Rugers new "alloy steel"

Help Support Ruger Forum:

Joined
Apr 5, 2004
Messages
2,790
Many firearms on the Ruger website now appear to be constructed of "Alloy Steel"... what exactly is this?

Is it superior or inferior to normal stainless or carbon steel? Is the blueing process any different or is it related to a different finish all together?

Here is a quick example of what I'm referring to:
AlloySteel.jpg
 

slippingaway

Blackhawk
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
525
Eh, probably just means they're casting the parts with some lighter metals mixed into the steel. I'm trying to think of negatives that alloying the steel might cause, and I'm not coming up with anything. I guess maybe it might affect the hardness of the steel, but proper heat treating would cancel that out.
 

Talegunner

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 5, 2010
Messages
28
I think you guys are reading too much into this as regular steel is described as : Steel is a metal alloy whose major component is iron, with carbon content between 0.02% and 2.14% by mass...........................Ruger is just using the terminology to make it sound special :D :D :D
 

pisgah

Buckeye
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,633
All steel is "alloy steel". Without some alloy of some sort, it's iron. "Alloy steel" in this case is, I believe, just an ad ploy for the gullible.
 

Yosemite Sam

Hunter
Joined
Mar 18, 2002
Messages
2,113
pisgah":vuw4ircx said:
All steel is "alloy steel". Without some alloy of some sort, it's iron. "Alloy steel" in this case is, I believe, just an ad ploy for the gullible.
Yep, I agree. That, and since Ruger is a casting company, and as such is really into metallurgy, I could excuse them for tossing out pedantically correct jargon like "alloy steel" where most people would use "steel".

It is confusing in a market where "alloy" often has a connotation meaning "aluminum". However, pedantically, this is just as incorrect as calling a different alloy of metals "steel".

-- Sam
 

revhigh

Hawkeye
Joined
Aug 31, 2005
Messages
5,590
Ale-8(1)":svabrsht said:
. . . as opposed to "pot metal".

;)

LOL !!! HAHAHA ... wouldn't do any gun manufacturers any good to brag that 'their slides are made of pot metal !!' :D

REV
 

pisgah

Buckeye
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,633
revhigh":zmz5w247 said:
Ale-8(1)":zmz5w247 said:
. . . as opposed to "pot metal".

;)

LOL !!! HAHAHA ... wouldn't do any gun manufacturers any good to brag that 'their slides are made of pot metal !!' :D

REV

Wasn't all that long ago that folks talked down about Rugers because they used investment cast parts instead of forged. I guess they may have a bit of leftover sensitivity from that era, and think "alloy steel" just sounds cooler.
 

alienbogey

Bearcat
Joined
Nov 14, 2008
Messages
71
Don't forget that the 'Alloy Steel' LCP also has, per the referenced advertisement, a 'Black, High Performance, Glass-Filled Nylon" frame.

Some people would call it plastic.
 

blume357

Hawkeye
Joined
Nov 15, 2005
Messages
8,581
High Strength Space Age Polymer = Plastic

Alloy Steel just doesn't do it for me, Me thinks those at Ruger could do a lot better in their creative writing dept.
 

427mach1

Blackhawk
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
970
I would like to know what type of alloy (4340, etc.), stainless (18-8, etc.), and heat treat was used. However, this would probably open the "liability door" if someone were to determine via Rockwell hardness testing or other means that the steel was not as specified. By keeping the descriptions vague, they avoid potential problems.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2002
Messages
5,300
I've got a little different take on this.

I don't think anything has changed, but Ruger has needed a way to describe their different steels and finishes.

In the old days, there was stainless, and there was blued. That was easy. So now, with the different finishes on both stainless and "not stainless", they needed a way to describe their gun steels that were not stainless.

So, if a gun was brushed stainless, gloss stainless, blackened stainless, or target gray on stainless, the term stainless is easy for us to understand.

Now that there're newer finishes being applied to what used to be blued, like the black finish on the non-stainless SR9c, and the spray-can wrinkle finish that is applied to the newer non-stainless 10/22's, as well as the traditional blued finishes, we just needed an acceptable descriptor to cover the same non-stainless metal they've always had, where now, the finish applied to the metal is as important as the metal itself.

The term used by Ruger, "alloy steel", means, to me, only that it is their traditional non-stainless gun steel.

WAYNO.
 

Stubshaft

Bearcat
Joined
Mar 2, 2010
Messages
30
Steel itself is an alloy. I agree with Wayno that in the old days if it was blue/black it was steel. If it was gray/chrome it was stainless. Now we have the brushed stainless finish on a corrosion resistant metal frame...

...potmetal!
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2004
Messages
2,790
I guess my problem is, every time I've ever heard the term alloy, I've always conjured up images in my head of a pot-metal door handle in a car I rode in as a child, and from there a Jennings frame and/or slide

Of course, my Sig 239 uses an alloy frame... hmmm
 

22/45 Fan

Hunter
Joined
Dec 8, 2001
Messages
2,123
427mach1":3dvyaxur said:
I would like to know what type of alloy (4340, etc.), stainless (18-8, etc.), and heat treat was used. .
18-8 (18% Cr, 8% Ni) is 304 stainless and is not used in firearm manufacture. It has very high corrosion resistance but in not very strong and cannot be heat treated. All of the "300-series" stainless steels share this characteristic.

Guns are made of one of the various "400-series" stainless steel that are much stronger and can be heat treated to improve their strength and hardness. They don't have extreme corrosion resistance but are far better than any carbon steel.
 

22/45 Fan

Hunter
Joined
Dec 8, 2001
Messages
2,123
DA_TriggR4Ruger":3r7ot30h said:
I guess my problem is, every time I've ever heard the term alloy, I've always conjured up images in my head of a pot-metal door handle in a car I rode in as a child, and from there a Jennings frame and/or slide

Of course, my Sig 239 uses an alloy frame... hmmm
Uh, lets see, Chrome-molly high strength steel is an alloy. Tools steels are all alloys. Cutlery steels are alloys. Stainless steels of various types and uses are all alloys. The ultra high strength aluminums used in guns, automobiles and aircraft are all alloys. Brass is an alloy.
 

427mach1

Blackhawk
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
970
18-8 (18% Cr, 8% Ni) is 304 stainless and is not used in firearm manufacture. It has very high corrosion resistance but in not very strong and cannot be heat treated. All of the "300-series" stainless steels share this characteristic.

I didn't mean to imply that 18-8 was used for guns, I was just giving an example of a type of stainless steel. My steel handbooks are at the office and I was going from memory.

Generally, a steel is considered an "alloy" when manganese content exceeds 1.65%, silicon greater than 0.5%, copper above 0.6%, or other elements such as chromium, nickel, molybdenum, or tungsten are present.
 
Top