“Everyday carry” is the watchword du jour for those of us who take personal self-defense seriously. The concept of EDC serves as a constant reminder to be ready to deal with anything that threatens our well-being by having a firearm, along with other defensive tools and support gear, available to us 24/7.
For the average-sized person such as myself, an EDC firearm has to be compact and as light as possible for its caliber. If the firearm in question does not have these characteristics, then I am not going to carry it on an everyday basis. Perhaps I would for special occasions, but not every day if the gun is too heavy or large to be comfortable.
Ruger Security 9
The new Ruger Security 9 represents a different take on an EDC gun. It is not a micro-sized gun with a limited magazine capacity. Rather, it is a compact, full-capacity pistol that pushes the EDC concept right to the limit.
Here are the technical specifications of the new Security 9. It comes with two 15-round magazines. Weight is quite manageable at 23.9 ounces due to the glass-filled nylon frame and lightweight, hard-coated aluminum chassis. The barrel is 4 inches long. The gun is 7.24 inches long and 5 inches high. The slide is 1.02 inches wide. The dimensions of the Security 9 are right there with the Glock 19, even though its slide is 0.16 inches narrower than the Glock’s.
Slide & Barrel
According to Ruger’s website, the blued slide and barrel are made of through-hardened alloy steel. There is no description of the level of rust-resistance, but if true bluing is being used, then the level of rust-resistance is not that of nitride or other more modern types of finishes. The advantage of using bluing over modern, hi-tech finishes, however, is that it keeps the cost down — and low cost is one of the selling points of the Security 9.
I like the sights on the Security 9. The front is a bright white dot, and the rear sight has a U-shaped white outline. I greatly prefer this setup over a three-dot setup. Different colors for sight options are available. The rear sight is drift-adjustable for windage.
The grip is nicely sized and is stippled on the sides, front and rear. The stippling is not too aggressive; it’s just right, I would say. There is no provision for interchangeable back straps, and really, none is needed. The magazine release is smooth, small and easily managed. The alloy steel magazines drop free easily.
The slide release lever needs to be extended a few thousandths of an inch away from the frame. It simply does not protrude far enough away from the frame to drop the slide with the thumb during reloading. One of my fellow police firearms instructors, who was with me when I tested the Security 9, also could not manage to drop the slide with one thumb. Those of us who use the slide release for what it was intended need larger releases. (For those of you saying that I should release the slide by retracting it with my left hand because we supposedly lose the fine motor skills under stress, I say this: If we did lose so much fine motor skill under stress that we also couldn’t operate a slide release with our thumb, we couldn’t drop the magazine with our thumb or pull the trigger properly with our index finger either. Think critically about that for a while, and remember this loss of fine skill “issue” came out only during the last 10 or so years of the 117 years of gunfighting with the Colt 1911 and other semi-automatic pistols.)
The Security 9 uses the same Secure Action firing system derived from Ruger’s excellent LCP II micro-pistol, which uses a bladed trigger safety coupled with a hammer-fired system rather than a striker-fired system. The Secure Action system provides a crisp trigger pull which feels like a single-action pull.
The Security 9 also has an additional manual safety located on the same position of the frame as that of a 1911. There is a difference, however, between this safety and the 1911’s. The safety on the Security 9 is set to the on position by pushing it up, rather that rocking it back as one would on a 1911. I found it easiest to push the safety up at the rear. Disengaging it requires only a downward sweep. While you can carry the Security 9 without the additional safety on, Ruger’s safety manual recommends against doing so.
The Security 9’s frame features a rail for attaching accessories. There are front and rear cocking serrations. There is a large loaded-chamber viewing port to ensure the chamber is loaded, but no flag system as one finds in other Ruger pistols (which, again, saves the consumer money).
Testing the Security 9 at the Shooting Range
I tested the Security 9 at the shooting range using SIG Sauer’s new 9mm 365 Elite Ammunition. While both the practice and the V-Crown loads were designed with SIG’s new P365 pistol in mind, they work great in any gun. The 365 loads are designed to put an adequate level of power on target while maintaining controllability when fired from lighter guns. Both use 115-grain bullets with a muzzle velocity of 1,050 feet per second with 282 foot-pounds of energy. Both loads were very pleasant to shoot from the Security 9 and were dialed in dead-on with the sights. I fired both from 20 and 30 feet from a two-handed, standing position. At 20 feet, I was rewarded with a nearly one-hole group (with a couple of flyers). At 30 feet, things were still tight and to the point of aim. Functioning was flawless.
I was quite impressed with the Ruger Security 9’s performance and handling. I was just as impressed with the $379 MSRP — which is hard to beat.
If you are looking for a moderately sized, high-capacity 9mm at an affordable price, consider the Security 9. It proves that Ruger has come a long way from the days of its first 9mm semi-automatic pistol (the P85). I think you will be suitably impressed.
More info at: www.ruger.com