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Old 06-28-2012, 09:24 AM
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Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr? Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr? Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr? Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr? Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr?  
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Default Anyone own Ruger sp101 .22lr?

I know this a S&W forum but I wanted to see if anyone has the Ruger sp101 and how it compares to the S&W model 63.

I have wanted a model 63 with a 4 or 5" barrel for over a year but cant find one anywhere. My local dealer thinks they only come in 3" now.

Knowing I am smith guy he asked me to just "take a look" at a Ruger sp 101 in .22lr with a 4" barrel. I must say I loved it, it felt great! and for $200 less than a 63. This would be my only non S&W revolver and I kind of feel like I am cheating on them by even considering the purchase.

Any input is appreciated as I am about 2 hours away from laying down the money.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:36 AM
WNC Seabee WNC Seabee is offline
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I had an SP101 .22 until about a month ago. When I bought it, I liked it so much that I (regretfully) sold off my 4" Model 34-1. The M34-1 just felt too small for me.

The SP is a great revolver, well made, accurate and feels good in the hand. You will HATE the trigger until you swap out the hammer spring for a lighter weight one from Wolff. I think I ended up with a 10# or 12# hammer spring and never had a misfire with several different ammo types. With the spring swapped and a few hundred dry fires, the trigger smoothed right out.

For me, the grips are too small. If you have larger hands, try the grips made by Trausch. They look a bit funky but fit the hand really well and feel a bit like a target stock.

I did end up selling the SP, but that was to fund the 6" no dash 617 I just picked up. I would not hesitate to own another.

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Old 06-28-2012, 09:44 AM
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Thanks that is really good to know. I was planning on swapping the spring because of the reviews I have read. I have never had to put new springs in before so this will be a new adventure.

I do have bigger hands and the Ruger grips are ugly. So grips are fist on my list
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivers2k View Post
Thanks that is really good to know. I was planning on swapping the spring because of the reviews I have read. I have never had to put new springs in before so this will be a new adventure.

I do have bigger hands and the Ruger grips are ugly. So grips are fist on my list
The spring swap is super easy, far easier than it would be on an S&W. No more than a 5 minute job, even for a newbie.
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Old 06-28-2012, 10:26 AM
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When my youngest 'borrowed' my K22 several years ago, I began the hunt for another .22 for the grandkids to shoot when they come for a visit. When the SP101, .22 came out, I picked up one to add to the battery. I like it and so do the grandkids.
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Old 06-28-2012, 10:39 AM
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I have the original SP101, in 4". It has the full-underlug, and looks identical to its big brother, save but for the smaller caliber.

It is a very cool gun, and is so heavy that it literally has no recoil.
The stock grip was horrible, so I replaced it with a Hogue combat rubber grip. While the gun is fun to shoot, it does have some notable drawbacks. Mine has always shot a little low (even from a rest) and with the staked front sight, it isn't all the easy to just swap it out for one a hair lower, and one doesn't exist, anyway. That's not a deal killer, because once you learn to adjust your aim by a hair, it's fine. Just a little weird.

The bigger issue, and one for which I have never resolved, is after maybe a hundred rounds or so, the cylinder walls will build up with enough residue that it becomes a serious PITA to extract spent cases. Not sure the culprit. I don't know if that is still a problem on the resurrected model? Hopefully, not.

Despite the odd issues with the Ruger, I'll never sell it. It's still fun, and the fact that they don't make that exact model (the new one is really a security six) any longer makes it neat.

I don't own one myself, but I grew up learning to shoot my Dad's Smith 63. I never recall any issues, whatsoever, with that one. I wish Smith would make their current one in a short, or snub barrel. Just for fun. That might bring me to buy a lock gun.
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Old 06-28-2012, 11:01 AM
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Thanks all for your reviews it makes me feel better about my purchase.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oliveview View Post
I don't own one myself, but I grew up learning to shoot my Dad's Smith 63. I never recall any issues, whatsoever, with that one. I wish Smith would make their current one in a short, or snub barrel. Just for fun. That might bring me to buy a lock gun.
You are in luck Smith does make it in a snub nose that is all I can seem to find now the new one is 2". I cant seem to find the 4" or 5" barrels.

I prefer a longer barrel because its for pinking with friends and by the end of the day it turns it to who make the hardest shot. I really want the extra sight picture the longer barrel offers.

Last edited by Rivers2k; 06-28-2012 at 11:06 AM.
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:56 PM
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Just purchased one during lunch it has never been out of the box until me .

It takes a little less than a week to do the paper work (Good ol NY) I can't wait!

I now have my .22lr trifecta Rifle,Pistol,Revolver.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:50 PM
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Mine is an early one of the new 4.20-inchers from last year.
There was an initial problem with the way Ruger was cutting the forcing cones, which caused leading in the cone & it built up severely.
Since corrected in production.

Mine has 880 rounds of mixed stuff through it without cleaning, after I had the cone re-cut locally. Couldn't do that with the first sample I had.
Very stiff DA pull as you've noticed, but I didn't buy it to be shooting DA and I won't bother to risk ignition reliability by fiddling with spring replacements.
Sometimes that works in the SP, sometimes it doesn't.

I'm quite happy with it & the sights are a great improvement over the older windage-only versions.
Denis
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivers2k View Post
I know this a S&W forum but I wanted to see if anyone has the Ruger sp101 and how it compares to the S&W model 63.

I have wanted a model 63 with a 4 or 5" barrel for over a year but cant find one anywhere. My local dealer thinks they only come in 3" now.

Knowing I am smith guy he asked me to just "take a look" at a Ruger sp 101 in .22lr with a 4" barrel. I must say I loved it, it felt great! and for $200 less than a 63. This would be my only non S&W revolver and I kind of feel like I am cheating on them by even considering the purchase.

Any input is appreciated as I am about 2 hours away from laying down the money.

I have mostly S&W's myself and bought an 8 shot SP101. It is very well built and accurate but I would recommend shooting one first to see if it fits you. The frame behind the trigger is wider than all my S&W's. For me anyway, the wide frame behind the trigger causes my trigger finger to hit the frame before I can get the gun to fire. The smaller S&W 63 does not do this and feels much better than the SP101 when shooting.


By ds10speed at 2012-04-29

Last edited by DS-10-SPEED; 06-28-2012 at 03:33 PM. Reason: added info
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:22 PM
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I immediately put Hogue wood on mine.
Fits my hand great.
The 4-inch .357 Version will be going that route too.
Denis
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:41 PM
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Hey Marine. I have owned both and I see no comparison. The sights on the SP are terrible, adjustable for windage only if I remember right. The grip is also no good and will require a set of aftermarkets. Double action is 15 lbs. and way too heavy. I had the old type with a 4" bbl. I now have a non pinned M63 from 1982. Lighter, better from the box trigger pull, fully adjustable sights, S&W combat grips fit my hand much better, and the M63 is more accurate as far as I am concerned. I was going to buy one, and bought a 4" M617-0 instead. Semper Fi. Big Larry USMCR (60-68)
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oliveview View Post

...The bigger issue, and one for which I have never resolved, is after maybe a hundred rounds or so, the cylinder walls will build up with enough residue that it becomes a serious PITA to extract spent cases. Not sure the culprit. I don't know if that is still a problem on the resurrected model? Hopefully, not....
There you go, now you're gonna get me started again. I'll just take a deep breath, go back to what I was doing, and not go ballistic about the extraction problem with the SPs, Taurus 94s, etc...

Well, at least I'm not the only one with that problem.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:09 PM
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Larry,
You're behind the times.
Fully adjustable rear, fiberoptic front.
Denis
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:22 PM
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I have the last production 63, a 5"-er, as well as a current 63, the 3"-er. Also in the picture below is my 4" 651 (.22 WMR) which looks for all of the world like a 4" 63, which itself hasn't been offered in some time. The newer 63's are 8-shooters, while the original 63's are six-shooters. As they all had RB J-frame grips, I bought them their own 'Model 60 Pro' style grips - great feel in my medium+ sized hands. The 3" 63 came with a fo HiViz front sight - I added one to the 5"-er. Fast sighting 'aid' for 'mature' eyes.



An old friend paid a premium to own the first of the new SP-101 4" x8 .22's. My early production 3" 63 was ~$50 more - and from our A-Bing the pair, a great bargain! Mine had OEM springs - and was far smoother & lighter than his almost new SP. It does have a fully adjustable rear sight, not the weather-only adjustable rear sight of the old 4" SP in .22 (... or .32 H&RM, like mine! That was the absolute worst firearm I've ever owned for it's poor QC.). The current production 4" SP-101 in .22, an 8-shooter, is a decent firearm - with an attrocious trigger - probably remediable. Still, once burned on a horrid SP-101 in .32 H&RM, I am still trepidatious about owning a new one in .22. I looked at one locally for $539 new today just after lunch - barely a C-note less than the last local 3" 63 I saw - that's a no-brainer! My 3" 63 shot better groups, too. Just my opinion, but I'd get the 3" 63 - maybe some new grips(?).

Stainz, in S&W-only land!

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Old 06-28-2012, 06:30 PM
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Dpris, Those sights are the ugliest ever to be put on any firearm. I know the new SP's have them, and that's why I don't have one. I had the old model and didn't like it either. I already have the usual 22's. K22's K22 Magnums, M617's, and a really nice M63. I also have, put away, some very scarce Ruger Single Sixes. Nope, I will take my M63 every time, especially when riding my Quad or off road bike. Big Larry
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:53 PM
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Larry,
I bought the new .22 four-incher SP for the 8 rounds, quick loading & ejection, the barrel length, and those sights.

I'm not a huge fan of fiberoptics, but I've gotten to where I just ignore the green dot. The sight picture presented is big enough & squared enough that I can use it as a normal front post & disregard the light pipe.
The profile doesn't bother me from the side, either.

I worked with the 5-inch 63 a while back, liked it, didn't want a lock. (Just me. )
Worked with the 317, same.
Both nice guns otherwise.

I have a minty S&W Model 34, like it a lot, too nice to carry, but it does get fired.
Have 3 Ruger Single-Sixes, including a $1200 Clements beauty.

I don't much care for the DA pull on the new .22 SP, but as I said- I won't be shooting it DA much at all.
Otherwise, very durable, very beefy, no lock, don't need to worry about the finish, more accurate than the 34, quicker to load & unload than the Singles.

I had El Paso Saddlery build me a Tanker holster for toting the Ruger in the ATV above the regular beltgun, also fits the new .357 SP four-incher.
Works great for my needs, I know other opinions vary.
Denis
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:38 AM
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A few years back I started a Ruger collection. Didn't work for me so I sold most of them off. Lost a few $$$ in the process. I have four highly collectables left. A rare original "Star" KS-4, an original "Star" KS-9 still in the original box,a fairly rare 9 1/2" blued "Star", and a N.I.B.KNR-5 convertible from 1975. I will be keeping these. The 4" KS-4 shoots right up there with my 4" M617-0. Just harder to reload. Big Larry
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Old 06-29-2012, 01:05 PM
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Thank you all for the responses. I think there is some confusion between the old and new SP 101. I bought the new one with the adjustable sights.


I will stay clear of the old model read a lot of bad reviews but this newer model seems to have nothing but praise behind it. Thanks again for all your help. If I ever a see a new model 63 come up I may just have to buy that one too but I think I will be content with this.

Something that dawned on me last night. No lock to contend with.
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Old 06-29-2012, 01:32 PM
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Another plus for the Ruger.
Denis
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:10 PM
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Did you pull your grips yet? I know they were putting there lock under the grips. I will pick one up just as soon as I find one used. I have only bought a few new guns and dont see a Ruger 22 being shot out. It will be up against some stiff competition because I already have a model 18, 34, pre 34, single six, bear cat and a few auto loaders.

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Old 06-29-2012, 04:21 PM
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There are NO locks in the Ruger GP or SP, of any age or in any version.
Denis
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:52 PM
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Thanks Denis, good to know.
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Old 06-29-2012, 08:26 PM
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I love mine, the fiber optic sights are great for my "mature" eyes, and it's built like a tank. It needs a spring kit for sure, then it'll be good to go.
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Old 06-30-2012, 07:15 AM
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It never ceases to amaze me about the IL paranoia. Sure it is unsightly - but it is 'safe' - how else would you explain the fact that, after ten years of producing IL-equipped revolvers, S&W has yet to spend the first dime defending it's inclusion in court? Where are the lawsuits?? I like modern S&Ws - especially, my 3" 63. It is a keeper - as is the 642-2 I pocket carry 24/7. I own fifteen IL-equipped S&Ws - from 63/617 in .22LR to 629s in .44 Magnum. My first was bought 9/02 - I am an IL 'veteran' - not by choice - I wouldn't specify one on a revolver, if I had a choice. But wholesale refusal to buy new because of the IL is not in my nature - S&W has produced some neat stuff over the last ten years - like the 3" 63. Seriously, the 3" 63 is a great revolver... hold your nose... overlook the IL!

I can't even attest to the IL being functional, save for my first IL-equipped - a 4" 625-8 bought new 9/02. It has the only IL I ever 'tested'... I assume the fifteen IL-equipped I now own have their keys still in their boxes...

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Old 06-30-2012, 11:30 AM
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It never ceases to amaze me about the IL paranoia. Sure it is unsightly - but it is 'safe' - how else would you explain the fact that, after ten years of producing IL-equipped revolvers, S&W has yet to spend the first dime defending it's inclusion in court? Where are the lawsuits?? I like modern S&Ws - especially, my 3" 63. It is a keeper - as is the 642-2 I pocket carry 24/7. I own fifteen IL-equipped S&Ws - from 63/617 in .22LR to 629s in .44 Magnum. My first was bought 9/02 - I am an IL 'veteran' - not by choice - I wouldn't specify one on a revolver, if I had a choice. But wholesale refusal to buy new because of the IL is not in my nature - S&W has produced some neat stuff over the last ten years - like the 3" 63. Seriously, the 3" 63 is a great revolver... hold your nose... overlook the IL!

I can't even attest to the IL being functional, save for my first IL-equipped - a 4" 625-8 bought new 9/02. It has the only IL I ever 'tested'... I assume the fifteen IL-equipped I now own have their keys still in their boxes...

Stainz
I agree with you 100 percent.

On all my competition guns the locks are in and haven't had a problem.

On my carry guns I've simply removed the "flag" part of the lock to be certain.
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Old 06-30-2012, 12:44 PM
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It's an individual choice, and if the lock doesn't bother you, that's fine for you.

Two people in the firearms journalism field I know have encountered lockups, one local state agency here has too.
Statistically, the odds are on your side, but it DOES happen and my own choice is not to own a Smith with a lock.

The little Smiths are nice otherwise, but I'll stick to my older 34 and my newer SP.

Had not intended to turn this into another "lock" thread, it was just one factor in a selection process & one aspect of owner satisfaction.
Denis
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Old 06-30-2012, 03:05 PM
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Ruger makes good revolvers and rifles and it's a choice thing whether you are a S&W or Ruger guy or as some are you have both based on model and caliber.
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Old 06-30-2012, 03:26 PM
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Hey Macinaw,

If your not concerned of a lock failure and agree with Stainz 100% (he said he does not mod his guns) then why do you cut the flag on yours?

"On my carry guns I've simply removed the "flag" part of the lock to be certain."

And before the lock police arrive, I will not respond in this thread anymore about a lock. Even a padlock will not get brought up
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Old 06-30-2012, 03:55 PM
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Badger makes some fine aftermarket grips for the SP 101. Here is my 3" .357 model.

With Badger Grips and Country Boy Holster


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Old 07-01-2012, 08:36 AM
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To put things straight - I never said I don't 'mod' my revolvers. I have a bucket full of OEM springs to attest to that! I haven't even tried an IL on my revolvers since 10/02, however. If you quote me, at least be accurate.

Hey, Rolan, good to hear from you again - even if, ahem, that's another Ruger here in the S&W revolver forum. Really nice grips - and leather, however! I remember the 'good old days'... when you had - and liked - a 625MG in .45 Colt... (I still have my pair!).

I'll take my silver/white locks and leave now... time for breakfast!

Stainz
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  #32  
Old 05-15-2017, 10:07 PM
falrifles falrifles is offline
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I have a full lug older model SP101 .22 that I bought used around 1998. I was hunting for a S&W model 63. Mine is very accurate and the trigger is smooth and firm but controllable. I stopped looking for a 63. They had a second Sp101 .22, that was new in the box besides the used one I purchased. I went back two weeks later to buy the new one as well but it was gone. I love the rear sight that is recessed in to the top strap. It looks unconventional but is the correct height to work with the front sight. It has a great sight picture and mine hits dead on. POA-POI is the tip of the front sight. Its my favorite .22 revolver.
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Old 05-16-2017, 01:05 PM
RichCapeCod RichCapeCod is offline
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Fairifles, a fixed sight handgun that shoots to POA-POI is a gem. Hang on to that revolver! My old S&W 10 does the same. Never gonna leave me.

Rich
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