Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Includes the Six Series, Red Hawks, Super Redhawks, GP100s and SP101s.
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pwf
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Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:25 pm

Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by pwf » Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:37 pm

Hello all, I am new to this forum.

I have in my possession a blue Police Service Six .38 SPL with a FIVE inch barrel.

From what research I have been able to do on other forums, some time in the mid-1980s Ruger made up a small run of prototype 5" guns for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, who were then thinking about replacing their aging 5" Smith Model 10s. In the end the RCMP went to autos, so no sales were made beyond the initial prototypes.

From what I have found out 150 guns were made, 135 going to the RCMP and some 15 guns from the production overrun ended up being sold on the US market.

I believe I have one of the RCMP guns. However, the serial does not match a list I once saw of the 15 overrun (I once identified some ten serial numbers) nor do I have any idea of the serial range of the guns that actually went to Canada.

I was wondering here if anyone can help me with either the serial numbers or a date of when the RCMP guns were shipped.

Many thanks,


Peter

LIBERTY FOREVER
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:52 pm
Location: Southern Illinois

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by LIBERTY FOREVER » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:51 pm

Hello Peter

I'm also a new member of the RCA and have an interest in Liberty single actions all the double actions especially the odds and ends like you have. My favorite find is the Ruger DA with low back grips and swiveling lanyards. Ruger sent the overruns to RCA for distribution to its members and I was able to pick up some sets in the last few years. I also have a 5" Blue Police Service Six from 1984, SDA-85H serial # 161-18440. It falls outside the designated serial number range of the Ruger Reference below. The one thing I have learned from reading other longtime Ruger collectors is that "never say never" when it comes to Ruger serial numbers or when determining if a particular model is cataloged in a year or not. The Company isn't as interested in the numerical certainty or clarity as many collectors would like it it to be.

To answer your question to the best of my resource material RENE I have a copy of the latest Reference of Ruger Firearms, Volume Two, Double Action Revolvers, Centerfire Pistols and Longuns, 1961 to Present, page 9.

"The SDA-85H. R.C.M.P. contract known s/n range 160-94833 to 161-00030. 150 made (an overrun of 15 were sold to U.S. distributors."


I would like to add another to my collection especially if its a close match to mine. If you decide to sell, email me at genelinks@hotmail.com or send me a PM.
Best, Gene
GENE

COL GENE LINKS
U.S. ARMY IN
Retired 1985-2015

LIBERTY FOREVER

pwf
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Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:25 pm

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by pwf » Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:47 am

Thanks, Gene.

I have been doing some internet searching and, with with the help of fellow owners and now with the inclusion of your gun, I believe I can now identify all 15 of the overrun revolvers.

A September, 1984 memo from GULF STATES Distributors of Montgomery Alabama, lists the following 10 revolvers available for sale (at $190 each!). I have listed these in numerical sequence:

160-98363
160-98826
161-00029
161-00031
161-00032
161-00033
161-00034
161-00035
161-00330
161-97988

In addition, I have been able to identify the following off the internet, often with the help of current owners:

160-94833 As of 2017, in Northern California
160-94838 As of 2017, in Ohio - this gun went to Canada and later returned to the US
161-00030 As of 2010, in Vermont
161-18440 As of 2017, in Illinois
162-19054 As of 2017, in Canada


Apparently, two of the stainless (GF-85H) have been identified:

157-21052 Before 1994, Yazoo City, Mississippi
157-21051 As of 2012, in Vermont


Most of the above information is taken from internet posts and personal messages. The guns identified in 2017 are current as of now, but the earlier guns may have changed hands since the original postings. I own the one in Canada, it must of sat in a safe for over thirty years as it presents as new and unfired.

Hope this is of interest,


Peter
Last edited by pwf on Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

pwf
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:25 pm

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by pwf » Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:56 pm

The above post has been updated to reflect further information received today and correct a typo on the stainless (GF, not GR).

Peter
Last edited by pwf on Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

LIBERTY FOREVER
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:52 pm
Location: Southern Illinois

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by LIBERTY FOREVER » Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:04 pm

Peter
Thank you for the incredible post and information.
Do you have a copy of the "September 1984 memo from GULF STATES Distributors of Montgomery Alabama"?

Gene
GENE

COL GENE LINKS
U.S. ARMY IN
Retired 1985-2015

LIBERTY FOREVER

LIBERTY FOREVER
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:52 pm
Location: Southern Illinois

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by LIBERTY FOREVER » Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:20 am

Peter This is a post by a long time RCA/ROCS member (FT44) who shared these additional two numbers and a short narrative with group on a post we have been running on the RCMP that I purchased beginning when the revolver went up for sale.

"I bought two consecutive serial numbered SDA-85H in October 1998 from a dealer in Nashville, TN. He had purchased 5 of them for resale. I sold the two I bought to a friend some years ago and he recently sold them to another friend of mine. Still NIB. Attaching a copy of the invoice. Different numbers than the list above."
FT44

SDA-85H R. C. M. P. Overrun serial numbers 001.jpg
SDA-85H  R. C. M. P. Overrun serial numbers 001.jpg
GENE

COL GENE LINKS
U.S. ARMY IN
Retired 1985-2015

LIBERTY FOREVER

pwf
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:25 pm

Re: Police Service Six .38 FIVE inch barrel

Post by pwf » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:46 pm

Just to consolidate everything in one post, I have compiled below a summation of information on the Ruger Police Service Six FIVE inch barrel variant (SDA-85H-CM) made for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Note that this summation based on internet postings and in most cases not verified from original sources.

It is believed that in 1984 a special order of 135 blued five inch Police Service Six revolvers were made up as test samples for the RCMP, who were considering replacing their aging 5" Smith Model 10s (in the end, the RCMP decided to convert to automatics in the mid ‘nineties). In addition, there are said to have been five stainless Police Service Six 5” produced; although thought to have been sent to the RCMP, no one is quite sure.

It is believed that Ruger actually assembled a total of 150 revolvers, and some 15 blued guns were made up in an over-run to the RCMP contract. From various internet posts made over the years it has been established that ten of those over-run guns were shipped to GULF STATES Distributors of Montgomery Alabama, likely about August or September of 1984. Another 5 were sold to LAW ENFORCEMENT EQUIP CORP in Nashville, at about the same time.

Spending time on the internet, and with the help of fellow Ruger owners, it is now possible to identify the 15 over-run revolvers. In addition, there are another two revolvers identified that were shipped to Canada.

A September, 1984 memo from GULF STATES Distributors of Montgomery Alabama, lists the following 10 revolvers available for sale (at $190 each!). I have listed these in numerical sequence:

160-98363
160-98826
161-00029
161-00031 000031-00035 a consecutive series owned by one individual,
161-00032 believed in Connecticut in 2010
161-00033 “ “
161-00034 “ “
161-00035 “ “
161-00330
161-97988


In addition, one contributor identified two revolvers sold to LAW ENFORCEMENT EQUIP CORP (LEEC) of Nashville in 1984. LEEC is believed to have bought five from Ruger, so I suspect the others were sold through them as well:

160-94833 As of 2017, in Northern California
160-98538 As of 2017, in Las Vegas (LEEC)
160-98539 As of 2017, in Las Vegas (LEEC)
161-00030 As of 2010, in Vermont
161-18440 As of 2017, in Illinois


Two additional blue SDA-85H have been identified with a direct Canadian connection. One has been imported back into the USA (and has importation marks). The other remains in Canada. This makes me wonder if the over-run exceeded 15 guns with some going to Canada as, from what I hear, the RCMP tended to melt down their surplus:

160-94838 As of 2017, in Ohio - this gun went to Canada and later returned the US
162-19054 As of 2017, in Canada


Apparently, two of the stainless (GF-35H) have been identified:

157-21052 Before 1994, Yazoo City, Mississippi
157-21051 As of 2012, in Vermont


As I stated, much of the above information is taken from older Internet posts and often lacks verification (for those supplying the more recent posts confirming serials, thank you for your help). Cross-matching the posts and serials was a bit of a challenge; there could be errors and, if so, let me know.

I own #162-19054 in Canada; it presents as new and unfired, so it must have sat in someone’s safe for over thirty years.


Peter

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