Ruger Collectors' Association Show 2002

by Bill Hamm

photography by Bill Hamm

Ed. Note: In March 2002, our resident Ruger collecting expert Bill Hamm attended the annual Ruger Collectors gun show in Knoxville, Tennessee. The show was sponsored by Bob Pope's Gun Shows. Pope is a member of NRA's board of directors and a great American. His gun shows are among our favorites.

Bill Hamm is a regular exhibitor at Bob Pope's shows, and he took some time from his busy weekend to visit the Ruger collectors, take a few pictures for us, and write brief descriptions of some of the exhibits.

Please let Bob Pope know that you appreciate his encouragement of Ruger collecting by emailing him at or calling him at (615) 793-7364. He will send you a schedule of his upcoming shows for both his Nashville and Knoxville venues. Be sure to ask when the next RCA show will be, you don't want to miss one!

Check out my write-up of the 2001 Ruger Collectors show at RCA Show 2001.

Boge Quinn

The Ruger Collectors' Association is the oldest organization for the Ruger collector and/or enthusiast. Membership includes the Association's sporadically-produced newsletter and invitation to members-only events. For more information (or to apply for an annual membership), write to: Ruger Collectors' Association, Inc., P.O. Box 240, Greens Farms, CT  06436

The Red Eagle News Exchange is a quarterly publication filled with new information, updates, and articles about collecting Ruger firearms and memorabilia. This is an excellent resource for the Ruger collector and/or enthusiast, and the wealth of information sent to new subscribers as a free gift with a paid annual subscription is alone well worth the money. Highly recommended. For more information or to subscribe, write Red Eagle News Exchange (Chad Hiddleson - Editor), 1945 Clover Avenue, Perry, IA  50220, or call (515) 465-2057.


Click the images below to see a larger version.



"Class of Brass" by Lee Sundermeier (Won First Place Advanced) -
Examples of all known factory installed brass grip frame old model Ruger
revolvers and their boxes. Includes one of only 4 or 5 known non-prefix
serial numbered Super Blackhawks, 1 of the 50 produced .41 Magnums with a
4-5/8" barrel and serial number 18, the lowest known serial number Old Army
with a factory installed brass frame.



"Ruger's Middle Magnum" by Don Wilkes - An excellent display of the
several variations, some rare, of the old model Ruger .41 Magnum revolvers.
The first total display of this model of Ruger believed to have been shown
at a theme show.



"Rare Old Models" by Ken Sawyers (Won First Place Intermediate) -
Includes a rare "S" Lightweight Single-Six, "S" Single-Six, factory
installed Brass frames, and the only known factory lettered .357 Flattop
.357/9MM Convertible (Won Best Gun of the Show).



"Rare New Models" by Jeritza Sawyers - Includes consecutive
stainless .45/45ACP convertibles, four of the very rare stainless .357/9MM
convertibles, and four of the rare stainless grip frame Bisley .22 revolver.



"Number 1 Special Models" by John Krukenberg - A display of several
special issue and engraved limited edition Ruger Number rifles, all are new.



"Ruger .357 Flattops" by Bill Hamm - Examples of the major variations
of the Ruger .357 Blackhawk "Flattop", Ruger's first centerfire revolver.
Included serial number 69 which is a rare early high polish gun and one of
the rare 10" eight groove guns with Ruger factory ivory grip panels.



"Single-Sixes in Transition, 1962 - 1963" by Jim Shafer - Examples of
the different variations of the Single-Six when Ruger was changing from the
early configuration with XR3 grip frames, steel ejector rod housings,
dimpled ejector buttons, small serial numbers, varnished walnut grips etc.
to the XR3-RED grip frames, aluminum ejector rod housings, large ejector
buttons, large serial numbers, oiled walnut grips, etc. Known as the
"Changes of '63". Some of these guns are very rare and some are the only
known example.



"There Are No Limits" by Mike Fagen - (Won First Place Novice) - 
Examples of the results of someone's dreams -- special issue and tricked out
Ruger .22 semi-auto pistols and rifles.



"Ruger Bisleys" by Bob Nelson - An example of every variation of the
Ruger Bisley produced to date. Includes the rare fluted cylinder .45 and a
rare 1 of 52 produced "Shootist", an all stainless steel .22 caliber 4-5/8"
barrel made to commemorate Bill Ruger's son Tom, who died from cancer. Tom
was a well-known, well-liked, and respected individual in the gun and shooting


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