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Discussion Starter #1
Here and elsewhere
A short while ago I started a primer thread, Primers, Flogging The Dead Equine I received good information. I asked the similar question elsewhere, and got some replies about the strength of various Rugers and I wondered about my wording. So, since we're a Ruger forum, what better place to ask? Almost verbatim from another post:

I'm going to try to use precise language, because I've become confused. A short time ago I started a primer thread. I don't consider myself a novice loader, but clearly not expert.

In that thread I referenced my new manufacture Blackhawk 45 Colt. Emphasis on new manufacture. I described it as a NM Blackhawk, and intended that as New Model. The thread answered my primer question, and "evolved" into the relative strength of NM, OM, grip frame size and "Ruger-only" loads. [Let me also emphasize my goal is not to test my Blackhawk's outer limits]. I THINK I understood some responses that a NM (i.e. "New Model") is not capable of handling Ruger-only loads. e.g.:
>No, not quite. The NM Blackhawk is built on the smaller (newer) frame, not the old Blackhawk/Vaquero frame. I get mixed up on the models now and then... someone correct me if I'm wrong...<< and
>You are correct. The old large frame model was made for the 44 MAG and modified to 45 Colt. I have a pair I use for CAS.Those are built like a proverbial tank. The newer ones are lighter and look more like an original colt proportionally to me. The thinner backstrap is not something I will pay for.<< and
>I have two of the new model , lighter weight blackhawks. You are quite right as far as I'm concerned.<<
My confusion is whether referring to a NM/New Model is the same as referring to a new manufacture and frame size (leaving alone cylinder size and wall thickness for the moment). After reading many of the replies, I searched and got a lot of information about gun damage with long term use of Ruger-only loads. Again, I am not thinking a constant diet of near maximum pressure ammunition.

Then I arrived at Writings | linebaughsixguns. Linebaugh is pretty well respected as a big bore limit pusher and knowledgeable. I got the understanding that a NM (new manufacture?) is easily within the realm of Ruger-only loads, gun wear notwithstanding.

This was a verbose thread starter. Is there a short version answer to the questions:
1. Does NM=New Model=new manufacture?
2. Is a new manufacture/NM safe with Ruger-only or close (NOT over) loads for casual use?
-jb, generating new questions from every answer

https://hamiltonrifle.com/highroadforum
 

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Not that difficult.
Ruger Old Model (OM 3 screw) Pre-1973
Ruger New Model (NM 2 pin, transfer bar) 1973 forward.

Therefore all the Vaqueros are New Models. There was never an Old Model Vaquero. There is the original Vaquero (1993-2004) and the New Vaquero (2004-Present). The original is on the same frame as the NM BH/SBH referred to as the Large Frame. The New Vaquero is on the medium frame (not for Ruger Only Loads).

Now what 'may' be confusing is there are those that refer to the New Vaquero as a New Model. Of course what they mean is it is a New Vaquero. They refer to the original Vaquero as the Old Model.... We kind of let it slide as there is a whole bunch of people who aren't UP on Ruger talk and don't really care to be. So it goes.

One way to tell if you have a New Vaquero is it will have a 3 digit start to the serial number xxx-yyyyy. The original Vaquero will be xx-yyyyy. Of course easy to see the difference side by side.

Here is a couple of references that go more in depth:

Gunblast New Vaquero part 1
Gunblast New Vaquero part 2

Note also. Normally when we speak of Ruger Only Loads it is dealing with the .45 Colt Cartridge. .357, .44 Special, .44 Magnum, and .45 Colt all have defined SAAMI pressures... But the .45 Colt is only 14K psi. Linbaugh did a bunch of testing with the large frame Ruger .45 Colt BH and found it could be loaded safely up to ~30K psi (Ruger Only Loads). Note RUGER large frame. This doesn't apply to the Colt SAA revolvers and their clones (Uberti, etc.) and New Vaqueros... Only RUGER large frame revolvers (with some exceptions like Freedom Arms revolvers). I believe the Ruger RedHawk also falls into this category. Anyway, you MUST know what you have and have done your research before using any ROLs. Otherwise stick to SAAMI and you are golden.

Hope that helps!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Clark. IDK for sure, but guessing the quoted comments are conflating "NM" with new/old model Vaquero, which is what I understood previously.
I definitely know what I have, I was sure what it could stand, and suddenly got some curveball about large/small frame da da da da. Not my first internet rodeo, so I'm asking everywhere. Thanks

-jb, mixing metaphors
 

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Not sure where the whole Vaquero talk is coming from, but rclark is correct on the Vaqueros and that NM = New Model. A Vaquero and Blackhawk are different guns. At any rate, any Blackhawk that starts with a two digit serial number or is a 44 Mag has a large frame and can shoot Ruger only loads.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
>Not sure where the whole Vaquero talk is coming from, but rclark is correct on the Vaqueros and that NM = New Model. A Vaquero and Blackhawk are different guns. At any rate, any Blackhawk that starts with a two digit serial number or is a 44 Mag has a large frame and can shoot Ruger only loads.<<
Yay, thank you for a straightforward answer. The Vaquero got intermingled with "Blackhawk." This model vs that Vaquero vs the Old Model and the new/old Vaquero with that frame is or isn't ... aargh.
I have a New Model (transfer bar) new manufacturer Blackhawk. It is compatible with Ruger only loads and I'm happy completing this thread. Thank you all for participating in my confusion

-jb, grinning
 
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Yay, thank you for a straightforward answer. The Vaquero got intermingled with "Blackhawk." This model vs that Vaquero vs the Old Model and the new/old Vaquero with that frame is or isn't ... aargh.
I have a New Model (transfer bar) new manufacturer Blackhawk. It is compatible with Ruger only loads and I'm happy completing this thread. Thank you all for participating in my confusion

-jb, grinning
Just wait untill you want to buy Replacement Grips ... what fits what is a nighmare !
Gary
 
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