When Bob Stutler was production manager at Ruger, he once told me, “No matter what we make, someone will want something else.” How true that is; I have been guilty of this many times, and not just with Rugers. However, all hope is not lost. Some remarkable models and calibers are available today. Not from Ruger, but from one of their distributors, Lipsey’s, who not only distributes standard Ruger production items but also always looks for items they think should sell well, even if not considered “mainstream.” People who have a deep understanding of shooters manage Lipsey’s, and this extends beyond rifle shooters right to the heart of sixgunners. Thanks to Lipsey’s, sixgunners have a source for what are essentially Living Legends.
In 1955, Ruger took great step forward after their .22 offerings, opening new doors with a centerfire single action. Bill Ruger maintained the grip frame and coil spring operation of his by then-popular Single-Six, increased the size of the mainframe and cylinder to that of the Colt Single Action Army, flat-topped the frame, added excellent adjustable sights, and chambered it in the most powerful cartridge then available, the .357 Magnum. This first Blackhawk had a 45/8″ barrel and blue finish. I was still in high school and too young to purchase one, but I had a life-sized picture hanging on my wall; it was the last thing I saw every night before going to sleep and the first thing I saw each morning. By late 1956, I purchased my own.
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