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Single Six a LR only or not?

This is a discussion on Single Six a LR only or not? within the Ruger Single Action forums, part of the Pistol & Revolver Forum category; Single Six experts . . . I found a Single Six OM 3 screw, serial number 21-458xx. 1972 production from what I found on Ruger’s ...


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Old January 31st, 2020, 05:52 PM   #1
 
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Single Six a LR only or not?

Single Six experts . . . I found a Single Six OM 3 screw, serial number 21-458xx. 1972 production from what I found on Ruger’s website. It only has one cylinder with it. How can I tell if it is LR only or is a convertible with the magnum cylinder missing? It has Ruger .22 cal. on the left side of receiver. Thanks fellas.
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Old January 31st, 2020, 06:57 PM   #2
 
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Sounds like a question Iowegan could help you with.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 12:05 AM   #3
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jadeandnoni, If it has 22 Cal stamped on the left side, it was shipped either as a 22 LR only or a 22 Convertible. Magnum Single-Sixes had "Win. .22 RF MAG" stamped on the left side. Your serial number indicates a 1972 manufacturing date. The magnum only models went out of production in 1964 so your gun was most likely shipped as a convertible.

The best way to determine which cylinder you have is to try to chamber a 22 Mag cartridge. A 22 Mag cartridge will not fit in a LR chamber> For 10 bucks, Ruger will provide a letter of authenticity that will have the date shipped and the exact configuration.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 05:49 AM   #4
 
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Thanks Iowegan. When I tried chambering magnum rounds, I had to push them in to get them seated all the way. After cleaning the chambers in the cylinder real good Magnums drop in with no resistance. I think someone had been shooting LR ammo and crudded it up. I thought that a magnum cylinder would indicate somewhere on it that it is “magnum”. It does have the last 3 digits of the serial number etched onto it with a small 2 - indicating second cylinder or 2 cylinders maybe? I don’t suppose anyone knows where I can get a LR cylinder for it?
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Old February 1st, 2020, 09:04 AM   #5
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So you have a magnum cylinder. Old Model 22 LR cylinders are pretty scarce and if you do find one, it may or may not fit your gun. Keep an eye on eBay and Gun Parts, Inc …. now and then one will show up. I would NOT recommend shooting 22 LR ammo in a mag cylinder because cases can rupture and possibly cause injuries.

There is a survival trick that works well when all you have is 22 LR ammo and a 22 Mag cylinder. Cut off the heads of spent 22 Mag cases with a tubing cutter. After trimming up both ends of the spent case, a 22 LR cartridge will just fit inside. You can safely chamber and shoot 22 LRs in these cutoff cases. They tend to last for about 10 times fired before they get too loose. To remove cutoff cases from the chambers, use a bronze bore brush …. it will pull them out easily.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 09:10 AM   #6
 
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The OMSS cylinders were not caliber marked. The easiest way to to confirm which you have is just the way you did. However there is another way as the cylinders are manufactured different.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 09:14 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
..

There is a survival trick that works well when all you have is 22 LR ammo and a 22 Mag cylinder. Cut off the heads of spent 22 Mag cases with a tubing cutter. After trimming up both ends of the spent case, a 22 LR cartridge will just fit inside. You can safely chamber and shoot 22 LRs in these cutoff cases. They tend to last for about 10 times fired before they get too loose. To remove cutoff cases from the chambers, use a bronze bore brush . it will pull them out easily.
Another nugget.....learning has occurred once again.

OP the old model 22Mag cylinders are pretty easy to find but like Iowegan pointed out the 22LR old model cylinders are much more scarce. I've always assumed the 22Mag cylinders are considered the "extra" cylinder, don't get used as much and end up separated and for sale while the 22LR cylinder stays in the gun. Your example being the exception. When 22LR cylinders do show up they fetch quite a bit more than the 22Mag. I've seen them sell for as much as $150 on sites like eBay and GunBroker. You have to watch those places too as the sellers don't always know what they have and can mistakenly list a 22Mag as a 22LR. As you've already discovered the two look pretty much identical by eye. Good luck in your search for the missing cylinder.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 10:18 AM   #8
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Wave, Here's some more 22 rimfire trivia. Virtually all 22 cal revolvers have .225" throats. This applies to 22 LR and 22 Mag alike. You can chamber a 22 LR cartridge "backwards", meaning it will fully chamber from the front face of the cylinder.

As for the above "survival trick" …. it doesn't hurt a thing but if you use this technique on a frequent basis, chances are you bought the wrong gun.
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Old February 2nd, 2020, 06:39 AM   #9
 
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Alright then. I do genuinely appreciate your help. I usually only come to this forum when I need help, but I am glad you are here. I need to find an Old Model LR cylinder for this gun. It is a very clean gun from an older gentleman who recently passed away and left a widow. This was among the collection she is liquidating. I've sent word to her to look for the other cylinder but am not holding my breath. If anyone knows where I can find one, please let me know. thanks
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Old February 2nd, 2020, 07:19 AM   #10
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I once encountered a revolver where the seasoned shootist explained proudly that he converted the magnum to shoot LR by cutting off nickle magnum cases and epoxied them in the cylinder. He said he had been shooting it for many years without a problem.

I passed on the purchase, but years later I have to acknowledge that some epoxy in new barrel liners. Perhaps the theory was sound after all.

I'd rather have the real deal, but one needs to keep such things in the back of the mind. You never know what the future may bring. Survival often depends on your ability to improvise, adapt, and overcome.
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Old February 2nd, 2020, 09:29 AM   #11
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Frontiersman, I never tried epoxy …. I found using a spent 22 Mag cutoff case worked quite well all by itself … the empty 22 LR cases extract easily and leaves the cutoff case in the chamber. Accuracy is exactly the same as when 22 LR ammo is fired from a 22 LR cylinder. When you finish using 22 LR ammo, just clean the chambers with a bronze bore brush and the cutoff cases come right out. Yes, the real deal is better but as you said, sometimes you just have to improvise. The survival trick is not intended for long term use …. just a box of ammo per cylinder, max.
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