Skip to main content

Review: Ruger Security-9

Review: Ruger Security-9

Ruger has an enduring reputation for producing affordable, high-quality, American-­made products. Back in 1972, the robust Security-­Six became Ruger's first double-action (DA) revolver and was successfully marketed to law enforcement with a competitive price point. From its introduction, came the Service-Six and Speed Six models, as well.

Rugged and reliable are accurate descriptors of the Security-­Six as it brought comfort to both cops and citizens alike.

And here we go again.

Meet the Security-9

You'd be hard-pressed to find a police officer with a revolver in their duty holster these days. In fact, the New York Police Department announced that it will finally phase out the last of its revolvers in 2018. Sure, revolvers have their place, but their low ammunition capacity and generally slow reloading procedure just don't stack up well against the benefits of carrying a modern, semiautomatic pistol. As technology advances, so too must defensive arms.


To this end, Ruger has revealed the Security-­9. It's a lightweight and compact 9mm semiautomatic pistol that's fed by a 15-­round alloy magazine. And because there is a hammer system hidden within the slide it is easier to rack than most common pistols, too. The Security-9 is leaving the factory with a suggested retail price of $380, which means that we will likely find it being sold closer to $300. However, cheap doesn't always equate to value, so let's consider its features to determine if it will become the Security-Six of this generation.

Family Tradition

Obviously, the Security-­9 bears little resemblance to the Security-Six. While the Security-­9's name is inspired by the legendary wheelgun, this new handgun actually has more in common with its smaller, slightly older sibling: the LCP II.

Reviewed in Guns & Ammo's January 2017 issue, the LCP II featured a 5 1/2-pound (tested) trigger pull, among other updates, that silenced critics of the original LCP's long and heavy trigger. The LCP II was a dramatic improvement.

The Security-9 is a good value that features a 4-inch barrel and a blued, chrome-moly steel slide. It's also very easy to disassemble.

The Security-­9 and LCP II share similar qualities. The trigger is neither a single action (SA) nor a traditional DA. Rather, the Security-9 is more accurately described as a precocked DA. This makes the trigger pull feel short and reminiscent of an SA pistol. Internally, it's as safe as the trigger of a DA revolver.

The Security-­9 may be the latest in an evolution of Ruger handguns, but I find that its unique characteristics enable it to stand on its own.


You don't have to be an engineer to deduce that the dimensions of the Security-­9 are strikingly similar to that of the Glock 19. The latter is the yardstick to which all other compact polymer pistols are measured. The popularity of the Glock 19 can be credited in large part to its size. It's small enough that it can be concealed, yet large enough to facilitate a full grip while carrying 15-plus-one rounds of 9mm. In the same way, the Security-­9 strikes this ideal balance of concealability and shootability for a lot less money.

The Security-9 can be fitted with an aiming laser or pistol light. The slide also has forward serrations stylized after the LCP II.

The Security-9 features a through-­hardened, chrome-­moly steel slide that's finished matte blue. The frame contains a serialized chassis within a black, textured, glass-fiber-reinforced, polymer grip. The grip frame measures 1.17 inches at its widest point. It is strong and impact resistant.

The black anodized aluminum chassis not only provides rigidity to the frame, it also supports the slide with long guide rails and wrangles the fire-­control assembly.

The Security-9's tactile grip texture appears on all sides. Just like the LCP II, it mimics stippling that isn't too aggressive. It does offer enough purchase for aiding control of this pistol. Wide, forward and rear cocking surfaces provide bite for manipulating the slide at either point, and they, too, are identical to those found on the LCP II.

The drift-adjustable polymer sights on the Security-9 differ from the LCP II's fixed ones. The Security-9 features a ramped U-outline rear notch and a white-­dot front. These sights closely resemble Glock's plastic dot sights. Shortly, Ruger will be offering its own set of high visability color sights to be sold separately. The aftermarket will certainly follow.

More Safety The Security-­9 has an external manual safety on its left side. When in the down

Cocking serrations met expectations, but the external safety lever is so small to engage that it required intentional effort to operate.

position - as on an M1911 - a red indicator marked "F" appears through a notch beneath the slide. Unlike a M1911's thumb safety, the Security-9's lever pivots at the front, which changes how it feels to operate. I'm not a proponent of an external safety on a carry gun with the clear exception being a 1911-type. By contrast, the Security-­9's external safety is miniscule though it does have a serrated ledge.

There is also a trigger safety lever within the trigger shoe that prevents unintended trigger travel unless it is disengaged. Thanks to the trigger safety and the significant engagement between the hammer and sear, it is my opinion that the Security-9 can be carried safely without the manual thumb safety engaged.

Other Considerations The Security-9 has a modest, 4-inch barrel that's appears virtually identical to the barrel from Ruger's SR9. With the slide locked back, the muzzle shares the same cone-shaped profile of the smaller LCP II. However, I was told by Ruger that this is a

The drift-adjustable U-shaped rear and white-dot front sights sit within large dovetails.

lighter weight, more economical version of the Ruger American Pistol's barrel (which shoots great). They both share six grooves and a 1:10-inch, right-­hand twist.

Disassembly of the Security-9 was simple and didn't require a press of the trigger - an issue with disassembling Glocks.

Given the power of Ruger's brand in the firearms industry, we know that there will be no shortage of accessories for the Security-9. In speaking with Ruger's product manager, Brandon Trevino, this pistol will launch with somewhere near 30 holster options to include manufacturers such as CrossBreed and Blade-­Tech.

Range Time at Gunsite My first opportunity to put the new Security-­9 to work was at a media event held on the hallowed grounds of the Gunsite Academy. This is convenient for Ruger since Gunsite is located just minutes from where the Security-­9 is being made in Prescott, Arizona.

Starting at the 3-yard line to warm-­up, it didn't take long to get a feel for the trigger. It doesn't disappoint. I wasn't expecting such a short, crisp trigger press on a pistol with an expected street price just north of $300. The trigger reset was longer than I prefer, but it was predictable and easily discernable. As a result, my first three shots punched a single hole.The Security-9 I evaluated performed quite well. I experienced only one malfunction: a failure to extract (FTE).

Due to its precocked, double-action operation, the slide is easy to pull to the rear. Controls are right-hand oriented.

The pistol's ergonomics felt on point with rounded edges for comfort and to minimize snagging when drawing from concealment. Unlike Ruger's American Pistol and the SR9, the slide on the Security-­9 isn't oversized for the frame either, and the lip at the front of the magazine's basepad encourages a high grip allowed by the triggerguard's undercut. It would aid control to add texturing for the support hand's thumb on the frame and under the triggerguard.

We shot various drills from 3 to 15 yards including drawing and firing from the holster; shooting the Failure Drill, which required two rounds to the chest followed by a round to the target's head box; firing controlled pairs (where shooters aim, fire a shot, and when the front sight settles after recoil, the shooter fires a second shot; and hammered pairs. Hammered pairs are where the shooter fires two rounds in rapid succession without obtaining a second sight picture. During these drills, my only complaint was with the difficulty in operating the external manual safety lever. which required me to break my shooting grip to activate.


Convinced the Security-­9 passed muster from close-range shooting distances, I benched it at the 25-­yard line to measure its accuracy potential. Bracing against a sandbag, I fired five, five-­shot groups. Aside from an initial grouping of 2.78 inches with Hornady's American Gunner 115-grain XTP load, the results that followed were perplexing. The groupings were predictably unpredictable with no pattern around the 4-­inch bullseye target. Ruger anticipates production pistols to print 4-inch groups at 15 yards. My overall average based on all five loads tested was 5.4 inches at G&A's standard distance for pistol testing at 25 yards. Other Gunsite attendees fired additional five-­shot groups from the same bench at 25 yards and experienced similar results.


With that said, the Security-9 was not designed to be a target pistol, so accuracy on paper is relative. The Security-9 was designed as an economical handgun for personal defense - which it is. In this role and at this price point, I'd give it another hard look when pistols start appearing at dealers.

For more information, visit

Current Magazine Cover

Enjoy articles like this?

Subscribe to the magazine.

Get access to everything Guns & Ammo has to offer.
Subscribe to the Magazine

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Shooting 600 Yards with .300 Blackout

Shooting 600 Yards with .300 Blackout

The .300 Blackout cartridge was developed to provide greater effectiveness than a 9mm at short and medium ranges when fired from a short-barreled suppressed firearm. Just because the cartridge wasn't designed to go long doesn't mean Rifles & Optics Editor Tom Beckstrand won't take it there, using a large-format pistol, no less. Armed with SIG Sauer's 9-inch-barreled MCX Virtus Pistol loaded with Black Hills' 125-grain TMK ammunition, Beckstrand attempts to ring steel at 600 yards with help from Hornady's 4DOF ballistic calculator in this segment of “Long Range Tech.”

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Small, lightweight and purpose-built for sub-compact carry guns, Surefire's XSC pistol light takes on EDC illumination segment.

Pocket-Pistol Carry Tips and Tricks

Pocket-Pistol Carry Tips and Tricks

Pocket carry, as a method of concealed carry for a defensive firearm, can be a practical option when done right. This is especially true during the colder months when heavy outer garments can obstruct access to a traditional waistline holster. Former U.S. Navy SEAL Jeff Gonzales, president of Trident Concepts, joins G&A contributor Kimberly Heath-Chudwin to discuss guns, training and gear, including Blackhawk's TecGrip holster that can make pocket carry more successful.

First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle

First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle

At the heart of the rifle is the Model 2020 action which wish designed and built with very tight tolerances thanks to Springfield's technology-driven manufacturing capabilities The stainless steel action features an integral recoil lug, and pairs with a fluted bolt employing dual cocking cams and an enhanced extractor for high pressure loads. The blueprinted and precisely machined action allows Springfield to offer the Model 2020 with .75" MOA accuracy guarantee. Despite being a production rifle, the Model 2020 should rival more expensive custom builds.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Small, lightweight and purpose-built for sub-compact carry guns, Surefire's XSC pistol light takes on EDC illumination segment.Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look Tactical

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Jeremy Stafford - September 10, 2020

Small, lightweight and purpose-built for sub-compact carry guns, Surefire's XSC pistol light...

Where has all of the ammo gone?2020 Ammo Shortage Industry

2020 Ammo Shortage

Keith Wood - December 23, 2020

Where has all of the ammo gone?

In this segment of “At The Range,” Handgunning Editor Jeremy Stafford and contributor Patrick Sweeney compare the visibility of red and green lasers in outdoor, sunny conditions. Red vs. Green Lasers: Visibility in Bright Light Accessories

Red vs. Green Lasers: Visibility in Bright Light

Guns & Ammo Staff - August 24, 2020

In this segment of “At The Range,” Handgunning Editor Jeremy Stafford and contributor Patrick...

See More Trending Articles

More Handguns

Nighthawk Custom and Korth have introduced two new offerings, the Korth NXS and NXA 8-shot .357 Magnum revolvers.Nighthawk Custom Korth NXS and NXA – First Look Handguns

Nighthawk Custom Korth NXS and NXA – First Look

Guns & Ammo Staff - July 23, 2020

Nighthawk Custom and Korth have introduced two new offerings, the Korth NXS and NXA 8-shot...

The surplus gun scene is constantly changing. I procrastinated and missed the opportunity to purchase a police trade-in P226 and P229 in .40 S&W for $379.95 because I thought they might come available in 9mm. Friends, the lesson I learned is that if you think you might want it, don't wait too long. Surplus Guns Handguns

Surplus Guns

Keith Wood - September 17, 2020

The surplus gun scene is constantly changing. I procrastinated and missed the opportunity to...

The Nighthawk Custom Agent 2 Commander is an abbreviated version of the Agent 2, built on a forged slide and frame. The crowned muzzle is cut flush with the bushing, which was given flats around the edges. Few curves were left untouched by flats; even the bottom of the triggerguard has corners leading to the high-grip undercut. The scale motif adds striking functionality. Nighthawk Custom Agent 2 Commander Review Reviews

Nighthawk Custom Agent 2 Commander Review

Eric R. Poole - July 28, 2020

The Nighthawk Custom Agent 2 Commander is an abbreviated version of the Agent 2, built on a...

Ed Brown fully customizes the Smith & Wesson M&P series.Ed Brown Fueled Series M&P Pistols Review Reviews

Ed Brown Fueled Series M&P Pistols Review

G&A Staff - December 02, 2020

Ed Brown fully customizes the Smith & Wesson M&P series.

See More Handguns

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Guns & Ammo App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now