A 1911 Commander's Model Revolver
The Commander’s Model or Shortened Model Nagant Revolver - Part 2
Table of Contents for the Shortened Nagant Pages
The prewar version of the Commander’s Model is VERY rare. It is likely that most of the survivors were made into Second model MTs-4s if they weren’t simply “used up”.
The only example of a prewar revolver I have been able to examine shows many of the same features as the 1924-1930 versions, but also some interesting differences. It is unknown if they were given their own serial number range but it seems unlikely as the observed revolver has a serial № of 7372 of 1911 production.
(From the collection of Robert Brooker - many thanks!)
Serial № 7372 1911 production.
This revolver shows almost all of the frame and component modifications that would be seen in the 1924-30 versions. The front sight is tall like the 1924 and 1925 versions, the trigger guard has the reduced size, the hammer and frame have the smoothed, rounded lines and the grip insert does not have the reinforcing lamination at the bottom. The most unusual feature is the change of shape on the loading gate tab. It is smoothed down so that it shouldn’t catch on a pocket when being inserted or removed. This feature has not been observed on the later (post WWI) revolvers.
Note the rounded/tapered shape of the tab on the loading gate. This feature has not been observed on any post war shortened revolver.
Serial № 7372 1911 production. This picture shows a lot about the pre war example. Note the cutouts in the grip plate for the attachment screw and loading gate spring and screw. The frame is reduced in height at the rear of the top strap, the hammer rounded and the trigger guard has the same contours as the post WWI versions with the very narrow front lip and smaller size where it blends behind the trigger.
Left side markings: The post 1909 XX AC mark is very high to accommodate the higher grip plate location of the shortened revolver. The accuracy proof and hammer OTK mark on the front of the frame are just like a “big ones”.
The early tall 7.0 mm front sight and hammer OTK mark
Serial № 3810 1925 production
This is the second earliest post WWI short revolver observed by the author (the other was also a 1925). It exhibits all of the features seen in late production except the short front sight and the reinforcing laminate in the grip insert. 1925, at least in the experience of the author, seems to be most common year observed in the shortened revolver.
Side views Serial № 3810 1925 production
1924 and 1925 dated “shorties” have the 7.0 mm tall front sight - 1.0 mm shorter than the standard service revolver, but 1.2 mm taller than the later short sight seen 1926-1930.
The Shortened revolvers have locator pins in the grip inserts that hold the insert in place in the grip. Here, the pins can be seen in the insert. The extra hole is probably a fixturing hole used during manufacture. 1925s don't have the reinforcing lamination.
1925 dated shortened revolvers seem to be marked identically to their full size counterparts. The AC mark is the small лб and big hammer mark. The front frame marks are a non circled, face down 'К' accuracy proof, a Tula hammer OTK mark and a small letter between the two marks -this one has a 'з'.
Serial № 1403 1926 production.
The most noticeable feature of this shortened revolver is the unusual front sight. It is a notched version different from the later 1932 version. This sight insert is not hammer OTK marked so it could have been part of the test programs being carried on in the period, or professionally made for someone. It is definitely not a homemade piece. Additionally, this particular revolver has the best trigger pull, both single and double action, that I have seen on any M1895 Nagant!
Left and right view of a 1926 dated Shortened revolver with an unusual front sight.
Open view of the 1926 short revolver with the notched test sight
This sight extends further back than a standard half moon so it wasn’t simply made from an existing standard sight. The sight blade doesn't show the standard Tula OTK hammer on the top surface of the dovetail insert.
Rear sight: This revolver also has a later style rear sight notch which wasn’t put into general production until mid 1932. Close examination shows that the 'U' shaped groove was cut in with a file after manufacture as the blue in the bottom of the original 'V' shaped groove is still visible.
This revolver has also had a bullet placed under the mainspring which has been thinned to reduce the double action trigger pull. The hammer and trigger have been modified for a very crisp single action pull.
Left: Taller Лб and hammer AC mark used from 1925 into early 1927 (the hammer would change by mid 1927). Right: Tula hammer OTK mark and non circled 'К' accuracy proof. Like the 1925 example it has the letter 'з' between the other two marks.
Serial № 9901 1927 production
This revolver is typical of the revolvers produced in the last 4 years of production. It has all the final manufacturing features including the 5.8 mm front sight and the reinforced grip insert. The only feature that would be changed by the end of production would be the change of 1928 (removal of the loading gate notch and matching frame lug).
Side views of Serial № 9901 1927 production
Open view of Serial № 9901 1927 production
More very soon!
We are currently under construction, please be patient as the site is loaded.