Common problems with Ruger’s Lightweight Compact Pistol and getting it up and running.
by RK Campbell
The Ruger LCP is a very popular handgun, being small, flat and concealable. The rub is quite a few folks load it, fire a magazine through it, and never practice again. The shooters that do practice with the LCP sometimes find it comes up short on performance. After a few brushes with the pistol, the cures are now standard and were simply common sense.
As an example, among the first problem areas that began showing up with the LCP were dents in the ejected case and nicks in the case rim. Positive extraction and ejection is all good but that wasn’t the problem. The problem was that the aluminum portion in the polymer frame needed to be properly trimmed and lowered as it was protruding just below the extractor and spent cases were contacting this area. This type of defect might also be responsible for poor feeding. A combination of filling and polishing away some 1/8th of the sub-frame cured this problem neatly.
When examining the Ruger under magnification it is obvious how rough some cast and aluminum parts can be. This is simply part of modern production. By carefully polishing these areas and removing burrs and rough areas, you will decrease friction and make for a smoother and more reliably operating handgun. When polishing a handgun it is good to strive for a smooth surface but when addressing the feed ramp it is best to remove any sharp edges or tool marks. The LCP will usually feed the Remington 102 grain Golden Saber load and the Hornady 90 grain XTP, while other loads with a wide mouth may be more problematic. It is best to begin with 600 grit sandpaper and carefully polish the feed ramp. Do not work the feed ramp too much but carefully place the sandpaper on the end of a wooden dowel and sand carefully, going back and checking for ridges or rough edges on the feed ramp. For a true ledge or ridge, no matter how very small, sometimes a jeweler’s file is the best starting point.
Read more in our April 2014 issue. Back issues are available.