Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 50

Thread: Ruger New Vaquero in 45 Colt

  1. #1
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    10-20-04
    Location
    the Evergreen State
    Posts
    1,076

    Ruger New Vaquero in 45 Colt

    I'm blessed to have choices on what I shoot and the choice I'm making most of the time is to shoot my Ruger New Vaquero in 45 Colt. Not only does it just feel right packing around in the woods but it is plenty capable of anything I need a handgun to do.



    By casting my own bullets and reloading I can feed it for less than $0.10/ round at the prices I paid for the components. Once they run out I'm not sure what it will cost at today's prices and availability...

    I've shot 147 grain Round Balls, 200, 255, 280 and 300 grain bullets out of it. It won't handle "Ruger Only" loads like the Blackhawk so it isn't as versatile but a 255 grain bullet traveling between 850-1,000 fps will accomplish 99% of what I'd need a handgun cartridge to do.

    The "Load" I've settled on is a 255 grain Lee RNFP pushed by SR4756 to 925fps average. It has proven to be accurate and easy to shoot.



    At 25 yards it shoots point of aim. The group measures 1-3/4" and was shot offhand (two hands). Below the target is a three shot 147 grain Round Ball over Red Dot load. It travels 730 fps and prints about 8" below point of aim.

    At 25 feet the 255 gr load shoots POA too. The RB load again prints lower.


    5 shots 255 grain load centered. Two shots below are the Round Ball load.

    Recently I've started shooting it at 100 yards. The delay between the muzzle blast and the thud/dirtsplash is adds to the grin factor My point of aim is about 3" above the paper. I line up the sights and then push the front sight post over the target. the target is mostly obscured so precision is reduced but I was able to shoot a 9 shot 8" group (loose sense of the word) Offhand (two handed) at 100 yards. One of the shots missed the paper, I suspect I touched it off my alignment was too low and it sailed below the target.


    100 yard target

    Ruger has captured the svelte good looks of the Colt and improved the durability making a near perfect "lead dispenser" in 45 Colt. Now I need one for my other hand.

  2. #2
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-30-02
    Location
    Deep in the Ozarks
    Posts
    11,339
    Not bad. Do you know if they offer a Bisley version?

  3. #3
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    05-31-07
    Location
    SW Ohio
    Posts
    980
    Good for you!

    Those target look just fine!! Besides, having fun is the point, isn't it?!
    If the sun's up, you still have a pulse and background radiation levels are nominal -- everything else is gravy! ChAir Force Specialty Code 1825K // My oath to "defend the Constitution against ALL Enemies, Foreign and Domestic" has no DOS. . . .

  4. #4
    Moderator  
    Join Date
    05-22-03
    Location
    Lexington,North Carolina...or thereabouts
    Posts
    12,263
    Having explored the New Vaquero platform for nearly a year with a pair of the critters...my experience mirrors Mo's.

    I was never a real fan of the .45 Colt cartridge until the New Vaqueros came along.

    They've got just enough heft without being too massive to carry easily. The .45 Colt cartridge, handloaded to the top end of standard velocities...a 250 grain cast bullet at 900 fps or so...have ample power to handle all but the hairiest of encounters with large bears. They're accurate, and they point like the finger of God..and they carry a strength and durability edge on the Colt 1873's and the true clones.

    No...They can't be used with the published "Ruger Only" data...but they'll stand up well to a steady diet of 250 at 900+ fps without a problem. A 5.5-inch barrel will probably break a thousand with the same handload. Any more than that, and the gun would border on unpleasant to shoot.

    Vern...Yes. In January of this year, Ruger announced the New Vaquero Bisley model, complete with Pimp My Gun simulated ivory stocks. The calibers are the same as the New Vaquero. .45 Colt and .357 Magnum.
    Speak kindly to me, beloved master. Revel in my unconditional love, and give me every minute that you can spare, for my time with you is short.
    --Your faithful dog

    http://www.collierescue.net/available/index.html


    To see my real work:

    http://www.pets-r-great.org:80/magaz...ue1/cover.html

  5. #5
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    Kewl. I settled for 357 in my NewVaq with no regrets; I have more raw power on tap, cheaper ammo and very good JHP designs available.

    The downside is that the 45LC in this size platform can deliver serious stopping power without going supersonic. To match the 45LC's effectiveness in 357, you have to go seriously supersonic. That means big noise and a sharper "whack" of recoil rather than a "big push".

    But on my budget, I'm better off with the 357.

    Mine is..."no longer stock". Bigtime

    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  6. #6
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Jim, that is one seriously fine looking revolver.
    What are those sights,
    especially the rear one?
    (Mikey likes it.)

    Mo, another fine report.

    If anyone is going to get me into handloading, it's you.

    And your knowledge of round balls in the .45 and other calibers (including .30-30)
    inspires creativity to explore the flexibility built into these tools.

    Oh, crap. Now see what you guys have done?

    Got me interested in another handgun.

    And it's a Ruger, no less
    (says the Smith guy).

    And, it's available in .357 mag to match my 3" 65.

    Dang.

    Dang, dang, dang.

    No, no, no. Must resist.

    Must ... re ... sist ...
    must ... not ... look ...
    _________

    <Minutes later>

    OK, couldn't resist a search.
    The Ruger pages on SA revolvers is down at the moment,
    but I found this review on Gunblast.

    Must ... resist ...
    ______________

    {added by edit after reading the Gunblast review}.

    OK, I'm hooked. No sense fighting this. I'm interested.

    No commitments; I'm just exploring the idea.

    No, really, just exploring the idea.
    It's highly unlikely I'll actually buy one.

    (Dang.)

    Next question: if I was going to buy one,
    should it be .357 mag or .45 Colt?

    I hear the ammo cost issue.
    What else to consider, especially given that
    I've got the 65 in .357 and the 642 in .38 spl?

    How does the .45 C recoil compare to .357 mag in the new Vaquero?

    Guess I better do some reading on SA. Never shot one before.
    Last edited by Nematocyst; May 31st, 2009 at 05:11 AM. Reason: Left off a question mark; but there's no question that this revolver has my attention
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  7. #7
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Here's another review.

    Oh, man; you people have done a terrible thing
    getting me interested in this revolver.

    You should all be ashamed of yourselves.
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  8. #8
    Moderator  
    Join Date
    05-22-03
    Location
    Lexington,North Carolina...or thereabouts
    Posts
    12,263
    Jim...It so happens that a .357 is on my short list of "must have" items...just under food and above clothing.



    Going by feel and heft, the .357 model seems to weigh empty about the same as the .45 does loaded. A small thing, but a consideration. When you've got an old, tired back like mine, every ounce counts on a nature hike. So, I'll have to stick to the .45 for carry, and use the .357 for the bulk of my practice.
    Speak kindly to me, beloved master. Revel in my unconditional love, and give me every minute that you can spare, for my time with you is short.
    --Your faithful dog

    http://www.collierescue.net/available/index.html


    To see my real work:

    http://www.pets-r-great.org:80/magaz...ue1/cover.html

  9. #9
    Moderator  
    Join Date
    05-22-03
    Location
    Lexington,North Carolina...or thereabouts
    Posts
    12,263

    Bisley Vaquero

    Vern...There's a new Bisley vaquero pictured at the top.

    http://www.ruger-firearms.com/Firearms/FA-Type-RE.html

    Next question: if I was going to buy one,
    should it be .357 mag or .45 Colt?

    Why not one of each?
    Speak kindly to me, beloved master. Revel in my unconditional love, and give me every minute that you can spare, for my time with you is short.
    --Your faithful dog

    http://www.collierescue.net/available/index.html


    To see my real work:

    http://www.pets-r-great.org:80/magaz...ue1/cover.html

  10. #10
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    10-20-04
    Location
    the Evergreen State
    Posts
    1,076
    Nem wrote: "How does the .45 C recoil compare to .357 mag in the new Vaquero?"

    If you were shooting factory 45 colt and factory 357 I would say similar. I wouldn't describe either as having much recoil but I'm probably not the right guy to ask - I've put a number of rounds down range in 500 S&W and 444 marlin in handguns so my perspective on recoil is skewed.

    I think the 357 is a very practical cartridge. It is especially true if you don't reload your own ammo. Like the 30-30 the economics of the 357/38cartridge make a lot of sense - free brass, less powder, many bullet choices.... There a MANY strong guns that can shoot it AND there is lots of published data across the wide spectrum of loading for it.

    The 357 cartridge is an overachiever considering how light and packable it is. A box of 50 45 Colt cartridges is 3 or more pounds and the boxes I have are nearly twice as big as the boxes I have for the 357 in the same quantity.

    My choice of 45 Colt is more sentimental and tactile than reasoned. I started with 38/357s, fell for 44 magnum and then happened into 45 Colt in both revolvers and leverguns. There is something about those chubby cartridges that just feels right - emotionally and physically.


    From an economic standpoint the 45 colt is probably the least practical. I've had maybe 50 pieces of 45 Colt brass given to me compared to thousands I've turned down in 38/357. Even 44 Mag brass is easier and less expensive to come by. The upside is that 45 brass lasts a LONG time. I have over 15 reloadings on some. I rarely have to retire any brass - though I did have a batch of Winchester brass that the primer pockets were becoming problematic. I've yet to wear-out any Starline brass.

    To shoot 45 colt you need to reload. To shoot 45 Colt a lot you need to cast. I do both and enjoy it. If I get the lead for free and the primers for less than $0.03 each I can send a 255 grain bullet down range for around six cents. $3 for a box (50) ammo is less expensive than a lot of the non-bulk rimfire ammo - and WAY more fun to shoot

    If you do reload the 45 Colt is an amazingly versatile cartridge - that is especially true in a rifle. My Marlin 1894CB shoots the Round balls close enough to point of aim that I could use them for small game. It will also send a 320 grain bullet down range at 1500 fps well short of Maximum Ruger Only pressures - that is faster than factory 45-70 commercial ammo. In the handgun the standard 255 grain bullet going 850-1000 fps will do pretty much anything - A grouse will not explode from a body hit like it does with faster skinnier bullets, though it does make a mess... And given the right circumstances (Bow range, broadside and a good quality hunting bullet) I would shoot an Elk sized critter with confidence it would have more than adequate penetration and create a sufficient wound channel for an ethical harvest. I may not be recalling this correctly but in Elmer Keith's book didn't he describe a friend of his killing TWO Grizzlies with a 45 Colt revolver?

    To be honest, it would be hard to go wrong with either 357 or 45 colt in a SA revolver or Levergun. Having both a fella could cover a lot of bases and not overly disadvantaged in many others. Both are on my keeper list.

  11. #11
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    That sight setup is still a work in progress. I'm going to be changing the front soon...the fiber optic core is already gone, turns out to be a distraction from the real goal: the ability to focus on the TARGET instead of the front sight.

    The gunsmith that came up with this concept is a gent by the name of Tim Sheehan at Goshen Enterprises:

    http://www.goshen-hexsite.com/index2.htm

    He has user-installable "Hexsite" kits for Glocks, with the XD coming soon, and he does various 1911 or other custom setups in-house. Also rifle and shotgun custom configurations. But nothing for a New Vaquero until I rednecked this thing I call a "Goshdarn Hacksite" out of a piece of 5/16ths long-neck socket, some black paint, a brass tube and a screw tapped into the topstrap.

    Tim was very cool about what I'd done and had no problems with it so long as it's personal use only . He invited me up to his shop and we compared my setup to his real ones. His are much more compact and his front is better, but I'm clearly barking up the same tree.

    The "tree" is the ability to focus on the target as you shoot. Even with the front and rear blurry, the hex rear allows you to still line everything up correctly. It is *shockingly* fast on target, the best sight setup I've ever shot by miles. You can also see what the target is doing; if a guy draws a cellphone, you can *tell* it's not worth shooting him over. Situations like that are more common for cops than for regular CCWers but it can still be a factor. In my view, this concept is more "moral" than the "front sight focus" dogma found in the "modern technique" but really carried over from bullseye target shooting.

    There are two other ways to get a front-sight-focus system:

    1) "Use the whole top of the gun as a crude sight". This works better with autos and it takes a lot of practice...still, a lot of the top IPSC/IDPA guys running iron-sight classes talk about this.

    2) Run a glass sight with a red dot. That leads to batteries, fogging up and other such annoyances. And in my experience, at high speed the red dot in the middle gets old...which is why I ditched the fiber optic core.

    Tim's sight is the only setup giving you iron-sight reliability and an accurate target focus that feels natural from the first minute you try it.

    Oh yeah: this gun is my daily-carry CCW in Tucson, AZ .
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  12. #12
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    As to recoil: the absolute nastiest 357s are made by Doubletap, Buffalo Bore and Grizzly, three small ammo houses that whip up the most "gonzo" stuff.

    The wildest deliver about 800ft/lbs energy. The 45LC tops out at around 550ft/lbs energy in this size platform. So the 357 has at least that edge.

    It's also a "sharper" recoil snap driven by higher peak pressures over a shorter period of time than the 45LC. The 45 will feel "mellower" for the same energy level, by a bit.

    The good news is, shooting 357s with about 500-600ft/lbs energy is completely controllable one-handed in the NewVaq. So 45s at the same level will be at least as pleasant. Once you hit the 800 ballpark, the sharp checkering on the grip panels starts to hurt, which is why my gun's panels are mostly polished of checkering. I've also rounded the bottoms of my grip panels for the "extreme pinkie under" hold I do where the pinkie is curled under the bottom of the grip and then up the other side some. I have very flexible hands . To bring the gun back down out of recoil I curl my pinkie...this is also a main indexing point, a reference used to put the gun in the same place in the hand for each shot.

    With very hot 357s and a two-handed Weaver-style hold, I can shoot one round per second very controlled. Not "peak accuracy" of course but certainly "minute of mugger"...and I can switch targets in that one second as well with the "hacksite".
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  13. #13
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Thanks for the input, all. Good points.

    Bet I'll stick with the .357 mag since I've already got it, and when I start reloading, it's one less thing to worry about.

    Jim, I'm still trying to visualize that "pinkie curl". I read about it in another of your posts in another thread, but just can't get it yet. No biggie.

    I have another question, too. How does Vaquero compare with Blackhawk? Especially, do newer Blackhawks have the same sleekness that the new Vaquero does? That's important to me because I have small hands. Bigger handguns just don't work as well for me.

    {Added by edit: just found Jim's post over here that answers that question.}

    Yet, I'd want to use a longer barreled revolver in part for hunting. Not sure about those fixed sites.

    Also, the Ruger pages on SA revolvers has been down during the weekend. Most of the rest of it works, but not those pages.
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  14. #14
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    Nematocyst: that answer is dated . There's now TWO mid-frame adjustable-sight Blackhawks:

    * The 50th 357 is blue, 4.68" barrel, "flattop" frame, exactly the same grip setup as the New Vaquero. A great choice, and somehow CDNN got ahold of a big pile and are blowing 'em out the door at $400 a pop!!! Huge, huge deal.

    http://www.cdnninvestments.com/ - call 'em.

    * Ruger just started shipping a 2,000-strong run of that gun in 44Special, Ruger's first 44spl *ever*. Barrels are either 4.68" or 5.5". If you want big-bore this is the way to go. Otherwise the 50th 357 will be much easier to find and likely at least $200 cheaper, and the same quality.

    The reality is, you CAN hunt with a 357Mag and a 4.68" barrel. Ruger barrels in general tend to "shoot fast", up to 100fps or more over, say a Taurus or vintage S&W. (Recent S&Ws have mostly caught up.) Spend the money on premium ammo, and it's doable. I'm strongly considering using my gun on California wild boar (very, VERY few hit 300lbs) with Buffalo Boar's 180gr hardcast slug. Buffbore's 158gr JHP loaded hell-bent-for-leather would make a very good deer slug, up to maybe 200lbs.

    I wouldn't call this "marginal" but it's borderline...but then again, you're now hunting with a gun and caliber that are fully "streetable" for CCW .

    (You can also go custom: the barrel threads from the mid-frames are the same as the large frames, so a take-off 7.5" 357 Blackhawk barrel could be had for cheap, turned a bit smaller in a lathe and installed along with a custom front sight on a 50th 357. THAT would make a superb hunting gun.)
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  15. #15
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    09-15-07
    Location
    SE Minnesota
    Posts
    3,260
    When my kid gets out of college (so I have money again) I'm gonna check with Bowen about what it would cost to fit a .45 Colt NewVaq with a 5-shot cylinder with tight chambers. Something that could handle the same 25000 psi loads as my Ruger Bisley, but handier. (the Bisley can probably handle more than that, but I don't push it.) It should still be cheaper than a Freedom Arms because it just needs a new cylinder, not a rebarrel. And unlike the FA, I could carry it loaded 5-up instead of just 4 because of the transfer bar.
    "Nobody wins in a Dairy Challenge" —Kenny Rogers

  16. #16
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Thanks for that, Jim.

    * The 50th 357 is blue, 4.68" barrel, "flattop" frame, exactly the same grip setup as the New Vaquero. A great choice, and somehow CDNN got ahold of a big pile and are blowing 'em out the door at $400 a pop!!! Huge, huge deal.
    If I had that money now, I would.

    But I don't. This is not going to happen for a while, unfortunately. The economic crunch has hit me hard. Don't even have June fully covered yet, let alone July.

    And, we're trying to scrub up funds to fly my sweetie out here in July. She's gotta come first.
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  17. #17
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    I forgot to mention my gun's OTHER mods:

    * A SuperBlackhawk hammer has lowered the thumb reach. $35 from Brownell's, dropped it right in myself. I do ALL cocking with the strong-side thumb, shooting one-handed or Weaver (two hands).

    * I free-spun it myself by removing the "reverse stopper plunger" - with the loading gate open, cylinder spins both ways. This is dead easy: unload the gun, cock it, and with a small hex key remove the plunger and spring located under a hex screw just below the transfer bar, pointing forward towards the cylinder.

    * Grip panels are altered a little - most of the lower checkering is smoothed.

    * Spring kit .

    Nematocyst: as I said, I have very flexible hands. My version of the "pinkie under" hold has my pinkie jutting down at around a 45deg. angle from my other fingers when held straight(!) and then that's curled under the grip frame and up the other side.

    For the longest time I couldn't understand why flat-bottom grips were so common in the aftermarket, and in use even by some people who claimed to do "pinkie under" holds. Then I found out most people can't do what I do. What they do is, they curl their pinkie underneath the grip frame like it was a rattlesnake or something, still parallel to the rest of their fingers.

    When I say my fingers are flexible, I'm not kidding. I once invented a "gestural pun" based on the fact that I'm a bit of a Trekkie . OK, you know the "Vulcan salute", palm out, fingers split in a "V"? "Live long and prosper"? Yeah, turn that around, leave the "V" in the middle two fingers alone, curl your pinkie and trigger finger, and it's "die young and poor" - the "Vulcan flipoff" .

    Turns out way less than 5% of the population can do the "Vulcan bird", esp. with both pinkie and trigger fingers fully curled up.
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  18. #18
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    If I had that money now, I would.
    I hear that. The good news is, prices on SAs of all sorts are NOT being affected by the "Obama Scare"[tm]. People are assuming cowboy guns are the least likely to get affected by bans, so they're putting all their money into tacticool stuff. SA prices are if anything a bit soft and will likely stay that way for a bit.
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

  19. #19
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    I understand the pinkie curl now, Jim.

    Yeah, that's pretty amazing.

    Good to hear that the SA's aren't tacticool.
    Better for those of us that care.
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  20. #20
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    10-20-04
    Location
    the Evergreen State
    Posts
    1,076
    I've grown to appreciate the fat Blackhawk grips whenever I decide to shoot the hot stuff.

    I did shoot the NEW Vaquero with some moderate (Low End Ruger ONLY loads ~<20,000psi according to quickload) 300 grain bullet pushed to right about 1,000 fps. It was quite manageable but the smaller RNV grip is less comfortable than the Blackhawk (I haven't handled the newer version with synthetic stocks for comparison though).

    The Blackhawk is a superior hunting single action. The adjustable sights allow you to work up whatever load you need to handle the job and it is robust enough to handle the pressures generated by the hotter loads.

    The RNV is closer to the original Colt SAA which John Taffin describes as "one of the greatest six guns of all times."

    The Colt SAA certainly is the standard by which all others are measured and in terms of elegance I believe has yet to be matched. I am not aware of any firearm that combines the beauty, simplicity, ergonomics, function and cartridge in a package as neatly. It seems divine or at least divinely inspired.

    There are modern materials and designs that are superior in some respects but few can match the soul of the classics.

  21. #21
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    10-20-04
    Location
    the Evergreen State
    Posts
    1,076

    Dern near perfect


    A pair of Ruger New Vaqueros


    My regular hiking companion

  22. #22
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Well, I've got the fever.

    RNV or RB, that is.

    I'll confess that right now, I'm leaning towards Blackhawk
    (based entirely on reading so far; have never even seen either,
    let alone handled them, let alone shot them).

    My only concern is grip size. I'll not know until I handle one of each.

    I'm very curious how both feel compared to, say,
    a mod 65 or 686, both of which fit me very well.

    There's also another impending choice for me:
    4-5/8" or 6-1/2" if BH or 4-5/8" v 5-1/2" if NV?

    I'm listening to advice. Remember: not CCW - 65/642 for that -
    but a camp/hike companion that can be pressed into a hunting niche at close range.

    It was quite manageable but the smaller RNV grip is less comfortable than the Blackhawk
    (I haven't handled the newer version with synthetic stocks for comparison though).
    The Blackhawk is a superior hunting single action.
    That sums up what I'm reading and seeing in images.

    Funny, I've never been attracted to SA revolvers before now.
    Didn't think I'd ever even want to own one.
    (Still not sure, but they've got my attention.)

    There seemed something ... odd about the grip location,
    the way their angle relative to the frame,
    that skinny point where they join the frame ...
    For some reason, it didn't appeal to me aesthetically.

    And if you have to load one at a time, and there's no DA, then, what's the point, I thought.
    Just a sentimental thing, a collectors item for CAS.

    It was Jim's tricked out Vaq above that did it. Something just clicked.

    Now, the more I read, the more I get hooked.

    I think I'm beginning to "get it" about SA.

    I'm beginning to ... intuit a niche for one in my very utilitarian, minimalist tool kit.

    But I hope to hear more from you all about what it is, exactly,
    that makes these such a special revolver,
    including how people use them - hunting, SD, target ...

    Thanks for opening my mind (once again).

    Nem
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  23. #23
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-30-02
    Location
    Deep in the Ozarks
    Posts
    11,339
    If possible, try to shoot the Blackhawk before buying, or at least heft it. Many people find the Bisley model is better at moderating recoil than the standard Blackhawk.

  24. #24
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    08-05-05
    Location
    Quasi-nomadic
    Posts
    9,704
    Thanks, Vern. Will do. Much prefer to shoot it first.

    Can you tell me more about why the Bisley is better recoil mod?

    I'm guessing weight ...

    PS: the Ruger SA pages are finally working again.
    I couldn't get to them all weekend, which was
    a drag because I wanted to check them out.
    _________

    Levers, wheels, blades & sticks

  25. #25
    Senior Member  
    Join Date
    12-24-02
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    9,688
    Regarding the Bisley:

    Look VERY carefully at the standard NV:



    ...and compare to the exact same gun in Ruger's rendition of the Bisley:



    The biggest practical difference isn't obvious at first glance. Look at the UPPER area where the grip frame meets the "primary frame" (also known as the "cylinder frame"). As you do, remember that both primary frames are 100% identical.

    See it yet?

    The Bisley is raising your grip up higher in comparison to the barrel. That reduces "recoil flip" and is a key reason the Ruger Bisley is reknown for recoil control. (Early reports are that the Ruger LCR borrows this trick and raises the grip up higher than in other snubby 5-shooters from Taurus and S&W.)

    The other thing is that the Ruger Bisley is very long, allowing all fingers to get max control - but eliminating "pinkie under" holds.

    Ruger's "Bisley" has an interesting family tree. Colt made a "Bisley" grip frame (and altered hammer/trigger setup) in the late 19th century as a competition model, but it wasn't very widely recieved:



    At a minimum, it takes some getting used to!

    And then in the early 20th century, some custom gunsmiths realized that since the Colt grip frames are in two pieces (back and front meet with a screw in the bottom), they could merge the front (with triggerguard) from a regular SAA (similar to NewVaq) and then bend a Bisley backstrap to meet it. This culminated in a legendary custom wheelgun known as the "#5", to this day considered by many the penultimate Colt SAA-based custom gun - here's a link to a modern reproduction:

    http://www.bowenclassicarms.com/NEW/Hphphp0a.htm

    Ruger seems to have started with the #5, not the original Bisley, and then lengthened it for big hands. If you take a Ruger Bisley and custom chop it shorter, you get something very much like a #5, or Ron Powers is now selling complete #5 grip kits:

    http://powercustom.com/store/index.p...roducts_id=787

    For the kinds of power levels the NV is good for (up to 800ft/lbs in 357, 550ish in 45LC) the #5 is possibly "the ultimate" as a balance between recoil control (with the high hand position) yet retains the impossible-to-describe "pointability" feel of the SAA/NewVaq plowhandle grip.

    Once you get into stout 44Mag territory or hotter, Ruger's variant of the Bisley starts to dominate.

    What I want to do is get a used (or cheap as possible) Ruger Bisley, chop it shorter myself, get the ergonomics exactly where I want them for my hands, and then have it welded up that way professionally. This would get me something very much like what Elmer Keith had in the #5, but set up for my hands instead of his.

    For one thing, while having the bottom of the grip panel parallel to the barrel is the more common layout, it's by no means the only option...with the pinkie-under holds I do, having it sliced "upwards" (pointing more or less to the muzzle) might work better.
    Jim March
    TFL Alumnus
    Equal Rights for CCW Home Page
    http://www.equalccw.com
    Airplane Pictures

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •