Thursday Day at the Range

Smith & Wesson Model 10 Heavy Barrel

This week’s Thursday day at the Range included a double action revisit of a true classic: a Smith & Wesson Model 10 Heavy Barrel. Pretty ordinary, you’d say; pretty common, you’d say. Ah, but you might not think so if you noticed the cartouche that’s partially covered by the grip: CPD in a circle.
“CPD” refers to “Cleveland Police Department, of Cleveland, Ohio. The third picture shows what I call the “library card,” the property record for this revolver. When the CPD began to rearm with semiautomatic pistols, Officer James Scully purchased the revolver in 1982.
The revolver was fitted with Mershon grips during its service with the CPD. Mershon “10 Point” grips were de rigueur in police circles at the time. Mershon was purchased by Pachmayr, which in turn was purchased by Lyman. Today’s Pachmayr “Presentation” grips for revolvers are the contemporary descendants of those classic police grips from the ’50s and ’60s.
Compared to my pre-war Military and Police .38 with its “long action,” the postwar (’48 and on) short double action feels noticeably different. This is not to say that there’s anything deficient about the DA pull, it’s just different.
This particular revolver is a typical example of the police revolver in that appears to have been carried a lot but shot very little. This go-round explored S&W’a trigger in double action. The usual protocol applies, seven yards, unsupported standing Weaver, best of five, five-shot targets with 158-grain round nose flat points.. Compare the results with the earlier single-action results with wadcutters in the second picture.
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