Ruger LCP II Review
Part 5 - Range Tests
May 7, 2017

Ruger LCP II Review

For range testing the LCP I wanted to get a basic understanding of accuracy and then see how well I could put lead on steel plates at my pistol range.  For the accuracy portion of the test I selected some of the same ammunition used in my original LCP Custom review and any of these types of ammunition could be used for defense purposes.  My personal preference is Hornady Critical Defense and it is in most of my carry pistols because after reviewing handguns for several years I have come to the opinion that it typically shoots good and later you will see that was also the case in this pistol.

 

This next photo shows the ammo selected for accuracy testing.  I also had a box of Tulammo which I used (but not shown) at the steel target range and afterward I regretted not getting some chronograph data on the Tula because I was running into issues with the LCP II not reliably cycling the Tula and feel it may be due to lower velocity (energy) on Tula's part.

Figure 1
Ruger LCP II Accuracy Test Ammo

My range setup is shown below.  The chronograph was setup about 10 feet from the muzzle and the targets setup at 7 yards from the muzzle.  I was more interested in getting a feel for accuracy and seeing where the sights printed than doing exhaustive bench testing, so I only shot a couple of groups with each type of ammunition.

Figure 2
Ruger LCP II Range Testing

This next table summarized my results.  I was very pleased with the accuracy potential of this pistol and shot an average 6-shot group of 2.05" for all groups shot.  I started with the Winchester first then shot the Hornady American Gunner and then the Hornady Critical Defense and found it interesting that as I continued to shoot, my group averages continued to be better.  There is a good chance that this is attributed to me getting an increased sensitivity of the trigger break.  Overall my group average was slightly better on the LCP II than my LCP Custom which is probably due to the better trigger pull on the LCP II.

Ammunition Velocity1 (ft/sec) 6-Shot Group Size2 (in)
Advertised
(Barrel)
Measured Std
Dev
Max Min Avg
Hornady Critical Defense 380 AUTO 90gr FTX® (#90080) 1000 (4") 872 8 1.73 1.07 1.40
Hornady American Gunner 380 AUTO 90gr XTP® (#90104) 1000 (4") 875 18 2.33 1.81 2.07
Winchester Train & Defend 380 AUTO 95gr FMJ Flat Nose (W380T) 950 (3.75") 846 23 2.81 2.57 2.69
Average All Groups = 2.05
1 - Velocity Measures 10 feet from muzzle
2 - 6-shot groups shot from 7 yards from a simple bench rest position

This next photo shows two 6-shot groups shot with the Hornady Critical Defense ammunition and I was shocked to only be able to discern 5 shots in each case.  Believe me, I shot the full magazine which is 6 shots at each target and have the chronograph data to prove it.  Bottom line is that the Hornady Critical Defense ammunition shot great and the standard deviation of 8 ft/sec is a testimony to the consistency of this ammunition.  In general, my groups were coming in about 1" to the left and 1" high.  Since this is not a target pistol and since most situations where you will actually need this pistol will be much closer, I feel the sight picture for fixed sights and point of impact were very good.

Figure 3 - 6-Shot Groups of Hornady Critical Defense at 7 Yards
Ruger LCP II Hornady Critical Defense

Once I was finished with the bench testing, I moved over to my steel target pistol range and put a couple of boxes through the pistol.  The pistol was controllable and if I did my part, then it did it's part and I put many rounds on the steel.  The cases seemed to eject over my right shoulder and very high.  As I mentioned earlier, I had a box of Tulammo 91gr FMJ ammunition that did not cycle the side properly.  Looking back I wish I had chronographed some of these rounds to see if there was a velocity difference.  The other defensive ammunition cycled without issue.

 

Thoughts

Everything that was great about shooting the original LCP is even better with the LCP II.  It has plenty of accuracy potential and I found it to be very controllable.  The slightly wider grip felt better in my hands and the lighter trigger pull is always a plus in my opinion.  It cycled all the premium ammunition without issue but did struggle cycling the value Tulammo FMJs.

For more detailed photos and commentary, make sure you check out the other parts of this review and feel free to leave comments below.  The following links are provided to help you see other parts of this review. 


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