The Ruger LC9

2011 was the fourth year in a row Sturm-Ruger walked off with either the rifle or handgun of the year award. What will they do for an encore?

by Chick Blood

I’m beginning to lose count as I have already covered the LCR and LCP in previous issues. This particular CCW special is the latest winner. The “LC” stands for light carry, an updated, re-engineered version of the much larger and heavier Ruger P-Series. As the factory press release lingo says, the LC9 is a compact, lightweight, DAO, magazine-fed, recoil operated personal defense autoloader chambered in 9mm.

Shunning link-locking systems, the LC9 utilizes a camming design. Before firing, the barrel and slide are securely locked together. Upon firing, they remain together while traveling a short distance to the rear. After this initial movement, the barrel is cammed downward, clearing the way for full recoil of the slide to achieve extraction and ejection. The barrel stays out of the way, permitting the slide to begin a return to its forward position. During this trip, the recoil spring cams the barrel upward to resume lock-up with the slide.
Although 9mm +P ammunition can be fired in the LC9, a steady diet of the hot stuff could pound the pistol into a shorter service life. As for 9mm+P+, never use it. It’s not due to the LCP being somewhat a weak sister. Far from it. The unvarnished truth is there are no SAAMI or CIP pressure limits established for +P+ ammunition. Any use of it can result in serious injuries. You have been alerted. Please pass the warning along to any and all LC9 owners, especially those who might tend strongly toward loading their own.


Read more in our February 2012 issue. Back issues are available.

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