Super Bisley 45 Colt, would you like to have it?

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Don Lovel

Hunter
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After owning a 71/2" Bisley for many years, shooting alot of 300gr +p the only change I would make is a 5 1/2" barrel is better balanced.
At some point recoil becomes too intense for not that much more power and accuracy suffers.
335gr LFN at 1000+fps is a handful I usually only shoot in my Rossi lever
 

contender

Ruger Guru
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Sep 18, 2002
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Lake Lure NC USA
"However, I do believe getting the front sight aligned should be part of the basic QC regimen.'

Re-read my post. They have "gun parts assemblers." and if the gun goes together, AND is within specs,, it goes down the line. Your expectations are likely higher than the "accepted specifications."

So, when one is not quite right, a call to them will get it fixed, if it's not "right."

Remember,, if you over torque a barrel to the frame,, you get "barrel constriction". And if you don't get it tight enough, it'll loosen up. It's a matter of the fact that to properly clock or time a barrel, it requires a specific torque,, AND the barrel MUST be in a specific location to allow it to fall within the specs. If they torque one,, and it's "within specs, out it goes. Many "casual" shooters will never catch the minor "off" position.

And I too enjoy the fine quality of the FA's,, but I too have a deep & ingrained affection for Ruger handguns.
Remember,, it's all about "production" and meeting THOSE demands. Stockholders do not like investing in stock & not seeing a return. And the best way to get a return is to reduce expenses, and increase production.
I spoke with a few senior executives a few years back about QC. They have an "expected percentage" of returned models that need a little extra attention.

As for attaching the front sight AFTER the gun is assembled sounds good, until you look at the fact the sights are added, (silver soldered on) and THEN blued prior to assy.

I too wish we could return to the days where guns were built by REAL gun people or gunsmiths. But, in todays era of production demands, we won't see that again at Ruger. And I'll add this;
If you think you can do the job properly, AND meet production demands,, then by all means, go apply for a job with them. You can become the person who properly assembles them.
 
Joined
Dec 5, 2011
Messages
544
Location
FL
Remember,, if you over torque a barrel to the frame,, you get "barrel constriction". And if you don't get it tight enough, it'll loosen up. It's a matter of the fact that to properly clock or time a barrel, it requires a specific torque,, AND the barrel MUST be in a specific location to allow it to fall within the specs. If they torque one,, and it's "within specs, out it goes. Many "casual" shooters will never catch the minor "off" position.

I don't think anyone disagrees about proper barrel torque, esp based on what you're describing. I think it's in context with the front sight being clocked to the 12 o'clock position (as least that's what I mean). If they'd install the front sight after the barrel is properly torqued and use a jig to ensure it's on straight, then I'd be happy. This does not seem to happen. If I only owned on Ruger revolver, then okay, yeah I'd send it back. If it was just bought new, then Ruger might pay shipping. But sometimes these are bought used and then we have to pay to ship it back. I think they go next-day about $75 each way. Some of us have a dozen or more Ruger revolvers and at least half to 3/4 of mine would benefit from front sight alignment.
 

contender

Ruger Guru
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Lake Lure NC USA
The front sights are soldered on. THEN they are blued. Not easy to install the barrel, clock it, align the sight, then blue it.
Most custom gun builders will screw on a barrel, and know about where it needs to "stop" prior to torqueing. Then they apply the torque and if it's off, they have to remove it all, and start over. That may require the CAREFUL chucking of the barrel in a lathe, cutting a fraction off, and then trying to re-install it.
All this takes TIME, and Time is MONEY. That's why FA and custom builders charge the prices they do.

Again, at Ruger, we have parts assemblers,, NOT gunsmiths.

To apply the sights AFTER assembly won't work in the manufacturing methods used.

If you could go & see HOW the guns are built,, you'd understand WHY they occasionally have a few that are off a little.
Between correct heat treatment of the metal, the blueing, and the assembly process, it's not as "easy" as you make it appear.

BUT,, due to this type of issue,, AND to reduce expenses, they are making some changes in some models. We are seeing a "barrel" without sights, screwed in & torqued. THEN, a "shroud" is applied OVER the barrel. (It's already in the DA line.) It's easier to correct a shroud than it is a complete barrel assy. But of course,, then people will complain about a "shrouded barrel" or say it's not a strong, or whatever. (Dan Wesson proved this was a good method for many guns. But not ALL calibers.)
 
Joined
Oct 20, 2022
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Location
Oregon
"However, I do believe getting the front sight aligned should be part of the basic QC regimen.'

Re-read my post. They have "gun parts assemblers." and if the gun goes together, AND is within specs,, it goes down the line. Your expectations are likely higher than the "accepted specifications."

So, when one is not quite right, a call to them will get it fixed, if it's not "right."

Remember,, if you over torque a barrel to the frame,, you get "barrel constriction". And if you don't get it tight enough, it'll loosen up. It's a matter of the fact that to properly clock or time a barrel, it requires a specific torque,, AND the barrel MUST be in a specific location to allow it to fall within the specs. If they torque one,, and it's "within specs, out it goes. Many "casual" shooters will never catch the minor "off" position.

And I too enjoy the fine quality of the FA's,, but I too have a deep & ingrained affection for Ruger handguns.
Remember,, it's all about "production" and meeting THOSE demands. Stockholders do not like investing in stock & not seeing a return. And the best way to get a return is to reduce expenses, and increase production.
I spoke with a few senior executives a few years back about QC. They have an "expected percentage" of returned models that need a little extra attention.

As for attaching the front sight AFTER the gun is assembled sounds good, until you look at the fact the sights are added, (silver soldered on) and THEN blued prior to assy.

I too wish we could return to the days where guns were built by REAL gun people or gunsmiths. But, in todays era of production demands, we won't see that again at Ruger. And I'll add this;
If you think you can do the job properly, AND meet production demands,, then by all means, go apply for a job with them. You can become the person who properly assembles them.
I did understand what you are saying. I agree fully with the "assembler vs Smith". But I believe that with today's technology, reaching target torque at a certain clocking should be relatively easy, maintaining proper sight alignment. Honestly, I really have only seen this issue on Ruger single actions. The Vaquero I'm speaking of cost $1000 new- that's not a cheap gun. Maybe I'm wrong in my way of thinking. Or maybe the allowable tolerances need to be rethought. With Ruger's current focus on quality with the Marlin line, it seems logical (hopefully) that it will carry that over to their single actions.

You know how you get perfection? You expect it and settle for nothing less.

Also- as a former parts and service manager for Ford, and Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep- I understand allowing a certain percentage of warranty issues helps the bottom line- but it kills customer satisfaction. A firearm isn't a "necessity" like a commuter vehicle. You might accept a certain lack of attention in your daily driver. But purchasing a firearm is like a hot rod- it needs to be right, period.

I just re-read what I wrote, and I'm hoping it didn't come off as being argumentative. I know what you posted is 100% correct. I'll get off my soap box now.
 

Rclark

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Butte, MT
You know how you get perfection? You expect it and settle for nothing less.
And you pay for it too. If I want perfection, I would look to Freedom Arms, or send in my almost perfect Ruger to a well respected gunsmith that will fix it up 'right', knowing I'll pay for the privilege of getting a gun back that is close to 'perfect'. For me though, I will get an action job to get a decent trigger pull and a nice feeling action, a custom base pin because I want one, and some custom good looking grips that fit very well and call it good. On a fixed sighted revolver, I'll also have the barrel clocked as needed to get it to shoot straight. But it will cost a few hundred more dollars to get it there! So my $700 gun is now $900-$1000. For the .45 Colt, I'll also ream the throats to .4525 myself if needed and set the forcing cone to 11 degrees. Of course I had to buy the $100 tool to start with.... And bought a set of plug gauges to test the holes, and, etc.... Perfection ... costs. Rugers are 'good enough' for most people though. It's no wonder they have been called the working man's gun (affordable and shoot adequately in most cases).

As for sights, I would almost have to agree with you (Randyzzz). Seems like there should be a jig that you set the gun in, a laser checks for proper front to rear sight alignment, and get a 'go-no go' result that shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to test (in my pea brain) once jig is calibrated the first time. Now fixing it may take a bit if out of spec, but would seem cheaper to fix then, than go through process of having it returned later!
 
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contender

Ruger Guru
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Sep 18, 2002
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Lake Lure NC USA
Truly, I do understand the thoughts here. And while it SEEMS to be something they can do easily,, it's not as easy as you'd think. With the way they actually build the guns, which is NOT the old timey conventional methods, it would slow down production to do the things you describe. Again, if the assemblers put them together,, AND they fall within specs, out it goes.
As for the costs.
A new SA handgun may have a MSRP of $1000.00 yet that's NOT what Ruger makes on the gun. Often, they might get $600 or so approximately for that gun. They sell to distributors, who sell to gun shops, who sell to us. Each level has to make a profit. And even Ruger has a tier level of pricing to it's distributors.
So, to add TIME to an assembly,, it costs money. And it may cost Ruger an additional $25 to do a step, by the time it gets to retail it'll add $100 to the MSRP. DISCLAIMER!!!!!!!!THESE NUMBERS ARE JUST PULLED FROM SUPPOSITION. NOT ACTUAL NUMBERS . I JUST USED THIS TO EXPLAIN THE POINT.

RClark has it right with this statement; "Rugers are 'good enough' for most people though. It's no wonder they have been called the working man's gun (affordable and shoot adequately in most cases)."

So, while it may seem simple, again, until you see how the guns are actually built, you may not understand why your thought process doesn't fit the "lean manufacturing" methods used in Ruger plants.

I have been to a Ruger plant. I have seen how they approach building guns. It's an assembly process. They start at one point, with a worker, some parts, and that worker does ONE or maybe TWO operations of assembly. Then they pass their parts to the next station, to another worker, who does another single assy of something. This continues all down the line, until the gun is finished at the end of the assembly line. It may be handled by 20 (or more) different workers. At each station, they have jigs to check for the "go-nogo" portion of their assembly. If it passes their jig, the partially assembled gun goes to the next station. So, each gun is not assembled by a single worker, or even just a couple of workers. It's an assembly line of workers & stations.
And if a part doesn't pass the test jig at a station, it's pulled. If a few more fail, then it shuts down that line at that point & things are re-set & re-calibrated etc.
And to meet production, sometimes a part may be just barely in spec, and it gets passed on,, instead of correcting a little something. Remember,, these workers are hired to assemble parts & meet production. Many of them are not real "gun people." They hope to keep meeting production, and not cause a shut down of a line. And just like in any job anywhere in any workplace,, you will have employees who think; "It's close enough, nobody will notice it" attitude.
So, as mentioned, most of them are good enough for most people.
Heck, go to a gun range & watch the average shooter. Most of the time,, the guns shoot better than the casual trigger jerker.
And finding a mass produced gun w/o any flaws is dern near impossible. Slow, careful proper perfection building takes time & money. That's why we have places like FA & the custom builders.
FA currently has an 18 month backlog, and many custom makers 1-3 years.
At a cost much higher than the mass produced Rugers.

So, yes,, I do understand your thought process. But until you see HOW they are built, and understand the fact that bean counters who demand production numbers for the bottom line, the "simple" things you think should be done are not as simple to implement.
 
Joined
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And you pay for it too. If I want perfection, I would look to Freedom Arms, or send in my almost perfect Ruger to a well respected gunsmith that will fix it up 'right', knowing I'll pay for the privilege of getting a gun back that is close to 'perfect'. For me though, I will get an action job to get a decent trigger pull and a nice feeling action, a custom base pin because I want one, and some custom good looking grips that fit very well and call it good. On a fixed sighted revolver, I'll also have the barrel clocked as needed to get it to shoot straight. But it will cost a few hundred more dollars to get it there! So my $700 gun is now $900-$1000. For the .45 Colt, I'll also ream the throats to .4525 myself if needed and set the forcing cone to 11 degrees. Of course I had to buy the $100 tool to start with.... And bought a set of plug gauges to test the holes, and, etc.... Perfection ... costs. Rugers are 'good enough' for most people though. It's no wonder they have been called the working man's gun (affordable and shoot adequately in most cases).

As for sights, I would almost have to agree with you (Randyzzz). Seems like there should be a jig that you set the gun in, a laser checks for proper front to rear sight alignment, and get a 'go-no go' result that shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to test (in my pea brain) once jig is calibrated the first time. Now fixing it may take a bit if out of spec, but would seem cheaper to fix then, than go through process of having it returned later!
I fully understand turning a $700 gun into $1000. With the exception of my beautiful Super 3 Screw, all of my Rugers have or are getting custom grip frames from R W Gripframes and custom grips. I fit them myself. Springs, action smoothing, and getting the timing right are also done by me. I can say I easily have over $500 in improvements in each one.

I have yet to check if the local UPS center will accept a firearm shipment if the label originates from Ruger. Last one I shipped was before their new anti firearm stance. If they will, I might send the 2 offending guns back and see if they can get it right. If not, I'll probably end up waiting until Oregon gets its current background check debacle worked out and have Fermin work his magic.

I am still looking for a local 'Smith that is able to perform sight work and reblue. For those of you that are wondering about my hesitancy to ship in Oregon- here's the condensed version. Measure 114 was passed by a razor thin vote. One of the features of 114 was that a "Permit to Purchase" would be needed to initiate any background check. But- there is no class available, nor any planned to meet this requirement. Another was the removal of the "3 day release" clause. This triggered panic buying and since November, the background check backlog has been over 30,000. Supposedly the state is working on checks from the beginning of December right now. A state judge put the whole thing on hold pending trial, but the anti-gun attorney general is trying her hardest to get his ruling overruled and immediately implement 114. That would mean all gun transfers in Oregon would cease immediately for an unforeseen time- estimates go from months to years. I would hate to have my FFL ship a gun for repair only to be unable to give it back to me when repairs are completed.

Contender- yes, I understand Ruger's manufacturing process. Maybe I'm just blowing off steam at my current situation. Thank you for your explanations and patience.
 
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Onty

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 17, 2000
Messages
497
After owning a 71/2" Bisley for many years, shooting alot of 300gr +p the only change I would make is a 5 1/2" barrel is better balanced.
At some point recoil becomes too intense for not that much more power and accuracy suffers.
335gr LFN at 1000+fps is a handful I usually only shoot in my Rossi lever
Well, "shooting alot of 300gr +p" isn't something I would like to do on regular basis. I designed and friend made a mold for 45-325-SWC, 2 grease grooves:

45-325-SWC-2GG 300x476.jpg


We didn't have a chronograph, but according to reloading manuals, it should be close to 1100 fps. Revolver was 7.5" Bisley. Nevertheless, this is no plinking load by any yardstick. I could take up to dozen rounds, but after that my hands are telling me to to stop. From that experience, I set my limits; up to 320/330 grains, max 1100 fps, but from 45 cal revolver, and no more than 22 000 CUP or so. I will shoot on the range from time to time 5-6 rounds, otherwise only when needed. As for practicing on the range, up to 44-250/260, 1000-1100 fps, and from Bisley only. Any other 44 revolver, Skeeter Skelton load; 250 grains up to 900 fps.

In that respect, anything like 454 and above, thanks, but no thanks.
 

diyj98

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jan 26, 2000
Messages
262
Location
WV
but with the blackhawk in 45 LC it can be loaded to equal or pass the 44 mag
I don't want mine loaded that hot. I had a 45 Blackhawk that I used to load to magnum status with 2400, but it eventually started getting loose. Of course all guns wear more the hotter the loads, but I now leave 45 Colts in the 45 Colt range and grab a 44 magnum or 454 if I want more power.
 

Onty

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 17, 2000
Messages
497
I've seen loose just one NMBH, 357 Magnum. Revolver was quite accurate, I almost bought it, but backed off when noticed sloppiness of the cylinder. Also, that revolver had several thousand rounds, but all were handloads, more like 38 Special +P or +P+ level. That was the only one I know off. It is difficult to get NMBH Ruger loose, certainly not like earlier S&W 29/629. Apparently, fast cycling could get cylinder bolt/stop widen. Another issue is getting loose axially. The remedy is to put a drop or two of some heavier oil, like for truck manual transmission or differential, on each side of cylinder prior to shooting. Some think that STP or LUCAS oil additives are even better. IMO bit of better grease will do the same.
 

1953Standard

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 1, 2023
Messages
10
Location
Idaho Falls, Idaho
Proposing NM Super Blackhawk Bisley (or even better, Super Bisley) chambered in 45 Colt, with following characteristics:

- 5 bore, same configuration as Ruger 454 and 480 New Model Super Blackhawk Bisley
- Same steels and finish
- Barrel twist 1 in 16"
- Barrel lengths 4.62" and 6.50"

I couldn't find option for a poll (would like to put: barrel 4.62", barrel 6.50", both 4.62" and 6.50"). If one of moderators can do that, please make a poll for all 3 possibilities. Better yet, barrel 4.62" and barrel 6.50", but both options could be checked. Until then, please post only if you want this revolver, so we can see how many members here would like to have one of them, or both.

So, Onty: Super Bisley 45 Colt, barrel 6.50"

If I am not mistaken, we have here a member from Lipsey's. I wish if he can comment this proposal. I bet noted revolvers will be one of best selling on the market. Will grab one in a heartbeat..
Several years ago I had a super Blackhawk with Bisley grip in 44 Magnum with the 4.6 barrel. I love the way the Bisley grip fits my hand and I would buy the 45 Long Colt with a six and a half inch barrel, as one says, in a heartbeat.
 

budroe

Bearcat
Joined
Jul 22, 2017
Messages
8
Bought this Ruger Blackhawk Bisley .45 Colt after returning home from Croatia in 2000. It shot really well for me, but found the 7 1/2" barrel a bit awkward for me. After a couple years living in Texas, I sent it off to Dave Clements to have the barrel cut to 5 1/2" and had the gun fine tuned and customized. Its long been one of my very favorite handguns. See Mr. Clements has pretty much retired these days. Happy for him, but its too bad for Ruger owners. He was a fine artist at his profession.
 

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Joined
Dec 9, 2013
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This is my "Pet Peeve" with Ruger. Why, oh why, can't they make sure the barrel is properly clocked? More specifically, why can't they get the sight installed 100% vertical? Am I a great shot? No, but I am particular about things being right, and I can see even the slightest of tilt in the front sight. Comes from years of building custom cars, I guess. My 68 Super is perfect, my 76 .45 is perfect. And the newer Super that I had to send in to get a barrel replaced under warranty came back perfect. ( They fixed the timing too). But my newer .357 is off visibly, and my New Vaquero .45 is off a hair. The .45 shoots well, and the .357 does too with a minor adjustment to the windage out back. But it bugs me. Never mind that I spend almost $500 on each one to change out the grip frames to fit my big hands. I hate spending hard earned $$ on stuff that should be right to begin with, not to mention the inconvenience of shipping a firearm, especially nowadays in Oregon.

I saw that Taurus came out with an "Executive grade" in which pistols hand selected off the line received special fit/finish/smoothness treatment. I would humbly suggest that's what Ruger needs to institute. I'd gladly pay more for "out of the box" perfection.
I had a problem with my last Bisley SS .45 convertible. Barrel was clocked right but the base was soldered on way off. Made shooting difficult. Sent Ruger pictures and they did replace the barrel and sights, but dang. Get it right the first time. My Shopkeeper Bearcat was even worse.
Quit buying newer firearms on auction sites because of no hands on inspection.
DSC00546.JPG

DSC00547.JPG


Bearcat Shopkeeper rear sight machining. :mad:
DSC00511.JPG
 
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Joined
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My .357 Blackhawk is on its way back to Ruger for correction of the front sight angle and some burrs/bad finish work on the cylinder window. It should arrive at Ruger tomorrow. It will be interesting to see what they do and how long it takes. Once I get it back the Vaquero goes in for front sight cant and poor timing.

On the last picture you posted, it looks like the rear sight is cut a bit off center, closer to the right side? It almost looks like they cut the rear notch to compensate for the front issue…
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2013
Messages
273
My .357 Blackhawk is on its way back to Ruger for correction of the front sight angle and some burrs/bad finish work on the cylinder window. It should arrive at Ruger tomorrow. It will be interesting to see what they do and how long it takes. Once I get it back the Vaquero goes in for front sight cant and poor timing.

On the last picture you posted, it looks like the rear sight is cut a bit off center, closer to the right side? It almost looks like they cut the rear notch to compensate for the front issue…
The last picture is the Bearcat that was machined bad, Ruger replaced the whole revolver. The Bisley has adjustable rear sights.
 
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