New NM BLackhawk 357 Questions

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sjs

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 22, 2016
Messages
171
Just got a new Ruger NM Blackhawk 357 and immediately cleaned it and went to the range. Could not be happier with how it handles and shoots. Two questions arose when shooting, and cleaning.

1. It is a 4.62" barrel and the base pin does not come completely out of the frame as it is blocked by the ejector rod tip that protrudes from the frame. I have owned several other Blackhawks and Super Blackhawks and a Hunter but the barrels were longer. So I did not encounter this. However, I also own a New Model Vaquero with a similarly short barrel and on it I can remove the base pin entirely. Is this normal for the short barrel NM Blackhawk?

2. I needed to adjust the sights to zero it and the elevation screw moved normally. However, I could not get the windage screw to budge. I have a jeweler's set of screw drivers and to find a blade thin enough for the slot I had to use one not as long as ideal so I did not try to force it, but I did use considerable force without any movement. I put some Kroll's oil on it and will let it sit tonight but is that screw normally very hard to move?
 

woodsy

Blackhawk
Joined
Jan 5, 2012
Messages
724
Can you remove the cylinder when you move the base pin as far forward as possible? If so, I don't see a problem. When I clean I have no need to remove the base pin; just the cylinder.
 

sjs

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 22, 2016
Messages
171
Yes, I can remove the cylinder. I can clean it, I just have never encountered this before on a single action.
 
Joined
Dec 11, 2002
Messages
7,772
A lot of the newer , new models the longer head ( extension) of the base pin keeps it from falling out and losing it out in the field....as for the sight windage put a bit of Kroil in the blade slot on top, so the blade can move ( slide) in the slot, it is under spring tension, and the "notches" of of the screw and the point ( edge) of the bottom of the blade, need to be able to rotate ( engage) and go "click" 8) :roll: :wink:
 

Johnnu2

Buckeye
Joined
Jun 26, 2003
Messages
1,612
Have you tried to move that windage screw in BOTH directions, or only one direction>>>?

I might suggest taking that screw completely out and removing the sight blade just to check and see if the little spring is actually in there and installed correctly...

Just a thought.

J.
 

Hondo44

Hawkeye
Joined
Apr 3, 2009
Messages
7,715
Longer barrels make no difference; the ejector rods and housings are the same length, except the 10-10 1/2" barrels. It's the length of the pin's front tip that differs..
 

sjs

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 22, 2016
Messages
171
Appreciate the help guys. The Kroil worked but I do not like the poor fit I have on the windage screw. Does someone know the specific size of bit I need for a proper fit on this screw? The sets made by Grace for Ruger Single Action revolvers seem to be for the larger screw heads on the revolver, not for one this small.
 

Johnnu2

Buckeye
Joined
Jun 26, 2003
Messages
1,612
Perhaps you could try one of those tiny screwdrivers found in the kits to repair eyeglass frames.

I don't know the answer to your question, but IIRC I use the above mentioned tool(s).

J
 

Hondo44

Hawkeye
Joined
Apr 3, 2009
Messages
7,715
You won't find screwdrivers marked with the thickness of the blade. My screwdriver modified to fit my Ruger single action windage sight screw is .016" thick by .120" wide. But you won't find screwdrivers labeled with their blades width.

I like to pick up S&W sight adjusting screwdrivers that used to be packed with their target model guns (more currently it was a key chain screwdriver which still work well). You can still find the screwdrivers and key chain variety at gun shows and ebay, etc., fairly cheap around $3.00. You'll see the older ones which are very collectible go for hundreds: ignore those.

Most of the interchangeable tip screwdriver sets, Chapman, Wheeler Engineering, etc., have a tip that will fit the specialized target sight adjustment screws: with narrow slot.

Although on occasion I've still had to modify screwdriver tips to fit certain screws! When i do, that modified screwdriver is dedicated to that gun from then on. The best fitting screwdrivers are those you modify to fit perfectly.
 

sjs

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 22, 2016
Messages
171
Hondo44 said:
My screwdriver modified to fit my Ruger single action windage sight screw is .016" thick by .120" wide.

Just what I needed, thanks.
 

Pal Val

Buckeye
Joined
May 30, 2006
Messages
1,529
Every Ruger handgun I own that has adjustable sights has had the rear sights replaced by aftermarket sights, mostly Millett and Williams. The factory sights are not up to the quality of the rest of the gun, in my opinion. I'm not saying that the factory sights are bad, just that it's easy and not expensive to upgrade the sights, and you end up realizing more of the accuracy potential of the gun.

My opinion. I could be wrong.
 

LAH

Buckeye
Joined
Jun 6, 2002
Messages
1,424
My base pin won't remove unless the ejector rod housing is removed.
 
Joined
Nov 5, 2007
Messages
7,559
I was always told the base pin won’t drop free so it doesn’t get lost while shooting. Rugerguy pointed this out.

I do have some guns that the base pin drops free and others that it won’t. I’m not sure which style I prefer.
 

Hondo44

Hawkeye
Joined
Apr 3, 2009
Messages
7,715
The cyl pins with the flange on the exposed tip that sets against the front of the frame are about 1/8" longer and can not be removed.

The earlier and later styles w/o the flange which are 1/8" shorter are removable.
 

sjs

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 22, 2016
Messages
171
Well, so far I kind of find the base pin being unremovable is a convenience. It just surprised me because I had never seen or heard of that before. My sights are now just fine as well after a Kroil bath. I am very pleased with the revolver after about 400 rounds, mostly 38 but a good number of 357.

I am surprised at the cylinder ring that developed as I am always very careful about closing the gate with a chamber lined up with the barrel. I am reading that this does not necessarily mean poor timing in the case of the Ruger New Models. If that is true I can live with it.

What surprises me most is how good the thing feels in my hand when I shoot it. I shoot one handed and shoot for accuracy out to 20 yards, the limit of my indoor range, and also one handed point shooting up close, and finally shooting fast but with an attempt at accuracy using both hands. The gun felt heavy when I first picked it up at the FFL, but shooting it feels great. This was unexpected because my favorite gun to shoot before this was the smaller and lighter New Vaquero. I expected to enjoy the ability to shoot large numbers of full power Magnum loads with the heavier Blackhawk, and possibly hunt with it, but I did not expect it to be such an enjoyable range gun even with the 38 loads.
 

Hondo44

Hawkeye
Joined
Apr 3, 2009
Messages
7,715
sjs said:
I am surprised at the cylinder ring that developed as I am always very careful about closing the gate with a chamber lined up with the barrel. I am reading that this does not necessarily mean poor timing in the case of the Ruger New Models. If that is true I can live with it.

It's true, it's not poor timing.


CYLINDER ‘STOP TRACK’ MITIGATION AND CENTERING (single and double action revlvers):

You'll see in other posts, that not all people care about this issue and are quick to tell you. The cylinder line scribed by the cylinder stop is about the most obvious sign of wear. Not just a sign of shooting but also of cycling, opening for checking, or loading and unloading. If you aren't already aware, there are two things that you can do to mitigate or minimize cyl scribing or ‘stop track’:

1st HANDLING:

When you close the cylinder on a double action, with your left hand grasp it around the bottom of the frame with thumb and forefinger each in the cylinder flutes opposite each other. Position them at 3:00 and 9:00 o'clock just as the cylinder locks into place. The cyl stop will lock into the stop notch w/o having to rotate the cylinder with cyl stop rubbing on its surface. This will become a habit whenever you close a double action cylinder and you'll no longer have to think about doing it. This will prevent a FULL CYLINDER RING, limit it to an interrupted ring between cyl notches, and show a properly handled revolver.

2nd POLISHING THE CYLINDER STOP:

To mitigate “cylinder stop track" for all SA and DA revolvers - preventative action you can take and the 1st thing I do on any revolver of mine, new or used is pull the cylinder (or open it, in the case of DAs) and polish the cylinder stop top surface!

Many come with file marks just waiting to carve out a line and groove in your cylinder finish! Stainless guns are the worst, they can gouge like aluminum. I have to look at the cyl stop surface with a 10 power jeweler's loop or my 5x gunsmith glasses (which are excellent eye protection as well) to truly see if the stop needs polishing. What looks good to my naked eye can be bad enough to mark up the cylinder. The sharp stop edges can really do damage and don't need to be knife edge sharp to function properly with a nice tight lock up.

Swing out or remove the cyl and I mask off the frame and breech face all around the stop with blue masking tape because I use a Dremel tool and it can slip off the stop. I wear my gunsmith 10x glasses and look for any irregularities. If there are any marks, I use a VERY FINE abrasive wheel in the Dremel tool to polish out the file marks, etc. I only advocate the fine abrasive wheel for removing tool marks in the surface of the bolt which can be pretty rough. It works very well in experienced hands and it's quicker; about 5 seconds. But I don't break the sharp edges with the abrasive wheel. And now is the time to change the contour of the stop ball if it needs slight re-contouring to center the ‘stop track’ in the cylinder notch leads and around the cyl. The highest point of the ball is where the ‘stop track’ is scribed. If the track is to the rear of center, a slight amount must be removed at the rear of the center of the ball to move the high point forward.

If no file marks, I go straight to polishing. With a little felt buffing wheel in the Dremel and white rouge (used for stainless steel) I put a mirror finish on the top surface. This is when I also address the sharp edges; I leave them nice and square but just dull the knife edge with the buffing wheel and the rouge. And I don't overdo it.

So I feel everyone is free to make their own choice of tool usage based on their own experience. If they feel more comfortable to do it by hand I don't tell them not to and I also don't tell them not to use a Dremel tool.
 

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