Thinking of a new revolver


Well-Known Member
I have one which I added a Ruger Bisley grip frame to try it out. Worked out nicely (had to fit
it to the main frame and finish it) and still not sure if I like it as well as the original grip frame.

Had to ream mine, throats went from .449 to 450, groove diam is .452. Reamed and polished to
.4525. Much better.



My Ruger Blackhawk Bisley in .45 Colt doesn't have a .45 acp option but I am actually glad about that. I love the .45 Colt cartridge as it can be loaded up or down so easily as it is. Mine has the 7.5" barrel. I think you will like it but like others here have mentioned, it would be handier with a shorter barrel, somewhere around 4.5 to 5.5" would seem to be better but I haven't tried one that barrel length so I can't really say if I'd like it better. Its a Blackhawk with a Bisley grip and its the only Blackhawk I own thus I have nothing to compare it to. I personally like revolvers to have cylinders that are sized to the length of the cartridge. I don't shoot .38 specials in my .357 and don't really see the point in doing that unless that is the only ammo you can find in an emergency. Then that option is nice to have.


Active Member
Wayco mine is 42 yrs old. They are a tool that may need some tinkering but well worth the money. You may need a higher front sight for heavy bullets.
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Active Member
I understand. I promised myself this will be the last year for bulk firewood processing. I'm about to turn 68 & the fired wood is getting in the way of my fishing. Maybe a pellet stove is in my future.


Active Member
My Ruger SS Bisley .45 ACP/.45 Colt Conversion came with undersize cylinder throats in both cylinders. Leaded terribly in .45 Colt in just .30 shots. I could not even load my .45 ACP with my home cast .452" bullets.

After I reamed the cylinders with a "made for the task" Manson reamer kit complete with pilots, the revolver became the "gun of dreams". It shoots under an inch at 25 yards off a rest with either cylinder. It definitely "goes from mild to wild" by judicious handloading with my own cast bullets.

In short it is a DANDY!

Brian Pearce has some REALLY good articles in the Handloader on loading for my revolver as well as the newer Ruger Flattop .45 ACP/.45 Colt Convertible. The flattops come with better dimensions right out of the box. The Flattop is a Tier II piece, my SS Bisley is a Tier III. Frankly, given a choice I might lean towards the Flattop for it's slightly better handling, On the other hand, I would NOT hesitate to buy mine if I didn't already have it. A quick trip to "Doug Guy" for the cylinders would not put me off, NOT AT ALL. Either one of these revolvers represent some of the best "all around" revolvers of all times!


Jeff H

NW Ohio
Of all the Ruger single-actions I've owned, the OM 45 Colt was tops, and that even nudges out a custom 3-screw Blackhawk conversion to 44 Special and three (four*) different Flat Top 44 Specials.

Cartridge-wise, I love the 45 Colt and the 44 Special, but the 44 won out when I began consolidation of bore sizes and components I needed to source and stock. There wasn't a Charter 45 Colt Bulldog, in other words.

What was so great about that OM 45 Colt is that it was an OM (and I had divested myself of all NMs by that time), it was the right overall size, it didn't have the SBH grip frame (or a Bisley, both of which are way too big for me), and the weight distribution was perfect for very natural handling. Oh, and it was a 45 Colt.

This one was a 5.5" (originally 7.5" - long story), came with the grip frame that fits me best (XR3-RED or similar) and the grip frame being aluminum gave it a weight distribution that made it handle very well for me. It didn't seem as heavy as my OM SBH or my NM Flat Top 44 Specials in the same barrel length, even though it was the larger NM Blackhawk frame.

If I were to make a recommendation to someone else, I'd probably nudge them toward the new Flat Top 45 Colts, with or without an ACP cylinder. I personally stuck with the 44 Special because of one small but important tipping point - I could cast and load for one cartridge for which I could have both a robust, all-purpose woods/trail/huntng gun as well as a pocketable self-defense piece. There was no 45 Bulldog at the time.