Ruger has issued a wide recall of all Mark IV and 22/45 models because of a problem with the safety and sear and has told owners that the pistols should not be used.
The company says on its website that any Mark IV pistol produced before June 1, 2017 has “the potential to discharge unintentionally if the safety is not utilized correctly” and are being recalled for a retrofit including a new safety and sear.
The issue is: In some cases, if the trigger is pulled while the safety lever is midway between the “safe” and “fire” positions and not full engaged in either, the pistol may or may not fire when the trigger is pulled.
If the gun doesn’t fire when the trigger is pulled, it may fire if the user then pushes the safety to the “fire” position without the trigger being activated.
Here’s a statement from a Ruger press release on the company’s website:
“Although only a small percentage of pistols appear to be affected and we are 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. Until your Mark IV pistol has been retrofitted or you verify that it is not subject to the recall, we strongly recommend that you not use your pistol.”
Ruger says they have received a “small number” of reports from the field indicating the problem exists. Additional testing confirmed the issue and the recall was issued.
While the company has not given a time-frame for the retrofitting, they have made the recall fairly easy for Mark IV owners to navigate.
They may simply go to the Ruger website and enter the serial number of their pistol to determine if it is included in the recall. If it is, the site will prompt you to enter your name and address. When Ruger is ready to fix your gun, the company will send out an empty box with the appropriate return label.
Since the problem exists in parts contained in the grip frame assembly, that’s all that has to be sent to Ruger for repairs. That part is not serialized, meaning it can be shipped via regular methods like UPS without going through an FFL.
However, you don’t need the website to know if your gun is safe or not.
If the serial number begins with “401” or “WBR,” the gun has been recalled. If the serial number begins with “500” it has not.
Any Mark IV or 22/45 pistol that has already been retrofitted will display a letter “S” in the white dot that is visible when the safety is engaged.
The company urges Mark IV owners NOT to send their frames in for retrofitting until they receive a return box.
Though Ruger can’t say when it will begin shipping the return boxes, they have promised to “return your grip frame assembly within one week of receiving it.”
The website also says that Ruger will return repaired grip frame assemblies to owners with a free magazine as a “thank you for your participation.” Customers in states with magazine restrictions will receive a ShopRuger gift certificate in lieu of a magazine.
The .22 LR pistol was introduced in 2016 as a successor to the company’s first pistol, the Ruger Standard Model, first made in the 1950s and the Mark I, Mark II, and Mark III models followed.
The Mark IV represents the most drastic of design changes from the previous pistols in the series, with reworked internals allowing for a vastly simplified disassembly process, solving a major gripe about previous models. The Mark IV has been offered in hunter, target, and competition versions and as three models in the company’s 22/45 configuration as well.