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Review: Ruger MAX-9

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Modern Ruger semi-automatic pistols, and to that group I shall include the just-introduced MAX-9, don’t quite fall into the late Rodney Dangerfield’s “I don’t get no respect” category, but I think it is fair to say that they do not receive the full faith and credit they deserve.

While Ruger has its fans, and I count myself among them along with the NRA-affiliated Ruger Collectors Ass’n, the company’s pistols don’t have legions of “fan boys” eagerly willing to gobble up and gush over even the most minor variation with gusto. No, Ruger semi-automatic pistols, all made in the USA, of course, actually need to compete on the bases of features and price. Often when Ruger enters a category, its actual price will be lower than that of competitive designs, and that is based typically upon volume and manufacturing efficiency. In case you were wondering, that efficiency also occurs as Ruger’s engineers are designing the guns to be manufactured. When you make a lot of things very well—which might as well be plastered above the door on your way into a Ruger factory—you can afford to keep the price competitive.

Such is the case with the new MAX-9, which delivers the en vogue increased capacity of a 10- or 12-round magazine in a gun that is still small and light enough to be carried in a pocket—albeit a man-size pocket.

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