The Julia gun is an AUTHENTIC Deluxe Grade L.C. Smith; the Redding gun is an FAKE.
When someone posts a photo of Kraus's initials on Julia gun then I'll believe it's there; but regardless of what may be on that gun, the initials on the FAKE are FAKE. And we know the Redding gun is a FAKE and not an UPGRADE by the fact that the serial number has been changed, which serial number change I believe is a violation of Federal law. I've spoken directly with an individual who personally examined the Redding gun; outside it appears new, but is a gun that's seen heavy use. The standing breech is heavily worn with deep shell head impressions; and when opened it is loose on the hinge with noticeable side to side movement. I also understand the gun has a standard Field/low grade safety slide; this is always a dead giveaway on upgraded Smith guns, as high grade Smith safety slides are sculpted, engraved, and checkered. If we could remove the lock plates to check the Redding gun for the fine details and finishes Hunter incorporated into their Deluxe Grade gun, I suspect we'd find few if any of those finish details. Below is a pic of the lock plates from a Monogram Grade gun; note the sculpting of the bridles, the fine polishing given to all lock parts, and the finely jeweled inside plate surfaces. I've never seen an upgraded gun that incorporated these details, as the focus is always on outside appearance; and although I don't have a photo of the internals from a Deluxe Grade, one can bet Deluxe Grade lock plates were even finer finished.
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