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S&W M1917

M1917 BritishArmy M1917 M1917 Indy M1917 Steel Finish M1917 IndyHW

195 GBP  /  250 USD  /  220 Euros

Tanaka:

WWII / WWII British Army

Smith&Wesson M1917 .455 Revolver

6 1/2in Barrel Version

             
                         
             
                         
             
 

Brand new Tanaka Works:  Smith&Wesson M1917 revolver .455 Webley

Brand new, includes box, instructions 6x Tanaka .455 firing cartridges (reusable).

N-Frame series, double action with swing out cylinder and lanyard ring.  Full Smith&Wesson markings.

Weight loaded: approx. 545

Constructions: heavyweight Abs and metal parts

Open barrel for venting smoke

We ship internationally. Any questions please ask away:  sales@mg-props.co.uk

PFC Primer caps:   €11.00  / £8.50 per box  (1 box = 100 PFC caps)  These are needed to make the bang and smoke!

Spare .455 cartridges:   22.50 Euros  / £18.50 GBP for six :    Cartridges take 1x PFC primer cap

Triple PFC Cap Cartridges:   30.95 Euros  / £26.45 GBP    Cartridges take 3x PFC primer caps per cartridge for loud bang and flash!

Real Wood Grips:  37.30 Euros  / £28.95 GBP :

Brief info on the Smith&Wesson M1917 revolver

Chambered in .455 Webley for contracts to the British Army. The US Army’s standard pistol was the Browning-designed Colt .45ACP M1911 and upon their entrance in the Great War, they placed orders for as many 1911s as could be manufactured.  However a little math revealed that there would be a shortfall between how many men they needed in the field and how many 1911 pistols could be delivered from all production sources on time. Thinking outside the box, they asked S&W if they could redesign a revolver to fire the same .45 ACP round (of which they had many) and deliver thousands of them ASAP.

Smith and Wesson immediately knew their plan of attack; taking their Hand Ejector .455 design and changing out the cylinder to accept the new caliber, they could be in production in weeks. Smith and Wesson proposed to the US Army a six shot double-action revolver with a solid frame and swing out cylinder to have a standard 5.5-inch barrel and a 10.8-inch overall length. Since the .45ACP was a rimless cartridge meant to be fired in autoloading firearms with an ejector/extractor, the cylinder featured recesses machined into the face so that the rounds could be held securely while still having a safe headspace. 

SW Model 1917 revolvers were put into play immediately during World War 1. It served as the sidearm of officers, infantryman and support personnel on multiple fronts of the conflict. The revolver proved a solid, durable and reliable system even in the harshest of conditions and gave a good account of itself in combat. The Smith & Wesson Model 1917 series - like the Colt Model 1917 - survived the war and saw use in the conflicts to follow, a testament to its strong design and engineering. After World War 1, Smith & Wesson continued to offer their Model 1917 to police and civilian markets sensing recent war-time performance as a tremendous selling point for the product. In 1920, a rimmed .45 cartridge - the ".45 Auto Rim" - was introduced by the Peters Cartridge Company which allowed moon clips to be disused. Smith & Wesson also manufactured all-new cylinders to handle the standard .45 ACP cartridge of the M1911 and offered these to M1917 owners.

As was the case with many successful World War 1-era firearms, the Smith & Wesson M1917 revolver line continued in service into World War 2 (1939-1945) alongside the competing Colt Model 1917 revolvers and the Colt M1911 semi-automatic pistols where it continued to provide good service. In the pre-war years, the Brazilian government placed an order for 25,000 SW M1917s and designated them as the "M1937" with slight alterations to suite Brazilian military requirements. M1917s then soldiered on in one form or another throughout the Korean War and into the Vietnam War to which the type gradually decreased in their available numbers, making them something of collector's items today. M1917s served in an official capacity until 1954 though

Like the early 1911s, all of the M1917s were made with a lanyard ring at the bottom of the grip so that soldiers would be less likely to lose them. Weighing in at 36-ounces it was very close to the same weight as the Colt 1911, held one round less, was considered by some to be more accurate with a slightly longer barrel/sight picture, reliable as any Smith and Wesson revolver and could be placed into production immediately.

The Smith & Wesson M1917 made it into the army’s hands in time to equip the first Military Police units in France during WWI

While it never replaced the standard M1911 Colt longslide, it saw significant service with 163,476 manufactured and a little over 130,000 shipped before the war ended in November 1918. Almost immediately after WWI, the US military put the big Smith in storage as they had enough Colts to go around once it returned to its peacetime size.

During the 1920s and 30s several were loaned to other government departments such as the Postal Service and Treasury to help defend against robberies. Still others were sold as surplus. Those remaining in Uncle Sam’s closet were called out again in World War 2 and issued to front line troops. It was well liked in harsh climates due to its reliability, ease in cleaning, fast immediate action drill on misfires, and simplicity of training. Examples continued to show up in US soldiers’ holsters as late as the Vietnam conflict.

On the civilian market, S&W soon started selling the model commercially, with a better finish and checkered grips.  They found enough customers to keep the piece in and out of production until the 1940s by which point another 11,200 commercial model had entered the market. In 1920, Remington-Peters introduced the .45 Auto Rim cartridges, a .45ACP with a rim around the edge to work in the growing population of new and surplus Colt and S&W Model 1917s. The use of these rounds, still in production today by Corbon and others, eliminated the need for half-moon or full moon clips. Heck even that adventurer of the 1930s, the fictional Indiana Jones, chose to carry one.

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