Back in December, I attended a three-day rollout of new Ruger products at Gunsite a month before they were officially launched. The firearms included the Security-9 pistol, PC Carbine, and Precision Rimfire. This report features the first two guns.
A BIT OF HISTORY
In 1971 Ruger introduced the Security Six double-action revolver. The revolver was more affordable than, but just as reliable as, competing revolvers from Colt and Smith & Wesson.
My brother-in-law carried the Security Six until the department we both worked for—the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office in Arizona—adopted 1911s in 1978. This was long before most departments transitioned to semi-autos. Frank shot Expert with his Security Six right alongside Colt Pythons and Model 27 Smiths.
The Security Six was a workhorse and those still around continue to be. Everything indicates the Security-9 will carry on that proud tradition.
The Security-9 is roughly the same size as a Glock 19, falling in size between a sub-compact and full-size pistol—the most popular size with the vast majority of shooters.
The all American-made Security-9 is constructed around a rigid one-piece precision-machined aluminum chassis with full-length guide rails. The slide has a blue finish and is through-hardened alloy steel, as is the four-inch barrel. The textured frame is manufactured from high-performance glass-filled nylon with an integral accessory rail for a light or laser.
The Secure Action used in the Security-9 is the same as the LCP® II and has the smooth trigger pull of the LCP II, with a short, crisp feel and positive reset of a single-action.
Safety features include a bladed trigger safety, external manual safety, neutrally balanced sear with significant engagement and strong spring tension. A hammer catch helps prevent the hammer from contacting the firing pin unless the trigger is intentionally pulled.
Weighing just 23.7 ounces (empty), measuring 1.02 inches wide, and using a 15-round double-stack magazine, it is an ideal size and weight for everyday carry for self-defense.
The fixed dovetailed rear and front sights are drift adjustable. The rear sight has a white outline, while the front has a white dot. The sights can be changed out for other color options, including orange, yellow, and black, available separately from Ruger.
The Security-9 ships with two 15-round steel magazines and a cable locking device.
The most exciting thing about the Security-9 may be its price point. With a suggested retail of just $379.00, it will probably be offered in stores for $300 or even less!
SHOOTING THE SECURITY-9
Over three days at Gunsite, I put an estimated 1,500 rounds through the Security-9. Within the first 100 rounds, I had two failures to eject. I lubed the pistol with Slip-2000 and had no further problems.
The slide was easy to rack and I found the texturing almost perfect—aggressive enough to provide a substantial grip but not so rough that it created hot spots on my hand during a full day of shooting. Hitting MGM eight-inch steel plates at ten yards under speed was a simple feat.
While subjective, the trigger pull felt very good to me.
Ruger provided a test & evaluation pistol to further evaluate the Security-9 on my home range. After lubing the new pistol, I fired another 800 rounds. I tried every type of 9mm ammo I had on hand, with bullet weights ranging from 50 to 147 grains, and FMJ and hollow points.
Once again, I had one failure to eject within the first 100 rounds, but after that it smoothed out and had no further malfunctions. I know that some people scoff at the idea of a break-in period, but in my experience, it does occur.
I was able to fire accurate “hammers” out to about ten yards and quick dedicated pairs past 15 yards. I kept all rounds within an eight-inch circle to 25 yards as soon as the sights settled back on target.
I tried several weaponlights of different lengths and that lock up in different locations on the Security-9’s integral rail. These included lights from SureFire, Streamlight, Lucid, and Blackhawk. All fit securely and operated with no problems. I can’t say the same thing for all pistols I’ve tested over the years.
Another new Ruger firearm I spent a lot of time with at Gunsite was the PC (pistol caliber) carbine.
Similar to the popular 10/22 Takedown® rifle, the PC Carbine’s barrel and forend are quickly separated. Takedown consists of locking the bolt back, verifying that the rifle is unloaded, pushing forward on a recessed lever in the forend, then twisting the forend about a quarter turn to the left and pulling it apart from the receiver group. It takes less time to accomplish than it takes to read this.
Taken down, the package is less than two feet long. Assembled, overall length is 34.37 inches.
The stock is manufactured from glass-filled nylon with an integral accessory rail. A soft rubber buttpad caps the stock and comes with three spacers that allow the carbine to be adjusted for different-sized shooters, gear, and outerwear.
The carbine is fitted with a fluted cold-hammer-forged chrome-moly 16.1-inch barrel. The flutes help reduce weight and aid in cooling due to the increased surface area. The muzzle has the standard ½x28 thread pattern for attaching a suppressor or other muzzle device.
The bolt is machined from heat-treated chrome-moly steel for strength and durability. The carbine features a dead blow action with a custom tungsten dead blow weight. This weight shortens bolt travel and reduces felt recoil and muzzle rise.
Sights consist of a ghost ring rear aperture sight, adjustable for windage and elevation, and a non-glare, protected blade front sight.
While not ambidextrous, both the magazine release and charging handle are reversible to fit right- and left-handed shooters. The carbine comes from the factory with the charging handle on the right side and the mag release on the left.
Unique to the PC Carbine is its ability to use a variety of magazines. The carbine comes with a Security-9/SR9 series magazine well installed and also includes a mag well that will accommodate Glock magazines.
To change from one magazine well to the other, loosen the two bolts that attach the stock to the receiver and separate the two assemblies. Push in on the magazine release button and lift out the mag well. Push the magazine release in again and drop the other mag well into place. It’s that simple. A magazine well that fits the Ruger American Pistol magazine will be available separately at www.shopruger.com.
The PC Carbine ships with one SR9 17-round magazine.
Several people have asked me what function the PC Carbine will serve. Many law enforcement agencies across the country still either do not supply a sidearm or leave it to the individual officer to choose what he wants to carry. If that choice is a Ruger SR-9, Security-9, American Pistol, or a Glock, he can have a carbine that uses the same magazines as his service weapon.
Taken down, the PC Carbine is less than two feet long—a feature that will be welcomed anywhere space is a consideration. This includes backpacks, boats, aircraft, motor homes, and saddle bags on a motorcycle.
With the addition of the Pistol Calber Carbine class in practical competitions becoming very popular, use of the PC Carbine as a competition firearm is another distinct possibility.
In the Old West, where vast distances often had to be traveled for resupply, it made sense logistically for cowboys, lawmen, and outlaws to have more than one sidearm that used the same ammunition. This is also true for ranchers and farmers in rural areas, as well as preppers—one caliber that uses the same mags for pistol and carbine is practical.
Finally, 9mm ammo is plentiful and less expensive than rifle calibers and larger pistols, making it suitable for casual plinking.
SHOOTING THE PC CARBINE
I probably put more ammo through the PC Carbine at Gunsite than anyone else. I’ll explain.
In one competition, the last target was a double spinner. To stop the clock, the target had to make two full rotations. I went through six 17-round mags with no success.
As I walked off the line, I thought to myself, “I remember seeing the bullet impacts in the berm.” And then it hit me: I had gotten so involved in the target spinning that I was watching the target and not my front sight! I’m not shy about confessing when I screw up and, as Pat Rogers would have said, this was a teachable moment. I stayed in the bubble and did better on my second run.
Back on my home range, I fed the T&E carbine the same wide range of ammo that I’d put through the Security-9. First, I used Ruger Security-9 and SR-9 magazines, then switched to the Glock mag well and used OEM 15-round Glock mags as well as 15- and 17-round Glock PMAGs. I experienced no malfunctions with any magazine.
The magazine release on the left side worked well for me, and I manipulated it with my thumb. But I switched the charging handle from the right to the left side as it allowed me to charge the carbine while maintaining a firing grip with my right hand.
At 100 yards, I was able to keep shots in about a six-inch group using the ghost-ring sights. Adding a small red-dot sight like the Aimpoint T-1 would increase accuracy while keeping weight to a minimum.
I only encountered one small problem with the PC Carbine, and this may not be important to everyone. The front sling swivel sits very close to the integral rail on the forearm, thus severely limiting which weaponlights can be used.
Without removing the swivel, none of the X-series SureFire lights or the Streamlight TLR-2 would fit. Of other lights I had on hand, only the Lucid C2, Blackhawk Xiphos NT, and Streamlight TLR-4 could be attached to the rail. These lights were either shorter or had the locking bar for the rail farther to the rear of the light, thus allowing it to be placed farther forward.
Suggested retail price for the PC Carbine is $649.00, meaning the “street price” may be around $500.
I think Ruger has a couple of winners on their hands. One person at the Gunsite event dubbed the Security-9 “the Glock killer,” as it’s the same envelope in size at a lower price. With the popularity of the Glock, I wouldn’t go that far, but only time will tell.
On the other hand, with the indicated retail prices, a person could buy both the pistol and carbine that use the same ammo and mags for less than the cost of some carbines alone, and use what’s left over for ammo or training.
That’s what makes the Security-9 and PC Carbine such a dynamic duo.
STURM, RUGER & CO, INC.
|MANUFACTURER||Sturm, Ruger & Co, Ltd.|
|MODEL||Security-9 (Model #3810)|
|OVERALL LENGTH||7.24 inches|
|BARREL LENGTH||4 inches|
|SLIDE WIDTH||1.02 inches|
|SLIDE MATERIAL||Through-hardened steel|
|SIGHTS||Fixed, drift adjustable|
|SUGGESTED RETAIL PRICE||$379.00|
SPECIFICATIONS, PC CARBINE
|MANUFACTURER||Sturm, Ruger & Co, Ltd.|
|MODEL||Pistol Caliber Carbine|
|FRAME MATERIAL||Glass-filled nylon|
|SLIDE MATERIAL||Aluminum alloy|
|FRAME FINISH||Type III hard-coat anodized|
|LENGTH OF PULL||Adjustable, 12.62 to 14.12 inches|
|BARREL LENGTH||16.12 inches, fluted|
|OVERALL LENGTH||34.37 inches|
|FRONT SIGHT||Protected blade|
|REAR SIGHT||Adjustable ghost ring|
|MAGAZINE COMPATIBILITY||Ruger Security-9, Ruger SR series, Glock|