.30 Carbine question.

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twerpymoon

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Son-in-law and I went to a small gun show last Saturday. He spotted a .30 carbine New Model Blackhawk on a table amongst some Vaquero's and asked the owner if it was alright to pick it up. Guy says go ahead. "Belonged to my Dad. Don't remember him ever shooting it, just carried it around on occasion."

I could believe it. Slight muzzle wear from a holster. A few tiny scratches and some dings on the grips. Otherwise great shape.

$425 OTD with a box of ammo. That was a no brainer! "Besides", I told son-in-law, "we can shoot .32-20 and .32 ACP out of it since it's a New Model." I read it on the interwebs so it has to be true. Right?

One problem. And this is where the question comes in. It has a recessed cylinder. I thought all New Models had flat back cylinders. Serial number 51-01806. Old Model parts cleanup?

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Mobuck

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32 ACP maybe but 32/20 is a totally different cartridge with a rim. Checking a cartridge dimension schematic says the 32/20 may not chamber (it's 0.025" longer than the 30 M1) and for sure the .408" diameter rim will protrude from the rear of the cylinder by 0.065"
 
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My Old Model .30 Blackhawk will readily chamber the .32-20, but the rim protruding out the back of the cylinder absolutely prevents cylinder rotation, or even closing the loading gate.

I'm told most New Models will chamber and function with those, but you bring up a good point about the cylinder in yours. I dunno. :?

No clue about the .32ACP.
 

contender

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I don't have any NM .30 Carbines,,, but I do not think it can chamber AND fire .32 acp. And yes, most NM .30 Carbines can use 32-20's from what I've heard. But,, to make sure,, just get a few rounds & see if they chamber, AND cycle around.
 

needsmostuff

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Shooting 32-20 in a new model is common for many. But my 32-20 brass is near and dear to me and it is rough on it poping it in a carbine .
Then there is the .308, .311 bullet thing ????
I think better to tool up for the 30 carbine cuz it is what it is.

Back to the question about the cyl . What I see in the picture is a firing pin recess not a recess for a rim . This was common on the old models and may be a parts leftover thing.
As mentioned if in doubt stick some 32-20 brass in there and see if it will spin all the way around.
I would nix the 32acp plan. It may actually fire but would be so loose in the chamber it would certainly split the brass and accuracy would be non-existent .
 

GarrettJ

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You can find Ruger year of manufacture for New Model Blackhawks at https://www.ruger.com/service/productHistory/RE-NMBhawk30.html. The earliest they list is 51-02629 in 1974. Yours is a bit earlier than that.

I have a similar revolver. It has a later serial number than yours, but still lower than the first one listed on Ruger’s site. And Ruger notes that the info is “reference only” and may not be completely accurate.

Like yours, mine has chambers cut to recess the case heads. Like you, I assume mine is a transitional model with a New Model frame, but using up old stock of cylinders. So no possibility to use .32 ACP or .32-20 brass. Just shoot it with .30 Carbine, as designed. Accuracy is excellent on mine. Enjoy.
 

contender

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Actually,,, ALL of the NM .30 Carbines start with the prefix of 51-xxxxx. The Ruger factory site isn't always "correct."
The first NM .30 Carbine Blackhawk was 51-00001 in 1973,, and during the first year of production,, went to 51-02628.
 

hittman

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RENE puts that serial number as 1973 production; the first year for New Models.

I'm wondering why the s/n is etched on the cylinder. Did Ruger do that on guns that were not convertibles?

Regardless .... nice gun, I sure enjoy my OM.
 

twerpymoon

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Well, as has been mentioned, .32-20 sits up too high.
.32 ACP falls partway into the chamber.
.32 S&W sits flush but has plenty of side to side movement. If push came to shove, would most likely go bang. No sense pushing it though.

GarrettJ, does your cylinder happen to have the serial number etched on it?
 

Hondo44

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No big surprise; an early New Model gun with a left over Old Model cyl, just as you surmised. You can call it a transition model so common in any type manufacturing as changes evolve.

No matter what you do to the rear face of the cyl it won't affect proper and safe chambering of the 30 carbine ammo since it headspaces on the case mouth.

As said above, the chambers are not recessed which is not done with rimless ammo. It just has a firing pin groove cut in like Ruger .22 cyls, etc. Obviously by shortening the later New Model cyl, the extra step and cost of cutting the firing pin groove was eliminated but still affords the same firing pin protection.

The details on what works and what doesn't:

Ruger's NM .30 Carbine Blackhawk will shoot off the shelf .32-20, no re-chambering needed. If you reload, you can even reload 32-20 in .30 Carbine dies and the case necks will not be worked as much. Use a .32-20 shell holder. There's a difference in bullet diameters, .312” vs. .308” but they shoot with fine accuracy.

The .312" bullets may tend to raise pressure slightly in the smaller .308" barrel diameter although of no consequence in the robust Ruger cyl and way under its max pressure limits. And you may have some leading with lead bullets depending on hardness.

So if you reload you can use .308 bullets in your 32-20s.

Even though the .30 Carbine is a rimless round it's a good thing the NM lets the .30 case head stick out more than just the rim thickness since the .32-20 rim is .016" thicker. But may bind slightly in some revolvers and the rear cyl face just needs a slight facing off.

.32-20 cannot be fired in OM Ruger .30 Carbine cyls as is. The chambers seat the .30 carbine rimless case heads flush with the cyl face, so the rimmed 32-20 case head won't fit far enough into the end of the .30 chambers. By simply recessing the chamber mouths to the .061" thickness of the .32-20 rim they will shoot in the OM chambers. Or Facing off the rear of the cylinder .061”, will fix that. Either method will still allow you to shoot 30 carbine safely.

Other alternate cartridges:
You'll probably find the .32 H&R Mag and the .327 Federal Mag much more fun to shoot without the ear splitting report of the 30 carbine round. Performance of the .327 closer to the 30 Carbine and with fine accuracy although you may get some split cases occasionally.
 

Hondo44

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hittman said:
RENE puts that serial number as 1973 production; the first year for New Models.

I'm wondering why the s/n is etched on the cylinder. Did Ruger do that on guns that were not convertibles?

Regardless .... nice gun, I sure enjoy my OM.

Occasionally. The main rule is, there are no rules. It could be because it was an old model cyl, to prevent someone at the factory thinking it was the wrong cyl to ship out with the New Model gun.
 
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Hondo44 said:
You'll probably find the .32 H&R Mag and the .327 Federal Mag much more fun to shoot without the ear splitting report of the 30 carbine round. Performance of the .327 closer to the 30 Carbine and with fine accuracy although you may get some split cases occasionally.

I consider the 327FM to be a "rimmed .30 carbine" cartridge . . . also "straight-wall .32-20". :wink: :wink: :wink:

If nothing else, it allows the more straightforward reloading procedures so familiar to revolver fans without the concerns of resizing a "bottleneck" case or worrying about the proper crimp for auto-pistol rounds. Very nice round to play with. JMHO
 

AR_hillbilly

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I bought a 30 carbine at a show last Saturday too, gave a little bit more for it ($500) but it's a later 3 screw with adjustable sights. If I'm understandin y'all right I can shoot 327 Fed Mags in it as well as 30 carbines? I have a box of each but sure don't want to mess up my shooter...or my carcass! haha
 
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All .30 Carbine Blackhawks have adjustable rear sights.

All you can do is carefully try a .327 cartridge and see if you can close the loading gate over it and rotate the cylinder properly. Be careful and good luck.
 

AR_hillbilly

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OK thanks, I didn't realize they were all adjustable. I figured they were like the 22's, some drift adjustable and some fully adjustable. Learn sumpin new every day!
I tried a 327 in it, cylinder rotates free. Reckon I'll try a shot or two in a few days. Thanks again
 

GarrettJ

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twerpymoon said:
GarrettJ, does your cylinder happen to have the serial number etched on it?
Yes, it does.

hittman said:
I also wonder what the "F" may represent that's etched on the cylinder.
Not sure, but this seems to be common as well. My .30 C cylinder has a “C” or maybe an “O” etched in that location.

Looking at some of my other cylinders, I find other letters or marks opposite the serial number etchings. Both cylinders from the .45 convertible are marked with a “D”. The two from the Buckeye 10mm/.38-40 don’t appear to be a letter, but they do appear to have been marked by the same electro-pencil. Just a short line dragged between cylinders, so maybe an “I” or “l”.

I have serial numbers but no extra letters on the 10/.40 cylinders.

For non-convertibles, I have serial but no letter on the .327 Blackhawk. And just to be inconsistent, I find a “D”, but no serial etched on the .32 Single Six.
 

needsmostuff

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AR_hillbilly said:
If I'm understandin y'all right I can shoot 327 Fed Mags in it as well as 30 carbines? I have a box of each but sure don't want to mess up my shooter...or my carcass! haha

That is an absolute NO to shooting a 327 or 32 mag or 32 long or short in a 30 carb.
The thought is you can use a 32-20 but that is it.
Pure and simple.
 

Onty

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needsmostuff said:
That is an absolute NO to shooting a 327 or 32 mag or 32 long or short in a 30 carb.
The thought is you can use a 32-20 but that is it.
Pure and simple.
30 Carbine, Base diameter: .3548 in (9.01 mm)

.32-20 Winchester, Base diameter .354 in (9.0 mm)

.327 Federal Magnum, Base diameter .337 in (8.6 mm)
 

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