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Old September 24, 2012, 06:50 AM   #1
Doc Hoy
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Join Date: October 24, 2008
Location: Chesapeake, VA
Posts: 5,105
Long overdue range report...Vaquero

I am not smart enough about cartridge revolvers to tell you anything you don't already know but here goes.

I was shooting BPCR loads of 200 grain RNFP bullets and 28 and 35 gains of 777. I also shot a hundred rounds of bought cowboy loads (smokeless powder 200 gr. RNFP.)

I did not chrony the shots this time. There were other things I was trying to work out.

I shot the Vaquero interchangably with the Uberti Cattleman both of 5.5 inch barrel length.

The revolvers shot essentially the same. I was getting everything within the seven ring at 15 yards bench rested. (I am not a great shot.) I did have a coupla fliers which I can attribute to my own lapse in concentration. But the performance of the two pistols was similar. (Not a big surprise I guess.)

Both of the pistols seemed to gum up at about the same time. They wanted to be cleaned up after about 18 rounds. (I load all six so three cylinders and I will probably drop that to two.)

The Ruger stays looser than the Uberti when it comes to pulling the cylinder pin.

The Uberti has a relatively difficult half cock. It is a little difficult to find and it is easy to go past half cock which will eventually be damaging to the pistol if I am not careful.

I like the Ruger design of no-half-cock. Open the gate to roll the cylinder.

The checkering on the grips of the Ruger make it easier to shoot the heavier load than the smooth wood grip Uberti.

Both of them kick like a mule at 35 grains. I am going to chrony the two loads next time at the range to see what kind of speed I am getting from the lighter load. (I was getting 950 to 1000 fps from the Uberti with 35 gr.)

All in all this Vaquero is a dream of a pistol. But I must tell you that learning that the Uberti was as much fun to shoot as the Vaquero was gratifying. I now have two cartridge revolvers I am happy with and none that I am not.

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson
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Old September 24, 2012, 06:19 PM   #2
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Doc - this may or may not be an issue at some time for you with the New Vaquero as everyone is different. Mine is the 5.5" barrel in 357 Mag. When I first got mine, the only complaint I had on it were the stock plastic grips (checkered) - the points of the checkering I found to be very sharp and hard on my hands after shooting a 100 rounds or so. On another forum quite a while ago I read a post concerning this and the guy suggested pulling the grips and taking steel wool and carefully knocking the points off - he suggested steel wooling the entire grip - checkering and all. He had posted a photo of his and as he stated in his post, after the steel wooing, the checkering was much more comfortable and, the grips didn't have their glossy sheen but looked more like a Colt's original hard rubber grips.

I know that grips are a "personal" thing - some like wood some quasi ivory - smooth or checkered, etc. And, a person's hand size certainly comes in to play as well. Just thought I'd pass that on about steel wooling the grips as it was interesting and it took care of the problem for me - mine is much more comfortable to shoot now without the high points on the checkering.

Sounds like you had a great time - glad both revolvers shot well! Enjoy!
If a pair of '51 Navies were good enough for Billy Hickok, then a single Navy on my right hip is good enough for me . . . besides . . . I'm probably only half as good as he was anyways. Hiram's Rangers Badge #63
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Old September 24, 2012, 06:59 PM   #3
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I have two New Vaqueros, .357 and .45LC. I too had issues with the pointy checkering on these and did the grip mod. I started with steel wool but it kept snagging so I went with crocus cloth and water and the end result was a very comfortable set of grips that have a nicely aged appearance. Care must be used and frequent testing is necessary. You can't replace material once it's off.

The stock grips are a bit small for my hand and at some point I'll find some rosewood replacements. But for now the stock grips are doing a good job.

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Old September 25, 2012, 04:41 AM   #4
Doc Hoy
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Bedbug and Count

Two good posts.

Last week I shot 250 rounds with a fairly even distribution between the two pistols. About a third of those rounds were with the full load.

When I was finished my knuckles were skun up and my palm was a little sore but no problem with the checkering biting into my skin.

I love making things for my pistols and for shooting and I am skowering the countryside for some composite that looks like ivory or like antler.

I am too cheap to pay the price for a set of grips that are already made (and in addition, that defeats the purpose.)

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson
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Old September 27, 2012, 07:15 AM   #5
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Pictures? I saw an ad for stainless Vaqueros on the back of a magazine the other day and I almost think I'd think I'd rather have a Vaquero than a girlfriend
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