Sturm, Ruger, and Company, Inc. started as a small company in Southport, Connecticut in January 1949. Nowadays, it is found in multiple facets of public service, competitive shooting, and personal defense. Its philosophy could be summed up in its motto, “Arms Makers for Responsible Citizens”. I feel safe just by reading those words. However, it alarms me a little to read that they do not issue a warranty card. Instead, purchasers are directed to read their state statutes regarding implied warranties. A little education certainly did not hurt anyone, so I guess it’s also a plus.
Ruger EC9 vs LC9 Overview
There are 15 different models of Essential Compact 9 mm or EC9 listed on its website. All of them have a glass-filled nylon grip frame in addition to all the other components of its grips.
The first two models are black but have differently designed grips. The older 3283 design barely have any finger grooves. The newer 13211 model has a groove designed to slide easily between two fingers. It is also finished with an anti-slip grip.
For those curious about the colors, they have purple, flat dark earth, turquoise, gray, pink camouflage, Davidson’s brown, Savage Silver, Cobalt Kinetic Slate, and Battleworn Flag designs. Most of the colors have Cerakote finish counterparts. I found it fascinating to see so many colorful models. I guess it can be both a boon and a bane.
It’s a boon because cute and makes guns less threatening to those who want to dip their toes into the rigid world of weapons. It makes the model less intimidating. However, it can cause problems, especially to kids and teenagers who might take guns as mere toys. I would recommend caution and careful consideration when buying colorful models.
For purposes of this review though, I will be concentrating on the new 13211 model, set apart by its trademark Beavertail grip sleeve with Cobblestone texture. It weighs 18 ounces, 6 inches in length, 4.5 inches in height, and 1.21 inches in width. The grip is a 1:10 right-hand twist with six grooves. Its sights are integral, and the serrations are facing the rear, which reduces glare.
Both the slide and barrel are finished with black oxide. The slide is made from through-hardened alloy steel while the barrel is made out of alloy steel. Every purchase comes with one 7-round magazine with a plus one, totaling eight rounds in one magazine.
It’s hard to find reviews for the 13211 model, considering that it is new. Most of the reviews online are for the 3283 model. I did a little more research and found that the EC9 is a newer model. It only came out in the last few days of 2017, essentially 2018. Thus, the “new” 13211 model is even newer, and with everything that is going on in the world right now, it is understandable that there aren’t many reviews for the EC9.
Pros and Cons
The pros are:
- Non-threatening and non-intimidating designs for everyone;
- The new grip design is always a plus; and
- Much more inexpensive than its co-reviewee.
The cons are:
- Some of the colors make them look like toys;
- Right-hand twist may prove to be a hassle for left-handed shooters; and
- The instruction manual on the website is for the LC9. I am not sure if that is intentional or if they just have the same manual.
Ruger LC9 at a Glance
As opposed to its varied and colorful co-reviewee, The Ruger Lightweight Compact 9 mm or LC9 only has one model on its page. I believe it was meant to match the EC9 3283 model, seeing as its model number is 3235. I guess that’s a pro in the EC9’s direction.
It is lighter than the EC9, weighing only 17.2 ounces. It is 6 inches in length, .9 inches in width, and 4.5 inches in height. It has white 3-dot sight. It is made out of the same material as that of the EC9, except for the finish. The LC9 has a blued finish.
The trigger comes with a firing pin block. This makes me think of the Glock Safe Trigger System. Good to see it in another gun, though I know it is different from the three mechanisms in the Glock. Still, trigger safety is so important. I’ve seen too many accidents happen because of gun triggers.
When it comes to size, reviews have nothing to say. However, one particular review caught my attention when it stated that the frame-mounted safety is reason enough not to add the LC9 to my collection. The reviewer compared it to a condom with a small hole. Agraphic, but accurate. Because of this one punishing review, I’m having second thoughts about purchasing an LC9.
Pros and Cons
The pros of the LC9 are:
- Locking device included in every purchase; and
- Forty pages of the safety manual. I find this very helpful. It contains a complete rundown of the gun, from its components to its maintenance.
The cons, however, are as follows:
- No model to rival the latest EC9 model; and
- That one punishing review.
Being a much more improved version of the LC9, it is safer to choose the Essential Compact 9 mm. However, I might hold back on the newest model and opt for one of the turquoise-colored variety. It is also much cheaper than the outdated LC9. So for those reasons, I would choose the EC9.
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Ruger EC9 vs LC9 Comparison
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We analyzed 10 forum threads, researched 16 sources, evaluated 36 reviews and spent 13+ hours on our analysis.
Being a much more improved version of the LC9, it is safer to choose the Essential Compact 9 mm. However, I might..