My first pistol, a gift from my bride long ago, was an early production long-barreled Standard (Mark I) Ruger .22. I loved that pistol from first sight, touch and trigger press. It trained friends and family for many years, and still does, with nary a hiccup or bobble!
Over the years I have owned and written about many of Ruger’s firearms, and each has followed in the footsteps of my first—working flawlessly. Ruger has grown far beyond the company that produced my early pistol, offering hunting, self-defense and military/LEO firearms undreamed of before.
Back in the fall of 2007, when Ruger introduced its first striker-fired pistol, the SR9 pistol, it caused quite a stir. Until the SR9’s arrival, everyone “in the know” was betting there would never be such a critter wearing the Ruger logo.
Making use of their extensive experience with metal castings and polymer molding, Ruger stepped out with a pistol that became an immediate hit. Demand was high for the SR9, but still the public clamored for variations including smaller sizes and larger calibers.
Ruger listened to the consumer and the more compact SR9c (June 2010) and the SR40 .40 S&W chambered full-size version (October 2010) followed. Recently Ruger took the obvious step of chopping the SR40 down to the SR40c, lobbing off 0.70 inches of length, 0.91 of butt, and 3.85 ounces of weight in the process.
With a 3.4-inch barrel, the new SR40c may be smaller than its progenitor and weigh only about 24 ounces, but still displays the family heritage. The either carbon or stainless steel slide is precision machined from a casting, with hardening going deeper than typical (through hardened). Stainless slides have a brushed appearance, while steel versions are treated with Ruger’s Nitridox Pro Black finish.
The SR40c’s slide wears an effective set of dovetail mounted, black sights utilizing the three white dots pattern.
The front sight has small horizontal serrations, while the rear is elevation adjustable and nicely rounded to be snag-proof. Also atop the slide is the tactilely and visually detectable loaded chamber indicator that pops up when the chamber is full. The extractor is external, as on previous Ruger centerfire pistols, and the ejection port is generous. Sporting angled cocking serrations fore and aft, the slide of Ruger’s compact is also well dehorned. In fact, except for a small sharp edge on the shooter’s side of the front sight, there are really no sharp edges or points anywhere on the SR40c.
The SR40c’s striker is partially cocked by the slide’s rearward motion, with the balance of the striker rearward movement, before it snaps forward, resulting from pressing the trigger. In the partially cocked condition, you can see, but not feel, a circular “striker status indicator” in a tunnel in the rear of the slide. As the trigger is pressed rearward, the indicator protrudes from the back. Riding beneath the satin stainless steel barrel is a recoil spring captured on a full-length guide rod.
The SR40c’s trim polymer frame is black, glass-filled nylon with dished out areas on both sides of the grip adding to the trimness and further easing the reach to the trigger. The round, generous triggerguard is slightly undercut and encloses a trigger with an integral pivoting safety. In fact, there are three more safeties incorporated in the SR40c: magazine, striker block, and a minimally sized ambidextrous thumb safety. When applied, the thumb safety blocks the striker movement and locks the slide in position.