First Impressions

It was a couple of months ago I received the Ruger SP 101, Wiley Clapp, by TALO for review. I had an idea what to expect as I have had a Ruger SP 101 for about 20 years now, shot it some, and carried it often.  As with all TALO editions, there are upgrades. Some are just aesthetics, but often, the upgrades improve usability.  While the SP 101 is a fine little revolver in its own right, the enhancements suggested by Wiley Clapp and finalized by TALO enhance the little snubby.

As compared to mine, you have a three-inch barrel over the two and a quarter, nicer checkered wooden stock inserts, and much better sights.

Speaking of sights, the rear is a Novak windage adjustable, and the front is a Novak with a brass bead. These are infinitely better than my SP 101, and with the longer barrel, you get a little longer sight radius, a small increase in velocity, and muzzle weight. The added muzzle weight does help soak up some of the perceived recoil, you will appreciate that with full-house .357 Magnum.

The little revolver is a five-shot .357 Magnum with the double-action trigger pull is about thirteen pounds, and the single-action trigger pull being just under six pounds. Very typical trigger pulls on a quality double-action revolver.

During the couple months, I had the test gun myself, and about five other folks put about 600 rounds of ammunition through the revolver with just over half of that being .38 Special. The .38 Special was not bad at all, and the revolver has enough heft; it would make an excellent revolver to introduce someone to the double-action game. The .357 Magnum was a bit snappy, but with proper technique, it was controllable. During that time, none had any issues with the SP 101, and I am not surprised as I have quite a bit more rounds through my SP 101 and it has never given me an issue.

Accuracy wise, we stepped off about thirty feet and had no problem keeping the rounds inside a six-inch circle.


It is no secret Ruger overbuilds their revolvers, and I see this as a good thing. The little SP 101, while being a fine revolver in its own right, does benefit from the wisdom of Wiley Clapp. It is my opinion TALO did right by this one, and it has the upgrades you would need without having to buy a gun and send it off to your gunsmith to have the changes made. While revolvers are not immune to issues if they are built right and maintained, they tend to work and work well, and that is evident so far in this Wiley Clapp edition SP 101 and the one I have had for a couple of decades now. If you are looking for something that is easy to carry but works as it should for self-defense, home defense, concealed carry, or even a second gun to leave in your glove box, this revolver is worth considering.


Stocks: Black Rubber, Engraved Wood
Front Sight: brass bead Novak
Rear Sight: Novak
Barrel Length: 3″
Material: Stainless Steel
Finish: Satin Stainless
Capacity: 5
Twist: 1:16″ RH
Grooves: 5
Overall:  Length: 8″
Weight: 28 oz.
MSRP: $993




Bangers Shooting Sports 

Defender Ammunition 

DoubleTap Ammunition 

By Hunter Elliott

I spent much of my youth involved with firearms and felt the call early on to the United States Marine Corps, following in my father's and his brother's footsteps. Just after high school I enlisted and felt most at home on the rifle range, where I qualified expert with several firearms and spent some time as a rifle coach to my fellow Marines. After being honorably discharged I continued teaching firearm safety, rifle and pistol marksmanship, and began teaching metallic cartridge reloading. In the late 1990s I became a life member to the National Rifle Association and worked with the Friends of the NRA. Around that time my father and I became involved with IDPA and competed together up until he passed away. I began reviewing firearms for publications in the mid 2000s and have been fortunate to make many friends in the industry. Continuing to improve my firearms skills and knowledge is a never ending journey in which we should all be committed. I am also credited as weapons master on a few independent films.

2 thoughts on “Ruger SP101 Wiley Clapp by TALO”
  1. Does the Clapp version have hammer and trigger shims. One of the best ways to smooth uot the trigger pull on the Ruger DA revolvers. At 13 lbs the pull wold seem to be a bit heavy. I have the SP-01 in .22lr and the trigger pull is excessive. I am looking at ra reduced trigger return spring to help onthe pull. Thoughts?

  2. MCARBO sells a trigger pull reduction kit which, iirc includes some shims. They also have videos that show how to install the parts and polish the internals of the SP 101 and GP 100. Very helpful! It works!
    Also, Wolff sells an assortment of springs that will help if the MCARBO items don’t quite fit, or the final trigger pull is not quite what you wish.

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