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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

High Standard Derringer

The nickel, type-3, High Standard .22 L.R. Derringer pictured above was assembled around 1973, which put it at about 22-years-old when I bought it used back in 1995.

There are guns currently manufactured under the High Standard (AKA Hi-Standard) name, but this blog entry is traveling back in time to touch on the old High Standard Derringer not made by this new company. For information on the old High Standard line of guns, we are grateful to have John Stimson’s High Standard Information Website. Go there to date your old guns, download manuals, or take part in forum discussions.

The original company produced these derringers from 1962 through 1984. There was a time when this derringer was de rigueur among the well heeled. Many felt this design was “the derringer done right.” Easy to conceal, they are thin guns but not petite; they have 3 ½’’ over-under barrels and a fair sized grip. Having no awkward hammer to thumb-cock before firing, its double action makes two shots available as fast as you can squeeze the trigger. According to
this site, for many years the Louisiana State Police purchased the .22 magnum version of this derringer as backup guns for the troopers.

Unlike on most pistols, the grip-panels serve no mechanical function; they can be removed to provide an even flatter carry. Some shooters find the shape of the grip-frame awkward. As an alternative, provided it is not long enough to extend past the end of the barrels, instead of using your index finger for the trigger try placing it alongside the barrels and using your middle finger for the trigger.

Click here for a 1967 Shooting Times magazine article by Skeeter Skelton where he discusses, in part, the virtues of the High Standard Derringer.

Click here for former Border Patrol Officer Glenn Bartley’s review of the American Derringer Standard.


James R. Rummel said...

Good post!

Anonymous said...

If a person feels that they want to carry a .22 derringer for self-defence , the HI-Standard is the way to go ! A much better derringer than the older Remington types and the Davis derringers as the HI-standard does not have a hammer to pull back for each shot , nor button safeties to push like the Davis derringers , just pull the trigger and shoot !

Anonymous said...

I know an individual here in Arizona who carries the High Standard .22 magnum Derringer as his personal defence weapon while riding his motorcyle, he likes the weapon as it is fast to get into operation and at point blank range it is deadly ! If a person likes derringers, the High Standard is the best ! Davis or Cobra too slow, buttons to push and a hammer to pull back !The High Standard is a great little backup weapon ! For a small weapon I prefer an auto like a Kel-Tec .32 or a Seecamp !

Anonymous said...

It is a shame that High Standard stopped making their derringer as it is the best .22 derringer ever made ! I believe American Derringer makes a similar derringer except it is in .38special !It is beyond me to understand why anyone would buy a derringer for self-defence especially when there are so many quality small pocket automatics avaliable today, a derringer has only two shots and derringers such as the Davis and Cobra are terribly slow to get into action, a button safety to push, a hammer to pull back and an ungodly poor trigger pull, and a terrible grip that is hard to hold !

Anonymous said...

I have had mine for many years. It's a ball to shoot, big bang and flash. If it dosn't kill him he will need to change pants!

Not my primary carry gun, but it works well with my wallet holster in my back pocket in hot weather.

Anonymous said...

I am considering manufacturing a derringer that is so close to the Original High Standard that a trained eye would have trouble telling the difference. What do you think? should I bring back this derringer?

GeoW said...

If you bring back the High Standard clone.... bring back a holster along with it!

Anonymous said...

I think that would be great

Anonymous said...

I need an exploded view of the guts of this gun!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Anonymous! I hope you can make an accurate and quality copy of the HS derringer in .22 LR and .22 Mag. When I was about 15, my Dad bought me a blue .22 Mag version and it was accurate to about 15 yds. I could keep both barrels in the torso of a silhouette target with relative ease. A few years down the road, it developed problems and I sent it off for repairs. When it came back, it never felt quite right and I eventually traded it for a nickel version, hoping for less corrosion with it. The nickel version was less accurate, and good out to about 10 yds or so. The nickel gun eventually developed rust from daily pocket carry. For this reason, PLEASE make it in SS, if you decide to reproduce this model!!!!! I sold it and regret it.

In the mid 80's, I purchased a .38 stainless derringer by BJT or BTJ of Hamden, CT. It was DA and .38. It had a safety on the side. It was accurate with the old HOT Glasers to about ten yds. Got rid of it and now regret it.

A few years ago, I saw where American Derringer had offered a knock-off of the HS derringer. I would not be inclined to buy one of them because AD charges a LOT for their guns and QC is not that good in my experience. The American Derringer offering was in .357 mag and was stainless. It was very similar to the BTJ or BJT in appearance but heavier. They wanted about $600 for it. I bought one and regretted it. Bullets would keyhole terribly and useful accuracy was only about 5 yds, if that.

PLEASE, if you make a copy of the HS, pay attention to rifling, bore diameter, and other details so it will work and shoot well. If you make it right, I will buy one!

Anonymous said...

If you want to bring back the High Standard Derringer .22 mag, here is a PDF with an exploded view so you can see how they were made... Suggest the mag over the LR..... http://stevespages.com/pdf/histandard_d101.pdf

Anonymous said...

I bought one in .22 mag. in the early 80's at a hardware store for about $140. It is blue and came with thick black plastic grips. I bought a box of ammo and still have half left. A machinist friend hand made a thin polished stainless set of grips. I still have a little leather holster, original box and both sets of grips. I was told to never dry fire it as the pin was fragile. When fired at 10-15 yards. the rounds tend to keyhole
through the target. A lot of blast and noise but I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of 2 rds. center mass. All i need is a Q-tip and some oil to clean it.

alonzo said...

I have a high standard 22mag derringer mod d85486 how much are they worth.

Ricardo Sandoval said...

I have a derringer 22 magnum d57999 someone could tell me how much its worth its on exellent condition??

Anonymous said...

I bought the amer arms 22 lr. Works as advertised. 5 rounds of white hot .22 hp rounds to go. Sure I would like a bit bigger grip, but then it wouldn't be as easy to conceal. 10 yds is accurate. Not expensive at all. "any gun is better than no gun"