As always, I feel far more knowledgeable now than I did before asking.
Ruger does knock the "new" off the Vaquero on their website. Which is actually kind of strange as all the other SA revolvers are "new" something or others.
One other question, and I don't want to start a caliber fight, but - presuming I'm reloading - is there a sizable advantage to .45 colt over .44 mag? Keeping in mind that most of the shooting I do with either one will be with fairly low powered practice loads.
The only bears we have locally are black bears, so it's not as if I need to carry a hand cannon on a daily basis (yelling and waving a stick has proved 100% effective to date), but my feeling is that if I'm going to get a large framed revolver I'd like to at least have the option of shooting impressively hot out of it.
The reason I ask is that it seems like a fairly large percentage of the SA revolvers I see used locally are .44. So it it's 6 of one, 1/2 dozen of the other looking at both would definitely give me more options. Also, despite the .45 having far more nostalgic appeal, the .44 can be had with an unfluted cylinder.
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. ~B. Franklin