No they are not. If you look at the size of the frames you can see the difference. The Old Vaquero's were .44 mag and needed the heavier, larger frame ( I carried one for a long time) but Ruger listened to the Cowboy Action Shooting people who wanted a smaller frame single action more like the Colts so they developed the New Model Vaquero in .45 Long Colt ( a lower powered round). I also had a New Model Vaquero which I recently gave to my son for his 51st Birthday and went out and bought a used New Model Blackhawk in .44 mag which has never been shot except at the factory.
My 3 Screw and GP100 are definitely less massive than my 90's era BH, but I have no concerns about feeding them anything .357. The BH, is overkill for loads published in the good 'ole days.My preference is that Ruger would go back to the medium frame for the BH for good for the .357.
Of course not.... But for the .357 cartridge, the New Vaquero is even overkill. Ever notice the cylinder wall thickness and compare to the .44Mag wall thickness? Yet both cartridges are set at about the same max PSI? So, no, the New Vaquero does not need to be babied! Also remember the medium frame is the same as was introduced for the .357 back in '55.... So, go shoot it as any .357 ... light or hot or hotter. You'll be fine. You'll wear out before the gun does .The medium frame New Vaqueros are not as strong as the large frame original Vaqueros.
Right you are! But we won't see a mid frame 357 on the standard Blackhwak frame with ribbed rear sight now that Ruger is making mid frame Flat Top Blackhawks in 357.My 3 Screw and GP100 are definitely less massive than my 90's era BH, but I have no concerns about feeding them anything .357. The BH, is overkill for loads published in the good 'ole days.
I wish Ruger would bring out an adjustable sight 3.5" model on the smaller frame, for the shooters that actually prefer SA revolvers for back country carry. Size matters, and sometimes less is more.