Handguns and Ammunition Forum banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
354 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Saw an "N" frame with target stocks (mod. 57) that had the serial # removed from grip frame. Upon removing the stocks I found the bottom of grip frame smooth-no serial number. Closer examination revealed a blued steel insert had been dovetailed into frame, with a like section (containing ser. number) having been removed. The ser. number is still present at yoke/crane. I've seen a LOT of old S&W's, but never encountered this. Does anyone have a clue what this is/means? Oh, the revolver is easily 95% with evidence of little (if ever) firing. My thanks.
 
G

·
It's a violation of federal firearms law to remove the serial number(s) from a firearm, but if not all of the original s/n's have beem removed ("The ser. number is still present at yoke/crane.") owning the firearm may not put you in legal jeapordy. I would get something in writing from the BATFE on the issue before I purchased the handgun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,053 Posts
The ATF has (or at least used to, have not checked in a while) a provision for moving a serial number (not the same as removing).

It is possible that this procedure was followed to the letter here but I am curious as to why?.

The most common serial number movement I know occurrs on custom Brownings where the # is located on the Front Strap and folks want checkering or some other F.S. treatment.

Jim H.
 
G

·
I believe that such serial number transfering is limited to, at minimum, a FFL-1 licensed gunsmith, if not a FFL-2 or FFL-2 licensed one. And if none of the original serial-numbering still exists on the handgun (i.e. it's been transferred elsewhere on the handgun, for a reason such as Jim H. mentioned) I would be hesistant to take possesion of the handgun unless it came with documention from the gunsmith. Owning the item wouldn't be an issue (unless the BATFE or law enforcement somehow got involved with it while you owned it and saw the serial number issue that you describe), but you might have a very difficult time selling it to a gunshop or otherwise licensed gun dealer. A private party sale or trade would be much easier, given the receiver didn't notice or care about the issue.


But since the original factory s/n's are still present on a couple of the parts I would guess that you would be O.K. I would e-mail an inquiry with the BATFE regarding this issue. Whatever they respond with will be the documentation from them covering you (assuming that the situation you describe is "kosher" with them). The BATFE is very humorless when it comes to violating federal firearms laws.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
283 Posts
as far as i can tell from what you describe, someone has made that pistol illegal. the serial number must be located on the frame of the pistol. the frame is what the ATF considers the firearm. numbered small parts will not cut it.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top