Ruger Old Army Range Report

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Hi :)

Recently I purchased a Ruger Old Army in stainless steel with 7.5” barrel and adjustable sights from a member here. I’ve shot it twice so far and today had the second outing:
54E6445A-891D-4CBC-9333-BB25433FD400.jpeg

I’ve made two upgrades to the revolver since purchase. One is I changed the factory nipples over to some Track of the Wolf stainless ones designed to take CCI #11s, of which I have a great deal. These nipples work great. The factory ones didn’t work too well with those caps and they came off pretty easily. The second upgrade was switching to rubber Pachmayr Presentation target grips. The factory wood grips work great, but the Ruger is a large and front heavy pistol and they felt small and a bit slippery in my hands. The Pachmayrs are uglier, but the grippy texture and larger size offers great control and absorbs recoil nicely.
FC2E283B-23E7-4AC3-8D4B-744CFDC1BBC3.jpeg

I fired at 15 yards and with the rear sight dialed all the way down, the revolver put two cylinders into a roughly 2” group a couple inches above point of aim. Next I set the target at 20 yards and after gathering my bearings and focusing, managed to put 12 shots into a 2.5” group. I had two definite flyers. The POI was a bit higher still so I will need to obtain a taller front sight for the gun. Groups and load date follow:
A24C57A8-EA64-4C12-8F86-2433A3B26FB9.jpeg

I fired 35 rounds with no misfires except on the last cylinder, where a couple light strikes happened. I believe this was due to the nipples becoming dirty from firing and cushioning the hammer fall. I always press down the caps with a stick but the nipples were really filthy. These groups were pretty decent considering I was firing off the back of my sedan. I think with more load development and practice on my part the Ruger will make for an excellent shooter. I am pleased with the revolver and it is very pleasant to shoot.

Thanks!

-Smokey
 

ghostdncr

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My dad was a huge fan of ROA's, and for good reason. I'd love to run across one at a bargain price. I'll bet the Pachmayr grip really helps with accuracy.
 

BullRunBear

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Nice shooting for a second outing. One of the benefits of the ROA is the way it makes my marksmanship look better than usual. ;)

Never thought of putting Pachmayr grips on the ROA but I was always comfortable with the original grips. Since the Ruger was never intended to be period correct, rubber grips that help accuracy are just the ticket. I do think a set of fake ivory grips would look great on my blued ROAs. (Makes note to self to investigate and start saving pennies.)

Jeff
 

Dude

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I've heard of guys shooting milk jugs at 100 or 200 yards with the ROA. Wonder if you'd have to aim high, or right-on, at that distance?
 

Spartan64

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I've heard of guys shooting milk jugs at 100 or 200 yards with the ROA. Wonder if you'd have to aim high, or right-on, at that distance?
My pop has an ROA with fixed sights. not sure of the barrel length but it's around 7in. Standing at 100yds (NRA Military Target) you need to aim at the top ring of the target, with 25gr target loads that will get you groups under 4in. Full-power loads open up to 8in, but you can aim dead on. Not quite a milk jug, but I imagine aiming at the spout with a 25=30gr load in an ROA would get you consistent hits at 100yds.
 

M. De Land

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Hi :)

Recently I purchased a Ruger Old Army in stainless steel with 7.5” barrel and adjustable sights from a member here. I’ve shot it twice so far and today had the second outing:
View attachment 98561
I’ve made two upgrades to the revolver since purchase. One is I changed the factory nipples over to some Track of the Wolf stainless ones designed to take CCI #11s, of which I have a great deal. These nipples work great. The factory ones didn’t work too well with those caps and they came off pretty easily. The second upgrade was switching to rubber Pachmayr Presentation target grips. The factory wood grips work great, but the Ruger is a large and front heavy pistol and they felt small and a bit slippery in my hands. The Pachmayrs are uglier, but the grippy texture and larger size offers great control and absorbs recoil nicely.
View attachment 98560
I fired at 15 yards and with the rear sight dialed all the way down, the revolver put two cylinders into a roughly 2” group a couple inches above point of aim. Next I set the target at 20 yards and after gathering my bearings and focusing, managed to put 12 shots into a 2.5” group. I had two definite flyers. The POI was a bit higher still so I will need to obtain a taller front sight for the gun. Groups and load date follow:
View attachment 98562
I fired 35 rounds with no misfires except on the last cylinder, where a couple light strikes happened. I believe this was due to the nipples becoming dirty from firing and cushioning the hammer fall. I always press down the caps with a stick but the nipples were really filthy. These groups were pretty decent considering I was firing off the back of my sedan. I think with more load development and practice on my part the Ruger will make for an excellent shooter. I am pleased with the revolver and it is very pleasant to shoot.

Thanks!

-Smokey
With some further testing you may want to isolate the chambers that are most accurate from the factory. Usually with a bit of load development, tuning and barrel lapping you can make a proverbial tac driver out of them although they are usually pretty accurate right out of the box with full power loads.
The four major accuracy enhancements I'm aware of is chamber alignment with the barrel, chamber mouth uniformity, forcing cone concentric and bore diameter consistency.
 

ZUG

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I have two ROA - one blue and one stainless steel - love them both. As Smokey says the Pachmayr grips do help but they are sure ugly. I tried them and returned to the original grips for the looks. If I shot in pistol matches then I most likely would use the Pachmayr grips :thumb:
 

D. Buck Stopshere

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You might consider a reduced load, say 20 grains 3 FG black powder, coupled with a cream of wheat filler to place the ball just below the face of the cylinder, then grease on top to soften the fouling in the barrel.

If you are going to invest in a taller front sight, have a competent gunsmith install a tall Patridge (not Partridge) front sight that can be filed down to suit your target distance. The Patridge front sight has a undercut backside on the sight that will form its own shadow, so the rear & front sight are "black on black".

Some folks are driven by max velocity and max energy, and some of us are interested in winning matches or finding the best accuracy out there with a revolver. One-hand hold, 25 yards, 18 grains GOEX 3 FG black powder, cream of wheat filler, .457 RB, T/C Bore Butter. NMLRA National Matches 1997. Ten shots in 30 minutes with 75 competitors three feet apart shooting at the same distance at the same time.
 

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William Lincoln

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It depends upon what you want from the Revolver. As a back-up hunting medium to
big game your accuracy is sufficient. For defensive use it is fine. But for competition you
will need to work on your sights. ROA s are famously charge sensitive for accuracy.
Try 20 grains as D.Buck says above--or 25 grains. Check out duelist's ROA six part
series on ROA performance on Youtube.
 

Boston Bill

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I saw another thread on the Pachmayr grips for the ROA. I installed 1 on my ROA. I actually can group on the paper target now instead of spraying the target. Not as pretty as the factory grips but I am getting used to them. I also have a tendency for the trigger guard to rap my knuckle when shooting revolvers and with the Pachmayr grips, it"s like shooting a different gun. Finally getting the performance out of it that I knew it was capable of.
 

William Lincoln

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Great results considering the fact you are a recent owner.
I owned several in the past, but sold them. Would like
another but prices went sky high. Be great if they would
re-introduce the ROA again.
 

M. De Land

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Hi :)

Recently I purchased a Ruger Old Army in stainless steel with 7.5” barrel and adjustable sights from a member here. I’ve shot it twice so far and today had the second outing:
View attachment 98561
I’ve made two upgrades to the revolver since purchase. One is I changed the factory nipples over to some Track of the Wolf stainless ones designed to take CCI #11s, of which I have a great deal. These nipples work great. The factory ones didn’t work too well with those caps and they came off pretty easily. The second upgrade was switching to rubber Pachmayr Presentation target grips. The factory wood grips work great, but the Ruger is a large and front heavy pistol and they felt small and a bit slippery in my hands. The Pachmayrs are uglier, but the grippy texture and larger size offers great control and absorbs recoil nicely.
View attachment 98560
I fired at 15 yards and with the rear sight dialed all the way down, the revolver put two cylinders into a roughly 2” group a couple inches above point of aim. Next I set the target at 20 yards and after gathering my bearings and focusing, managed to put 12 shots into a 2.5” group. I had two definite flyers. The POI was a bit higher still so I will need to obtain a taller front sight for the gun. Groups and load date follow:
View attachment 98562
I fired 35 rounds with no misfires except on the last cylinder, where a couple light strikes happened. I believe this was due to the nipples becoming dirty from firing and cushioning the hammer fall. I always press down the caps with a stick but the nipples were really filthy. These groups were pretty decent considering I was firing off the back of my sedan. I think with more load development and practice on my part the Ruger will make for an excellent shooter. I am pleased with the revolver and it is very pleasant to shoot.

Thanks!

-Smokey
I'd bet getting one in a Ransom rest with a proven load would be an eye opener!
 
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