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This is a discussion on Ruger Single Actions within the Single Action Revolvers forums, part of the Handgun Forum category; A thread on the Henry forum brought up a question about when did quality begin to fade on the Ruger single action guns. The member ...


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Old 04-26-2015, 03:29 PM   #1
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Ruger Single Actions

A thread on the Henry forum brought up a question about when did quality begin to fade on the Ruger single action guns. The member there who brought it up joined the Ruger forum to get information to buy a new Vaquero but got discouraged by all of the negative reviews and problems that people have been having. He also noted that the loyalist fan boys tend to get hostile when the Ruger reputation gets questioned.
I don't want this to be a general bashing of Ruger's quality control. But I know that we have some very experienced and knowledgeable members here who have had guns in recent years that were not up to earlier Ruger standards. And I trust your advice and opinions.
The only Ruger single action that I am interested in are the Vaquero models and would like to have one. But I have read too many negatives about them to want to buy a new one.
What I am looking for here is a range of model years and even specific models to look for on the used market.
I am not in a big hurry to buy one but want to have the knowledge to use when I am ready or just get lucky and stumble across a good deal.
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Old 04-26-2015, 03:58 PM   #2
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Given that the Vaquero is a relatively recent model - came out in '93 - I don't know that there really is a preferred vintage or a more reliable vintage.

Seabee, I think it's going to be a matter of your expectations and, of course, your intended use.

How concerned are you about accuracy? The biggest complaints I hear are about accuracy and the need to open throats, ream out forcing cones and deal with varying dimensions once cylinder hole to the next or, worse, misaligned holes. If you'e just plinking, not sure it's a big deal unless you get a gun that leads up too much. If you're concerned with accuracy, though, like I am, then I would be nervous about buying any Vaquero or Blackhawk. It's a mystery to me why Ruger still uses the dimensions they do on these revolvers after all the complaints they get, but that's the way it is.

Not a fan of fixed sights, in general, but if the gun is properly regulated so the sights are reasonably close to the point of impact, not an issue for me. In my experience with fixed sight Rugers, though, it's a real crapshoot as to where they will print. Again, if you're just shooting steel at 10 yards or less, not a big deal. Me, I just can't abide a revolver that do better than 10 yard steel plate accuracy.

What kind of loads do you want to shoot? The original Vaqueros were built on a standard Blackhawk frame and could take any loads approved for use with the standard Blackhawks. The New Vaquero is a bit smaller, closer to the original Colt, but not a gun you want to shoot with hot hand loads. Me, I've had enough of hot magnum loads, so this would not be an issue for me.

To be honest, I'd be more inclined to buy a used VQ from a seller that could verify the accuracy and so on than take a chance on a new one, out of the box. Heck, if I was looking at a cowboy action kind of gun, I'd be more inclined to trust a Cimarron as far as getting an accurate shooter.

P.S. TGR is the real expert on this revolver, not me.

Last edited by north country gal; 04-26-2015 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 04-26-2015, 04:41 PM   #3
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To widen the topic I think Ruger took a big quality hit about two years ago. My takedown 10/22 needed work before it would go bang. I was able to remove the slag but it shouldn't have been there in the first place. I really wanted a Shopkeeper but it had known problems and I passed on it.

But a few months ago I bought a takedown Charger and it was tops in quality. The fit and finish was perfect.
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Old 04-27-2015, 03:28 AM   #4
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Thank you NCG, this is more or less what I expected. I see a Vaquero show up in my LGS every now and then and they always look nice. But I don't want to buy someone's problem gun. And the price is always too close to retail for a new gun for me. If I got one I would be shooting factory ammo.
I would like to buy American made but want a good gun for the money. And I don't want to buy a gun that needs a lot of work to get it to shoot straight.
I have become more of an accuracy nut than I expected probably because shooting paper targets seems to encourage that. If I had a place to shoot steel plates in action shooting maybe a gun that was close enough would be okay.
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Old 04-27-2015, 03:38 AM   #5
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There may be another reason for upholding the quality.
If you wanted to sell one, why berate it?
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Old 04-27-2015, 06:03 AM   #6
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I might ask, which Vaquero, the old style based on the Blackhawk or the new model patterned after the old Colt SAA? Personally I think quality began to slide when they changed their marketing style after Bill Ruger died.
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Old 04-27-2015, 06:11 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by 44s Rock View Post
I might ask, which Vaquero, the old style based on the Blackhawk or the new model patterned after the old Colt SAA? Personally I think quality began to slide when they changed their marketing style after Bill Ruger died.
+1 I think it was a different company, back when Bill Ruger was running the show.
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Old 04-27-2015, 07:05 AM   #8
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Bill Ruger didn't like hi-cap magazines. But he also said they would never make a firearms that wasn't remarkable better than the competition. That is why they never made an AR15. He said there's would not be any better than anyone else's. Now they seem to make whatever they think will sell.
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Old 04-27-2015, 07:13 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by 303Lithgow View Post
Bill Ruger didn't like hi-cap magazines. But he also said they would never make a firearms that wasn't remarkable better than the competition. That is why they never made an AR15. He said there's would not be any better than anyone else's. Now they seem to make whatever they think will sell.
+1
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Old 04-27-2015, 08:13 AM   #10
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This my opinion The New Vaquero are junk and the new Uberti / Cimarron are the best in SA and don't break like Colts and new Vaquero's . If you measure most Ruger revolver chambers you will find 2 or 3 different sizes chambers .. I had 4 Vaquero's in 44-40 and I had to send 2 back and they replaced the barrels and cylinders in both guns . I've own over 200 SA Rugers in my life and this is the only one left which I built . Ruger NEVER made a sheriff and /or birdshead grip in 44-40 .

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Old 04-27-2015, 08:20 AM   #11
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Hey TGR. Nice shooting. Nice revolver. And nice photography.
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Old 04-27-2015, 11:46 AM   #12
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I was waiting for TGR to show up with that beauty.
I know that Ruger can't put the time and craftsmanship into the guns they sell.
And they don't have a performance shop like Smith has. But it would be nice if they did.
I think I will be sticking to Uberti and Cimarron for newer guns and keep an eye open for an older Vaquero.
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Old 04-27-2015, 12:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RetiredSeabee View Post
But it would be nice if they did.
I think I will be sticking to Uberti and Cimarron for newer guns .
Do you have the upgrade in your Uberti/ Cimarron . The 1st two are replacement parts and the 3rd one need a hole drill . The newer guns have these upgrades .





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Old 04-27-2015, 01:22 PM   #14
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Do you have the upgrade in your Uberti/ Cimarron . The 1st two are replacement parts and the 3rd one need a hole drill . The newer guns have these upgrades .





I don't know I haven't taken it apart yet. I suppose I should to see what I have.
What can I expect if I don't have these?
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Old 04-27-2015, 04:00 PM   #15
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This is the old Colt designed and break easy . The pawl and spring is a Ruger SA parts .
Attached Images
File Type: jpg hammerspring.jpg (43.1 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg triggerspring2.jpg (30.7 KB, 1 views)

Last edited by tx gun runner; 04-27-2015 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 04-27-2015, 04:28 PM   #16
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Mine was made in 2013 I think.
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Old 04-27-2015, 05:51 PM   #17
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Mine was made in 2013 I think.
They been doing the upgrades for over 10 yrs , so your ok .
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Old 05-03-2015, 11:49 AM   #18
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2 Months ago I bought new a Blackhawk convertable 45colt/45auto
Shoots great looks great and I am very happy.with it. I usually by
used because of cost and never have had any big problems with
any if my Rugers......Tom
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Old 05-03-2015, 04:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pappy View Post
2 Months ago I bought new a Blackhawk convertable 45colt/45auto
Shoots great looks great and I am very happy.with it. I usually by
used because of cost and never have had any big problems with
any if my Rugers......Tom
You can usually check out used firearms first too.
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