Welcome to this week’s episode. We’re on the range with a Stoeger pistol to look at, and this time, it is the STR-9SC, an optic-ready handgun chambered for 9 mm Luger and sized appropriately for concealed carry. To see this latest Stoeger carry gun in use on the range, watch our video above.
But before we get into the meat and potatoes of this striker-fired micro-nine, let’s first go back to 2019. This is when Stoeger Industries caught the SHOT Show by surprise with the unveiling of a new gun. Remarkably, it wasn’t a shotgun or airgun, which are two products the company does very well. That new model was a striker-fired handgun called the STR-9 and it came chambered for 9 mm Luger. Each year since that first unveiling, Stoeger has come to market with niche-specific extensions that have all caught the attention of the consumer market.
We’re checking out the latest Stoeger import. Just like all the other STR-9s and STR-40s, the STR-9SC is modeled after the Gen3 Glock design. When building an affordably priced pistol, why reinvent the wheel, right? That means there is a rich aftermarket of upgrades and accessories, though unfortunately, the pistol does not accept Glock magazines. It also means this gun has a striker-fired operating system and multiple safeties built within, though the gun does lack a traditional, side-mounted manual safety. Even with this setup, you do get quite a nice trigger in the STR-9SC. Its pull weight is appropriate for a gun designed for deep concealment, contains a passive blade-in-shoe safety and offers up a crisp break with a short, tactile reset.
Stoeger catalogs three options in its STR-9 Subcompact line: a base model with limited accessories and simple sights, and two optic-ready choices. The sample you see here is the latter, which does have options for three white-dot sights or Tritium night sights. Optic-ready units will also come with an improved accessory package, which includes three removable grip modules and four optic-mounting plates. The subcompact polymer frame of the STR-9SC is quite user-friendly, too, thanks to a generous undercut to the trigger guard that melds nicely into an upper finger groove on the frontstrap. Panels of texturing throughout combine to lock the hand into its firing position, and an extension on the magazine baseplate really helps in controlling muzzle rise. There’s even a three-slot Picatinny rail along the dustcover, which is a feature you rarely find on many subcompacts.
Given the nature of daily carry, which often exposes guns to harsh environments, our testers found the Nitride treatment here on the slide to be a boon to the overall design. On the range, we also found the STR-9SC to be a shootable little platform. Though we decided to run the factory, dovetailed “irons,” a red-dot optic is sure to improve the accuracy potential of the STR-9SC. The gun’s 10-round magazines drop free and load simply. Our testers particularly enjoy the gun’s overall ergonomics, which is more evident the smaller these guns get. Aggressive serrations, fore and aft, are thoughtful additions, too.
Stoeger STR-9SC Specifications
Importer: Stoeger Industries
Action Type: recoil-operated, semi-automatic, centerfire pistol
Chambering: 9 mm Luger
Barrel: 3.4" Nitride-treated steel
Frame: black polymer
Slide: Nitride-treated steel
Magazine: 10-round detachable box
Sights: three-dot configuration; optic-ready
Overall Length: 6.5"
Weight: 22.4 ozs.