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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have really never been able to afford "nice" firearms. The old adage about saving up is a fallacy. Something always comes up to take away your savings. Don't think I ever paid much over $300 for anything, most were well under the $300 mark. As I near retirement, things are getting paid for, there is a little more disposable income. I wanted to upgrade. I have always liked Rugers. My token Ruger was a MKII. Still have it, and am very fond of it. I decided to trade (actually sold on consignment for store credit) my old and replace them with Rugers. Let's look at some direct replacements and see how I did.

Heritage Rough Rider vs Ruger Bearcat. The Ruger Bearcat all the way! My Rough Rider was the 3" birds head grip with convertable cylinders. The Bearcat is the standard 4" model in stainless. I do like the shorter barrel and the birds head grip though, wish I had bought the Shopkeeper version of the Bearcat, but overall, I am happy.

Heritage Rough Rider vs Ruger Single Six Convertable. I had the steel framed Rough Rider with the 6.5" barrel and Millet adjustable fiber optic sights. I replaced it with the Ruger 5.5" stainless. This is a tough one. I didn't gain much here but a name change. Both pistols have interchangeable cylinders, mag and long rifle. Both are equally accurate. I had to change out the sights on the Ruger to fiber optic, just because I liked the fiber optics. So I have some $200 more in a pistol that is really no better than the one it replaced.

Heritage Rough Rider Big Bore vs Ruger Super Blackhawk. The Ruger hands down. I had the 45 Colt Rough Rider with the 4 3/4" barrel. They are basically Piettas that are assembled by Rough Rider. Mine was accurate with a good trigger that worked well with deliberate slow fire. It did have a problem with timing, an issue that was supposedly fixed. Locked up tight as a bank vault when cocked after the fix, but with the hammer at rest you could turn the cylinder by hand a fraction of an inch before it locked. My SBH is stainless (notice a pattern here?) With the 4.62" barrel. The proverbial tank. Very happy with this trade up!

Charter Arms Target Pathfinder vs Ruger SP101 22 LR. The SP101 definitely wins in the looks department, but that's about it. The CA had the better single action trigger, both had horrendous double action triggers. The Ruger has better sights, sights on the CA are not replaceable. I had to change out the grips on the Ruger, shot the CA as is, it was very comfortable to hold. Actually a bit more comfortable than the Ruger with it's Hogue grips. Both are equally accurate. Again, I don't think I gained much for the extra money.

Charter Arms Undercover vs Ruger LCRX. Another wash. They both perform the same functions equally well. The Ruger has the better sights, but I did change them out. Fiber optic again. The DA pull on the Ruger is better but the SA trigger is better on the CA.

Charter Arms vs Ruger GP100 44 special. The Ruger hands down. Better sights, and just more substantial. Never had any problems with the CA, but just shooting, the Ruger just has that " I am not going to shoot apart" feel. The CA had the " made to be carried a lot, shot a little" feel

Rock Island Armory 1911 FS GI vs Ruger SR1911. The SR1911 hands down. The RIA would of last me a lifetime and it reminded me of the 1911 that Uncle Sam issued me in the Corps. Loose and reliable, accurate enough. The SR1911 though surpasses it in every way. Better sights, better trigger, tighter tolerances, and it came standard with everything I wanted to do to my RIA. The Ruger is much more accurate to boot.

Marlin Model 60 vs Ruger 10/22. I am giving this to the Ruger, but just barely. And just for personal reasons. I an not a real fan of tubular magazines on a 22, and the model 60 stock just does not fit me. It works well with a scope for me, but I just can't use the iron sights, can't get down on them. The stainless and laminate Model 60 is a looker though, and I like that the bolt stays open on the last round. The 10/22 fits me like a glove, and I like the detachable magazine. Just wish I would of bought the target version. BX trigger, .920 barrel, and a new stock on the way, never had an inclination to modify the Model 60.

Spanish FR8 vs Ruger Gunsite Ranch. This is probably the toughest one for me to call. But I am giving it to the Ruger. Just because of modern convience. The Ruger has good sights, but really no better than the FR8. The Ruger will accept a scope, although I have never mounted one on mine. But the Ruger does not feed near as good as the FR8. Maybe the Ruger Hawkeye Compact Laminate would have been a better fit. Still, Rugers claim that the RGS is the one rifle to own if you could only own one is not far off the mark. I wish the Ruger had a fixed floor plate. FWIW, I did not trade off the FR8.

There you have it. Curious as to your thoughts.
 

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AKA Rawhidekid!
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I have had Heritage in the past, the build quality is no comparison to Ruger. My first handgun at age 10 was a Ruger Bearcat. Have owned several Rugers' and still have my Blackhawk three screw 45 Colt. I think your feelings toward the Rugers' will improve with use.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My feelings toward Ruger is solid. Ruger is hands down my favorite firearms manufacturer. I do think they make quality.

My post was meant to be along the lines of function.

Example: the Ruger SR1911 vs the RIA 1911 FS GI model. The RIA was a very good handgun for me. Lots of rounds through it with very little trouble. It functioned every bit as good as the Ruger, but if you shot them side by side you could tell a difference. Plus the Ruger is a little bit more for me to leave my heirs. Functionally the RIA was just as good though.
 

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^^^ I think that the "feeling" of quality is part of what makes something good to own. That RIA was good enough for you, but the Ruger is better. I think it's always a nice feeling to have something you're sure you won't have to upgrade.
 

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Interesting thread. I agree more money doesn't always mean a better gun or better quality. Sometimes it does and the Heritage is for me the prime example of that. I have two of them in 22lr and they don't impress me at all. LOL But for under $160 each I wasn't expecting much either.
I have to say my Charter BullDog 44 special is a winner for me. I haven't shot the Ruger 44 spl but I can't imagine for the price difference I would throw out my Charter for the Ruger. My 44spl is for SD carry only so looks don't matter to me either. Not saying the Charter is ugly because I don't feel that way about it.
Personally my inexpensive Charter has not been a let down for me in. It is my main everyday carry.
 
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AKA Rawhidekid!
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I had the RIA in both 38 Super and 9mm. The Super was the better of the two, the 9mm had feeding issues with hollow points. The Super really launched the empty cases. Got tired of chasing them down.
 

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Good reviews and I can identify with you. I'm closing in on retirement age and thinking about what I will leave behind. I bought my new MKIII 22/45 for just that reason.
Your review has made me wonder if I shouldn't look at Charter Arms a little more closely though.
 

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Some interesting thoughts here. I like my Heritage for the price, but would like to move up to a Single Six some day. Regarding the 10/22, I have the takedown model in stainless, and love it.
 

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Interesting thread. I agree more money doesn't always mean a better gun or better quality. Sometimes it does and the Heritage is for me the prime example of that. I have two of them in 22lr and they don't impress me at all. LOL But for under $160 each I wasn't expecting much either.
I have to say my Charter BullDog 44 special is a winner for me. I haven't shot the Ruger 44 spl but I can't imagine for the price difference I would throw out my Charter for the Ruger. My 44spl is for SD carry only so looks don't matter to me either. Not saying the Charter is ugly because I don't feel that way about it.
Personally my inexpensive Charter has not been a let down for me in. It is my main everyday carry.
I have passed up buying a Charter, in .44 Special, a couple of times. I didn't pass them up because of the gun, but because of the cost of the ammo. I was shocked when I saw how much .44 Special was.
 
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