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Help IDing a (not Smith) Possibly Iver Johnson

Mr. PerfectMr. Perfect Member Posts: 59,626 ✭✭✭✭
edited July 2018 in Ask the Experts
My friend's dad would like some help evaluating this pistol. I have no idea what it is. I couldn't see any markings on it, but I don't know where to look either. Possible value??

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Images fixed to show better resolution. It is clear it is not a Smith, but that is what I was told it was and didn't look closer until now.
Some will die in hot pursuit
And fiery auto crashes
Some will die in hot pursuit
While sifting through my ashes
Some will fall in love with life
And drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche
Coming down the mountain

Comments

  • Ricci WrightRicci Wright Member Posts: 9,670
    edited November -1
    Sir are you certain it's a S&W? Look on the top of the barrel rib there may be a barrel address there.
  • rufe-snowrufe-snow Member Posts: 18,517 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The old top break Smiths, were copiously marked. If it has no markings at all. Either they have been removed. Or more likely, a Spanish made knock-off.

    A close up photo of the grips might lead to identification. Different Spanish manufacturers, had their own crests that the marked their grips with.
  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,348 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Part of the identification process is caliber and center/rim fire - neither of which is determinable from your pic's. Size is important also so a scale would help. Good in focus pic's of any stamps including under the grips - highlighting them with chalk or grease pencil will help faint ones show. Close inspection with a hand lens under a good light might help revel faint stamps.

    You could do an advance search on completed auctions for "S&W Iver Johnson top break" and try and compare their pic's to your pistol.

    added yep the grips look like IJ owl heads. Likely got S&W in name of the cartridge such as 32 or 38 S&W.
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,296 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    It is NOT a Smith & Wesson. Period.

    I can't enlarge the grip logo but it looks like it might be an Iver Johnson trademark owl's head. If it is not the owl's head, then it is likely a Spanish copy, they turned them out by the shipload before Franco rationalized the Spanish firearms industry before WWII.
  • cbyerlycbyerly Member Posts: 703 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    The owls head grips identify it as a Harrington and Richardson
  • Mr. PerfectMr. Perfect Member Posts: 59,626 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by cbyerly
    The owls head grips identify it as a Harrington and Richardson
    I'm pretty sure, now, that this is an Iver Johnson.
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    And fiery auto crashes
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    While sifting through my ashes
    Some will fall in love with life
    And drink it from a fountain
    That is pouring like an avalanche
    Coming down the mountain
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,296 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Thanks for blowing them up.
    Definitely Iver Johnson.

    The owl head facing forward means it is an older gun, made before 1909. After that, the owl faces back or actually down the grip.

    Looks like a .32, if so, cartridge is .32 S&W which is probably why he thinks it is a Smith.
    Pre-1909 guns are Internet Rated as "black powder only."
  • Mr. PerfectMr. Perfect Member Posts: 59,626 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by Hawk Carse
    Thanks for blowing them up.
    Definitely Iver Johnson.

    The owl head facing forward means it is an older gun, made before 1909. After that, the owl faces back or actually down the grip.

    Looks like a .32, if so, cartridge is .32 S&W which is probably why he thinks it is a Smith.
    Pre-1909 guns are Internet Rated as "black powder only."
    Thanks!
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    And fiery auto crashes
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    While sifting through my ashes
    Some will fall in love with life
    And drink it from a fountain
    That is pouring like an avalanche
    Coming down the mountain
  • 11b6r11b6r Member Posts: 16,725
    edited November -1
    Grips are definitely Iver Johnson. Markings would have been on the top of the barrel rib. These were common in caliber .32 S&W and .38 S&W. When barrels were so marked, a lot of folks assumed S&W was the maker of the gun (instead of being the namer of the cartridge it used)
  • Mr. PerfectMr. Perfect Member Posts: 59,626 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by 11b6r
    Grips are definitely Iver Johnson. Markings would have been on the top of the barrel rib. These were common in caliber .32 S&W and .38 S&W. When barrels were so marked, a lot of folks assumed S&W was the maker of the gun (instead of being the namer of the cartridge it used)
    I didn't see any markings on the top of the bbl.
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    And fiery auto crashes
    Some will die in hot pursuit
    While sifting through my ashes
    Some will fall in love with life
    And drink it from a fountain
    That is pouring like an avalanche
    Coming down the mountain
  • rufe-snowrufe-snow Member Posts: 18,517 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by Mr. Perfect
    quote:Originally posted by 11b6r
    Grips are definitely Iver Johnson. Markings would have been on the top of the barrel rib. These were common in caliber .32 S&W and .38 S&W. When barrels were so marked, a lot of folks assumed S&W was the maker of the gun (instead of being the namer of the cartridge it used)
    I didn't see any markings on the top of the bbl.



    Either I J grips, were put on a Spanish revolver? Or it also, could be what is known to collectors, as a, "Lunch Bucket Special". Absconded by a employee, via 5 finger discount. It should have some form of IJ markings. Over and above the grips.
  • Bill DeShivsBill DeShivs Member Posts: 1,271 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    It's a plain old black powder-era Iver Johnson. Not Spanish, not put-together. The lettering on the rib is probably rusted over.
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