.357 Buster? Ruger’s .327 SP101 Delivers Magnum Force & Extra Firepower!

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The SP101 in .327 Federal Magnum delivers impressive power in a petite package—and holds one more round over a .357!

The SP101 in .327 Federal Magnum delivers impressive power in a petite package—and holds one more round over a .357!

The Ruger SP101 has long been a staple for revolver fans. Its combination of a small frame with a full-power chambering in .357 Magnum makes for a compact and potent package. However, in the past it has been limited to five rounds. The addition of the .327 Federal Magnum chambering bumps that up to six.

As a known quantity, the SP101 is a great little revolver. Having been offered in several configurations over the years, the SP101 is currently available in .22 LR, .357 Mag, .327 Fed Mag and 38+P, with 2.25-, 3- and 4.2-inch barrels being offered. It’s also available in double-action/single–action (SA/DA) and double-action-only (DAO). The .327 Fed Mag is only available with the 4.2-inch barrel in DA/SA.

In addition to the impressive power of the .327 round, it also allows the SP101 to pack a full six rounds into the cylinder.

In addition to the impressive power of the .327 round, it also allows the SP101 to pack a full six rounds into the cylinder.

The Ruger SP101 comes with a set of comfortable synthetic grips with a an attractive wood insert with the Ruger logo.

The Ruger SP101 comes with a set of comfortable synthetic grips with an attractive wood insert sporting the Ruger logo. The result is a comfortable and eye-catching feature on the handy little revolver.

The .327 Fed Mag SP101 is an enjoyable gun to shoot. And despite its weight, it feels light on the hip. Drawing and acquiring a flash sight picture is easy with the fiber optic front sight unit. The smooth trigger helps keep your sights on target and recoil is minimal. In fact, it’s much better than the .357 Mag, which seems sharp to me. Shot placement is important to stopping a threat as quickly as possible and the low recoil with this revolver definitely helps.

SPECS

  • CARTRIDGE: .327 Federal Magnum
  • BARREL: 4.20 inches
  • OA LENGTH: 9.12 inches
  • WEIGHT: 29.5 ounces
  • GRIPS: Rubber with wood inserts
  • SIGHTS: Fiber optic front, adjustable rear
  • ACTION: Double-action/single-action
  • FINISH: Stainless steel
  • CAPACITY: 6
  • MSRP: $769

Magnum Faceoff: .327 Versus .357

But this review is as much about the .327 Fed Mag round as it is about the SP101. Many will ask why we need yet another caliber when we already have the .357 Mag. It’s a reasonable question.

When you grow up with a round like the .357 Mag, which has a proven record as a man stopper, the .327 Fed Mag might just seem like the ammo manufacturers are out to make a buck. While there’s always a profit motive in business (that’s what makes all the product choices we enjoy possible) the round actually came from what was seen as a need to increase the capacity of the popular small revolvers. Okay, it’s only one more round, but it’s a 20% increase in firepower over a standard five-round revolver! This is a good example of where more is better, both in more rounds as well as in more choices for the gun owner.

Shown for comparison (from left to right) is a .32 Long, a .32 H&R Mag., a .327 Fed. Mag. and a .357 Mag.

Shown for comparison (from left to right) is a .32 Long, a .32 H&R Mag., a .327 Fed. Mag. and a .357 Mag.

The .327 Federal Magnum cartridge was the result of a collaboration between Ruger and Federal. The idea was to produce a round with similar performance to a .357 Mag but in a size that would allow another round to fit in the same size cylinder as the popular five shot guns. An added benefit was a significant reduction in recoil over the .357. You can also shoot .32 Long and .32 H&R Magnum in it, providing more versatility.

Although they hit the mark with the new round, it didn’t catch on like they thought it would. It was written off by some as a pipsqueak round who did not fully understand the ballistics. The .327 is .045-inch smaller (its diameter is .312) than a .357 bullet. That’s about the thickness of a matchbook cover. While the .327 does fire smaller bullets, they exit the gun at higher velocities (on average, roughly 100 to 200 feet per second faster, give or take). At higher speeds they also expand better than .357 Mag projectiles.

Comparable Stopping Power + Extra Round

So how does that play out in stopping power? The primary variables of course are velocity, bullet weight and frontal area. Simple enough. Of course there are other variables such as mushrooming, tumbling, etc, but let’s stay with this. It’ll give us a fair idea of how the two rounds compare.

Neil Smith developed a formula for predicting how a handgun round would perform against live targets and it has an enthusiastic following. He calls the effectiveness of a round “efficacy” and calculates it by multiplying the energy in foot pounds by the cross-sectional area in square inches. (Don’t worry. You won’t have to get out your calculator. Just wanted you to know where it came from.) Bill St. Clair provides a handy calculator function based on Neil’s formula on his site, here. It’s a good way to compare different cartridges.

Screen Shot 2016-06-08 at 5.06.02 PM

I tried to use the most common and most comparable loads so the results are real world. As you can see, in the two lightest bullet weights performance is neck-and-neck. The higher muzzle velocity of the .327 (+176 & +93) compensates for the lighter bullet weights. It isn’t until you get to the 158-grain Federal load that the .357 Mag shows a discernable difference. And that’s comparing them both out of a 4-inch barrel.

Real World Cases Against Live Threats

Okay, that’s the numbers. How do they compare in the real world against human threats? The following is from An Alternative Look at Handgun Stopping Power by Greg Ellifritz. Greg is a 20-year veteran police officer in central Ohio. He’s the president of Active Response Training and an adjunct instructor for the Ohio Peace Officer’s Training Academy. In other words, he’s been around the block. He gathered information on as many shootings as he could to increase the accuracy of his conclusions (http://csi-forensicfollies.blogspot.com/2013/07/an-alternate-look-at-handgun-stopping.html).

Because the .327 Fed Mag is such a new round (2007), it’s not in his compilation of observed shootings. However, the .32 ACP/.32 Long is. Since the .327 is much more powerful, we can draw some conclusions based on the .32 ACP/Long performance. Greg wanted to know things like how many shots did it take to incapacitate an assailant? How many one-shot stops for each caliber? How many hits were fatal? These are documented results. Anything can happen in a small sample, but the larger the sample becomes, the more accurate the data. Here’s what he learned:

Ellifritz_Incapacitation

 

Ellifritz_Rnds_to_Incap

Surprised? Even the lowly .32 Long held its own. The .327 Fed Mag should do much better.

Again. Let me repeat that this study consisted of a limited number of recent shootings. Only 25 for the .32, while there were 106 for the .357. But it’s still enough to get an idea of relative performance.

We sometimes forget just how powerful modern guns are. Even the wimpy .22 LR performed well. Most would never consider that for a self-defense gun, but let’s put it in perspective.

A four-pound hammer swung overhead delivers a blow of about 202 ft. lbs. That’s enough to crush a skull. An Aguila Super Max 30-grain .22 LR delivers 204 ft. lbs. Yeah, one’s big and heavy and one’s small and light, but they’ll both put your lights out for good. I hope the above dispels any notion that the .327 Fed Mag is a wimpy cartridge.

The .327 Finds a Nice Home

The SP101 in .327 Fed. Mag. sports a high-visibility. fiber-optic front sight. Note the full underlug of the revolver.

The SP101 in .327 Fed. Mag. sports a high-visibility, fiber-optic front sight. Note the full underlug of the barrel.

The green fiber optic front sight works in concert with the SP101s adjustable black rear sight unit.

The green fiber optic front sight works in concert with the SP101’s adjustable black rear sight unit.

Back to the Ruger SP101. It’s a rock solid gun in stainless steel with a fiber optic light tube in the front sight blade and an adjustable rear sight. With the 4.2-inch barrel, it’s well balanced and points naturally. The trigger (which broke at 10 pounds, 15 ounces DA and 5 pounds, 5 ounces SA on my test gun) is smooth right out of the box. There was some stacking DA with a noticeable wall just before the break, which made staging the trigger for slow fire a breeze. In SA, it’s crisp and light.

At the range I fired from a standing position offhand with both two-hand and one-hand grips. From seven yards it was easy to keep five rounds of .32 Long, .32 H&R Magnum and .327 Fed Mag in about a 1-inch circle. Of course, that 6th round took me to 2 inches. At ten yards that opened up to double the size. Firing quickly, DA, from seven yards resulted in a spread of 3 3/8 inches. A one-handed speed drill from seven yards resulted in 12 rounds in a 5½-inch group, my widest shot 2½ inches from the bull. This is supposed to be a trail/home defense gun, but I wouldn’t hesitate to carry it concealed. It isn’t any bigger than my 1911.

Recoil was mild with the .32 Long in the SP101. It would make for a great plinking and target practice round.

Recoil was mild with the .32 Long in the SP101. It would make for a great plinking and target practice round. This group was shot at 7 yards.

The 32 H&R Magnum has enough punch for close self-defense work as well as small game hunting. It shot quite well in the SP101.

The 32 H&R Magnum has enough punch for close self-defense work as well as small game hunting. It shot quite well in the SP101 at 7 yards.

In the author's opinion, the .327 Federal Magnum round hits hard enough for game up to coyote, mountain lion, and any other medium sized thin-skinned animal.

The SP101 shot well with .327 Federal Magnum, and the author thinks it hits hard enough for game up to coyote, mountain lion, and any other medium-sized, thin-skinned animal.

The author tested the .327 with a range of brands and bullet weights and got very good results.

The author tested the .327 with a range of brands and bullet weights and got very good results.

You Get What You Pay For

MSRP is $769 with a street price in the $650-700 range. The addition of the .327 Fed Mag to the SP101 line makes a great gun even better. It delivers six rounds in the cylinder with a hard-hitting cartridge. Ammo is a little hard to get, but is readily available online. It generally takes decades for a new cartridge to catch on, and I think the .327 Fed Mag will eventually be as popular as it deserves to be. Take advantage of the lower recoil in a very effective round today. I am. I just bought my own SP101 in 327 Fed Mag. It’s that good.

Ammo resources:

To learn more, visit http://ruger.com/.

To purchase on GunsAmerica.com, go to https://www.gunsamerica.com/Search.aspx?T=ruger%20sp101%20327%20fed%20mag.

{ 35 comments… add one }
  • Haenry February 26, 2017, 4:33 pm

    327 Magnum factory ammo is really hot. It’s somewhere in the 45,000 psi range and probably more since it’s very difficult to duplicate this performance with handloads without exceeding 45,000 psi.
    Most contemporary 357 Magnum ammo is loaded very weak at around 33,000 psi. It used to be much hotter. You can still load it yourself to these levels or buy boutique ammo and as long as you have a strong revolver lile the SP101 it wont be a problem.
    Point being in a real applles to apples comparison the 357 is much more powerful than the 327. I like the 327 it’s a good round, but it can’t do anything the 7.62×25 and 30 carbine rounds can’t do better. I’d love to see a modern 7.62×25 pistol.

    • Charles August 17, 2017, 1:00 pm

      “I like the 327 it’s a good round, but it can’t do anything the 7.62×25 and 30 carbine rounds can’t do better.”

      I don’t know of any DA revolvers in either of those two calibers -? Much less semi-compact revolvers like the SP101. Yes, that’s discussing the .327 but again, the .327 was a Caliber & Gun To Shoot It collaboration. And, any gun that can shoot the .327 can also shoot the .32 H&R, .32 S&W Long and .32ACP. I don’t know of any guns that shoot the .30 Carbine or 7.62X25 that can do that. Again, it might be said that’s a characteristic of the GUNS not the caliber/round…but it’s a characteristic of guns that shoot the .327 that is NOT shared by guns that shoot the .30 Carbine or 7.62×25.

      And being able to ‘load up’ or ‘load down’ depending on the intended usage IS a useful feature.

      Otherwise, if someone doesn’t want to buy a .327, don’t. (shrug) Running it down on the basis of “Well, other calibers already do that.” is non sequitur. I mean, it’s not like every other caliber out there fills a need that absolutely cannot be met by some other caliber.

  • Dwight R January 2, 2017, 10:55 am

    I have the 4 inch SP101 in 357 mag and 327 mag, the 327 has less recoil and is a little bit more accurate than the 357. I have replaced the grips on the 327 with Hogue grips and the 357 with Pachmire, both grips eliminated the problems I had with a sore middle finger that rests behind the trigger guard. I have found that the Pachmire grips reduce the recoil of the 357 substantially, in fact my felt recoil is about the same or maybe a little less than the 327 and the control I get is much better. I am going to keep both sets of grips on the guns so that I can identify which gun is which quickly. I don’t think there is much of a chance of accidentally firing the wrong cartridge in the wrong gun since the 327 falls through the 357 cylinder and of course the 357 will not fit in the 327 but at least if I am fumbling around in the dark I will know which shells to pick up. I mostly use the guns as home protection and in the vehicles I have. They are a little large for Concealed carry but I shoot about 200 rounds a month with both guns and am very confident in the fact that I will hit what I aim at if the need ever comes out to ranges of at least fifty yards especially with the 327 since it shoots with a little less drop. I have always had a 357 for the last 45 years but if I had to give one of them up it would be the 357. I have always shot Ruger revolvers and have never had to have one repaired, I have had these guns for about 2 years and I suspect they will give me good service also.

  • PJ November 28, 2016, 12:28 am

    I have the tested gun. I really like the cartridge (I do reload), and wish it were doing better in the market. No I don’t need another cartridge but already had the dies, so… The gun is OK, but I am not a real fan of Ruger handguns; I prefer S&W. It’s OK for a defense gun but the DA trigger does not thrill me. Probably a lot more shootable than the .357 version though. I like the 100gr XTP bullet.

    One thing I did to improve the gun was replace the grip (with a Pachmyer, IIRC). Didn’t care for the stock grip, and the gun’s looks were improved too.

  • John August 16, 2016, 10:10 am

    I own both 4.2″ models one in .357 and the other in .22 lr. Both are excellent. The .357 loaded with 38spl is one of the best beginners/training guns around, with .357 loads it is a handful, but .38+P is fine. I have been waiting to get my hands on a .327 model but have not seen them in any stores yet and my dealer has them back ordered. .32 caliber guns are accurate and fun to shoot, not to mention cheap to reload. I have the Ruger single 7 in .327 and its a tack driver. Like others a lever action in this caliber would be great or how about a 8 shot Taurus Circuit Judge!

  • REM1875 August 6, 2016, 6:44 pm

    I sure wish marlin or henry would make a lever gun for the 327 Fed Mag.

    • Charles August 17, 2017, 1:24 pm

      Henry is making 4 lever actions in .327; two in brass, two in steel.

  • REM1875 August 6, 2016, 6:37 pm

    I have owned one of most 327 ever made. I like the round, I like it a heck of a lot. This was my experience.

    When you introduce a new round in the middle of a war make sure you manufacture enough of those rounds to make both gun and rounds available.
    When the only rounds available come 20 to a box for a small fortune you can bet there will be a disaster ahead.
    And when most stores do not even carry those?
    And when even the expensive 20 round boxes with fancy bullets dry up?
    And the only brass available to reload was what you emptied out of those expensive 20 round boxes?
    Them rare and irreplaceable 20 round boxes and that price were not exactly conducive to plinking.
    Friends out plinking is where a lot of word of mouth and hands on experience sell guns and ya have to be a pretty special friend to justify plinking with them pricey and soon irreplaceable 20 round boxes, they are usually reserved for test firing and keeping the rest for self defense.

    Lot of guns from a lots companies and no ammo lead to the current situation, almost no guns but now the ammo is available.
    Ruger, Charter Arms, S&W, Taurus and Freedom Arms all made 327 and not one of those made in the beginning other than Freedom arms is still made. Yes ruger has some new models brought out recently but the first one they made are all discontinued.
    Federal had a choice and when they decided not to make the cheaper 50 round boxes or even the costly 20 rd boxes of ammo- they killed the round.

    A salute to starline brass for final making brass for reloading available, whether it was a legality with federal’s new cartridge or not they were too late the hero.

    Want proof? Try and find a used 327 fed for sale even those ruger is now making do not turn up that often.

  • OFBG June 14, 2016, 2:43 pm

    I bought a 3-inch SP101 some years ago for a carry gun. If I were shopping now I would probably lean towards an LCR in .327 but still a 3-inch. I do have a 4-inch SP-101 in .22LR and it it is great for plinking and range practice as the grip and trigger feel is pretty the same as for the .357 SP101, To my mind, however, a 4-inch barrel on a small-frame carry gun kind of defeats the purpose, as does that tall fiber-optic front sight on the gun in the article.

  • EaglesEye June 13, 2016, 4:52 pm

    Great round, whether you want it or need it is a personal choice, of course. As for the SP101, also a nice piece. I was very lucky about 5 years ago and purchased a Ruger “GP100″ 4.2” barrel for this .327 Fed Mag. It has a “7” round cylinder. The extra size and weight make discharging the “.327” an amazingly calm and controllable round in the big GP100 revolver. I have little doubt that the SP101 will be the perfect vehicle to deliver the “.327” Fed Mag. A much better suited caliber for the lighter and smaller SP101 than the “.357” Mag. As far as the cost of factory rounds is concerned, seriously, are a few boxes of ammo gonna break your bank? Remember when you needed or wanted big power in a motor vehicle you had to purchase a “BIG” heavy vehicle. Well, that strict requirement no longer exists. You can get big power in a small package nowadays. Technology has advanced. Big may longer be better? But, big power in a well handling package, now that’s real performance! – – Never Stop Being Prepared – –

  • shrugger June 13, 2016, 4:34 pm

    I’m hoping someone will eventually shoehorn 10 rounds of .327 into a wheel gun. Now THAT would be awesome!

  • Shawn Dodson June 13, 2016, 11:57 am

    BS + mathematics = BS. Any attempt to calculate the ability of a given load to quickly stop danger is BS. What organs the bullet hits and how much damage it produces in these organs determines efficacy. Placement + penetration = effectiveness. The bullet must damage vitals critical to immediate survival to be rapidly effective.

  • Ken June 13, 2016, 11:03 am

    Back in around 1983 I bought a new SS Ruger Security Six 4″ 357 6 shot with adjustable sights.
    One day while we were working around the farm a rabbit jumped up and took off straight away from us.
    I pulled out the 357 and leveled off and squeezed … 158gr SJHP right up the cotton ball.
    Stepped off 80 yards.
    Rabbit was almost completely split in half.
    Nuff said.

  • Vanns40 June 13, 2016, 10:47 am

    What was the size of the study? Oh small. That’s not very definitive. Based on that alone logic dictates the entire conversation (regarding the study) be discarded. Further, other, more, shall we say, independent, studies have rated the 327 about with 9mm in a good defensive round.

    Finally price. 357 brass target rounds are around $.27 per round, steel case even lower. The cheapest 327? Starts at $.43 per round for target and keeps on going.

    This article sounds like a nice puff piece promoting the this gun and this round but when you get into the weeds it’s not quite as rosey a picture.

  • Wayne Addison June 13, 2016, 10:31 am

    I really wanted this gun as either the GP 100 or SP 101 . I was sold on all that is had to offer. But find ammo at a reasonable price or brass which to my surprise was available but who makes the reload dies for .327??????? It was just one issue after another. It is sad as this could rock as a great little revolver but no one seems to be interested in providing ammo, dies, brass etc.

    • Andrew N. June 13, 2016, 11:47 am

      RCBS, LEE, and LYMAN all make dies for reloading the .327 Federal Magnum. I already reload it, and it works just fine. Some are listed as 32 H&R or 32 S&W Long, but a little research shows that they work just fine for the .327. I have used both the RCBS and LEE dies. I have the Single Seven from Ruger for the 327, and it shots ANY .32, including 32 ACP and 32 S&W Short as well as those listed in the article. Love the gun and reduced recoil, as well as the speed of the 327 round.

      • John August 16, 2016, 10:22 am

        I too have a Single Seven and shooting .32ACP is a hoot, less recoil than a .22 LR. I have shot ever thing in this gun and it shoots them all accurately. I see and buy the American Eagle 50 round boxes of .327 often they are no more expensive than other center fire ammo that isn’t ball ammo. The biggest problem was this was introduced just before the ammo shortage started so it did not have a chance to make a splash in the market.

    • JPLen January 4, 2017, 10:06 am

      I just use my 32 H&R Mag. Carbide Dies to resize and reload cases… Works perfectly and several thousand rounds have funneled through my 4” Ruger GP100 and 3″ Taurus .327 Mag. as verifiable proof that it does work. Starline Brass is readily available at reasonable prices, so I purchased 300 rounds which should keep me going for quite a few years. Also found a few once fired boxes at a local gun show which added @ 100 more rounds to my collection… Prior to purchasing that brass I re-loaded 32 H&R brass by working up loads in small increments until I eventually developed my own .32 H&R +P load which was only slightly slower by only @ 90-100fps on my chronograph. I will not pass this loading info on because of legal obligations but if one knows what they are doing and proceeds with extreme caution, those loads are reliable and almost as hard hitting as factory .327 federal mag loads.

  • Rod June 13, 2016, 10:09 am

    The numbers you’re reporting from the ballistic calculator are actually E*SD, which is biased toward smaller bullets. The raw Efficacy values actually favor the 357 by a significant margin.

  • Bob June 13, 2016, 9:37 am

    The 327 is so versatle,i have one. I handload ,the 327 with 85 gr xtp shoot flat and fast .The beauty of the 327 is being able to shoot,32 acp,32long,32h&r and 327 from the same weapon.I load a 100 gr.lead round nose in 32 acp ,the revolver is a tack driver.Its one of my favorite to teach someone how to shoot.if you dont want to handload you can shoot any of the other cartridges and have ,mild to wild.Have a great day!

  • Bill O'Connor June 13, 2016, 9:33 am

    This reminds me so much of the .41 mag vs. .44 mag situation. I love my .41 mag, it’s less punishing to shoot, gives
    results so close to .44 mag that it’s hard to reconcile, few if any new guns are chambered for .41, it is harder to find brass and the selection of bullets is smaller. Of course, if that’s you criteria, buy 9mm.
    The biggest surprise of the graphs is how well the .380 does.

  • Rollin Shultz June 13, 2016, 9:30 am

    The data in chart #2 appear to be affected by the sheer number of samples, hence the reason the 9mm and .40 have the highest numbers. This means just the fact there are so many more of those guns in use has affected the data and makes it likely the test is not accurate. When looking at the .44 mag column, it is hard to imagine how it could be so low in comparison to the others. Even if the assailant was wearing a vest I would expect a .44 mag to incapacitate 100% of the time.
    In chart #1 the .22 and .32 appear to be very close to the rifle data and it is likely though unspecified those calibers were mostly rifle data, which un-equally weights the results.

  • Spartacus1239 June 13, 2016, 9:15 am

    I have all 3 of the SP101 4″ pistols. I REALLY like the 327 as I had a few 32mag revolvers in the past and have a lot of brass etc. The ONLY down fall of the 37 is getting factory ammo. It is such a great round, but if you don’t reload, stay away from it and go with the .357.

    The 22LR 4″ SP101 is hands down one of my favorite 22 revolvers, perfect woods walking gun
    The 357 SP101 4″ Is on my hip out in the field when deer or boar hunting.
    The 327 gets a lot of 32 Long and 32 magnum put trough it for medium fur bearing game. I would not hesitate to us this as a house gun for defense, The 37 lends itself very well for this.

  • Griffendad June 13, 2016, 9:11 am

    My S&W has 7 rounds in .357 and now they’re 8 round revolvers. Interesting round but sounds short lived. Guess Ruger has money to burn, no wonder the stock is slipping.

  • Jackpine June 13, 2016, 7:17 am

    Forget the pistol, I’m stunned by those data. The .22 outperformed the .45ACP? The .25 beats out the .40S&W and the 9mm?

    How do we interpret this? Pistoleros using small calibers take time to aim?

    • Ken June 13, 2016, 12:20 pm

      22 did a great job, with these statistics, but statistics don’t tell you why..
      22’s will be better represented because they are the single most common caliber, 22’s are likely to be more be accurate, your ears aren’t blown out with the first shot, recoil will not be much of a factor, nor muzzle blast. 22’s have been found to penatrate more than most would think, but do little adjacent damage, hence, some ignore the puncture that bleeds them out with little pain.
      9th seemed to be dismal, but is the round the problem? How many thugs with no knowledge or training pull a 9th trigger?

  • John S June 13, 2016, 6:52 am

    OK, it’s cool and all that, but I already have two .357 Magnum revolvers in my gun cabinet, along with several more handguns that shoot .22 .380, 9mm and .45 ACP. Why do I NEED to buy another type/caliber of ammunition? It’s hard enough to keep up with what I already have.

    • Grumpy June 13, 2016, 9:36 am

      As a shooter and casual collector for over 50 years, it’s not what you NEED, it’s what you WANT! One can never have too many of what you enjoy and appreciate.

      thanx,
      Grumpy

    • Charles August 17, 2017, 1:18 pm

      I don’t think the article said anything about you NEEDING to buy another caliber. If you believe you have every gun and every caliber you need or will ever need, why even bother reading an article that was about something other than what you already own-? That said, I seriously doubt you have a 6-shot revolver in .357 that’s as compact and handy as the SP101. My wife doesn’t like to shoot any of our .357 magnum revolvers since the grips are either too large for her hands…or if the grips are small enough for her hands, the recoil is unpleasant (not to mention the muzzle blast). Conversely, she doesn’t mind shooting the SP101 .327 in 3″ or 4″ barrel and she even carries a Ruger LCR in .327 (albeit loaded with .32 H&R Magnum) as her concealed carry. Not slamming your choices; just saying different strokes for different folks. I own more than one .357, .41 and .44 magnum (as well as a plethora of .38) and the .327 became my favorite caliber several years ago for several reasons.

  • Tony John June 13, 2016, 6:43 am

    I have a SP101 in .357 Mag., but I gotta have a.327

  • super x June 13, 2016, 6:29 am

    I bought a ruger sp 101 when they first came out a few years ago in 327 mag. It has a 3 in barrel on the gun. I have shot it a lot. It is a very accurate rd. The recoil is not as great as a 357 mag and the report is not as wicked as a short barrel 357. It is still loud. I measured the speed with a 100 gr bullet from American Eagle factory load and got around 1500 fps with a 3 in barrel. I reload for this round and I am not pleased with not more information for this great round than what is available. The gun writers did not do this round justice. I would not be afraid at all to use this round as a defensive round.

  • Will Drider June 8, 2016, 10:31 pm

    I enjoyed the article but there is disparities in several points. If we put any value in the not well referenced snapshot of actual shooting results, it is conflict with other widely covered documents and tips the data from what is well accepted by caliber. Accuracy with the 4 inch was okay but as mentioned your in 1911 size with 8+1! Was not a selling point 6 rounds in the space of 5?

    Wife has a Ruger SP101 DAO 357, I like it too. Can’t say there are any selling points for the .327 mag that interest me.

    • Charles August 17, 2017, 1:32 pm

      “Accuracy with the 4 inch was okay but as mentioned your in 1911 size with 8+1! Was not a selling point 6 rounds in the space of 5?”

      Not sure what you’re trying to say or what your question is -? Are you saying that -if a selling point (of the SP101 in .327) is more rounds (than other revolvers in .357)- then why not just get a 1911 (in .45acp) since they’re about the same size?

      If so, I’ll say that not everybody likes an automatic (much less the 1911) especially for concealed carry…and that’s another argument that’s been beaten to death literally hundreds (if not thousands) of times over the last hundred years.

  • SuperG June 8, 2016, 12:21 pm

    .327 on Ammoseek is .44 cents a round. .357 is .23 cents a round. Hmm, what a tough decision.

    • Mark N. June 9, 2016, 3:32 am

      One more round, about the same power as a 125 gr .357, less recoil, meaning more shots on target and more practice time, and less expensive .32 cal rounds to practice with, just as using .38 spl in lieu of .357. I still want one. And the SP 101 is a really nice piece.

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