Ruger's new 4" Redhawk


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ArchAngelCD
September 3, 2007, 10:14 PM
Ruger has a new 4" .44 Magnum Redhawk. I was wondering if anyone here has bought one yet or shot one yet. I'm still looking for a big bore revolver and this one looks good. I'm also wondering how it stacks up against the S&W 4" Model 629. Any input would be appreciated...
http://ruger.com/Firearms/FAProdView?model=5026&return=Y
http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=11101&storeId=10001&productId=14779&langId=-1&parent_category_rn=15706&isFirearm=Y

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shooter429
September 3, 2007, 11:11 PM
The Ruger is as good or better in several areas:

1. Strength-accepts 330-340 Grain +p+ ammunition for large or dangerous game.

2. Around 6 oz. heavier

3. The triggers on mine are comparable :what:

4: The stock grips on both guns lack backstrap coverage for comfort, but the Ruger's makes for better concealment.

But, the Ruger is much less expensive.

Since the triggers, sights and grips are now comparable and the Ruger is stronger and more verstile plus much less money, I vote for the Ruger as the better gun and much better value!

Shooter429

461
September 3, 2007, 11:18 PM
Picked mine up last week but haven't had time to shoot it yet. I find the fit and finish to be very good and the trigger is probably better than most Rugers I've handled of late. I find it hard to compare it to a 629 as they are very different even though firing the same round. The Ruger is larger and heavier and seems more solidly built. The Smith seems more refined with a smoother trigger but also seems more delicate and there's the lock issue that I just can't feel comfortable with. With any luck I'll be able to shoot the Redhawk this week and can comment on it's abilities then.

Mine was bought to be a woods carry piece, for hunting I have a Super Redhawk in the same chambering which works very well.

Mr.Revolverguy
September 3, 2007, 11:36 PM
Arch,

I have had mine for months now. Here is a range report I posted a while back.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=257870

P. Plainsman
September 4, 2007, 12:24 AM
They really do seem to have re-jiggered the trigger geometry on the 4" Redhawk to give it an improved double action pull. Makes a lot of sense in a "utility" .44 Magnum like this, which might be carried for backup against dangerous animals.

Every review of the gun I've seen reports a surprisingly light DA pull; several go on to mention that the SA trigger is surprisingly stiff - literally almost the same weight as the DA. That was exactly my experience when I handled one. Bet they've messed with the action geometry somehow. Any revolver mechanics want to weigh in on how that might work?

Jeff Quinn reported the same in his review of the revolver:

http://www.gunblast.com/Ruger-Redhawk4.htm

ArchAngelCD
September 4, 2007, 01:03 AM
My thanks for the answers so far. A special thanks to Mr.Revolverguy and P. Plainsman for the provided links.

Mr.Revolverguy,
Great report in your thread.

I await additional comments from other owners or those who have shot the Ruger, or even better, have shot both.

Stainz
September 4, 2007, 07:50 AM
The Ruger 4" RH is 5.5 oz heavier than the 4" 629 (SKU #163603). It was released long after the 29/629 with additional mass a selling point. It's no-removeable-sideplate design inspires thoughts of extra strength, even if it is cast steel rather than hammer forged and heat treated, a la the 629. The 629 was designed - and the latest versions have the latest endurance package - for standard SAAMI spec .44 Magnums. Need more oomph? Get a larger/meaner caliber!

The best thing about the S&W is the trigger, of course. The worst attribute of a Redhawk is that long DA pull, due to the one spring for hammer power, trigger return, and trigger group lock. My 5.5" .45 Colt RH was slicked up by Ruger when they did some QC repairs & replacements. Certainly, the one 4" RH I tried was no better, if even as good - but certainly nothing like my original 'rancid Redhawk' trigger was upon purchase. It is highly unlikely that Ruger would change anything in the lockwork of the RH - the run is too small. My bet is it gets a few minutes of 'tweaking' - certainly more cost-effective than changing their castings/punches.

Now prices... The MSRP for the Ruger RH is $780 - the S&W is $869. Add to that $35 for the absolute-best grips for a 629 - the backstrap padding Hoque .500 Magnum monogrips. You can only get them from S&W Accessories - or on a new .460/.500 Magnum revolver. One size fits K,L,N, & X frames. They add maybe 3/16" to the trigger pull length - but a lot of recoil absorption. My 4" & 6" 629s sport them - and both have the IL - and no problems. Here are the .500Magnum gripped 629 and my original 625MG:

http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u307/Stainz_2007/IMG_0230.jpg

I am not a RH fan - I loved my .454 SRH far more - much better stock trigger, pre or post break-in (The SRH/GP100 lockwork has a separate hammer and trigger return/group latch spring). They shortened the wrong gun. I'll keep my 629's.

4" 629Stainz

PS Comparing my SS 5.5" .45 Colt RH to my 4" 625 Mountain Gun in .45 Colt, the 625MG grouped slightly better with the same loads off sandbags at 25 yd. No commparison, trigger-wise, which probably helps the standing freehand shooting, where the S&W excelled. One screw out and the cylinder of the S&W was in my hand for cleaning, too. The 625MG sported Ahrends square conversion fg cocobolo stocks, the RH had it's original Ruger wood - which my wife preferred! In fact, loaded with 250gr GDJHP's, it was her 'house gun' (She doesn't like the 625MG!). I found a second 625MG - and sold the RH. Oddly, the cylinder wall to cylinder wall thickness measured .059" for the RH - and .062" for the S&W - not what you'd expect, that's for sure. I don't miss the RH... but I really miss that .454/.45 SRH!

P. Plainsman
September 4, 2007, 04:21 PM
I'm inclined to agree that I'd pick up a .44 Super Redhawk before a regular Redhawk; I like the SRH's action feel better, and it's more tunable. You can get a nice trigger on a Super.

I just get along well with the Ruger SP/GP/SRH two-spring lockwork. I must admit, even the sweetened DA trigger on the 4" Redhawk I tried had a bit of characteristic "stack" in the middle of the pull, because of its one-spring design. Stacking at the end of a pull isn't bad, but I dislike it in the middle.

The SRH is a very rugged and comfortable-shooting gun. I love my S&W 629 but it can get wearing with full .44 Magnum loads. What you want for the SRH is the great wraparound Hogue rubber grip that Ruger introduced for the Alaskan. Can't use it on the regular Redhawk.

Like Stainz, I wish Ruger would shorten the SRH, trimming the barrel to, say, 5.5". It'd look odd, but heck, the SRH is a "so bad it's good" aesthetic proposition in any barrel length. (I like its appearance - a mean s.o.b.)

campbell
September 4, 2007, 05:17 PM
Like Stainz, I wish Ruger would shorten the SRH, trimming the barrel to, say, 5.5"

What I want is for Ruger to scrap the orig Redhawk design and put out the Redhawk line with receivers that have the GP/Super Red internals. The only way I know to get something like this currently is Bowen's "giant GP-100" (http://www.bowenclassicarms.com/NEW/Projects.htm#The_Real_Super_Redhawk) (scroll down at that link for pics) where he takes the barrel out of the Super Redhawk Alaskan, and shortens the receiver so that it can be fitted with the Redhawk barrels.

It drives me nuts that Ruger doesn't offer this. I'm certain they would have no trouble on the sales front.

Nightcrawler
September 4, 2007, 05:34 PM
It drives me nuts that Ruger doesn't offer this. I'm certain they would have no trouble on the sales front.

S&W was offering big-bore revolvers with 4" barrels century before last. They've had a 4" .44 Magnum available since the cartridge was introduced in the late fifties.

Ruger's big, thrilling innovation of late was a Redhawk with a 4" barrel, more than 20 years after the design was introduced. 4" is probably the most popular barrel length in revolvers and Ruger finally clued in that someone might want one so configured.

That's the trouble with Ruger. They have a very hard time thinking out of the box, it seems.

That all said, the Ruger will be a fine field and utility gun, sturdy and reliable, if on the heavy side. (Matter of fact, the 4" Redhawk weighs in at more than my 5" 629 Classic with a full underlug barrel.) As I was whining at the recoil of some hot Remington 180 grainers yesterday, though, I was thinking that that weight might not be all bad. Holsters might be harder to find, and unlike a 4" 629, I don't know if anybody conceal-carries a 4" Redhawk (Hell, I would, if I had a good holster!).

Rexster
September 4, 2007, 05:41 PM
The new 4" Ruger Redhawks have EXCELLENT trigger pulls compared to previous Redhawks. There is no comparison; Ruger figured out a way to do it right. IMHO, a new 4" Redhawk will give you a BETTER trigger pull than the current crop of gritty S&W revolvers. I have owned several S&W M629 sixguns in the past, including one Mountain Revolver and two Mountain Guns. (Yes, there is a difference!) I have owned a .41 Redhawk in the past and a .45 Colt Redhawk now. The new 4" Redhawks are so well done, I am thinking seriously of buying one and sending it to be rebored to .45 Colt. I would tell the 'smith to leave the trigger alone, and I am NOT kidding.

john1911
September 4, 2007, 06:53 PM
The DA trigger on my 4" Redhawk is the best I've ever shot. The SA pull isn't the greatest.

It's been years since I've shot any S&W handgun. I prefer Rugers.

kludge
September 4, 2007, 07:06 PM
It drives me nuts that Ruger doesn't offer this. I'm certain they would have no trouble on the sales front.

Make mine a .45 Colt.

P. Plainsman
September 4, 2007, 07:24 PM
What I want is for Ruger to scrap the orig Redhawk design and put out the Redhawk line with receivers that have the GP/Super Red internals. ...

It drives me nuts that Ruger doesn't offer this. I'm certain they would have no trouble on the sales front.
That'd be great. Lastly, the "Nuevo Redhawk" should ditch the old Redhawk's grip frame, replacing it with the more versatile and comfortable "stud" of the SP/GP/SRH series. (That should trim a bit of weight, too.)

Otherwise, yeah, sign me up. I'll take mine in .44 Magnum, please.

campbell
September 4, 2007, 07:38 PM
Make mine a .45 Colt.

Me too. One of the things on my "want to buy but not in the budget yet" is a .454 Super Redhawk Alaskan sent to Bowen for that package I linked to. 4'' Redhawk barrel with those Hogue grips, would take hot .45 Colt loads all day long... Ideal woods gun.

Lastly, the "Nuevo Redhawk" should ditch the old Redhawk's grip frame, replacing it with the more versatile and comfortable "stud" of the SP/GP/SRH series.

Exactly. Better trigger pull, better recoil handling, etc. And it wouldn't be much of a change tooling wise. All they'd have to do is to take the existing mold design for the Alaskan receiver and trim it back a bit. All the other components are already in production.

nvcdl
September 4, 2007, 08:11 PM
I picked up a 4" Redhawk recently - haven't had a chance to shoot it but it is really a handy package. Trigger is not bad as it came.

I had been thinking about getting a 4" S&W 629 but the ones I saw at the gunshow seemed nowhere near as robust and they have that goofy trigger lock I don't want nor need.

ArchAngelCD
September 5, 2007, 03:26 AM
Thanks again to all who have answered in my thread. Now I'm even more confused than when I made the original post!! (but that's not a bad thing) I have more to consider now and can make a better decision.

Thanks again...

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