Smith & Wesson’s NY-1 Revolvers


A lot of people collect firearms. Some people are military collectors that are looking for hard to find surplus guns. Others gravitate toward high-end custom models that have been hand built to their specific requirements. Some shooters like to collect law enforcement service guns.

The New York City Police Department (NYPD) is said to be the largest city police department in the United States. It has been on the front pages for heroism and villainy at various points in its history. It is understandable why many people would want to collect former NYPD service guns.

While there are probably thousands of service guns that can be found from the NYPD that are now in private hands, some of the best known are the NY-1 revolvers from Smith & Wesson.

In the late 1980s, Smith & Wesson made a number of Model 60 and Model 64 revolvers to meet the updated NYPD firearms requirements. These guns were sold through the NYPD to its officers, but were never owned by the city. They were personally owned guns that were for use on- and off-duty. The guns were marked NY-1, signifying that they were specially made for this program.


The M60 NY-1 was a 2″ round but gun that was in service for a very short period of time: from 1987 – late 1988. Some of the guns developed a problem and were pulled from duty use. Many were returned to Smith & Wesson (which were retooled and sold through commercial channels) while many were kept by the officers.

The M64 NY-1 had multiple variations, and were authorized for on-duty use from 1987 through 1993. I was fortunate enough to purchase one of these from a retired auto theft detective after he moved to my corner of the world. It is this gun that you see in the photos here. This version is not in pristine condition – it was carried in the waistband of an undercover cop for years. The left side shows more wear, but it does not hinder the gun’s functioning at all.

I’ve handled several examples of NY-1 guns, and all of them have been well made guns. My gun has a smooth double action trigger with a crisp single action pull that is very sweet. The K-frame gives the gun a little extra heft to absorb .38 Special +P loads, plus a larger cylinder to hold a full six rounds.


These guns can still be found for a fairly reasonable price. While the collectors might want them for display, they are great shooting guns. It would seem a shame that all of them would be locked away instead of making some joyful noise at the range every so often.

If you have an interest in these or other Smith & Wesson guns, I highly recommend buying the Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson. This extremely well-researched book is in its fourth edition and has a lot of great information about the guns (and other gear) S&W made throughout the years. There is even a special section of the NY-1 revolvers.

Richard Johnson

An advocate of gun proliferation zones, Richard is a long time shooter, former cop and internet entrepreneur. Among the many places he calls home is


  • Don Ward

    These are a must have item for any firearms enthusiast who is also a discerning fan of Johnny Depp’s “21 Jump Street.”




    *Awkward silence*

    • Raptor Fred

      I said jump, down on Jump Street. Your friends will be there when your back is to the wall. You’ll find you’ll need us cause there’s no one else to call.

    • Zebra Dun

      Johnny in his callow youth had yet to learn to “KEEP HIS BOOGER PICKER OFF HIS TRIGGER!” Nice haircut though.

  • ShooterPatBob

    I love these articles on older used guns. My own collection includes 40-20 year old S&W revolvers and generation 2 and 3 semi autos. Keep up the good work!

  • Ken

    What was the “problem” that caused some of them to be pulled from service?

    • ShooterPatBob

      Yes, I’m wondering about that as well.

    • Anonymoose

      Light strikes, most likely. S&W recommends against simply bobbing the hammers on the J-frame, whereas you can bob, bob away on the bigger guns.

  • Stephen Kelly

    Only problem was with the Model 60 NY-1. Not the K-Frames.

  • warden45

    How do you get a crisp single action trigger pull on the bobbed hammer, DAO M64?

    • Zebra Dun

      Smith and Wesson Pixie dust of course.

  • richard kluesek

    Lots of the cops in those days were disenchanted with revolvers, bulky, low capacity and slow to reload, as compared to the coveted semiautos packed by drug dealers, gang bangers, and better equipped law abiding private citizens. So now these are fascinating artifacts to plinkers and collectors.

  • Zebra Dun

    That is a nice revolver! Lucky dog.