PREVIEW: RUGER PC9 CARBINE, RUGER'S NEXT BIG THING?
There is built-in appeal in the notion of being able to use the same ammunition in your rifle as in your pistol. The Thompson M1928A1, the “Tommy Gun,” was in service by the U.S. Military from 1938-1971, with over 1.5 million produced during WWII. Using the same 45 ACP rounds as the 1911 pistol that was standard issue from 1911 onward, standardization had its appeal. For today's consumer, a 9mm semi-auto offers lower cost per shot than center-fire rifle cartridges.
The Ruger has a 16.12 inch barrel and that can mean a big performance increase as compared to pistol exterior ballistics. With a 4 inch pistol and Cor-Bon JHP +P 125 grain rounds, you can expect 1226 fps. Out of this Ruger carbine, this same round jumps to about 1430 fps. Contingent of the specific round, you are getting somewhere in the area of a 20% increase in muzzle velocity. The Hornady 115 grain Critical Defense round jumps from 1140 fps to 1378 fps out of the Ruger PC9.
While this doesn't turn the 9mm Luger into a long range varmint rifle or a deer rifle, it is a significant jump for home defense / self defense, and is a very pleasant round to plink with. Several years back, the Marlin Camp 9 was reasonably popular: I used mine on groundhogs. The Camp 9 was discontinued back in 1999. While standard capacity was 12 rounds, I used S&W Model 59 14 round magazines in mine.
When my Dad and I shot at the Illinois State Rifle Association event, to qualify for the M1 Garands offered by the Civilian Marksmanship Program, Dad wanted two Garands. Somehow, he convinced my Mom to go shoot with us in the rain and mud for that purpose, and I let Mom use my Camp 9 as it was so comfortable to shoot. The ill-fated, so called “Assault Weapons Ban” took effect in 1994, expired back in 2004. Apparently, Marlin got cold feet when the ban was enacted and stepped away from the market.
Model Number: 19100
Caliber: 9mm Luger
Stock Black Synthetic
Barrel Length 16.12"
Overall Length 34.37"
Barrel Feature Threaded, Fluted
Front Sight Protected Blade
Rear Sight Adjustable Ghost Ring
Thread Pattern 1/2"-28
Weight 6.8 lb.
Length of Pull 12.62" - 14.12"
Material Aluminum Alloy
Finish Type III Hardcoat Anodized
Twist 1:10" RH
Suggested Retail $649.00
The new Ruger PC9 has a lot going for it, and in brief test-firing I was pleasantly surprised at the excellent trigger. You can use either Ruger or Glock magazines, it has a clever take-down design, and the factory ghost ring sights are quite good. The Ruger PC9 has several ambidextrous features, and the length of pull is adjustable from 12.62 to 14.12 inches. The Ruger PC9 also has an integral Picatinny rail so you can easily add optics if you wish.
Although the Ruger is hardly my vision of breathtaking beauty, the general appeal of this little rifle is hard to ignore. It is easy to manage, fun and easy to shoot, has good standard capacity of 17 rounds, and is the type of rifle that the entire family will enjoy. Whether shooting for fun or as a basic home defense arm, I really do think that Ruger got it right with this model and they will sell huge numbers of them. A full review will follow in the near future.
Copyright 2018 by Randy Wakeman. All Rights Reserved.