New To Me Ruger Old Army and some Questions

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Joined
Dec 6, 2022
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Location
Massachusetts
Howdy

Long time no see.

I just got hold of a Stainless Old Army. It came with some oversized aftermarket grips and I would like to replace them with correct grips. I posted a photo below of the Old Army with the after market grips.

I just checked the Ruger website, parts for the Old Army are not available.

Checking what is marked on the grip frame it says: KXR-3. Just that, no RED.

So, where can I find correct grips for my Old Army? All I want is plain, non-checkered walnut grips. Grips seem to be running around $75 -$100 so I want to be sure I get grips that fit correctly.

The nipples all came out of the cylinder nicely, none are frozen in place, but the Pedersoli nipple wrench I have does not really fit them correctly.

Anybody know where I can get a correct nipple wrench for an Old Army?

Also, while I'm at it, I think this is a very early one.

The Serial Number on the side of the frame is 27XX. If you look at my photo you will see I 'erased' the last two digits, but that is what the number is. 27XX. I have not been able to find a reference to when this one was made.

Any help with dating it, finding some grips that fit, and a nipple wrench?

By the way, the bore is spotless, as are the chambers in the cylinder. I should have a real shooter here, I just want to get it set up correctly.

Thanks

Ruger Old Army 02 SN Altered.jpg
 

hittman

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Use the Classified Section here.
Seems you’re looking for fairly common items.


 

G2

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Those 4 digit guns were the first of the Stainless, 1975. AND it should be missing the “Warning” on the barrel, nice.

It appears it has been polished up Bright & Shinny.

you can find a OA nipple wrench on ebay ~$25.

However the OA nipple wrench is not the best option.
XCELITE L6 3/16" Long Handled Nut Driver
and you can get them at ebay also, for less money than the Ruger Wrench, and it works so much better. Control.
$10.50 shipped to your door, I like the Xcelite because it has a hollow shaft (good inside length) and a bigger handle.



As for grips it does need the XR3-RED, Send me your email address via PM, and I will send you some pictures/ options.

Word of Caution;
You want to be very carefull to make sure you have the Base Pin locked in BEFORE EVER USING THE LOADING LEVER, Very common mistake to get in a hurry and a little sloppy, you will put a slight kink on the pin. When one tries to straitened,,, It Breaks!!! ~$75 when you can find one.

Nice Old Army, enjoy!
 
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contender

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Nice one there. HOWEVER,, the RENE lists the serial number of 27xx as a very early 1976 production. According to the RENE,, the numbers start in 1976 with 2695 & go to 7790. And the "Liberty" guns didn't start until 2894.
As for the grips,, it SHOULD be a XRN-RED grip set you'd need. Go to the posting about grip frames to see the shapes. Bill Hamm did an EXCELLENT pictorial of them. Basically, the base of the rear portion of the g/f should have a slight flare to it. The XR3's are straight all the way down the back.
I'd get the nut driver wrench & pass on the Ruger factory one. A nut driver wrench is MUCH better.
 
Joined
Dec 6, 2022
Messages
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Location
Massachusetts
Thanks for all the replies.

I posted my questions on the SASS Wire and several shooters told me the grips from an 'original model' Vaquero should fit my Old Army. I have a couple of 'original model' Vaqueros in the safe and I will see if that is true.

Thanks for dating my Old Army to 1975 or 1976. Yes, looking in the book Ruger And His Guns it seems the Stainless Old Armies had a satin finish, so I would not be surprised if this one had been bright polished by an earlier owner.

I will be looking into the nut driver.

Question: what is RENE?
 

BearBiologist

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If you'd like some elkhorn or moose antler, you can try Patrick Grashorn (aka "Executioner"). He can make just about anything you want with as much bark as you want and is easy to work with.

I just gave my daughter a custom Vaquero (OM) with bighorn grips and a matching Bowie. Patrick did the grips for me. He's done about a dozen sets over the years for me, even matching my wife's Vaqueros and my Pythons.
 
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yes, just take one of the 'nipples' and go to any tool ,hardware store, and get the plastic handled "nut driver" that FITS your "nipple" (ha Ha, this we gotta see...):rolleyes:

you want to make 'er nicer, start rubbing it down with a couple of old 3M Scotchbrite pads, back and forth and around and around and it will come out looking MORE 'factory' , less like you 'pimped' your ride...........;)
 
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Hondo44

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The KXR-3 is the casting number, Casting numbers not only tell you the grip/grip frame size but also the material, whether the grip frame is an old model or new model, the trigger slot size, and if it has an internal lock or not.

So KXR-3 tells us the grip frame is stainless, it's the XR3-RED size, and for an Old Model which of course all Old Armys are (no transfer bar). The only thing you need to know is the size, and which vintage emblem is correct for a 1976 produced Ruger Single Action. Those from your Vaquero are correct. Therefore any grips for the following marked frames are the size you need: NXR3-RED, XRN-3RED, NXR3-RED, XRN-3RED, XRN-3, KXR-3, XR-3

Grip size comparisons:
URL]]
1670450440443.png
 
Joined
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A photocopy of the original manual came with it, but it was faded, so I went to the Ruger website and downloaded the latest version of the manual. Holy cow, 40 pages. But full of lots of good information. I have not shot Cap & Ball in a long time. I had some CCI #10 and #11 caps left over from years ago, so I fired a few, just to make sure the nipples were not worn down. The manual says it takes either #10 or #11, but the #11s fit better.

Then I took it completely apart to clean it. It was not bad, just some very minor soot. I doubt if the original owner shot it much. I did discover the spring and plunger for the hand were in backwards, but I put them back in the correct way. It was working fine, even with the spring and plunger in backwards.

I may get a chance to shoot it this weekend. I have plenty of Schuetzen FFg, caps, Speer .457 round balls, and I should have some Wonder Wads laying around someplace too. Years and years ago I used to goop Crisco over the balls, but once I discovered Wonder Wads I stopped gooping Crisco.

Ruger Old Army Disassembled Completely SN Altered.jpg
 

Rclark

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I just use cream of wheat as my filler, and no crisco. Most of my shooting BP is with 777. Enjoy!
 
Joined
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I just use cream of wheat as my filler, and no crisco. Most of my shooting BP is with 777. Enjoy!
Curious to know why you need filler when you can ram the ball home with 20-25 grs of FFF in the cylinder.. I also use 454 balls which makes loading easier still cuts a ring and I don't use goop or wads. Chain fire pretty much comes from loose or missing caps

If you want it to go bang every time use Remington #10 caps and change out the nipples to Treso have shot 500-600 rounds and no FTF :)
Have fun with that Ole Smoke Wagon.
This is the pair I shoot in SASS

1670479323151.png

1670479386351.png

I also load with one of these to make life much simpler
1670479538768.png
 
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Rclark

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Why? I like my .457 bullet to just clear the mouth when seated over compressed load. I believe I remember it was 'said' to increase the accuracy. Seems to work for me. At the range bench I use use Lee dippers for powder and for the cream of wheat. BTW the load I use only leaves room for about 1/8 of cream of wheat on top.... Works fine and don't have to disassemble the gun to load.

Looks like a nice stand for loading ... and a nice pair of six-guns :) .
 
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I started with .457 balls and they were just a little harder to load than .454. As far as the " bullet to just clear the mouth when seated over compressed load." Shooting in SASS we really don't look for that kind of accuracy. Shouldn't be any different than shooting 38 wad cutters and 38 special, 44 specials in the longer mag cylinders.
The stand is really a blessing for reloading. In a normal SASS match since you load each gun a min. of 6 times. If you look at the one picture I don't even keep the ram rods in the gun, but they are in with my loading stuff just in case:)
Thanks for the complements.
 

BearBiologist

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I did (don't shoot BP much anymore) Here WA State we could carry a BP pistol for back-up during muzzleloader season. Used the Triple7 50gr 45 pellets=I did used a fiber wad over the bullet=less cleanup that with grease.

Hunted elk one season on special permit=no luck. Took deer in Cali.

Lots of lions & black bear here in WA, so you wanted to carry something while packing.
 
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