GP100 vs SP101 for a Fighting Gun


December 11, 2010, 04:18 PM
Which do you prefer and why? SP101 in 2.25 or GP100 in 3.00 (exposed hammer on either).

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December 11, 2010, 05:05 PM
I'm just a cowboy/farmer..not a tactical gun expert, but I'll throw you my $.02.

I bought my 2.25" SP101 because it was the smallest .357 that Ruger offered.
I consider the .357 the smallest useful centerfire.
I already reload for the .357.
I have taken several deer with the .357.
I can hit 3x5 cards from 20 yds with my sp101.
It conceals easily.
It seems indestructable.

December 11, 2010, 05:18 PM
I have both the SP101 and GP100, and love them both dearly. But they both have longer barrels than in your question. That being said, the SP101,being lighter and smaller,is more comfortable to drag around,and more easily concealed. The GP100 with longer barrel is better for distance shooting, and has one more round in the cylinder than the SP101.
In a genuine firefight, I'd prefer my GP100, but I'd never have it with me unless someone started shooting at me while I was at the range:D.

December 11, 2010, 08:53 PM
I'm with Mildot, in a gun fight I'd much prefer my GP over my SP, but I can't conceal my 6" GP on a daily basis, so my 3" SP fills in.

Marvin KNox
December 11, 2010, 09:37 PM
To be an effective fighting gun it has to be on your belt when the crap hits the fan.

IMO the SP101 is much more likely to be ready for the fight when it breaks out.

Now - if this was the old West with it's open carry style - that would be something else again. :)

December 11, 2010, 09:51 PM
When facing the same question, I chose the Ruger SP-101 .357 Magnum with the 3" Barrel. Not being the kind to leave well enough alone, I also customized mine a bit further.

My semi-custom SP-101:

SP-101 Specs:

.357 Magnum 3" Barrel
IBOK Trigger Job (2.5lbs SA pull / 5lbs DA pull)
Complete pistol dehorn & shine
Ugly lawyer roll-mark removal from the barrel
Mepro Night Sight
Hogue Grips

December 11, 2010, 09:53 PM
Very nicely done. Did you do it yourself? If not, who did the work. Dave

December 11, 2010, 10:31 PM
Why one or the other? Several of each! The SP101 is a bit larger and heftier than an S&W J-frame, so it will behave much more like a true fightin' revolver. A GP100 undoubtedly IS a big, hefty fightin' sixgun, but one with a 4" barrel can be concealed amazingly well.

Hammer spurs? I carried two SP101 snubbies to the grocery store earlier. One had a hammer spur, and the other no spur. Yes, within sight of the building housing the Israeli consulate, and within the shadow of an energy/banking center, I will indeed carry two snubbies, and actually, that was light. I often carry one snubby and something bigger on such occasions.

If it came down to having only one or the other, for all purposes, GP100 is my choice. I actually carry my SP101s more often.

December 11, 2010, 10:39 PM
Which do you prefer and why? SP101 in 2.25 or GP100 in 3.00 (exposed hammer on either).
S&W Model 19 (or variation of), SP101, Taurus Model 82. Any one of these would be fine with me.

357 Terms
December 12, 2010, 08:30 AM
Hypotheticaly in a fire fight- the gp100, better control of the magnum rounds and one more bullet.

December 12, 2010, 08:41 AM
I have a Ruger SP101 in 2 3/4" and the 3 1/8" as well as a Ruger Sec 6 in 2 3/4 and a S&W 386 3".

Of them all I carry the Ruger 3 1/8 in the woods as well as a carry gun when I do carry a wheel gun.

I like the SA/DA option as well as the longer barrel for a better sighting plain.

But the Security 6 shoots better than them all AND is comfortable with even Buffalo Bore loads.

December 12, 2010, 09:39 AM
I would choose the GP-100 without a second thought between the two if I had the option to choose before a "fight". Seldom are things so orderly.

Seven For Sure
December 12, 2010, 10:46 AM
I'd choose the S&W 627 over either of those. Eight cases popped out and rounds thrown back in with moonclips. A 3" barrel if shots were under 50 ft., 4" tube if shot's were longer.

It'd be great to pick a gun when the SHTF, I'd have an AK with 75 rd. drum with me or more likely just stay home that day. Since we can't predict the future, a 3" 686+ is about the biggest, highest capacity revolver I could (in reality) plan to have on me if my worst nightmares were to come true.

December 12, 2010, 10:58 AM
If I know there is going to be a gunfight then I would take the SP101 with me AND MAKE PLANS TO GO SOMEWHERE ELSE! LOL. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

Honestly, I would say it's preference but IMHO if concealment isn't a concern carry a full size gun with good ammo capacity and a barrel between 4-5" depending on taste. For a duty type weapon, I like the full size 4" polymer semiautos. If a revolver is still what you want then a good service model gun like a Security Six or Model 13 should work.

December 12, 2010, 11:11 AM
Unless concealment is the overriding concern, I'll ALWAYS prefer six shots to five.

Given that I won't buy any six shot revolver that S&W makes these days, if I needed a NEW six shot double action revolver, it'd just about HAVE to be a GP100. I've got a 3" S&W Model 65 and the 3" GP100 would about fill the same niche.

December 12, 2010, 06:53 PM
I like both, but the SP-101 is the one I'm most likely to have with me.
For a real "fighting gun", I'd prefer any semi-auto magazine fed rifle of military heritage to any handgun.

December 12, 2010, 08:59 PM
There both fine revolvers each having there own pro's and con's the GP having the extra round would have the edge for me but that being said thr SP is almost always in closer reach... sorry tough choice.

Brett Byers AKA Slow
December 12, 2010, 10:29 PM
Good Evening CT,
I have both and as others have said the GP100 has longer sight radius and one more round and heavier. Consequently, IMHO is easier to shoot well. However, for a CCW for a civilian the SP101 IMHO is superior. I don't feel undergunned with one less round and since I subscribe primarily to point shooting in close encounters of the worst kind the longer sight radius isn't a concern. I don't pocket carry either one so I prefer a hammer. I believe either weapon to be a viable fighting weapon. I recommend reading Stephen Camp's posts regarding these two options.

Lucky Derby
December 13, 2010, 11:24 AM
If I know there is to be a gun fight, I will bring either a Garand or an AR. Any pistol will be a back-up weapon. gain, if I know there is going to be a gunfight, and my only choices for a back-up are a GP100 or a SP101, I will go with the GP100 for the extra round.
That said for the average CCW weapon, a SP101 is a hard to beat gun. I can think of no better comprimise of size, power & controlability . A Steel J frame magnum might come close, but not quite there.

Old John
December 13, 2010, 05:01 PM
I have Both a Ruger SP101, 2.25" .357, and A Ruger GP100, 3", ,357.
I would not part with either of them.
I carry the SP101 every day, in a Galco OSW, High-ride open-top, pancake holster.
It is lighter & easier to lug around all day.Both guns are great shooters.
On occasion I carry the GP100, because of the extra round and quicker repeat shots,
like when I go up to the City. I live rural.
I'm just an old guy who feels safer with a .357 at my hip. I don't really ever expect I'll ever get into a gunfight......But just in case..........

The only thing I've killed with my EDC is a Copperhead snake I ran over while mowing, out away from the house.

December 13, 2010, 05:41 PM
If you are going to carry, the sp101 fits in a pocket holster without much trouble.

The gp100 not so much.

Summer carry with the gp100 limits your attire.

Sp101 will fit be easier to tote around in the summer, since it really does not print much, and in winter can be tossed in a coat pocket.

December 13, 2010, 07:44 PM
Clint Smith: "The handgun would not be my choice of weapon if I knew I was going to a fight....I'd choose a rifle, a shotgun, an RPG or an atomic Bomb instead."

If I couldn't get my hands on my choice of weapons I'd pick the GP100 if it was laying beside the SP101. If the GP100 wasn't there, well then I'd pick the SP101.

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