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First Look: Ruger LC9s

by G&A Online Editors   |  July 29th, 2014 61

Ruger_LC9s_F1Ruger has introduced a new companion to their popular LC9 with the addition of the striker-fired LC9s.

The Ruger LC9s was designed for shooters who prefer the feel and performance of a striker-fired pistol to hammer-fired double actions. The LC9s maintains similar dimensions and is compatible with all accessories, holsters and extended 9-round magazines made for the LC9.

Ruger’s new LC9s also features a familiar blued, hardened alloy steel slide, 3.12-inch barrel and dovetailed 3-dot sights. Its black, one-piece nylon checkered grip frame also maintains traditional LC9 appearance and ergonomics.

VIDEO: Ruger LC9s at the Range

While the LC9s retains many characteristics of its LC9 brethren, its striker-fired trigger mechanism boasts a shorter and lighter pull that breaks around 5.5-pounds. The LC9s also uses a trigger safety on the face of the trigger which must be engaged to fire the pistol.

Additional safety features of the LC9s include a manual safety selector, a magazine safety and a visual inspection port for identification of a loaded or empty chamber.

Available for a suggested retail price of $449, the LC9s comes with one 7-round magazine, a magazine grip extension and a soft case.

Look for a detailed review of the LC9s in an upcoming issue of Guns & Ammo and check out the photos (below) of Ruger’s new striker-fired LC9s.

  • Charles

    I prefer a gun that is more simple, the simpler the better. IMO KISS.
    The more you complicate something with all kinds of indicators or safeties when you only need 1, all it really does is just drive the price up.

    • jondarmes

      My sentiments exactly.

    • gtmerkley .

      and drives down the reliability.

  • Max Roberts

    IMHO this fixes some of the things I didn’t like about the LC9. May have to add one to the collection and compare.

  • Rivendel

    The thing I really like about my LC9 in the DA function. IMHO it’s a much safer design for round in chamber carry. The trigger pull on mine isn’t bad at all. I’ve put several hundred rounds through mine training with it and it is smooth and breaks clean. Also quite accurate for a short barreled carry pistol.

  • Mike Donatello

    I wonder if Ruger will sell kits to replace the original LC9 firing mechanism with the striker-driven design? I’m sure they’d rather sell an entirely new pistol, but I’d rather do a 20-minute swap of components for 1/3 the price. ;)

    • .357 magnum

      I called them about this and the components are not interchangeable

    • Carlos M. Principe

      I don’t see why not that might be the reason they are not selling this parts yet.

  • Tim Woodruff

    I like 9mm but after working in law enforcement in the past and knowing while I worked law enforcement we had a situation where a 38 special round bounced off of a guys head . I will stick with my Ruger LCR 357 magnum . I do have a Glock 42 380 as back up . I also have a Springfield XD .40 . Ruger does make nice guns but if you are in a bad situation and the guy that is attacking you is 300 lbs . I am not sure about a 9mm or 380 . But since I carry 2 light guns I have a choice of 380 or 357 magnum . A super light .40 would be nice .

    • MrSottobanco

      Do you think a 10mm outperforms a .357 magnum if one were concerned only for practicality in self-defense matters?

      • Mark York

        I have a Glock 20 in 10mm when loaded up to its potential the ballistics are on par with a 41mag and 15 rounds it’s pretty impressive. Check out Double Tap Ammo

    • .357 magnum

      I have learned how to conceal a .357 magnum Ruger GP 100

      • cjohnson44546

        how so? I have a GP 100 3 inch, and that thing is very hard to conceal without a jacket on, which is horrid in the current very hot weather.

        • .357 Magnum

          Wear it IWB cross draw style with a larger shirt, not too tight

          • cjohnson44546

            Guess it depends on your body… to get it IWB for me and not be painful, I have to wear pants two sizes too big… then it still hurts with my belt tight enough to stop my pants from falling. I can kind of do it with a 3speed holster, but its very uncomfortable and hurts after a while. I have no problem with thinner gun IWB, or ones without thick cylinders poking in on me

      • Danobro

        Yes, I’d like to know how that is accomplished also. please advise.

        • .357 Magnum

          You have to shift it forward toward your belt buckle and wear your shirt hanging outside. No one ever knows I have it on

          • .357 Magnum

            I wear it in cross draw style

    • Tony Kammerer

      I have a family member who was shot in the head with a .44 Mag by (one of) her husband(s) and had the bullet follow the outside of her skull from high forehead to top of her head. She’s had 2 more husbands since then.

      It’s not the caliber in such cases, but the odd angle.

    • cjohnson44546

      I like that… When I can carry 2 (most of the time) I have a 357 mag Rhino as my main gun, with a LCP as a second in my pocket… very similar as you except the Rhino has 6 rounds vs 5 in the LCR, and is easier to keep on target… just costs a lot more than a LCR

    • Keith E. Whisman

      Ugh, you don’t trust a 9MM because a .38Spec failed once. You have to ignore the hundreds of thousands of people killed by just one .38Spec round. If you really don’t feel safe, there are stories of pretty much all pistol calibers failing to stop a threat when dosed with a full magazine or all six shots from a revolver. I guarantee that even if the threat doesn’t just disappear into a pink mist after you shoot him, you will have a small chance to escape or that will be enough to end the encounter. I saw one video of a guy getting a .357 mag to the gut and running off not realizing he was going to die a hundred yards from where he got shot. The thing is that pistol bullets are tiny and weigh very little regardless of how many tons are exerted on the target on impact. Video and witness testimony has never reported any 200lb man being thrown back after getting hit by a bullet that mathematically delivers a ton of force on impact. So there is no magic bullet, just shot placement and a prayer.

  • joe s

    Sales of the LC9 must have slowed now it’s time to bring out the “new & improved” gun to get sales rolling again.

    • Keith E. Whisman

      Yeah, Az Firearms and Collectibles near the corner of Priest and University in Tempe, Az only had a couple of the LC9S’s but they had a huge stack of LC9’s, they even sold me a magazine from one of the LC9’s they had laying around so I could have a spare magazine. I love the trigger pull on this little gun.

  • joe s

    I do like the striker fire idea, and would have been interested if I didn’t have a LC9 already

    • .357 magnum

      Same here. I can shoot better with the 9 mm Smith & Wesson Shield. So, should I trade in my LC9 for the LC9s? Or go on and buy the Shield?

      • Doc

        I have both. I love carrying the LC9 but good first cold
        shot hits are rough. You really have practice a lot and often with it to stay proficient.
        It feels good and rides very flat to the body. You wouldn’t think 2 oz make a difference
        but I can feel it when I carry the shield over the LC9. I bought a shield just because
        of that long trigger and cold hits with the shield are quicker and more
        accurate out of leather… I want to put a Galloway trigger system in my LC9
        but to have them install it will cost me 1/2 of what the gun cost!!! I may
        still do it when I get some cash.

        I live in the Communist Republic of Kalifornia or I would
        buy the LC9s. I hate this state and will move out as soon as I can escape!!!!!

        • .357 magnum

          Don’t blame you, there seems to be to many restrictions in California.

      • Mooie’s Father

        .357 MAGNUM. You only live once. Buy the Shield and the LC9S. My Shield has a big dot sight and Crimson Trace. Just point and shoot two handed one handed. Improved my accuracy significantly. The key is trigger control and good grip. Tru Talon Grips tapes. Gives custom wrap. Trading in my LC9 for the new LC9S.

  • Town22

    Noting beats a DB380 for comfort in shorts.

  • guest

    I think doing away with the top pop-up rnd indicator is a plus but I don’t see the stupid trigger safety being an asset at all. What Ruger needs to do is get rid of the razor sharp edge on the back of the rear sight that can cut your hand easily. There is no way to file it off because of the rear dots. In my opinion the double action trigger is fine as is. All in all Ruger is a fine company and I love their new 1911 CMD. They just need to pay more attention to the little details that kill a perfect gun.

  • Fieldkorn

    Curious as to the recoil with this series.. I owned a Ruger .380 LCP for about one 50-round box of ammunition when I rushed to the next available gun show to dispose of it to some other hapless soul… My older brother did the same thing with a Kel Tek. If you guys can suffer “stout” recoil with your pieces, fine, have at it, I say. But I cannot, and neither can my wife. And though I generally do like my new Smith & Wesson .380 bodyguard its lo-ng and overly burdensome trigger pull is atrocious. As with so much in life, compromise is the order of the day.

    • Patriot

      I own an LCP 380…. has a CT laser to help with the accuracy due to the trigger action and recoil…. I still don’t like the trigger action… And, I own an LC9…. recoil is not a problem…. the DA trigger is… I like the way it carries, and the CT laser on it has helped me with the accuracy issues I have but that is still a problem compared to my XD9 – 3incher which is striker fired. I hope to be able to dry fire a new XD9S next week at a dealer I do business with…;.. I’m optimistic it will be a much more acceptable situation …. if it is, I’ll be replacing the existing LC9 with the new Striker version…. after I move the magazines, CT laser, and holsters over to the new LC9S… I like Ruger as a business they do stand behind their products very well…. I would not normally buy an early production unit, but I basically trust Ruger to deal with any early issues that might appear.

      The only reason I still own the LCP is that I don’t quite know what to do with a reasonable quantity of .380 ACP ammo I have on hand… including range, XTP defense and Hornady CDF rounds which are as good as it gets for defense, at least for a “mere” 80cents a round.

      • Fieldkorn

        Thanks, Patriot… I also use Hornady Critical Defense… It shoots very well in my .380 Bersa, which is my colder weather concealed carry pistol… I use this pistol with a shoulder harness, which I find amazingly comfortable as another one does with my 1911… My Smith & Wesson Bodyguard can be worn in a pants’ pocket so that is how I carry in the summer when I’m not wearing a jacket or zippered hoodie.. I really do like the Smith but I still dislike that heavy trigger…

    • cjohnson44546

      The newer LCP, like the one I have, has a fantastic trigger, and better sights. It still has the same recoil though of course because of its size.

  • guest

    I will say this about the LC9 ‘s double action. It is smoother than any DA revolver I ever had and beats all strikers I had and inc/9mmShield. Strikers always pull to the right with me (right hander). I see no advantage to the striker fired gun. Note:It started out on the cheap Sat night specials. Yeah I know it has been improved.

  • petru sova

    I congratulate Ruger they were the only ones smart enough to put a manual safety on another plasticky Glock look a like.

    • ArmTDog

      LC9s looks and feels nothing like a Glock. The Glocks are square and blocky and thick. The Lc9 series are think, small with curves and slopes. Not even close. But are great weapons

  • Keith E. Whisman

    Well I just bought one. It looks, feels and shoots great. I had to learn to like the safeties. With all the safeties I really feel safe throwing this in a pocket without a holster making an even smaller print and even easier draw. My first order of business is to invest in a good sweat proof finish so it doesn’t rust to shit in the Arizona summer. My next priority is installing Tritium Fibre Optic Night Sights and perhaps a light or laser.

  • brad

    Put 100 rounds through my new lc9s today after initial cleaning. No ftf ,no FTE, and ate two different manufactured ammo. Trigger pull is much nicer than the older lc9 design. I like the single side safety as its like a 1911 which I prefer. Accuracy was on par with what I expected for a small framed short barrel. Overall I’m pleased with it and have confidence in this little pocket rocket.

  • POP

    I’ve owned a couple of the original LC9’s, and while I don’t mind the hammer-fired part, it looks like they may have fixed one of the things I don’t like. The original recoil springs set-up (dual) looks like they came out of a ball-point pen, and the guide rod is a piece of plastic about the size of a swizzle-stick. This appears to be a beefier, captured spring set-up. Can’t wait to read the review.

  • Ryan Lannen

    I’m just going to wait for the single stack 9 mm Glock. I can’t stand all of the “safety” features on these.

  • Gene

    If they’d had come out with this version to start with it may be my BUG for the SR40. I had the chance to fire a friends LC9 and the trigger was horrible….as much as I like my SR40 I am glad that I ended up with the S&W Shield which has a better trigger, trigger reset, and sights.

  • Mortaner

    Yesterday I upgraded my Ruger LC9 to the Ruger LC9S. Huge improvement on the trigger pull and overall shoot ability. Unfortunately I lost the reliability and the ease of take down of the LC9.

    I now have to carry the included orange plastic magazine slug to field strip. Also, I have to carry a paper clip to remove the take down pin. I could shake the pin out of the LC9 or use the trigger lock key. No more trigger lock key for the LC9S.

    During take down, the slide guide bar drops under the end coil of the slide guide bar spring. I have to manually depress the spring to place it behind the guide bar end cap. This will allow it to reassemble but can still go out of battery if it is not exactly in the center of the spring. The guide bar end cap will hang on the slide when the slide tries to return to ready to fire position after firing or being racked. Very unreliable.

    • glocker62p

      You can use an empty magazine. We have both guns and frankly, if the gun’s working fine why pull the pin? If it’s broken pulling the pin is likely a useless operation … go to your BUG.

      Assembly/disassembly of the LC9s is just like any device. You have to know how to do it but once you do it becomes second nature. Have you ever reassembled a Ruger .22LR semi auto? If not, you should try that.

      • Mortaner

        Just received an updated slide guide rod from Ruger that is now included with the newer units. The end of the rod toward the muzzle is coned shaped so that the larger spring automatically centers at the end of the rod. Now, as much as I loved to carry the LC9, the LC9S is a joy to shoot with the improved trigger pull. Take down and reassembly is very easy with no binding thanks to the improved slide guide rod.

        The LC9 comes with a plastic slide guide rod which I replaced with a well machined stainless steel version.which I felt made it a much more solid action with very little added weight. It was nice to find a metal rod included in the LC9S

        FYI, removing the take down pin is required for cleaning and servicing the LC9 and LC9S. With the LC9, I could lower the pin guard tab, rack the slide back slightly and shake the pin out of the gun. The pin in the LC9S is much tighter requiring something like a paper clip to push it out.

  • glocker62p

    My wife has an LC9; I have an LC9s. Side by side, once trigger free travel is taken up, the two triggers are not that different. Most likely this is because of the buttery smooth trigger on the LC9 and the somewhat long pull (long for a striker fired gun) on the LC9s. But, both triggers are far better than other guns we’ve shot. At first my wife thought she wanted the “s” type trigger; now having actually shot one she’s not so sure.

    The one thing I don’t care for on the “s” is the shape of the frame just beneath the muzzle. My wife’s LC9 came with a perfect fitting CTC LG-412 laser. It will mount with difficulty (around the trigger guard) on the LC9s but it doesn’t make full contact with the frame under the muzzle. Even when tight, you can shift it around which seriously affects the laser’s zero.

    I’d hope to use wife’s laser but it’s not happening. The frames may look the same; they’re not. Other than this minor objection (a laser will be forthcoming) we really like both guns.

  • cdnrod

    Here’s a review of the gun

  • John W. Kerr

    I carry either my Kahr CW45 or my LC9 concealed. I found a lot of “trigger pull” problem begins with how secure your “hold” is! Is that just me? I don’t know, but it seems to make no great difference whether its my 1911 Springfield operator, mdl 29 44mag or P-95 as compared to the carry guns if your “hold” is no good!!!

    • Chris

      True… But with the LC9 you actually have to compensate for the trigger pull tilting the muzzle down as well as the recoil when aiming. I can’t argue with your point, but with a small frame pistol and less than an inch wide grip in your hand that’s a lot of potential to miss your mark.

  • Blue Flame

    Yet another Ruger product designed by lawyers.

    • Michael B

      Yet another comment by another idiot.

  • Michael B

    After swearing I’d never own another Ruger SA & selling off my P85, 95, 97, LCP and LC9 – I fondled one of these LC9s’ that a customer ordered; I emailed one of my distributors and ordered one for myself. If it is as good at the range as it felt in my hand, it’ll be my new dedicated Harley pistol – possibly even my EDC. I really like the improvements and feel in hand of this little 9.

  • Bowii

    I just put 50 rounds through my new 9s and what a difference there is between the hammer and striker.
    I was not going to change to the 9s but God a great offer on my old one.
    I consider my self a good shot, but I was able to put 5 of 7 rounds in a 4 inch circle from 25 yards.
    I feel more secure with this gun. I have been cc for about 9 months and I shoot this gun much better than my shield .40, I think I will probably get rid of the .40
    The only thing I am going to change is the recoil spring. I had a 20lbs on my previous model, I could tell the difference but it was not a deal changer.
    I would say try this gun, it will change your opinion about the model.

  • David Carpenter

    I’m trying to get he n LC9S from Academy. They are out of stock. I like the size. I’m 5’10 and 180lbs With my jacket on in cold weather, my XD9mm conceals just fine but, I’m a bit old school and ex-military and tuck my shirts in so warm weather presents a problem with concealment . So, a slim light weight like this new Ruger sounds like a good idea.

    • Milemt

      Do yourself a favor and try a local gunstore over academy. The price difference will allow you to stock up on mags and ammo.

  • No More a Victim

    I am very very new to CC and guns in general. I’ve shot a ruger 22, and a 9mm Glock (not sure of specific model). After a scare stranded in a broken car with trouble surrounding me and a dead phone and another issue in Walmart over Christmas in the back of the store….I decided to purchase and carry. I am 48, cancer fighter and don’t have a ton of hand strength and a petite body build. I purchased the LC9s yesterday….the smooth trigger pull, additional safety features (remember, I don’t want accidents) and KNOW I need to become fluid with my gun operation so it becomes second nature…were selling points. I opted this over the ruger 380 because they felt very similar in size and weight therefore went bigger. I practice gun and carry safety (my parents also cc). I agree it’s “only” a 9mm…and most can cc larger meaner nastier guns…but consider other people that carry and I know I will need to feel confident to use and I agree, unload and prayer are my best defenses. Just my 2 cents.


    Ok, here’s the stupid question of the day… Will the LC9 Lock Key work on an LC9s? And, if so, in what situation would I ever need to use this function? It was listed in the LC9s Parts, but was labeled as an LC9 Lock Key. Thus, the confusion.

    • Chris

      The LC9s does not have the disconnect option at all. When I traded in my LC9 for an LC9s that was one of the first things I noticed. You won’t need the key anymore. The key disconnected the trigger from the hammer, which the LC9s replaced with a striker.

      • Scroops

        Thanks, Chris! :)

  • Lar Atwork

    The lc9s has too light a trigger to not have a safety

  • Little Moose

    Does anybody know where you can buy magazines for Ruger LC9S Pro ?

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