A Wheel Gun for Shooters
In today’s frantic world, it’s easy to get blinded by the latest gadgets and guns entering the market. Pause for one second and reflect on the good guns already out there. For me, I’ll take shooting classics every time.
Anything from sending shots downrange with a .22 long rifle or busting clays with an old-trusted shotgun. However, nothing gets the blood pumping like rolling the hammer back on a steel-frame handgun, lining up the sights and watching the shot connect.
This experience hooked me on shooting as a small boy and keeps me hooked to this day.
Growing up, I devoured any information on firearms I could get my hands on, which lead to the addictions I maintain today. Always wanting to know more, I was drawn to the classics. Naturally, I read some great works on sixguns; Elmer Keith, John Taffin and Skeeter Skelton to name a few. These authors were my go to source for the .44 special. I love this round. What’s not to like? It’s a big bore, a classic design and possesses mild recoil. The 44 special cartridge is very soft shooting unlike the big brother 44 magnum. I would liken the recoil of the 44 special to that of the 45ACP cartridge, very slow moving push but an all-around pleasure to shoot. Where the rubber meets, the road is during the testing phases. I’m fortunate to test out all kinds of classics, but this year Lipsey’s generated a .44 special I had to shoot.
Lipsey’s is a firearms wholesaler that generates some unique distributor exclusives from Ruger. Generally, these exclusives are built from standard cataloged items with slight modifications. Variants can be a different caliber, finish, barrel length, stock or all the above. This year they took one of my all-time favorite revolvers, the Ruger GP100 and chambered it in my favorite caliber, the 44 special.
Everything about this revolver oozes that classic coolness. The sight configuration is a flat black adjustable rear with a front gold bead. If that doesn’t scream classic I don’t know what does? The smooth-wood grips feel much thinner in profile than I am used to on similar GP100 guns. These features, coupled with a silk smooth action, make the Lipsey’s exclusive a joy to shoot.
This gun’s classic lines are furthermore highlighted by the deep rich Ruger bluing. Ruger puts my favorite bluing finish on guns in the form of their matte blue. I find this finish to be extremely durable in the elements compared to blued finishes of other manufacturers. This finish also looks great without being too flashy like a highly polished blue.
The five-inch barrel on the GP100 makes for a nice balance. This is just short enough in length that I can justify carrying it as a woods gun but just long enough to practically be cheating on the range. Longer barrels don’t make guns more accurate, but a greater distance between the front and rear sight do. The gun carries nicely in a pancake style holster, mine was made by Rob Leahy at Simply Rugged holsters. I can’t recommend these holsters enough and Rob is a great guy to work with. you forget you are carrying a gun this big because the holster distributes weight very well. With this holster and a nice belt, I would not hesitate to carry this gun all hunting season.
Big bore revolvers are a very American thing in the world of shooting. I can’t find the words to express how it makes me feel when I open a big cylinder, dump in fat cartridges that ring a resounding thud, swing it shut and roll the hammer back. These tactile movements of steel, wood and brass all to end in one big dent on a steel plate or ragged hole in paper are what keep me loving this gun.
Lipsey’s knocked it out of the park on this gun, and you won’t be disappointed in this or any of their offerings. Go to your local dealer, pick up a Lipsey’s exclusive GP100 you wont be disappointed. Stay safe, have fun and shoot straight. ~ Ian
Ian Bradley Johnson
Ian Bradley Johnson is a passionate firearms enthusiast. His gun hobbies include historical military and sporting firearms, hunting and collecting. Johnson is an avid hunter who enjoys travel and experiencing different hunting cultures abroad.