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Old 05-15-2018, 11:18 AM
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REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89  
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Default REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89

I've been sitting at home recuperating from major surgery, and thereís not a lot Iím able to do these days. I canít drive, Iím not allowed to lift anything over ten pounds, Iím basically just stuck here at home. Iím sure a lot of you know the drill.

Anyway, I got a bright idea, Iíll look through my holster box (Everyone has a holster box, right?) and see if I can find anything useful in there! I started looking through the many years of accumulated holsters and came across a Left-Handed Bianchi Gunleather TM 22 AUTO #89 Holster that I remember purchasing some time in the mid nineteen-eighties at one of the Amon Carter Exhibit Hall Gun Shows in Ft. Worth, TX, when I was still living in the Dallas area. I had purchased this holster hoping it would fit a High Standard Trophy 107 Series with 5 ĹĒ Barrel. It didnít fit, and the Trophy and its Citation brother are both long gone. Back to the holster. The holster still had the original gun show price tag, $20, and if I recall correctly, I ended up paying $15 for it all those years ago. I pulled the holster out of its original package and began looking through my various guns to see if I had anything that would come close to fitting.

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About two years ago I had purchased a used but like new 50th Anniversary Ruger Standard .22 Automatic Pistol.

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This turned out to be just about a perfect fit! What a deal, a use for a holster in my holster box! Never give up hope!

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By the way, the Ruger Standard .22 Automatic Pistol has turned out to be one of my absolute favorite Rugers! It shoots to point of aim, and its not the least bit ammunition sensitive, like so many .22 pistols seem to be!

[IMG][/IMG]

If youíve made it this far, thank you for reading my post about a beautifully made holster from a truly different era, and a pistol that Iím very happy to have a holster for!
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Old 05-15-2018, 02:42 PM
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Good find. I'm looking for the same holster, right-handed, for a Government Target Model.
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Old 05-16-2018, 05:40 PM
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REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89 REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89  
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It's not 'repurposed': the 89L was moulded to the bull barrel Ruger 22 auto :-). The entire reason for the odd shape of the welt at the mouth, is to allow it to accommodate all the 22 autos of the era. We did something similar for 380 autos eventually, for the same reason.

That's quite a pristine 'oldie' Ruger; I understand that Bill Ruger changed from the red medallion to black when Sturm died. And THAT was a long time ago.
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Old 05-16-2018, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by rednichols View Post
It's not 'repurposed': the 89L was moulded to the bull barrel Ruger 22 auto :-). The entire reason for the odd shape of the welt at the mouth, is to allow it to accommodate all the 22 autos of the era. We did something similar for 380 autos eventually, for the same reason.

That's quite a pristine 'oldie' Ruger; I understand that Bill Ruger changed from the red medallion to black when Sturm died. And THAT was a long time ago.
The Red Label on the Ruger is for the 50th Anniversary Model, so it's not that old. It was manufactured in 1999.

I'm curious though; would you happen to know the approximate years the Bianchi 22 AUTO#89 Holster was manufactured? As I stated in the O.P., I purchased the holster new in the mid nineteen-eighties, but there's no telling how long the original dealer had the thing in his inventory before I purchased it.

Thanks for any information you may be able to provide.
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:33 PM
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The Red Label on the Ruger is for the 50th Anniversary Model, so it's not that old. It was manufactured in 1999.

I'm curious though; would you happen to know the approximate years the Bianchi 22 AUTO#89 Holster was manufactured? As I stated in the O.P., I purchased the holster new in the mid nineteen-eighties, but there's no telling how long the original dealer had the thing in his inventory before I purchased it.

Thanks for any information you may be able to provide.
Stopping short of going through all my Bianchi catalogues, the images I have scanned into my library indicate the holster started out as the 22 auto version of the No. 88 in 1968 (so a cutout for the trigger); became the No. 89 in the familiar profile by 1970 (so might be in the '69 catalogue of which I don't have a full copy); from recollection it became the No. 89L with sight rails when the suede lining was added; and by 1979 had become the No. 89L that you have, with the metal-reinforced sight channel (so could have appeared earlier).

Signing off again for awhile.
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:40 PM
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REPURPOSED BIANCHI 22 AUTO #89-79-7-jpg

As noted, from the 1979 catalogue.

There was a period in which we did not exactly cover ourselves in glory, during which the No. 89L had added the suede lining but had no sight rails (and no sight channel as in yours). We added the rails when a holster actually came back with a High Standard Trophy still in the holster and its front sight firmly hooked through the suede lining. The lining's glue had been loosened by the oil we apply/applied for colour, and creating a bubble of leather, the hooked sight was acting as if it had caught a big bass.

Bear in mind that everyone in the biz was trying to get their head around target sighted pistols being carried in holsters. Neale's nominal effort at Safariland notwithstanding (lots of failures of that second set of stitching that replaced the forward fold) the pistols were not designed by their makers to be holstered; so the front sights weren't ramped accordingly.
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Old 05-16-2018, 10:40 PM
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Thanks so much for the replies Red!
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