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Thread: Looking for serial number date range for S&W Victory .38

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  1. #1
    Really Senior Member RBruce's Avatar
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    Looking for serial number date range for S&W Victory .38

    I have a S&W Victory model .38 revolver, SN V1478xx. Is there a site that lists the date of manufacture? TIA


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    Really Senior Member HOOKED ON HISTORY's Avatar
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    For $50 Smith & Wesson will provide a very nicely done letter worthy of display for your revolver with the date of manufacture. Mine is in the 946xx range and if I remember correctly was manufactured in 1943. I believe the letter to ad $50 in value to the piece.

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    It would definitely fall in a narrow range, all WWII vintage. Later Victory models will have an "S" in the serial number due to a lockwork change made to prevent discharge if dropped on the hammer from a considerable height.

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    Really Senior Member RBruce's Avatar
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    I'm not interested in authentication, just the approximate date it was built. From looking a various entries on the Internet, I have determined that it was built in late 1942 or early 1943. But, I would like to know which year, if not the month.

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    What internet site did you find your information on? Some are notorious for being inaccurate.

    The suggestion made previously to obtain a S&W letter is your best bet if it is important enough to know the shipping date. It really has nothing to do with authentication, and all about when it was actually shipped and where.

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    Really Senior Member RBruce's Avatar
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    Various ones that either had one for sale or display that had been dated (?), one that had paid $50 for the S&W letter, and several more. None of them had SN/date ranges listed, just information about a particular revolver.

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    Really Senior Member RBruce's Avatar
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    I just found this on the Smith & Wesson Forum. I guess that makes mine October of 1942 or early November 1942.

    "I just received my factory letter and it confirms that Victory revolver number V158896 was shipped on November 20, 1942 to the US Navy, Oakland, CA. This is a standard 4 inch barrel Victory revolver in 38 Special with "U.S. Navy" marked on the top strap. This is the only military marking (no flaming bomb mark or a "P" on the frame, etc). The revolver has all matching numbers with the exception of the grips. "

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    Quote Originally Posted by RBruce View Post
    I just found this on the Smith & Wesson Forum. I guess that makes mine October of 1942 or early November 1942.
    Well done. I find persistance usually pays off on internet searches.
    Can you post some pics?

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    Is it known that S&W shipped in numerical serial number order? Colt discontinued this in both WWI and WWII as it was too hard to keep shipments in order. Toward the end of WWI a pistol with a consecutive serial number to another pistol may have been shipped a month apart to another destination.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RBruce View Post
    I just found this on the Smith & Wesson Forum. I guess that makes mine October of 1942 or early November 1942.

    "I just received my factory letter and it confirms that Victory revolver number V158896 was shipped on November 20, 1942 to the US Navy, Oakland, CA. This is a standard 4 inch barrel Victory revolver in 38 Special with "U.S. Navy" marked on the top strap. This is the only military marking (no flaming bomb mark or a "P" on the frame, etc). The revolver has all matching numbers with the exception of the grips. "
    Is this the thread?

    "Victory data base"

    http://smith-wessonforum.com/s-w-han...data-base.html

    A data base on Victory Models. That could get rather large!

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