Ruger LC9 Review With LaserMax
Part 1 - Introduction, Specifications and Summary
March 25, 2012
In January of 2011,
Sturm, Ruger &
Company, Inc. (Ruger)
announced the addition of a compact 9mm pistol called the
LC9 to their line of centerfire pistols. The Ruger LC9 can
be considered the big brother to the popular Ruger LCP with the
LC9 giving a substantial increase in muzzle energy (about 66% more)
by being chambered in the 9mm Luger cartridge compared to the .380
Auto for the LCP. Yet, the Ruger LC9 is still clearly a
compact pistol. Although I was very tempted to get an
for a review last year, for some reason I never got around to reviewing this
compact 9mm pistol. In November of 2011,
announced the launch of their new CenterFire laser series with
the first models being designed specifically for the Ruger LC9 and
LCP pistols. Ruger now offers these pistol and laser combos as a
new models for both the LC9 and LCP Pistols. For me, the
combination of a true compact 9mm pistol from Ruger and the addition
of the new LaserMax CenterFire lasers made the Ruger LC9 With
LaserMax Pistol a "must review" for 2012.
The Ruger LC9 Pistol with LaserMax is basically
a double action only, hammer fired, locked breech compact 9mm pistol
that incorporates a red laser below the barrel which is attached
to the trigger guard. MSRP on the LC9 with LaserMax (Model
LC9-LM) is $525 based on the Ruger website. Fortunately, you
can find this pistol online for between $375 and $425. You
will probably find it at your local gun store for closer to the $425
During my reviews I like to compare my results
to the manufacturers claims where possible so the following text in
colored italics was taken directly from the
on 2/25/12 and gives an Overview, Key Features, and Specifications
for the Ruger LC9 Pistol With LaserMax. The
are my way to keep up with details that I have covered in this
review with either photos, commentary or both. I may also add
commentary after these marks as necessary to explain some items if
- The LC9 is a double-action-only, hammer-fired, locked-breech
pistol with a smooth trigger pull.
- Control and confident handling of the Ruger LC9 are
accomplished through reduced recoil and aggressive frame
checkering for a positive grip in all conditions.
- The Ruger LC9 features smooth "melted" edges for ease of
holstering, carrying and drawing.
- COMPACT, the LC9 is just slightly larger (less than 1" in
both height and length) than the popular LCP.
- RUGGED CONSTRUCTION with blued, through-hardened alloy steel
slide and black, one-piece high-performance, glass-filled nylon
- DOVETAILED, HIGH VISIBILITY 3-DOT SIGHT SYSTEM with
windage-adjustable rear sight and fixed front sight.
- CHECKERED GRIP FRAME provides a secure and comfortable grip.
- FINGER GRIP EXTENSION FLOORPLATE can be added to the
magazine for comfort and grip.
- SAFETY FEATURES include internal lock, manual safety,
magazine safety and loaded chamber indicator which provides
visual and tactile indication that chamber is loaded.
- LASERMAX CENTERFIRED LASER model features factory fitted
trigger-guard-mounted red diode laser.
- ALSO INCLUDES: soft case.
- Catalog Number: LC9-LM
- Model Number: 3206
- Caliber: 9mm Luger
+P capable but on a limited basis if you
want your pistol to last, see
the Instruction Manual.
- Slide Material: Through-Hardened Alloy Steel
- Slide Finish: Blued
- Barrel Material: Alloy Steel
- Barrel Finish: Blued
- Barrel Length: 3.12"
- Length: 6.00"
- Width: 0.90"
0.90" is across the frame/slide.
The width across the widest point on the grip is 0.97" and the
width across the frame including the manual safety was 1.05".
- Height: 4.50"
The pistol measured 4.46" in height with
the flat floor plate and 4.91" with the finger extension floor
- Weight: 17.60 oz.
The review pistol actually weighed in at
- Sights: Adjustable 3-Dot/LaserMax CenterFire™
- Capacity: 7+1
- Grip Frame: Black, High Performance, Glass-Filled Nylon
- Twist: 1:10" RH
- Grooves: 6
- MA Approved & Certified: No
- CA Approved: Yes
- Suggested Retail: $525.00
You can find this pistol online for
between $375 and $425
This review is broken down into multiple
parts with this page providing links to each part along with an
overall summary of the specifications, pros and cons, and my final "bottom
comments. Make sure you take time to checkout the other parts
of the review because they contain many photos and
lots of commentary. Also, there is an extreme amount of detail in those
parts which is not covered on this page.
As you read these Pros and Cons below,
keep in mind that it is hard to keep my particular preferences from creeping in the
equation. Therefore, it is important that you take the time to
look at the other parts of this review so you can decide yourself on
items which may be more of a personal preference.
9mm +P capable on a limited basis to maintain
good endurance life of the pistol. Practice with regular
ammunition and then load up with +P to carry or have on hand.
This version comes with the LaserMax CenterFire Laser that makes
aiming fast, simple and possible with very little light.
Also this is a big plus for those who may not be as skilled with
Light weight, thin, compact.
Overall I feel disassembly is very
simple. Reassembly, basically the reverse of disassembly, was
also simple and I liked the tight firm fit that the LaserMax
assembly has on the trigger guard.
It has the accuracy capable of being a real carry pistol and has
been 100% reliable with every type of ammunition I have put
through the pistol.
Pro/Con/Comments (you decide)?:
For safety features, the LC9 has a loaded
chamber indicator, internal lock with key, manual safety, firing
pin safety, and magazine safety. Each person has their own
preferences with safety mechanisms and mine tend to be on the
conservative side so I consider all the safety features in the
LC9 to be either good or of no negative consequence.
Trigger pull was smooth at an average of 6.9 pounds. The
trigger pull length seems a little long, but it is manageable
With the Ruger LC9 disassembled to the
normal level for cleaning, the mechanisms seem very simple and
Ruger did a nice job of keeping a simple appearance.
- The LaserMax CenterFire laser is a
great addition that is very appealing to less trained shooter
when it comes to aiming, but the bottom line is that you still
need to have good form and trigger control to be able to put
your rounds on target.
The pistol comes with only one magazine.
The only thing I didn't like on
disassembly was that you need a tool to press out the takedown pin
and once out the pin becomes a small loose part.
The Ruger LC9 with LaserMax Pistol is a
quality pistol just like you would expect from Ruger. It was
accurate and reliable which is something you would want with a self
defense pistol. It being capable of 9mm +P ammunition adds to
it's stopping power. Although the trigger pull may seem a
little long, the trigger pull was not something that I would
consider a deal breaker when making a decision on your next pistol.
The addition of the LaserMax gives the LC9 "low to no" light
capability and helps to make aiming simple. A word of warning,
a laser should never be a substitute for learning how to shoot the
iron sight, and if you want to hit your target even with a laser you
will need to practice so you have the skills and trigger control to
do so. If you are in the market for this type of pistol, I
recommend you take a close look at the Ruger LC9 the next time you
are at the gun store.
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