I’ve always been somewhat of a generalist. A jack of all trades, though perhaps a master of none. My rifle of choice reflects that sentiment: the versatile Marlin 1894C in .357 Magnum. With .38 wad cutters it can take squirrels cleanly and with Buffalo Bore 180 hardcasts a black bear (the biggest baddie in Missouri, unless you count cougars) would have a bad day. So when searching for my ideal carry pistol one would think I would go with revolver to match the rifle . . .
Well, I have a S&W Model 19 for that, so I decided on an autoloader. I also wanted to try IDPA competition in addition to concealed carry. Off to the LGS to try on a few. GLOCK had the reputation, but was too blocky. Taurus just didn’t fit. Kahr was excellent, but not enough capacity for IDPA (this was pre-CCP class). Others were fondled and put back. Then, I picked up the then-new Ruger SR9c. Yes, this one was just right. Though a California Special, with more safeties than an infant car seat, the grip was comfy and it pointed so naturally that she went home with me.
Removal of the mag disconnect was the first mod. At about 2000 rounds I began to experience the occasional light primer strikes, but it only seemed to occur with Winchester Wally World White Box. Ruger had an upgraded striker spring available if I sent in the slide, but I went the aftermarket route and installed a Galloway Precision striker spring, return spring, and polished plunger and striker indicator. Five hundred rounds and a few matches since then with no light strikes and a smoother, albeit slightly heavier trigger pull.
Perhaps the coolest thing is I get to compete with the gun I carry. It may give up some long range precision to the full size guns, but it often rides in a DeSantis SOF-TUCK IWB holster for matches which gives me more confidence when carrying the same setup.
Bottom line: the little Ruger is a reliable companion with a balance of firepower, “concealability,” and fit and finish to make it “just right.” Goldilocks would be proud.