Well, as all impulsive financial decisions are made, this one was made... Well, impulsively. But I am very excited!
The Ruger LC9! A nice, tiny, double-action only, 7+1, 9mm pistol!
I went to the range today with the intention of using up some free range time I had from an earlier purchase, and to maybe do a little window-shopping (or should I say "glass counter shopping"). Well, turns out there was a 2 hour long wait for the range, so I decided I would at least look at some guns. Now, I've been thinking a lot about smaller guns lately; how I'm probably going to need one when Spring starts to come around, how my LCP "just won't do" in terms of my logic, how I would at least like a 9mm gun that I can conceal easier than my FNX-9, and a whole host of other attempts at convincing myself it's time to buy a new gun.
So, without hesitation, I went up to the counter and had the guy pull out an M&P compact 9mm, a Glock 26, a Keltec PF9, and a Ruger LC9. I took a look at the M&P. It felt great in my hands, but it wasn't quite as small as I was looking for. The Glock 26 looked great, and I've always been a Glock fan, but the price was a little steep. The Keltec was by far the cheapeast, but it also felt the cheapest. Then I picked up the LC9.
It felt great in my hand, the trigger pull felt wonderful, and look at this! It was cheaper than the rest except for the Keltec. It was also the thinnest and most rounded of the Glock and S&W. I was able to dry-fire it quickly through that DA trigger pull without my front sight wobbling all over the place. Everything felt right about it (including the price), so I just went for it.
Took it to the range immediately after, and I wasn't able to get pictures there, but I shot nice, tight groups with it at 7 yards, and that was good enough for me. I shot about 100 rounds of Speer Gold Dot 124g +P through it, and about 200 rounds of Wally World Federal 115g. Limp-wristed, weak-hand limp-wristed it, held it sideways like a gangsta, barely held onto it at all -- I simply could not get a malfunction to occur. I went ahead and bought an extra magazine for it (it only came with one), and an IWB holster made by Tagua Gunleather (originally made for a PF9, but fit like a charm). So, I'm not gun-reviewing expert, but I do LOVE to ramble, so I'm going to close this off with a Pros vs. Cons list.
- Lightweight. Some may disagree comparing to other guns, but the important thing is for me it feels lightweight, yet just heavy enough that it feels sturdy.
- 9mm. 'Nuff said?
- Small! I can conceal the entire gun with one hand (though I do have big hands).
- 7+1 capacity. I realize you can't expect too much more out of a single-stack magazine, and that's partially what allows the gun to be so thin, but with 7 rounds I don't feel like it's a huge step up from a decent revolver. However, I am slow when it comes to loading a revolver, and maniacally fast when it comes to changing magazines.
- Front sight post. It's a little taller (at least it appears to be) than the rear sights, and it took a little getting used to.
- Safety. It's really just kind of an awkward safety. I didn't plan on using it anyway, except for maybe pocket carry (even then I don't plan on carrying that way). But it engages/disengages at the rear of the notch, which for me is unconventional. Also, because I have large hands, I really have to pull my thumb back pretty uncomfortably to reach it, and that compromises my grip on the weapon, so practicing with the safety using draw and fire is kind of out of the question.
- Not ambidextrous. This is simply a gun made for right handed shooters. I AM a right handed shooter, but I try to plan for every possible scenario, and if I ever had to shoot defensively with my left hand (if my right hand is out of commission, for example), not only would the safety be a problem, but even more-so would changing a magazine be worrisome.
- Take-down. Field stripping this thing is neither quick, nor simple, nor can it really be done with one hand. It's certainly not a deal-breaker for me, but it is worth noting. To take the gun down you have to insert a special tool (or a small, long object into the right side, line up the slide with this little bolt, move this little notch down, and push the bolt completely out. That's one thing I love about my FNX-9, even though it's a completely unfair comparison, the take-down is so simple that I can do it one handed if necessary and with incredible speed.
- Doesn't fire without magazine. Again, not a deal-breaker, but, like I said, I try to plan on everything in a defensive scenario. What if I drop a mag for some reason with a round in the chamber, and I need that round? Gun ain't gonna fire.
So, that's about it. I realize that's quite a bit of rambling, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to share. The list of cons is obviously longer than the list of Pros, but at least for my own, personal needs in a concealed carry weapon, the pros simply outweigh the cons. Like I said, I'm no expert by any means, so take everything I said here with a grain of salt.
P.S. The gun feels like it isn't there when carried IWB at 4 o'clock, and I can carry it with a t-shirt on or a button up shirt, etc. and not have to worry about printing! This is definitely going to be my summer carry gun. :)