A Nurse with a Gun

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Pawn Shop Circuit: Target Magnum

After work today, I drove over to Neil's pawn shop to see what he had out. It had been a while since I last visited Neil. He kidded me about being lost as I peered through the glass countertop. Neil had a XD40, a Glock something or another, a Heritage Arms .22 revolver. Neil also had a hard chromed 9m Hi Power for $399, and a Charter Arms Undercover for $139. Not a bad selection, really, just not what I was scouting around for. Neil and I talked a bit and I bid him adieu.

I drove across town to Kenny's pawn shop, and Kenny beamed when I walked in the door. He chortled "I have an old Smith fer ya," and he pulled out a nickel plated 357. It was a Model 19-4 with a six inch barrel, and a partridge front sight. It was pinned and recessed. I swung open the cylinder, and examined the forcing cone closely with my bore light. Model 19s have a tendency to crack at the forcing cone when fed 125 grain ammo. Barrels are no longer available, so the forcing cone check is crucial. This Model 19 had a good forcing cone, so I shone the light on down the bore. The rifling was sharp. I pulled back the hammer to full cock, and tried to push it off the sear. It refused to be pushed off. Good.

Kenny was watching my actions closely. He finally asked the particulars of my checks, so I explained the steps as I went through Jim March's Revolver Checkout. Kenny asked me what I thought the gun was worth. The rear sight had a bit of rust on it, as well as a ding on the left side of the blade. The rubber grip was worn, but I prefer wood anyway. I flipped over the tag and read $239. I told Kenny "I figure this one is worth $239 today." Kenny grinned. We went through the gun purchasing protocol, and I drove away with a nickel Model 19-4 on the passenger seat of the Jeep.



Blogger Mulliga said...

Man. One day I'm going to have to move to Louisiana - here in Gainesville, that same gun probably would be $400, at least.

10:50 PM  
Anonymous Andre said...

The Model 19. When six shots was plenty, 'pinned and recessed' was for taken for granted, and bluing was so deep you could dip your fingers in it. One day these old S&W's are bound to be collectors pieces. Nice pick. I want one. Click-click-click. (Love that sound).

12:06 AM  
Blogger Dan from Madison said...

Boy have I missed the pawn shop circuit - thanks for posting on it again.

6:08 AM  
Blogger Conservative Scalawag said...

My knoweledge of revolvers is limited,especially with Smiths. But, you taught something new to look out for with the forcing cone check.

6:23 AM  
Blogger Joseph said...

Wish I could find old S&Ws for that price.

BTW, I don't doubt that K-Frame forcing cones have cracked, but I'd be pretty hesitant to say they are "prone" to it as much as I'd say a 350 Chevy small block is prone to cracked heads. Before I besmirched the good name of these revolvers, I'd want to see hard data on it, not just urban legends.

8:01 AM  
Anonymous Robb Allen said...

I hate you. With a passion.

I want to be able to just walk in and buy a firearm at will (and know then well enough to know what a used one is worth).

Right now I'm in need of a .22 pistol and a red dot sight. I want something the Mrs. will not only be able to shoot without the kick, but with a little training and a scope, be able to hit the 10 ring so often that she actually starts enjoying the sport.

8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sweet score.

9:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...



1:20 PM  
Blogger Freddyboomboom said...

I pulled sort of a "Xavier" the other day...

Last Sunday I found, at a local gun shop, a Ruger Standard (aka MK I) made in 1956 for about $150. It's been well used, a lot of the blueing is gone on the barrel and completely gone on the front strap and back strap. Some minor rust under the grips, but that's coming out without actual pitting so it's good.

I had to go back and buy it Wednesday...

4:11 PM  
Blogger lee n. field said...


I have a 19-4, 4" nickel. Sweetest shooting handgun I own.

6:30 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...


I wish the pawnshops around here were more like that! Instead, it's mostly new Bersas, Highpoints and other sub-prime handguns.

6:58 PM  
Blogger The Conservative UAW Guy said...

Very nice.

And nice price, too.

8:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...



8:56 PM  

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