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Some 30 years ago, I purchased a Ruger Mark1 (Mk1) Target pistol. It came with adjustable sights and a 6 7/8" tapered barrel. While I shot it a lot some 3 decades ago, it doesn't see as much use these days. Regardless, it will never be sold as long as I have anything to say about it.
One thing I notice in the gun forums is the whining by some folks about how difficult it is to take the Ruger Mark1 (or any of the newer models) apart for cleaning. While it isn't as easy as field stripping a Colt 1911 or my Springfield XD, it isn't exactly difficult either. The biggest complaint seems to come when having to reassemble the pistol. Folks, it isn't that hard and compared to many firearms, it is in fact quite easy. The owners manual provides good information but lots of folks don't have one. With that being said, I decided it was time to add a how to write-up to the web site to show just how easy it is. Hopefully you'll find this helpful.
First, you MUST verify that the magazine is not in the firearm and then check to ensure a cartridge is not in the chamber. It is important that you visually verify that the chamber is empty. Don't assume that pulling the bolt to the rear will guarantee an ejected cartridge should one be present. Make certain the pistol is EMPTY!
In order to remove the barrel from the frame, the pistol must be un-cocked. Again, you must verify that the pistol is empty/unloaded and then point it in a safe direction so you can safely pull the trigger to drop the hammer. With the hammer un-cocked, the tension is removed from the mainspring and allows the firearm to be disassembled.
The latch on the mainspring housing must be lifted and an easy tool that most everyone has is a paper clip. Slip the end of the paperclip over the end of the latch and pull it away from the frame. You can try using a thumbnail or a screwdriver but I recommend neither due to pain or the possibility of scratching the blueing.
With the latch toggled all the way out from the frame, lift the mainspring latch up out of the grip frame as far as you can. This puts the latch at about a 90 degree angle to the grip.
Next, pull straight down on the mainspring housing until the pin clears its hole in the top of the receiver. Some pistols may be tighter than others. A light tap with a plastic or wooden mallet on the end of the mainspring housing pin (which protrudes through the top of the receiver) while pulling downward on the mainspring housing can help things along.
Pull straight down on the mainspring housing until it clears
both the upper receiver and the frame. Mine came out nicely and didn't
require any assistance from a plastic hammer.