Review: Ruger PC Carbine With GLOCK Magazine

Ruger Carbine with Glock 26 pistol

Talk about brilliant! Ruger deserves a hearty congratulations for designing and offering a GLOCK-magazine fed carbine — that we have been waiting for GLOCK to create.

While a GLOCK design may have looked different, the Ruger PC Carbine fills every need in a basic GLOCK magazine-fed carbine.

As a bonus, thanks to the swappable magwell adapter design, the Ruger PC Carbine also accepts all Ruger and potentially other brand mags as well in the future.

Ruger has done something few companies have ever done outside of the AR-15 market, by designing and offering the Ruger PC Carbine with out-of-the-box functionality with another competing manufacturer’s magazines, along with Ruger’s own SR-series magazines.

The brilliant 10/22-influenced design is everything we could hope for in an inexpensive, reliable and easily serviceable $650 MSRP rifle.

Fit, Feel, Features & Functions

The Ruger PC Carbine rifle will likely retail on the street for just under $600, and I can imagine it easily being one of Ruger’s biggest sellers in 2018.

The Ruger PC Carbine offers fully-ambidextrous controls, shares the 10/22-based trigger design, features a takedown barrel design similar to Ruger’s 10/22-TD rimfire, has a trigger that feels better than any 10/22 factory Ruger trigger I have tried, a warp-free synthetic stock with front picatinny rail and user-configurable spacers similar to the Ruger Scout rifles, integrated top picatinny rail, ambi-configurable controls, fluted barrel with 1/2×28 threaded muzzle, fully-adjustable rear peep/ghost sight, protected scout-style front scout sight, and SR-series & GLOCK 9mm magazine well adapters all included.

That is a mouthful of features for a gun with a street price under $600.

The gun features that apocalypse-surviving rugged Ruger feel at 6.8lbs with the upgraded machining design appearances of being made with the “new Ruger machining capabilities.”

They feature the more refined fit and feel precision and machining finish, like was seen on the Ruger Precision Rifles, that just was not possible on the old Ruger equipment.

The Ruger PC Carbine takedown action is rock solid and looks like a Ruger 10/22-TakeDown and an H&K tri-lugs setup had a baby.

It is solid and super fast to assemble and disassemble.

Disassembled Ruger Carbine with Ruger 1022-TD model
The takedown of the Ruger Carbine is similar to the Ruger 1022-TD model and it is stowable with a full mag.

From a feature perspective, most people would say it is very well appointed.

The front and rear sights are excellent, fast and rugged — all without getting in the way of the typical types of red dots and 1-4 power optics people would attach.

Ruger did not mess around with the Ruger PC Carbine design, milling the entire receiver and integrated a full 1913-spec picatinny rail out of billet aluminum.

The rear sight is precision-adjustable with marked increments of windage and elevation.

Though I have not attempted to swap out an aftermarket 10/22 trigger, the trigger unit appears to be compatible with 10/22 triggers.

Based on the feel of the very good trigger, I probably would not waste the money on an upgrade.

It seems logical, if the 10/22-design trigger is reliably igniting hard-to-detonate .22 LR rounds, then it should be more than sufficient for centerfire rounds.

The trigger and trigger safety should feel familiar to all the Ruger 10/22 rimfire owners, as should the charging handle placement and operation.

The Ruger PC Carbine also features the same bolt lockback and automatic bolt-release feature of the newer Ruger 10/22 rifles.

Operation of the Ruger PC Carbine is also similar to the Ruger 10/22 with a simple dead-blowback design.

Ruger has shortened cycle time and reduced recoil with a tungsten weight inside the bolt.

The Ruger PC Carbine departs from a 10/22-based design with an easily ambi-configurable magazine release and bolt charging handle via a simple 10/22-style disassembly with only two screws.

Some serious design work was done to deliver the elegant simplicity of the magazine and bolt-handle design.

My preference on the configuration was an AK/10/22 bolt-charging location with the magazine-release button on the right-hand side.

I found this to be the fastest reload.

Of note, if you swap to a right-hand magazine release, old Gen 2 non-ambi GLOCK magazines will not work unless you do some Dremel work.

The magazine release is not trigger-finger accessible without releasing the grip, but I found it easy to either slide the support hand back and around the magwell to release the mag or slide the firing hand up while shouldered.

Not a high-speed AR-15 reload process, but it works just fine.

charging handle on the Ruger PC Carbine
Both the charging handle and magazine release are simple ambi-configurable.

Oh, that gloriously brilliant magazine adapter setup.

I can hear it now, half the folks in the design meeting at Ruger are carrying GLOCKs and just whining because the gun only accepted Ruger mags.

Finally, the lead designer says, “Ok, if it will shut you up, we will make the magazine adapter swappable for GLOCKs.” At least that is how I imagine it.

It could have also been the finance guy noting that the most popular pistols on earth are 9mm GLOCKs and noted that Ruger would sell about 20x as many if it also accepted GLOCK mags.

Whatever the reason, Ruger is sure to hit a home run since the only other widely produced non-AR15 GLOCK mag compatible rifle is the Kel-Tec SUB-2000, which is often backordered.

The beauty of the mag-swap design, is that with just a quick disassembly — hit the mag release button — the owner can slide out one magazine adapter and slide in another adapter.

Currently, Ruger includes both GLOCK and Ruger SR-Series magazine adapters in the box with one SR series 10 or 15-round magazine included depending on PC Carbine model chosen.

Ruger offers optional Ruger American magazine adapters as well.

I can certainly imagine that if Ruger does not offer magazine adapter for various other brands of magazines, that the aftermarket accessory manufacturers will have them available very soon.

Due to the design flexibility, the Ruger PC Carbine has the opportunity to grab market share with an inexpensive rifle from SIG, H&K, S&W, GLOCK and many other brand loyalists.

After all, who would not want an accurate little rugged carbine that can be disassembled to fit into a backpack that can shoot from the same mags as a sidearm?

This seems like an automatic win for the LEO, survival and home-defense markets.

Ruger Carbine shown with a custom Ruger 10-22TD
The Ruger Carbine is shown with a custom Ruger 10-22TD. Same great size with 9mm power.

Accuracy & Functionality

Summing up the Ruger PC Carbine, it is a 10/22 that fires 9mm rounds. My FFL dealer and I were dying to shoot this.

We walked to his back field and unloaded a full magazine. My second group at about 15-yards was essentially all in the same ragged hole.

Yes the Ruger PC Carbine is accurate, not sub-MOA 100-yard accuracy, but certainly hit the can at 100-yard accuracy.

Add in a nicely fluted barrel with factory support for muzzle devices and suppressors, and the Ruger PC Carbine features some nice upgrades that many people would not expect in a $600 rifle.

After an initial break-in period, the Ruger PC Carbine was perfectly reliable with a wide variety of ammo.

Initially, we did have some issues with trigger reset when the trigger was pulled and held back solidly.

It was an odd malfunction, however, after 100 or so rounds of break-in, that issue has not re-appeared.

The takedown feature is elegantly simple.

Lock the bolt back, push the locking lever forward, and turn the barrel about ⅓-turn to remove the barrel.

Install is the same three-second process in reverse. Yes, you can leave a magazine in the disassembled state for fast deployment.

With the 16” barrel, with the barrel off, the entire rifle can very easily stow into any typical Eddie Bauer backpack, which seems like a handy feature for backpackers and those suspicious about world collapse.

Final Thoughts

Honestly, I love the Ruger PC Carbine. The rifle is just brutal simplicity paired with elegantly rugged functionality — it just plain works.

I have often wished upon a star that Ruger would make a 10/22 that fired 9mm rounds from a GLOCK magazine — no really, I actually have.

They did and it is a freaky awesome, fun and accurate rifle that is just at home in the hands of LEO or homeowner for defense or banging away on cans and steel for smiles.

It is not beautiful, but the utilitarian functionality and features will make this one of the most attractive rifles in the Ruger line for 2018.

Ruger PC Carbine Specifications:

  • Stock: Black Synthetic
  • Capacity: 17
  • Barrel Length: 16.12″
  • Overall Length: 34.37″
  • Barrel Feature: Threaded, Fluted
  • Front Sight: Protected Blade
  • Rear Sight: Adjustable Ghost Ring
  • Thread Pattern: 1/2″-28
  • Weight: 6.8 lb.
  • Length of Pull: 12.62″ – 14.12″
  • Material Aluminum: Alloy
  • Finish: Type III Hardcoat Anodized
  • Twist: 1:10″ RH
  • Grooves: 6

Will a Ruger PC Carbine be in your future? How does it rank as a survival rifle? Share your answers in the comment section.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (28)

  1. Anyone else have a problem with a Volquartsen TG9 for a Ruger PC9 not fitting into a Midwest Industries PC9 Lower Chassis?

  2. Held one. Haven’t shot one. They seem very well-made and sturdy. Love the ‘takedown’ aspect.

  3. The cx4 beretta store rifle chambered for 9mm takes 92fs magazines and has a glock adapter that cost $20. It is a “bull pup” style rife and functions very well. I have put thousands of rounds threw it and never had a problem. I paid around $650.

  4. Hi-Points are fugly and crude, but are not junk. They hold up well and are actually pretty accurate. The only real complaint I have heard about them is the cheap 10 round magazine they come with. If the mfr. were to modify them to work with Ruger or Glock mags, they would be a lot more useful.

  5. I picked one up a couple of weeks ago for $500.
    Swapped the ruger insert for the glock, very easty to do. As a south paw, i love the adaptability. I took it our local indoor range, “shoot point blank,”
    and dumped a few mags down range. I had a bit of trouble seeing the front sight moderste to low light conditions. At 50 yrds easy 3 in groups, the trigger was awsome compaired to a 1022 factory trigger. The recoil was typical of 9mm blowback carbines. I did notice a fair amount of torque associated with this gun. Overall, i think this is a fantastic little rifle. I hope ruger comes out with 10mm and a mag well adapter that will adapt to the hk vp9, another fine pistol, my fav at the moment. Also, will fit in the 1022 take down case.

    1. hipoint 10mm carbine is your best bet. i think i saw a 45 carbine the other day.more like an AR. no take downs in other calibers.

  6. nice, probably better than a keltec sub2000. the sub does fold but then you cannot put an optic on it which negates this feature. ruger is prob a heavier more substantial gun that takes an optic with no problem. only problem is i need one that take M&P mags. kel tec does. ruger will never make this adapter from competing rifle company. glock does not make rifles. we will have to wait for 3rd party to make M&P adapter magwell.

  7. I think this would be even more attractive if it were to be made available in a few more calibers. Calibers like 10mm, .40 S&W, .45ACP, etc.

  8. Ruger had a Police Carbine about 20 years ago, used the P series pistol magazines, available in 9mm and .40. How is this gun different, or is it just an update made to use Glock mags?

  9. Looks nice, what about a 40 S&W interchangeable front end and adaptors for Beretta mags as well? The 9 & 40’s are the most reloaded, popular calibers which is why the 40 would be a nice addition.
    As for price, you always have R&D to recover but it could be hot at $475-$525. I agree with another post that an AR at $650 would be first choice. Make money on volume…..

  10. Wait…what did I miss? It was noted that 450 could be fired in 45 Cap pistols rated for 45 +P…..Could this carbine shoot 45 +P ammo as well? Cartridge dimensions the same?? Thx.

  11. Anyone else reminded of the scene in Demolition Man where they say “After the franchise wars, ALL restaurants are now Taco Bell”?

    How long before ALL guns take “Glock” magazines?

    1. It is new and the price will drop after 6-12 months. I still would pay more for this rifle than I would a high point. Don’t have to worry about it flying apart as you would with a cheap HP.

    2. I’d be more inclined to consider that possibility if there were any cases of it ever having happened. However so far every case of people complaining about the HiPoint carbines have been trolls babbling third hand crap or fools who complain because the third-party “high capacity” magazines don’t work well. NO cases of HiPoint carbines “flying apart” even among the trolls.

      Personally I find the HiPoint carbines almost as ugly as their pistols (although in different ways), but you cannot honestly fault their performance or their reliability with good magazines.

      The Ruger looks like a rifle (not like something that ought to have an orange muzzle), and the new version of their PCC is a takedown (which will be attractive to some), the interchangeable mag wells will be very attractive IF they bring out some additional options (Beretta, S&W, Sig) but at the current price they have to be hoping for sales to two groups of people: 1) those who have too much money to spend, and 2) those whose toys are paid for by the taxpayers.

  12. If this carbine sold for $300 or less, it would be a hit. At $600? Not even close. I can get an extremely well made AR-15 platform, in carbine or pistol form, that takes Glock mags, for $500.

  13. The PC carbine looks sweet. Will wait and see if Ruger decides to make a .40 S&W version. My CCW weapon is 40 cal, and I have 1000+ rounds of ammo. It’s been my primary for years and its hard to envision trying swap over to 9mm, tho i have thought about it !!

  14. I am waiting on a .45 ACP version. A comparison of the CMMG Guard in .45 ACP and a Ruger .45 ACP carbine would be a worthwhile read.

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