New Model Blackhawk/New Model Super Blackhawk?


November 10, 2004, 04:14 PM
OK, what I am I misssing? What's the difference in these? I know there's a Hunter model in the Super Blackhawk but, what's the basic differences in the guns themselves?


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November 10, 2004, 04:33 PM
The Super has a different(larger)grip frame w/a corresponding different trigger guard.

November 10, 2004, 04:56 PM
That's it?

Simple enough. Thanks!

November 10, 2004, 05:56 PM
Super blackhawk comes in .44 the regular blackhawk does not.

November 10, 2004, 07:23 PM
Here's the scoop - SBH and BH are the same gun...they have the same frames, same grip frames, and are made up of the same parts...differences are as follows:

They are both built on the adjustable sighted frame. If it's a .44 Mag, Ruger calls it a SBH. If is any other caliber, say .357 Mag, they call it a BH.

Minor differences include SBH have a slightly different shape to the hammer and the trigger face is ribbed instead of smooth.

If you are smart you order the 7.5" SBH - unlike the other bbl lengths of SBH, it comes with the Dragoon gripframe (slightly longer than standard BH gripframe and square backed trigger guard).

Other words you should know:

Vaquero - Same guns as above, except with the fixed sight frame, smooth trigger, and extra high hammer spur. (Some people - not me - would call this a "cowboy gun").

Bisley - Same guns as above with differently shaped and longer gripframe, extra curved trigger, and a lower reaching hammer spur. (Some people - not me - say this is the best configuration for heavy recoiling rounds).

Hunter (SBH or Bisley) - Same guns as above, only available in stainless with nice laminated wood grips. Bbl has a solid rib down the top that allows mounting of a scope directly to the bbl.

This isn't difinitive - there is probably a lot more to know about Ruger single actions. All you have to do is ask, someone will know here what the answer is, or where you can find it. - JM.

November 10, 2004, 09:51 PM

Thank you sir! No wonder I couldn't tell much difference just by looking on their website. What's the advantage to the squared back trigger guard?

November 10, 2004, 10:03 PM
The square back cuts your finger quicker. J/J :neener:

Jim March
November 11, 2004, 01:26 AM
The Tao Of SuperBlackHawks:

If you buy a SuperBlackhawk, it's *usually* a 44Mag. Unless it's the 357Supermag, or the 41Mag/45LC variants of the SuperBlackHawk Hunter. And the 44Mag Bisley sorta "should" be called a SuperBlackHawk if Ruger was being consistent - see also the hunter section.

OK, let's look at the Hunters as their own class of weirdness:

All single action "Hunters" carry the SuperBlackHawk moniker even if they're NOT 44Mags (41Mag/45LC). Also, there's a Hunter available with the Bisley grip/trigger/hammer setup that still known as a "SuperBlackHawk". "Hunters" have a heavier barrel with integral scope rings - that's what makes it a Hunter. When Hunters don't have a Bisley grip, they have a special round-trigger-guard version of the Dragoon grip frame. This is a slightly oversized grip type that's basically a scaled-up "Plowhandle" type grip - this Hunter grip frame can take the same grip panels as the SBH "Dragoon Squareback" grip.

(My personal opinion: the hunter with Bisley is a VERY intelligent's what Ruger should have started with when they thunked up the hunter barrel. OH, and there's now a Single Six-based "Hunter" with a heavy barrel and scope rings - that's a whole 'nuther frame, 'nuther critter. WAY smaller, easy to spot :).)


If it's a SuperBlackHawk, it's a 44Mag or the short discontinued run of 5,000ish 357Maximums. Those can be identified by the stretched frame and cylinder.

The 44Mag SBHs with 4.68" or 5.5" barrels have the same size grip frame as the standard Blackhawk (the "XR3-RED" grip) but if the gun is blue, the SBH has a blue steel grip frame, the Blackhawk's is black anodized aluminum. The Blackhawk ejector rod is also black anodized aluminum; the SBH has a steel ejector rod. Always. Yet stainless steel blackhawks and superblackhawks both have the exact same stainless grip frame if the SBH barrel is 4.68" or 5.5". SBHs with 7.5" or 10" barrels always have the "Dragoon squareback" oversize grip frame, in blue steel on a blue gun, stainless on stainless guns.

Blackhawk and superblackhawk rear sights are identical. Some SBHs have a better replacable front sight where a blackhawk's front will generally be soldered down.

Superblackhawk hammers are a lower, wider piece about halfway between the Bisley hammer and standard Blackhawk hammer in terms of "reach". Many find the XR3-RED grip on the 4.68"/5.5" SBHs with the SBH hammer a very nice ergonomic combination.

Strength is NOT different. All of these guns (Hunter, Bisley, Vaq, Blackhawk) use the same strength primary frame, same strength and size cylinders, all with the same heat-treat. You can take a 357Mag stainless Blackhawk, swap to the SBR hammer, bore the cylinder up to 44Mag and swap barrel to a 4.68" or 5.5" barrel and you will have a gun absolutely identical in every way to a factory superblackhawk of the same specs - and your modified gun will be 100% as strong. Only a serial number search would spot your gun as a "frankengun" :).

November 11, 2004, 03:03 PM
Damn Jim, you're a bible of information! Thank you very much! I have an eyeball on this SBH Hunter.

Jim March
November 11, 2004, 04:05 PM
Yeah, you can make a strong case for the SBH Bisley Hunter being the single best Ruger SA factory setup made, period. Not for all tasks of course as it's heavy, but certainly a contender for "the best Ruger factory hunting setup".

November 12, 2004, 06:39 PM

Here's my "FrankenGun" many mods can you spot? In my hands, it is the ideal deer's put venison in my freezer for three years now.

Marshall - don't ask, there ain't a stock part on it, or in it.

November 12, 2004, 06:49 PM

Thank you sir! What's the advantage to the squared back trigger guard?

In my hands, it's the extra length of the Dragoon (or the SBH Hunter) gripframe that allows me to handle the recoil. (The Bisley is also longer, but it doesn't work well in my hand - lots of people say this is the best for heavy recoil - I'm not one of them.)

The only real advantage to the Dragoon trigger guard itself, is in my eyes, it has an old time class to it, always makes me think of the first powerful revlover - the Colt Dragoon. - JM.

Jim March
November 12, 2004, 07:13 PM
The squareback was cosmetic, and for a long time identified the larger plowhandle grip frame (until the Hunter came along with the larger grips but round triggerguard). I think Ruger did the squareback simply to let people rapidly ID the grip type (and prevent confused sales of aftermarket/replacement grip panels).

I think the squareback was a VERY bad idea for 44Mag-and-up class power levels. Many people found it a "knucklewhacker" but of course that depends on hand size and how you hold it.

I think that gun started life with an adjustable sight and the topstrap has been seriously "Vaqueroized"...the lines don't look quite right for a factory Vaq but I could be wrong. Don't think so though. Could have started life as a Blackhawk or SuperBlackHawk, New Model 2-screw action.

The SBH Dragoon Squareback grip frame has been rounded and re-blued. I strongly suspect the barrel has been chopped as it could have been re-blued along with the grip frame and (I'm almost certain) topstrap mods. Front sight is custom of some sort. Hammer is SBH unmodified. Ejector rod housing is probably steel as the finish is too close a match to the rest of the anodized aluminum would look "off" a bit. Ejector rod head looks stock but might be crescent, impossible to say from this angle.

Can't confirm caliber but I suspect the six shown are 45LC.

How'd I do?

November 13, 2004, 06:51 PM
Not bad at all Jim, the gun started it's life as a 7.5" Bisley-Vaquero.
You did good to notice the top-strap mod. I flattened out the top of the sight groove. This along with my homemade dovetail mounted front sight gave me the a fixed sighted single action that still allows for very precise shooting.

Yup, round butted the gripframe, slimmed and rounded the grip panels. Cut the bbl to 4.5", removed warning label, set back one thread, cut Taylor throat, dovetailed front sight, reamed chamber throats, refitted ER housing (steel) to the set back bbl.

Performed trigger job, but left the timing stock.

OMG - the ejector rod and ER spring are both stock! So is the hand, and the bolt spring (but not the bolt) Guess Ruger got those right the first time.

I load it to launch a 265gr SWC @ 1250 fps - with the gripframe mods, I find this load to be very easy to shoot well. And with the fairly standard weight bullet that I prefer, and it's easy start into the bbl via the Taylor throat, NO the slightly modified top strap has done no noticible stretching over the last 3,000 rounds.

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