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Over on the other Ruger Forum there is a long running thread demanding Ruger provide a 41 mag in the mid frame flat top single action. It has gone on about 4 years and is supported and bumped on a regular basis by about 4 diehards . Apparently knowing more than the engineers at Ruger they often point out how easy it would be and how foolish Ruger is for not doing it.
Ruger generally knows what they are doing and what their market is. If they miss a marketable possibility that will surely be caught by Lipsey's . Happens all the time . Cool guns get built if they can be built .
But we wants what we wants . Just afraid your in for a disappointing wait .
That is one heck of a comparison......

Ruger has not offered a midsize .41 flattop, because the .41 Magnum is not a popular cartridge. Honestly, it is amazing that the .41 Redhawk has been brought back in limited numbers. To say that there would be a difference in sales between a six shot .38/.357 SP101 and a .41 Mag single action would be one heck of an understatement. There are a lot more that "four die hards" that would be very happy to see this.

Lipseys cannot order a six shot .38/.357 SP101, because it will require a frame revision. To be prefectly frank, I question Lipseys' ability to read the market. For example, offering new half lug SP/GP models in blue, but not stainless, left money on the table.

Complacency is the only reason that Ruger has not done this. If Ruger can spend money to revise the GP frame and reintroduce mid size Ruger single actions, they can certainly do this. As I have said in this thread and others, a D frame size revolver should always have D frame capacity. As Rover pointed out, Ruger has a big gap to fill in their double action lineup. The six shot .38/.357 SP101 would move a lot of units and prevent Ruger from losing sales to Charter, Taurus, Kimber, and Colt. There are no longer any excuses to not do this on Ruger's part.
 

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"Right now they cannot keep up with demand for stuff they make now.
Right now they are trying to get Marlin leverguns to the market .
And we all know they have a much larger market in semi-autos than they do in revolvers."

Yes, all firearms companies have their hands full right now. However, that should not cause positive innovation to come to a grinding hault. Ruger is a big enough company to handle the lever gun market and finally offer a competitor to Charter, Taurus, Kimber, and Colt. Yes, the polymer framed bottom feeder is a sales leader, but revolvers have made a huge comeback. This is why Taurus continues to expand the 856 lineup, Colt brought out the Cobra and King Cobra, and Kimber introduced the K6S. With the D frame size comeback, Ruger needs to finally address the major fault of the SP101. As it stands, it is simply not a size efficient revolver.
 

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Just a few comments .... Ruger doesn't have a K-frame, S&W does. Ruger doesn't have a D-Frame, Colt does. In double action revolvers, Ruger has a SP101 frame, a GP100 frame, a Redhawk frame, and a Super Redhawk frame. The SP101 has been an excellent platform for concealed carry where statistically less than 3 shots total are fired by both parties. That means in a very high percent of self defense scenarios, a 5 shot SP101 fits the bill with ammo to spare.

Just because S&W or some other company makes a gun with a different sized frame or capacity, it doesn't mean Ruger has to do the same thing. People tend to buy Rugers because they are built like a tank and because of their manageable recoil, even with 357 Mag loads.
 

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Just a few comments .... Ruger doesn't have a K-frame, S&W does. Ruger doesn't have a D-Frame, Colt does. In double action revolvers, Ruger has a SP101 frame, a GP100 frame, a Redhawk frame, and a Super Redhawk frame. The SP101 has been an excellent platform for concealed carry where statistically less than 3 shots total are fired by both parties. That means in a very high percent of self defense scenarios, a 5 shot SP101 fits the bill with ammo to spare.

Just because S&W or some other company makes a gun with a different sized frame or capacity, it doesn't mean Ruger has to do the same thing. People tend to buy Rugers because they are built like a tank and because of their manageable recoil, even with 357 Mag loads.
I agree with you on the K frame comparison. The K frame is a medium size revolver and the SP101 is a small frame revolver.

The SP101 is indeed in the D frame size class (like how the LCR is in the J frame size class). The SP101 uses D frame holsters, weighs the same, and has nearly identical dimensions to the other models mentioned. The terms "J frame sized, D frame sized", etc.. are used to compare and classify small frame revolvers. The only difference is that Ruger made a mistake of going with a 1.35" diameter five shot cylinder instead of a 1.40" diameter six shot cylinder. The SP101 will continue to be compared with other D frame sized revolvers. With D frame sized options from other companies increasing, this puts Ruger at a disadvantage. Going from five shots to six makes all the sense in the world when the SP101 is already in this frame class and there are more competitors now. Going from five rounds to six also gives the user a 20% capacity increase in a reliable Ruger revolver. That offers a greater peace of mind and makes the SP101 far more size efficient. This would also not impact holster fitment and there are already plenty of SP101 grips on the market. The SP101 is a good seller, however a second frame revision would allow them to capture a greater percentage of the carry revolver market.
 

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JWintergreen, Ruger obviously has a reason why they market the SP101 with a 5 shot cylinder ..... it sells!
 

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OP disable viewing his account so you can't block him. Just tired of insecure S&W fanbois stirring up crap to cover for their low quality utility, weak and shot loose revolvers. OP, do us a favor, go pedal your misinformation on thehighroad.
 

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OP disable viewing his account so you can't block him. Just tired of insecure S&W fanbois stirring up crap to cover for their low quality utility, weak and shot loose revolvers. OP, do us a favor, go pedal your misinformation on thehighroad.
What?

The Op hasn't even posted in a while. Also, why would you want to block someone? That only creates an echo chamber. I don't think anyone here is saying S&W revolvers are better. The conversation has been about a positive change in the Ruger line.

S&W doesnt even offer a D frame sized revolver. The Model 73/C frame was sadly abandoned in 1973 after some early production problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
OP disable viewing his account so you can't block him. Just tired of insecure S&W fanbois stirring up crap to cover for their low quality utility, weak and shot loose revolvers. OP, do us a favor, go pedal your misinformation on thehighroad.
?
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
I never denied that.

However, a six shot .38/.357, with the aforementioned frame revisions, would capture an even larger share of that market. There is a reason why other companies are doing this.
Well, like I stated in my second post, my thought was a six-shot .38 Special only, based on the SP101 frame. For a six-shot .357 Magnum, the GP100 already has that covered. Ruger also offered the Redhawk in a six-shot .357 Magnum. For anyone who's ever shot a 4-6" .38 Special K-frame revolver, you know that they (for many shooters) have a very nice balance and weight. I think that a Ruger gun like that could sell quite well.
 

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Well, like I stated in my second post, my thought was a six-shot .38 Special only, based on the SP101 frame. For a six-shot .357 Magnum, the GP100 already has that covered. Ruger also offered the Redhawk in a six-shot .357 Magnum. For anyone who's ever shot a 4-6" .38 Special K-frame revolver, you know that they (for many shooters) have a very nice balance and weight. I think that a Ruger gun like that could sell quite well.
I prefer 38 Special only small frame revolvers, and a .38 only version would be my preference. The .38 only SP101 (model no. 5737) is my favourite current SP101 offering. However, guns like the Magnum Carry, K6S, and Colt King Cobra have proven that six shot, D frame sized .357 revolvers can be done very well. Even lowly Charter Arms has released a 25 ounce 6 shot "Professional Model." The GP100 is a chunky medium frame revolver and fits into a different category. It is available with a seven shot cylinder and it is heavy enough to be comfortable to shoot with magnum loads. Due to these factors, a six shot .38/.357 SP101 lineup would not step on its toes. The GP100 series really doesn't compete with the D frame sized guns, due to its heft.

I also really like the mid sized .38 K frames. The lighter barrelled Six Series guns are more in that size range. As much as I love the Six Series revolvers, I think that a six shot .38/357 SP101 would be a better fit for the current market. There are more accessories available, it would be even lighter, fit small hands perfectly, appeal nicely to the carry revolver crowd, and it would allow the SP101 to have zero disadvantages to other revolvers in its class. I think that a four inch, six shot, half lug, tapered barrel .38 Special only would be a perfect .38 Special SP101. It might be a small frame, but it would feel great in the hand. However, most folks would like to see .357 versions (the great versatility argument), and Ruger would be wise to offer a competitor to the K6S and Colt King Cobra.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
...Recently they did cast a new frame for the SP with provisions for the ADJ. sights. If there was any thought of up sizing the frame that would have been the time to do it.
The simple frame change you suggest would require MILLIONS in expenses . New casting molds . New machining jigs. A whole round of safety and function testing all at the expense of a very successful existing product . All to add 1 more round ? Plus it might alienate many of the existing customers that like it just the way it is...
Some interesting comments. Maybe Ruger is considering more changes to the SP line in the future? As for the cost of modifying the .38/.357 SP101 to a six-shot configuration, I'm doubtful that it would cost Ruger MILLIONS (of dollars) to do, with their investment casting and CNC machining capabilities. Adding one more round (or a few more) to a revolver cylinder? Ruger successfully did it to several models. "Alienate many of the existing customers". That is an odd thought. The concept being discussed here is the addition of a six-shot cylinder iteration to the current SP101 offerings. Fans of the five-shot SP101s would still be able to get them. Those that do not like the six-shot revolvers do not have to purchase them.

Oh: I could feel alienated... The GP100 is supposed to be a six-shot .357 Magnum revolver, but I saw that Ruger has made a FIVE-shot GP100, and it's in .44 SPECIAL caliber, too.
 

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Some interesting comments. Maybe Ruger is considering more changes to the SP line in the future? As for the cost of modifying the .38/.357 SP101 to a six-shot configuration, I'm doubtful that it would cost Ruger MILLIONS (of dollars) to do, with their investment casting and CNC machining capabilities. Adding one more round (or a few more) to a revolver cylinder? Ruger successfully did it to several models. "Alienate many of the existing customers". That is an odd thought. The concept being discussed here is the addition of a six-shot cylinder iteration to the current SP101 offerings. Fans of the five-shot SP101s would still be able to get them. Those that do not like the six-shot revolvers do not have to purchase them.

Oh: I could feel alienated... The GP100 is supposed to be a six-shot .357 Magnum revolver, but I saw that Ruger has made a FIVE-shot GP100, and it's in .44 SPECIAL caliber, too.
Good points. Investment costs are always something to consider. Ruger would have to raise the frame height and go from a 1.35" diameter cylinder to a traditional D frame sized 1.40" diameter cylinder. However, revolver frame changes are nothing new for Ruger. It seems that Ruger recently revised the GP100 frame to fix the issue with the seven shot GPs. I have read reports where owners of recent seven shot examples have shown that these new guns have a slightly larger diameter cylinder. Changing the GP frame to allow for seven rounds is really no different (in investment) than changing the SP frame to allow for six. Ruger also changed the original SP101 frame in the early 90s to allow heaver bullets in the .357 versions. Ruger has also ponied up to reintroduce the Bearcat and the mid size single actions in the past. I think the investment costs would be more than worth it, as a six shot .38/.357 SP101 (as described above) would have great appeal and take away the one advantage their competitors have. It also just makes sense to have a D frame sized revolver with six chambers.
 

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JWintergreen, How soon we forget! In 1972, Ruger introduced a gun that matches your desires to a "T". It was a Security-Six with the Speed-Six and Service-Six following soon after. These guns were sized the same as a S&W K-frame (or "D" sized, depending on whose opinion you like) but were chambered in 357 Mag, 38 Special, 9mm, and 380 Rimmed, with a 6 shot capacity. In 1986, Ruger introduced the GP100, which has about the same profile as a S&W L frame. Ruger's intent was to produce both models, however two years after the GP100 was introduced, sales for the Security-Six family were so poor that Ruger discontinued them in 1988.

What does this tell you? It tells me Ruger learned a lesson and would rather stay with a model that sells good than go back to a K-frame sized gun that had poor sales.
 

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"As for the cost of modifying the .38/.357 SP101 to a six-shot configuration, I'm doubtful that it would cost Ruger MILLIONS (of dollars) to do, with their investment casting and CNC machining capabilities. " - firescout

Molds do not last forever. When they wear out would be a good time to change. The issue is not how much does it cost $$$ to make the changes BUT whether when doing the changes one can cover the cost i.e. cover or exceed the cost of capital in returns. How many sales does Ruger lose (opportunity costs) because they do not offer a model when someone decides they want a small frame 6 shot revolver and goes elsewhere. And when they get "elswhere" they might become happy with what they buy and in the future when they want some other model e.g. .44 mag might decide to buy what they offer in that, too.

Speaking of frame changes once upon a time S&W decided they would offer an 8 shot .357 mag N frame. To do so they had to make some frame changes for this model and this model only i.e. move the barrel a bit higher in the frame. I doubt there is a large sales volume of the 8 shot .357 relative to the other N frames in .41, .44 and .45 caliber yet they did this.
 

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JWintergreen, How soon we forget! In 1972, Ruger introduced a gun that matches your desires to a "T". It was a Security-Six with the Speed-Six and Service-Six following soon after. These guns were sized the same as a S&W K-frame (or "D" sized, depending on whose opinion you like) but were chambered in 357 Mag, 38 Special, 9mm, and 380 Rimmed, with a 6 shot capacity. In 1986, Ruger introduced the GP100, which has about the same profile as a S&W L frame. Ruger's intent was to produce both models, however two years after the GP100 was introduced, sales for the Security-Six family were so poor that Ruger discontinued them in 1988.

What does this tell you? It tells me Ruger learned a lesson and would rather stay with a model that sells good than go back to a K-frame sized gun that had poor sales.
The Six Series does not fit this role at all. The Six Series and Smith K/L frames are medium frame service revolvers. D frame sized revolvers are small revolvers (nearly identical is size to the SP101) with roughly a 1.40" diameter cylinder, and are just a hair larger than J frame sized guns. The steel versions are typically sub 30 ounce, six shot .38/.357 guns. The J frame sized guns also play a different role, as they are more friendly for pocket carry.

I am very aware of the unfortunate demise of the Six Series. Poor sales were not the major factor. In fact, there were over 2,000,000 produced from 1972 to 1988. These were fantastic sales numbers for the time. The guns were more expensive to produce, and were replaced with both the GP line (1986-also the year they axed the adj. sight Security Six) and the SP line which came out in 1989. This has always been controversial among fans of medium frame revolvers, as the Six Series had a dimensionally smaller frame than the GP, yet could still handle Magnum loads just fine. However, the Six Series is still a mid size revolver and does not work in the intended role.

There is no doubt in my mind that a Six Shot SP101 would sell better than the current five shooter. People are not going to turn their nose up at more capacity and size efficiency. As Rover pointed out, S&W made frame changes to the N frame to allow for eight shot .357 versions, and Ruger just recently made nearly identical changes to the GP frame to allow for seven shot .357 versions (they tried to avoid this on early models and rimlock was an issue with some ammo). These guns are still referred to as N frames and GPs, yet they are actually different frames and have different internal designations. If Ruger can do this for the GP line, they can do this for the SP line.

Raising the frame height a hair, and going from a 1.35" diameter cylinder to a 1.40" diameter cylinder will not add any noticeable weight and it will still work with D frame holsters. People have always compared the SP to the Detective Special, SF-VI, Magnum Carry, etc... However, they have always avoided the elephant in the room (its too big to be a five shooter). With the competition going in the D frame size direction, Ruger should finally listen and make these changes. They would sell very well.
 

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My question is why. Why not just buy the Smith.
When it comes to medium frame revolvers, you should just buy a Smith or a Ruger Six Series.

However, the SP101 should have been a small frame six shooter from day one (for reasons previously mentioned).

Smith and Wesson does not offer a D frame sized revolver. The plug was unfortunately pulled on the Model 73.

However, Charter, Taurus, Colt, and Kimber all do. This, along with years of demands from many revolver fans, should push Ruger in the right direction.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
I did a bit of poking around for info on 4" adjustable sight revolver weights. The full lug GP100 is 40 oz. The half lug GP100 Match Champion is 38 oz. The SP101 is 29.5 oz. The Security Six is 33.5 oz. And the S&W Model 15 is 34 oz.

I have owned a 4" GP100 for a long time. I shot a S&W Model 15 many years ago for my LE firearms training. I have shot my friend's short barrel .357 SP101. My most recent purchase is a 3" .357 LCRx.

I recently found out that a close friend of mine acquired a 4" stainless Security Six. I'm eager to get him out to the range so we can shoot it (!)

On the topic of the declining sales of the Security Six after the release of the GP100: Remember, this was also the period where semi-auto pistols (aka: WonderNines) were becoming very popular, and displacing the .38/.357 revolver as the standard LE sidearm.

I do think that a six-shot .38/.357 SP101 with a half lug barrel and adjustable sight could have appeal to fans of the Security Six. I would certainly buy one. I'm pretty sure not much could be trimmed from the GP100 MC to bring it closer to the 34 oz level, but maybe I'm wrong. All in all, I think it's an interesting concept for a new revolver.
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