The Wyatt Deep Cover S&W 637

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Smith & Wesson has a rich history of producing beloved revolvers. Their semi-custom guns from the Performance Center are highly sought after, and many companies use S&W revolvers as their base. S&W also collaborates with select shops to create unique semi-custom designs, such as the new UC series. However, if we delve into the past, we discover the Wyatt Deep Cover S&W J-Frame revolvers, a decade-old gem with its own distinct features.

I only recently discovered these guns when I attended a local auction, and one hit the block. While I wasn’t personally interested in the gun, I wrote the name down out of curiosity. I like somewhat obscure limited lines of guns and would forget it by the end of the day. I found a fascinating story in researching the Wyatt Deep Cover line of S&W J-frames.

What’s a Wyatt Deep Cover 637

The Wyatt Deep Cover J-Frames were semi-custom guns produced with a partnership between Richard Wyatt and S&W. Richard Wyatt told S&W he could take one of their J-frames and modify it in under half an hour to create a super smooth and slick double action trigger. S&W invited him to their business to do just that, and sure enough, he could. In less than half an hour, he conducted a trigger job on an S&W 637 that resulted in a trigger reportedly better than the Performance Center Triggers. It reduced the pull weight from 15 pounds to 11 pounds.

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S&W purchased Mr. Wyatt’s idea and created a line of Wyatt Deep Cover Revolvers. These guns were quite a hit. They offered a silky double-action trigger without costing much more than a standard 637. Manufacturing the gun only added a half hour, so it was a win for both S&W and the customer.

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Outside of the trigger work, the guns also wore Desantis Clip Grips. These are hard plastic grips with a clip built in to allow you to carry the gun in your waistband sans holster. It’s not my method of carry, but with a trigger guard device it could be perfectly safe. This line of Wyatt Deep Cover guns seemed to be quite small, and I doubt many folks outside of S&W collectors have ever heard of them. I’m curious if S&W still uses the technique Wyatt taught them in any of its guns.

Wyatt, Gunsmoke, and the Discovery Channel

One of the most striking features of the gun on the auction block was the Gunsmoke logo emblazoned across the barrel. Gunsmoke, a name synonymous with the classic Western television show, was also the name of a gun store owned by Richard Wyatt. While his name may not ring a bell, Richard Wyatt and his family were no strangers to the limelight. They had a show on the Discovery Channel called American Guns, which I remember watching during its run.

I probably watched more than a couple of episodes during its run, and it was a contemporary of Sons of Guns. I can’t recall much about the show, but after doing a little research, I can easily see why neither series lasted long. Will Hayden and Richard Wyatt were both convicted of felonies, albeit Rich’s was way less heinous than Will’s.

(Richard Wyatt)

Richard Wyatt lost his Federal Firearms License in 2012 for numerous infractions. It seems like he was making deals and sales outside of his shop or a regularly recognized gun show. From what I understand, FFL holders can only conduct business at their shop or at an established gun show.

That was right in the middle of the American Guns show run. Rich couldn’t sell guns anymore, but, not wanting to lose his show, he pulled a sneaky. Folks would come into his gun store and browse but were directed to another FFL holder to complete their purchase. Rich wasn’t a fan of paying taxes.

It turns out that when you run a show about selling guns, you should probably have an FFL. If you’re going to break federal firearm laws, you should probably pay your taxes. I live by the advice of only breaking one law at a time.

The Fate of the Wyatt Deep Cover Specials

These guns still pop up here and there. Prices vary, and they aren’t considered highly collectible but are admittedly rare. You’ll probably spend more than a J-Frame, but not much more. The Wyatt Deep Cover guns are neat little pieces of history. Understandably, S&W didn’t seem to want to keep them around after Wyatt was sentenced to six years in prison.

Travis Pike
Travis Pike is a former Marine Machine gunner who served with 2nd Bn 2nd Marines for 5 years. He deployed in 2009 to Afghanistan and again in 2011 with the 22nd MEU(SOC) during a record setting 11 months at sea. He’s trained with the Romanian Army, the Spanish Marines, the Emirate Marines and the Afghan National Army. He serves as an NRA certified pistol instructor and teaches concealed carry classes.