Ruger SR9 Pistol Review
Part 5 - Internal Features
January 26, 2013

Ruger SR9 Review

So far I have covered what's in the box, external features and disassembly of the Ruger SR9 Pistol.  In this part of the review I will stay focused on the internal features of the Ruger SR9 Pistol.  I have tried to include many photos so you can study them and form your own opinion about this pistol.

 


Slide Assembly

The slide is an investment casting and is made from 415 stainless steel which is a special proprietary blend that is somewhere between 410 and 420 stainless steel.  The exterior has a very nice look and finish.  In certain areas on the interior, I could tell there was a slight roughness associated with a casting, but nothing I would consider to be negative on the quality of this pistol.  Also, I could tell that critical areas were final machined to maintain critical interface features (i.e. slide slots, barrel contact areas, breech face, and I'm sure more).  You can see for yourself by looking at the photos below.

Figure 1
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 2
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 3
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 4
Ruger SR9 Review

This next photo shows three key internal components worth pointing out; A - Striker Blocker, B - Magazine Disconnect, and C - Striker Key.  The striker blocker prevents the firing pin (striker) from impacting a round unless the trigger is pulled fully to the rear.  The magazine disconnect must be pressed up by a magazine for the striker to be able to impact a primer.  The strike key is where the trigger bar touches the striker.

Figure 5
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 6
Ruger SR9 Review

The side assembly can be disassembled further as shown in Part 4 by removing the striker cover, striker assembly and magazine disconnect.

Figure 7
Ruger SR9 Review

The photo below give you a good look at the slide internal areas with the striker assembly removed.

Figure 8
Ruger SR9 Review


Striker Cover

This is a polymer part with a steel plate integrally molded to give it strength.

Figure 9                                                          Figure 10
Ruger SR9 Review   Ruger SR9 Review


Magazine Disconnect

Figure 11
Ruger SR9 Review


Striker Assembly

The striker is made from stainless steel and has a complex geometry to work in conjunction with the striker blocker and magazine disconnect.

Figure 12
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 13
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 14
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 15
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 16
Ruger SR9 Review


Barrel

The barrel on the Ruger SR9 measures 4.14".  Since barrel length is measured from the end of the barrel to the breech face,  the barrel length is basically the total length of the parts below.  The barrel is an investment casting which is made from SAE 410 (or UNS4100) stainless steel in Ruger's Pine Tree Casting facility.  I have read several other reviews that talk about castings in a negative light.  A casting does not always equal inferior quality or durability.  The F-22 aircraft, the most advanced aircraft in the world, "incorporated 61 castings on the F-22; many of them utilized in critical structural applications."  Another thing to remember is that Ruger has it's own casting facility and has been in the castings business since 1963.  Ruger is not some low budget import company that was low bid on a casting contract.  My last point is that Ruger is responsible and liable for their products.  I know everyone wants to make a profit, but I don't think Ruger would take on the risk of putting an inferior critical component in their pistol.

The photos below show the barrel from all sides.  The barrel is a casting and the critical areas get final machined into the configuration shown below.  This machining is clearly seen by looking at the exterior barrel surface (shiny).  Also, each barrel gets proof tested and you can see the proof mark "R" stamped into the barrel in the photo below.  I have read several other reviews that comment negatively on the matte finish of the exposed barrel chamber area.  My impression is that the surface finish is better matte than polished because the matte finish more closely matches the upper surface of the slide.  I also would not consider this to be a true negative aspect of the pistol, but instead just a matter of personal preference.

Figure 17
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 18
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 19
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 20
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 21                                  Figure 22     
Ruger SR9 Review   Ruger SR9 Review


Guide Rod Assembly

Figure 23
Ruger SR9 Review


Takedown Pin Assembly

Figure 24
Ruger SR9 Review


Frame Assembly

The pistol frame is manufactured from glass-filled nylon.  Glass-filled is a good thing because this increases structural and impact strength along with rigidity of the frame.  There are lots of photos below to show the inside details of this assembly.  If I were you, I would take Ruger's recommendation and not do any more disassembly than what you see.  After you study the interior mechanism, they are actually very simple, but again I don't recommend any further disassembly.  I'm not going to talk about every detailed feature of this assembly, but I will cover some items I think are significant.

In the photo below, you can see that Ruger has a metallic Cam-block (1).  This is a high stress and high wear area so the metallic part will be more durable than just the nylon frame.  This block is also pinned in place by three different pins spread apart which gives it an even stronger attachment footprint to the frame.

Figure 25
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 26
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 27
Ruger SR9 Review

In the photo below you can see the Slide Stop (2).  By inserting a magazine, you will see how the slide stop moves up when the magazine follower comes in contact with the stop.  The Ejector (3) is shown in the up position and you can also see the Trigger Bar (4).  If you look closely, you can see how the manual safety blocks the Trigger Bar from moving when the safety is engaged.

Figure 28
Ruger SR9 Review

If you hold the trigger in the forward position and pull back on the Inner Trigger (5) (trigger safety), by looking into the frame from a view similar to below, you can see how the Inner Trigger blocks the Outer Trigger (normal trigger) from being pulled by contacting the frame unless the Inner Trigger is pulled.  You can also press the Magazine Latch Button and watch how the Magazine Latch (6) moves to the latch and unlatched positions.

Figure 29
Ruger SR9 Review

Figure 30
Ruger SR9 Review

 

Thoughts

Overall, I believe the internal mechanisms of the Ruger SR9 pistol are relatively simple.  The use of stainless steel and polymer components should ensure that the critical parts remain corrosion free for many years to come.

For more detailed photos and commentary, make sure you check out the other parts of this review and feel free to leave comments on my Reader's Comments page.  The following links are provided to help you see other parts of this review. 


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