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Would you buy your SAA again or a different make, caliber, model?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by MCMXI, Jul 10, 2008.

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  1. MCMXI

    MCMXI Member

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    I'm on the verge of ordering a pair of SAA revolvers since I'm interested in getting into CAS and also, I like SAA revolvers. I've narrowed it down to USFA or STI "clones" and have read through most of the SAA related posts on this site. I was wondering if any owners of SAA revolvers could help me out? What SAA do you have and would you buy the same make, model and caliber again? If you have a .45LC have you found it to be an accurate round (this seems to be a popular caliber)? I'm considering the .45LC and .44WCF (which rules out STI). Would you order extra options if you were doing it again? Do you have any regrets or advice? I greatly appreciate any feedback. Thanks.

    :)
     
  2. vmi93

    vmi93 Member

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    I have a Colt, 2000's production with a Bob James trigger job. It belonged to a multi-state SASS champion who sold it when he switched to .38's. The feel of the action and the trigger is one of the most satisfying things you can engage in while fully clothed.

    I also have a Beretta Stampede. It is serviceable and shoots to point of aim.

    Finally, I have the guns Ive been shooting about twice a month in SASS matches for the past three years. Two Ruger Vaqueros (old model) in .357. They work every time and have never failed me.

    I don't see too many people having problems with their revolvers at matches (most malfunctions are with the long guns), but the few I have seen have been with guns that weren't made by Ruger. I don't think I have seen a USFA failure, but it's hard to tell the difference between the USFA's and some of the Italian clones at a distance. The people I know who shoot USFA's all like them. I have never seen any of the STI guns, so I have no opinion of those.

    As to choice of caliber, if I had to use a caliber starting with .4, I would stick with the .45LC. .44WCF brass is more expensive and the round is not used by a huge number of competitors. You can also find .45 LC ammo for sale more easily than .44WCF if you run out of reloads the day before a match. As to accuracy, all SASS shooting takes place inside of 25 yards, most inside of 15 yards, so either cartridge will be accurate enough.

    Sorry for the longwinded response, but I've missed the last two SASS matches around here and wanted to reminisce. :)
     
  3. tinygnat219

    tinygnat219 Member

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    I wouldn't redo my purchase of the Taurus Gauchos. Too crappy.

    I would purchase Ruger Blackhawks and be done with it.
     
  4. Molasses

    Molasses Member

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    I went through so stinking many over a period of over 20 years that it looked like a book when I started putting it all down. So. Short answer:

    What I've still got are stainless old model Ruger Vaqueros. A pair in .44-40 and another pair in .357. And the stuff that DIDN'T get traded or sold to get to this point. Heh.
     
  5. calaverasslim

    calaverasslim Member

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    SAA's

    I own 4 of the Colt 3rd gen's. 2 in 45lc, 1 of the 44 special and one of the 44-40.

    I own 3 USFA's, 2 ea of the 44-40's and one in 44 special.

    Several of the imports but am gradually selling them off.

    Having said all that, I have to say, by and large, the USFA's straight out of the box are some of the finest SAA's on the market.

    I love my 4 Colts but my go to gun for almost all occasion is a USFA Gunslinger, 44-40 with a 5.5" barrel. I have never regretted either of these brands and prefer them over all others.:D

    Just my humble opinion.
     
  6. Z71

    Z71 Member

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    I have a Stoeger Uberti 4 3/4" .45 Colt clone. This is my second Uberti, the first being a cheaper grade American Arms .44-40/44 Special convertable 7.5 inch barreled Colt clone.

    Yes, I would buy another Uberti single action.

    One thing that needs to be realized about the Colt clones, is they have many of the "Colt" failings. Mainly small parts breakage. The parts most commonly broken being the hand and or hand spring, and the trigger/cylinder bolt spring. The original Colts busted the same parts. I do notice that Uberti has departed from the original hand and hand spring design, and now use a beefed up hand and a coil spring and plunger.

    If you want a more Colt-like revolver get one of the Uberti's(Cimmarons, or whatever). If you want something super tough and just looks somewhat like a Peacemaker, get the Ruger. The Ruger is NOT prone to any breakage issues.

    Also, if you do get a Uberti or whatever revolver, avoid the charcoal or fireblue. Doesn't wear too well. Reguler blue being much longer lasting.
     
  7. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    Well, I shoot .45 Gauchos and a .45 Vaquero ("old new model"), and I am very happy with all of them.

    However, if I was going to start shooting CAS all over again, I would but a pair of "new new" Vaqueros in .357, and in stainless.

    Why? 1) it would be cheaper to feed them, and 2) one will never be competitive shooting .45's.
     
  8. Virginian

    Virginian Member

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    Many years ago I started out with Colts. Was very happy with them, no problems. A few years ago I decided money was not worthless, sold all the Colts, and now I have 2 original model Vaqueros and 2 Cimarrons. I love the Vaqueros but do not feel they are an apples to apples competitor with the Colt SAA. I am very happy with the Cimarrons and my money.
     
  9. sgtdevildog

    sgtdevildog Member

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    After much deliberation I ordered a USFA .45LC a couple months back. They had a deal that included an extra .45 acp cylinder and since I shoot a lot of acp I went that way. Trigger is great, finish is great and since I shoot mostly acp it's pretty convenient. I would most definitely buy another USFA. Since it's mostly a range gun the hammer on empty chamber and carry 5 doesn't bother me.
     
  10. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Have had Colt, Cimarron/ASM, and Mitchell/Uberti, not to mention S&W.

    If I had to start over, most likely USFA. I'd probably have it "rugerized" with coil spring and plunger to replace the leaf handspring. I'd keep a spare flat bolt-trigger spring on hand rather than go to the durable but soft bent wire.
     
  11. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    I been using Colt SAA's since I bought my first 1st Generation 44-40 in pieces filling a shoe box in 1981 for $145 at a swap meet. I still have it and it shoots good. 2 years ago I got a new 3rd gen from the Colt Custom shop to my order, a 44 special. That is the caliber I would recommend, it leaves more steel around the cartridges.

    45 Colt is very accurate to if the revolver is built right, as with any.

    I had a Ruger Blackhawk 3 screw when I was 16 and it was a good gun.

    My son works the action to hard for my Colts or any Italian or German copies, knocking them out of time. So I don't let him touch them anymore. He has Rugers.

    Colt SAA have always held up in my hands. I've had the Italian and German copies and some of them are very good. I have not had a USFA.

    The new Ruger Vaquero is probably the best for your money and can be carried with all six rounds.

    You have to think all the time about traditional Colt SAA/copies that would have the firing pin resting on the primer if you load six. Only load 5 with the hammer down on a empty chamber. Do not trust the safety notch of the trigger-hammer sear engagement for anything but to break the tip of the trigger off.

    Hope that helps.
     
  12. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    I think the USFA Rodeo is the best value out there with the Rugers a good choice also, but they have the transfer bar which some like and some don't. I like the four clicks of the original action.
     
  13. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    I've got one each of an STI, Turnbull Classic/USFA, Uberti and New Vaquero, all in .45 Colt. It just sort of happened - I don't shoot competively.

    The STI gets shot the most - it's got the nicest trigger and it makes me grin. The Ruger has an awful trigger but it's still fun to shoot, the Turnbull seems overly sprung and the Uberti seems overly loose. These are all subjective "straight out of the box" impressions - none have been 'smithed or molested.

    In my highly subjective and personal view, if I had to keep just one, it'd be the STI. I expect the STI's lack of flexiblity would discourage many (you can get it any way you want so long as it's a 5-1/2" barrel in .45 Colt) and it's currently a pain to find one. I also tend to wonder how long it'll be around - STI isn't well known for suffering overlong with slow suppliers.
     
  14. Coyote3855

    Coyote3855 Member

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    I've owned, and shot in SASS competition, 2nd generation Colts, Uberti clones, and one USFA. I currently use OM Ruger stainless Vaqueros in .45. Recently bought a pair of Cimarron (Uberti) Open Top replicas but haven't used them in a match yet. I went to Rugers because I was tired of replacing parts in Colts and clones. However, that was ten years ago and I understand that the newer SAA copes - STI, USFA, etc. are stronger guns. After ten years of shooting and lots of dry firing, both my Vaqueros broke in a 10 day period. On one broke a hammer plunger spring. The other broke the pin that connects the pawl to the hammer broke off. I'd still opt for Rugers for reliability, clones for authenticity.
     
  15. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    Purchased a Colt SAA in .357 magnum in 1966 brand new in the box for $136.00 and change. I still have it and still shoot it. What was the question again??
     
  16. bobotech

    bobotech Member

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    I have about 8 Ruger revolvers, a mix of Vaqueros and Blackhawks.

    I had a Cimarron at one point and hated it compared to the Rugers. Shot the Cimarron at the range twice and some things broke on it. I was shooting cowboy loads of 45colt and the cylinder pawl thingy broke and then after fixing that, the spring on the bottom under the bolt broke and then the little thing under the hammer (not sure what it was called) broke.

    Quite annoying to have a gun where all those little parts broke whereas my Rugers have never failed me. Sold that Cimarron and bought another Ruger.

    The Cimarron also felt too small in my hand.
     
  17. gtmerkley

    gtmerkley member

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    97 winchester's sa!
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2008
  18. cpirtle

    cpirtle Member

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    I started with 3 guns and I would shoot 2 of them each match until I decided what I liked best.

    - Vaquero Birdshead
    - Beretta Stampede
    - Taurus Gaucho


    I liked all 3 and despite what others have said I was very happy with the Gaucho. I ultimately liked the Vaquero BH the best and sold the other two in favor of a pair of Vaq birds heads.

    But for all of my effort I now own 3 pairs of pistols for CAS.

    - Original Vaquero 357's
    - Blackhawk 9mm/357 convertibles
    - Nickel Beretta Laramie break opens in 38sp (consecutive SN's)

    I'm going to shoot the laramie's in a match for the first time in a couple of weeks.


    One suggestion, with current ammo costs (and especially if you don't reload) you may want to consider 357's. Some purists will say the "gamers" like to shoot 38's but there's also an economic factor if you like to shoot a lot. 3 of my 10 CAS guns are 38 only so that's what I reload even though I started with 357.
     
  19. MCMXI

    MCMXI Member

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    Thanks for the excellent replies which I've read five times already!!

    This is proving to be a very difficult decision and I thank each one of you for your thoughtful comments. As much as the Ruger Vaqueros are an excellent value at under $1000 for a pair, I'm leaning towards a pair of USFA nickel plated revolvers (possibly with stag stocks) in 45LC or 44WCF. Whichever caliber I ultimately choose, I'll order the dual caliber cylinder for sure. If I really enjoy CAS and feel that I could be competitive with a smaller caliber, then I could always buy a pair of Vaqueros and keep the bigger stuff for other occasions or uses. If I don't really enjoy CAS, then I'll have a pair of really nice revolvers that will hopefully last a lifetime and may even become collectible.

    :)
     
  20. gruesomenewsom

    gruesomenewsom Member

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    I got a new-in-box colt saa in .45lc with a 4-5/8" barrel about 3 months ago. Don't regret it but I would have bought USFA instead. At least I'd be able to shoot that one-I just can't seem to put a round through an unfired Colt SAA. Other than that I got a vaquero. If you ask me rugers are the best deal going. $350 for a used (but brand new) .44 magnum vaquero in polished stainless. For ruggedness and economical value rugers are about the cats ass.
     
  21. Harve Curry

    Harve Curry Member

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    Unless you are buying it for investment shoot the darn thing. That is what they are made for. Mine is from the Colt Custom shop, engraved 1/2 coverage, gold inlays front sight, plus my signature down the backstrap. Sorry no ivories. I carry and shoot it almost everyday. It is in a holster ready to go all the time. It will have plenty of honest wear on it when I check out.
     
  22. gruesomenewsom

    gruesomenewsom Member

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    Yeah I know im being a wimp about it. I didnt buy it for investment and I dont ever plan on getting rid of it. I'm even apprehensive to shoot my python at times just because colts are so darn hard to replace (and ive got a corresponding "cheap" ruger to match all of my colts).
     
  23. TallPine

    TallPine Member

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    Some years ago I bought an "old" Vaquero .45. I wanted something that could shoot hot loads in grizzly country and I wanted a "cowboy" centerfire single action. I don't do CAS.

    At that time I didn't really understand the difference in frame sizes. Nothing wrong with the Vaquero but looking back I wonder if I should have just gotten a Blackhawk instead (maybe in 44mag?), since the original Vaqueros are "neither fish nor fowl."

    I would really like to get one of the new Vaqueros, though not in .45 because I don't want to risk mixing up the ammo. Actually, if I could afford it right now I would like a .357 Vaquero for a daily carry instead of the Security Six. :)
     
  24. Jim March

    Jim March Member

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    I own a Ruger NewVaq 357 and love it. It was right'n'tight out of the box, and I've modified it since :). Better sights, thinner grips, spring kit, SBH hammer so far. May switch it to Bird's Head with a Qualitas/QPR/MK-Tech kit.

    If I could find one of the distributor special runs in all-blue, that would be better as the Ruger "fake case colors" are the only cheesy thing about mine. Not a problem though.

    [​IMG]

    It's my daily carry CCW piece :) in a fanny pack.

    This thing can shoot 2" off the bench with factory JHPs. Even before the sights swap, windage was dead on - the sight mods were not done to correct any factory flaw. Rear sight channel is hogged out to match the new wider Novak front.
     
  25. jamesb

    jamesb Member

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    I have a 3rd gen Colt SAA, 4 3/4 barrel in .45 colt. I like it but I think my next one will have a longer barrel. The shorter barrel looks better to me but I have trouble shooting the group size I want with it. It does fine for CAS targets and ranges but I am not happy with my groups when I punch paper. I do much better with my longer 51 navy. As for the caliber, 45 does fine for me. Next SAA will probly be in 44-40 just because I am interested in the caliber and is historically accurate for a lever gun to match it.
     
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