In this gun writer’s humble opinion, the Ruger SP101 is the unequivocal pinnacle of Magnum power in a robust yet compact offering. While the SP101 is available in a number of different calibers (.357 Magnum, .38 Special, .327 Federal, and .22 LR) and barrel lengths (4.2-inch, 3-inch, and 2.25-inch), this review will focus on the 2.25-inch barreled version that holds five rounds of .357 Magnum.
The SP101 is a very good pistol for any new shooter or gun owner who doesn’t get caught up in the details of a pistol’s fit and finish. If you’re looking for a gun to introduce a girlfriend, wife, or all-around novice into the world of firearms, the SP101 is a perfect choice (or any other double action revolver for that matter).
Construction is very solid. This gun is built like the proverbial tank. The frame, cylinder, and barrel are all solid stainless steel with a brushed finish. Unlike other revolvers, where the grip frame defines the shape of the factory grip, the Ruger has a straight stub projecting downward from the frame. This holds the coil mainspring. In fact, coil springs are used throughout. Internal parts are few in number and very robust. The frame has no side-plate, so the steel is full thickness throughout.