This is a discussion on Ruger LCR 357 v S&W M&P 340 within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by wheelyfun101 Love my no/lock 340 M&P... I have never compared it to a Ruger LCR..but thanks for comparing for us! The 340 ...
I like my Ruger LCR. Its trigger is lighter and smoother. Much easier to keep shots in the center.
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I prefer alloy J Frames over plastic....
I like my LCR 357. I've shot both gold dot 135 gr 357's and 38+p's, and currently am choosing to carry the 38+p's, primarily because I shoot them better. A secondary benefit is that they are easier to load from a speed loader.
FWIW, the gold dot 135 gr 357's chronograph (for me) around 1025 fps from my LCR 357, versus the advertised 990 fps -- producing 314 foot pounds KE versus the advertised 294.
Why did I buy the LCR? Originally, mouse guns were my thing and I carried and used a Kel-Tec p380 extensively. Problem was after hundreds upon hundreds of rounds, three trips back to Kel-Tec, I finally gave up on that gun as it was just too unreliable (as are most mouse guns). I finally decided that a snubby revolver was the way to go. My first was a Smith 642 that I still own. Dead reliable, light weight a little bulky for pocket carry, but doable if the pants have larger pockets (like pleated Dockers for example).
Every thing was dandy with the 642, but I was always a little dismayed by the marginal terminal Ballistics from the 38 special cartridge (even in +p form).
I started to consider the M&P 340/340PD, but ruled that out because of the price, and some of the horror stories I'd read about recoil. Enter the .357 LCR.
My initial impressions of the LCR were very favorable. I went on to test multiple types of ammunition including most of Buffalo Bore's offerings, Double Tap, and some other more run of the mill stuff like Winchester white box as well as my own handloads.
Regarding .357 magnum ammo I found the recoil to be totally manageable and not at all "painful" provided I held tight and leaned into the gun. I have fired more than 1000 rounds of .357 magnum ammo throught the LCR and some Buffalo Bore 38 special +P (which is just as powerful as your run-of-the-mill .357 loads). Of the loads I tested I settled on Double Tap Bonded Defense 158 gr JHP which chroned almost 1200 fps out of that gun.
Everything was hunky dory and I really like the LCR. I even ran a full course of fire in an IDPA match with it using .357 magnum loads without getting any blisters (although a couple of days later about 100 rounds into a practice session I did blister up I think due to the cumulative effect of all that pounding).
More than a 1000 rounds without a hiccup. An accurate (for what it is) and controllable .357 magnum pocket gun. Who could ask for more?
Now for the bad news.
After a practice session while cleaning the gun I was turning the cylinder and noticed that it had become really stiff to turn. I thought "well I'll try and take it apart and see if it needs cleaning in there and lube it up." Okay, how exactly do you take the cylinder assembly apart? Piece of cake on a Smith. That's when I discovered that the LCR is not really designed to be owner serviced. I eventually sent it back to Ruger (on their dime) so they could look at it. I got a call a few days later saying they were replacing the gun due to "Headspace Issues". WOW only a little over 1000 rounds and the gun needs to be replaced already?
Kudos to Ruger for replacing the gun but ***? Now I've kind of lost faith in the thing.
Back to the M&P 340
I am now thinking real hard about selling the LCR and replacing it with an M&P 340. I know about the horror stories of recoil but how much worse can it be?
I ran the most powerful stuff I could find throught the LCR and had no real issues and fed it a steady diet of magnum ammo sometimes going more than 100 rounds per session. I'm thinking the less than 4oz road-hugging weight difference between the LCR and the M&P 340 just aint' gonna' be that noticeable.
Ulike the LCR, the Smith is much more freindly to user repair and maintenance. The cylinder assembly practically falls apart in your hand once you remove the one retaining screw and pull the crane out. Very easy to maintain. Remove two more screws and the side plate pops off revealing full access to all the innards.
A little stone work in there and a Smith action runs smooth as glass. The Smith is a one piece all metal framenot a pinned together morph of plastic and steel. Build quality? No comparison. Yes the price is high, but in my opinion well worth it. The LCR was fun while it lasted, but I shoot my guns...a lot.
I need something I can work on and something that will stand the test of time.
I have always wanted a LCR in any form. A few years ago I was on the verge of getting one but a great deal came up on a Smith 637 that I couldn't pass on.
I've installed a XS front sight on my KLCR, and want to experiment with some carry loads that are less than full power.
The Double Tap, Remington and Winchester .357 Magnum ammo,ect- is perfect for someone who can handle the recoil better than
Makes me wince at selling my Speed Six, but I'd also have my Glock 33 and house payments as well.
I'll get another larger framed .357 down the road.
My LCR .357 still doesn't have a light trigger pull like my old 38+P models, but I really don't
want to mess with springs and any possible light primer strikes.
Sorry to drag this one back up but just want to thank everyone for their input. Thinking of getting another snubbie and I have 3 Smiths already. I really like the hamerless SP101 but it's so heavy. I'm used to my 340PD and 642. Both of which have a great trigger do to some spring changes and a little honing of the internals. Have ported the barrel on the 340PD and heavy .357 loads work just fine. Not painful at all but I do more practice with .38 +P. Love the XS sights and I only wish I could put them on the 642. I understand this is a plus for the Ruger LCR in that you can replace the original sight.
Just an update on my situation and how things paned out since my original post. This may help you decide about the M&P 340. While I never had any problems with my LCR 357 two things that changed my mind about the gun, first it was heavier than the Smith by about 4 oz and the 4 oz makes a difference, second was the grip size and the composite frame, I just didn't like the bigger grips which for me made it a bit harder to conceal. Please don't flame my tail feathers, I know I could have changed grips but my purpose in buying this gun was concealment and that it was a bit softer to shoot than the Smith. I think comparing the two guns the Smith is of better quality, how much that matters is up to the individual, both my Smith and LCR were flawless and both were great guns but the LCR was just not for me. Perhaps a better comparison cost wise to the LCR would be a model 637 or 642. Anyway the Ruger is gone I still have the Smith. I think a great round for these snubbies in either 38 or 357 is the Speer Gold Dot 135gr Short barrel. Hope this helps.
I think my update is a bit late for md80captain, I never saw the date of his last post , sorry. Well hopefully my updated post will be of some use or help to other members.