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Old July 20, 2002, 01:18 AM   #1
innocuous ignoramus
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Problems with 9mm pistol

I have been depending on a Ruger P95DC for home defense, but it has jammed on me at the range on a number of occasions and I'm concerned about its reliability in an emergency. I do own a revolver, but it is a SRH .454 Casull, which is obviously inappropriate for self defense purposes. Automatics in general seem less reliable than revolvers (because autos have more potential for jamming and other malfunctions), but I like autos better because of their larger ammo capacities and ability to deliver follow-up shots more quickly. It would certainly be nice to combine the best of both worlds. Any suggestions from others who have dealt with this problem? I plan on buying just one more gun, something for home defense to replace the P95.
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Old July 20, 2002, 01:28 AM   #2
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If you're a little uncomfortable with autos, go with a good .357, or 12ga. pump, or even a 20ga.
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Old July 20, 2002, 01:29 AM   #3
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Just get a Sig. The Sig P239 can be bought at a reasonable price, and mine has gone its entire lifetime (at least 3,000 rounds) without any malfunctions. My P226 also has never malfunctioned. Part of this is luck of course, but overall I consider the Sig Sauers to be the most reliable out of the box production 9mm's made.

I'm actually surprised to hear that your Ruger is malfunctioning though, they usually make good guns. Is there a chance your malfunctions are ammo related? Underpowered ammo can make any semi-auto malfunction--even the better ones. Just something to consider.

Every maker produces lemons, I'm guessing you just got an unlucky P95. Ruger has a really good customer service department, maybe you should have them work on the gun (they usually make your gun right for free). I'd say give Ruger one chance to fix your gun, and if they can't do it right then order a replacement semi-auto.
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Old July 20, 2002, 01:35 AM   #4
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If the guns not reliable I'd look into getting something else. I think having a gun that functions reliably is the most important thing for defense. Depending on your funds and what your priorities are you've got to make a hard decision. I'd look into getting a used gun semi-auto or revolver but probably a revolver since they're cheaper.

Forget about the coolness factor, get a gun that works that you feel you can depend on. Despite the bad experience you've had with a Ruger auto I'd try to find a Ruger revolver (GP-100, SP-101, Serurity Six). Ruger revolvers are regarded highly by revolver shooters.

In autos 9mm Sig, Glock, and Browning HP's are always good choices.
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Old July 20, 2002, 01:59 AM   #5
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What types of ammo are you using? Is it jamming on hardball or just certain types of Hollow Points? More info please.
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Old July 20, 2002, 02:00 AM   #6
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I recommend a Winchester 1300 Defender for your home defense needs. (If you don't already have one, this is a great excuse to get one! )
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Old July 20, 2002, 04:08 AM   #7
Hal
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Quote:
I do own a revolver, but it is a SRH .454 Casull,
CCI Blazer 200 gr JHP .45LC will work fine in your SRH for a HD load while you sort out the auto situation.

You might take a close look at the CZ75b for a semi auto.
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Old July 20, 2002, 04:38 AM   #8
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You could trade the Ruger for a CZ.
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Old July 20, 2002, 06:38 AM   #9
Ala Dan
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Quote:
"Automatics in general seem less reliable than revolver's"

With due respect for the above quote, I have found nothing
but extreme reliability with Sig-Sauer handguns. 0
malfunctions with four different model's: P220, P226, P228, and a P229. I have depended on the Sig P220 .45 ACP
to protect my life and lives of loved one's sicnce 1988.


Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
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Old July 20, 2002, 06:45 AM   #10
HowardK
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What kind of ammo are you using? Are you using Ruger factory mags? Is the gun clean and lubed?

The Ruger was my first gun and it NEVER jammed in the 1000s of rounds I put through it. It was the most reliable gun I ever owned (and I've owned a lot). I'd change ammo and check out the mags. If that's not it, send it back to Ruger--they guarantee the gun for life.
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Old July 20, 2002, 10:15 AM   #11
innocuous ignoramus
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Ruger handguns

When I described the problem I had with the P95, I certainly didn't intend to criticize Ruger or any of their fine products. As I indicated, I also own a SRH .454 Casull and have been delighted with it. The P95 is a fine gun and very enjoyable to shoot. I have had a few jams, and my question (which I know is really a matter of opinion) is whether the possible reduction of malfunctions which a revolver offers makes it a safer pick than an auto for home defense. Any suggestions on a good revolver?

Thanks.
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Old July 20, 2002, 10:41 AM   #12
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I think that a firearm will be reliable or it won't, regardless of whether or not it is a revolver or a semi-auto. I can say that the semi auto has the edge on potential problems because there are more moving parts, thus more potential for something to go wrong.

My experiences have been that my autos have been more reliable than the revolvers that I have had. Sounds strange, but is a true story. Juyst like anything else, I judge a firearm on it's own merits.
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Old July 20, 2002, 10:43 AM   #13
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Five shot capacity: Ruger SP101, Smith model 60, Taurus M85UL or titanium.

Six shot capacity: Ruger GP, Smith 686, Rossi M462.

All .357s, all reliable, all accurate out to 25 yards, further with with the longer barrells, and all relatively inexpensively priced. Your choice of barrel length is available in most (smith model 60 and Rossi 462 are 2" barrell only, but are supprisingly accurate out to 25 yards - I shoot 7" steel plates very successfully with both of them).

Lots of luck with your upcoming new purchase.
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Old July 20, 2002, 11:27 AM   #14
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Get a Winchester 1300 Defender, they never jam.
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Old July 20, 2002, 12:45 PM   #15
CZ_
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Quote:
With due respect for the above quote, I have found nothing
but extreme reliability with Sig-Sauer handguns. 0
malfunctions with four different model's: P220, P226, P228, and a P229. I have depended on the Sig P220 .45 ACP
to protect my life and lives of loved one's sicnce 1988.
I agree. I've never had a Sig malfunction either.

However....if you happen to get an underpowered load that doesn't fully cycle the slide ANY good semi-auto can malfunction. In this way, revolvers are more reliable in that they can tolerate a wider range of loads.
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Old July 20, 2002, 02:03 PM   #16
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As to the question of whether a revolver is a "safer" or more reliable pick than an auto I personally believe the revolver has a slight edge not worth considering. I believe autos have tactical advantages that outweigh that small bump in reliability. I also think its easier clearing most jams with an auto than a jammed revolver during a gun fight. **And with models by Sig, Glock, and Beretta I don't believe revolvers have any advantage in the reliability department.**

In my personal experience I've had the SAME PERCENTAGE of malfunctions (gun or ammo induced) with various autos and revolvers.


*Go to the Revolver Forum there's a thread called "Which revolver would you choose..." where a lot of TFL members have weighed in with their favorite choice for carry/defense.
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Old July 20, 2002, 02:16 PM   #17
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greetings, have two p-95 and believe your problem is in the mag. and not the gun. respt submitted, dadsfreehold
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Old July 20, 2002, 03:34 PM   #18
chaim
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I'll second the info someone else has given you. You can use your .454 for home defense- load it with .45lc.

I think a revolver is a better home defense weapon for several reasons.

Nearly 100% reliability, no auto is as reliable as a revolver. I've had autos with 100% or nearly 100% reliability but they are more likely to have problems than revolvers. I have had autos that have had a hiccup or two, sometimes several, I've never had a revolver have a hiccup. With either you can get a round that doesn't go off- takes several steps to fix with the auto, with the revolver just pull the trigger to get to the next round. A gun stored for home defense may sit for a while, with an auto you need to keep it oiled (the oil can dry) and replace springs (especially in the mags) if you leave it loaded for any period of time, a revolver can sit for years and still go bang.

A revolver is easier to use under stress or when tired. There are no external safeties to worry about (granted, today there are some autos without external safeties either). It is also easier to tell if its loaded (easier means quicker, quicker means quicker to action, quicker to action can mean life or death).

That said, I'm also shocked to hear about jamming with your P95. I've heard of some problems with the polymer Rugers in .45 but not in 9mm. Anyway if you want an auto there are good options.

Another Ruger. The metal P-series (P 89 in 9mm, P90 in .45, P93 in 9mm, P94 in 9mm or .40) give almost revolver like reliability on a budget. If I was you I'd even consider another P95. I had a P89 that I had zero problems with in 2000-3000 rounds (I didn't keep exact count of what I shot but I shot it quite a lot in the 6 months or so that I owned it). A buddy had a P90 that was also a good gun. I can't say for sure that he had zero problems with it, but he never complained about it (and he is one to be loud about perceived problems) and when I shot it (many hundreds of rounds) I never had a problem and he never had a problem while I was there. From what I've heard from other Ruger owners that kind of reliablity isn't unusual.

Get a CZ. CZ makes very accurate, very reliable, very nice guns. The fit and finish is excellent. Classy guns. The trigger is very nice for DA/SA. I had 2 hiccups during break in of my CZ75 and nothing in the 2500-3000 rounds after that, I had a hiccup in my CZ 40 in the second box of ammo, nothing since. Most owners have very positive experiences, in fact many become addicted and buy many CZs.

SIG. If you can afford it they are supposed to be incredible. I don't own one but I've heard great things about them. Classy guns. I hope to get a SIG 239 within a year or two.

Glock. Ugly, bad trigger pull, you love it or hate it (very little in between), maybe not the best choice for a beginner (due to the trigger design along with the lack of external safeties), but very reliable gun. Close to the reliability of a revolver. I don't own one but you can't miss their reputation.

Get a nice .38spl or .357 revolver and load it with .38+Ps. All the benefits of a revolver, good defensive strength, and classy. Probably the least expensive option. There are many nice used ones out there for around $220-250 for a very good .38 (around $200 if cosmetics don't matter to you) and $250-300 for a nice .357. New you can get a Taurus 82 (.38) for under $300 and a Taurus 65 (.357) for just over $300. I live in an area that tends to be overpriced and I recently picked up a very nice (though the finish is slightly worn) Colt Police Positive Special for only $175, I saw a nice Taurus 82 (used) for $199 and some S&W M10s with worn finishes and beat up grips but good mechanically for $200 so bargains can be had. If the 6 round capacity bothers you get two or three at these prices for about the price of one of the autos.
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Old July 20, 2002, 06:46 PM   #19
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If a gun jams often at the range, it will most likely jam when you really need it and will cost you your life or the life of a loved one. I don't know about you, but mine and my families life is worth a HELL of a lot more than the price of ANY gun.

I just got a Beretta 96, and while I haven't shot it yet, I'm totally confident in it, as it is used by countless agencies all over the world. You can bet that if I had a recurring problem with it, I'd send it back to Beretta or the place I got it from, and if that didn't fix it, I'd get another gun.

I'd also recommend a 12 for HD. I also just got a Mossberg pump.

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Old July 20, 2002, 06:52 PM   #20
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Like RAE says....nothing wrong with your SRH.
With appropriate ammo of course.

Sam
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Old July 20, 2002, 07:51 PM   #21
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It would help if you would:

1. Describe the type of 'jam'.

2. Tell what kind of ammo are you using.

I've had 2 or 3 Ruger P series pistols and have never had a jam except for shooting one box of cheapo ammo. About every 10th round wouldn't chamber.
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Old July 20, 2002, 09:16 PM   #22
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The issue is not the gun it is you. If you do not have confidence in a semi-auto it will affect your execution should a critical situation arise. At that point in time you will wonder if it will jam and that hesitation could be fatal.

Suggestion: Get some firearm training incl. the mechanics of the pistol, testing of ammo type, jam clearing procedures, range time. During this time assess your mindset as you become more knowledgeable. At the end you make the decision, we can't make it for you. Just remember that any gun can malfunction.
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Old July 20, 2002, 09:29 PM   #23
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Welcome to TFL!

I'm still trying to figure out how to get a well maintained Ruger P95 to jam -- or a neglected one for that matter.

Disassemble it, including the mags. Clean it. Lube it. Get a box of Winchester white box ammo from Wal-Mart (100 for $11) and check it out again. If you can get it to jam, call Ruger or a knowledgeable friend.
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