrel markings located on the side of the barrel, as opposed to the markings on the top strap that were applied to 3 1/2-inch barrels.
This is a nice strong example of the Model 1 1/2, 2nd Issue Revolver with 3 1/2" barrel. Standard blued finish with rosewood grips. Produced by Smith and Wesson from 1868-1875, this was the firm's final improvement of the .32 rimfire tip-up with the more stylish stream-lined barrel, fluted cylinder, and birds head grips. The original SMITH & WESSON address and patent dates are still easily readable on the top strap.
2nd Issue guns were serial numbered consecutively after the 1st Issue, with numbers ranging from approximately 26,300 through 127,000. Serial number on this example is 89767 placing it mid-production around 1872. This number is found on the bottom of the grip, as well as on the inside of the right grip scale. There is also assembly number 73 on the grip frame, barrel, and cylinder.
Overall condition is very good with some original blued finish which breaks down to 80% on the frame and straps, 10% on the barrel, and 40% on the cylinder. Most 1 1/2's lack much original blue across the barrel and cylinders. This is either due to heat expansion from firing which caused the blue to flake or uncleaned fingerprints from the owner grabbing hold of the barrel to tip-up and reload the cylinder. Either way, not many have survived with as much blue as this one.
Hammer, ejector pin, and trigger show a nice gray patina, their original case hardening having been worn off. The lovely rosewood grips are unfortunately missing most of their original "piano varnish" finish. Very good screws and pins throughout. Barrel is nice and tight to the frame. Action functions flawlessly. The bore is very good, with a bright finish, clear lands and grooves, and just a few spots of oxidation.
A really nice example of a classic revolver!
Years of Manufacture: circa 1872
Ammunition Type: Rimfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 3 1/2 inches
Overall Length: 7 1/2 inches
Feed System: 5 Shot Revolver
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