Rifling Repair on Super Blackhawk?

Thread starter #1

StanB1

Senior Member
I’ve got a 1976 Super Blackhawk, with the “Made in the 200th Year of American Liberty” stamped into the barrel. Had a trigger job done, and I really like the gun. I’ve shot a lot of handloads through it, including some hand loaded birdshot shells. In an ignorant stupor one day, I loaded 3 steel ball bearings into a Speer shot capsule and fired it. Couldn’t tell you where those steel balls hit, but it wasn’t anywhere near where I was aiming. After that, I noticed signs of substantially higher pressures when shooting 200 Gr JHP’s. Checked the barrel, and sure enough, there is a spot where one of the lands is a little deformed. Stopped using the gun.

Question is: is this a case of replacing the barrel? I’d rather not, due to the stamping on it. Or can the rifling be re-cut? And is this a job for Ruger only, or are there shops that can do it?

When you quit shaking your head and chuckling (don’t blame you), appreciate your input. Thanks.
 
Thread starter #3

StanB1

Senior Member
you mean the wider part and not narrow grove or the cut rifling?
Thanks for the reply. Let me clean the barrel and I think I can get a pic.
 
Thread starter #4

StanB1

Senior Member
you mean the wider part and not narrow grove or the cut rifling?
Photos show damaged rifling. Just so we’re speaking the same language, lands are the raised, smaller ID part of rifling that leave indentations in the fired bullet; grooves are larger ID part of the rifling. I was thinking if a cutting tool matching dimensions of originally used by Ruger were drawn through the barrel, it would cut away the excess metal at the edges of the damaged lands. This excess material is an obstruction, slowing the bullet and raising pressures. There are several spots showing damage. Appreciate any input.

4B6F6993-A258-488A-8687-EC0A4AF97F67.jpeg 47BD7C56-007A-46C0-AAE7-00FAB4F0A221.jpeg
 

Darkhorse

Senior Member
I would contact Ruger about it. So far customer service has been great the couple of times I've needed it.
 
Thread starter #8

StanB1

Senior Member
I would contact Ruger about it. So far customer service has been great the couple of times I've needed it.
Yep, Ruger customer service can assess the damage and suggest the best course of action....
Thanks, guys. Looks like that’s what I’ll do. Don’t want a barrel change, but if that’s what it takes..... I’d rather have a working gun than a paperweight.
 

Jester896

Senior Member
they are some really good pictures...I keep looking and wondering if it could be lapped out....maybe one of the gunsmiths will speak up.

one (bottom) looks like it could be
 
Thread starter #10

StanB1

Senior Member
they are some really good pictures...I keep looking and wondering if it could be lapped out....maybe one of the gunsmiths will speak up.

one (bottom) looks like it could be
Cell phone pics. I was surprised myself.
Yes, I was hoping a competent local smith (is there any other kind?) might have the equipment to touch it up and take off the rough edges. The problem as I see it is the expanded edged of the lands. I don’t think indentations would cause a problem. Not the ends of the world, just want to save it from the scrap heap and keep an heir from getting hurt when I croak.
 

Jester896

Senior Member
the one on the bottom isn't that bad IMO...but I ain't a smith....I don't think it would let much around it or break the seal much....or interfere much....I've seen spots in rifle barrels bigger that that do nothing that noticeable in hunting situations.

both of these look center of barrel?
 

rayjay

Senior Member
I think you are screwed. If it was a 30 cal I would try shooting a few steel jacketed bullets through it and see what happens. I don't know where you would get steel jacketed 44 cal bullets. Does Hornady make TSX in 44 ??? Probably wouldn't do any different than normal jacketed hunting bullets.
 
Thread starter #13

StanB1

Senior Member
the one on the bottom isn't that bad IMO...but I ain't a smith....I don't think it would let much around it or break the seal much....or interfere much....I've seen spots in rifle barrels bigger that that do nothing that noticeable in hunting situations.

both of these look center of barrel?
No, they’re at different points along the barrel. I’m not concerned with a little gas blow-by, as I don’t think that would be a safety issue. What does happen is that the pin which holds the cylinder in place, held by a spring detent, starts to back out. If it were to back out too far, the rear of the pin would disengage from its recess in the back of the frame, and the cylinder would become misaligned with the barrel. Next shot would be a disaster. I think upon firing, the bullet hits flared and cratered areas of the damaged spots, and, due to increased friction, the pressure rises quickly. I’ll send it back to SRCo. Thanks for the interest and comments.
 
Thread starter #15

StanB1

Senior Member
These people make what would be required to clean up the barrel, I don't know if it would be possible to do it yourself or not ? I believe you will need what they reference as a combination button, one that will clean up the rifling and the bore?

http://dmetool.com/products/rifle-buttons-mandrels/
Thanks. Looks promising. I’ll have to contact them and describe my situation and ask if it could be a DIY project for someone with the mental capacity to shoot a shot capsule of steel ball bearings. Appreciate the info.
 
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