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Old February 2, 2013, 11:14 PM   #1
Join Date: June 23, 2008
Posts: 37
Ruger SR40 & SR40C Review

My thoughts on these 2 guns after only 100 rds. Yours may differ and this is not a bash/glamour review for either (just info).

Tested 3 new guns that I purchased recently:
-Ruger SR40 (full size)
-Ruger SR40C (compact)
-Springfield XDM .40 5.25 inch barrel competition.

Quick bio:I've been shooting the .40 cal since 1990 from a handful of brands during 10 years of USPSA competition in limited class as well as .38 super in open class. I was a sandbagging master class ability wise but enough bad matches kept me a high A class shooter. Many top 1st-3rd placings in local, state, area matches 1990-2000 and #2 man represented Air Force Action Pistol Team. I shoot most guns very well and despise gun & equip malfunctions over the years and learned to tweek alot myself. On with my review.

Disassembled both guns and checked for lube and no excess noticed.
Day 1 range-small to med hands will love this grip feel since small checkering feels smooth while still supplies grip vs the big longer grips front to back is a a little shorter and allows good reach to trigger on both guns. The only difference between sr40C and sr40 is shorter barrel on "C" and shorter grip on "c" but can use 15 rd mag w/sleeve to make it same handle length as SR40

-both guns have had the ramp and throat polished even though they were not bad, they both hand cycled (med speed rough brand new) and I have the right tools. After my feed ramp job, they both fed smooth even before first shots. The brand new Springfield xdm .40 longslide fed the best and smoothest during hand cycling.

-both guns require a stout smack to seat a fully loaded 9 or 15 rd mag but not horrible. This seems to be a common issue over the recent years due to the manf cramming the most rounds and to keep handle length less, over crams the # of bullets into a mag and no extra room for a full mag and compressed spring. The reason I think this is with old springfield P9 .40's (POS by the way due to parts always breaking), STI .40, STI .38 sup open, or other staggered 1911's, I always had some room left with full loaded mags which made mag reloads more reliable.

-Fired total of 75 rds thru both SR40 & SR40C and Spgfld xdm .40.
-spgfield xdm longslide-no FTF, FTE, FT fire
-SR40C & SR40
--at least 10 of the 75 rounds i fired went click from both rugers
. Now this was with mostly my reloads from all three guns and only 20 rds were amer eagle factory from all three guns. I fired appx 25 thousand rounds of my reloads over the years and have always used "small rifle primmers" with no issues from other guns. I use them for hotter loads since they are a little stiffer and less primer bleed. I used a combo of 180 gr lead and jacketed reloads, 4.2 gr hodgdon clays powder (4.0 for lead), oal 1.120, fed sml rifle prim w med crimp. Cycling was fine in all three guns but on the 2nd range day with high winds and lots of dust & sand blowing the rugers both started to have lockup issues yet the xdm had none. Zero misfires with exact same ammo from xdm.

-I think the rugers have a weak firing pin setup that is only suitable for soft primers and still is a liability with those. Do not use primers that are considered on the harder side in either small pistol & definitly not small rifle primers. My primers were set good and hard and the xdm had no issues with the same lot of reloads. I have never experienced the amount of misfires in over 70,000 rounds from 1990-2000 between 10 guns total as in these rugers. I've looked online now and wish I had done so earlier and see there are some scattered issues with misfires and maybe getting a higher pound trigger spring is the answer, but jeeeeez, come on factories, do some real f---k--g testing on multiple guns will ya. The ruger shot pretty accurate after I peened the rear site over since they shot way left. I will try some winchester small pistol next time and see if this problem goes away. If not will send back. I also had to disassemble both rugers and the xdm to wash them out from the amount of dust & sand that was blowing around and inspected the firing pin holes in both rugers and there will be no excuses for me if they have any more misfires. I have no room for a gun that won't go bang. Remember for me a gun should hand cycle medium speed without jamming. If a gun doesn't I make it that way or get rid of it. bumpy means still bumpy during shooting. Most of these guns parts people claim have to shoot it 200-500 rds means they are not the right specs (most of the parts are "hardend" steel and don't break in or wear down much if at all). Good looking and handling guns except for the fickle cycling during high wind/dirt times and the misfires. After searching the internet, I see enought problems with the ruger trigger mechanism that tells me the have some ruger lots that are fine and other have problems. I think the old model ruger P series was more reliable. Sad to say the croation made xdm seems most reliable of the 3 and for now reloads are out with my rugers. If you want a report on the taurus tcp .380 or xdm .40 from me a few years ago, do a search.

Last edited by AirForce2; February 2, 2013 at 11:40 PM.
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Old February 3, 2013, 05:52 AM   #2
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Join Date: February 8, 2000
Location: Tucson Arizona
Posts: 1,621
I have two xd pistols that will get occasional misfires if I use winchester small rifle primers. I have had the same issue with russian pistol primers in my cz pistols which have lightened main springs. I just stick with winchester pistol primers and they all run fine.
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Old February 3, 2013, 11:19 AM   #3
Join Date: June 23, 2008
Posts: 37

I'm going to order 2 increased 20% power "heavy striker springs" from Galloway Precision and see if this helps per some other reviews. I'd hate to not be able to use my reloads esp w/price & non avail of reloading components lately and I have mostly sml rifle primers for now. I've seen where others have replaced the springs but doesn't really say much on the results. I will have some results over the next month and post up. If I have any more fail to fire after new springs with reloads or new box ammo, I will be done with both of these guns. The recoil springs feel kinda light to me especially when gun gets a little dirty and during the last 1/4 inch before going into battery, which is where all my fail to feeds happened (again it was extreme wind & dust/dirt blowing round). If the trigger misfire goes away I think I will have to get a replacement guide rod that allows spring changes. All 3 guns were washed out with hots water & soap and firing pin components all inspected so next time there will be no excuses.
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Old February 9, 2013, 06:11 AM   #4
Join Date: June 23, 2008
Posts: 37
My xdm did impress me though

I must reinterate, the xdm impressed me with this much dirt, sand, grit blowing around and it was brand new and I felt confident with it way more that the rugers just from a function standpoint regardless of misfires in the ruger. The rugers SR for now is a fair weather gun for me at least for now. My springfield after my feed ramp job cycle smooth as butter and I can slow cycle and sneak rounds into the chamber. I did a feed ramp job on both rugers and they feed much better even before I went thru first rounds but they don't cycle like the xdm when dirt and dust are flying for sure and it's wasn't a feed ramp issue it's was lockup due to dirt that stopped the rugers. That's the way all of my guns would run if I had a gun factory. This xdm feels way broken in already after no rounds thru it. remember all three guns were brand new and the breakin of a gun is crap to me. If the gun is built right, all the "hardened metal" is broken in an shaved in first few rounds.
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Old March 11, 2013, 10:30 AM   #5
Join Date: June 23, 2008
Posts: 37
Ruger SR40c & SR40 Misfire update

Well after a full rinsing under sink sprayer and inspection/cleaning including firing pin removal due to the hellish sand & wind day from the first post, I'll say that there was no over greasing from factory and the day I sent them off to ruger I shot the SR40c and SR40 w/20 rds each of my reloads and 50 rds each of winches white box and no misfires from either one, but the hits on the small rifle primered loads for sure hit lighter. My guess is some metal shavings likely still in the gun new from factory was the main cause preventing the firing pin from getting a good solid hit. There is little room for firing pin travel thru the breech no matter how clean. The firing pin goes thru just enough for a perfect hit and not more. Since I forgot to measure length of orig firing pins I had no way to measure spring poundage, don't know if the new ones are any longer but visually appear same length sticking thru when fired.

I had both guns back in 2 weeks and both had firing pin group and mag insert firing pin safety block replaced. One of the guns had a few more trigger part internals replaced. I asked ruger to check the safety systems on both as well. My curiosity got the best of me and I called the AZ plant and talked to a lead tech who happened to work on one of my guns (diff initials of tech who worked each gun). I asked him did the replaced parts vary from the initial ones ie...improved, longer firing pin, higher pound firing spring, or change in spec from initial parts. The answer was "no the parts are the same exact parts, just put new ones in better or improved. He said maybe one of the parts was off or something on orig pin or spring..

I appreciated the feedback from him and the turnaround was great. I mentioned to him that I'd seen scattered issues on this same misfire problem and he seemed honest versus the "politically directed answer or misleading info some give". With this new info I decided to replace the factory firing pin springs with the Galloway Precision SR spring just to have the added confidence. Maybe it was some "new gun shavings" or "weak springs" but 2 same design guns with same initial problem while brand new xdm had none with same ammo in my opinion mean it could be improved. Since this is the only semi auto I have owned where the firing pin can only strike thru the hole what looks like the perfect amount to get a good hit, I feel especially new or with minor shavings in the area of the firing pin (which all guns is possible), these new guns likely had some "new break in" shavings that reduced the already shallow or just enough pin travel causing less force. Doens't mean most will have no problems, but I trust new manf ammo to go bang more than reloads and if you have factory ammo that ever doesn't go bang it was likely not the bullets fault for light primer hits and new ammo misfire in pistols is rarely bullet manf, yet I've had a small # of issues w/my reloads tho rare, have never had rem, win, fed, cci manf ammo to blame yet.
I also caution new SR owners about this item after gun assembly-I asked the tech "when reassembling both rugers in this order -unload chamber, mag, dry fire, removed slidestop pin, clean gun including firing pin removal assy, reassemble slide components, push down ejector, slide onto frame, insert slide stop, with closed slide then insert full mag and attempt to chamber a round, the gun fails to chamber a round causing a feed jam req mag removal and clearing live round because the firing pin potrudes thru the breech face causing the jam. Once mag is inserted, trigger fired and rack the gun again the firing pin resets and gun works as expected. In short, best to ensure the firing pin is reset and working to ensure if you just put a full mag in and then later decide to chamber live round it's not going to jam due to firing pin sticking thru while chambering. This is another quirk that I have never seen before and feel can cause a liability to us. I have never had this happen on several types of pistols during assembly before and found I could repeat this without disassembling the gun. It's likely a result of some of the additional safety features ruger has added but this was hopefully not a planned affect. To see this without disassembling gun just do this exactly each step:
1)with slide closed, an empty chamber, remove loaded mag, safety off, rack open then close slide
2)pull trigger (this does not hurt the weapon or hardened steel parts & confirmed with ruger tech, I already knew this from thousands of dry fires over years)
3)insert mag with bullet/s in mag
4)cycle slide to load a live round, gun feed jams under firing pin

I repeated this at time of writing this reply to ensure steps work on my guns.
workaround is per ruger: removed mag fully cycle slide to reset firing pin then can insert mag and cycles as normal. I don't like it and I told the ruger tech so. To many safety features causing a liability in my opinion. I will update range results and primer hits with the new galloway springs on the small rifle primers when I can. I also made my mags insert and eject easier by cutting off one full coil from bottom of each mag spring and polished the mag catch without removing it thru top of frame w/slide removed (dremel & eraser w/grinding bit) and just like same mod to my XDM full mag changes & ejects much better on ruger with one thumb. By no means am I pushing springfield as better or perfect either. All companies in my opinion make & test their guns ineffectively and are prone to problem lines, trust me I've seen some of them. In competition such as USPSA they guns that have weak areas will show themselves usually during a match requiring mods or early repairs.

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Old March 11, 2013, 11:46 AM   #6
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Join Date: September 28, 2012
Location: Colorado
Posts: 464
Re: Ruger SR40 & SR40C Review

Sorry to hear of your issues. My SR9c has been flawless, im just shy of 1000rds. Now i didnt do any polishing or anything, as it was my first firearm so im still learning. But so far im very happy with it and plan on buying the 40c. I hope you get them running smooth.
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Old March 11, 2013, 04:55 PM   #7
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Join Date: March 2, 2013
Location: Heart of Texas
Posts: 788
Yep, that's drag about the SR9s. My brother just passed on buying one recently. Maybe that was best.

BTW, I love the XDm and have the 4.5 model in .45 ACP and it's a joy to shoot even with +P loads. I only shoot handloads and I have some very accurate loads and the XDm feeds anything. Plus, there's the bonus that it completely functions with my favorite cast lead bullet, the 200 gr. SWC where some XD's are known to have issues feeding them reliably. The XDm .45s were modified specifically to handle SWCs.
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