Most Unusual RUGER Products Ever Made: Hand Drills

Hrachya H
by Hrachya H
Most Unusual Ruger Products Ever Made Ruger Hand Drills (4)

When your company is in a trouble and struggles to survive, you have to come up with unique solutions and make non-standard decisions if you want to save it from bankruptcy. And gun companies are no exception. History knows many examples of gun companies having to make non-gun products to survive the storm and stay afloat. Today’s article is based on a video published by the Rock Island Auction Company and tells about drills made by Ruger.

Most Unusual Ruger Products Ever Made Ruger Hand Drills (1)

Before teaming up with Alexander Sturm and establishing the Sturm, Ruger and Co, William Ruger had already made an attempt of starting a gun business. His first company had some troubles associated with the accomplishment of government contracts and it was close to going bankrupt. As a last attempt to save the company, Bill Ruger tried to enter the tool making business by making hand drills. Unfortunately … or rather fortunately for the gun community, he failed in the tool industry. Later, Bill Ruger partnered with Alexander Sturm and founded the company that we all know today.

Most Unusual Ruger Products Ever Made Ruger Hand Drills (3)

Rock Island Auction Company has three Ruger drills consigned right now. One of them has a straight knurled handled design. Next one has a pistol grip design which is really reminiscent to that of Bill Ruger’s first rimfire pistols. I suspect these were made on the same machinery or used the same forged or cast blanks. The third drill is identical to the one with a pistol grip with the exception of having an engraved grip!

Most Unusual Ruger Products Ever Made Ruger Hand Drills (2)

If you want to learn about the details of this story and the story of Bill Ruger’s company in general, watch the Rock Island Auction Company’s video which you can find embedded below.

These Ruger drills will be auctioned in September 2018 Rock Island Premiere Firearms Auction.

Many thanks to Joel Kolander of Rock Island Auction Company for providing the images used in this article.

Hrachya H
Hrachya H

Managing Editor Being a lifelong firearms enthusiast, Hrachya always enjoys studying the history and design of guns and ammunition. Should you need to contact him, feel free to shoot him a message at

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4 of 22 comments
  • CountryBoy CountryBoy on Jul 21, 2018

    I wonder if the hand drills made by Ruger were as difficult to disassemble and reassemble as the pre-Mk IV Ruger .22 pistols? ;-)

    • See 1 previous
    • Joe Harold Joe Harold on Jul 22, 2018

      @Ruger Shooter I have no problem cleaning my MK3. Not sure what all the fuss is about with cleaning pre MK4 Rugers.

  • Jjackdt Jjackdt on Jul 21, 2018

    I’ve got a couple Mossberg adjustable wrenches from 1900 or so.