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Ruger LCR .38 recoil

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Guvnor, Dec 26, 2012.

  1. Guvnor

    Guvnor Well-Known Member

    Recently got an LCR in .22lr for the wife to use as a home defense gun. She was very gun shy and had very little firearms experience.

    Well I am happy to say that she is loving the LCR...her confidence is growing and she is getting pretty darn good with it. I am hoping that perhaps by the spring time she will be ready to move up in caliber. Since she is so acclimated to the LCR .22 and it fits her so well, I'm thinking moving up to the .38 version would be a good move.

    But I'm a little worried about the recoil factor since she really hates recoil and intense muzzle blast. She has shot an airweight s&w .38 before with a standard pressure load and didnt like it at all. But I'm thinking with the big Houge tamer grips the LCR might be a little more manageable loaded with something like wadcutters.

    So what's the felt recoil like on the LCR .38 with MILD standard pressure loads like wadcutters or maybe the 110 grain standard hollowpoints?
  2. firesky101

    firesky101 Well-Known Member

    The LCR has much less felt recoil than you would think given its weight. I have the KLCR, and while I would not call putting a box of .357 through it enjoyable it is doable. My 93lb wife will shoot me out of .38sp if I let her, since I bought the LCR for her after all:evil:. Low pressure wadcutters will hardly recoil at all.
  3. Bush Pilot

    Bush Pilot Well-Known Member

    If you're a reloader you can work up a mild load that will make the LCR very pleasant to shoot. I'll have to admit the LCR in .38 special is not fun to shoot with factory loads.
  4. Madcap_Magician

    Madcap_Magician Well-Known Member

    Recoil is stiff, about the same as an Airweight S&W (I've owned both and shot the same ammo through both, everything from 130-gr. FMJ to 135-gr. +P Gold Dots), but less painful due to the better grip design. Trigger is better on the LCR.

    Honestly J-frame sized revolvers are not for anyone who truly hates recoil.

    You might try an SP101 with a trigger job and .38 +P ammo. That still has some recoil to it, but it's relatively mild and not painful.
  5. Flint Ridge

    Flint Ridge Well-Known Member

    I got the .357 for the added weight. This should help dial down the recoil of the .38's you want to shoot and I agree heavy wadcutters 148 - 158 grain seem the easiest.

    Does your range rent them? Do you know anybody that has one? They are becoming pretty popular. I have not tried the .22 but I have heard its trigger is stiffer, so a smoother trigger may await her. Possibly others can chime in on that point.
  6. weblance

    weblance Well-Known Member

    I have J Frames, the LCR 357 and SP101s in 357. If she is as recoil shy as you say, the only choice IMHO is the added weight of the SP101. She will hate the recoil from the LCR. The SP101 is much better for felt recoil. Have you considered a 3" GP100? Even better yet for recoil control.
  7. Guvnor

    Guvnor Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the help. the sp101 might be a better idea. I would love to get a gp100 but i think she might have trouble with the huge grip.
  8. CPO15

    CPO15 Well-Known Member

    Before I traded my LCR in .38 I swapped the CT grips with a Hogue "Tamer" grip ordered from Ruger; really did make it more enjoyable to shoot. If you can, try before you buy. Also, the all steel J frames do soak up a bit more recoil.
  9. weblance

    weblance Well-Known Member

    Ruger has sold the older 3" GP100s, and fixed sights GP100s with a compact grip. It looks like the factory old style grip with wood inserts, but is smaller. Its a nice size, in between the SP101 grip and Full Size GP100 grip. They are discontinued, but can be had on Ebay. I bought 2 of them recently from ebay, for $20 each without inserts. The wood inserts can be had from many sources, because they are the same as the SP101 inserts. The GP100 might be a good option, because it allows a 6th cartridge, and is even better for soaking up recoil.
  10. Hoppes Love Potion

    Hoppes Love Potion Well-Known Member

    I would say to not force more recoil on her just yet. She is loving the LCR-22 and gaining confidence, which is excellent. If she never "moves up" but becomes proficient with the 8-shot .22, then she is still capable of defending herself.

    At some point she will likely become a little jaded by the mild kick of the .22 and will have enough confidence to try something stronger. In that case, I would maybe go to a steel revolver in .38 Special. If she develops a comfort level with that, then trying a LCR-38 or KLCR might be the next step.
  11. herkyguy

    herkyguy Well-Known Member

    here's an idea: get the SP101 with the 4" barrel. They're relatively new, but available online. a bit longer sight radius and also some added weight. They are also aesthetically great looking guns.

    and if you're really into it, get the matching SP101 in .22 and all will be well!
  12. Agsalaska

    Agsalaska Well-Known Member

    I agree with the sp101 or gp100. You ca also get 119 grain ammo, I think from Hornady, that out of either of those guns will be easy for her to shoot.

    Another suggestion may be the 327 federal in an sp101 or gp100. Buy the 327 but start her out with 32 mag. Let her get comfortable with that. Then step her up to the lower recoil 327 rounds. That option may have more versatility to it, especially considering you could even start with 32 s&w.
  13. Hondo 60

    Hondo 60 Well-Known Member

    I have an airweight S&W Model 38.
    standard 38 Specials are not fun.
    But I reload, so I was able to create a load specifically for that gun.
    With the reloads, I can shoot all day. :)
  14. CZF

    CZF Well-Known Member

    I never liked 158 grain +Ps in my 38+P LCRs, even with the Tamer grip.

    Much preferred the 110 and 125s.

    LCR recoil seems to be a lot less for me than a comparable J frame,
    as the polymer frame soaks up recoil and you don't have a chunk of
    steel or alum. slapping your palm.
  15. Stress_Test

    Stress_Test Well-Known Member

    Go for the 357 LCR, with the bigger grip (NOT the small boot-grip or laser grip) and shoot .38s out of that.

    I haven't shot any 158gr 38s from mine yet, but all the other loads have been fine. 125gr +P don't cause any discomfort.

    The Winchester white box 38s in 130gr FMJ flat nose are a very soft shooting load. The ballistics table on the back shows them to be about like a .22 mag if I remember right. I can't image anyone in normal health having issues with those loads out of the 357 LCR.

    Cowboy action loads in .38 would also be an option, but I don't know if they'd be noticeably softer than the Winchester I mentioned above.

    I've shot an airweight Smith snubbie with .38+P (the gun had small, hard plastic grips) and I didn't like that AT ALL. The LCR with the big Houge grip is a world of difference.

    Wait for a sale on a 357 LCR and snag one. You can always shoot it yourself while you wait for her to work up to it! :)
  16. bsms

    bsms Well-Known Member

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