Restoring Smith & Wesson .44 Russian Model 3 Pistol

Restoring Smith & Wesson .44 Russian Model 3 Pistol

This gun is the most beautiful thing that I have ever found and restored. Heavy, powerful, reliable and simply beautiful American-made revolver!

Smith & Wesson .44 Russian Model 3

American revolver

Smith & Wesson produced large numbers of the Model 3, in three distinct models, for the Russian Empire by special order. The first was the 1st Model Russian (the original order design), with the Russian Ordnance Inspector mandating a number of improvements to the design, resulting in the 2nd Model Russian, with a final revision to the Russian design being known as the 3rd Model Russian.

Smith & Wesson nearly went bankrupt as a result of their Russian contract production, as the imperial government assigned a number of engineers and gunsmiths to reverse-engineer the Smith & Wesson design, and then began to produce copies of the revolver—both in their own arsenal at Tula and by contracting other manufacturers in Germany and elsewhere in Europe to manufacture copies of the revolver (a common practice at the time—Webley & Scott’s British Bulldog revolver was widely copied, too, by European and American gunsmiths).

The Russian and European copies of the S&W Model 3 revolver were generally of very high quality, but considerably cheaper than the S&W produced revolvers. This led to the imperial government cancelling the order for significant quantities of Smith & Wesson–made revolvers (which Smith & Wesson had already produced), and delaying (or refusing) payment for the handguns that had already been delivered.

My revolver was found in the ruins of an old house. It was well preserved, but many details were broken.

smith & wesson model 3 44 russian

Gun after cleaning from dirt and rust.

smith & wesson model 3 44 russian

There were cartridges in the drum.

smith & wesson model 3 44 russian

Trigger is broken. Also there is no main spring.

Read: 5,000,000 Reichsmarks (Notgeld)

At first the gun was cleaned in water. Then it stayed for a long time in kerosene. After this, the process of heating and cooling took place. So I managed to disassemble the mechanism:


Complete disassembly. Sorry for the bad photos.

Next step was to create a wooden handle. For this, I used a piece of walnut. After manufacturing, the handle was saturated with wax:


Handle adjustment.

As a result, I got such a gun. All mechanisms work:

gun after restoration

Gun after restoration.

gun after the restoration

Gun after restoration. All mechanisms work.

Restoration of relic gun was very exciting.



Wordpress (0)
Disqus (0 )