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SP101 vs J-Frame Size?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Panzerschwein, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    Hey all! I know the Ruger SP101 is heavier than many J-frames, but how much LARGER is it?

    I tried looking and there are no good comparisons that I could find after a browse.

    What say you? Is the SP101 harder to conceal? Can it be concealed with a T-shirt in hot weather? Reason I ask is because I *may* be the new owner of one soon. I plan to IWB carry it, not pocket carry. :)

    Thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
  2. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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  3. WrongHanded

    WrongHanded Member

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    I've never done a side by side comparison, as I never had both frames at the same time. But I did carry an SP101 for about a year. Sometimes in a pocket holster, other times in a Simply Rugged OWB.

    Compact heavyweight revolver, for sure.
     
  4. EmGeeGeorge

    EmGeeGeorge Member

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    Size is similar; sp101 has more to it, so it’ll fit most j frame holsters but very tightly, so you’d need to get proper leather/kydex/ etc or you’re likely to get the holster to come outta the pants before the gun’ll come outta the holster.

    That said the weight is greater if you’re talking air weights in j frames.

    You’d want a good holster, t-shirts will need to be longer potentially, and a strong rigid belt makes a difference.
     
  5. John_R

    John_R Member

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    The Ruger is a little bigger, it’s enough to notice. Both are about equally easy to conceal, barrel lengths being equal.
     
  6. SteadyD

    SteadyD Member

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    I own both and while they are similar the sp101 is noticeably bigger. I also Googled sp101 vs j frame size and selected images and found a good comparison of a 640 vs the sp101. The image shows the 640 wearing larger grips so keep in mind the height difference favors the jframe when using a boot grip. Obviously one of the airweights will be shorter in length and lighter than the 640.

    For everyday carry the j frame gets the nod. For an extended shooting session or carrying magnum ammo, the sp101 gets the nod, in my opinion.
     
  7. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    20170119_210915.jpg 20170119_210756.jpg
    Very comparable in size to an Officer's ACP
     
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  8. Waveski

    Waveski Member

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    I do not have comparative stats , but ... in my experience the SP101 crosses the threshold of what weight and bulk I am willing to carry when I am physically active. A steel J frame is just right.
    To me the two are too different to be comparable.
     
  9. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

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    The weight is considerably more. I carry a SP probably 300 days a year. The cuff on many of my jeans is frayed from where my pants ride a little lower on my carry side...lol
     
  10. Monster Zero

    Monster Zero Member

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    That combination works just fine for me with a cover garment. The SP is heavier but it's compact. Cinch it up good with a good belt and cover it up and you'll be fine.
     
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  11. unclenunzie

    unclenunzie Member

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    SP101 and 642. They really don't share holsters in my experience. J<SP<K
     
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  12. sean m

    sean m Member

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    I think my sp101 2.25" 357 weighs in at 25 oz. Definitely heavier than a S&W 36. But really depends on carry method. Strong side owb the Ruger is fine and handles magnums far easier.
     
  13. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    Thanks! What's a good IWB holster for the SP?
     
  14. Waveski

    Waveski Member

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    Bianchi 6D ATB. Same one for J frame , needs more break-in for SP. Good release , very secure ride.
     
  15. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    I would suggest the Simply Rugged Silver Dollar pancake with the IWB straps. I have the same rig for my 3" K6S, and it holds the pistol high and tight and very secure. These are designed to be OWB holsters, but work very, very well as IWB as well. 2 for the price of 1 if you will.

    https://www.simplyrugged.com/ecomme...aled-Carry-Holster.cfm?item_id=152&parent=669
     
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  16. bassjam

    bassjam Member

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    I have an Airweight, and Airlite, and an SP101. Obviously the weight can't really be compared unless I owned a steel j frame, but the SP is slightly larger. To me the biggest difference is the grips through, which can be changed. The SP has grips long enough that my pinky kind of grips on the bottom corner and does help some, while my pinky doesn't touch a think on the boot grips on my j-frames. There's also the difference of barrel length, 1.875" vs 2.25"

    The j-frames can't be beat for pocket carry, but I bought the SP to wear on my hip where the larger grip can be taken advantage of.
     
  17. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    Thank you. The SP101 I bought is the SPNY model in .38 special only. No problem as my favorite snub load is Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel 135 +Ps. I figure the extra weight and mass will make it a smooth easy shooter and it has the shorter frame/cylinder and a DAO hammer.
     
  18. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    I'm not as trim as I'd like to be, but I'm still "fit" shaped and wear athletic cut clothing. I don't wear baby T's and my wranglers aren't painted on, but it's a challenge for me to conceal either a J-frame or an SP101 in my daily attire. I do still frequently dress functionally to carry either of them, and have for many years. A 60 was my first concealed carry handgun about 20yrs ago. They're close enough to be in the same class, so unless you are RIGHT ON THE LINE of unable to conceal the J-frame, the SP101 won't be significantly different.

    I am, however, right on the line for the weight with either of these. The size isn't what makes the difference to me between the J-Frames and the SP101, it's the weight. I'm right on the edge for my weight tolerance with either, and after a long day, much walking, the wrong belt, hot weather, or an uncomfortable chair, those few ounces make a big difference for my comfort. I actually prefer the even larger LCR for my "first choice" CC revolver over the others.

    If you can conceal the J-frame, you can conceal the SP101. How comfortable you are with slightly more weight, or slightly more bulk is a subjective preference.
     
  19. expat_alaska

    expat_alaska Member

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    I don't have J-frame to compare, but an SP101, even with a 3" barrel, is concealable with an IWB holster @ 4 o'clock for me.

    I have a first-year-of-manufacture 1989 .38 3" which I load with +p ammo with a speedloader for possible reloads. While it is a bit heavier than a steel J, it is very easy to shoot, with 2 caveats.

    The trigger on mine was not good, but it was basically due to the heavy spring weights on both the mainspring and trigger return spring. I cured that with a Wolff spring kit and changed out the mainspring and return spring to 10# and 8#, respectively. Factory trigger return spring is 10 pounds, factory mainspring is 14 pounds. While it was apart I judiciously removed any sharp edges (yes I got cut!) except for the hammer/sear fit. [Test fire the pistol when using the newer springs to be sure the hammer is striking the primer(s) adequately and the trigger resets properly.]

    https://www.gunsprings.com/revolvers/ruger/sp-101/cid3/mid52/did234

    I have long fingers and the factory grip is just plainly too small for me. Replaced it with a Hogue Mono-Grip and all of my fingers fit on the grip.

    After reassembly it was just a completely different pistol.

    I like!

    I have no problem with its weight for carry as I wear sturdy suspenders (which carry the weight for a 165# 65-year-old guy) and a slightly loose-fitting wide belt is only necessary to hang the holster upon.

    Admittedly, my 1911 .45 5" with a Clip-Draw is more concealable, even without a belt at the same position. And I walk, not jog. :thumbup:

    Jim
     
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  20. Gary A

    Gary A Member

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    I’ve always considered the Sp101 to be between a J-frame and a K-frame. (And, I believe, at least as strong as a K-frame. Maybe stronger.)
     
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  21. expat_alaska

    expat_alaska Member

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    The SP101 is a tank. I have a spare cylinder that is bored for .357 Mag 125 grain HP only (for length), but it is not at all pleasant to shoot, even with the Hogue Monogrip.

    My wife and I will stick with the original .38 +P for recoil management as that is her HD pistol. And it is a very stout pistol, to say the least.

    Jim
     
  22. If1HitU

    If1HitU Member

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    I don't see how the SP 101 would be that difficult to concealed with a IWB holster.
     
  23. Gary A

    Gary A Member

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    It’s really not.
     
  24. George P

    George P Member

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    A S&W 642 is 6.31" long, 4.16 high, 1.28 wide, weighs 14.25 empty. The Ruger SP101, version 5718, is 7.20" long and weighs 26oz. - almost twice as heavy.
     
  25. 5-SHOTS

    5-SHOTS Member

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    I used to own a Ruger SP101 DAO and a S&W 649-1 Bodyguard. The Ruger was at least 1'' longer (half inch the barrel and the other half the frame in the grip area, more or less) and 4 ounces havier. The Ruger was more shootable.
     
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