Monday, May 17, 2010

Guns I Wish I Had: Ruger LCR .38 Special

Here is one of the newest additions to the long list of firearms I wish I owned. The Ruger LCR ( Lightweight Compact Revolver). It is a Double Action Only, 5 shot revolver, chambered in .38 Special. A quick glance my lead one to think that the LCR is similar to hundreds of thousands of .38 snubnose revolvers. You would be incorrect. Ruger has completely reinvented the snubnose. It starts with materials. Most revolvers have steel, frames, cylinders, and barrel sleeves. A few years ago, titanium and scandium alloys began to appear in lightweight revolvers. However, they have not taken over the market due to the fact that they wear at a much higher rate than a steel gun. The LCR uses stainless steel in the most stressed and important areas, the barrel, the cylinder, the trigger, and most of the internal pins and springs and such. The frame, which is smaller than on conventional small revolvers, is made from aluminum to reduce weight. Lastly, the fire control housing is made from polymer and the weapon is given a recoil reducing Hogue grip. It is also available with a Crimson Trace laser grip sight, which are pretty neat, even if they are $250 or so.

The upper piece is the aluminum frame and the lower is the polymer fire control housing
They aren't really these colors. Thank god.

The designers at Ruger also addressed the most glaring problem of the snubnose revolver. Not the short range or small ammunition capacity, but the accuracy destroying, terrible, long, heavy, trigger. They have included changes to the geometry of how the trigger, hammer, and sear interact and a friction reducing cam to make the absolute best trigger pull you have ever felt on a carry revolver. Because that is what the LCR was made for. Concealed carry. The rise of the number of Americans who are inclined to and legally able to carry a firearm in self defense has grown appreciably over the last 15 years and the manufacturers are beginning to respond, many with new or updated .38 Special and .380 ACP guns designed especially for carry.

Note the extreme fluting to the stainless steel cylinder. This makes it very light , but still quite strong.

So if you are still not convinced? How about this, they are only about $375-400. That is less than most quality guns that might replace it, and much less than the classic snub it so totally outclasses, the Smith and Wesson J-frame. I haven't had a chance to rent one at the range yet, but I got to hold and examine it and it really is something. A lot of people talk about their .45s and high capacity .40s and whatnot, but a little, reliable, powerful gun like the LCR is what a perfect carry gun is. It is concealable, you can ride in the car without gouging a hole in your kidney, and loaded with quality (read: expensive) defensive ammo, it could save your life or the life of someone you care for.


  1. This is the gun Walter gets in breaking bad, once I saw it i thought "that is the coolest gun ever!" It really does look like it is perfect for carrying, especially with the concealed hammer.

  2. Breaking Bad.......AWESOME. Ruger LCR.......AWESOME.