Long a staple of police and security use, surplus stainless steel Smith & Wesson medium-sized duty revolvers still have a lot of life left.

The S&W K-frame was the standard police-issue "service revolver" for just about every law enforcement agency in the 1970s and 80s, and have continued to clock in for use in corrections and security roles to this day. Dating back to the early side-ejector designs of the 1900s, these six-shooters were dependable for both military and police work – which led to the model's early designation. Over 6 million K-frames have been produced. 


S&W Model 64
The quintessential K-frame is represented in the Model 64 and 65, stainless medium revolvers typically seen with 4-inch barrels, chambered in .38 Special and .357 Magnum, respectively. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
Smith Wesson 64
They were to go-to police "service revolver" across about 25 years. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)


Standardized with fixed sights, the steel-framed S&W Military & Police series of K-framed wheelguns evolved into the Model 10, which is possibly the most basic .38 Special revolver ever made, its stainless steel brother the Model 64, and the .357 Magnum caliber Models 13 and 65, with the latter being stainless. 

Guns.com recently came into a seriously deep lot (pallets, not boxes) of S&W stainless steel K-framed six-shooters that came to us by way of a police trade-in. 


Pallets of S&W Model 64 and 65 revolvers
That's a lot of wheelguns! 


We've got these trade-in guns in .38 Special in two different generations (64-5 and 64-8) as well as in .357 Magnum across five different variants (65-4, 65-5, 65-6, 65-7, and 65-8). 

All priced under $500. 

Looking at the variations: 

S&W 64-5 wood grips
The S&W Model 64 is the stainless version of the old .38 Special Model 10, at first made with a tapered barrel at introduction in 1970 but then later upgraded to a heavy barreled version. The 64-5, shown here with factory wooden grips, was first introduced in 1988. We have several in stock and there are slight variations in the conditions and grips – the shade of the wood or signs of use might be slightly different than the pictures shown.
S&W 64-5 rubber grips
We also have 64-5 .38 Special models with rubber grips. As with the 64-5 wood, there are slight variations in the conditions and rubber grips. The grips you receive could be S&W, Hogue or Pachmayr. Note the 64-5s are pre-Internal Key Lock models as well as being pre-MIM hammer/lock work. 
S&W 64-8
The 64-8, a model introduced in 2004, has a two-piece barrel design and the internal lock system. They come standard a variety of rubber grips. These are in .38 Special, as are all Model 64s. Note that the barrels are specifically marked "+P."
S&W 64 without stocks
Keep in mind that the grips on K-framed revolvers are easily swapped out at the user level by anyone with a screwdriver. Dozens of companies and hundreds of craft makers stock K-frame replacement grips in just about every material and type you can imagine. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
S&W 65-4
The S&W Model 65, first introduced in 1972, is the stainless version of the old Model 13 M&P "heavy barrel" revolver in .357 Magnum. Keep in mind that it can also shoot milder recoiling .38 Special as well. The 65-4 production had minor changes from previous generations and was introduced in 1988. It is a pre-Internal Key Lock model as well as having a pre-MIM hammer/lock work. There are slight variations in the conditions and rubber grips on these surplus guns. The grips you receive could be S&W, Hogue or Pachmayr.
S&W 65-5
The 65-5, like the 65-4, only had minor changes over previous models. These were made until 1996. The grips you receive on these could be S&W, Hogue or Pachmayr. Note they don't have the oft-derided safety hole on the side. 
S&W 64 with speedloader
Note that the rubber grips we have seen on these-- be they factory Smith or Hogue and Pachmayr aftermarket-- are of the "combat" type and include the left-side cut-out for use with a standard (HKS 10, Safariland J-K2) pattern speedloader. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
S&W 65-6
The S&W 65-6 series was introduced in 1997 and included an MIM hammer and a change to a floating firing pin, dropping the old-school hammer pin style. Note that the grips you receive on these could be S&W, Hogue or Pachmayr as, even though these were originally supplied with the Smith factory grips, they may have been changed out by a unit armorer or individual officer/deputy down before they made it to us. 
S&W 65-7
The 65-7s were only made briefly, between 2002 and 2005, and were essentially the 65-6 with the addition of the Internal Key Lock system. 
S&W 65-8
The 65-8 was a curious design for Smith, being introduced after the series was dropped from the company's catalog. Using a two-piece barrel design, it remained in production specifically for agencies and guard/car companies that wanted a no-frills stainless .357 six-shooter. 


These now-classic stainless K-frames are easy to maintain and keep operational, with tons of aftermarket upgrades and holster options out there. While .38 and .357 loads were scarce immediately after the Great Ammo Grab of 2020™ it is starting to come back on the market.


S&W 64 with mixed load on bullet board
Due to their weight and long sight radius, they are fun and accurate on the range, especially with target ammo, and make good training guns. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
S&W 64 with hollow points
When stoked with a decent self-defense load, these hard-wearing stainless K-frames can continue to serve for generations as a reliable home or personal protection tool. Further, speed loaders and strips are easy to learn how to use, have an achievable training curve, and are cheap. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)