New Vaquero

About five years into the new century Ruger dropped their Vaquero — which was built on the Super Blackhawk frame — and replaced it with the New Vaquero using the .357 Blackhawk 50th anniversary cylinder and frame. The originals handle heavier loads, however the downsized New Vaquero makes a more practical every day working sixgun, especially in stainless steel, and if one’s situation can be handled by standard .44 Special or .45 Colt loads.

It has long been my contention gun designers are nervous as they approach the goal of perfection often drawing back then doing something to make things less than perfect. With the New Vaquero it was the design of the hammer. They apparently tried to make it longer than normal to appeal to Cowboy Action Shooters and in the process managed to come up with a hammer that is not only harder, for me at least, to handle, but also the ugliest hammer I have ever seen on a single-action sixgun.
The Mounted Cowboy Shooting hammers and Fast Draw hammers found on special edition New Vaqueros for these two sports make more practical hammers, and that is what my .45 New Vaqueros now wear. For my .357 blued/case colored New Vaquero I turned to Ron Power for one of his Bisley-style hammers, which requires fitting, and this is also a grand improvement.