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Old June 3, 2012, 02:48 PM   #1
Metal god
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Ruger American rifle in 308 review

Took my new 308 Ruger american rifle to the range the other day .I spent $360 on the rifle and $ 60 on the scope . I have a 3-9x40 mil-dot tasco world class scope on it . Its a good scope for the money and worked well . I know now that I will need more magnification for what this rifle can do . We were shooting on a table with a rest and rear bag . At 100 yards the rifle will and did shoot 1 MOA . Ammo used was federal gold metal match 168 gran .A quarter could cover the group . Thats not bad for a $360 rifle not sure you can ask for any more for that price . The trigger was nice . We shot it with the trigger wieght at what ever it came from the factory at . That being said we did notice that if the barrel started to get hot the accuracy droped off . The first two or three shots were bang on and tight groups . I would shoot 3 rounds check the grouping load 3 more shoot check the group load 3 more shoot . The barrel would get a bit hot and the grouping would start to dorp off a bit . If you let it cool down the first 3 shots would be bang on again . Realy thats all you need , 3 shots . You take the first shot at the deer or what ever and maybe a follow up shot or 2 . Go claim your trophy and put the gun away till next year . LOL bottom line is good gun boarder line great . Not sure you can beat it for the price . Savage sells one for around that price but at that price you do not get the accu-trigger . You have to shell out another hundred bucks for that . The trigger on the ruger is nice and is adjustible from 3 to 5 pounds . Again very good gun at a great price . It comes in 4 cal. 270 , 30-06 , 243 . and 308 Go get ya one .

Last edited by Metal god; June 3, 2012 at 03:06 PM.
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Old June 3, 2012, 03:25 PM   #2
fineredmist
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What you experienced was normal for a hunting rifle with a sporter weight barrel. The key for this rifle is the first cold barrel shot as this will determine if you go home with a deer or just an empty cartridge case. If you can cover three rounds with a quarter at 100 yds. you are golden. Enjoy the venison.
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Old June 3, 2012, 03:58 PM   #3
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Thanks for the opinion. I appreciate when people take the time to share their experiences with firearms that are new.
It's nice to hear from people who aren't paid by the company to do a good review. To me the gun magazines and even many online reviews are biased or take advertisements from the company which is selling the product, making them suspect at best, and downright dishonest at worst.

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to share your impression of this rifle.
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Old June 3, 2012, 04:34 PM   #4
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Yea my post show i edited it .Not realy .I was trying to up load the photo of my target but the file is to big .
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Old June 3, 2012, 07:19 PM   #5
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That's cool man, I've been hoping someone here would do a post on the new Ruger. Did the magazine work fine? How did it handle, from carry to cheek?
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Old June 3, 2012, 07:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
I know now that I will need more magnification for what this rifle can do
You don't need any more magnification. Set at 9x you have plenty of scope for 800-1000 yard shooting. When you can afford to do better you need better quality glass. I'd take a quality 4X scope anyday over a cheap 4-14X50 scope.

I like the looks of the new Ruger and reports are favorable. But I already have too many, better rifles or I'd give one a serious look.
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Old June 3, 2012, 08:51 PM   #7
Metal god
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Sorry I did not include more on my review .

The gun is very light so it has a bit of recoil . Some say the recoil is about the same as a 12 gauge ,I think thats about right maybe a little more .

The mag was easy to load and worked great .

From carry to cheek ? I did not do any shooting that required me to move the gun from a carry to cheek/shooting position. I did how ever take the last 4 shots of the day standing and holding the rifle free hand . I had a 8" target set up at 100 yards . All 4 shots were on target I guess you can say I shot a 8" group standing .

There is one more important thing I forgot to say . The barrel is completely free floated . Thats good yes and the stock is sturdy enough when holding it but when you set the rifle on the rest on the front part of the stock the barrel will make contact with the sock and is know longer free floating . We just set the rest way up on the stock just under the barrel nut . That seemed to work just fine .
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Old June 3, 2012, 09:49 PM   #8
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Last week got two 3-shot 100-yard groups from a .30-06 American with a new Redfield 3-9 scope at 5/8 inches. Four of the five test loads held at one inch or under, the 5th it just didn't like.
The gun can shoot.

Mag is infinitely easier to get out than on the 10/22s.
Very smooth bolt.
Denis
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Old June 3, 2012, 11:19 PM   #9
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Glad to see you reporting the use of the Tasco world class scope.Far too many people completely dismiss scopes that don't cost $300-$500 dollars or more.The Tasco world class & varmint series tend to offer excellent performance at well under $100.00
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Old June 4, 2012, 11:20 AM   #10
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Rifleshooter (?) magazine has a big review on it in this month's edition. They rated it very high!
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Old June 4, 2012, 01:10 PM   #11
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Has anyone had a chance to shoot other sub-$500 "starter" rifles (Marlin X7, T/C Venture, Mossberg ATR100 or 4x4, Savage Axis, Weatherby Vanguard 2, Dick's Sporting Goods Remington 700 ADL, etc.) vs. the Ruger American? Was wondering how the American stacks up against others on the current market.

Also, how does the adjustable "trigger" (except for Axis) compares with others. Have to remove from stock to adjust?

The starter rifle category is very crowded now and it's great for the consumer.
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Old June 4, 2012, 04:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
Has anyone had a chance to shoot other sub-$500 "starter" rifles
I have shot the Axis in 243 Win, a WalMart Remington 700 ADL in 7mm Remington Mag, and a Weatherby Vanguard Series 2 in 243 Win a number of times. My friends and I all agree those three rifles are very good entry level rifles but the Weatherby is the most gun for the money. It has the best trigger, is the most accurate, and has the most features. None of use have adjusted our triggers.
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Old June 4, 2012, 09:58 PM   #13
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I wanted that ruger american also but there's no left handers.......so I tried the savage 11 trophy hunter xp, also in a 308 today.....just handled it, I did not shoot it........

it's got the accutrigger and a 3-9 x 40 prostaff nikon scope that seemed to fit me well with no fish eye in the scope.........for just over 7 pounds including the scope.............so it's gonna buck...........

So far I like it and it's in the mail.................in a left hand bolt.......

for me........for to hunt....in the forest of yor.......should be a dandy to 200 yards easy with a 180 grainer

with a kick
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Old June 5, 2012, 04:43 PM   #14
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"Has anyone had a chance to shoot other sub-$500 "starter" rifles"

A few of you may have seen my comments on this board regarding the T/C Venture (mine is chambered in .270 Win). For those who have not, I've been very impressed with mine. It apparently hates Federal Premium with 150 grain Partitions--which most wouldn't use on Alabama whitetails to begin with--but it shoots everything 130 grain I've tried very well.

My handloads using 130 gr. Nosler BTs and either H4831SC or IMR 4350 routinely get less than 0.5" at 100 yards off the bench...my best is 0.135". Shooting from field positions naturally opens up the groups to about 1", but that's me, not the rifle.

The trigger is the best on any rifle I currently own, and I appreciate the short bolt lift--60 degrees or something near that--easily clears the scope and makes for quick handling. The stock looks and feels very cheap, but for me they apparently got the size and shape right, because I can shoot 50 rounds at one sitting without feeling beat up at all.

I bought it simply because I wanted a rifle that I didn't have to baby, and didn't mind getting dinged up in the woods. It has a few marks after one season, but that's okay....it's serving its purpose. I've been quite pleased.
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Old June 5, 2012, 08:09 PM   #15
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great review on the Ruger american. Thanks for sharing.
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Old June 5, 2012, 08:51 PM   #16
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A friend bought a Savage Axis in .270 and I shot it. Shoots super tight groups. I don't like the trigger though.
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Old June 5, 2012, 09:06 PM   #17
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Good Review, thanks, sounds like a good hunting rifle, should work fine.

Allen J.

I have not fired the other budget rifles, but I have fired a Mossberg ATR 100in .270 Winchester, that belongs to a friend of mine, It had a very smooth action, very light crisp trigger, and I was able to keep the rounds just over an inch at 100 yards.
I liked the rifle. Its an inexpensive modern Rifle, but it is as smooth and accurate as an expensive custom. I didnt mean to hijak the thread, but the question was asked.
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Old June 6, 2012, 03:49 AM   #18
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Quote:
"Has anyone had a chance to shoot other sub-$500 "starter" rifles"
Quote:
I have not fired the other budget rifles, but I have fired a Mossberg ATR 100in .270 Winchester, that belongs to a friend of mine, It had a very smooth action, very light crisp trigger, and I was able to keep the rounds just over an inch at 100 yards.
I liked the rifle. Its an inexpensive modern Rifle, but it is as smooth and accurate as an expensive custom. I didnt mean to hijak the thread, but the question was asked.
I own a Mossberg ATR in .308 and my experience mirrors the above.

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Old June 8, 2012, 11:40 AM   #19
Metal god
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Here is my target at 100 yards

If you mesure from center of bullet impact to center of bullet impact it really shot 3/4 MOA

Last edited by Metal god; June 8, 2012 at 02:17 PM.
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Old June 8, 2012, 01:47 PM   #20
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I got to shoot the new Ruger American the other day and I will also say that it was impressive for the price. What MetalGod is saying is right on. I also agree that I flat-out refuse to trust most of the gun mags anymore... every new firearm is MOA and "revolutionary". I love it when a magazine has a glowing review a few pages away from full-page advertisements.

That said, I think this particular rifle holds up to most of the hype.

Things I like:
- price. $360 for a quality, American-made rifle is amazing. I believe in a global marketplace, but when it comes to firearms I think we need to keep making them right here at home.
- safety. The safety is on the tang (where God intended). It could stand to be bigger though, and I like the big tang safety on the Savage much more.
- trigger. The "Marksman Adjustable Trigger" is basically an accu-trigger and is very nice. There is absolutely no movement in the trigger until the blade is pressed, and then it is very smooth. HOWEVER, adjusting the trigger requires removal from the stock first (yuck) and then retightening to a specific weight (ie an accurate torque wrench is required).
- bolt. The full diameter bolt does exactly what it is supposed to: keeps the bolt in line while reloading. I've had other rifles that liked to bind when fully retracted and this wasn't an issue at all.

Things I don't like:
- stock. The stock is the typical flimsy "composite" on most rifles at this price point. The barrel was free-floated out of the box but definitely caused contact when used on a front bag (and would with a bipod too). I will say, though, that the stock "fits" the shooter well... I like Savage rifles and thought I wanted a Savage Axis until I picked one up and it fit like crap (personal opinion on fit). The American also has a quality recoil pad, which many manufacturers skimp on.
- no iron sights. Considering the design, this is likely a walk-around hunting rifle and I always like to have backup iron sights when hunting. You never know when bad weather or a stumble/impact could negate your scope and I wouldn't want to sulk out of the woods without firing a shot.
- no upgrade path. This is a big one for me. $300 could get you a basic Stevens/Savage rifle. Drop in a good aftermarket trigger and you're on par for cost and feature set with the Ruger American... but you can then, if you later decide, buy any of a thousand stocks, barrels, etc and install them yourself. Walnut stock? No problem. Stainless fluted barrel? No problem. And on and on.

Tradeoffs (good or bad depending on your use):
- The rifle is LIGHT (6.25 lbs). If I had to carry a rifle slung over my shoulders while hunting in the mountains this would be high on my list. However, the light rifle does beat you up more than most .308s. It is still manageable but more of a "carry a lot, shoot a little" type rifle.
- sporter contour barrel. Again, this makes it light and perfectly suited for cold-bore shots at game animals. It definitely heats up quickly though and that means you'll have to set it down for a while at the range.
- accuracy. I did shoot MOA with the rifle, but just barely. More than enough for hunting, but won't win any competitions. Again, I don't think you can ask anything more out of a $360 rifle, and a $1000 rifle probably wont shoot 3x smaller groups.

In conclusion, it is a quality rifle and definitely worth the price but I'll probably pass for now. If the rifle has the features you're looking for then I say buy it. If you want any additional features, though, you're better off looking elsewhere because trying to add them brings the price up to midrange rifles. As a new rifle there are NO aftermarket parts, and I doubt there will be aftermarket parts in the future because of the intended audience. Personally I already have a heavy-barrel 308 and a sporter-weight 7mmRM so this doesn't really give me much extra.

BUT, if they expand the line into 7mm-08 I'll be the first in line to buy one.
-StaTiK-
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Old June 8, 2012, 05:11 PM   #21
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That's kinda funny,,,quote from statik: I don't think you could ask more of a $360.00 rifle, and a $1000 rifle probably won't shoot 3x smaller groups. Didn't you say that you barely shot MOA with that rifle?
Sheeessssttt! I shoot 3x smaller groups with a $350.00 rifle,( when I don't screw it up)
I was hoping for some better news on it, maybe with some tweaking and good scope mounts and rings, and good glass, handloaded ammo, maybe then we'll get some tight groups with this rifle.
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Old June 8, 2012, 06:06 PM   #22
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Quote:
That's kinda funny,,,quote from statik: I don't think you could ask more of a $360.00 rifle, and a $1000 rifle probably won't shoot 3x smaller groups. Didn't you say that you barely shot MOA with that rifle?
Sheeessssttt! I shoot 3x smaller groups with a $350.00 rifle,( when I don't screw it up)
So you're saying that your $350 rifle shoots better than .33" at 100yds? Congratulations man, don't dare sell it! I will say that no one should expect .33MOA out of any factory rifle and definitely not at this price point.

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Old June 8, 2012, 07:36 PM   #23
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Rifle

Don't have one but have heard very good things about them. But we can go get a Mossberg MVP in .223 and a S&W Gov from Gunsmoke gunshop in Colorado for ready the cheap unbelievable price of $8000.00 bucks for that money should run down there and get several. What a crook.
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Old June 9, 2012, 08:17 AM   #24
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Thanx Statik, I guess, really, I am pretty lucky, the rifle I'm talking about is a Savage 110, .270 win., and before I pillar-bedded it I developed an awesome handload for it, and shot a group at one hundred yds, that was right at 1/4 moa.
There is a thread I posted this attachment about it called "Whats your best reload for the .270 Winchester).
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Last edited by hooligan1; June 9, 2012 at 08:25 AM.
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Old June 9, 2012, 03:26 PM   #25
angel71rs
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Shot my American in 308 for the 1st time today, very happy! It was kind if windy, but it was coming in almost directly from behind, just slightly from my right. Wind started getting progressively worse, was shooting cheapy 150gr FMJ to get it close. By the time I was ready to break out the goody Federal Matchking 168gr BTHPs, the wind was starting to kick up the dust.

Had to time shots between gusts, but managed to get 3 good rounds off at 100 yds. 1st one was high, made a correction to bring it down, got off two more shots. Pic:



edit: detailed review here:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/show...51#post5109851

Last edited by angel71rs; June 9, 2012 at 05:21 PM.
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