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S&W 3566TSW Limited w/Frame-Mounted Safety


DCoop
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I have a 3566TSW Limited 5" with a frame-mounted thumb safety.  It's unusual variation compared to every other one I've seen photos of which have the standard slide-mounted safety.  Does anyone know the history of the frame-mounted safety variation in of the 3566?  How many were made in that variation?  Could it be ordered from Performance Center as an option?  I've seen photos of other open-style S&W competition pistols with that same safety, but no other 3566TSW.  Thanks.

Edited by DCoop
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If you haven't looked it up already...the Standard Catalog of Smith and Wesson describes the 3566TSW Limited that came in .356TSW in five product codes with yours probably being 170032.  They were produced in 1993 only.  I mention the five because there is nothing in the list of  variations or details about the guns in the info that shows or describes the safety type at all.  The photo in the book only shows the right side of the gun with the filler plug in the right side of the slide, no safety on that side of the frame.  The only slide mounted safeties I was aware of are the ones on the  945s made between 1998 and 2005.  Looks like they were all ambi and were 1911 style/shape.  I don't see anything else with frame safeties until the 2004 introduction of the 1911s.  I have tried to stay sort of familiar with S&W, and don't recall ever seeing anything except a photo of one like you describe being fired by a S&W team member, but I could not recall if it was a slide or frame mounted one as that was a long time ago.  The only production figures listed are a 3 1/2 inch compact version that was a run of 200.  Two versions were cataloged as "Export only" with no further description.         
Definitely worth the cost of a "letter."

Edited by sheepdog
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That thread probably explains the "Export Only" SKU numbers, frames that went to Britain and some here were nearly one-offs or cobbled together with altered or created parts, judging from the chop job to clearance for the safety.  Rare birds, great info!    Missed out big time when I never got a 945 and regret it.

EDITED TO ADD: Next post corrected my wrong impression that the photograph was from the old thread shown when it is actually the poster's gun as explained below. Now I wonder if it went over and came back or was one of the team guns here.   I'm guess that these guns inadvertently were the test bed for what became the 945s. 

Edited by sheepdog
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Somewhat off-topic but related, in 2005 I bought a SIG SP2009-9-BMS.  The 9 mm SP2009 was one of SIG's first polymer frame pistol (the SP2340 in 357 Sig and .40 S&W preceded it by a couple of years).   It was a double stack, hammer fired, DA/SA gun with SIG's standard grip mounted decocker.  Apparently it was made to offer a lower cost alternative to SIG's pricy aluminum frame guns like the P226.  

 

What made the "BMS" unusual was that it had ambidextrous slide mounted manual safety levers as well as the standard decocker.    You could carry it cocked and locked but the safety levers were in an awkward location and worked "backward" from common 1911 operation, i.e. up to fire. 

 

The story was these were made to fill a South American order that required a manual safety but the order was canceled before they could be delivered and SIG sold them on the retail US market.

 

Just another gun with an unexpected manual safety but not as rare as the S&W discussed in this thread.

Edited by SteelCityShooter
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There was a local shooter years ago who claimed he wasn’t rich because he worked for a living, bought both open and limited guns with the frame mounted safety in 356 TSW

way back then the rule for limited major was if 3 manufacturers made ammo that made major, then it could be scored major

well there were 2 and he was in the process of buying a production run from a 3rd ammo company when USPSA changed the rules to 40 cal minimum for limited major

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