Testfire: Ruger SR40 Review

While it was hard to pick a best load for the SR40, Hornady’s 155-grain XTP turned in the best combination of accuracy and muzzle energy.

While it was hard to pick a best load for the SR40, Hornady’s 155-grain XTP turned in the best combination of accuracy and muzzle energy.

Highly visible three-dot sights adorn the SR40 slide. The front sight is dovetailed and is, thus, easily replaceable, if desired.

Highly visible three-dot sights adorn the SR40 slide. The front sight is dovetailed and is, thus, easily replaceable, if desired.

The trim little pistol weighs a mere 27.2 ounces with an empty magazine. Loaded with 15 rounds, it tips the scales at 36.4 ounces. The 4.1-inch barrel has six grooves with a 1:16 right-hand twist. Slides are made of either alloy or stainless steel, depending on finish. My test gun had the stainless slide, and I can report that it had a lustrous and uniformly brushed finish that is very attractive. A black nitride version is also available.

Another nice feature is the reversible backstrap. The pistol comes with the arched side out, but, if you prefer a flat backstrap (as you’d find with the original M-1911), just push out a little pin, turn the backstrap over, and reinstall. It takes all of about 30 seconds, if you go really slow.

The magazine release is ambidextrous. Thankfully, when it is pressed from either side, the magazine is instantly launched out of the grip like it’s jet propelled. Insertion of a magazine is slick and effortless.

The gun, by the way, is shipped in a hard plastic case with two 15-round magazines.
The SR40 has a magazine disconnect system that prevents firing if the magazine is removed. The gun will “snap” with the magazine removed, but it won’t fire with a live round in the chamber.

The rear sight is held in a dovetail and is drift-adjustable for windage, click-adjustable for elevation. It provides a clean sight picture for fast, accurate shooting.

The rear sight is held in a dovetail and is drift-adjustable for windage, click-adjustable for elevation. It provides a clean sight picture for fast, accurate shooting.

Also, the trigger pull is not the same with the magazine removed as when firing a loaded gun. Importantly, the owner’s manual specifically cautions that dry-firing a SR series pistol without a magazine “may result in damage or unnecessary wear to the magazine disconnect mechanism and/or striker,” and may get you exiled to the Gulag. In other words, don’t do it. The SR40 can be dry-fired without damage to the pistol, when an empty magazine is in place.

An accessory rail is provided at the bottom front of the grip frame, to which the user can hang all manner of accoutrements like a laser sight, high-intensity light, or a pistol bayonet. Up top, it seems to be an article of faith that all defensive pistols have fixed sights, never mind that they don’t always hit where they look and you can’t change them, but guess what? The SR40 has excellent three-dot sights with a fully adjustable rear.

There’s a click-adjustment screw for elevation and a set screw that must be loosened to drift the sight for windage. The rear sight adjustment worked like a charm, and it stayed put. Another revelation is that the width of the rear-sight notch is actually wide enough to see light on either side of the front sight. Both sights are dovetailed in place, so fussbudgets can install after-market replacements, if desired.

One thought on “Testfire: Ruger SR40 Review

  1. flashback

    You have nicely echoed my sentiments about the SR40 which I have owned for going on four years now. With upwards of 9000 rds through my all black SR40 (dubbed Darth Ruger) at various IDPA matches and numerous defensive pistol classes it has never let me down. I highly recommend the Ruger SR line to others.

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