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I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY want to love my SP101

This is a discussion on I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY want to love my SP101 within the Ruger Double Action forums, part of the Pistol & Revolver Forum category; love my SP. its such a tank. it shoots .357 mag loads very accurately, not so much .38spl. its a blast to shoot and will ...


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Old January 31st, 2020, 10:48 PM   #16
 
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love my SP. its such a tank. it shoots .357 mag loads very accurately, not so much .38spl. its a blast to shoot and will always be one of my favorite revolvers. I never changed anything to it, it doesn't need anything to be changed or improved.



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Old February 1st, 2020, 01:34 AM   #17
 
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Try shooting it single action. You said it’s spurless, start pulling the trigger and pull the hammer back with your finger the rest of the way.

How is the cylinder lock up, does it rotate much with the trigger pulled all the way? Also check the cylinder to barrel alignment with the trigger pulled.



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Old February 1st, 2020, 04:07 AM   #18
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wheelguns View Post
Do you think it has anything to do with the fixed rear sight? Are you using the center of the pad of your trigger finger? Are you always shooting low left, low right, shotgun pattern? Are you left handed or right handed? Have you tried fatter cast bullets?
Ok,you see where this is going. Your fixed sight sp101 may not be shooting your ammo to point of aim. Does your lcr have an adjustable sight? Usually with a fixed sight gun, you are better off finding a load that shoots to your point of aim, and stick with that load. A little more information will help alot.
I've had several people come to me, over the years, and they are having trouble between different handguns (both pistols and revolvers) and I've told them to do the same thing I do when I get a new handgun...
Buy several different bullets (different manufacturers, grains, JHP's, FMJ's, etc.) and shoot them to see which shoots best in the new handgun...and then stay with that load for that handgun.

For example...my 2.25" SP101 shoots 110 and 125 grain .357's very accurately, but not so much with 158 grain...whereas my 3" SP101 shoots the heavier grain bullets more accurately than the 2.25" shoots the lighter bullets. And my Ruger Commander shoots Hornady's 200 grain JHP XTP's just dead-on accurate...they're rare to find on a shelf, but I have managed to accumulate a few boxes of that particular ammo for it!

It can be a little bit expensive, but it's worth it to figure out which ammo shoots best in which handgun!
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Old February 1st, 2020, 06:25 AM   #19
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You have to ask yourself what you bought this gun for.

You purchased a relatively heavy, snubby revolver with the hammer lopped off so that it can only be fired double action. And you purchased it in a cartridge caliber better suited to long barrels — a cartridge that has so much powder that the short barrel can’t even get the full benefit out of it, leaving you dealing with a lot of flash and blast.

As an outside observer, I personally have no idea what such a gun is good for. For me, it would be too heavy for shorts pocket carry in the summer. It would be too bulky for jeans pocket carry in the winter. The lack of single action capability and shorter barrel wouldn’t make it a perfect “kit gun” for carrying hiking or fishing; for that I’d choose a standard hammer 3” or 4” barrel.

About the only things I see this gun being great at is as a bedside table gun, or to carry under a jacket in the winter if you live in a northern climate and subscribe to the theory that hypothetical assailants will be wearing heavier clothes.

For those limited purposes that this gun is designed for. how much accuracy do you feel you need, and how far out of line is the gun, really?
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Old February 1st, 2020, 07:59 AM   #20
 
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The op said he is shooting shotgun patterns... I dont gamble .. but I would lay coin down that it is not ammo or gun related. Its the shooter.

I wont get into whether the gun serves a purpose or not .. they make lots of different guns so we have choices.

So here is some advice. I am going to bet flinching. yea flinching can lead to a "group" that might indicate flinching but not everyone flinches the same.

First .. I mentioned Dry fire. Dry fire is king.

Get your strong hand as high up on the grip as you can. I mean right under the hammer. Curl your thumb down and make a fist.
Your middle finger should be as far up behind the trigger as you can get.
Make sure the part of your wrist that is facing the ceiling is tight. Consciously engage the muscles there.

Take you support hand and first place your fingers of your support hand and put them over the fingers of you strong hand and then pull back until your hand is along the gun. Imagine that you are clam shelling. So the front is locked and you then close down on the rear.

Miculek positions his support hand thumb kind of over his strong hand thumbnail. I have never been good with that grip so my support hand thumb pushes down tight just on top of the thumb knuckle of my strong hand. It sits on top but forward.

Now take any stance that suits you and lean into the gun. Right now that gun should feel like superman couldnt take it out of your hands. You should now have completely enveloped the grip.

Now .. grip it while you look down the sights. When you get to where its shaking back off. Try and remember that spot.

Now .. YMMV but ..I find that curling the trigger finger back in a smooth motion straight through and allowing my finger to slide across the trigger face as i do so will give me the smoothest trigger pull.

So first a grip that feels like almost the entire gun is covered with meat
Second how tight we grip
Third how smooth we pull the trigger
Now commit it to muscle memory (Dry fire)

Point it at a clock or whatever .. watch that front sight. At this point it will usually only move if you are doing something wonky with the trigger pull. Try it again .. keep going until that sight doesnt budge. Now go to the range and use just some 38's.

I have a gutter sight Gp I can make a 1.5 inch hole with at 9 yds unsupported in DA only.

You could of course .. just sell it but .. here is the truth .. You will likely go your whole life without have to use your gun in self defense. So why not just enjoy shooting. Part of the enjoyment of it and other athletic endeavors I have pursued is getting through some of the walls that crop up. Breaking through one challenge in order to find another.

I shoot probably twice a month and have been for many years .. if I wasnt always trying to do something I am not great at I would quickly get bored.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 09:01 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by aboriqua View Post

... whether the gun serves a purpose or not .. they make lots of different guns so we have choices.
Oh, I agree with you that it's his life and his choices. And you have written a lot of great tips about helping him shoot better.

All I'm saying is, maybe his expectations for a bobbed hammer snubby are more than they should be. I don't know what "shotgun patterns" mean to him. I'd like to see pictures of a target, both shot by him, and shot by someone else using the same gun.

Also I think he should keep in mind that gun "fit" is a real thing. With revolvers it may not be as nuanced as a sporting shotgun where people spend hundreds or thousands of dollars getting the right gun to fit their face and torso perfectly. But it could just be that his hand and that gun/grip combo are not and never will be a good combination.

I've had handguns that didn't "work" for me. Some I have learned how to make work after much practice as you describe. But my go-to gun is a single stack 9mm Walther PPS. My hand fits it perfectly. I could grab it quickly and I would naturally get a high grip every time. My trigger finger reach is perfect for great finger placement that allows me to fire without pulling the sights off target. I can pick it up and put nine shots on a small target very quickly every time.

Owning a handgun that doesn't fit him may be like being married to an abusive alcoholic. You can spend a lot of time "trying to make it work" but you may never be successful. And you may be wasting time and missing out on something that is naturally a perfect fit.

Last edited by FeralCatKillr; February 1st, 2020 at 09:04 AM.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 09:25 AM   #22
 
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I have a 3" 357 SP and love it single or double action and nothing done to it. I'm more accurate (7 and 15 yards) with it than all my hand guns except my Super Blackhawk.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 12:20 PM   #23
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FeralCatKillr View Post

Also I think he should keep in mind that gun "fit" is a real thing......

And you may be wasting time and missing out on something that is naturally a perfect fit.
Absolutely .. I am very very finicky about marriage of gun and hand and will sell off a gun that I dont bond with. I just recently sold off a 10mm XDM that was a GREAT gun. It was just to damn big around for my short fingers and I didnt shot it to my potential.

Having said that .. I made sure it was the gun and not me first. or .. gun and me ... and not my inability to shot it well. I worked at shooting it well and I am a fair and experienced shooter. It didnt happen

All I am suggesting is .. if the OP likes the gun .. maybe its worth the effort to get some good information and really try and acclimate to it before giving up.

I may be a bit biased since I have a love of revolvers but except for having to get used to the longer heavier trigger if you are accustomed to semi auto .. the grip and trigger reach are pretty neutral and do lend themselves to being shot well.

Oh and as an aside .. I never got the SP101 either. Some guys love them and more power to them. I dont find them significantly lighter and opted for a 3"gp100 with the extra round. To each their own. I do have a bitty revolver that I carry regularly but its a S&W 642 and it doesn't weigh much more than my Sebenza. If I am going wee bitty then I want to go wee bitty or I will just chose a full size gun but .. again .. Different strokes for different folks and I am cool with that.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 02:57 PM   #24
 
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have 2 sp101s. love them both.... but I adapt to the weapon....
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Old February 1st, 2020, 03:03 PM   #25
 
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3 inch barrel to 3 inch barrel the SP101 is two thirds of a pound lighter than a GP, that's substantial. It's more compact size allow for easier pocket/conceal carry. And yes its heavier than other snubbies but that affords quicker shots and absorbs recoil of the 357 round better. And you dont have to be shy about running full house 357s.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 03:13 PM   #26
 
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Lots of great advice, thankful

Well, I'm going to try to take a lot of this input and put it to the test.

I'm not giving up! and I will see how I can improve. I DO think I have very high expectations! I think I've left everyone with the impression that I can't hit the broadside of a barn with my SP101! Actually, usually the range master comes over and says something like "wow, you really shoot that snubby well!".

Some of my frustration is just that I shoot the cheaper, lighter LCR better! And it frustrates me that I have loved on my SP101 so much and it just isn't right that I shoot the LCR better, darn it!

Which also makes me say that it is valid to think what place does the SP101 have for me. For CCW I shoot the LCR great! and it's lighter with the same capacity, same ammo. So as long as I shoot the LCR better and it's easier to carry I'd be dumb to carry the SP101 instead. Unless of course my backup it to throw it at someone after I run out of ammo, then the SP is superior.

But a couple of guys here have led me to believe that the GP100 isn't the same, bigger gun, better grip...

A lot has been suggested about the grips. How do I say this, I have big hands and it does seem like I have to pull the trigger WAY back, close to my palm. If I could get the back of my hand further from the trigger then that might be the biggest difference.

So, I'm going to work on my grip. Look into different grips on the gun. I'm going to continue to practice. I'm going to dream of getting two guns. The 327 LCR as I think that maybe my perfect CCW. And dream of getting a GP100 357 seven shot as my potentially favorite home defense/range toy.

I plan on reading and re-reading the very good responses to this post. I love revolvers (BTW, don't want to open a can of worms but I have a Shield and M&P Compact that I shoot amazingly well. BUT I REALLY don't want to like Semi-Autos! HaHA)

Gosh darn it, I'm going to get great at my revolvers and I'm going to enjoy the journey!
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Old February 1st, 2020, 03:39 PM   #27
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volofish View Post
Well, I'm going to try to take a lot of this input and put it to the test.

I'm not giving up! and I will see how I can improve. I DO think I have very high expectations! I think I've left everyone with the impression that I can't hit the broadside of a barn with my SP101! Actually, usually the range master comes over and says something like "wow, you really shoot that snubby well!".

Some of my frustration is just that I shoot the cheaper, lighter LCR better! And it frustrates me that I have loved on my SP101 so much and it just isn't right that I shoot the LCR better, darn it!

Which also makes me say that it is valid to think what place does the SP101 have for me. For CCW I shoot the LCR great! and it's lighter with the same capacity, same ammo. So as long as I shoot the LCR better and it's easier to carry I'd be dumb to carry the SP101 instead. Unless of course my backup it to throw it at someone after I run out of ammo, then the SP is superior.

But a couple of guys here have led me to believe that the GP100 isn't the same, bigger gun, better grip...

A lot has been suggested about the grips. How do I say this, I have big hands and it does seem like I have to pull the trigger WAY back, close to my palm. If I could get the back of my hand further from the trigger then that might be the biggest difference.

So, I'm going to work on my grip. Look into different grips on the gun. I'm going to continue to practice. I'm going to dream of getting two guns. The 327 LCR as I think that maybe my perfect CCW. And dream of getting a GP100 357 seven shot as my potentially favorite home defense/range toy.

I plan on reading and re-reading the very good responses to this post. I love revolvers (BTW, don't want to open a can of worms but I have a Shield and M&P Compact that I shoot amazingly well. BUT I REALLY don't want to like Semi-Autos! HaHA)

Gosh darn it, I'm going to get great at my revolvers and I'm going to enjoy the journey!
Good on you brother! And .. If in the end it doesn't satisfy a need.. they do seem to hold their value very well. Look forward to your upcoming range reports!
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Old February 1st, 2020, 03:49 PM   #28
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I was just going to suggest trying different grips. Lots of nice ones out there on eBay by the way. Different grips will completely transform a revolver.

If you love it, keep it and experiment around.

There are good aspects to a chunky little double-action SP. Someday when you're an old man, too arthritic to rack the slide on a pistol, that SP with some mild .38s will be a great "bedside table" gun.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 05:05 PM   #29
 
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Here's an interesting story on grips. I didn't care for the original grips that came with my SP101 so I purchased a set of Hogue Monogrips .. I liked the Monogrips but found they were a little skinny and way to big (long) to conceal. So I bought a set of Pachmayr Diamond Pro's and found the perfect fit (for me anyway). I could shoot more accurately with them than any of the other grips I tried on it. With that in mind I decided I'd get a set of Diamond Pro's for my LCR. Put them on the LCR and could't hit with the same accuracy as the Hogue Tamers that came on it. Different frames give different results with the same model grips.

The moral for me is that each different model gun has a specific grip that'll help marry it to your hand. You just have to keep trying them on until you find it.
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Old February 1st, 2020, 07:19 PM   #30
 
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I've owned 2 SP-101s and ended up trading them off on other pistols that I've enjoyed much more.

My 1st was a Talo edition with all of the fancy machine engraving. The trigger on it was as rough as a cob. I too polished all of the internals to a mirror finish. Then a very expensive custom wood grip set up.
It was beautiful. The trigger was as good as it was ever going to be. I ended up trading it for a S&W model 65 with a 3" barrel. The only regret was that I didn't buy a Smith revolver to begin with.

My second 101 was a first generation 3" barrel in .327 Federal Magnum. This revolver locked up when shooting 100gr. Magnum rounds. The spent shells also had to be pried from the cylinder. Research told me that many of the 1st generation .327s had to have the cylinder replaced. I sent it back to Ruger and after about a week or so later they sent it back with notation that they had replaced "all internals and cylinder".

The new internals were very rough. I pulled this one down and polished everything. I also buffed the entire pistol to a mirror shine. During this buffing process I learned just how rough and crude these pistols are finished. You can hide a lot of flaws with a brushed or frosted stainless finish. It took hours of work with sanding blocks and 300 grit sandpaper to get the sides of the frame flat and free of machine and tool marks and swirls.

The trigger return spring channel was full of milling chips. So rough that it took 3hrs of work just to get the 1/4 " drill bit in there to chase out the trash.

All of this is a labor of love that I enjoyed doing.

Another set of beautiful wood grips on this one too.

When I got finished, I thought that it would be a beautiful revolver that I would really enjoy shooting and carrying.

Nope.

My problem is that I have been spoiled by years of owning and enjoying S&W revolvers.

After all of the time, money, and elbow grease, neither of my SP101s could come close to the fit and finish of an out of the box S&W.

My Smiths are like Porsches and my SP101s were like Russian dump trucks.

I'm slow on the uptake and what I do manage to learn, it's usually the hard way.
First one was shame on them. The second one was shame on me.

Last edited by Ingramite; February 1st, 2020 at 07:28 PM.
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