Bisley Question

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grymph

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 3, 2010
Messages
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I've just noticed that Ruger's Bisley grip frame doesn't look like other Bisley grip frames. I've looked at other brands and they all look the same. Why is Ruger different? Here is a Ruger pic:

http://www.ruger.com/products/newModelB ... odels.html

And here are some examples from other brands:

http://www.cimarron-firearms.com/Bisley/Bisley.htm

https://www.berettausa.com/e2wProductGr ... 4100001561

http://www.usfirearms.com/cat/bisley.asp

Does Ruger's grip frame feel the same as the other's? Why aren't they the same?
 

Driftwood Johnson

Blackhawk
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Howdy

Good observation. The other grip frames you are looking at are on replicas of the original Colt Bisley model. In 1894 Colt designed the Bisley model for the American team to use in the international shooting competition at the Bisley Range outside of London England. The Bisley Model was a specially setup Colt Single Action Army. The frame of the revolver was slightly different than the standard SAA, but the humpbacked grip frame, the trigger and the hammer were the main differences. The first Bisley models were setup as target models with a drift adjustable rear sight and a target front sight with removeable blade.

Here is a photo of a Colt Bisley Target Model:

coltbisleytarget.jpg


Colt also made the Bisley Model with standard non-adjustable sights:

cb-7462.jpg


The idea was that the grip shape was supposed to be more hand filling than the standard SAA 'plow handle' grip. Personally, I have always felt that the Bisley grip was developed for the 19th Century style of target shooting. When held the way we normally shoot a revolver today, with the arm extended and the elbow locked straight, a Bisley model tends to point down slightly at the floor. But 19th Century target shooters often held their revolvers with a slightly bent elbow. When held this way, a Bisley Colt will point straight ahead.

The Ruger version of the Bisley model is not the same as the original Colt Bisley, as you have observed. Personally, I have always thought the Ruger version was based on the design that Elmer Keith came up with when he designed his famous 'Number 5' revolver. This photo is not Elmer's revolver, I have not been able to find one. This photo is of the revolvers that Gary Reeder is producing from Ruger Blackhawks that he is modifying to be similar to Keith's Number Five.

Reedernumber5.jpg


As far as why Ruger came up with their version of the Bisley, all I can tell you is it is a little bit longer than their standard grip frame and allows you to more easily cram your entire hand onto the grip than you can with their standard grip frame.
 

flatgate

Hawkeye
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grymph":3snj94bh said:
I've just noticed that Ruger's Bisley grip frame doesn't look like other Bisley grip frames. I've looked at other brands and they all look the same. Why is Ruger different?

Elmer Keith!

flatgate
 

grymph

Bearcat
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Feb 3, 2010
Messages
6
The idea was that the grip shape was supposed to be more hand filling than the standard SAA 'plow handle' grip. Personally, I have always felt that the Bisley grip was developed for the 19th Century style of target shooting. When held the way we normally shoot a revolver today, with the arm extended and the elbow locked straight, a Bisley model tends to point down slightly at the floor. But 19th Century target shooters often held their revolvers with a slightly bent elbow. When held this way, a Bisley Colt will point straight ahead.

I guess now that i see that the bisley is supposed to affect the ergonomics of shooting my next question is: Does the Ruger version do the same? And is that desireable for more than target shooting? Anything to give the edge that one needs when they need it right?
 

2 dogs

Buckeye
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Driftwood, very well done. I will help you out with a pic of the original:
Keith5.jpg

It should be noted that there have been quite a few variations of Keiths famous sixgun since:
023.jpg
 

Yosemite Sam

Hunter
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Whether you've got big hands, long fingers (like me), or simply like having all your fingers on the grip, the Ruger Bisley is exceptionally comfortable. It also transfers recoil well, so if you're into big calibers it's almost a must.

-- Sam
 

Dale53

Blackhawk
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Aug 29, 2007
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Hamilton, Ohio USA
I have come to prefer the Ruger Bisley grip in Ruger revolvers. However, when I put Pachmayrs on a Ruger Black Hawk it becomes the most satisfactory grip of all for me. I am primarily a shooter and esthetics take a back seat to function for me when we are discussing handguns.

FWIW
Dale53
 
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I've got a bisley frame single six, It is a very comfortable gun to hold. Ruger's Bisley is surely better for heavy recoil, but also the weight of the gun. It doesn't feel as front heavy and has better balance.

I just wish Ruger's grip is more graceful like the Colts. I love the lines on them. The Colt pictures posted by Drifwood Johnson are great guns, they look so comfortable even though I've never held one.
 

Driftwood Johnson

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2 dogs

Thanks for the photo. I will be able to use it the next time this question comes up.

How about the rundown on the other photo with all the #5s? A couple look left handed. Can you identify any of them?

Regarding the Ruger Bisley grip and large calibers and heavy recoil; when I first started shooting 45 Colt Black Powder loads in CAS I was convinced I would need the Bisley grip on my revolvers to tolerate the heavier recoil that Black Powder would produce vs typical Smokeless cowboy loads. I found a Stainless Ruger Bisley Vaquero in 45 Colt (we used to call them Bisqueros) I only shot it once at a match. Turns out the recoil of 250 grain loads stuffed full of Black Powder is not so daunting as I thought. I went back to my regular Vaqueros with their plowhandle grips, and eventually I moved to a pair of 2nd Gen Colts. I prefer the plowhandle grip and I make no attempt to cram my entire hand onto the grip, allowing my pinky to curl underneath the grip. Under heavy recoil, the grip rotates in my hand, stopped by my pinky. It really is not a problem and I can shoot 45 Colt loads like that all day long.

I eventually sold the Bisley to help finance a Cimarron Cattleman, before I got my Colts.
 

JWhitmore44

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i like the Bisley grip for heavy recoiling rounds and long distance pistol shooting. They point quite naturally for me.

As far as those Pachmyers go, it has nothing to do with aesthetics. A single action supposed to roll up in your hand when you shoot it. If you put rubber grips on, the friction of the rubber grips tears up your palm. It's like "laying rubber" in your hand. they are great on double actions, but not single actions as far as I'm concerned.
 

Dale53

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JWhitmore44;
I guess we are all different in our likes and dislikes. Plus we all have different size hands and, no doubt, varying hand strength.

In a revolver in anything above .38 Special the base of my thumb just does NOT tolerate any recoil. It is VERY painful. However, with the Pachmayr grips I can tolerate most any handgun (including my TC 375 JDJ) without any problem.
NEVER had I had the rubber grips of either Pachmayr nor Hogue's bother the palm of my hand. NEVER...

Further, with heavy recoiling revolvers (even in Single Action) I have no desire to have them roll back and bury the hammer in the back of my hand). That might work OK with factory .45 Colts but it sure doesn't work in a .44 Magnum (at least for me).

In my early adulthood I worked with my hands and had quite thick skin. However, the last thirty years before I retired, I was a white collar type and the only hand work I did was my hobby work. So, I am not "hard handed" but what can I say. We just differ (and sometimes that is GOOD :D ).

YMMV
Dale53
 

flatgate

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Driftwood Johnson":1ifr5iy5 said:
How about the rundown on the other photo with all the #5s? A couple look left handed. Can you identify any of them?

Bill Grover's Texas Longhorn Arms.

99% of the Single Action revolvers out there ARE LEFT HANDED. Bill Grover fixed the situation and made a Right Handed sixshooter!

Southpaw Flatgate loves the classic Single Actions. I never take the gun out of my left hand to load, shoot and unload. How do you "righties" do it? :D

flatgate
 

grymph

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 3, 2010
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Now i wish i could get a double action with any of the single action grip frames. Do they have conversions?
 

M'BOGO

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grymph":xowjddlz said:
Now i wish i could get a double action with any of the single action grip frames. Do they have conversions?

I'll second that. A .45 Colt DA Bisley would round things out, since we're dreaming, make it with a swing out cylinder. It wouldn't necessarily be pretty, but.
 
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