Ruger Single-Six: The New Model Family

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posted on March 23, 2022
Ruger New Model Single-Six revovler right-side view black gun

One of William Batterman Ruger’s best-timed and most ingenious introductions was the Ruger Single-Six. The standout hit the market when westerns dominated the silver screen and entire families gathered around TV sets to catch their favorite cowboy’s weekly adventure. Enthusiasts longed to own the guns used by the Lone Ranger and Roy Rogers. Used models were available, although new single-action revolver pickings were getting slimmer each day because Colt was no longer putting an emphasis on its production.

Ruger answered the demand in 1953 with the Ruger Single-Six. Chambered in .22 LR, it wore all the attractive looks of a Colt Single Action, but—thanks to investment casting—didn’t put as much strain on the family budget. The attention to detail and rugged construction made it a huge success, with orders doubling from 1954 to 1955.

A New Model Single Six appeared in 1973 with a transfer bar safety, which reduces the chances of a negligent discharge with a fully loaded cylinder. First generation models command high prices on the used market, but factory-fresh versions are every bit as rugged, good looking and they continue to be among the company’s most popular models.

There are currently five branches in this revolver’s family—the Single-Six, Single-Ten, Single-Six Convertible, Single-Nine and Single-Seven. The numeric designation indicates cartridge capacity. The Convertible ships with a spare cylinder, allowing owners to easily change between .22 LR and .22 WMR chamberings. All are constructed from alloy steel.

The Single-Six in .17 HMR has a 6.5-inch barrel, black, hard rubber grips with checkering and blued finish. MSRP is $779. There’s also a distributor-exclusive version chambered in .32 H&R.

Single-Tens, three of them, are all chambered in .22 LR and barrel lengths are either 4.62" or 5.5". MSRP for the hardwood gripped model with satin-stainless finish is $869. It ships with fiber-optic sights.

There’s no shortage of options in the New Model Single-Six family. The Single-Nine is chambered in .22 WMR, Single-Sevens run .327 Fed. and those versatile Convertibles have an MSRP of $779.

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