Ruger Forum banner

1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I just bought a stainless steel Mark 1. According to the serial number (15-85333) it was made in 1979. Until I saw this gun I thought the earliest SS models were made in the mid - late 80's. I called Ruger to ask about the gun and the CS person said she could not find any record of SS models made in 1979 and it must have been a special run. Any one know anything about it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Good pics of both sides would be great and certainly helpful to some of the Ruger experts on this forum. There may possibly be some "proof" marks or other identifiers that help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Not sure how to upload images. According to the FAQ there is supposed to a box that says manage attachments, but I can't see it anywhere?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
I was curious if those were the original grips? Of all of the SS Mark 1s I have seen, which is certainly a small sample of what they made, they have all had the old styled grip. I remember them back in the early 80s as I almost bought one. I wish I had seen that one though if the grip is original.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,978 Posts
In the day of the Mark I, you could buy Ruger factory walnut grips from Ruger, with or without a thumb rest, as an option, but they were not supplied as regular equipment on the Standards (regular weight, tapered barrel models). I have a couple of vintage Mark Is with them and they are listed in the original manual as something you could buy for a whopping $6 in 1972.

However, I have never seen Ruger factory walnut grips with a gold medallion, which leads me to believe this is either a special run Mark I or those could be aftermarket grips. 1979 was about the time Ruger was switching over to the Mark IIs, however, and they did make some commemorative runs of the Mark I. This could be one.

That silver trigger is also unusual. This could also be a gun that was customized.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The grips are not original. They are after market, and even though they look good I am going to replace them with originals.

P.S. I didn't know walnut grips were available from Ruger. I may try to find a set.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,978 Posts
Regardless of whether it's a commemorative or a custom job, that is a very nice RST-4. Of the three vintage Marks I own, my walnut grip equipped RST-4 is my favorite. They have a feel and handling like no other Mark.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
On my "factory" stainless Ruger Mark II's, the color of the gun matches the color of the back of the bolt. That one just doesn't look right.

Hard to tell from pic but that trigger sort of looks like the older VQ wide trigger that was out for a while.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I don't have the gun in hand yet. I just bought it at auction from Gunbroker.com. It should arrive sometime next week. I also noticed the trigger looked a little different and suspect it has been customized.

Guess I'll send Ruger $10 and get an explanation and maybe some production history.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
I was corrected on a post a while back about Mark I's. Seems a Mark I is roll marked "Mark I" and only came with an adjustable rear sight. The unmarked, fixed sight early Ruger is actually a "Standard" not a Mark I. Mark II's come in both Standard (fixed sight) and Target (adjustable sight) and both are roll marked "Mark II" I guess it's popular to call the later Standard models a Mark I but Mark I's only came with adjustable sights and the Mark I roll mark. At least that's what I was told.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,978 Posts
I was corrected on a post a while back about Mark I's. Seems a Mark I is roll marked "Mark I" and only came with an adjustable rear sight. The unmarked, fixed sight early Ruger is actually a "Standard" not a Mark I. Mark II's come in both Standard (fixed sight) and Target (adjustable sight) and both are roll marked "Mark II" I guess it's popular to call the later Standard models a Mark I but Mark I's only came with adjustable sights and the Mark I roll mark. At least that's what I was told.
Absolutely correct, though many folks just continue to call anything prior to a Mark II, a Mark I, though, as you've pointed out, only guns with adjustable sights were actually stamped Mark I. The guns with fixed sights, known as the Standards in the Ruger catalog, were simply marked Ruger 22. Cal. Long Rifle Automatic Pistol. You either had a Standard or you had a Mark I. I actually have both.

The confusion results because Ruger continued to call the fixed sight models with tapered barrels a Standard when they went to a Mark II and they have continued this labeling even with the Mark III models with fixed sights and tapered barrels. Thus a "Standard", unless specified as to vintage, can refer to a model with a pre-Mark II mechanism, a Mark II mechanism or a Mark III mechanism. To clarify the version of the Standard being discussed, a lot of us just say a Mark I as a shortcut. Yup, we could just say "Standard" and assume everyone knows were not talking about a Mark II or Mark III Standard, but even a lot of Ruger fans can't make the distinction. Not technically correct, as you point out, but beats saying the Standard, you know, the one prior to the Mark II or Mark III, the one without the bolt release, tapered ears, LCI, magazine safety and so on.

Thanks for pointing that out, though. As I said, you are absolutely correct.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Looks like a sprayed on finish.
I sure hope you are wrong, but guess I'll find out when it gets here. In fact I will ask the seller to try a magnet on the gun before they ship it. If it is sprayed on the seller may have been fooled. The seller is a reputable dealer that has been in business a long time and it's unlikely, in my opinion, that they would deliberately misrepresent the gun.

P.S. I sent a request to Ruger yesterday for a certificate of authenticity and ask them if they could provide any history or additional information on the production numbers for SS pistols made in 1979.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Based on the pics, I believe the gun is an original SS. Looking at the 3rd pic, the front edge of the ejection port looks very "silvery" but on the 4th pic it has that dull-tarnish color (of course, colors on monitors will vary). Anyway, I believe the lighting and angles are effecting the image more than one would think. Not unusual for digital cameras - even the good ones.

Bottom line is I would bet it is original SS. Depending how SS is stored, it still can change color some. Also, SS only resists rusting and corroding, it is not immune to it. It may just be overdue for a good cleaning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
I had a Mark I hard chromed back in 1980. I'm sure there are lots of them out there with every finish imaginable.
I'm not sure how one could stainless steel plate a gun, or even spray paint SS. I've heard of chrome plating, gold plating, silver plating, nickel plating, etc, but never stainless steel plating. Is that possible?
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top