Woo boy trends come and go in the gun industry, and one currently ‘in’ is the subgun. A subgun is a really big pistol that resembles an SMG of sorts. Guns like the MPX, the Scorpion, and various MP5s, AR 15s, etc. Well, one of the newest subguns is the Ruger PC Charger. It’s the subgun derivative of the newly famous Ruger PC Carbine. Charger in Ruger language is a pistol variant of a rifle. The Ruger PC Charger keeps all of the best parts of the PC Carbine, but it just shrinks it a bit.
Ruger PC Charger – Specs and Features
How much did they shrink the Ruger PC Carbine? Well, the barrel went from 16.12 inches to 6.5 inches. Obviously, the gun gets a lot lighter as well, with the weight dropping to a pleasant 5.2 pounds. The overall length of the gun is only 16.5 inches.
There are lots of different stock setups and chassis systems for the Ruger PC Carbine, but the Charger only comes in a glass-filled polymer chassis that’s a bit more ‘tactical’ than the average Carbine stock. The charger sports a small M-LOK handguard which is made from metal with just a few slots. It’s enough to mount a light or whatever other small accessory you’d like.
The PC Charger comes without optics or sights but is optic’s ready. A long-scope rail covers the top of the receiver. It’s obviously a natural host for a red dot. Speaking of being a host, the barrel has a 1/2×28 threading that makes it easy to attach a suppressor or muzzle device.
Ruger made a wise move with the PC Charger and Carbine series. Their previous PCC utilized Ruger magazines, and that was it. The Carbine and Charger utilize the Security 9 pattern magazine but also come with a replaceable mag well. This magwell allows you to use the affordable and available Glock 9mm magazines. This opens you up to extended magazines, aftermarket mags, and more.
It was a wise move that was also probably a well-planned financial move. I wouldn’t have purchased the PC Charger if I was stuck with using Ruger’s 17 round 9mm magazines. Give me a 33 round Glock magazine any day.
Take It Down
The Ruger PC Charger is already a small and handy little gun, but it breaks down to an even smaller platform. The barrel pops off in seconds, giving you a take-down subgun. It makes the package smaller, and if you equip the PC Charger with a suppressor, then it becomes super handy. You can make the PC Charger portable without having to remove your suppressor.
Taking it down requires you to lock the bolt to the rear, pull and tab, twist, and remove. That’s all there is to it. This makes it really easy to carry the Charger in a small, discreet bag or easy to lock into a small safe.
Ergonomics of the PC Charger
This cute little fella is a sweet little gun with awesome ergonomics. The rear grip is AR-style and can be replaced with whatever AR grip you choose. The front of the weapon has a handstop that’s a welcome safety feature. It’s light and handy, and even without a brace, it’s easy to fire.
Adding a brace isn’t an issue and can be done quite quickly. The rear of the gun has a 1913 mount that makes attachment easy. I used the SB1913, but numerous braces exist that comply with the 1913 rail. The triangle folder from SB tactical might be my next option.
The magazine release and charging handle can swap sides. I moved the charging handle to the left side since I’m a right-hander but left the mag release as is. The magazine release is massive and easy to use. The charging handle is also fairly large and easy to engage. The safety is a simple cross bolt, no different than the safety on the 10/22.
To The Range
I topped the optic with a Holosun AEMS, filled up a few 33 round ETS magazines, and hit the range with a purpose. I set up some man-sized targets and intended to spend my day shooting a few different drills. After a quick zero, I started at 25 yards and fired some of my favorite Marine Corps drills.
This includes snap headshots, failure to stop drills, box drills, and a multitude of position changes on the fly. The little gun barked and grunted on command without dispute. Steering it from target to target was a nonissue. You expect stiff recoil from a blowback gun, not a ton, but more than a 9mm should deliver.
Ruger uses a dead blow-action that uses a tungsten weight to restrict the travel of the bolt and soften recoil while retaining reliability. This uses a tungsten weight that moves both rearward and forward slightly to deaden the blow. I can say it works rather well, and the felt recoil is very mild.
Muzzle rise is predictably minimal in a gun this big and heavy. It’s small for a gun in general but quite large for a pistol. A muzzle device might tame it a little more should you really wanna go fast.
The trigger is AR-like, and that’s a good thing. It’s a crisp pull and a short amount of take-up before you get that nice solid ‘bang.’ It’s handy and helps the gun with accuracy. Speaking off, I set up a nice steel IPSC target and walked the gun back to 50 and even 75 yards and got consistent rings on steel.
The AEMS’ reticle made it easy to compensate for drop and allowed me to figure it out quickly. My IPSC target has a 6-inch plate in the center that’s separate from the main target. I was even able to keep that thing ringing thanks to the AEMS and Ruger’s accuracy.
I wanted to see if taking down the barrel and replacing it over and over would create accuracy issues. I removed the barrel, fired a group, and repeated for five total groups each of three rounds. If accuracy is impeded, I couldn’t tell. Maybe if this was a precision weapon at 500 yards, but for a subgun at 25 yards, it isn’t an issue.
On top of being accurate, reloading is also fast. The magwell is huge and easy to shove a mag into on the fly. The LRBHO helps a fair bit, as does the massive charging handle. It all comes together to make reloading easy and intuitive.
The Ruger PC Charger has proven to be a reliable, accurate, ergonomic, and just plain fun gun. The little guy was a bit of a surprise when it premiered, but I appreciate surprises. The PC Charger has become one of my favorite subguns. Now I need the ATF to approve my can so I can have a suppressed tiny take-down gun.