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Old December 21, 2011, 08:24 PM   #1
Cary
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Ruger Boat Paddle Stock

I have a Ruger M77 Mark II with the boat paddle stock in 243. This stock design by Ruger is a curiosity to me. I am not familiar with the history of it but I assume it was revolutionary when introduced by Ruger at the time. It is a synthetic stock that is manufactured in several different pieces unlike the modern one piece synthetic stocks of today. Was this design well received at the time? What are the pros and cons of this Ruger stock design? Is there any metal in it to supply support to it? I'm just curious as to how Ruger came up with this design. Anyone here who can enlighten me on these questions I have?
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Old December 21, 2011, 09:45 PM   #2
warbirdlover
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I've had one that came on my Ruger M77 MkII all-weather .300 Win Mag for almost 20 years. I just sold it as I'm putting a Boyd's wood stock on it. My two cents is it's a VERY strong stock. My rifle shot cloverleaf groups with it. The sling swivel system is a disaster. Noisy and you can't just clip on a new sling. You have to jury rig it to get it on. And finally, the cutouts etc are to save weight but it is just plain ugly. For some reason there is a cult following on these stocks. When I bought it I thought it was the coolest thing on the planet.... Here's a pic...

Wanna buy the scope on this? Includes the Ruger high rings...
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Old December 21, 2011, 10:05 PM   #3
jmr40
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They have a cult like following among a few guys, but were a flop commercially. When Ruger changed to a more conventional style stock sales increased.

They are touted as being stronger, well maybe stronger than wood, but not any more so than any other quality synthetic. I've had a few of the boat paddle stocked guns and either replaced the stock, or sold the gun. They are heavy, slick and hard to hold on to, have a poorly designed sling mounting system, and have a small surface on the butt which amplifies recoil on hard kicking guns. The hard recoil pad doesn't help much either.

The good news is that if you replace it with something better, you can easily sell the old stock to one of the guys who seem to love them. I found the best source for replacement Ruger stocks was straight from the factory. It has been a few years and I know the price has gone up but I bought a factory synthetic to replace my last boat paddle for $80 shipped from Ruger. Walnut would have been $135.
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Old December 21, 2011, 10:09 PM   #4
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Not exactly real pretty either.
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Old December 22, 2011, 01:15 AM   #5
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What's up with the grip and fore-end? Are those grip panels of a different texture or composition?
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Old December 22, 2011, 01:25 AM   #6
Scorch
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The "boat paddle" stocks are molded out of Zytel nylon with removable contrasting grip inserts, nearly indestructible. Early stocks were a sage green with green inserts, later stocks were dark gray with sage green inserts. The intent was to create an all-weather rifle that would not rust, swell, warp, and was lightweight. They were not particularly well-received because of their looks (I like mine), and many complained about the sling swivels, but the real killer was that they transmitted recoil extremely well. Even a 243 felt like you were shooting a 7mm Rem Mag, and magnums were brutal to shoot. 2 or 3 years later, Ruger went to a conventional design molded thermoplastic stock that looks plain vanilla like everyone elses.
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Old December 22, 2011, 01:48 AM   #7
bamaranger
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seems like

I think I read some comments in one of my Ruger books from either the old man himself, or one of his lead engineers. I will check and get back.
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Old December 22, 2011, 03:34 AM   #8
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I love the one I have in '06. I've had it 10 plus years. It seems to kick less than other '06's I've shot, I'll never get ride of it. I would love to find a few other in differnt calibers.
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Old December 22, 2011, 04:25 AM   #9
Dr. Strangelove
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I've always liked them, if you aren't going with wood, then I can't see that the "boat paddle" is any worse than any other synthetic stock.

Shoot me a pm if you're interested in getting rid of it.
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Old December 22, 2011, 05:13 AM   #10
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Thanks for the information on this subject. Looking at the design of this stock with the removable panels I question if someone has ever manufactured some replacement panels from wood to say dress this stock up some? It would be similar to the original grip panel inserts on the Ruger GP100 revolvers. I'm not saying this would be practical as the current panels on this stock lend to a rugged indestructible design. It is a gun to use in a rough environment. It would be interesting to see how it would look with say some rosewood panels with some checkering on them. My gun stock leans more in the direction of black in color. Just brainstorming here.
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Old December 22, 2011, 01:15 PM   #11
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I've been trying to find an old Ruger to build a .35 Whelen on. One of my hopes for that rifle, is to find the donor action in a boat-paddle stock.

It isn't a requirement, but I'd really like one.
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Old December 22, 2011, 09:14 PM   #12
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Got one in 22Mag ALL WEATHER its tuff as nails makes a great truck gun.
Had it sence 92 or 93 its still in good shape.
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Old December 23, 2011, 02:14 PM   #13
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The first deer rifle that I bought for myself was an early 90s .308 all weather with the boat paddle.
I fought to make that thing accurate, but never got any better than about 1.5" benched, even after floating it in the boat paddle and playing with stock bolt torque. It shot Fed GMM into 2" groups at 100yds stock.
The boat paddle stock was tough as nails though. I remember sitting in a freezing rain storm and watching the rain freeze on that stock. I never had to worry about it in poor weather, that much was sure.

That said, give me a B&C Medalist any day of the week for accuracy.
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Old June 23, 2013, 10:45 PM   #14
KillinPigs
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Regarding the Boat Oar rubber stock on the M77, I've had mine (30-06) for several years and shoot Hornady Light Magnums through it. It kicks like a .243 and is light and very accurate. I have called Ruger and other companies to order another stock for another rifle. Unfortunately there are none to be found.
Good luck!
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Old June 24, 2013, 01:08 AM   #15
bamaranger
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Hubbell Plastics

The boat paddles were done by an outfit called Hubbell Plastics, using Zytel, From "Ruger and His Guns", engineer Jay Jarvis comments that the butt scallop and forearm inserts was a way to reduce bulk without requiring a complex mold core which would be more expensive.

The inserts cover holes in the stock left by the simple mold design. The solid thin butt yields strength w/o bulk via the same simple mold concept. (my translation)
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Old June 24, 2013, 06:04 PM   #16
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Heck, you could probably row your boat with it, too.
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Old June 25, 2013, 10:38 AM   #17
PetahW
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cary

Looking at the design of this stock with the removable panels, I question if someone has ever manufactured some replacement panels from wood to say dress this stock up some ?
It would be similar to the original grip panel inserts on the Ruger GP100 revolvers.
It would be interesting to see how it would look with say some rosewood panels with some checkering on them.


At one time, before they closed their doors, W.H.Lett Grips (owned by a close personal friend of Bill Ruger) used to make/market replacement panels of various exotic wood - but IIRC none wore checkering.

I disremember, at this late date, if any other aftermarket gunstock companies did too.


.

Last edited by PetahW; June 25, 2013 at 10:47 AM.
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