Ruger Three Screw .357 Blackhawk, the original Flat-Top (1955-1962) and the Old Model (1963-1972) are excellent platforms for building Colt Single Action size custom revolvers. With the coming of the New Models in 1973, Ruger not only made the single action simpler and safer for beginning shooters, they also removed the standard sized single action .357 Blackhawk from production. Three Screw Rugers were built on three frames, the smallish.22 Single-Six, the standard sized .357 Blackhawk, and large .44 Magnum frame. When the transition was made, the .357 Magnum moved up to be housed in the .44 Magnum frame. That is why very few .44 Specials are built on New Model frames as they would be the same size as the .44 Magnum, so what’s the point?
The .44 Magnum-sized New Models have been used for building truly powerful, five-shot single actions chambered in such cartridges as Heavy Duty .45 Colt, .454 Casull, .475 and .500 Linebaugh, and using the .357 Maximum frame, .445 SuperMag, and both the .475 and .500 Linebaugh Long/Maximum. We will look at some of these shortly, however we first checkout the more pleasant shooting sixguns, the .22s and .32s that could easily be called Single Action Kit Guns or Trail Guns. These little revolvers carry easily in pocket, holster, tackle box, or even a kit bag, if such a thing still exists. The name Kit Gun comes from a handgun compact enough to fit in the little bag made famous by the song from World War I, “Pack up your troubles in your old kit bag…” Today it is applied to any small-framed, small-caliber revolver or semi-automatic.
In the previous chapter I described the short-barreled, round-butted .44 Special L’il Gun crafted by Andy Horvath. A few years later I had Horvath build me two more truly little L’il Guns. This time we started with a Ruger .22 Bisley Model and a .32 Magnum Single-Six. The same basic work that had been performed on the .44 Special transformed these two small frame Rugers into family heirlooms. In addition to the regular work I had Andy swap grip frames so I wound up with a Custom .22 Single-Six and a Bisley Model .32. Both of these guns were written up in American Handgunner in the Sept/Oct 1995 issue.
The .22 Single-Six was responsible for the greatest sixgun shot I ever made or ever will make. Shortly after these little L’il Guns appeared I found myself on a varmint hunt out of Jarbidge Nevada. I was hunting with well-known writer Clair Rees and Rod Herrett of Herrett’s Stocks. If I did not have them as witnesses I would not even dare to relate what happened. We had tired of shooting with scope-sighted rifles and handguns, and pulled out the iron-sighted .22's. Since the hunt was sponsored by Winchester we all were shooting Winchester’s .22 Power Point hollow point .22’s. My .22 revolver was the .22 Single-Six from Andy Horvath. We were sitting on a slight hill overlooking a field with a dirt bank at the far end. Things had slowed down a mite so I asked them to spot for me while I shot at a little rock on that bank. I carefully aligned the sights, squeezed off a shot, and was told that it was just a little low. Holding up the front sight in the rear notch, perching the rock on top of the front sight, I slowly squeezed off the second shot and heard: "You hit it!"
When they put the range finder on it, the reading was 181 yards. "Guys I'm ready if a squeakie comes out on that bank.” A squeakie is a small ground squirrel, and sure enough in just a few minutes, one came out. I lined up the sights the same as I had for the second shot on the rock, squeezed off, and nailed the squirrel. A lot of luck? Absolutely! Could I duplicate it? I doubt it!! In fact, I learned long ago when a shot like this is made, the smart sixgunner immediately puts his sixgun away so there is no chance of being called upon to repeat such a performance. In fact I never fired that little .22 for the rest of the trip.
Three years ago I contacted Horvath once again with the idea of building a Trio of Trail Guns. L’il Guns designed for easy packin’ in desert, foothills, woods, or mountains, they would also be sixguns that would be easily handled by any of the grandkids. In spite, perhaps even a little because of, of the ranting, raving, and outright lies, of the out-of-step “mainstream media”, and the totally misguided anti-gun factions, who tell us kids and guns don’t mix, I'm doing everything I can to make sure that my eight grandkids are thoroughly immersed in the gun culture. It is the only future we have.
Three Single-Six Rugers were sent off to Horvath at his Diagonal Road Gunshop to have him perform his L’il Gun magic. The two Ruger .22s shot so well as they were I was a little hesitant, but only a little. The New Model .22 Single-Six Stainless-Steel, 6 ½” barrel was cut to 4” along with a corresponding reduction in the length of the ejector tube and ejector rod, a new base pin was fitted with a larger, but shorter head that is knurled for easy removal, the liability warning was removed from the left side of the barrel, and the stainless steel grip frame was rounded at the back of the butt, and the sharp edge removed from the toe of the butt. An extra nice touch was the checkering of the front of the ejector rod head. Factory ejector rod heads are very small often allowing the finger to slip off while removing spent shells. The checkering prevents that. Instead of the factory grip panels I found a pair of light-colored grips panels in my part box appearing to be of Goncala Alves that I felt would look good mated up with stainless-steel. They did.
The second New Model .22 Single-Six differed from the first in that it was a Bisley Model and blued. All the same operations were performed on this Bisley Model, however the altering of the grip frame and polishing of the warning label from the left side of the barrel necessitated re-bluing so the entire little .22 Bisley was refinished in a high polish bright blue. The grips supplied for this project had what appeared to be a lot of attractive grain and Andy’s refinishing managed to bring it out beautifully.
The third New Model Single-Six was chambered in .32 H&R Magnum and also had a blue finish. This sixgun was found used at Shapel’s Gun Shop at what I considered an incredibly low price for a high demand Single-Six, as these little adjustable-sighted .32’s are extremely hard to find. Horvath also applied one of his beautiful blue finishes after removing the barrel warning. The grip frame, since it is an aluminum alloy as on all the standard Single-Six models, was polished bright which looks very attractive when mated with the high polish bright blue. The factory grips chosen for this little sixgun were a reddish color and had originally been found on a stainless steel Vaquero. The bright blue, the polished aluminum, and the refinished reddish colored stocks, all come together to make a very attractive sixgun portrait. Someday, perhaps half a century from now, one of my great grandkids will still be using these little sixguns.
HAMILTON BOWEN: We often say of someone who is at the top of their field, "He wrote the book on…." Hamilton Bowen really did write the book on custom sixguns, appropriately titled The Custom Revolver. It is not a how-to book but rather a what-do- we-do book on custom sixguns. Anyone contemplating having a custom single action sixgun built should read this book for two reasons. First, it just may possibly give some excellent ideas on which direction to take, and more importantly, anyone having a custom revolver built will understand exactly why they cost a lot more than factory reproduced revolvers.
We spoke much of Bowen's work on Old Model Rugers in chapter 32. He also does extensive customizing on New Model Rugers. His Long Hunter starts as a standard Model Super Blackhawk or Bisley Model. A custom round barrel with a recoil proof ejector rod housing is installed along with a Bowen Custom front sight. He can also supply the Bowen rear sight and install a Bisley hammer on a Super Blackhawk or Blackhawk. Calibers available are .41 and .44 Magnums, .45 Colt, .50 Special, and .50 Action Express. A Light-weight version is also available on a standard Blackhawk with a tapered 4” barrel, metal removed from the recoil shield and loading gate, and fitted with aluminum ejector rod housing and grip frame. Needless to say, recoil can be very fierce in such a light-weight sixgun.
Bowen also offers The Nimrod, a 5 1/2” sixgun with an integral band around the barrel in front of the ejector rod housing that secures the ejector rod housing under heavy recoil. A post front sight is pinned to the express front sight base, while the rear sight is a Bowen Custom. Calibers available are .41 Magnum, .44 Magnum, .45 Colt, .454 Casull, .50 Action Express, .475 Linebaugh, and .500 Linebaugh. Single action sixguns simply do not get any better than this!
Bowen also offers action tuning, trigger adjustments, polished cylinder notch lead-ins, freewheeling cylinder, half-cock conversion, oversize locking cylinder base pin, regulating of barrel/cylinder gap, setting headspace, honing and reaming of cylinder chambers, and several versions of custom front sights. Custom barrels, of course are available, and standard Blackhawks can be converted to Bisley Models. If it is possible and if it is safe when it comes to converting single action Rugers, Hamilton Bowen can accomplish it.
DAVID CLEMENTS: Several years ago I had David Clements of Clements Custom Guns build me two Ruger Vaquero “Sheriff's Models” long before they were offered by Ruger as a factory production sixgun. Starting with two New Model round butt grip frames from QPR, I installed these on a 7 1/2” .45 and 5 1/2” .44-40, which were then both shipped off to CCG to have the barrels shortened, new sights fitted, and the final fitting of grip frames and grips. Clements settled on 3 7/8" for the barrel lengths by altering the head of the base pin to allow the ejector rod to do its work of shucking fired brass. Two steel ejector rods with crescent heads and two steel ejector rod housings, also all from QPR, were sent to Clements and these were also cut to fit the 3 7/8" barrels. Both the Vaqueros, one in .45 Colt and the other in .44-40, had chambers that were much too tight for the best accuracy with cast bullets and the factory barrels, so Clements opened the .45 chamber mouths to .453" and the .44-40 to .429". The result is two very easy to pack sixguns capable of handling heavy loads easily. Such loads exhibit much less felt recoil because of their QPR round-butted grip frames.
A 5 1/2" .44 Magnum Super Blackhawk was made into a much easier shooting sixgun with a Bisley grip frame, hammer and trigger. This sixgun started life as my 10 1/2" .44 silhouette revolver, however it was transformed into a Packin' Pistol when I found a Ruger factory Liberty Marked barrel at Shapel's Gun Shop. It was installed on the Super Blackhawk New Model, cut to 5 1/2" and I found I had a sixgun that would cut one hole groups at 25 yards with BRP's 295 grain Keith bullet over 21.5 grains of H110. Clements finished the project with the addition of Bisley parts.
Clements Custom Guns offers a full line of special features for Ruger's New Models single actions. Custom barrels can be the factory contour, straight bull barrel, octagon, ovate rib, even round with full-length rib. Several styles of front sights are also offered including express, post, and a modified post with a 20-degree forward slant. All barrels are fitted with an 11-degree forcing cone, .002”-003” barrel/cylinder gap, and cylinders are line-bored. Customers have a choice of six-shot cylinders in .44 Special, .44-40, .41 Magnum, .45 Colt, .44 Magnum, and even semi-automatic chamberings such as 10 mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP. Five-shot conversions utilize an oversized unfluted cylinder, recessed case heads, oversized base pin, steel ejector rod housing, interchangeable post front sight, freewheeling cylinder, and .800” bull barrel. Calibers available are .45 Colt, .454 Casull, .480 Ruger, .475 Linebaugh, and the .500 S&W shortened to 1.4 inches. Two very special conversions are the Ruger Old Army to .50 caliber (see Chapter 23), and the .22 New Model Single Six fitted with a match grade cylinder, oversized base pin, and custom barrel.
BEN FORKIN: It has been my good fortune to shoot many of the custom Rugers, both single and double action, crafted by Ben Forkin of Forkin Arms. Ben worked for Hamilton Bowen before moving to Montana and he is also a fellow Shootist which gave me the opportunity to try out many of his big bore single actions at the annual Shootists Holiday. But for some reason, I had never had him actually build a custom revolver for me. That changed all because of a hunting trip to the Penn Baggett Ranch outside of Ozona Texas as related in Chapter 27. Penn’s revolver was a custom Ruger, a Long Range Ruger, by Ben Forkin. Forkin had started with a Ruger .357 Maximum, re-chambered it to .445 SuperMag, fitted it with a 10” bull barrel, as well as Bisley Model parts, grip frame, hammer, and trigger. Ruger’s .357 Maximum had originally been aimed at the silhouetting crowd using a longer frame and cylinder to house the 1.600” .357 Maximum case as compared to the original .357 Magnum at 1.300”.
I put the Forkin .445 on paper than afternoon using Penn’s handloads with 265 grain Hornady Flat-Points and was well satisfied with the accuracy of the load A .357 Maximum was found, shipped off to Ben with the orders to make me a sixgun just like Penn’s .445 Ruger. As expected, Forkin performed all the action niceties such as action and trigger job, total tightening, post front sight mated up with a Bowen rear sight, and a beautiful deep blue finish. After receiving it back from Forkin, I added a pair of exotic wood, burl mesquite, grips from SK Custom. Whether shooting jacketed or cast bullets it performs to my highest expectations and is able to do with 300 grain bullets what my three .44 Magnum Long Range Rugers provide with 250 grain bullets
Ben Forkin does just about anything anyone could want to a New Model Ruger including action tuning, setting endshake, setting the proper barrel/cylinder gap, installing Belt Mountain base pins and Bowen rear sight, shortening existing barrels or installing new barrels, installing steel grip frames, and provide five-shot cylinders. His brochure says, “Pride in workmanship is evident in every job we turn out.” He is not exaggerating.
JOHN LINEBAUGH: Linebaugh's philosophy of handguns is found in the following quote: "We are a custom sixgun shop dedicated to the old school sixgunner. We follow the theories of Elmer Keith and John (Pondora) Taylor. Their's was one of big bullets, so is ours. Bullet weight and caliber are constants in external ballistics; velocity is a constantly diminishing variable.I believe high velocity to be a superb killer if placed with exact precision, and if it reaches the inside of the animal. But without exact placement, it lacks the penetrating qualities and thus it wastes its energy in flesh wounds. The big bullet does not have these shortcomings. It will penetrate fully from any angle, thus letting the hunter take shots with confidence that he would otherwise pass up with a `little gun'. I for one do not like big guns, just big bullets. With this in mind we offer models and ideas to the old school sixgunner. Remember, old school to us is powerful, practical, and packable."
John builds everything from Heavy-Duty six-shot and five-shot .45 Colt sixguns, through his most well-known cartridges, the .475 and .500 Linebaugh, and even before the advent of the .500 S&W Magnum, John was building long-cylindered and long-framed custom sixguns chambered in three 1.610” Linebaugh Long cartridges, the .44LL, the .475LL, and the .500LL, made from .30-40, .45-70, and .348 Winchester branch respectively. Linebaugh uses the Bisley grip frame almost exclusively calling its superior for accuracy and comfort. I certainly agree with that!
As far as I know, John Linebaugh was the pioneer when it came to building really powerful sixguns starting with his Full House .45 Colt loads, than the .500 Linebaugh, followed by the .475 Linebaugh all with free spinning cylinders which would rotate in either direction. This is especially useful if a bullet jumps the crimp and protrudes far enough forward that the cylinder will not rotate in one direction. With a free spinning cylinder, it can be rotated backwards and the offending round removed. We have a lot of excellent sixgunsmiths turning out high-quality custom single actions sixguns today. In fact the best gunsmiths of all time are plying their trade today. John Linebaugh was one of the first of the modern era of talented artists working in steel.
MILT MORRISON: Milt Morrison of Qualite Pistol & Revolver (QPR) has long been known for custom Rugers and some of the finest bluing imaginable. Milt’s latest project is The Chameleon .A chameleon is a little fellow with the ability to change colors to suit his surroundings, and while QPR's Chameleon is no little fellow by any means, it offers shooters four quick change options as to caliber and all on the same customer supplied Ruger Blackhawk mainframe/grip frame. While the original chameleon changes colors right before your eyes, The Chameleon from QPR is literally The Gun That Changes Calibers Right Before Your Eyes! The change is made quickly and easily and if I can do it, anybody can.
QPR’s prototype Chameleon consists of a New Model Ruger fitted with a 7 1/2” .45 Colt Douglas barrel and corresponding cylinder, a 7” Apex .44 Magnum barrel and cylinder, a 5” Shilen .41 Magnum and cylinder; and finally, a 5 3/4” Shilen .357 barrel and cylinder. All barrels are marked on the barrel ring for caliber and each cylinder is marked on the rim end of the cylinder. Later Chameleons will have the caliber markings etched with bold numbers on the barrels and on two sides of the cylinders.
One concern with any multi-caliber systems such as this is that of getting a large caliber cylinder matched up with a small caliber barrel. This is impossible with The Chameleon as the tolerances are such that it is impossible to match a large caliber cylinder with a small caliber barrel. They simply will not fit together, however it is possible for someone who is not paying attention to match a small caliber cylinder with a large caliber barrel. However if this happens no harm would be done.
The QPR barrel ring is in the patent pending stage. It is this barrel ring that makes everything work. The barrel ring is forward of the threads and butts up against the mainframe as the barrel is screwed into place. This ring has two holes, one to accept the base pin and the other the ejector rod. To put everything together properly, The Chameleon comes with a barrel wrench with an adjustable stop and a sleeve that goes into the ejector rod hole. It is this sleeve and the base pin, which keeps the barrel in the proper position after it has been screwed into the frame with the proper torque.
QPR says of The Chameleon: “This conversion allows the shooter to change calibers on the same gun. It is designed to exchange barrel & cylinder with ease in the field. This allows your trigger pull & general feel of the gun to remain the same regardless of the activity being performed (i.e. hunting varmints vs. big game vs. target shooting.)”
As I have said, if I can use the system anyone can. To assemble one particular caliber the barrel is screwed on hand tight. The barrel wrench is then used to tighten the barrel until the stop on the wrench touches the frame. One can also see and feel the barrel ring line up properly with the frame. The check on proper alignment is whether or not the base pin can be inserted easily. If it will not the barrel and mainframe alignment needs to be adjusted. Once this has been accomplished check to see that the extractor rod sleeve easily enters its hole in the frame. If both the sleeve and the base pin are easily inserted in the alignment is correct. All this takes more time to explain that it does to accomplish.
Once the alignment is correct the cylinder is installed with the base pin, and using the provided combination cleaning rod and base pin extractor, the ejector rod housing sleeve is seated it into the ejector rod housing hole, the ejector rod housing, ejector rod and spring as one unit are installed and secured with the ejector rod housing screw. The Chameleon itself including all barrels and cylinders and the mainframe are beautifully bright blued as only QPR can do it! The grip frame is one of QPR’s brass versions fitted with black micarta grip panels. The hammer is a modified Bisley-style and looks very attractive on the standard Blackhawk frame and grip frame and is also extremely functional. All barrels have black ramp-style front sights, with two barrels having green inserts. This is a high-quality and extremely good-looking sixgun.
The Chameleon has several advantages. One would be the ability to carry what are basically four separate revolvers with a minimum of weight. For those shooters who happened to live under a regime limiting the number of handguns, The Chameleon allows one to have four revolvers counting as only one. However, the main advantage is pride of ownership and a high quality conversion kit from a high-quality gunsmith.
GARY REEDER: If there ever was a supermarket of custom sixguns, it is found at Gary Reeder Custom Guns. Reeder not only offers dozens upon dozens of custom New Model Rugers on Blackhawks, Bisleys, and Vaqueros, he can also tune and embellish customer’s guns. For example, my wife, Diamond Dot, has had all of her Cowboy Action Shooting sixguns tuned and fancied by Gary Reeder. Her Modern Class sixguns, a pair of stainless steel 4 5/8” New Model .357 Blackhawks, have been highly polished and decorated with engraving. Gary uses standard patterns and machine engraving to allow fancying up sixguns without depleting the customers wallet. Diamond Dot’s Traditional Class CAS sixguns are a pair of consecutive serial numbered 5 1/2” stainless-steel Vaqueros, which have also been polished and covered with cattle brands. Then just to make them a little different and since Dot uses full house .38 Specials in all of her sixguns, they have been marked in script with “ .38 Special.”
One of my favorite long-range sixguns is the Ruger stainless-steel 10 1/2” Super Blackhawk. Reeder tuned this .44 Magnum, gave it a bead blasted finish, and placed “John Taffin The Shootists” in script on the left side of the barrel. When I came up with an extra .357 New Model cylinder it was sent off to Gary Reeder with my Bisley Model .357 Magnum. Reeder removed the sharp edges at the front and back edges of the butt, converted the extra cylinder to his .356 GNR, and finished everything in high polished blue embellished with gold. A most beautiful .357 Sixgun with an extra boost in power using the .356 GNR, which is based on the .41 Magnum necked to .357.
Reeder offers the African Hunter in either .475 or .500 Linebaugh on a Bisley Model complete with Express sights and built-in muzzle brake; and The Long Colt Hunter, a stainless-steel .45 Colt with Bisley grip frame, hammer, and trigger, custom front sight, and ebony grips on a slightly rounded grip frame. The Vaquero is a grand platform for such sixguns as The Doc Holliday Classic in .45 Colt with a 3 1/2” barrel and round butted grip frame; The Tombstone Classic, another 3 1/2” .45 Colt this time with a Bird’s Head grip frame; The Gambler’s Classic .45 with a 2 1/2” barrel without an ejector rod, and we could go on and on. Every Reeder custom offering is embellished with the appropriate engraving. All are very attractive easy packin’ sixguns.
One of the slickest handling and easiest packin’ sixguns from Gary Reeder is his .45 Backpacker. He starts with a stainless-steel Vaquero, shortens the barrel to 3 1/2”, re-crowns the muzzle with a deeply concave crown, fits a foreword-sloping Colt-style front sight and then fits a shortened aluminum alloy ejector rod housing. To match the weight saving advantage of the alloy ejector rod housing, the steel grip frame is also replaced by an aluminum frame slightly rounded with all sharp edges removed. Metal is removed from the loading gate and recoil shield to further remove weight, and the hammer and trigger are also re-contoured to remove as much weight as possible. The result is a 30- ounce Backpacker capable of handling heavy .45 Colt loads, that is, if the shooter wants to hold onto them.
At the other end of the spectrum, one of Reeder's latest custom sixguns is the .510 GNR 7 1/2” Hunter Model. Three loads are available for this truly big bore sixgun, the .510 GNR 350 grain Short at 1,250 fps, the .510 GNR 350 grain Long at 1,360 fps, and the .510 GNR 435 grain Long at 1,310 fps. As one might expect, this sixgun is made for the heaviest and most dangerous big game.
One of the all-time classic single action sixguns is Elmer Keith's #5SAA with its grip frame formed by combining a Colt Bisley Model backstrap with Colt Single Action Army trigger guard. This design goes always back to the late 1920s and for short time was offered on the Texas Longhorn Arms Improved Number Five. Now Gary Reeder is offering fully custom single actions built on a standard frame or large frame with a slightly longer #5SAA to better fit most shooter’ hands as Keith had relatively small hands. Reeder is also producing his own frames, and will be offering several different sixguns. One will be called the #5 and will be his recreation of Elmer Keith’s #5SAA in both blue and stainless steel and chambered in .44 Special and .45 Colt; the #6 will have a larger frame with New Model style lock work and chambered in .44 and .41 Magnums with six-shot cylinders, and the .454 with a five-shot cylinder; and finally something I have been wanting for nearly a half century, the Frontier Classic. This will be a blending of the Colt Single Action and Three Screw Ruger. It will also be available in both .44 Special and .45 Colt and in blue or stainless steel. All sixguns will be deluxe grade and also available with custom stocks, engraving, and octagonal barrels. The single action sixgun is definitely alive and well.
JIM STROH: Last, but definitely and certainly not least, we come to Jim Stroh of Alpha Precision. While I prefer to convert Old Model .357 Blackhawks to the much used, respected, and loved .44 Special, the larger framed Ruger Super Blackhawk is larger than necessary for a .44 Special and already chambered in .44 Magnum so nothing would be gained, however it is a perfect platform for the .45 Colt. The .44 Special built on a Colt Single Action-sized Ruger .357 Flat-Top or Old Model Blackhawk is not a sixgun for magnum velocities, but rather an easy packin' and shooting sixgun that will deliver 250 grain bullets at muzzle velocities from 900 to 1,100 feet per second. So, when I wanted a custom .45 Colt single action sixgun a Ruger New Model Super Blackhawk was sent off to Alpha Precision.
Cylinder, barrel, hammer, trigger and grip frame of the original Super Blackhawk were all replaced. Stroh used one of his custom five-shot cylinders matched up with a 5 1/2” barrel with one of his interchangeable front sight systems. The action was totally tuned and precisely fitted so there's absolutely no endshake nor side-to-side movement of the cylinder. The steel ejector rod housing was fitted precisely and securely using Jim’s double dowel method. This system consists of two small steel dowels fitted behind the ejector rod screw hole on the barrel and two corresponding holes in the ejector rod housing. Standard ejector rod housings held on with one screw will normally shear the screw with the recoil from heavy loads. Stroh’s system takes all the pressure off the screw and prevents the housing from moving when the sixgun is fired.
Alpha Precision offers many options for the Ruger Blackhawk such as custom cylinders which are lined-bored by having each chamber locked in line with the bore as it is chambered, total action jobs including hardening of the hammer notch and trigger sear, free spinning cylinder and half-cock notch added, full-length cylinder pin bushings fitted along with an oversized base pin, new custom oversized bolt for precise fitting of cylinder, special contoured ramp front sight base with interchangeable blades, and even the fitting of S&W adjustable rear sights to the fixed sighted Vaquero and flat-topping of New Model frames.
Stroh’s Best Grade Ruger New Models are built with custom cylinders and premium quality match barrels, free spinning cylinders allowing rotation in either direction, a full-length cylinder pin bushing and matching oversized base pin, chambers held to minimum dimensions and lined-bored, Stroh front sight fitted with interchangeable blades, a Bowen adjustable rear sight, a steel ejector rod housing fitted using the double dowel system, hammer spur checkered, special barrel crown and forcing cone cut, and the final finish is high polish blue or stainless with “Best Grade” marked on the top of the frame. Again, we have a custom single action built as well as it is possible for a Master Craftsman to accomplish.
Everything at Alpha Precision is not big bore. At the other end of the spectrum, Stroh fits S&W adjustable rear sights and a corresponding front sight to the little .22 Bearcat resulting in a single action kit gun capable a being precisely sighted in. Stroh also offers a Best Grade stainless steel Ruger Single-Six .22 converted to .32 Magnum with a custom oversized cylinder and a flat-topped frame with and Alpha Precision front sight. Stroh’s sixguns are works of art and as such he is recognized by his fellow gunsmiths of the American Pistolsmiths Guild as a Master artist when it comes to working with steel.
Ruger make an excellent basic single action sixgun. In today’s world it is one of the premier shooting bargains available. Any of these talented artisans can start with a Ruger New Model and turn it into a total work of sixgun art that not only looks beautiful, but also performs the same way.