Taurus USA reenters Cowboy Action Pistol Market, Acquires Heritage Manufacturing

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Taurus USA has acquired Heritage Manufacturing, a Floridian manufacturer specializing in old west style single action revolvers. Heritage main product line is their Rough Rider .22 LR/Mag combo revolver although they also make single action revolvers chambered in .32 H&R Mag, .45 LC and .357 Magnum.

Heritage is a good fit for Taurus. Heritage is also based in Florida. They both produce revolvers at the budget price point. Taurus USA exited the cowboy action pistol market a few years ago when they discontinued the Taurus Gaucho. By all accounts the Gaucho had a number issues. The Heritage Rough Rider competed directly with the Gaucho, with the former being considered a better gun.

It should be noted that Taurus, via. their Rossi band, import lever action rifles and shotguns popular with cow boy action shooters.

Rough Rider .22 LR/Mag 6.5″ Simulated Case Hardened Finish
Rough Rider .22 LR/Mag Satin Finish
Rough Rider .375 Magnum



Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • ahil925

    It was my understanding that Pietta out of Italy made the parts for Heritage’s .357 and .45s and Heritage assembled and finished them. I wonder if/how this acquisition is going to change HMs relationship with Pietta.

    I’m really hoping that Taurus USA doesn’t screw up Heritage, I do like their cheap little .22 plinkers.

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/ Steve (The Firearm Blog)

      That is interesting! hmm….I wonder what that means for Taurus, Heritage and Pietta.

      I assume they will continue importing from Pietta. I wonder if they will start doing more import from Italy.

    • James

      I have the Heritage .357 with 5.5 inch barrel. It is a Piatta gun, for the most part, with a Heritage finish and tuning. Not sure what is what, but the barrel is stamped Piatta, for example. I assume all the major milled parts come from Italy. Can’t say about springs, etc. Haven’t had it long enough to have problems. It is tight and very accurate, and superbly balanced. I am not CAS, so I won’t be shooting it that much, but I am very familiar with single-action revolvers, and I love this one. So thus far I’ve got no complaints and not doubts that it will go bang when I drop the hammer and hit what I’m aiming at. Glad I got it, and a nice belt and holster from Heritage, as well. I guess we’ll see what we’ll see ;-).

  • http://ak-adventurer.net/ Ak-adventurer

    I have a feeling Heritage just died. Not that Taurus is terrible, but…. Changing hands when you’ve got something good going is usually Not a good move.

  • james

    The rough rider 22 combo guns are pretty decent for less than $200 but I’m a little annoyed that I’ve already had to buy 3 new hands for mine… the stupid little intergrated flat hand spring keeps breaking. It wouldn’t be so bad if the spring was seperate but I have to buy a whole new hand each time the spring breaks. I treat my guns well but the truth is if you shoot a rough rider eventually the hand spring will break.

  • Jim March

    I’ve heard the same thing about the centerfire variants. They’re also the only known Pietta revolvers with transfer-bar ignitions…so…they’re basically the same gun as the old Gaucho except they can’t possibly be as stenchfully bad as the Gauchos :). Put another way: this is Pietta’s answer to the Beretta Stampede and Ruger NewVaq.

    Gunblast seemed to like ‘em…

    http://www.gunblast.com/WBell_HeritageBigBore.htm

    It’s very possible Taurus wants this gun to replace the horrorshow that was the Gaucho. I can see them taking the Pietta parts-source deal in-house, re-releasing ‘em under the Taurus brand name and then leaving Heritage intact to focus on the rimfires that they designed in-house and do respectably well with.

    If I was Taurus, this is what I’d do.

    • ese hombre

      Taurus like other gun importers have to comply with BATF rules that require an additional safety to be installed on any of their weapons to be soldn in the U.S.. This ruling was pushed by American gun manufactures to thwart competition. So those goofy safety’s are not put there because they want to. Now that Taurus bought an American company they can produce SAA without those stupid safety’s.

  • http://www.nylonrifles.com Gary

    The Heritage single action 22 revolver I have is a piece of junk. The question is dump it on some unsuspecting rube or cut it up into pieces?

    • dodongo

      cut down the barrel to one inch with a hacksaw

  • George

    I must be the minority, because my Gauco stainless .45 runs like a dream. Accurate, exc balance and no issues so far. I admit to having had issues with the PT145, but otherwise all good.

    • ese hombre

      No, you are not in the minority. You are in the majority that do mot have any issues. It is the minority that have the issues. Taurus sold hundreds of Gauchos yet I do not see hundreds for sale. A few got those lemon. Just like buying that one car that turned out to be a disaster.

  • Doc J

    Having several Gauchos of different barrel lengths in .357 and .45, all of which have always functioned flawlessly, and, in my experience, are tigher fit and faster handling than the vaunted Ruger Vaquero, I am constantly bewildered by reports of inferior quality. I’d like to find another 7 1/2″ stainless Gaucho in .357, but Gauchos of all types have virtually dried up on all of the auction sites. People who have them and know how good they are, and that they will not be made again, must be hanging on tightly to what they have.
    In my opinion, Taurus should have stayed with the Gaucho.

    • ese hombre

      This negative additude towards Taurus and Rossi is not new. The American gun owner has always been wary of new additions to the gun market. I’m sure Samuel Colt met resistant with his new fangled gun that held more than one round. Rossi is not new to controversy. Back in the 1980’s when I got into gun ownership the Rossi lever actions were considered garbage by unknowledgeable gun owners. A fire in a gun shop was even blamed on a Rossi. But look now at Rossi. During that same time Italian gun makers were considered inferior as well until an article in American Rifleman had a positive story on them. American gun owners basically are worse than a bunch of old women spreading gossip. I stopped listening to the idiots at gun shows and gun shops. Do you listen to the advise from a car salesmen when you go to buy a car or to a auto mechanic? Even then the auto mechanic maybe bias to one make or another. I’m bias as well towards Ruger. Not for their workmanship but from the politics of old man Ruger. It is said the best thing to happen to Ruger is Bill Ruger dying. A few years ago many wrm chair commandos were bashing Rossi for their model 92 lever action rifle in 454 Casull. Well, here it still is. Why did they bash Rossi? Simply they were Marlin enthusiasts and consider the Marlin action as the most robust. Unfortunately the Marlin cannot handle the pressures from the 454 Casull. I’ve what I read the Rossi haters have been silent on this issue. Hundreds if not a few thousand of Gauchos have been sold. You only hear of the few that have had issues. What about those hundreds/thousands of Gauchos with no issues? I listen to the silent majority instead of the vocal whiney gun owner.