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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury. Recently I pulled out my inherited (Father-in-Law) S&W Model 36 Chief Special Square Butt for an IDPA Back Up Gun match. Other than being engraved with his name and having the time tested Tyler T-Grip installed, this old 38 Special 1&7/8" barrel is as he purchased it in 1950. Goes bang every time and is about 95% good blue. Pinned barrel, 4/5 digit serial number yadayadayada...

While not dead last either against other JFrame shooters, I missed alot and did not shine. Therefore the modification desire rose in me. Polish off the serrations (OK), Action job (OK) but the fingernail thin front sight is not satisfactory to my old eyes. The SQ butt means I can not use my favored PGS stocks and I would like to have a 3" barrel and not the tiny little one.

I am a shooter and not a collector. I cannot/will not sell the gun but I was thinking of a trip to Bowen at some point to address all my issues. Am I as crazy as I think I am?
 

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Or two. I don't know what Bowens rates.

Consider that if it's butchered up its no longer 'his' gun. I'm not against modifying pieces for specific needs but to pay to change it into a fairly common configuration isn't logical.


Regards,

Pat
 

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Oberstit,

I would sure vote to put the Smith away and go get yourself a new Ruger SP101 for the competition stuff. You will save the old Smith, save a lot of money at Bowens, and you can shoot the fire out of the Ruger for the next 30 years. It has a nice wide ramp front site and a variety of aftermarket grips are made for it.

By the way, Hogue makes grips for the square butt J frames - I have a tulipwood set on my 36 and like them very much. I am getting to the point where I do not like to put to much wear and tear on my really nice, older blued S&Ws as they are getting harder and harder to find in nice condition.

PGM
 

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One other solution to the grip problem is to find a set of later stocks to use with the T-Grip; the newer stocks aren't as rounded and may feel better to you. They sure do to me.

I have tried any number of aftermarket grips on J frames and none work better for me than late square butt stocks with a T-Grip.


Regards,

Pat
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks to all. First, the old boy would not mind. And, I can tell you that anything sent to Bowen Custom is not butchered. I recommend him to you. You are correct however in that he is not cheap or even reasonable - 'spensive, actually. I know I can get another gun from probably less than half of my proposed cost. Don't want another gun. I have reached the station in life that I have my guns (exceptions for things not yet made). Heck I have just paid 500 to have my old BHP restored to its former glory, have my Model 13 in for rebuild, engraving (50%) and refinishing (oh, yeah - stocks by Roy F too in time), and plan to put my original Colt 1911 (1974 - only the frame and detent housing are original) in for 100% engraving and refinishing in honor of John Moses Browning in 2011. I may reconsider on the barrel and butt tho'. I have a firm rule, if I don't shoot it within a year, I sell it. Thanks, STA
 
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