Smith & Wesson (S&W) has been producing small, solid frame .32 revolvers on a near continuous basis for the best part of 108 years. The first was designed around the new I-Frame and called the .32 Hand Ejector Model of 1896. Along with this swing-out cylinder revolver came the .32 S&W Long cartridge. Produced by lengthening the .32 S&W case by 1/8”, the .32 Long allowed for a more powerful load. This model became issue guns for the Jersey City and Philadelphia police forces, along with numerous others over the succeeding years. As with all S&W handguns, the .32 Hand Ejector went through a series of evolutionary steps as new improvements were made and newer models introduced. The Post-WWII era saw the emergence of the J-Frame and the S&W “Regulation Police” or Model 31 was changed to this frame size in 1961. This model was the last in a long lineage of .32 wheel guns and in the early 1990’s it looked like the end was near. Enter the .32 H&R Magnum.
I purchased a S&W Model 432PD recently and finally made it out to the range to test fire this diminuitive little gun. For those of you who don't know the gun, the Model 432 is a small, Airweight alloy J-Frame hammerless Centennial revolver chambered for the .32 H&R Magnum round. Tipping the scales at a mere 15.7 ounces empty, the 432 seems to weigh next to nothing. Looking very much like it's bigger .38/.357 caliber brother, the Model 42/642 series, the smaller .32 H&R Magnum cartridge allows room for a 6th shot in the cylinder. With a 1 7/8" barrel the 432 this lightweight revolver makes a fine pocket gun.
Smith Wesson Model 432 PD Forum discussion about S&W 432 PD