Re: Question for Tom Archer on his article in Journal
Posted by Tom Archer on September 25, 2019, 1:06 pm, in reply to "Re: Question for Tom Archer on his article in Journal"
After additional thought, please allow me to add |
some additional comments for a complete clarification. Whenever I refer to a Smith gun as a "repair shop" piece, I am specifically referring to guns originally built during the Syracuse NY production era then rebuilt during the Hunter Arms production era; and more specifically Syracuse era barrels used to fabricate an otherwise new gun with the then Hunter Arms Company production features. These guns can be easily identified by virtue of the fact that serial numbers from those Syracuse era barrels were always retained for use with the new frame and other parts; and additionally will not be found in any of the serial number blocks used contained within any of the Hunter Arms serial number ledger books (remember that in 1919 when Hunter, and in 1946 with Marlin Firearms, established new numerical serial number blocks starting with SN#1 created some degree of serial number overlap, those new number blocks also have a letter prefix with each number to distinguish these later production guns from early period Smith guns). In my opinion Syracuse era guns re-barreled by Hunter Arms are not "repair shop" guns; they were simply repaired (re-barreled) and the original serial number, frames, stocks, and other Syracuse era parts retained. As FYI, I'd referenced in my original article a pistol gripped 10-bore C Grade Syracuse hammer gun converted by Hunter's repair shop to a Grade 2E straight gripped gun with HOT trigger option, that information edited out due to space limitations; but I would judge this gun to be more than simple a repair shop gun as it is actually a hammer to hammerless "conversion gun illustrating the additional capabilities of Hunter's workmen. In examining that gun the workers at Hunter Arms had done quite of bit of work to the Syracuse era barrels in order to convert them from a roll-check extractor gun to an auto-ejector gun. And for what it's worth, the owner of that gun still had the original C Grade Stock and hammer frame in his barn; and when John Houchins was writing his book and unable to find an example of C Grade hammer gun to photograph, that was the hammer frame used and featured in his book. When checking those photos take note of the fact that the forend is missing (lost to time) and that the opening lever is well to the right; for although the modified barrels still perfectly fit the frame, the rib extension has be modified slightly and will not allow the rotary bolt to engage.
Finally, and although many Smith guns were returned to Hunter's repair shop over the decades for various items of work and repair, those produced during the Hunter Arms era would never be judged "repair shop" guns as the serial numbers assigned to those guns and recorded in the shipping ledgers was always retained. Hope this helps.