S&W 64-8 Review: Classy, Stainless Police Wheelgun Action


LEO S&W Model 10 and Model 64 Revolvers
There were some design changes, but you can see the family link between the Model 10, left, and the Model 64. (Photo: Paul Peterson/

The Model 64 rolled onto the scene in the 1970s. That puts the Model 64, and specifically this Model 64-8 launched in 1988, right at the heart of the revolver vs. semi-auto battle playing out across America’s police departments.

The 64s managed to remain in production until late 2021, when the model was finally consigned to the S&W Archive. All in all, that’s not a bad run for a wheel gun launched just before Gaston Glock finished tinkering with his fancy new polymer-framed striker-fired pistols. 

Functionally, the primary advantage of the stainless-steel Model 64s in 1970 over the Model 10 – which is still in product – was, well, obviously that groovy new stainless appeal. It was only the company’s second shot at an all-stainless-steel design – with the first being the Model 60 – and it provided a familiar but more weather-resistant option.

Smith & Wesson Model 10 and Model 64 Revolvers
You can also note that this older Model 10-10, left, had the firing pin directly on the hammer, while the 64-8 housed it inside the gun. You can also see the difference in life wear on the gun thanks to the stainless steel on the 64. (Photo: Paul Peterson/

While I personally fancy the look of the blued Model 10, I can also see the appeal of a service revolver that’s more resistant to that maddening challenge of corrosion during a long service life in a humid environment. As for this specific specimen, recently managed to pick up quite a few 64-8s through our Police Trade-In Program, though most have since vanished to new owners. 

S&W 64-8 Review: Classy, Stainless Police Wheelgun Action

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *