Unusual Mark II laminated Target grips

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kean57

Bearcat
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I recently picked up an unusual set of Ruger Mark II laminated Target grips with thumb-rest. These came in a package marked "Target Sports Custom Pistol Parts;" the label indicates they are "RUGBLACK MKII BLACK LAMINATE TGT CHECKERED WOOD GRIP W/FR GRIPW RUG." The style and manufacture seem to be identical to early Mark II laminated thumb-rest grips (as found on early manufacture Mark II Competition Target Models) with the exception of using a combination of black and tan/brown layers in the laminate, and having no factory medallion in the right-hand grip. I installed these on a KMK512GC. I've never seen this exact grip before. Any info someone might have about these grips would be greatly appreciated.
 

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contender

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Well, my first thought would be "aftermarket" grips.

Ruger has had a lot of different grip styles. And more than a couple of people making grips FOR them. Possibly somebody making the grips for Ruger but couldn't officially add a medallion,, or maybe a "second" etc.

But,, I'm NOT an expert on the MKII's either.
 

Uncle Howie

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Those are fairly similar to the grips on the KMK512GCUSS 2004 “Victory in Athens” MKII pistol grips.

The above-referenced pistol has a smooth right-side grip IIRC (unlike yours), and a half-checkered left-side grip IIRC (much like yours).

I agree with Contender- I think they’re aftermarket.

The lack of a Ruger emblem would be my biggest immediate clue, as to their probably being aftermarket.
 

Highstandardguy

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The package says it all: Target Sports Custom Pistol Parts. They're aftermarket but really nice looking grips.
 

kean57

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I am/have been aware that these grips are aftermarket (meaning they are not branded with a Ruger medallion). However, comparing the very specific dimensions, design details, etc. I believe that they were manufactured by the same company that made the early laminated Mark II grips for Ruger. I don't recall if the early ones were made by Sile Grips in Italy or not ( though some early ones supposedly have "Made in Italy" stamped inside one of the grip panels). I currently have five sets of the early Mark II laminated thumb-rest grips ( such as would have been found on the early "218-" prefix Mark II Competition Target Models) that I have installed on various Mark IIs in my collection. As you know, they are different in design and manufacture from the later Mark II laminated thumb-rest grips, which I believe were manufactured by Lett Grips.
 

kean57

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Those are fairly similar to the grips on the KMK512GCUSS 2004 “Victory in Athens” MKII pistol grips.

The above-referenced pistol has a smooth right-side grip IIRC (unlike yours), and a half-checkered left-side grip IIRC (much like yours).

I agree with Contender- I think they’re aftermarket.

The lack of a Ruger emblem would be my biggest immediate clue, as to their probably being aftermarket.
Hi Uncle Howie! That was a good observation on your part; however, I own a KMK512GCUSS, and comparing those grips to these, there are major differences in design and manufacture, as well as coloration. The grips on the KMK512GCUSS are much darker ( basically solid black) and match the pattern of laminated thumb-rest grips on later Mark IIs. They were manufactured by Lett Grips. These grips match (in design and manufacture) those found on the early "218-" prefix Ruger Competition Target Model pistols. There have been indications from some sources that those early laminated Target grips were made in Italy ( some were supposedly stamped "Made in Italy" inside one of the grip panels) but the five sets that I own have no markings. They are different enough from the later Mark II Target grips that I do not believe they were manufactured by Lett. Someone has suggested they might have been manufactured by Sile Grips (and I believe Sile Grips were manufactured in Italy) but no seems to know definitively.
 

kean57

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Those are fairly similar to the grips on the KMK512GCUSS 2004 “Victory in Athens” MKII pistol grips.

The above-referenced pistol has a smooth right-side grip IIRC (unlike yours), and a half-checkered left-side grip IIRC (much like yours).

I agree with Contender- I think they’re aftermarket.

The lack of a Ruger emblem would be my biggest immediate clue, as to their probably being aftermarket.
Actually, the right-side grip panel on the KMK512GCUSS is fully checkered; you are correct that the left-side panel is half-checkered.
I am more and more convinced that these grips were made by Sile in Italy ( who also manufactured the early laminated grips used on the "218-" prefix Competition Target Model pistols).
 

Jlmerie

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I have had this MKII for a long time. About 20 years ago I bought this pair of grips. Hopefully this might help a little. If it looks confusing, at first, the grips and I are both left handed. On the back of the original package it describes the NPT grips as "Checkered Walnut panels with left thumb rest for MKII pistols". As stated, these are LNPT for Left NPT.
 

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kean57

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I have had this MKII for a long time. About 20 years ago I bought this pair of grips. Hopefully this might help a little. If it looks confusing, at first, the grips and I are both left handed. On the back of the original package it describes the NPT grips as "Checkered Walnut panels with left thumb rest for MKII pistols". As stated, these are LNPT for Left NPT.
 

kean57

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Jlmerie,
Your grips are the later-style Mark II laminated thumb-rest grips. They were manufactured by Lett Grips here in the U.S. for Ruger. The earlier-style laminated thumb-rest grips, as found on the early "218-" prefix Ruger Competition Target models, were designed like the grips in my photographs, except for the coloration of the laminate layers. They are my favorite design, even though the differences from the later-style are subtle. I believe they were made by Sile in Italy.
 

Highstandardguy

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They do seem to be identical to the original grips on my 218 prefix Competition Target Model except for color and medallion. Note the same cut out for the bolt release and radiused screw holes, but nothing stamped on the back. I do seem to remember that there were pictures of some early ones having Made in Italy stamped on the back, possibly relating to the KMK514. I think they were called desert camo???

LLwq4AXl.jpg


npwpt9sl.jpg
 

kean57

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Akron, Ohio, United States
Highstandardguy,
Yes! Here's a pic from Chad Hiddleson's Encyclopedia of Ruger Semi-Automatic Rimfire pistols 1949-1992:
 

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when Sile was having them made in italy years ago, they were primarily walnut, and there would be a "Sile" medallion in the one panel just the same size as the Ruger one. We have seen, had, used ,bought and sold many .many pairs of them and when they were closing them out, the black eagle medallion grips were like $5-6 a pair!! We bought quite a few just for the black eagle medallion, and you only got ONE!:cool::rolleyes:;)
 

kean57

Bearcat
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Akron, Ohio, United States
They do seem to be identical to the original grips on my 218 prefix Competition Target Model except for color and medallion. Note the same cut out for the bolt release and radiused screw holes, but nothing stamped on the back. I do seem to remember that there were pictures of some early ones having Made in Italy stamped on the back, possibly relating to the KMK514. I think they were called desert camo???

LLwq4AXl.jpg


npwpt9sl.jpg
THOSE grips, from the early 218 prefix Competition Target Model, are described as "Desert Camo Laminated" according to Hiddleson's book.
 
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