Despite competition from all sides of the small arms market, Sturm, Ruger & Company has made quite a name for themselves alongside powerhouses Colt, Smith & Wesson and others. Founded in 1949 and based out of Southport, Connecticut, the company has built a long-standing tradition of solidly-made pistols and long guns for military, security, civilian and sporting use around the world. One entry, the Ruger P-series, was marketed from 1985 until 2013 and, despite its stout, bulky appearance, made itself known to be a solid, reliable semi-automatic pistol and a slew of variants followed the base, proven design.
At its core the P-series was another incarnation of John Moses Browning's original recoil-operated, locked breech, tilting barrel action seen in the Colt M1911. The Ruger offering arrived in Single-Action (SA) and Double-Action (DA) forms with ambidextrous manual safeties. The sights (of a 3-dot type) were fixed over the slide with an oversized, side-mounted ejection port seen at the design's midway point. The trigger loop was oblong in its general shape and suitable for gloved firing.
The various models introduced invariably produced various chamberings: 7.65x21mm Parabellum, 9x19mm Parabellum, .40 S&W and .45 ACP. Feeding varied depending on chambering and ranged from 7-, 8-, 10- and 15-round count magazines, these inserted into the base of the pistol grip. Outward finishes on the guns included a blued steel , stainless steel, aluminum alloy, or polymer look.
The P-series eventually found favor with police elements, some military forces, sporting shooters and some civilian markets.