I think everyone loves a .22
sixgun. The Ruger Single-Six and Colt Scout have been
enormously popular. Those are both 7/8th scale to the
Peacemaker though. They were shrunk just a touch, which
is sensible enough from purely an
There is some appeal in having a full
size SAA in .22 to compliment a fella's stable of
centerfire sixguns. But only a few
makers offered such a beasty over the years.
Some how or another, I ended putting
together a representative collection of full size SAA's.
Here's a rundown of each model (in progress).
Hy Hunter / Hawes
Having been a Great Western Arms
distributor, Hy Hunter went to West Germany in 1959 to have
his own sixgun made by JP Sauer. These
revolvers would become better known as 'Hawes', which is
the name Hunter's company would take in the latter 60's.
He sold enormous amounts of them, and they remain quite easy to find
on the used market.
The Hunter / Hawes centerfires were
all steel. The .22s were alloy with steel cylinder and
barrel sleeves. The full size JP Sauer pattern sixguns
were robust and well built but they are usually not
lookers. No factory time was spent polishing or
getting edge to edge fit on components.
INTER CONTINENTAL ARMS / EMF
The Dakota was an SAA pattern revolver associated with
EMF for over 3 decades now (Though first
offered by Inter Continental Arms). It was
contract produced by Italian makers Jager, Hammerli, Armi San Marco, and Uberti.
Jager built the most Dakotas
in .22. These are heavy, robust revolvers that did not
substitute light alloys for steel.
As one of the first foriegn Colt knock-offs,
we might remember the Dakota line for being more cheaply
finished and constructed than they actually are. I
haven't actually seen one that wasn't vibrantly blued and well
This Dakota was made by Jager in
IAR / EMF 1873
IAR was a boutique importer of
Italian replica's. They had a niche line-up of offerings
for a time. In the mid 1990's they sold a .22
sixgun built on Armi San Marco's SAA replica platform.
This was the same platform used for EMF's Hartford
line. The IAR model has a subtle EMF rollmark as
well. It was probably imported with some cooperation
The IAR Frontier
was exclusively 4 3/4 inch barreled with blue and
case-hardened finish. Grip assembly was black
nickled. A faux inspectors cartouche appeared on the
These were reviewed with positive
remarks in the American Rifleman in November 1996. I
don't expect they were sold in great numbers. They'd be
scarce, but nor are they terrificly sought after. Very