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Ruger Compact Personal Defense Handgun Options: .380 ACP LCR & .38 Special LCP

By Todd Burgreen, Photos by Ethan Burgreen

The proliferation of concealed carry has led to a spike in compact handgun introductions over the last several years. Yes, many articles rightfully tout the abilities of full size handguns typified by GLOCKs, 1911s, and other types. Interestingly, the so called facts of life often intercede making carry of full size handguns impractical in certain settings either by clothing restrictions or mindset of practicing concealed carry. Do not think that your full size handgun of choice will always be convenient to discretely carry no matter how much you can alter your daily clothing or styles. The plethora of .38 Special snub-nosed revolvers and .380ACP semi-automatics being sold are proof positive that for many “convenience of carry” outweighs “willingness to carry” full sized handguns.

Handguns are accepted as a compromise in terms of lethality traded for portability compared to rifles or shotguns. A manufacturer that is developing into a noteworthy force in the US for all firearm categories, albeit sporting, competition, or personal defense, is Sturm, Ruger & Co. Currently, Ruger offers 400 model variations across 70 different products encapsulated within 25 distinct product lines. The Ruger LCP (Lightweight Compact Pistol) and LCR (Lightweight Compact Revolver) were both introduced several years ago in response to market impulses involving the increase in popularity of concealed carry type weapons. Ruger’s introduction of the LCP in 2008 and LCR in 2009 sought to combine proven personal defense cartridges to the smallest, lightest, practical packages.

The LCP is a semi-automatic chambered in .380ACP. Capacity is 6+1 fitting into a 9.65 ounce 5-inch long by 3.6-inch high by 0.82-inch wide package. An optional seven round magazine that extends below the magwell is available. The fixed sights are purposely minimal to reduce snagging for a handgun destined mainly for pocket or other types of concealed carry. The pistol has a glass filled nylon frame and a steel slide. The trigger is double action only (DOA) without re-strike capability. The Ruger LCP operates via Browning’s swinging link design as found in the...

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