3" GP100 vs. 3" Sp101


December 17, 2005, 10:38 AM
Trying to decide between a 3" sp101 and 3" gp100 for home defense, ccw and light trail gun.
I love both guns, and recall they both fit my hand well. I don't live near a gun store with both guns in stock anymore, so now I'm guessing which one fits my hand best. Can't remember specifics, just remember both fit me well.
The sp101 speedloaders fit my 342pd (my "always, everywhere" gun). The gp100 holds one extra round. Sp101 is lighter and easier to carry on the hip i guess.
Which do your recommend I get, and why? I've read numerous reviews (icluding Mr. Camp's impressions of both-great job Mr. Camp), and I fired an sp101 years ago (2") and enjoyed it.
What do you think?


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December 17, 2005, 11:05 AM
SP101, light on the hip afield. Why worry over an extra round?

The GP100 does have adjustable sites. But, I'd rather have the more rugged fixed system and just try ammo until you find what works with it. The one advantage to the GP, though, if you like to shoot a lot of .38s, you can adjust the elevation. That might be imprortant to you as an outdoor gun. If so, I'd change the vote. ;)

December 17, 2005, 11:07 AM
Having owned both models, and noting your usability requirements for carry and as a trail gun, I vote for the lighter weight and slightly smaller SP-101. The reduced size and weight will make it easier to carry concealed or on the trail. The one less extra round for these purposes do not concern me overly much. I figure that if my problem has not been solved by five rounds of .357 125 grain JHP, it is time to go to Plan B, which is either run away, duck for cover and reload or use the revolver as a club!

December 17, 2005, 11:17 AM
*If* CCW is a consideration the SP101 is the best choice. For other tasks, the GP100 is the better choice (marginally).

I went with the GP100, but my line of work puts me in government and school buildings, so CCW is not an option.

A good holster and belt make the GP's weight a non-issue when field carrying. JMO.

December 17, 2005, 11:27 AM
I own an SP101 3" and went with it over a larger 6 shot revolver because I will be carrying it concealed a good bit of the time. I also do not have a smaller pocket carry J-frame like you have. If I did and could afford to keep both, I would get a 4" GP100 and have the best of both worlds. If you already have the 342PD, go with the GP but get a longer barrel. Thank me later.


Gary A
December 17, 2005, 12:26 PM
I have both and love both. Looking at all your uses/requirements I voted for the SP101 also. Both are 3 inch, both have fixed sights. For home defense the GP is superior, IMO. For shooting stiff loads, the GP is superior, IMO. But for CCW and "light" trail use, I would choose the SP. The SP does all three things you want well enough and carries easier and more discreetly than the GP. Ultimately, you may well want both. I did and am very happy.

December 17, 2005, 12:31 PM
I voted SP101 because it's somewhat easier to conceal. But why sacrifice? Those guns are priced well, get both! I have a GP100 4", and should have a SP101 3" in .38 Special soon.


December 17, 2005, 12:53 PM
If I'm going to get a 3 inch its going to be with the smaller framed SP101. If I'm going 4 inch, I want the GP100.

Dollar An Hour
December 17, 2005, 12:56 PM
SP101, light on the hip afield. Why worry over an extra round?

The GP100 does have adjustable sites.

Not in 3".

I'd say get the SP if CCW is part of the equation. I love my 3" GP for it's balance and the way it feels in the hand, but not for it's CC ability.

December 17, 2005, 01:06 PM
Not in 3".

I'd say get the SP if CCW is part of the equation. I love my 3" GP for it's balance and the way it feels in the hand, but not for it's CC ability.

Mmm, yeah, I'd get a 4" GP.

December 18, 2005, 03:50 PM
I think it depends a lot on how the gun feels in your hand. I held both the SP and the GP, and I went with the GP because it fit my hand like a glove while the SP was too small and uncomfortable in my hands. I won't be concealing very often and I will be spending a lot of time at the range, so the GP was the better option for me.

December 18, 2005, 08:14 PM
Bought a gp100 w/3" barrel today.
I'm already saving for the sp101 to go with it...............:D
Thanks to all who replied,

December 18, 2005, 08:22 PM
I've had both. Both great, but my 3" SP101 is the hands down winner for ME.
In fact, except for hunting, this may be my very favorite revolver.

December 18, 2005, 10:54 PM
I'm already picking out guns to sell to finance an sp101.
I don't know why I didn't buy one before.

Big Mike
December 20, 2005, 08:28 PM
I find my 3" GP100 to be balanced. Mike

December 21, 2005, 12:09 AM
double post

December 21, 2005, 12:10 AM
If it was me, I'd get both.

The SP 101 is easier to conceal, especially in weight (doesn't drag the belt down as much).

The GP 100 is a lot easier on the shooter with the heavies (180-200 grain bullets ). The GP 100 gives mild to moderate recoil with every single .357 magnum load I've tried. Put these same heavier loads in an SP, and IMO it is uncomfortable. The GP also balances better for me.

Each revolver is an excellent choice, but they fill slightly different niches IMO.

If I had to pick just one, I'd give the nod to the GP.

December 21, 2005, 12:34 PM
Since I already have a 4" GP100, The SP101 would be the one I'd opt to obtain! :)


December 21, 2005, 02:07 PM
This is literally one of the hardest decisions ever. No joke, I sat here and looked at the poll for over 5 mins. I voted the SP101, because they just look so sexy in Badger grips and for your intended use, I think it would be a good choice.

Heck, either gun will serve you well. The GP100 has 1 extra round and is a bigger frame, which means less felt recoil. It isn't overly bulky and would also be a good choice. Less concealable if that is your thing, but a fine gun none the less.


December 21, 2005, 02:41 PM
do not sell your .32 Magnum! You'll regret it! :what: :uhoh:


Pistol Toter
December 23, 2005, 05:27 PM
I would like to comment. I first purchased a 2 1/4 SP101 and thought it was a very fine weapon. I thought I wanted a 3" SP and set out to acquire one but bought a 3" GP100. I never bought the 3" SP. I must admit that purchase was a bad mistake! While the 3" GP is good gun, I have NEVER warmed up to it. It is too big to carry in the deep concealment, the sight radius is not that much greater in that if you accurately measure the sight to sight deminsion on both guns the difference is minimal. The GP is or feels much heavier. Do as you please, you understand but if I were going to purchase another SP it would be another 2 1/4 because for several reasons but I have learned that the leather for a 3" is not easy to find and if I were to buy a GP it would be a 4" with adjustable sights which would not be a prime choice for CCW. One could carry a 4" ( I have) but it would be somewhat bulky. My carry pieces are the 2 1/4" SP or a Glock 21. Just my 2 cent fellows.

December 25, 2005, 07:09 PM
The SP101 is sized right and only lacks only one round compared to the GP100's.:p

Stephen A. Camp
December 25, 2005, 07:26 PM
Hello. I own both the GP and SP101 in the 3" versions. Though I like both, were I required to give up one, I'd keep the SP101.


December 25, 2005, 07:55 PM
I'd vote speed-six if it were an option:D

December 26, 2005, 04:41 AM
I faced this very dilemma some time ago.

The short version is I would like to have both, but I chose the GP100 3" barrel fixed sights.

Long version? I just like it better. I like the L frame, and I actually like the weight.

I honestly feel like it's the perfect combat revolver for 2005(6), a grand old classic design executed with the advantages of modern design (and none of the foibles). I do think my 4" 686 is more diverse, but for defensive use I feel like the Ruger in this configuration is a better gun with its easier to conceal length and fixed sights.

To be fair what I was really seeking was essentially a 3" barreled 681, and this GP-100 of mine, although different, had the form factor, balance, and size I was searching for so I bought it. I do not regret it at all and have even sold off another revolver since because I felt like the GP100 had supplanted it.

Having the GP makes me want the SP, but I feel like I'd feel that way no matter what.

Jeff Timm
December 26, 2005, 07:57 AM
For a field / Home Defense gun, I'll stick with a .357 4" Revolver. If I had to replace my snub nose .38, I'd get the SP-101 3" with a set of Hogue tapered grips, like I have on my 4" .22LR SP-101.

Who has a Ruger Security-Six Heavy Barrel 4"

December 26, 2005, 10:30 AM
GP100 (please explain your choice below)
SP101 (please explain your choice below)
*Can't go wrong with either.

I voted SP101 due to there not being a third choice.

The SP does "look sexy in Badger's" but also look sexy in Hogues.

December 30, 2005, 11:41 AM
Got my GP100 yesterday. Can't wait to shoot it. Built like a tank. Trigger is very smooth. Can't wait to fire off some rounds.

December 30, 2005, 12:33 PM
I think you made the right choice with the 3" GP100.

Reasoning? The more powerful loads are fun to shoot in the GP, but are painful (for me) in the SP. Also, the SP is a bit too heavy for easy pocket carry, but rides well on a belt. If you're going to carry on a belt anyway, might as well go for the stouter gun.


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