K-22 1st Model Smith & Wesson “K22 Outdoorsman” 22 LR 6” Revolver, C&R

SOLD FOR: $1,100

WOA#: WY240321BS075

Make: Smith & Wesson

Model: The K22 Outdoorsman

Serial Number: 632312

Year of Manufacture: 1931

Caliber: .22 Long Rifle

Action Type: 6-Shot, Double Action / Single Action, Swing-Out, Fluted Cylinder Revolver

Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “SMITH & WESSON”, the right is marked “22 Long Rifle”.The top of the barrel is marked “Smith and Wesson Springfield Mass. USA / Patented Feb.6.08 Sept.14.09.Dec.29.14” The hammer round is marked “Reg.US.Pat.Off”  The side plate has S&W’s monogram logo and the right side of the frame has “Made in USA”. The yoke cut is marked with the “199”. The butt is marked with the serial number “632312”. The flat under the barrel is marked with the serial number “632312”. The yoke is marked “199” and the right side of the grip frame has inspector marks. Inside of the presentation level Circassian walnut grips are not marked

Barrel Length: 6”

Sights / Optics: The front sight is a patridge pinned to a swell that is integral to the barrel. The sight is impregnated with a brass pin. The rear sight is a round top leaf with a square notch base that is adjustable for windage and elevation.

Stock Configuration & Condition:  The  presentation level Circassian walnut  grips are like new for their age of 93 years old. Sporting S&W medallions. There is  some little compression, noticeable on the left side at the top. Checkering is still very sharp.There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in about Excellent condition.

Type of Finish: Blued

Finish Originality: Original

Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is sharp. There is no erosion in the bore. In this writer’s opinion the bore rates 9.5/10.

Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 95% of its metal finish and displays very little signs of operation.  The turn line is apparent but intermittent.  There are a few scattered light handling marks and light finish loss near the muzzle also on the ejection rod.  The screw heads are sharp to faintly tool marked. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in about very fine condition.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The  recessed cylinder locks up with light play on each chamber when the trigger is depressed. The double-action trigger is smooth and the single action is extremely light and crisp. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.

Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None

Our Assessment: “From 1910 onward Smith and Wesson Hand Ejector revolvers came in target variations equipped with adjustable sights. Rimfire revolvers built on the .32 frame were considered heavyweights and the first serious effort toward a .22 built on the 38 (K) frame did not come about until 1931. The high velocity .22 long rifle cartridge had become popular and the company advertised the new K-22 “Outdoorsman” as being specifically designed for the high speed round.

It was marketed to hunters and outdoorsmen in a climate that could not have been less ideal. The Great Depression was in full swing and there was a serious effort to include handguns in the prohibitive tax and registration structure of the Federal Firearms act of 1932 and 34. Nevertheless the K 22 was an immediate success with well-heeled sportsmen as well as police and military training programs.

Smith and wesson Standard catalog – “Caliber .22 LR, DA revolver built on  a square butt K frame with five screws, 6- shot fluted cylinder with (recessed) counterbores, blue finish 6 inch round pinned barrel with no rib, Patridge front sight,K target frame with floating firing pin and flat faced hammer, Circassian walnut grips with small silver medallions on a square butt frame, non shrouded extractor rod, smooth semi-round topstrap with an adjustable rear sight for windage and elevation. Built on the .38 Hand Ejector frame and numbered within the M&P 1905 4th change series in a serial range beginning 632124 and running through about 682419. The first example of this revolver was presented to Douglas Wesson on January 3, 1931, reported as serial number 632132. Weight of this model is 35.5 oz.19,500 Manufactured c. 1931-1940. K frame 22, pre-micrometer adjustable sights, with the Long action.”

Supica –Standard Catalog of Smith and Wesson records that an Army team took several K 22s to the 1932 Olympics providing an early launch into the mainstream target circuit. By 1940, shooters or agencies had bought 19,500 of the first model and a second model was in the catalogs as “A replica of that favorite, the .38 M&P Target Revolver” (Stoeger-Shooter’s Bible). By this time, it had become the K 22 ‘Masterpiece’ and was firmly identified with organized target shooting. Wartime rationing stopped production in 1941 with something over 1,000 units of the second models out the door.

Post-War production resumed in 1946 with the K-22 becoming part of a target set including the K-38 and the redesigned, Post-War K-32. The revolver assumed the profile that would define the Smith Hand Ejectors until 1989. Variations abound and generally follow the evolution of the Smith Hand Ejectors as a family.

This earliest of Model K-22 Outdoorsman S&W revolver from 1931 is truly in Excellent condition for a gun over 90 years old. The serial number alone puts it within the first 200 ever produced, 188th  off the line by my count. This is a beautiful old revolver that the whole family can enjoy especially for collecting. I highly encourage you to take a look at the condition in our pictures.-K.F.

K-22 1st Model Smith & Wesson “K22 Outdoorsman” 22 LR 6” Revolver, C&R
K-22 1st Model Smith & Wesson “K22 Outdoorsman” 22 LR 6” Revolver, C&R