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Old 08-07-2011, 08:39 PM
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Default SR40 vs SD40- a review

After owning both firearms I'd like to do a comparative review of both for those who may be researching buying one or the other. I've seen alot of comparison between the SD and Glock or the SR and Glock, but the Smith and Ruger would both be right at the same price point (new) unlike the Glocks. I've owned both for a few months and would like to share some results.


SR40 purchased for $389 before tax


First, the Ruger SR40 is a nice looking gun.
-Slim fit with good grip angle.
-2 interchangeable backstraps
-3dot adjustable sights
-15+1 capacity
-Ambidextrous safety
-SS slide (now available in the black nitrodox slides).
-Very tight slide to frame fit, tight mag seating.
-Trigger was pretty good-slight grittiness, but not bad with a good short reset.
-Primer strikes were good, but not really that nice "punch" per se that I like.

On the first outing I cleaned it, loaded up with some Federal 165 gr FMJ, took aim and bang, bang, click. Jam. So I cleared the round, made another shot, then a second jam on the following round. I tried some Winchester PDX1 180gr JHP to no avail, same results. I tried the other mag that came with the gun and still got the same results. I put it up, and would have it shipped back to Ruger on Monday morning. Despite the issues with this gun in particular I can say all the hype about the low recoil factor is true. The low bore axis definatley helps in this aspect. Kicks noticeably less than other .40 cal pistols I have shot. Accuracy was good enough for me though I'm no competition shooter. Surely it can shoot better than I, as long as I do my part. Magazine capacity is 15, however that 15th round is a PITA to insert as well as seat the magazine. I loaded it to 14 and let it be. As far as the Polymer goes, it seems rather "soft" to me. Not that many would care, but it was an observation. Seemed as if it wasn't a high density "rough" type that could take abuse like a Glock, M&P, XD, etc.. When I cleaned it, a tad bit of RemOil got on the frame and no matter what I did to clean it, it left a small stain that I couldn't get off.

Took Ruger a little over a week to get it back to me, they said there was some slight burring on the camfer of the feedramp that was re-polished and supposedly they replaced the extractor for free?? lol. Anyhow, I managed to get 50 rounds out of it flawlessly when it came back, but decided on selling it. I also took note of a scratch on the slide that had not been there when I sent it off carefully packaged, but didn't bother calling them back on it.


SD40 purchased for $399 before tax.

S&W SD40-
-A little wider than the SD but a great grip angle...feels like an extension of the hand and easily to acquire sights with target.
-M&P Trijicon front sight (that are awesome) with 2 dot adjustable in the back.
-14+1 capacity.
-Slide to frame has much looser tolerances than the SR. Magazines rattle, but after a while you get used to it. Traded mine out with some Sigma mags and no more rattle.
-Nice silky looking melonite finish on the slide. Rugged polymer frame with lil finger dimple above trigger if you want to use it??
-The trigger is a tad heavier than the SR and not silky smooth, but I feel safer with it and prefer it actually. Reset is good.
-Nice hard punch to the primer

At the range, to be honest I did a "no-no" and shot the gun without cleaning it thoroughly first...but- it performed flawlessly. Fast forward- I have now put over 1000 rounds through the SD with FMJ, JHP, cheap brands, expensive brands, reloads and not 1 single issue to complain about. I would trust this gun whenever forbid I need it most. I love it and it goes wherever I go. It does kick more than the SD, but about even with many other .40's on the market. Smith and Wesson has surely made a fine pistol for those in the "middle" price range. With those 1000+ rounds, my accuracy has greatly improved, and sure enough the trigger pull is a little smoother too.

This review was from my point of view with the guns that I purchased. YMMV.

Thanks

Last edited by scandmx5; 08-07-2011 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:54 AM
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Nice review, thanks for posting!

Congrats on your SD!
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:16 PM
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Nice review, thanks for posting!

Congrats on your SD!
Thanks. I'm sure most here already know how good the SD is, but a quick google search and I couldn't really find a comparison of the two. Maybe this will help any on the fence about it.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:46 PM
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Is the rifling the EDM "rounded" type?
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Old 08-08-2011, 10:21 PM
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Good review! I was wondering about how the two compared.
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Old 08-09-2011, 12:50 AM
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Is the rifling the EDM "rounded" type?
Wish I could help, but I have no clue! I'm not well versed on "rifling" lol
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Old 05-19-2013, 07:54 PM
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As of today I own my 3rd SD! I have since dumped 40 all together and gone to 9mm. Got lucky and found a BNIB SD9 1st gen on gunbroker from a dealer about an hour and a half away. Snagged it within 10 minutes of them posting it on gunbroker! No rattle FTW! I'm taking it out tomorrow and I'm sure I won't be let down. I do not plan to sell this one off, considering cerakoting the frame in FDE.
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Old 09-29-2013, 07:55 AM
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Honestly, I have no experience with the S&W, but, I took my recently purchased SR40 out yesterday, and my results were quite different.
WW "white box" was first up, and that hundred rounds went out without a single hiccup. There was a magazine loading device included with mine, and welcome aid that is!
After that first hundred rounds, which I used up over a bag, then two handed, and then single handed, with both hands, I think I've found the second Ruger semi auto that I can like! (the other is the SR1911 that I bought last year)
I must admit, that what prompted me to buy this particular 40 is that it was available! Since the last "election", handguns in that chambering of any flavor seem to be in short supply, so when this one showed up, I had to have it.
I DID reverse the backstrap to make it straight, for my smaller than average hands, something I've had to do with almost all of my semi autos. I'm not necessarily in love with the sights, though they'll do in a pinch for me. I'm actually a better shot at 7 yards and under without using sights at all, and for extended yardages, I prefer a "target" type sight arrangement.
My trigger was more than satisfactory from the "git-go", and seems to be a bit smoother than my XD40's were. Not a 'match' trigger by any stretch, but not "pulling a box of rocks down a gravel road for a hundred yards", either.
This handguns safety and mag release is perhaps the first setup that I've been able to successfully use with both hands of any manufacturer.
In all, for an "under $400" semi auto, it's a very good buy, at least in my eyes.
I must admit that I've always been a revolver guy, almost exclusively S&W's, to boot, and have, until recently, not paid too much attention to the Ruger handguns of any persuasion. Got to say, though, that since I retired, and there's only one check coming in, and gas pushing $4 a gallon, I don't have the budget to buy just anything that pleases me. After holding my nose and walking past a LOT of Rugers over the years, my experience with several of them recently has made me re-think things!
I look forward to checking out the S&W, and some of the others, when they become available around these parts. In the meantime, I'm quite satisfied with this one, and don't feel the need to push it off for something else!
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Old 09-29-2013, 09:11 AM
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Had both. Sold the Ruger. The fit and finish were far superior on the S&W. Especially on the trigger guard. looked like they finished it with a cheese grater. I just couldnt force myself to get over it after paying full price for a brand new gun just to have it flawed.

Bought the SD, installed the Apex kit, polished up a few things, and have never looked back.
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Old 09-29-2013, 10:07 AM
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I also have owned both, key is I still own the SD40, but not the SR. There are reasons for that.
The SR40 was such a nice looking gun. And, thats about all it had. The only other good thing about it was the accuracy....when ever it worked, which was rare. Four trips returned, great customer service, sold on it's last return as it was a new replacement. Only firearm I've ever hated is the SR40.

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Old 09-29-2013, 11:11 AM
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Having worked in a gun store and seeing the problems people had with the Ruger SR series guns, I would buy a S&W SD before I would take a free Ruger SR.
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Old 09-29-2013, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scandmx5 View Post
SR40 purchased for $389 before tax
First, thanks for the comparison review. I've owned both pistols in 9mm: SR9 and SD9VE, and I'm planning on getting a 40.

My only other comment is regarding the price. I see people post these low prices all the time, from other locations, and I never, ever see them around here. I've never seen a new Ruger SR for less than $459, if you can even find them. I guess everything is bigger in Texas, even the price tags!

On the other hand, I did buy my SD9VE on sale at Academy Sports for $299...and they are regularly priced at $319. That is a heck of a deal, even at regular price.
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Old 09-29-2013, 09:37 PM
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Thanks for the review. Mine - SD9 - still shoots flawlessly. I really do trust the gun. 2200 rounds and zero issues!

Sent from my GT-P3113 using Tapatalk 4
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ambidextrous, extractor, glock, polymer, primer, ruger, sd40, sigma, smith and wesson, trijicon, winchester

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