I am wanting to buy a used S&W 357. What does pinned and recessed mean? Was this on certain models or for a certain amount of years? Is there an advantage to having or not having a gun that is pinned and recessed? Thanks for any input:
I am not certain what model .357 you are contemplating but here is some information that hopefully will assist you in your decision.
Inside of the yolk (the frame portion where the cylinder opens) there will be a stamp indicating the model number, for example 27 or 627. Quite often next to the model number separated by a hyphen there will be a generation number. For example 27-2. Each generation number represents some type of model change. (see below) Relative to a model 27 the -3 generation represented the elimination of the recessed cylinders and pinned barrels. The stainless 627s saw the recessed cylinders and pinned barrels eliminated with the -1 generation. So, if you are looking for a stainless gun you would want to look for a 627 "no dash." From my perspective I would attempt to find a model 27-2 either blued or nickel plated. Among other things, the recessed cylinders resulted in a reduced gap between the rear cylinder face and the recoil shield. It just looks better. Also the 27-2s tend to have better lock work resulting in a smoothing trigger and hammer operation. The barrel pins were, as someone previously stated, installed to prevent the barrel from unscrewing under recoil. When the pin was eliminated S&W went to a "crush fit." I would also look for one manufactured prior to 1978 when S&W discontinued carbona bluing which was superior to the hot tank "dip and ship" that replaced it. Finally, if you decide on a nickel plated 27 you will need to remove the grips and make certain that there are no remark stamps indicating that the gun was sent back to S&W for it to be nickel plated. There is nothing wrong with the ones send back but from a collector point of view it does not have the same value as one originally shipped as a nickel gun. Finally, for guns with service wood stocks, the right stock on the frame side will be numbered to the gun. Target stocks were not numbered to the gun. Hope this helps.
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