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Old February 8, 2013, 09:25 PM   #1
Deaf Smith
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When did the SP-101 first be chamberd in .357?

I picked up a SP-101, in .38 Spl. with Sn 570-0xxxx, apparently one of the first runs. $319, tax included.

But when did they first change over to .357? Second year or third?

Thanks,

Deaf
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Old February 8, 2013, 10:25 PM   #2
Nanuk
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It was 1988, have no idea on SN.
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Old February 9, 2013, 05:43 PM   #3
Deaf Smith
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Production didn't start till 1989.

http://www.ruger.com/service/product.../RE-SP101.html

Ah.. I found it.

1989 SP101 released and chambered in 38 Special only
~1991 SP101 changed to use .357 but only 125gr bullets due to cylinder length
~1992 SP101 frame and cylinder lengthened to use all .357 ammo.

So the .38 version was only produced for 2 years. And that is why I see them for $600. Good, I just bought one, first year prod, at a pawn shop for $319, tax included. And at the range, it shot dead on!

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Deaf
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Old February 9, 2013, 08:35 PM   #4
Armybrat
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Bought my SP101 .357 new in 1993 - #571-41XX

Sweet little magnum, built like the proverbial tank.
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Old February 10, 2013, 01:15 AM   #5
Nanuk
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Quote:
Production didn't start till 1989.
Beats me I could swear I looked at one in a Gun shop in 1988 while at the BP academy that had a 38 length cylinder and was chambered in 357.
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Old February 10, 2013, 08:41 AM   #6
GP100man
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Here`s my 3" 38 first yr. 101, as I understand it only 700 3"s were produced in `89, but I have `bout 340 in it .

It has turned into my everyday carry peice with the help of a MTR IWB holster.

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Old February 10, 2013, 06:29 PM   #7
Jim March
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Right, the earliest ones had a 38-length cylinder but it was strong enough for 357Mag, just not long enough for the heavierweight rounds. Incidentally, the 125gr all-copper hollowpoints will not work in those early SP101 "357" guns as the round is longer than normal for a 125 (copper is less dense than lead).

The 2nd gen types have a longer frame and cylinder and are true 357s.

ALSO: there were 38s produced on the long frame too, for sales overseas where the 357 is banned and for some security and police contracts. I believe the 38Spl SP101 is still cataloged - if not batches are still made for those special purposes and over-runs hit the market.
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Old February 11, 2013, 10:29 PM   #8
Deaf Smith
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Thanks Jim.

I saw at a gun show a Ruger GP-100 3 inch adjustable sighted revolver in .38 Special. Might heavy for .38s but I bet it was for overseas to.

Would have liked it but $500+ I just could not justify a .38 at that price unless it was a Colt or older S&W.

Deaf
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