My son just acquired a 1959 model Ruger Mark I (the original version or "old style"). I came with a flap carry holster branded U.S. with an oblong circle around it reminiscent of the U.S. Calvary logo. This makes me think that is was originally issued to the Army as many were for training purposes. The pistol and holster appear to be of the same age.The pistol appears to have been well cared for but much of the bluing has been lost to the holster. There is no apparant damage to it however the magazine release spring is weak and should be replaced. In talking with Ruger, the spring is available but will require the purchase of a new magazine since they have been redesigned a bit. Therefore we are limited to one original mag with an inadequate spring. We would have to change to the newer style if we wanted to have more than one mag and a workable spring unless we can find someone to fabricate the original spring and perhaps find more mags in time.We would appreciate anything you could tell us about it including it's value any counsel regarding the preservation of it. One thing we were thinking of is having it re-blued. In the published manuel, that cost was $15.00 but I expect that it is a bit more now.Best regards XXXXX XXXXX all.SteverJ
N/A with the exception of talking with Ruger.
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX X would like to help you with your questions.First, as to the magazines... I believe there are still some of the old style magazine still available. Here is one place you can get them from:http://www.midwayusa.com/product/197678/ruger-magazine-ruger-mark-i-old-style-22-long-rifle-9-round-steel-blueI also looked at Numerich Arms (http://www.gunpartscorp.com/), a company noted for having replacement parts for a lot of older guns. They appear to be out of stock at the moment on both the magazines and the springs. I am unsure as to whether they will have them in the near future or not. However, they are a great resource for parts for you gun if you need them.In the interest of a complete answer, a good gunsmith would also be able to manufacture a replacement spring. Frankly, though, the cost would FAR exceed what it is worth. But it is possible.Unfortunately, I am mobile at the moment and I don't have my valuation books with me. I will get you a value when I get back to home base later today. A quick look at the a few auction sites show them being listed for about $300-$400 in very good to excellent condition.Finally, rebluing... Up front, I want to let you know that if you do reblue the gun, it will destroy much of whatever the collector's value of the gun. If your intent is to sell the gun for as much as it might be worth, then do not reblue. However, if you want to restore it to pristine condition for your own edification, then rebluing is a good thing. Just make sure you pick a reputable rebluing outfit, or, better yet return it to the factory for rebluing (factory rebluing is slightly more acceptable to a collector). Checking with Ford's Gun Refinishing (http://www.fordsguns.com/) they are showing between $150 and $275 to reblue the gun, depending on how lustrous you want the finish.I hope that helped. I will get back to you on the true valuation, but I don't expect it to differ much than what the spot check I listed will give you. Thank you for using JustAnswer!
Thanks for the good information Pat. I look forward to your further reply but don't feel hurried.
Regarding the magazines, as far as collector value is concerned, will it matter if we convert to the later style? We wish to preserve its' value and respect it for what it is to our history so your comments in that regard were very helpful.
Additionally, can you comment on our assumption of the military history which is mostly founded upon the holster and its' validity?
Regarding condition, it has been to the range once and performed flawlessly but I don't know how too judge it's condition with respect to its' finish and factoring in its' age.
So far you are exceeding my expectations so thank you very much.
If the gun, itself, is not affected or the change to the gun is reversible, then convert, keep the old magazines and/or old parts. You can then change it back to the old style if you desire.As far as military history, the holster is a tenuous connection. There is no way to tell if the gun/holster are a matched set or one of the previous owners of the gun found the holster somewhere and thought it would go well with the gun. One of the things that you could do is contact Ruger's Record Dept. directly:411 Sunapee Street Newport, NH 03773 Telephone:(NNN) NNN-NNNNbr/> Fax:(NNN) NNN-NNNNbr/>Ask them if you can get a factory letter for your gun. A factory letter will give you the complete information that Ruger has regarding when the gun was made, what the configuration was when it left the factory and usually includes who the gun was shipped to, either a dealer or before 1968, possibly an individual. If the factory letter indicates that it was shipped to the military, that should confirm it. Keep the letter with the gun. Even if it is not military, there is a bit of additional collector appeal in having a factory letter. The last time I heard, Ruger was able to provide these letters free of charge. This is NOT the case with most gun manufacturers that do charge anywhere from a nominal fee to outrageous. However, Ruger's might have change (or will change in the future).If you are not used to judging a firearm's condition it can be difficult. Here are the criteria the NRA uses in judging guns:-============================================-
NRA MODERN GUN CONDITION STANDARDS:
NEW: Not previously sold at retail, in same condition as current factory production.
PERFECT: In New condition in every respect. (Note: Many collectors & dealers use "As New" to describe this condition).
EXCELLENT: New condition, used but little, no noticeable marring of wood or metal, bluing perfect, (except at muzzle or sharp edges).
VERY GOOD: In perfect working condition, no appreciable wear on working surfaces, no corrosion or pitting, only minor surface dents or scratches.
GOOD: In safe working condition, minor wear on working surfaces, no broken parts, no corrosion or pitting that will interfere with proper functioning.
FAIR: In safe working condition but well worn, perhaps requiring replacement of minor parts or adjustments which should be indicated in advertisement, no rust, but may have corrosion pits which do not render article unsafe or inoperable.
Ex-Cop & Dept. Cert. Firearms Inst., Ex-FFL Dealer, Reloader
Thanks Pat, you have done a more than thorough job for me.
Thank you! I am glad I was able to help.And, as promised, here are the valuations:Excellent: $350Very Good: $275Good: $125Fair: $100Poor: $85Thank you for using JustAnswer. Good luck with the gun.