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 Ruger Mk II vs. III vs 22/45
Scooter1942  [Team Member]
2/24/2011 1:01:46 PM EDT
I just received word that I have to have a Mk 2 or 3 for an upcoming competition and some suggestion that I need the Gov't model? What is the difference between these models? Is the 22/45 considered a gov't model?

Sorry...I'm a rimfire newb.

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maleante  [Team Member]
2/24/2011 2:49:37 PM EDT
The Mk II and Mk III (as well as the Gov't model) are independent of the 22/45.

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The new Mark II pistols have continued to be as popular among shooters as their predecessors, and several new versions have been added. In 1982 the stainless-steel Mark II autos were announced (all variations of both the Standard and Target versions are currently available in stainless or blued steel), and a 10-inch Bull Barrel Target Model was added to the catalog in 1984-also available in either blued or stainless steel. In 1986 came the Mark II Government Target Model, which can best be described as the "competition-grade" version of the Ruger .22 autoloader line. In essence, this new gun is a 6 7/8-inch Bull Barrel version of the Mark II Target Model with higher profile adjustable sights. It was created to meet U.S. Military specifications for match-grade pistols and was chosen as the standard target and training handgun of the US Armed Forces, replacing earlier models from Ruger and other manufacturers. The civilian version of the Ruger Government Model is identical to the military version except that the "US" stamping over the serial number is not present.

The stainless-steel version of the Government Target Model Mark II was announced at the 1991 SHOT Show, along with a new Standard .22 Pistol Competition Model. The Competition Model is essentially a stainless Government Model with a flat-sided 6 7/8-inch barrel and a unique receiver-mounted base adaptor that encloses the adjustable rear sight and also provides a mounting mechanism for Ruger's scope ring system. The adaptor screw attaches to the top of the pistol's receiver and can be removed should the user wish, leaving the rear sight intact.

The most recent series added to the Ruger .22 pistol lineup is the 22/45 family, introduced in 1993, which blends all the traditional mechanical and operating features of the Ruger Mark I and Mark II .22 pistols with a frame injection molded from glass-filled solid matte black polymer nylon (the same basic material used by Remington for its classic Nylon 66 .22 autoloading rifles and for the XP-100 single-shot pistol). The 22/45 series was Ruger's first polymer-component handgun. It's currently available in stainless fixed-sight Standard format with 4 3/4-inch tapered barrel or stainless 5 1/2-inch bull barrel target style plus a blued 5 1/2-inch bull barrel target model and a unique blued four-inch bull-barrel target version.

This group of guns is called 22/45 because the grip angle and grip configuration is deliberately designed to reproduce the basic shape and feel of the classic Browning/Colt Government Model 1911 .45 auto pistol. Moreover, the magazine release mechanism on this gun has been transformed from the steel-version Ruger Mark II 22s' spring latch at the base of the butt to a one-hand-operable Model 1911-type button just behind the trigger guard on the left side of the frame. Thus the magazines for the 22/45 pistols will not interchange with magazines for Ruger Mark II or Mark I autoloaders, and the polymer buttplates on the 22/45 magazines are configured to meld seamlessly into the bottom configuration of the grip. Also, the 22/45's trigger guard configuration is quite different from either the "Lugeresque" circular style of the steel Ruger autos or the flat oval of the Model 1911. Instead it has a tilted oval shape with a distinct bulge along the rear of its bottom surface and a subtle but definite hook at its lower front that allows the shooter a solid wrap around the front of the trigger guard with the forefinger of the nonfiring hand when using a two-hand hold.

eddiein1984  [Member]
2/26/2011 5:07:29 AM EDT
The MKII and MKIII are the guns with a Luger-esque steel or stainless grip frame.

The MKII has a heal mag release, no internal lock and no loaded chamber indicator.

The MKIII has a button mag release, with a much-hated internal lock and loaded chamber indicator.

The 22/45 (MKII-type) uses the bolt, receiver tube, and barrel of the MKII, but with a nylon grip frame with a 1911 grip angle.

The 22/45 (MKIII-type) uses the bolt, receiver tube (with LCI) and barrel of a MKIII, with a thinner, even more 1911 looking grip frame.

Scooter1942  [Team Member]
2/26/2011 3:40:17 PM EDT
Thanks for the info.

Basically what I'm trying to figure out now, is which Ruger MkIII is the direct replacement for the MkII Gov't Model?
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rex21  [Member]
2/26/2011 6:35:00 PM EDT
There is no direct replacement for the Gov't model. From what I have read they are somewhat rare and expensive. They had a 6 7/8" barrel.
The closest match in the Mk 3's is the Target. Basically the same as the gov't, but with a 5 1/2" barrel.
sixgunner455  [Member]
3/3/2011 12:51:48 PM EDT
If you can find a MKII Gov Target, buy it. You will love it. Friend of mine got one last month for $300. They are out there.
Red-Leg  [Team Member]
3/7/2011 9:33:16 AM EDT
Just get either an MKII or MKIII 22/45 with the 5.5" bull barrel and adjustable sights and you'll be good to go.
eddiein1984  [Member]
3/10/2011 5:20:07 PM EDT
OP: the Government Target Model was just a MKII with a 6 7/8" bull barrel and adjustable sights, and a fancy roll mark that said "Government Target Model." So the direct replacement would be a 6 7/8" MKIII bull barrel, which I don't believe is made at the moment (at least, not without slab sides).

Personally, I would look for a MKII of any variety over a MKIII. They are slowly going up in value and are the best of the three MKs by features vs lawyer bullshit.
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