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Hello all

I own two GP 100's, both 4inch stainless, manufacture dates are 1992 and 1994 respectively.
I was thinking of getting a new one as a gift for my eldest son and was wondering if there are any differences in the new ones such as build quality or improvements like SW revolvers?


Thanks in advance!
 

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My newer ones (176-177 prefix) seem to have better actions, I have 4 that I bought brand new in the past 3 years, and out of those 4, I left the stock springs in 3 because they were perfect out of the box.

The older ones I have, (80's, 90's) seem like they needed a little bit of work to get "perfect".
 

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I have not found much difference in build quality between the older and newer GP100's, other than the trigger in the newer ones seemed to be perfect in the new ones, IMHO.

The only bad thing on the new ones, again IMO, is that Hogue monogrip on the new ones. That thing felt like I was squeezing a dried porcupine turd, with those little spikes and the general feel. I replaced mine with Altamont grips, and never looked back.
 

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Older or newer doesn't matter much to me. The GP100 is a tough robust revolver. My 1993 model has had thousands of rounds and still functions like the day it was born. The only real differences are that the newer ones have laser etched engravings (GP100, Ruger logo) where as the old were stamped into the metal. Newer ones have MIM triggers and hammers. But they are both excellent revolvers and will outlast any shooter.

If you find a good used one go ahead and save yourself a few hundred dollars and invest that extra savings toward a good set of grips.
 

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The older 4" models had barrels that were a true 4" in length. Newer ones, the barrels are 4.2". This was done to meet Canadian legal requirements that handguns have barrels over 4" Its not really much of a change, but if you compare old vs new, you will notice the difference.

The build quality on the newer GP100s is just as good as an example built 20 years ago. Its nice to see a product that hasn't lost its solid reputation. Its also interesting that complaints have been rising on some of the other Ruger products, because of rushed production during the panic buying spree, but that hasn't seemed to affect the GP100. I wonder if Ruger kept its most experienced assemblers on the flag ship revolver... ?

Buy new with confidence
 

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4.2-inch barrel.
MIM trigger & a couple small parts.
Re-designed firing pin bushing/retention (old was press fit from the front & had a crosspin, new is a screw-in from the rear & pinless).
Extractor star now machined to self-align without locator pins.
Barrel markings different.

Overall quality (on a good one) still the same.

Denis
 

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Ruger decided to stay with cast GP hammers because they thought the configuration needed for MIM in the GP would be....cosmetically challenged. :)
Denis
 

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Ruger decided to stay with cast GP hammers because they thought the configuration needed for MIM in the GP would be....cosmetically challenged. :)
Denis
So you mean the shape of the GP100 hammer as we know it would have to be changed in order to MIM it? Interesting. I have no issues with MIM parts whatsoever but I am annoyed by the molding line up the back of the SP101 hammer. It's hard to remove, harder than you would think. The line is actually slightly lower than the rest so you have to work the entire back surface down to make it go away. Some are worse than others and it doesn't affect performance one bit I know. Just a little pet peeve.... I like the looks of the MIM trigger.
 

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You see the form the MIM SP hammer has?
The reinforcing "cutouts" & angles?

The MIM hammer for a GP would have to be altered in form similarly, you'd lose the flats.
Denis
 

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They also dropped the "S" off the "R".

I prefer the laser etching on the new models. Much nicer than S&W's version.

The safety warning on the barrel is smaller.
 

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Or just eliminate it entirely. Hell, it's a gun, it's supposed to be dangerous.
 

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Looking at all the changes the S&W revolvers have gone through since 1986, the GP100 has remained relatively unchanged except for a few minor alterations.

If someone would make a spanner wrench sized just for the screw-in firing pin bushing, and an extended firing pin, it would make action jobs a LOT easier.

Several companies have been making extended drop in pins for S&W's for years, and even for the older "pin in hammer" design, there have been gunsmiths fitting pin extensions.

Ruger finally went to an easier to replace firing pin, but no extended pin is available. I emailed Bowen and he said he hopes to release a pin to fit the new design soon, in addition to the "old style" pinned bushing pin he had been making.
 

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All I know is the trigger on my 20 year old GP100 feels heavier than the trigger on my WCGP100. One isn't any smoother than the other, one just feels heavier.
 

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I can't comment on the newer ones, but my 1990-ish GP100 is a fine gun. The only complaint I have is the stamped marking wasn't uniform (heavier on one side, no effect on performance.) The trigger in single action is glass rod crisp. I actually chose it over a S&W because it felt better in my hand. Love the old style Lett grips.
 

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My 2011 5in bbl model has a cast trigger and had the best action out of the box of any GP100 revolver I ever owned, and I've owned a few. My 2014 3in bbl model in .38 spl has a MIM trigger and wasn't nearly as nice out of the box, but it has worked in very nicely. I don't think the MIM versus non-MIM trigger had anything to do with it, but rather the unique fitting of two different revolvers. I personally prefer the finish of the non-MIM trigger, but other than cosmetics I don't think it makes a nickels worth of difference. JMHO.:)
 
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