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Old July 28, 2014, 02:37 PM   #1
Unlicensed Dremel
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Huge thumbs down for Ruger American

Really sad, that they made a really accurate, otherwise-nice rifle that does this, but after handling it, I wouldn't give a twenty dollar bill for one, due to the magazine.

It's cheap plastic, which is fine I suppose, given the price point, but you can just about blow on the release (very little pressure), and it falls out and worse yet, there is no sidewall friction to stop it or slow it down as you might expect there to be. It's a pure free fall the moment you release it with a light touch. And that's with an empty mag. Surefire recipe for a ruined hunt. As a range gun, it's fun, but it ain't a hunting rifle - that's for sure.

Oh, and not only is it super light, it's a very large tab, so that increases the chance of catching it on something. I hate it when gun makers get everything right except one or two things ... but they're major things; deal-breakers like this mag just begging to be lost. You see it all the time though - products just not ready for prime time being brought out. So close but yet no (proverbial) cigar.

Anyway, YMMV, but pass for me. At least it makes choices simpler. I had high hopes for it, because other detach-mag Rugers are well-made, such as the 10/22 series and similar designs - that mag is hard to release for a reason (and with upward pressure, not front-to-back pressure, the worst possible choice) - the way it should be!
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Old July 28, 2014, 06:30 PM   #2
tahunua001
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isn't that a selling point for most semi autos is a drop free mag?

one thing you may think about is that the weight of actually having ammo in the mag could actually place pressure against the mag release, actually allowing it to hold better?


it is also possible that you just happened to pick up a defective rifle? I've handled several and never found any to have a particularly light mag release. yes the mag is plastic but so are the billions of 10/22 magazines and the RAR mags are essentially made from the same plastic as poly pistol frames so I really don't get where all the animosity comes from about the RAR plastic mags.
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Old July 28, 2014, 07:14 PM   #3
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duct tape???????????
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Old July 28, 2014, 07:35 PM   #4
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Was a concern of mine as well. But it works. Fits much tighter when a loaded mag is in the gun. I'm quite pleased with both of mine.
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Old July 28, 2014, 09:41 PM   #5
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It's what's in fashion these days. Plastic rifles don't appeal to me either, but evidentally they sell. It's what the world has come to. I shun that stuff, myself.
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Old July 29, 2014, 09:11 AM   #6
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I traded for a Ruger American in .308 a few weeks ago. I think you will find that a loaded magazine does act differently than an unloaded one. I have only shot around 40-50 rounds through mine, but the magazine works just fine. When I first got the rifle I though the magazine was a cheesy affair, but it does work well, at least so far for me. The magazine release does not appear to be very substantial, but time will tell how it works out. Overall, I have been impressed with the rifle for what it is, a bargain budget firearm.

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Old July 29, 2014, 09:45 AM   #7
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I have a Ruger 77 Hornet converted to K Hornet so now I am having a hard time with feeding the K Hornet shoulder in the Mag. I have ground more clearance but still not happy. I lost the original mag. because it fell out wile carrying it in the woods. The spring on the release could be much heavier. You might try replacing the spring. It is easy enough. Whet ever the tension is on the spring get one that is 2-3 times heavier. Good luck
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Old July 29, 2014, 10:01 AM   #8
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So buy a Savage, but the the Rugers are an excellent value and It sounds more like a personal preference of yours than an actual issue with the Americans.
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Old July 29, 2014, 10:26 AM   #9
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Just a random and probably useless thought, but -
Has anyone tried attaching the mag in some fool-proof manner, and loading from the top?
Is it even possible?
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Old July 29, 2014, 01:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Has anyone tried attaching the mag in some fool-proof manner, and loading from the top?
Is it even possible?
It's possible, but not recommended.

I while back, we had a post where someone posted a quote from Ruger of the service life of the magazines. Loading by pushing cartridges down through the feed lips (rather that pushing them in from the front, under the feed lips) reduces service life by something like 50%. ...And service life is already fairly short. (I can't find the original post, to quote the actual numbers. )


The cheesy magazine and flimsy stock are the deal breakers for me, for the American. But, after shooting Cornbush's (he has a couple), I will admit that a loaded magazine acts differently than an empty and is not really an issue. It stops rattling and the latch engages positively. It's still cheap, cheesy, and will have a shorter life than a metal magazine; but it does work.
Then again, it's $40 + shipping for a replacement....
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Old July 29, 2014, 03:00 PM   #11
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U.D. I have dropped the magazine out of my American more times than I care to count. I bought it as a toy and not a serious rifle. Its fine for a "truck gun." Stock sucks and far as I am concerned magazine is of equal quality to the stock. Trigger was crud until I completely re-worked it. On a positive note, they did get the headspace correct. Thats more than I can say of the last $800 Ruger I bought.
Guess you could take some black duck tape and tape the magazine in. Could not hurt the appearance of the rifle any. Might improve it a grade.

Coldbeer, you are absolutely right. It is a "personal preference" that my magazines stay in my rifle and I not have to back track my steps to find my magazine. Maybe I am just asking too much. Who knows?
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Old July 29, 2014, 10:58 PM   #12
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Coldbeer, you are absolutely right. It is a "personal preference" that my magazines stay in my rifle and I not have to back track my steps to find my magazine.
One could always install a small loop on the mag and attach it to the rifle with a lanyard, like the early 1911s.
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Old July 30, 2014, 10:09 AM   #13
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That would be hilarious.
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Old July 31, 2014, 04:57 AM   #14
rfd
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love that RAR magazine! i wanna convert all my rifles to that mag!!

besides, i only ramp load one cartridge at a time anyway.

and yeah, YMMV.
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Old July 31, 2014, 06:57 AM   #15
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Mine is great!
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Old July 31, 2014, 11:00 PM   #16
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While not desirable, if you loose the magazine you still have a single shot rifle!

I only shot more than once at anything (long story and enough to make a grown man weep how badly we did on that shoot, we did get it in the end though an embarrassment of biblical proportions)

Rest of the time one shot and down, I think most are a miss or a good hit.
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Old August 2, 2014, 04:06 PM   #17
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I understand people's experiences and opinions are different, which is fine. But just as a contemporaneous example: Two days ago, I was literally on my hands and knees crawling through some of the thickest briars I've ever crawled through (pig hunting), with a rifle - and have scratches to show for it. It was bad enough worrying about not plugging the bore with mud (also going up and down creek banks in these briars) - surely didn't need to be losing a mag in there... just a pain and risk with no real upside to it. Just as an example of why I form the opinion that I do on these. It's a deal-breaker for me. But for others hunting without crawling in briars, I can see where it may NOT be a deal-breaker, perhaps. I'd give a seldom-used body part to live and hunt in a place with no briars and brambles. [Say, incidentally, what kind of shoot-through tape or doodad should I use to protect the bore from mud? Cloth tape? Electrical tape? Other?]

Quote:
While not desirable, if you loose the magazine you still have a single shot rifle!
Well that's true. Unless you (a) brought no extra ammo, and (b) are the type that doesn't chamber load on your way to and from the ambush site. Then you are UTCWOAP (up the creek without a paddle), if you lose it en route to your spot(s). But as you imply, at least it's a push feed, so if you have one round in your pocket, you're still in the hunt; 'tis true.
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Last edited by Unlicensed Dremel; August 2, 2014 at 04:45 PM.
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Old August 3, 2014, 12:06 AM   #18
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Say, incidentally, what kind of shoot-through tape or doodad should I use to protect the bore from mud? Cloth tape? Electrical tape? Other?
In heavy scrub, your best bet is electrical tape.
In thinner/less gnarly areas, you can usually get away with water balloons.
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Old August 3, 2014, 02:59 AM   #19
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You could also get heavy duty washing gloves and cut the fingers off. This would give you a little more durability than a water balloon. Obviously, a pair of gloves would give you ten muzzle covers.

The only problem is with whatever you place over the muzzle, if you attempt to shoot through it at anything other that close range, your accuracy is going to suffer from uneven gas dispersion.
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Old August 3, 2014, 09:33 AM   #20
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The mag latch is the only thing I like about the RA magazine. I have had no issue with it so far.

Yesterday I took both an RA and SA (Axis) in 223 to the range. The SA mag dropped out of the receiver after chambering a round
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Old August 3, 2014, 10:06 AM   #21
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ok some facts

the ruger american is a LIGHT hunting rifle, meant to be easily carried and used on long hunting trips and have easy balance as to not cause fatigue


the placement of the magazine is to create a flush magazine to stock look, which when loaded also adds weight to stabilize shooting (a little)

the rifles magazine is plastic, but so are my howas legacy sports mags and the howas are looser than the RA , and both shoot and function well

my buddy has the RA in 30 06 (yes the kick in a light rifle is annoying)

but weve only had issues when using some Remington soft point rounds(tips were malformed) but otherwise ever had any issue with the actual rifle functioning
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Old August 3, 2014, 11:45 AM   #22
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and both shoot and function well
Of course they do! At the range. That's not the issue. The issue is Murphy, who is my constant companion on hunting outings. Murphy makes any branch, shrub, briar, doodad hanging from my fanny pack, or errant body part hit something it shouldn't. A mag catch should be STIFF, not light enough to practically disengage by a heavy breeze then free fall like Rosie O'Donnell after stepping on a banana peel (why else would OTHER Rugers like the 10/22 be so danged hard to disengage?). AND (nor or but AND), there should be some friction resistance by the mag walls engaging the stock surface on the way. AND, it should never have a front-to-rear disengagement direction - the same way that brush acts on it when walking in a ya know, forward direction. The Ruger fails on all three counts - each one exacerbating the other exponentially. It's a deal-breaking fail under actual hunting conditions. But for those of you who areN'T affected by Murphy's law, due to living under a special sign, it's the perfect budget hunting rifle, without a doubt! And also for those who don't hunt or just walk 50 yards from the pickup to a tree stand over even terrain. Not knocking that; it's a perfectly valid way to hunt. It just ain't reality for me and others like me. If you're on public land, as I am sometimes, if you're NOT crawling through briars, you probably ain't gonna get to where the game IS.
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Last edited by Unlicensed Dremel; August 3, 2014 at 11:51 AM.
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Old August 3, 2014, 03:32 PM   #23
Metal god
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If it was not for the mag . Would you consider the RAR the best tool for the job ?

If so -

1)put a stiffer spring in the mag release .
or
2) bring an extra mag with you
or
3) piece of duct tape over the mag release

If not the best tool , who cares how the mag works ? Get the better tool for the job .
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Old August 3, 2014, 05:28 PM   #24
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It is definitely not the best tool for the job. Comparing the American to a good rifle is about like comparing the new Chinese made Craftsman hand tools to Snap-On or Wright.
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Old August 6, 2014, 10:04 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by reynolds357
It is definitely not the best tool for the job. Comparing the American to a good rifle is about like comparing the new Chinese made Craftsman hand tools to Snap-On or Wright.
I got a tear in my eye the other day walking around Sears and seeing all the tools were now made in China. I wasn't aware they had made the switch. There was a young girl working the tool register and she asked me if I needed help. I told her,"I may need an ambulance because my heart is dying inside from seeing that all these Craftsman labeled tools are now Made in China". Too bad my son won't be able to get an affordable set of American tools when he grows up, like his dad and his grandpa did.
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