Articles from Editor

  1. The plinker went to war: The IDF's Ruger 10/22

    Ever since their beginnings in 1948, the Israeli Defense Force has had to think outside the box to come up with weapon's systems, therefore it shouldn't surprise you that for the past 20 years the Israelis have used a (much-modified) 10/22 for use in both special operations and in security operations. (A gently modded 10/22 with IDF forces in 2000) The background Going back to 1987, the IDF purchased a quantity of Ruger 10/22s for use by security forces in the Palestinian Intifada, a...
  2. Ruger's budget falling block: The No. 3 rifle

    Made for just a baker's dozen of years across the 1970s and 80s, the Ruger No.3 is a little-known but often loved single shot rifle made in a host of interesting calibers-- if you can find one. No. 1 origins In 1967, Bill Ruger was steadily expanding his growing company into a number of different ventures. One of these, he decided, would be a single-shot rifle based on a classic design that harkened to the old 'great white hunters' of yesteryear. Rugged sportsmen like Frank Selous and WDM...
  3. Ruger pulls SHOT Show surprise with Switcheroo Buckaroo and M1 Carbine 22

    Sturm, Ruger has been hot and heavy in the past few weeks with debuting their new American pistol, a green update to their 22/45 LITE line, a 5.5-pound Ruger 10/22 Takedown rifle and of course, their first in-house suppressor design, the Silent-SR. Well just when you thought you had seen it all from this American firearms giant, they kicked off two additional guns just in time for this year's annual Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade show. The Switcheroo Buckaroo As first reported by...
  4. The Super Silent Super Secret Ruger Redhawk Rifle

    Back in the early 1990s C. Reed Knight Jr.'s Knight's Armament Co (KAC) of Vero Beach, Florida responded to a shadowy call from a government agency as yet unnamed to produce a small and short ranged but devastating suppressed rifle. Their answer was a unique weapon based upon a Ruger Super Red Hawk. What was it? The story goes that KAC built the gun on spec to provide a weapon capable of making effective anti-personnel shots at ranges of up to 100-yards, while being capable of a rapid...
  5. Going International: Ruger's ode to Mannlicher

    Since 1966 Strum, Ruger has made a number of their rifle designs with a full-length stock that harkened back to the days of Imperial Germany and Austria. These guns, the International series, have an interesting back-story and provide collectors with a good shooting rifle that also attracts immediate attention. Where did the design come from? In 1889, Paul Mauser was revamping his Model 71/84 bolt-action rifle, in an attempt to gain some more overseas contracts. One of his guns, a short...
  6. Ruger Model 96: Let your Lever gun roll

    Sure, the Model 10/22 is one of the best rimfire shooters in the world, and everyone loves its fast handling semi-automatic action, but there is just something interesting about a modern lever-action rifle. With that being said, Sturm Ruger nearly twenty years ago begat the Model 96. Why? Lever action or cowboy action carbines and rifles debuted in the mid-19th Century. A favorite of homesteaders, cavalrymen, and those law enforcement of the day, these guns were the fastest firing long...
  7. The Ruger Woodside, an elegant shotgun for a simpler time

    Bill Ruger decided to bring back an over-and-under double-barreled shotgun to the U.S. in the 1970s and his design, the Red Label was popular leading to an even spiffier Gold Label spin off. As a brief split from this family tree of Ruger trap guns came the beautiful and short-lived Woodside. Origins When Browning introduced their Superposed shotgun in 1928, the American public started to fall in love with the concept of a well-made, good shooting, and utterly reliable stacked barrel...
  8. The short-lived Ruger Gold Label SXS

    Just after the turn of the century, Sturm, Ruger made an effort to produce a light side-by-side 12-gauge shotgun that could compete with what was coming out of Belgium, Spain, and Japan. This double-barreled beauty, dubbed the Gold Label, was a brief but now beloved classic. Red Label predecessors Back in the 1970s, Bill Ruger introduced a honey of an American-made over and under (O/U) shotgun by drawing inspiration from Browning's Superimposed and Winchester Model 21 (which had moved to...
  9. Ruger's rifle that never was-- the hard hitting XGI

    With a decade of fast Mini-14 sales behind them, Ruger decided to up-gun that .223 rifle to a much more impressive .308 caliber around 1984. The result was the XGI rifle and they are about as rare as it gets. Why the XGI? In the mid-1980s, Ruger was planning a reinvention of the company to include police and military products. They marketed the AC556, the GB-series Mini, and introduced the P-85 pistol all aimed at law enforcement sales. Many police departments were adopting the '14 for...
  10. Government issue Ruger plinkers

    Between 1956 and 1986, the U.S. military ordered some 23,000 rimfire semi-auto Mark I and Mark II pistols direct from the company for the use of service marksmanship teams. There is a lot of misinformation out there on these but here is what we know about these collectables. The Mark I Bill Ruger produced his Ruger Standard pistol in 1949, taking lessons from the Japanese Nambu and the Hi Standard .22. His neat little $37 pistol with its 9-shot magazine and 4.75-inch barrel turned out to...
  11. The classic Ruger Model 44 Carbine: A 10/22 times two!

    Now out of production for going on thirty years, the Model 44 carbine, named easily enough because of its chambering in the beastly .44-magnum caliber, was a vintage rifle from another time that we wish Ruger would revisit. (Photo by AR15.com) Background In 1964, Bill Ruger came out with his instant classic 10/22 rifle. Now in its 50th year of solid and continuous production, that innovative .22LR rimfire carbine actually was a rehash of a gun that had come out three years before, the...
  12. Ruger's Wheelgun that wasn't: The single shot .256 Hawkeye

    Want a giant handgun that shoots a supped up small caliber, super high-velocity round and has a funky loading process that you likely haven't seen before? Well you sound like a Ruger Hawkeye pistol man. (Tell me what you notice about the cylinder of this handgun...) What in the world is the .256? Introduced in 1960 after some wildcat development by Winchester (with some input from Bill Ruger's people), the .256 Winchester Magnum round took Elmer Keith's vaunted .357 S&W Magnum, which...
  13. Ruger's black powder hog leg: The Old Army

    Most firearms companies specialize in either black powder guns, or modern smokeless powder guns. A notable example of one that dallies in both ponds is Sturm, Ruger, who have long-produced a black powder version of their M77 bolt action rifle (the 77/50) as well as an excellent reboot of a Union Army service revolver from the Civil War period-- the Old Army. The author's 1998-vintage Ruger Old Army in .457BP with 7.75-inch barrel. The gun is a massive three-pounder that is almost 14-inches...
  14. The Baby Nambu and its importance to Ruger

    The company that we know and love today as Sturm, Ruger got its start in a way from a certain Kijiro Nambu, who, in a twist of fate, was a Lieutenant General in the Imperial Japanese Army. Would you like to know more? Who was Nambu? (Seems real fun at parties) Kijiro Nambu, born September 22, 1869 in Saga prefecture to a former samurai retainer of the Nabeshima clan, went off to the Imperial Army Academy at a young age. By 1897 Nambu was an Artillery Lieutenant assigned to the Tokyo...
  15. The 'carry Colt': Ruger's brief flirtation with the 4 inch Redhawk .45LC

    A decade ago, Sturm, Ruger put its .45 Long Colt chambering of their vaunted Redhawk double action revolver on hiatus and only this year brought it back-- well that is true, except for a brief run of standard service sized wheel guns. Redhawk background Introduced in 1979, the Redhawk built on Bill Ruger's proven Security Six and Single Six, popular military and police style revolvers with standard 4-inch barrels chambered in .38/.357, but supersized them to come in .41 and above. These...
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