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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was in a mall nearby my office with a friend yesterday afternoon, and we did a quick recon through the mall's gun shop.

They had an old no-dash S&W model 36 Chief's Special, square butt 2" in 85-90% condition for $189. The timing was a little slow on one chamber, but it wouldn't make any practical difference.

Anyway, generally Chief's Specials sell for $350-395 around here - I felt like this one was about $150 too cheap, and I told the guys behind the counter that they ought to adjust the price. They suggested that I buy it, instead.

Well, I resisted for about 45 minutes. I went back to the office, and then later spoke to my wife when we were leaving town. She told me that I should go for it, so I called the shop up. They've put it behind the counter with my name on it, and I'll go pick it up the next time I'm up in Santa Fe (on Tuesday). :)

(I really need to get a digital camera one of these days, so I can post photos of these little dandies.)

Anyway, I'm pretty tickled to have run across a good deal. Heaven knows I don't need another small .38 special, but they're just so neat.
 

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Hi Erich,

That sounds like a "sweet deal".

I enjoy "bargain" shopping for handguns and like to find things that I can use for points of negotiation, i.e. wear, condition. My favorite with .45 autos is the "idiot scratch" that novices enjoy putting on their frames when they assemble/disassemble the pistol. ;)

If I visit the same shops, I also look at firearms that sit and sit for months and make an offer. The salesman/owner is usually anxious to turn over their inventory, so I get a really good deal.

I like the Chief's Special and have been looking for one priced right for the past year or so.

Great deal!

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks, gents! :)

Chris, I do the same thing - just looking for deals that I can't pass up. If I don't fall in love with the gun, I can always get my money back out of it and pass the deal along to a friend.

With the upsurge in increase in the 1911, I've noted that it's getting difficult to find one without the idiot mark! (A friend and I spent a day last weekend shopping for a new 1911 for him. We found two that he just couldn't pass up, and I saw a number that grabbed me as well.)
 
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Erich, a friend of mine has a flat latch, sent it to the factory, it came back like new, and all this for about $150. He says it looks like great. Regards, Richard:D
 

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Hi there Erich,

Back in November, I came across a 4" Colt Peacekeeper and made a deal that netted me about a $150.00 in savings on its book value. At the time, I was picking between it (the Peacekeeper) and a Ruger S/S Security Six. IMHO, the Colt was the better choice based on "collector's value".

When I got home, I ran a solvent soaked cleaning patch through the barrel and cylinder chambers and to my suprise, there was no fouling--period! The only wear on the original finish was muzzle from being carried in a holster. I surmised that the revolver had not been fired after purchase.

I have been on the loose searching now for ".38 snubby" ever since and am waiting to see if I can grab a early model Smith and Wesson J-frame in stainless steel. :)

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Richard, I had not even thought about that, but S&W's custom shop folks have an excellent reputation, and the tariff seems quite reasonable.

Chris, I seem to be doomed to pick up and trade-off small .38s. I will have four when I pick this one up. :) I'm trying to back off on the "trading-off" part of my deal.

There's sure nothing wrong with a stainless Smith. I had a terrific model 60 (stainless Chief's Special) in .38 that was one of the NY-1 guns (originally a DAO issued to an NYPD officer) but that had been refurbed by S&W into traditional configuration (but still bore the PD frame markings). I picked it up for $225 (a screaming deal) back in '91 or so, and I later traded it to a friend (never should have) for a Winchester pre-64 94 and some other stuff. This one wasn't early, like you're looking for (a 1965 would be cool, wouldn't it? :) ), but it was a great gun.

That Peacekeeper should do the trick for you, too. I always liked the looks of those, though I preferred the looks of the 6" tube. (Too much to carry the long bbl, though, so I understand why the 4" makes more sense.)
 

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Hi Erich,

I like the idea of having just more than (a collection of)one...Unfortunately, if I run into Smith and Wesson J frame .38 snubby priced just right, I just know its going to be mine. There's one up at the gunshop, a ladysmith Model 642, but it's still priced high at $395.00/used and unfired.

I want to find a stainless steel one. Because, I live about 4 blocks off of the Atlantic Ocean, and I can tell my wife that I just needed at least one stainless steel handgun...salt air, you know... ;)

Chris
 
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