From the Vault: Ruger Super Blackhawk

From the Vault: Ruger Super Blackhawk

“A gun that does its job so well, we tend to take it for granted,” is how Brownells Gun Tech™ Steve Ostrem describes the Ruger® Super Blackhawk® – a deficiency he redresses in this video! Under founder Bill Ruger, “Sturm, Ruger & Co.” first produced two .22 rimfire guns, the Standard Model .22 Automatic Pistol and the Single-Six® single action revolver. Then it was time for a centerfire single action revolver, the “small frame” Blackhawk in .357 Magnum. When the .44 Magnum cartridge came along, Ruger tried to chamber the Blackhawk for it, but the gun was just too small. The frame was extended and the cylinder beefed up, and thus the Super Blackhawk was born in 1959. Like the Colt Single Action Army, you have to pull the hammer to half-cock to load it, and it’s not safe to put that hammer down on a chamber with a live round in it (later resolved by Ruger transfer bar safety system in 1973). The Super Blackhawk also got a longer grip, “dragoon” triggerguard, wider hammer spur, and extra protection for the rear sight.

Steve’s shows us the details of his Super Blackhawk that’s been customized by our friend Bobby Tyler and his crew at Tyler Gun Works in Texas. The Super Blackhawk is super popular with handgun hunters because it’s so reliable and does its job so well it doesn’t draw the wrong type of attention to itself. It’s so robust that loading manuals include extra-powerful .44 Magnum loads ONLY for the Ruger Super Blackhawk.

50 Comments

  1. let's Go Brandon on September 20, 2022 at 8:31 pm

    I own a Super Blackhawk in .41 mag, Super Redhawk in .44 mag along with some others. I would say my .41 mag might be the most comfortable and on spot out of all , even my Colts!

  2. Cletus Kasady on September 20, 2022 at 8:32 pm

    I don’t understand the decision to use a Dragoon squareback trigger guard. Someone explain the rationale behind it…

  3. E.L. Ripley on September 20, 2022 at 8:33 pm

    Great segment, and I love the custom gun you have there, but one thing, you lost the factory “super blue, super polish” when they customized it! Definitely a better hunting handgun, but I love my original Super Blackhawk, which I bought in ‘78. For a while you could get factory brass grip frames for them, but I missed out. I also have a 3-screw Blackhawk convertible 4 5/8” in .45 Colt with a .45 ACP cylinder. Great guns.

  4. Steven Bramschreiber on September 20, 2022 at 8:34 pm

    Have owned mine for 40 years..NEVER had a problem with it and have put a lot of ammo through it over the years…LOVE THIS GUN!!

  5. Jon Erdmann on September 20, 2022 at 8:35 pm

    I have one in 4.63" barrel, love it.

  6. TheShooter3006 on September 20, 2022 at 8:37 pm

    I purchased a new stainless Super-Blackhawk 44 magnum in the early, to middle, 80s and immediately sent it to Magna-port for their conversion to a scoped model. Best hunting handgun I’ve ever owned. It will stay in my family as long as out government will allow. It has a few mule deer and one 5×6 elk to it’s credit. My favorite load was a 320 grain hard-cast going at about 1200 fps. Stiff recoil but the magnaporting, I’m sure, helped a lot. This pistol belongs in a museum if the govt takes away all our firearms.

  7. Roger Lambert on September 20, 2022 at 8:37 pm

    I have a beautiful 44 Magdalen from my father-in-law passed away super Blackhawk Have a done nothing to it yet I want to get some nice grips

  8. John Metz on September 20, 2022 at 8:38 pm

    That’s the one I had, But with a 10 and a half in barrel, And was not a 3 screw

  9. Mofat Jippy Fransisco on September 20, 2022 at 8:39 pm

    10 1/2" version for me, loved it…one of my huge regrets was selling it after getting a couple more Ruger 44’s…9 1/2" Super Redhawk and an Alaskan.

  10. 4MRholsterco on September 20, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    My first handgun was a stainless new model super Blackhawk 7 1/2” that I still have today. I run 340gr +p+ through it and it’s not punishing through this gun. Not long after I got it, I got a coyote at 80 yards out of my tree stand, so it’s accurate for sure, far more accurate than me.

  11. RICHGCOOP1 on September 20, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    I have the 10 and half inch barrel Super Blackhawk. I did a trigger job on it with a 1 lb pull and .a.010 in.total movement. Milk jugs full of water at 50 yards is no problem.

  12. Stephen Borg on September 20, 2022 at 8:42 pm

    I have a super Blackhawk in 480Ruger. Extremely accurate out to aboutc85yrd, which is all myb3yes will let do. It came with the Bisley grip, which I dont like. Put regular super Blackhawk grip frame with Pacmyer gips. Made the gun more controllable and helped reduce recoil.if I do mybpart, it will group inside 2" at 50 yards. Not to bad for a 6" barreled revolver.

  13. Stephen DeMyer on September 20, 2022 at 8:44 pm

    great info.thank you.

  14. Chuck on September 20, 2022 at 8:44 pm

    My first pistol shot was with a .357 Blackhawk where I hit a concrete block at 50 yards, exploding it. I was impressed and years later bought a Super Blackhawk that I used for deer hunting. I put in a spring kit and had better sights installed. The 7.5” barrel is a bit long for a belt holster, so I carry it in a Safariland shoulder holster during hunting. This has proved to be a winning combo. I prefer the smooth grip that came with the gun as it rotates in your hand and takes the recoil. I prefer this pistol over any other in.44 mag.

  15. David Hoffner on September 20, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    My first hand gun purchase was a Super Blackhawk 7.5 inch 1980.. only have put a set of left handed target grips on it. about as perfect as perfaect can be.

  16. freakindawgen on September 20, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    This was my first gun.

  17. Timothy Spahn on September 20, 2022 at 8:48 pm

    Great video I just got one yesterday love it! My first ruger

  18. S E on September 20, 2022 at 8:49 pm

    Thanks for the video. Like several others, I’ve owned many Ruger 44Mag in different models, and the only thing I wish Ruger would fix is to offer it with thicker grip panels. The factory panels are great for a lady’s hand size, but lady’s don’t shoot this gun in 44Mag. And it’s so hard to find someone to make custom (and thicker) grip panels for a more comfortable fit and better control under recoil. Throw in a factory (Bowen style) rear sight and then the gun would be perfect right out of the box.

  19. AZshooter on September 20, 2022 at 8:52 pm

    Love my .41 Magnum Super Blackhawk. Shoots better and easier than .44 mag. I installed a Wolff spring kit & it’s just the way I want it.

  20. Thestargazer56 on September 20, 2022 at 8:53 pm

    I have a Super Blackhawk. The only modification is the addition of Pachmar grips making it more comfortable to shoot. He also had an S&W Model 29 that he purchased in 1958. I remember him showing me typewritten letters signed by Elmer Keith where they were discussing bullet weights and powder charges. Grandad loved the Blackhawk more because he could load it hotter.

  21. McSchneive Outdoors on September 20, 2022 at 8:55 pm

    I have a Super Blackhawk 3 screw in .44. Absolutely LOVE it. Been in the family since the 70’s and wasn’t shot much. Until I got it. And it’s been playing catch up ever since!

  22. jrjw Waste on September 20, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    My first handgun, made in the 200th year of American liberty. Well used.

  23. Ammo08 on September 20, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    I bought a used New Model Super Blackhawk in 1973 for $150.00 and I got some ammo and a nice western gun belt with it…the previous owner was scared to shoot it.

  24. hammerman947 on September 20, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    As everyone else can attest its a great firearm. Only thing about it Id like to see changed is the trigger. The rough grooves on it tend to sore up your finger after shooting it for a while.

    Every other Ruger SA has a smooth trigger. Wondering why cant the Super Blackhawk have one as well? Thats only improvement I can think of.

  25. Jeffery Tillis on September 20, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    I have a New Model Blackhawk in 41 Rem Mag. Can I switch the grip frame out to the Super Blackhawk grip ? How easy would it be to do? Are there any modifications that would have to be done?

  26. Recoil Therapy Channel on September 20, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    I’m a big fan of the original three screw Rugers. I have both of the 44’s mentioned in this video (1956 flattop 44 and a 1960 SBH) in addition to several others. Great guns all around!!

  27. N Pb on September 20, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    Where can I get replacement factory wood grips for my ruger super blackhawk in 44mag?

  28. blade 87 on September 20, 2022 at 8:59 pm

    I hunted small game with a single six but I do love the Blackhawk alot for a backup gun for hogs

  29. 64samsky on September 20, 2022 at 9:00 pm

    My father had an original 7.5 inch Blackhawk that he sold to a friend of his, along with a beautiful Ithaca 12 gauge. They were supposed to get sold back to me when I became of age. Both were stolen out of his truck while he was hunting in West Virginia.

  30. Andrew Variano on September 20, 2022 at 9:01 pm

    Love mine. I bought it in ’81 and in the mid-90s had Roy Fishpaw put custom grips on it and Hamilton Bowen do some sight, cylinder, and trigger work on it. Both of them were great to work with and did incredible work which really improved my gun. One of the amazing things to me, and a sign of "how things used to be" compared to the ridiculously liability-focused world we live in now was that Hamilton had me send him 20 of MY handloads for him to use to ensure that he had the sights machined correctly. He returned them with several spent cases, indicating that he very likely actually DID use them. I doubt that would occur with a gunsmith today, and was always something that really impressed me about working with him.

  31. Dennis Williams on September 20, 2022 at 9:02 pm

    You didn’t mention the Blackhawk in .357 maxi. I used one in Alaska as my backup/fishing weapon. Still got it.

  32. C Schym on September 20, 2022 at 9:04 pm

    I have the Super Blackhawk 1 of 1000 Turnbull color case hardened addition. Wouldn’t change a thing.

  33. joe wiese on September 20, 2022 at 9:06 pm

    What are some scope suggestions for a 10 1/2 inch barrel .44 mag that wont break the bank?

  34. Jakob Benning on September 20, 2022 at 9:07 pm

    What sights are those on the three screw, I would like to get those

  35. sean mac dermott on September 20, 2022 at 9:08 pm

    I have a Super Blackhawk with a 5 inch barrel. It has a fluted cylinder and round trigger guard. This is a factory configuration. I believe only the 5 inch version is offered like this. I really like the round trigger guard as the deagoon trigger guard smashes my knuckle. The round trigger guard seem to just glide over my finger not dig in.

  36. Ricky Shultz on September 20, 2022 at 9:09 pm

    With a 7 1/2” barrel I’d like to have a ejection rod that completely pushes out empty cases . Other than that I’m happy with my SBH .

  37. Brian Van Norman on September 20, 2022 at 9:13 pm

    If your coffee cup has cats on it, then I want one.

  38. dwayne oswald on September 20, 2022 at 9:14 pm

    I’d like to get mine done up .what was that place in tx called

  39. Doug R on September 20, 2022 at 9:14 pm

    I grew up in Northwest Iowa and got my first Ruger Super Blackhawk when I turned 18. After finishing school, I moved to Texas. 40+ years later, I’ve used that same revolver as a companion on so many big game hunts I’ve long since lost count. I’ve taken numerous deer, a few black bear and many dozens of hogs. The gun has never needed any repairs and has remained supremely accurate. It has always been carried in a factory Ruger leather flap holster. The longest shot ever made with it was a stepped off 200 yard offhand shot on a coyote while pheasant hunting. The only modification to the revolver has been the addition of Pachmayr grips. I’ve often thought about different customizations to it, but not convinced any changes would make it anymore reliable or accurate.

  40. John Simons on September 20, 2022 at 9:17 pm

    I have a 7.5" ruger super blackhawk 44 magnum. With a burris 2-7×32 ballistic retical with burris rings on a scope mount and a pair of rose wood grips with checkering on them and I love it

  41. Rick Marosi on September 20, 2022 at 9:17 pm

    I’ve hunted with my 7.5 in for 40 yrs with & without a scope. Taken some nice Whitetail bucks & 4 elk, including my 2 largest bulls ever. Only use a cast bullet (Elmer Keith) with his loads. All kills were under 65 yds & only 1 went more than 75 yds.

  42. Jeff Badger on September 20, 2022 at 9:17 pm

    Mine is one of the first run Bisley’s It has been used hard over the years and shot a lot. I carried it up on the Ranch in a chest holster so much it almost looks like a stainless version there is so much blue worn off.Used it to kill mule deer,black bear and elk.At about 35 yards a 300 gr. wide flat nose will go length wise thru a BIG cow elk and exit. I won’t give the load but it is over book.Would not trade or sell it for any amount of money.

  43. UP Rebel on September 20, 2022 at 9:18 pm

    I live in Michigan and was lucky enough to have met Larry Kelly back in the day. His words convinced me to buy a Super Blackhawk in .45 Long Colt. Yes, it is Mag-Na-Ported like many of my other firearms.

  44. steve on September 20, 2022 at 9:19 pm

    Have a 1964 super Blackhawk with only about 300 rounds through it. A hand cannon. Was sent back to factory long time ago to be converted but factory did send all parts back in sealed package so can always be converted back. One of my favorite guns that i own.

  45. Big Truck Little RV on September 20, 2022 at 9:19 pm

    My then 92′ Blackhawk now Super Blackhawk 45 Colt 7.5" shot 2" groups @ 100yds sitting with 300 XTP H110 loads. Stock sights. Now it’s a Super thanks to me and a 76′ Dragoon grip frame, Super hammer, Belt Mtn base pin and steel Story ejector housing. Bought the Blackhawk for $240 new in 92′ after researching the 45 Colt vs 42 Mag. Saved $100 going with the more powerful 45

  46. Walks Fletcher on September 20, 2022 at 9:22 pm

    The SBH didn’t get it’s bbl shortened until after Bill Ruger passed.

  47. Bones Jonnie on September 20, 2022 at 9:23 pm

    I have a super black hawk with a three didget serial no. Can you give me a idea what it’s worth? Need to add to insurance.

  48. Pistola on September 20, 2022 at 9:24 pm

    Such an articulate gentleman delivering intricate gun knowledge. Thanks

  49. Steve Mentis on September 20, 2022 at 9:26 pm

    I have several Rugers in 44 mag and like them all. My favorite one is the 9 1/2 stainless Super Redhawk. Shot at a gallon water jug at 275 yards and hit it twice. It was just dumb luck I hit it but my two friends with me were really impressed .

  50. So Cal Guns on September 20, 2022 at 9:27 pm

    Very nice!!

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