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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
1979-vintage New Model Blackhawk convertable. Originally owned by a co-worker's father who passed away, the revolver literally had had only one cylinderfull fired through it, and then lightly carried, apparently with snakeshot loaded, as that was the residue left in the barrel (which fortunately was easily cleaned after after a 36-year incubation period with Mil-Comm Bore Cleaner, a bronze brush and a steel Tornado brush).

Sent to Ruger for examination and rejuvenation, including barrel alignment and sight replacement (the rear sight had to be adjusted to the FAR right when zeroing), an action job, hammer replacement with a lower Super Blackhawk hammer, internal action components replaced, cylinder base pin replaced with a tighter-fitting pin, cylinders timed, mildly battered original grips replaced with a fitted set of rosewood grips, and the external finish polished.

The gun is simply a blast to shoot, and exceptionally accurate-especially after its trip to Ruger. I'd forgotten just how much fun it is to shoot full-house .357 magnum cartridges through one of these, and the 9mm cylinder provides for inexpensive higher quantity shooting (and possible competition use). While in m previous Vaquero I referred the 5.5 inch "artillery" barrel, on this Blackhawk the 4.6 inch barrel just looks "right" (and is a great field/carry length). I'm currently standardizing on 158 gr .357 loadings for practice/recreation/carry; Hornaday's 158 gr XTP has played to good reviews, so that's my "field/wilderness" cartridge; I'm finding that @ 15 yards, POA/POI is pretty much the same for 158 gr .357 and 115 gr 9mm, which is a nice benefit to me.

While it came with a perfectly serviceable Safariland Blackhawk specific leather lined holster (from back in the day when Safariland still made leather holsters)(whose exterior leather cleaned up nicely after some refurbishing), I had Tactical Tailor custom make a tanker-style holster for field use. I found that their Grenade Pouch nicely houses 4 nested Tuff Strip reloading stars, and their zipper-compartmented Admin Pouch nicely contains (and weather shields) the spare cylinder, and has an external pouch for pepper spray (or for .357 or 9mm autopistol magazines that I'll be obtaining to experiment with as single-action speedloaders).

A great revolver made a magnificent one by Ruger; it'll be used for field carry, possibly hunting, and possibly competitive shooting. Given that the NM .357 is on the .44 magnum frame, this thing is tough enough to repel armor assaults, and the .44 cylinders with only .357/9mm chambers bored are heavy enough to constitute a deadly weapon in and amongst themselves....

Best, Jon











Best, Jon
 

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Looks great.
And, great photography..... ;)
 

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Very nice! Congratulations, that was a great find. I am sure you will enjoy it for a long time.
 

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Great looking gun & nice job on the photography. I just got one of the Lipsey's Blackhawk 357/9 Stainless Flattops. Took it to the range yesterday for the first time - fired 38 spec, 357 Magnums & some cheap Federal aluminum case 9mm. The gun is great - this is my first experience with a single action revolver. It is my understanding that the gun I just bought is built in a slightly smaller fram than the gun we are discussing in this thread. How significant is that size and weight difference?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Great looking gun & nice job on the photography. I just got one of the Lipsey's Blackhawk 357/9 Stainless Flattops. Took it to the range yesterday for the first time - fired 38 spec, 357 Magnums & some cheap Federal aluminum case 9mm. The gun is great - this is my first experience with a single action revolver. It is my understanding that the gun I just bought is built in a slightly smaller fram than the gun we are discussing in this thread. How significant is that size and weight difference?
The size difference in yours essentially provides for a slightly slimmer, slightly smaller cylinder and cylinder frame. While I've never personally weighed mine, I've seen the weight quoted by Ruger at both 46 and 48 ounces-go figure. Yours is significantly lighter-I believe around 40 ounces.

Essentially, my "older" New Model BH is the .44 magnum frame and cylinder simply chambering .357/.38 Special and 9mm-it's WAY over-engineered for the chambered cartridges (not that I'm complaining in the least-I'll have no worries about safely chambering pretty much ANY factory .357/9mm within SAAMI specs).

Yours still has exemplary engineering, but has been downsized proportionately to what's needed for .357-not .44 magnm, and to have more of the traditional Colt Peacemaker/earlier smaller-frame Ruger proportions, and I believe that you also have a more aggressively beveled cylinder, making for slightly easier re-holstering.

You will also have an internal lock, utilizable as desired, and a revised pawl-when you're re-loading yours, you merely spin the cylinder to the "click" and it's properly lined up to insert a cartridge into the cylinder chamber; on my older BH, if you hear the "click," you gone too far, and have to spin the cylinder totally around to access that specific chamber.

You'v got a great modern classic-enjoy it!

Best, Jon
 

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Great looking gun & nice job on the photography. I just got one of the Lipsey's Blackhawk 357/9 Stainless Flattops. Took it to the range yesterday for the first time - fired 38 spec, 357 Magnums & some cheap Federal aluminum case 9mm. The gun is great - this is my first experience with a single action revolver. It is my understanding that the gun I just bought is built in a slightly smaller fram than the gun we are discussing in this thread. How significant is that size and weight difference?
You picked a great first Ruger single action. It's chamber indexing feature for ease of loading and unloading may be lost on you because you haven't handled any standard Blackhawks that are still made w/o that feature.

Since the internal lock in the grip frame was eliminated in 2012, your flat top doesn't have that and you won't miss it.

To put numbers on the difference between your mid frame size flat top and the full size Blackhawks; your cyl is .060" smaller in diameter and .903" shorter in length with a corresponding size reduction of the cyl frame. Not a lot but noticeable. However in the .357 caliber your FT still is safe for any maximum loadings (which is not the case for the 45 chambering in the mid size flat top.)

The only other key difference is the grip frame size: the standard BHs use the XR3-RED size and the FTs use the XR3 size (Colt single action size) with the difference shown below.

 

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Nice Blackhawk and nice job dialing it in. You're giving Ruger all the credit but you did a good bit yourself it sounds like and you deserve credit for that as well. Very tastefully done - looks terrific.
 

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You picked a great first Ruger single action. It's chamber indexing feature for ease of loading and unloading may be lost on you because you haven't handled any standard Blackhawks that are still made w/o that feature.

Since the internal lock in the grip frame was eliminated in 2012, your flat top doesn't have that and you won't miss it.

To put numbers on the difference between your mid frame size flat top and the full size Blackhawks; your cyl is .060" smaller in diameter and .903" shorter in length with a corresponding size reduction of the cyl frame. Not a lot but noticeable. However in the .357 caliber your FT still is safe for any maximum loadings (which is not the case for the 45 chambering in the mid size flat top.)

The only other key difference is the grip frame size: the standard BHs use the XR3-RED size and the FTs use the XR3 size (Colt single action size) with the difference shown below.

Thank you for this information. This is very helpful for someone like myself who knows very little (nothing) about single action revolvers. When I took the new FT to the range last week the RSO was an old friend who was a cowboy action enthusiast in his younger days. He has a couple of vintage SA Army Colts and was carrying a Uberti 357 Colt clone with him at the range. I was offered the chance to compare the Uberti with my new FT. I have a lot to learn about this new to me variety of handguns. FUN!
 

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Sweet Gun, i love my 4.6 BH also, far more versatile than my Bisley BH with its 7.5 inch artillery barrel. Thanks for the pics.

:)
 

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Mine is at my dealer now,hoping to get it this week......

I also saw no need for a long barreled 9mm Blackhawk, the 4 5/8" seemed perfect.

With all the .45 LC/ACP convertible Vaqueros and the .45 ACP Birdshead, I wonder why no .357/9mm convertible Vaquero or Montado.....
 

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Mine is at my dealer now,hoping to get it this week......

I also saw no need for a long barreled 9mm Blackhawk, the 4 5/8" seemed perfect.

With all the .45 LC/ACP convertible Vaqueros and the .45 ACP Birdshead, I wonder why no .357/9mm convertible Vaquero or Montado.....
Still wishin' for a 3.75" Birdshead Vaquero convertible in 357/9MM.....
 

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Nice looking piece for sure.
 
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