The 9MM Ruger LCR

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The kit comes with a neat, zippered case, a few clips and the manual.

Some of my gun-friends of the “big-bore” persuasion will occasionally snicker at my choice of a primary carry-piece: a Kel-Tec P-32, loaded with CorBon DPX rounds. If I hear an escapee is in the area, looking for guns to steal, I might go up to my next favorite, 9mm. But, some of the marvelous little autos in that chambering are often hard to control.

Ruger has just solved the problem, offering the compact LCR in 9mm. It’s an enclosed-hammer DA-only, using 5-round “full-moon” clips. For those who joined us lately, I’ll note this idea began a long time ago, with the “half-moon” clips of 1917, adapting Smith & Wesson and Colt revolvers to use the rimless .45 Auto for the Army.

Except for the clips, the 9mm version is essentially the same as the other LCR revolvers, in .357 Magnum, .38 Special and .22 LR. It has the internal transfer-bar, so no firing-pin contact until the trigger is fully to the rear. Carrying it fully loaded is perfectly safe.

The materials are the usual Ruger high-quality: Stainless-steel, high-tech polymer and aluminum-alloy. This combination reduces the empty weight to just a little over 17 ounces for a comfortable carry. The one-piece soft-rubber grip tames the felt-recoil of even Plus-P loads.

The grip has deep recesses at the front for two fingers. Extending it for a third would have affected the concealability factor some. The same could be said for the 5-round cylinder. Overall, everything is nicely rounded, with nothing to impede a smooth draw. Speaking of smooth, the 8-pound trigger has no vertical serrations, which helps the trigger finger sort of slide over the face of the trigger during a DA pull.

The polymer frame flexes just a tiny bit helping to soften any recoil, a minor issue with the 9mm version.

The “star” clips keep the rounds tidy and act like speed loaders.

Fun And Practical

In a close-range defensive handgun, the sights are not a hugely important item. Even so, these are very good. The ramp front has a white bar for easy eye pick-up in low light, and the rear is simply a square notch in the top of the frame. Again, nothing to snag on a holster or a pocket.

Shooting the 9mm LCR at the Big Tree range was a pleasant experience. The mild felt-recoil, even with snappy loads from CorBon and Black Hills, made this full-power 9mm easy and fun to shoot. And, it kept all five shots well-centered in the 8″ black of the Champion VisiShot target even during fast shooting at seven yards. I didn’t test it at 25 as that’d be silly in a gun like this!

Another note on the 5-round cartridge clips — they are, in use, essentially speed-loaders. They keep the fired cases together for easy gathering, which is a nice convenience, indeed. In any odd situation without them, you can still load and shoot, but you’ll have to pull the cases out one at a time.

With the 9mm LCR, you get a black nylon zipper case, three cartridge clips (more are available), and a good owner’s manual. Yes, it’s full of legal warnings, and edicts from certain un-American states, but read it anyway. Suggested retail price for the 9mm LCR is $619. For Ruger quality, innovation and reliability — quite reasonable.

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