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Old December 19, 2011, 10:08 AM   #1
WildWilly
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Ruger m77

I have a Ruger m77 in 243 that I can't get to group very well. I have tried different types of ammo, tightened all screws and checked scope mounts. I did notice that the barrel is not free floating. Should I free float the barrel or try something else?
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Old December 19, 2011, 10:19 AM   #2
TX Hunter
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do not float it, send it back to Ruger and they will accurize it for you.
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Old December 19, 2011, 11:17 AM   #3
jmr40
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If it is one of the older tang safety Rugers they have been out of production since the early 90's. At that time Ruger did not make their own barrels, but purchased them from different outside sources. Some rifles came with quality match grade barrels, others got 2nd rate, inaccurate barrels. Accurace was all over the place on those older versions.

Ruger started producing their own barrels when they went to the 77MK-2 and accuracy has been consistently better since. If your gun is a newer version, then contacting Ruger MAY be of some help. On an older gun, good luck.

Ruger specifically says not to free float their guns. I know of some guys who have done so with mixed results. It seems to help on some, not at all on others.

One quirk of Rugers is the angled action screw. It seems that if it is not tightened correctly it will have a bigger effect on accuracy than any other design. Most people report the best accurtacy by 1st loosening all 3 screws. Then tighten the angled screw as tight as possible. This pulls the action down and back into the stock. If you don't loosen the other screws first they don't allow the action to move properly. Then tighten the rear screw almost as tight. The middle screw should be just tight enough to not loosen and fall out.
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Old December 19, 2011, 11:26 AM   #4
mrawesome22
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Do you clean the barrel with a good copper solvent?
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Old December 19, 2011, 04:53 PM   #5
warbirdlover
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jmr40 just taught me something I didn't know about how to torque (tighten) the action bolts on a M77. Thanks!
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Old December 19, 2011, 05:30 PM   #6
TheNatureBoy
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Ditto Warbirdlover on the copper solvent/cleaner. I have a .280 that I was ready to wrap around a tree before I cleaned the copper outta it. Now its back to driving tacks.
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Old December 20, 2011, 07:38 AM   #7
sc928porsche
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My M77R has been pillar bedded, bedded, and the barrel free floating. It has served me well that way for over 40 years. If I do my part, it will just clover leaf at 200yds. Keep in mind that the trigger has been worked and ammo has been developed for it. This one seems to like Sierra 150gr, backed up by IMR 4350 the best, and backed off from the lands by .015.
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Old December 20, 2011, 09:27 PM   #8
fattymd
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I just floated the barrel on my ruger hawkeye I hope I didn't make it worse.
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Old December 20, 2011, 10:23 PM   #9
PawPaw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmr40
One quirk of Rugers is the angled action screw. It seems that if it is not tightened correctly it will have a bigger effect on accuracy than any other design. Most people report the best accurtacy by 1st loosening all 3 screws. Then tighten the angled screw as tight as possible. This pulls the action down and back into the stock. If you don't loosen the other screws first they don't allow the action to move properly. Then tighten the rear screw almost as tight. The middle screw should be just tight enough to not loosen and fall out.
That's the technique I was taught. Loosening all the screws then tightening the front action screw lets the angled screw pull the action against the recoil shoulder in the stock.
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Old December 20, 2011, 10:29 PM   #10
gman3
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How old is it.

I have a 77 Mk2 30-06 in stainless that is a tack hammer, piles 180s on top of each other. It is not free floating. I understand that before Ruger started making their own barrels, accuracy was kind of a hit or miss thing. (ha ha)
As someone said earlier, tighten the screws in the corrrect sequence before trying anything else.
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Old December 20, 2011, 10:49 PM   #11
44 AMP
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clean the barrel, remove copper fouling (if present) tighten the screws like they said, and shoot some more.

A barrel that is not free floated is not automatically inaccurate. There are lots of very accurate rifles with pressure bedded barrels. The key is how the pressure is applied.

Also, what is "can't get to group very well"? 1 1/2"? 8"? And, of course, there's the obvious, sure its not you?
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Old December 20, 2011, 11:29 PM   #12
FrankenMauser
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For Ruger's own recommendations on action screw torquing, download a manual direct from them: http://www.ruger.com/service/productHistory.html#
Click the appropriate category.
You'll get a pop-up window showing serial number ranges for years of production.
At the top of the new window, there is a link to download a manual for the rifle (.pdf format).


Quote:
A barrel that is not free floated is not automatically inaccurate. There are lots of very accurate rifles with pressure bedded barrels. The key is how the pressure is applied.
He speaks the truth. ^
I have 3 pressure-bedded barrels. They are my best shooters.
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Old December 21, 2011, 07:00 PM   #13
603Country
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All my Rugers have free floated barrels. Admittedly, the best shooter among them was tuned, rebarrelled and bedded by a nationally known gunsmith. The second best shooter has a Hogue stock with the aluminum bedding channel and hasn't had anything else done to it.
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