Ruger’s new-ish Mark IV .22 has been a huge hit. And why not? It has all the best features of Ruger’s venerable Mark series without the Rube Goldberg takedown process. Thanks to its one button takedown design, you no longer have to study a YouTube video to clean your Mark IV like you did its forebears. But Ruger has apparently identified a problem with the gun’s safety…enough of a problem that the company has issued a safety recall.

SOUTHPORT, Conn. — Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (RGR) announced that it is recalling all Mark IV pistols (including 22/45models) manufactured prior to June 1, 2017. Ruger recently discovered that the pistols have the potential to discharge unintentionally if the safety is not utilized correctly. In particular, if the trigger is pulled while the safety lever is midway between the “safe” and “fire” positions (that is, the safety is not fully engaged or fully disengaged), the pistol may not fire when the trigger is pulled. However, if the trigger is released and the safety lever is then moved from the mid position to the “fire” position, the pistol may fire at that time.

Although only a small percentage of Mark IV pistols appear to be affected and the Company is not aware of any injuries, Ruger is firmly committed to safety and would like to retrofit all potentially affected pistols with an updated safety mechanism.

As a responsible manufacturer, Ruger wants to make its customers aware of this FREE safety upgrade. All Mark IV pistols with serial numbers beginning with “401” (2017 models) or “WBR” (2016 models) are subject to the recall. Mark IV owners should visit the Mark IV Recall website at Ruger.com/MarkIVRecall to look up the serial number of their Mark IV and verify if it is subject to the recall, sign up for the recall, and obtain additional information.

The new parts are being built and Ruger will retrofit Mark IV pistols on a first-come, first-served basis. When Ruger is ready to retrofit a consumer’s pistol, a prepaid USPS box with a shipping label and detailed packaging and shipping instructions will be sent to the consumer. The consumer should return only the grip frame assembly to Ruger. Ruger will install the updated safety mechanism, and return the grip frame assembly, free of charge. All retrofitted grip frame assemblies will be returned with a free magazine as a “thank you” for consumers’ patience and cooperation. The Company will make every effort to return each pistol within one week of the day it arrives at Ruger.

Ruger strongly recommends that consumers not use their Mark IV pistols until the safety retrofit has been installed.

About Sturm, Ruger & Co., Inc.

Sturm, Ruger & Co., Inc. is one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of rugged, reliable firearms for the commercial sporting market. As a full-line manufacturer of American-made firearms, Ruger offers consumers over 400 variations of more than 30 product lines. For more than 60 years, Ruger has been a model of corporate and community responsibility. Our motto, “Arms Makers for Responsible Citizens®,” echoes the importance of these principles as we work hard to deliver quality and innovative firearms.

54 Responses to Ruger Recalls Mark IV .22 Pistols

  1. Once again it seems best to let the new models age in the gun shop until the Beta testing is complete.

    • I’ve been waiting to upgrade from a cap and ball revolver until these newfangled metallic cartridges come out of Beta.

    • To be fair, how often is it that a new model has teething issues? I can think of the ACR, Glock gen 4 and this? The vast majority seem to be okay as long as they’re not coming from China. There’s a lot more confidence in a generational design, especially the fourth of it’s kind, especially since it’s been almost 70 years since it was first introduced, especially since it’s from a company that’s generally known for it’s over-built, rugged reliability. So it’s kind of hard to blame people jumping on the Ruger Mark IV bandwagon, I know I was itching to as well.

      That being said, those factors make it all the more surprising that this issue got past Ruger. But if you read the description on why they’re recalling (put safety halfway on, pull trigger, put safety to fire then release trigger and it’ll discharge) it’s a pretty rare circumstance you’d run into this flaw unintentionally.

      Then again, there are people that throw fits over take-down procedures that require you to pull the trigger to disassemble that also talk about how dry firing is great practice. Go figure.

      • “There’s a lot more confidence in a generational design, especially the fourth of it’s kind, especially since it’s been almost 70 years since it was first introduced,…”

        Except the gun isn’t really a refinement generation, like individual model years in an automobile ‘series’, this is more like a design ‘fork’.

        I’d imagine the internals are substantially different, due to the ‘one button takedown’ mechanism.

        I fully agree its surprising Ruger didn’t catch the fault, as I’d assume Ruger had their employees ‘test drive’ the pre-production models to look for potential failure modes…

      • Well there was the P85 recall, SR9 recall, LCP recall, that was just Ruger, and to be fair some of those probably came out a significant time after release. But I do remember the Springfield XDS having a rough start out of the gate, and then there is the Remington R51.

      • How a the entire line of XDS Springfield Armory pistols recalled a few years ago, or the .380 sw BG recall of the same time frame. I’d say there is ago problem in rushing guns to market before they are fully vetted. I’ve also see a dramatic increase of name brand pistols with defects and flaws that could not have passed QC, though the guns are listed as having done so; including an NAA revolver only partially rifled through (yeah, that target in the box is from that pistol) and a SW BG with a lump of polymer on the interior of the mag catch that prevented a magazine from being latched in or even inserted far enough to feed (sure, they test fired that pistol before it left the factory). How about a new Mossburg 500 that wouldn’t chamber a round or even go into battery because the locking area on the chamber for the bolt hadn’t been milled out, at all (test fired? Uhm, no you didn’t) I’d say it’s a matter of time before someone is hurt and receives a judgement large enough that it changes the current analysis for the big manufacturers. Until then, we beta test, and even function and safety test these guns for them at our cost and peril.

        • Yup, the Walther recall but that gun is a total turd even without the drop safety issue.

      • I used to buy models when they first came out. No more. I owned two Ruger LC9s that had major ‘teething’ issues. My original (DAO) LC9, which was an early model, had a guide rod hole in the front of the slide drilled out of spec. It was too large. One day on the range I had a failure to return to battery and found my recoil spring protruding an inch out the front of that hole. That was a first for me. When we compared mine to a newer gun in the gun counter, we figured out the problem. Ruger took good care of me to their credit. My second LC9 was the LC9s (striker) which I bought as soon as they hit the shelves. The original guide rod design for that model, which is not the same as the DAO LC9, proved faulty and could catch the slide on the way forward and cause a failure to return to battery. Happened on one of my first trips to the range. They redesigned the guide rod with a forcing cone at the muzzle end of the guide rod to prevent this from happening and again took good care of me. Since then, I still like Rugers but have decided not to be a beta tester anymore. I’ll give them a year to work the kinks on any model with a major redesign.

    • Excuse me, Ruger has NEVER been slow about fixing any issues; even if an obscure problem comes up, it is dealt with right now. Now Taurus and Remington, let’s see how long we can drag things out.

      • Even worse, one expects a Ruger recall with their new products. It’s kind of their thing. So much so in fact that it’s not just expected, it’s part of the Ruger experience.

        • Wow, Ruger hater. I don’t know too many manufacturers that haven’t had any recalls on new products. With today’s short concept-to-manufacture cycle times, nobody is going to have years of beta testing to work out any kinks. I like Ruger’s revolvers more than their semi-auto’s myself, but if there is a problem, they take care of it. We can all name many manufacturer’s who don’t address issues as promptly as Ruger. If you’re concerned about recalls, don’t buy a newly released gun. Or car. Or phone. Or anything for that matter.

        • “If you’re concerned about recalls, don’t buy a newly released gun. Or car. Or phone. Or anything for that matter.”

          Well Renner, that is a generally wise and frugal way to live. Like you though, it just so happens that Ruger’s (and Henry’s) customer service is so good that I have no qualms handing them a pass on that rule.

        • Not for me. GP100, functioning perfectly since 1988. P90 doing the same since 1991. My dad’s Security Six has been going strong since 1978. I’ll take any Ruger over any Smith & Wesson because Ruger gives a damn about their customer service and their QC seems a lot tighter. My only Smith, a Bodyguard .380 that’s two years old, has developed a problem with the laser activation switch. S&W hasn’t responded to any of my requests or inquiries about getting it fixed, even at my own expense.

          If you don’t want a Ruger, that’s cool. Just means more for me.

        • For the record, I love Ruger. I have more Rugers than any other make including pistols, revolvers and rifles, bolts, semi autos, wheels, you name it.

          Hater? WTF?

  2. My Mk IV that I just got less than a week ago is going back; I like the fact that Ruger is extremely pro-active about anything to do with safety, unlike at least two other gun companies that I can think of (not counting car manufacture’s and a bunch of others). Even IF there is a slight problem, take care of it quickly and promptly. As Ruger states, they are a ‘responsible manufacture’. We need more of them for many items.

  3. Good on Ruger for “manning up”
    But then as a fan of the company, would expect nothing less

    • And they are throwing in a free magazine for your troubles. I wish I had bought one of these defective ones when I had the chance just so I could send it back for the fix and free goodies. Ruger CS is solid.

      Didn’t Caracal have a recall once? How did that work out?

  4. Kudos to Ruger. Not a fan of everything they produce, but on safety issues they are always “Johnny on the spot.”

  5. From what I understand, simply if you play with the trigger while engaging or disengaging the safety, or they safety is not engaged properly and you play with the trigger, the gun might ‘fire on its own’. So basically another case of ‘if you’re an idiot and have no regard for rules of safe firearms handling, you will get shot or shoot someone else’. 😀

    • Yet Ruger is being proactive about it regardless. That’s why I like them.
      Now, if only they would reduce the size of the billboards they insist on putting on their guns.

    • That’s basically what I was thinking. What I read in that recall is that the gun won’t fire unless you pull the trigger, and it won’t fire if the safety is FULLY engaged. Soooo, unless you’re an idiot, this really isn’t that much of a safety concern. I’m not even sure if I’ll send mine back….although the free magazine might persuade me.

      • I’m sending mine back so I get the upgrade and a free mag, like a win-win. I tested mine with no ammo and really felt it was not an issue for me; Ruger is fixing something that most companies would ignore, stating ‘operator error’ as the issue. I was thinking about an extra mag, now I get one free.

      • This is similar to the Taurus Millennium Pro recall. On those pistols if you pull the trigger halfway and then apply the safety, the trigger can still be pulled rearwards and fire the gun.

        Yeah it’s a safety concern, but I can’t help but wonder who is pulling the trigger while they put the safety on?

        Of course the other problem is that Taurus can’t fix the issue, so people have to hope they can get a replacement G2 MilPro, or a few bucks for their time.

    • Yes, the pistol only goes off when the trigger is depressed. But this is a firearm that a lot of people advocate as a first firearm for new shooters. It is especially important that all of the safety mechanisms work correctly, especially for a new shooter that may not be used to all of the rules and is more likely to make mistakes.

    • Well, imagine using it at the range. One thinks the safety is disengaged and pulls the trigger, nothing happens. He figures out the safety isn’t fully in the “off” position, pushes it down, and the gun goes off.

      That’s a real issue.

  6. I still don’t understand how so many people could have so much trouble taking down a MkI to MkIII and putting it back together.

    As for Ruger: Remember, Ruger explicitly disclaims any written warranty on their firearms due to legal issues with the federal legislation about warranties – this issue goes back a long way with them. Even without any warranty that complies with the idiotic federal laws, Ruger makes good on their products – and has for decades. Just look at the retrofit of safety parts to the three-screw model Blackhawks, et al – way back in the early 70’s. Ruger has always been a stand-up company.

    • A good many people these days have difficulty inflating a tire or checking their oil. Whole industries have sprung up to derive profit from assisting people with things that were basic life skills a generation or so ago. One would think that youtube and other free, instant access tutorials would offset this, but that doesn’t seem to be the larger trend. I find it discouraging, but no longer surprising when I encounter such utter and deplorable lack of knowledge, skills or wherewithal these days.
      What does surprise me is how people are occasionally discomfitted by their lack of acumen or ability, but rather than remedy it, they blame them who brought the deficiency to light, as if identifying the problem and suggesting a solution were somehow an affront to them. I suppose in the age of participation trophies and no child left behind and mainstreaming and masquerading as tolerance an abdication of basic expectations I shouldn’t be suprised. I consider self improvement an opportunity and a duty to self, family and society. Such a quaint and oldfashion notion, since it is well know that such a possition is elitist, ableist, and patently divisive these days.

      I wonder how long it will take before this pretending that abilities and results don’t matter as much as inclusiveness, ‘tolerance’ and intention before we get into real trouble…oh wait, nevermind. I suppose I could start wondering how long before it brings about about general and total collapse of civilization. I predict a change will come before then, and at any rate I’ll expire before the end.

      That said, there is an intrinsic value to refining a design or process towards elegance. All else being equal, simpler is better so to speak.

  7. I’m trying to remember the time long ago when a version 1.0 of a firearm didn’t have a recall or necessary “upgrade.”

    • I’m with you Ralph. I trust old, used guns about as much as new these days: none of them is a ‘gun’ until I’ve seen it feed, fire and repeat enough times to be satisfied. Some of these new ‘guns’ are best test fired from behind a ballistic shield the first few times, then allowed to season for allowed year to await any recalls before it’s carried.

  8. Nope. It’s not worth taking all the Volquartsen goodies out of the frame, replacing the factory stuff, then changing it all back to get a free magazine.
    Besides, I think putting in all that Vq stuff voided any warranty.

      • Mostly because the factory trigger pull feels like I’m dragging a cinderblock down a dirt road, but it also gets rid of that idiotic magazine disconnect “safety”.

        One mans opinion…

        • Second that. The Ruger factory trigger is decent…if compared against the standard of a Hi-Point.

          I would like to know if the new safety lever will be compatible with the Volquartsen sear, or if everyone who spent $120 for the better trigger will now have to pony up more to get a redesigned aftermarket part that works.

  9. and that’s exactly how you handle a minor recall. now from what clown school did Remlin’s execs graduate?

  10. Not really much of a “fault” – this is a snowflake recall.

    If the gun is operated per the instructions all is well. Apply the safety all the way and all is well. Apply the safety half-way and there “may” be a tendency to fire if the gun is mis-manipulated further.

    The vast majority of all other guns with manual safeties will still fire if the safety is only partially engaged.

    On the other hand, I like my Mark I just fine.

  11. All I wanted was a .22 I could silence easily with a muzzle mounted “can”.
    I wanted a Colt Woodsman…
    I got a Ruger that I field stripped once- 10 years ago- and have never fired……

  12. Why recall them? We’ve been told repeatedly that the firearms industry has total immunity from lawsuits.

  13. A few weeks ago, I noticed a minor issue with my Mark IV Bolt. It was so minor, I wasn’t even sure it was an issue. When I spoke with their tech, he gave me instructions on how to deal with it BUT offered to take a look at it “just to make sure” – my choice.

    Since I have other Target .22’s, my Mark IV is at Ruger. (1) I know they will make sure things are right with the bolt and (2) I am first in line for the recalled parts.

    Their customer service is outstanding.

  14. I just received my Mk IV grip frame back from the recall today, 10 days from shipping to receipt back in my hands. Pretty outstanding time IMO! Other than the white “S” on the left side safety lever, nothing appears to have been changed – if the safety is placed in any position more than about 1/3 of its travel out of Safe, the trigger can be pulled and the hammer heard to fall. With the receiver dismounted and looking at the hammer as noted, I see nothing that blocks the hammer unless the safety is all the way in the Safe position.

    Guess I’ll have to call Ruger tomorrow and ask them about it.

  15. I realize that I forgot to add that the condition noted is the only one that this particular grip frame exhibited. I was not able to cause the hammer to fall by pressing the trigger on Safe, releasing the trigger and moving the safety to Fire even before sending it in for the recall.

    • Only ten days out and back including shipping time. Everything seems fine, ran a box of shells thru it last night. Got the free mag that I would have ended up buying anyhow. Absolutely great CS and made it worth your while. I think Ruger is the only company that would have bothered with this recall; really it was mostly operator error and that is what I think Taurus and Remington would have said.

    • Called Ruger today, they referred me to Page 12 of the manual, which states that the pistol is not on safe unless the entire white dot is showing. There being no detents, this will require careful attention when using the Mark IV to ensure that the safety doesn’t creep from the Safe position when handling, holstering or drawing. Not the best design IMO but useable.

      • Like I commented above, just got mine back and everything is fine. The safety positively has a detent feature at both ‘fire and ‘safe’; it can not ‘creep’ if you put it all the way to either position. The travel of the safety is also short, making a half way position one of deliberate error. If someone deliberately tries to defeat a safety by not fully engaging it, what do you expect?

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