Ruger Vaquero Birds Head .44 Magnum/.44 Particular

Ruger Vaquero Birds Head .44 Magnum/.44 Particular

Simply once I thought I used to be performed straining my wrists firing extra .44 Magnum ammunition than a standard, sane individual fires in a lifetime, I obtained a bundle at my FFL. Seems I had yet another to go. Now, I’ll let you know truthfully that after 3,000 rounds of ole’ Elmer’s Particular, I virtually despatched the Ruger New Vaquero packing again to the manufacturing facility, however I’ve to say that I’m glad I didn’t.

I’ve written about a lot of very highly effective revolvers right here on AmmoLand prior to now. I’ve to say that I’m at some extent in my life when the phrases ‘forty-four’ and ‘magnum’ are utilized in the identical sentence- and even the identical conversation- my palms start to twitch with the reminiscence of the torturous two weeks the place I dropped the hammer on a few of most painful masses made by man.

Ruger Vaquero Birds Head .44 Magnum/.44 Special
Ruger Vaquero Birds Head .44 Magnum/.44 Particular

Most individuals would have stopped after only a couple rounds of Buffalo Bore 340gr Hardcast +P+, however not me. I simply sat down and primarily injured myself day by day for fourteen days. On the finish of that point, I developed a wholesome respect for the .44 Magnum and a love of the .44 Particular. You see, the expertise I gained in that point confirmed me simply how enduring the legend of the .44 bore is to us Individuals.

There may be at all times one thing particular about seeing an individual hearth a full-house .44 Magnum for the primary time. For many individuals, it’s the strongest handgun cartridge they ever hearth. When you think about the .44 Magnum to be authoritative, then you definitely would most likely agree that the .44 Particular is the equal of a stern suggestion.

Where this gun shines is when shooting .44 Special
The place this gun shines is when capturing .44 Particular.

The Ruger New Vaquero isn’t a gun that I loved capturing with .44 Magnum ammo, though I did within the identify of science for the aim of recording group measurement and velocity. The place this gun shines is when capturing .44 Particular, and I wager that the overwhelming majority of people that use this gun for enjoyable or in competitors will find yourself doing simply that. With the precise .44 Particular load, this gun is an absolute hammer, and it may be fired all day.

Whereas it could appear to be an SAA revolver just like the Cowboys carried, the New Vaquero is what I might name a cosmetic-only copy. The revolver is made to resemble the weapons of yesteryear externally, however it’s solely trendy in supplies and design. Whereas general much like an previous 45 Colt, the New Vaquero is about 10% bigger in whole dimensions and about 20% heavier at 39oz. The SAA and clones are lighter and thinner in most areas, however it is because they had been designed round a lot lower-pressure ammunition.

Added heft and modern construction make the New Vaquero an ideal platform for the .44 Special
Added heft and trendy building make the New Vaquero a perfect platform for the .44 Particular

The added heft and trendy building make the New Vaquero a perfect platform for the .44 Particular. The low recoil mixed with simple dealing with makes it a pleasure to fireplace. Not like the unique SAA, the New Vaquero has an angular grip that makes it considerably uncomfortable to carry beneath heavy recoil. The SAA has a clean and sculptural really feel, however sadly, the birdshead grip lacks that feeling. The squared edges on the rear of the grip curve dig into the hand and might be painful with the extra highly effective .44 Magazine masses.


I examined a number of sorts of .44 Magnum and .44 Particular ammunition on this revolver. I recorded velocity over my Oehler 35P chronograph at a distance of 5 ft from the muzzle. Accuracy is the results of three, five-shot teams at 25 yards.

  • SIG SAUER 240gr V-Crown——————————————1160fps, 2.5”
  • SIG SAUER 200gr V-Crown (.44 Particular)————————–810fps, 3.75”
  • Hornady 180gr XTP (.44 Particular)—————————————840fps, 3.0”
  • Hornady 165gr Crucial Protection (.44 Particular)————————861fps, 2.75”
  • Black Hills 240gr JHP————————————————–1183fps, 2.25”
  • Black Hills 160gr HoneyBadger————————————–1501fps, 3.75”
  • Black Hills 210 FPL (.44 Particular)————————————–744fps, 3.1”
  • Black Hills 125gr HoneyBadger (.44 Particular)———————–1212fps, 2.0”

The sights on the revolver are mounted and non-adjustable. Most SAA-type revolvers I’ve shot through the years have had entrance sights which are far too excessive out of the field. That is generally only a design oversight, and different occasions, it’s intentional in that it permits a shooter to file the sight down to regulate elevation. The follow isn’t as frequent at this time, with adjustable and modular sights being commonplace, however for the traditionalist, nothing is pretty much as good as a rugged, mounted publish and notch.

Dwell Stock Worth Checker

The pattern gun I had right here shot excessive, which was a shock and one thing that I used to be not terribly enthusiastic about. If I had been a cowboy competitor, I must add materials to have the ability to zero or have the entrance sight eliminated and a dovetail reduce to put in a sight with windage adjustment, which might not be a enjoyable course of. The brief 3.75” barrel leaves one thing to be desired relating to sight radius, however group sizes had been on par for revolvers of the sort.

SIG SAUER’s 200gr .44 Special V-Crown
SIG SAUER’s 200gr .44 Particular V-Crown

My teams with each .44 Magnum and Particular had been centered however excessive by about 7” at 25 yards. There may be not that a lot distinction between the 2 at that vary, so it isn’t a case of the gun being set for .44 Particular with the added bonus of having the ability to hearth .44 Magnum. I believe that the top person will decide on a load that provides them one of the best efficiency. The one load I had that shot to actual level of purpose was SIG SAUER’s 200gr .44 Particular V-Crown.

SIG SAUER’s 200gr .44 Special V-Crown
SIG SAUER’s 200gr .44 Particular V-Crown

Firing the gun was an general constructive expertise regardless of these minor points. The gun was a dream with Black Hills lead cowboy masses, and I might hearth each quick and precisely on metal plates inside 20 yards. The lowered hammer spur and good set off make the gun simple to function one-handed and from a draw.

I feel that the cowboy competitor could be properly served with any of Ruger’s New Vaquero line. I’ve shot them in a lot of chamberings and have at all times had a superb expertise. Whereas not a real historic gun, it actually captures the spirit of the day whereas bringing trendy security measures and supplies to the desk.

For extra on the gun and ammo used on this assessment, go to,,, and

About Josh Wayner

Josh Wayner has been writing within the gun business for 5 years. He’s an lively competitors shooter with 14 medals from Camp Perry. Along with firearms-related work, Josh enjoys working with animals and researching conservation tasks in his residence state of Michigan.

Ruger Vaquero Birds Head .44 Magnum/.44 Special is written by Josh Wayner for

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