Ruger Single Action Grip Spacers !!

Help Support Ruger Forum:

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
Not too long ago, I really had no idea about the use of using spacers when screwing your grip panels on to the grip frame....The reason I found out about them was simple. I had cracked yet "Another Grip Panel" by over tightening them. On another thread I casually mentioned of my self inflicted wrong doing. It was brought up that I was acting like a Gorilla 🦍 and it was my fault. Well I am not a 🦍, and I saw some kind folks bringing up the use of "Spacers" when applying the grips together to stop this from happening. Well probably most of you out there saying right now "why am I wasting my time reading this !!" Well to those guys, forgive me for that. BUT, I do not think I am the Only guy out there who has split a panel when tightening up the grips. Let's face it, when shooting the gun, cleaning the gun, & just handling the gun, the grips loosen, and we tighten. Till the next time, & tighten. Etc. Etc. Till we hear the pop and the wood is cracked and we say a not so nice word. The reason I'm saying all this is in case others are not aware of spacers to use. If you have an older gun wth old & beautiful grips that you may not be able to easily replace, please use spacers when applying or tightening your grips, for the gun's sake.....I hope other guys may hop on here and share their thoughts !! 👍
 

contender

Ruger Guru
Joined
Sep 18, 2002
Messages
26,120
Location
Lake Lure NC USA
I encourage folks to add the spacers all the time. I put them in all my Rugers that I can fit them in. The Bearcat is not one that takes a spacer easily.
But I've also bought several grips (some on guns) that had the backside of the wood busted because of ham-fisted,,, gorilla torquing types.
I've been known to carry a small screwdriver just for checking the underside of grips if I find a desirable Ruger to purchase when traveling to gun shows. Sometimes it can make a $50-$100 difference. (Think of the early FT's & the butaphane grips.) But a sharp eye with knowledge can see the screw ferrule pulled inward sometimes too.

I'll see if I can put up a few pictures of spacers later.
 

Cholo

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Dec 30, 2008
Messages
8,604
Location
Georgia
You can find these at most any hardware store. I usually file them down to .498". That can vary, though. Try them at .500 and file just to the point where your grips are tight. Go slowly!

1717339222461.png
 

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
You can find these at most any hardware store. I usually file them down to .498". That can vary, though. Try them at .500 and file just to the point where your grips are tight. Go slowly!

View attachment 47068
Hi Cholo, The spacer you showed looks like it is metal, like aluminum. Am I right ? If so, do you like those better than the typical white nylon ones?
 

contender

Ruger Guru
Joined
Sep 18, 2002
Messages
26,120
Location
Lake Lure NC USA
As noted,, the ones shown are aluminum. They work just fine. Cary used to put them with all his grips he'd make.

I prefer the nylon ones as they tend to be easier to find, easier to work down, and do the job. I also prefer to cut them down to .495 due to the varying frame thicknesses I've found over the years. The grip frames are polished a bit after casting,, and come in often a tad under .500 in width. Using .495 has worked quite well for me.
 

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
Mine are aluminum, but the nylon ones would work just as well.
I had not tried or even looked at the aluminum ones. I just try to find the thinnest ones I can as to not rub up against the spring. I guess whatever works to take up the space. I'll look at some next time I'm at the good old "Ace"......
 

G2

Hunter
Joined
May 8, 2006
Messages
2,567
Location
UT/AZ
Cholo & contender are spot on, they usually need a smidge filed off. You can even use the sidewalk / concrete floor to take off the smidge. Easypeasy
Here is the Description, Drawer & Bin location at the Home Depot….😳
My ACE has them also andl last time there they were in bulk boxes and less $$,,, but really were talking ~$1…🙄
1717341114470.jpeg
 

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
Well I guess the aluminum would definitely hold up well for sure, but I've used the nylon. Hey, whatever works. I saw one place where a guy uses a rubber hose/tubing material as it was easier to install. I don't see the rubber lasting as long though. Again, whatever works to stop a cracked grip from happening.....
 

contender

Ruger Guru
Joined
Sep 18, 2002
Messages
26,120
Location
Lake Lure NC USA
The rubber tubing,, if I'm not mistaken was actually a plastic aquarium tubing that is actually rigid in construction. Buy a piece,, and cut to length. It'll work. The whole concept is to provide resistance to the 2 halves of the grip ferrules to where you feel it tighten before you over-torque it to where the wood busts out.
 

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
The rubber tubing,, if I'm not mistaken was actually a plastic aquarium tubing that is actually rigid in construction. Buy a piece,, and cut to length. It'll work. The whole concept is to provide resistance to the 2 halves of the grip ferrules to where you feel it tighten before you over-torque it to where the wood busts out.
One of my goals in life is to not crack another panel......so spacers are the way to go. 👍
 
Joined
Oct 20, 2022
Messages
1,007
Location
Oregon
On either an aluminum or nylon spacer, clearance for the spring can be increased by putting a small bolt through the spacer with a nut snugging it up. Chuck the threaded end in a cordless drill and using a round file, remove material from the center section.

This gives the spacer an hourglass profile and eliminates clearance problems.

A pic is worth a thousand words…I didn't have a chunk of nylon or aluminum handy- but you can get the idea of what I'm talking about.
1717430795129.jpeg
 
Last edited:

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
I know a lot of you guys have been doing this a long time and have your own systems. Whatever works, works.....For me, I think I have found the way to go, so far at least....Last week I went to a large Ace store. I looked through the different types of spacers, all nylon type. Prior to this I was using the standard white nylon 1/2 " spacer. Then I tried to apply a spacer on an old model SS. That standard spacer could no way go thru that small space area. I thought to myself, I have to find a better way...hence my trip to the Ace store.....While there I looked and picked out some possibilities that might work. Well I think I found the way for me anyway. They had a black nylon spacer close to a 3/8 " size in length (but I think it is metric?) I also picked up some small thin white nylon washers. Anyway, I inserted the screw through the panel and when the screw poked through I put one of the washers against the wood and then put the black spacer over the washer, then put another washer over the end of the spacer. Then I screwed the screw into the other panel. Presto. It fit solid, flush, and square with that spacer right smack dab in the middle of that old model SS grip frame. Not loose, not tight, just right. The grips are flush and solid. No cutting, no grinding, & no sanding.....It works for me......I did this just last night ....Then I tried the same system on my NM SS. This one in 32 H&R. It worked ok, but it wasn't exactly perfect as I noticed a very slight little play movement on the top of the grips. I then took it apart slightly and added just one more washer onto the gun screw. So this one side had 2 thin washers on it. I screwed it back together and it is perfect. Tight, square, and flush all around. Again no grinding or cutting.....It works for me !!! Again, I know everyone has their own style on how to do these spacers, but for a new guy, or a guy with very little or no tools, I think this is the way to go .....I will go back to this Ace either Wednesday or Thursday and will get a few more of these spacers. When there, I will check the part numbers on them and even the washers if anyone is interested. 👍
 

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
Yeah, that 2nd photo shows like it was manicured to fit in there. That sure looks like a custom job. As far as the busted wood panel, yes I have seen that before, I am sad to say, on 2 of my guns. I caught on your last post about the Bearcat being hard to do. I guess you did it though ?? Looking at your spacer, wow that sure is a thin one...Wait, is this a photo of a Bearcat ? No, it's too big. I wouldn't really know as I don't have a Bearcat.....Thanks for sharing these photos. It is true a picture is worth a thousand words. What gun is this ? It's hard to tell looking at the trigger area ?? Just wondering....🙂
 
Last edited:

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
Yeah, that 2nd photo shows like it was manicured to fit in there. That sure looks like a custom job. As far as the busted wood panel, yes I have seen that before, I am sad to say, on 2 of my guns. I caught on your last post about the Bearcat being hard to do. I guess you did it though ?? Looking at your spacer, wow that sure is a thin one...Wait, is this a photo of a Bearcat ? I wouldn't know as I don't have a Bearcat.....Thanks for sharing these photos. It is true a picture is worth a thousand words. What gun is this ? It's hard to tell looking at the trigger area ?? Just wondering....🙂
I just noticed the SBH , and I don't have one of those either. I have to be satisfied with a regular Blackhawk. I did look up and saw the inside of the Bearcat grip frame. That is a tight fit from what I can see. I have never shot a Bearcat. Maybe some day. You never can tell.
 
Last edited:

Star43

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2023
Messages
1,268
Location
California
I just noticed the SBH , and I don't have one of those either. I have to satisfied with a regular Blackhawk. I did look up and saw the inside of the Bearcat grip frame. That is a tight fit from what I can see. I have never shot a Bearcat. Maybe some day. You never can tell.
I just watched the almost 3 minute Ruger tech talk tip on the new Ruger Bearcat.... Twice. I like that guy.....as I've watched a few of those before. I think I want a Bearcat now....darn, it's your fault !!
 
Last edited:

jstanfield103

Blackhawk
Joined
Sep 24, 2010
Messages
772
Location
Kentucky
looks like I will be running to the hardware store this weekend to find a few f these spacers this weekend. Thanks for all the numbers guy's
 
Top