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Holsters for S&W top-break copies


Rex M Rugers #6621
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I have always been a bit intrigued by the S&W copies , from the first Schofields and Russians , and now the American and last but not least , my favorite , the New Model #3 that Taylor's calls the Frontier model. 

My question is this , will all these different top-breaks fit the same holster , as far as frame size. I know barrel length is different on some , but just the basic fit is what I am curious about.

Next question , do any of our popular CAS  leathersmiths offer a selection for the top-breaks , or is it a custom order only?

Rex :D , who will be needing one soon.

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Hunter holsters make a Texas Jockstrap holster that is cut low enough at the top to not hit the latch. They are decent midquality holsters that work well. They are not the equal of a Mernickle, but certainly are serving me well.

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  • 3 weeks later...

TripleK Sonorans work great for my Navy Arms Russians.  Don’t the adjustable sights disqualify the Taylor Frontiers from SASS main matches?

 

 

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Edited by WOLFY
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Howdy

 

When I got my first S&W New Model Number Three I wanted a fancy holster for it, so I had El Paso Saddlery make up a Slim Jim holster for it. I paid a few extra dollars and had it lined and border stamping applied.

 

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When I bought a Schofield I had another holster made up just like the first.

 

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My 2nd Model Russian also fits in these holsters.

 

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This particular holster has some wear on it now, but when I bought a second NM#3 it fits in fine too.

 

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For those times I bring my Merwin Hulbert Pocket army, it too fits into these holsters. Note, these holsters have no plug at the bottom, so the slightly longer barrel of the MH pokes through at the bottom with no problem.

 

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Although these are all originals, I'm sure the modern replicas would fit fine in these holsters.

 

It has been sometime since I bought these holsters. They were standard models from El Paso, but they were both made custom for me. When ordering there are options available. You just check the options you want, regarding barrel length, right or left, straight hang or cross draw, belt width, lining, and stamping.

 

I strongly recommend spending the few extra dollars on a lined holster for a prized revolver, so the finish will not get scratched.

Edited by Driftwood Johnson, SASS #38283
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28 minutes ago, WOLFY said:

Don’t the adjustable sights disqualify the Taylor Frontiers from SASS main matches?

 

It used to be that revolvers with adjustable sights, such as a Ruger Blackhawk, were legal in the Modern category.

 

I can't keep track of the changes in categories these days, but if Blackhawks are legal in any category, I have to assume the Taylors Frontier with its adjustable rear sight would be legal in the same category.

 

By the way, the adjustable rear sight on the Taylors Frontier model is nothing like the adjustable rear sight on a modern Blackhawk.

 

While not a Taylors Frontier rear sight, this is the rear sight on a S&W 44 Double Action Target Model. It is only adjustable for windage, by loosening the two screws and sliding the sight blade to one side, then tightening the screws again. There is no adjustment for elevation, only windage, and the groove in the blade is very small. Nothing like the big rear sight on a Ruger Blackhawk. From what I have seen, the rear sight on Taylors Frontier model duplicates this sight.

 

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Compare that to the rear sight on my old 45 Colt/45ACP convertible Blackhawk. Yup. this revolver is over 40 years old and the finish could use a bit of touchup.

 

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Thanks Driftwood, I acquired a 3 rd NM Russian and it’s rear sight looks like it can be moved L-R.  I was thinking on jb welding it at dead center.

Edited by WOLFY
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8 minutes ago, WOLFY said:

Thanks Driftwood, I acquired a 3 rd NM Russian and it’s rear sight looks like it can be moved L-R.  I was thinking on jb welding it at dead center.

I would use Loctite that you can break later instead of JB Weld.

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Not really sure what you mean when you say "3 rd NM Russian".

 

I am not aware of the Russian model, 1st, 2nd or 3rd being made with adjustable sights.

 

The New Model Number Three was made in a target version with adjustable sights. This is one that I am still kicking myself for not buying. Notice the adjustable rear sight and the target type front sight, which incidentally is not the same as the front sight on the Taylors Frontier model. This one was chambered for the  S&W 38-44 target cartridge, not to be confused with the high powered 38-44 round of the 1930s.

 

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This is a page from a reprint of the 1900 S&W catalog. Yes, it does call this model out as the Russian model, but modern collectors refer to this model as the New Model Number three.

 

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This page from the 1900 catalog shows some of the many cartridges that model was chambered for (over 17 in all IIRC). The 38-44 is second down on the left. Basically an elongated 38 S&W, with the bullet completely contained within the case, not protruding out at all.  Revolvers chambered for this cartridge had the chambers bored through the entire length of the cylinder and there was almost no bullet jump at all as the bullet left the case. These were very accurate revolvers.

 

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Frankly, if you have an antique, I would not suggest using J.B. Weld on it, that would affect the value.

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37 minutes ago, WOLFY said:

Thanks Driftwood, I acquired a 3 rd NM Russian and it’s rear sight looks like it can be moved L-R.  I was thinking on jb welding it at dead center.

 

Using JB Weld or Loctite to prevent an adjustable sight from moving does NOT make it a "fixed sight" legal for those categories that require one.
 

The only approved method for conversion of the S&W reproductions is:

Quote

The Beretta “Laramie” rear latch with the adjustable rear sight may be replaced with the rear latch (with fixed sight) from the “Russian” Model to be allowed as a fixed sight model revolver.

SHB p.35

Taylor's NM #3 "Frontier" model has the same adjustable sight.
 

If yours is an original, I don't know of the sight parts would interchange to convert it to fixed sights.
 

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In the two weeks since I opened this post , I have received my new Taylor's Frontier Model , and ordered a holster from Springfield Slim.

I shoot in the Cattle Baron category , so care less about the rear sight being adjustable.

I am just happy to finally have a Smith & Wesson (copy) of my own.. At least it is a 44 Special , that is what I held out for.

As always , a big Thanks to Driftwood Johnson for his sharing of Smith & Wesson top-breaks knowledge. And pictures.

Rex :D

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38 minutes ago, Rex M Rugers #6621 said:

In the two weeks since I opened this post , I have received my new Taylor's Frontier Model , and ordered a holster from Springfield Slim.

I shoot in the Cattle Baron category , so care less about the rear sight being adjustable.

I am just happy to finally have a Smith & Wesson (copy) of my own.. At least it is a 44 Special , that is what I held out for.

As always , a big Thanks to Driftwood Johnson for his sharing of Smith & Wesson top-breaks knowledge. And pictures.

Rex :D

CATTLE BARON....surely not.   But wait, WE are, aren't WE?

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Good going OP.  I want a 44 spl one as well.

 

How similar is your rear sight?  Mine’s a Navy Arms Uberti.

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Driftwood and Pale Wolf- rather than jump Rex Rugers thread I bumped my .44 Uberti one.

Edited by WOLFY
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1 hour ago, Billy Boots, # 20282 LTG-Regulator said:

CATTLE BARON....surely not.   But wait, WE are, aren't WE?

Whooda thunk it.:lol:  By the middle of next year I will be jumping to the next category.(Birthday June 30).

Doesn't seem logical. Be an official Geezer.:lol:

Rex :D

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34 minutes ago, Rex M Rugers #6621 said:

Whooda thunk it.:lol:  By the middle of next year I will be jumping to the next category.(Birthday June 30).

Doesn't seem logical. Be an official Geezer.:lol:

Rex :D

I hit 77 next August.  God has blessed us.

We sure had some good time in our silhouette days also.

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As always, Driftwood provides some great information and images.  And is typical, he does it before me.  :)   So, I am content to do a follow up.

First, this is my standard holster.


Holster.thumb.jpg.5eb8435812303b81865c1ca74de1fb9b.jpg

 

I got a pair of them at Cabelas a few years ago.    They were 10 bucks then, but are up to 30 now.  
https://www.cabelas.com/shop/en/triple-k-western-style-holster?ds_e=GOOGLE&ds_c=Shop|Generic|AllProducts|High|SSCCatchAll&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI6JbFjIyo8wIViojICh2YRQrxEAQYASABEgL7H_D_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

I just wanted a simple, generic, inexpensive holster.  I have never regretted these, and I use them for just about everything except for my Walker and Dragoon.  They are not big enough for that.   

Here are some relevant examples, with the first one for reference.

2076521746_SAAHolstered.thumb.jpg.ce544561c777391b98325d26d644c165.jpg

 

This is a 7.5" 2nd Gen SAA.  As you can see, it fits perfectly.   But, now, on to the matter at hand, S&W Top Breaks.

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This is the new reproduction American that is imported by Cimarron.  It's great pistol.  This one is a .45.   I wanted .44 Special, but it's all I could find.  :)

 

1122733361_AmericanHolstered.thumb.jpg.28e703ff986c6de7ad27e7f88a0c8610.jpg

 

American holstered.

 

Schofield.thumb.jpg.891141a53b6637cc37ea3f13495bac7b.jpg

 

This is a reproduction Schofield.  Also a .45.

 

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Schofield holstered.

 

I do not have a Russian model, so I don't know how it will fit.  The Russian is very similar to the American, so I think it would fit, and I don't think the spur would get in the way, but this is all speculation.

403879376_NewModel3.thumb.jpg.ccecc664dfae581e4afa888b99a15120.jpg

 

This is a real S&W New Model 3.  I do have a target model like Driftwood posted, but this is a standard one in .44-40.

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For reference, here's what the non adjustable sights on a standard New Model 3 looked like.  The target sites on it are identical to the target sites on Driftwood's Model 3 DA.  These are also the sites on a standard Model 3 DA.

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New Model 3 holstered.

 

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This is the Model 3 DA, also in .44-40

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Model 3 DA in the holster.  Oddly, of all the S&W's, this one fits the best.  :)

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Driftwood also mentioned the Merwin & Hulbert.  It's unique ejection system aside, the M&H was very similar to the S&W Model 3's.  In fact, many internal parts in the action are interchanable.   This one was repaired by the great Happy Trails using S&W parts, for example.  Another .44-40.

1752399086_MerwinHulbertHolstered.thumb.jpg.0018e69b83d2ce04450f886e0cd6e657.jpg

 

Fits just as well as the S&W's.

Finally, I'd like to say that the S&W Top breaks are BIG pistols.  Or at least they are big looking pistols.   Here's a pic of all of them together with the SAA in the pic for a sense of scale.

2139975922_TopsBreaks.thumb.jpg.3638d41ba1014020960f3d776796304f.jpg

So, there's a quick run down of a holster that I think works well with the S&W Top Breaks.   Hope you found it interesting.

The Colt is a .45, BTW.

 



 

Edited by H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619
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I think @Driftwood Johnson, SASS #38283 showed a lot of great stuff in his pics, but one thing that didn't show too clearly was the way a holster front will work or not work with the Shofield vs. the #3 latch. A holster not cut low enough will actually release the Schofield latch when holstering due to the latch releasing to the rear. The #3 does not suffer this fate as it's latch lifts upward, so check the holster if you are using a Schofield [don't ask me how I found this out!].

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13 hours ago, H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619 said:

For what it's worth, I've never had a problem with the holster opening my Schofield.  :)

 

 

I had it happen once! That holster is now reserved strictly for non-Schofield use!

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