I am fairly new to the shooting world, but after discussing this book on the forum I was asked about the content. This short review is my opinion of the book.
The author Patrick Sweeney is a gunsmith and reloader, and also writes articles for many mainstream gun magazines. I have read a few magazine articles by Sweeney, but this is the first book I have read that he authored.
The Gun Digest Book of Ruger Pistols is more of a reference than an actual book to be read cover to cover. That is not a criticism, rather a format description, and it is typical of Gun Digest books. Despite the desk reference format, I enjoyed reading the book and found it well written and informative.
The book has six chapters. Chapter one is a virtual tour of the Ruger plant in Newport, N.H. It describes the plant and the process of manufacturing Ruger products. Since Ruger was and is an innovator in modern casting of metals, the information is relevant for Ruger fans.
Chapter two is a summary of all the calibers that Ruger has made over the years, along with a history of each caliber and what it might be used for. This is good reading for the novice, but also can be enjoyable for the old hand who likes firearms history.
Chapter Three describes Ruger semi-auto pistols, and chapter four describes Ruger revolvers. Chapters three and four are divided into sections, and each section is dedicated to a particular Ruger handgun. The model history is detailed along with the reasons for some changes made over the years.
The firearms covered are:
• The Mk I (Mk II, Mk III )
• The P89
• The P90
• The P94
• The P95
• The P345
• The SR9
• The Bearcat
• The Blackhawk
• The Super Blackhawk
• The GP100
• The SP101
• The Redhawk
• The Super Redhawk
• The Old Army
• The Vaquero
• The Convertibles
Chapter five is all about reloading for Ruger handguns. It is relevant information, but I am a firearms "newbie". The reloading data would obviously be of interest for veteran reloaders who own Rugers.
Chapter six details the various Ruger safety mechanisms. This I thought was pretty basic, and probably not worthy of an entire chapter.
My opinion is that this book is a good buy for a gun novice. It is a very good desk reference for the Ruger line of handguns, however the newest handgun models are not included (such as the LCR or SR9).
In summary, the Gun Digest Book of Ruger Pistols may be too basic for veteran shooters and gunsmiths. It is not a technical manual and does not offer any tips for modifying any of the firearms. But for Ruger handgun fans it is interesting reading, and a worthwhile addition to the Gun Digest library of titles. (May 09)
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