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At the risk of sounding stupid, can anyone inform me on how to tell a J frame from a K frame. It's probably obvious but I am missing it. I like to know what i am talking about when questioned. Thanks:
 

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A "J" frame is normally a 5 shot 38 or 357 Magnum whereas a "K" frame is usually a 6 shot 38 or 357 Magnum. The "J", "K", "L" and "N" frames are S&W references.
 

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J is considered the "small" frame, while the K frame is "medium". The models 19 & 66, and maybe others, had trouble holding up to regular use of .357 Magnum loads so the L frame was developed. It's a little beefier than the K frame but the grip is the same, that's why you'll see grips advertised for the K/L frame - they'll fit both.
 

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Sometimes I get these impulsive urges, must be the desert sun. :dancingbananna:

J frame .357mag;


K frame M64 .38 Special with factory cherry wood grips;


L frame scandium 5 shot M396 NG .44 Special bottom;
N frame scandium 8 shot M327 TRR8 .357mag top;


The curve ball here is that the J frame is from Colt, Trooper MkIII and the other models are from S&W.

Bob :)
 

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Both Colt & Smith & Wesson used "J" & "I" to designate frame sizes.
S & W used "I" on early small framed revolvers & changed to a "J" designation.
Colt used "I" & "J" for medium framed revolvers.
 
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