Sturm, Ruger & Company, Incorporated is a Southport, Connecticut-based firearm manufacturing company, better known by the shortened name Ruger. Sturm, Ruger produces bolt-action, semi-automatic, full-automatic, and single-shot rifles; shotguns; semi-automatic pistols; and single-action and double-action revolvers. Ruger is the fourth largest firearms manufacturer in the United States, and the only one producing firearms in all four market segments: rifles, shotguns, semi-automatic pistols, and revolvers.
Sturm, Ruger & Company was founded by William B. Ruger and Alexander McCormick Sturm in 1949 in a small rented machine shop in Southport, Connecticut. Just prior to their partnership, Bill Ruger had successfully duplicated two Baby Nambu pistols in his garage, from a captured Nambu that he acquired from a returning US Marine, at the close of World War II. When it came to designing their first auto pistol, Ruger decided to incorporate the looks of the German 9mm Luger and the American Colt Woodsman into their first commercially produced .22 caliber pistol (see Ruger Standard), which became so successful that it launched the entire company.
many believe that the Mark 1 was a direct copy of a Nambu, but when they were designing the Standard, the Luger was the main point of reference for the body of their new pistol. The only design that was used off the Nambu was the action.
Ruger is a dominant player in the .22 rimfire rifle market in the U.S., due primarily to the sales of its Ruger 10/22 semiautomatic rifle. The 10/22 is very popular due to being relatively inexpensive and of good quality as well as the wealth of aftermarket accessories and parts available for it. In fact, the availability and variety of aftermarket parts makes it possible to build a 10/22 using only aftermarket parts, most of which are marketed to target shooters at premium prices.
Ruger similarly dominates the .22 rimfire semi-auto pistol market with the Ruger MK II and Ruger MK III. Like the 10/22, the MkII is extremely well supported with a wide variety of good aftermarket accessories.
Ruger Casting has plants in Newport, New Hampshire and Prescott, Arizona, making ferrous, ductile iron and commercial titanium castings. Ruger Golf makes steel and titanium castings for golf clubs made by a number of different brands.
Sturm, Ruger stock has been publicly traded since 1969, and became a New York Stock Exchange company in 1990 (NYSE:RGR). After Alex Sturm’s death in 1951, William B. Ruger continued to direct the company until his death in 2002.
From 1949 through 2004, Ruger manufactured over 20 million firearms, and currently offers models for hunting, target shooting, self-defense, collecting, and law enforcement.
After a spate of high profile shootings and incidents with the Ruger Mini-14 rifle, along with the popularity the Mini 14 had gained with militias and extremist movements during the late 1970s and 1980s, William B. Ruger expressed a highly unpopular position (amongst firearms owners, users and enthusiasts) by stating his personal views on the "sporting" nature of certain firearms. In his letter to members of the House and Senate on 30 March 1989, Ruger stated (in what has come to be known as "The Ruger Letter"):
"The best way to address the firepower concern is therefore not to try to outlaw or license many millions of older and perfectly legitimate firearms (which would be a licensing effort of staggering proportions) but to prohibit the possession of high capacity magazines. By a simple, complete, and unequivocal ban on large capacity magazines, all the difficulty of defining "assault rifles" and "semi-automatic rifles" is eliminated. The large capacity magazine itself, separate or attached to the firearm, becomes the prohibited item. A single amendment to Federal firearms laws could prohibit their possession or sale and would effectively implement these objectives."
In addition to the furor from the National Rifle Association caused by "The Ruger Letter", Ruger made additional comments during an interview with NBC network's Tom Brokaw that angered the NRA further, saying: "no honest man needs more than 10 rounds in any gun…" and "I never meant for simple civilians to have my 20 and 30 round magazines…". It has long been Ruger's policy to limit sales of those items to Law Enforcement or Military purchasers.
This position, coming from an important firearms manufacturer such as Ruger, caused outrage in some segments of the shooting sports community and led some to boycott Ruger's products.
"The Ruger Letter" is widely believed to be the genesis for those parts of legislation that were drafted 5 years later in the now defunct Assault Weapons Ban which prohibited the manufacture of any magazines holding over 10 rounds of ammunition for civilian sale, except to the motion-picture industry, which Ruger continued to pursue. It should be noted, however, that Mr. Ruger actually had advocated a 15 round limit.
After the death of William B. Ruger in July 2002 and the sunset of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban in September 2004, the company has retreated from its historical position of limiting sales of these magazines to citizens. Ruger now offers its twenty and thirty round magazines to the general public as well as firearms that would have been banned under the bill indirectly supported by Ruger, including a modified AR-15 pattern rifle.
Ruger breaks down their products into four main categories: rifles, shotguns, semi-automatic pistols, and revolvers.
Ruger No. 1
Ruger Mini Thirty
Ruger Police Carbine (discontinued)
Ruger Deerfield Autoloader (discontinued)
Ruger 96 (.22 caliber model 96/22 discontinued)
All semi autos: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruger_P_series#P85.2FP85_MKII
Ruger Standard (MK I) (discontinued)
Ruger MK II (discontinued)
Ruger MK III
Security Six (discontinued)
Service Six (discontinued)
Speed Six (discontinued)
Old Army (discontinued)
Change that you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun!
Ruger is one of my favorite gun makers.The 10/22 rifle is a fixture in my house with my 2 oldest kids each having one.Someday I will own a Mark I,II,or III pistol.Until then I have my HI Standard which is influenced by Ruger.I aint into Ruger rifles of centerfire persuasion but they do what they are made to do just fine.Good post LBC.
"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." --Cesare Beccaria, On Crimes and Punishment, quoted by Thomas Jefferson in Commonplace Book