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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I used to believe there is no such thing as a stupid question. Hope that's true! :eek:

What is the difference between the two guns? Am I correct is saying the only difference is one is a pistol grip and the other straight-stocked with a different shaped lever?

Help a brother out. :)
 

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The arrangement of attaching the forend is also different between the #1 and #3. The #1 uses a barrel hanger that is attached to the action, and the forend is screwed into that. That allows free floating the barrel.
The #3 doesn't have the barrel hanger, I don't believe- the forend is attached with a barrel band at the front of the #3's forend.
The #1 has a rib on the top of the barrel for attaching scope mounts- the #3 does not.
 

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Also, the model #3's lever doesn't have a lever release "actuator" or the "checkered" stock of the #1s. (The #3 was once offered in a 30/40 Krag, which is rather hard to find and wasn't offered in a #1, to my knowledge!) Either action is equally "strong" with the model #3 being at least a pound lighter than the "lightest" #1 model. It originally came with a metal butt plate, thus one in a 45/70 would "bite you" pretty hard! (The #3 looks like an "updated cavalry" model - too cool!)
 

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The arrangement of attaching the forend is also different between the #1 and #3. The #1 uses a barrel hanger that is attached to the action, and the forend is screwed into that. That allows free floating the barrel.
The #3 doesn't have the barrel hanger, I don't believe- the forend is attached with a barrel band at the front of the #3's forend.
The #1 has a rib on the top of the barrel for attaching scope mounts- the #3 does not.
The No.3 is exactily the same as the No.1, the forearm attaches with the same screw the difference is the barrel band out front. The barrel band is made from some sore of aluminum alloy. and does nothing, just for looks.
The stocks are of a lower grade walnut, straight grain, and as stated no checkering. The operating lever is held in place by a small spring detent.

By the way I just removed my forearm from my No.3 22 Hornet, thats how I know how it go's together. I'm not assuming anything.
 

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Funny thing the Ruger book I have lists my No.1-A as a light sporter with a 22 inch barrel. From the book "Overall length for a 22" barrel rifle at 38 1/2". "

Yet two pages over the No.3 is listed as a carbine. The first comment is " Introduced: 1973 "A modern Rifle in the classic Style. The Same Stromg , Rugged Action as the Ruger No.1 Rifle, with an American Style Lever.""

So when is a 22 inch barrel a rifle and when is it a carbine? And the No.1-A and the No.3 stand muzzle to muzzle in the safe side by side.
 

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I would think that the barrel size will be the deciding factor in interchanging forearms. Other than that the actions are the same so they should fit.
 

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I have a #3 in 22 Hornet. I got it used at a gun shop real cheap. I found out why. The gun wouldn't shoot for crap with any loads, including factory. I wound up trying a Hicks accurizer and it made a big improvement. I hate the forearm with that barrel band and that's why I asked earlier about the interchangability with the #1.
 

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Yes I have. The band is a factor in the accuracy also. It shoots better without it. The Hicks tuner made the big difference though. But the forearm looks ugly without the band. Being the front is milled out for the band to slide on. Hence wanting a #1 forearm to replace it. I can always get a clip on barrel band if I want to use a sling.
 

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I have a No. 3 in .223 and I quickly removed the barrel band. Then I reshaped and finished the forend into something that I liked. Shoots well (10 shots in 1.25 inches, most days).
Yes the action and barrel hanger are the same as the No. 1, except for the lever, lever retaining plunger, and as far as I can determine, no adjustments on the trigger.
As for the debate over carbine or rifle. As far as I remember, the No. 3 was purposely designed to have a nostalgic 'carbine' look, probably vaguely based on the Springfield Trapdoor or the Model 92. That is the reason for the buttstock design with its buttplate and the forend band. Don't get hung up on any definitions of carbine - they are supposed to be lighter and shorter versions of the standard rifle. In the No. 3 case, they were only lighter in .45-70; the .223 is a medium heavy rifle.
 

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I have a #3 in 22 Hornet. I got it used at a gun shop real cheap. I found out why. The gun wouldn't shoot for crap with any loads, including factory. I wound up trying a Hicks accurizer and it made a big improvement. I hate the forearm with that barrel band and that's why I asked earlier about the interchangability with the #1.
One thing we found with the No.3 in .22 Hornet was that it could benefit from tighter headspace usually. At the factory, they sometimes fitted oversized breech blocks to tighten them up. If you reload, you can do the same thing with your ammo. you can either open the necks up to a larger caliber ( I've used a .257 Roberts die a couple of times) and then size them until they just chamber, or try seating bullets out to touch the lands, and fire forming your cases that way. Once the cases fit your gun you have to back off the sizing die so it doesn't push the shoulder back at all. All rimmed cartridges have this issue to some extent because the difference between SAMMI max cartridge, and Minimum chamber can be so large. Treat it like a Contender, and headspace more off the shoulder, and you will be rewarded usually. The barrel band can be taken off to see if that affects things too. The barrel contours are different on the No. 3 than on the No. 1 so you would have to do some bedding to interchange them. Take a close look at the crown on your barrel too........ it might need a touchup. ( a hint here would be to check your headspace, and get Ruger to fix it if it seems on the large side)
 

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I have a #3 in 22 Hornet. I got it used at a gun shop real cheap. I found out why. The gun wouldn't shoot for crap with any loads, including factory. I wound up trying a Hicks accurizer and it made a big improvement. I hate the forearm with that barrel band and that's why I asked earlier about the interchangability with the #1.
Would you like to sell it real cheap?
 

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I had a #3 .45-70 in the early '70's, twice! First time was in a trade and boy was I happy. Took it out to the range with some loads of about 1800 fps and after the first shot off a bench, as I was reaching for my teeth and eyeballs, thought the recoil was rather brisk. Shot it a few more times and that was enough. Carried it home, put it away, and traded it back to the guy I got it from. Several months later I traded for the same gun again, thinking it was just my imagination about the recoil. Same story at the range, so I traded it back for the last time. Sure wish I had it back!
JDL
 

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I spoke with a Ruger rep at the 2003 Single Action Shooting Society Annual Convention, in 2003, about any possibility of Ruger ever bringing back the #3? He told me the cost was so close with making a #1 or #3, and the #3 sold for much less (back then) than a #1, the 'bean counters' at the factory called for ceasing production of the #3, as it was not economical feasable. He said he doubted Ruger would ever produce the #3 again?

Now if one of them independant distributor's ordered enough #3's, Ruger might just make up a batch? Though both concepts seem slim n' none for happening?

A #3 is more-so like the old Springfield Trapdoor Carbine, in appearance (yes, I know there's no external hammer, but . . . ), and is handier to haul around than a #1 (yes, the #1a is handy, but this is my opinion here lads).

I've a few #3's, but no #1's. I just prefer the #3 for a variety of reasons.
I've had one rebored from .223 to .257 Roberts (what a grand caribou iron that one made); and one .223 rebored to .308 WCF (LOTS of .308 ammo around)(and it's a dandy round unto its ownself); one still remains as a .30-40 Krag, complete with a receiver (peep) sight, and finds itself accompanying me on many a woods outing (10.0 grs of Unique behind a Speer 100 gr Plinker bullet does about 1500+ fps, and is a joy to use).

I always keep my eye-pans peeled for #3's, in my travels, but really don't bother looking for #1's hardly at all. Now the #1 is just fine, and if one in 9.3x74mm should come my way someday, I'd be rather pleased giving it a home, to say the least . . .

If you 'think' you'd like a #3, then by all means, don't let a good chance to buy one slip past you in your wanderings, as they're getting harder n' harder to find...
enjoy
 

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I have both a No.1 Tropical .375 H&H and a No. 3 .22 Hornet. Yes the forearms are interchangable. Just for grins I installed the wood off of the No. 1 onto the No.3 and it transformed to looks of the No. 3, of course the barrel channel was too big but holy cow did the No. 3 look good.

As for the accuracy of the No.3 .22 Hornet factory loads totally suck you have to work up a load for it and I am here to tell it was a royal pain in the butt. Note I said "a load" the 22 Hornet is very limited in what you can do with it by hand loading. Here is what I did. first off you have to use Remington cases they hold a little more powder then the Winchester case. forget IMR 4227 use instead Winchester 296. On the No. 3 the throat is fairly long and because it is a single shot you do not have to worry about feeding from a magazine. Make up a cartridge minus powder and primer and press the bullet loosely into the case. Press this into the chamber to determine the maximum length, look for the rifling marks on the bullet. When this is determined back off just enough to have enough case to hold the bullet tightly. Doing this will free up roughly 1 1/2 grains of powder space. Because of the 1 in 16 twist the No.3 used nothing above a 50 grain bullet will stabilize but you have to try them first. The Nosler Spitzer solid base boat tail bullet would shoot just fine and into inch sized groups at a 100 yards, the same bullet in a hollow point which was just a little longer would keyhole. I finally settled on the 45 grain Hornady which is now called the 45 Hornet. 13 grains of 296 and the 45 grain Hornady would do just under and inch at a hundred yards. As I pointed out above the dimensions of the cartridge will prevent it from fitting in any rifle with a magazine it is just too long. It took me several hundred rounds to come up with this load. I wish the No.3 had been fitted with a barrel that had a 1 - 14 twist. A short time after I purchased My No.3 Ruger added the 223 Remington to the available chamberings, had the 223 been available when I purchased my No.3 that is what I would have purchased. I have over 3000 rounds through my No.3 to date and I have learned to live with the limitations of the .22 Hornet. A cartridge I have alway wanted in a No.3, or a No.1 is the 25/20 Winchester for a light "pest, or pelt" cartridge it is a sweetie.

At the time I purchased the .22hornet I handled a No.3 chambered in the 30-40 Krag I wish I had purchased it. Loaded in this strong action the Krag gives up nothing to the 30/06. In the beginning the No.3 was chambered in the .22 hornet, 30-40 Krag, and the .45/70.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The 3040 Krag looks like a good round, but I probably couldn't justify it since I'm Canadian. If I'd go with an "obsolete" military round, I think I am required to get a .303 British. :p

In a No. 3 I'd get the .45-70 if I could find one.

Thanks for the info.
 
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