PDA

View Full Version : Ruger aficionados please help!


RPSmith
January 29, 2010, 03:35 PM
My friend has a Ruger M77 in 7mm. He has had it glass-bedded professionally and also tuned and lightened the trigger professionally. He has a Leupold Vari-X III scope on it and has kept the rifle clean and cased since he purchased it new.

He cannot get the rifle to group better than 2-2.5 MOA no matter what ammo he uses. He's gone through every weight and brand and they just don't seem to come together. I have a sub-MOA rifle that I can shoot sub MOA out past 200 yards and I can't get better groups either.

Is this what he should expect from this rifle? It seems to both of us that he should be getting a little more out of it.

We have checked the scope mounts, the crown, the bolt face, and the bore and nothing seems out of place.

I was running this problem by a pretty knowledgeable friend and he said that the 'word 'round the campfire' was that Ruger used their machining tools a little longer than they should. If a reamer was spec'd to last for 10 throats, they used them for 15 (for example, I don't know if the numbers are real or if he was just illustrating the point).

If you got one of the early ones, you got a good rifle, if not...it doesn't group. He says that he has run into this several times and what he found supported the theory.

I hate unfounded rumors and do not want to be spreading them.

Has anyone else heard of this? Does anyone else know what the problem could be? We've gone out to the range on calm days with chrono's, scopes, wind flags, the whole bit and still can't get any better that 2-2.5 MOA.

Please help. Thank you.

340gr
January 29, 2010, 04:10 PM
i had a ruger m77 in 7mm rem mag as well and could not get better than 3.0 moa at 100yards!
a respected local gunsmith told me more or less the same story about excesive tooling use i traded the gun off for a weatherby sub moa .300mag though i am a ruger man i have been nothing but pleased with my weatherby.
hope this helps.

Jimro
January 29, 2010, 04:38 PM
2.5 MOA is "in spec" for a Ruger m77.

Two more tricks to try.

First try pressure bedding the barrel under the stock forend. Bring a pack of playing cards, and add a card at a time until the groups tighten up or you can't add any more cards.

The only other trick I can think of to tighten groups on a rifle with a loose chamber is to neck size only the brass and start reloading. If you can't tune the rifle to a load, tune the load to the rifle.

Jimro

James R. Burke
January 29, 2010, 05:11 PM
I been using mostly the Ruger No 1 A Light Sproters. I reload so that may be solving some problems. But I never had the make your talking about. All mine have been great right out of the box. The two myself and wife have know are the .243 and 30-06, both will shoot five shot groups under 1" at 100 yards all day long. I suspect a younger person with better eyes would even do better. They both wear the Leupold century limited edition scopes. 3x9x40 and like I said never had a problem. We both get deer ever year unless we dont see anything worth to shoot at or bad palcement then we leave them walk. When reloading there does not seem like alot of extra chamber length they all been pretty close, I have got them closer but not that much. I use to have the Ruger No 1 Topical in a .416 Rem mag. For a big bore it shot pretty good groups, but after about ten shoots that was it for me. Most my freinds would not even try it, and they were twice my size. Only one friend did, and he really liked it. Lucky I reload he ran me out of ammo. He must have shoot it tewnty five times.

fisherman66
January 29, 2010, 05:23 PM
I was running this problem by a pretty knowledgeable friend and he said that the 'word 'round the campfire' was that Ruger used their machining tools a little longer than they should.

Wilson and Douglas were contract barrel makers for Ruger back in the tang safety days. Ruger eventually let the contract expire for the reasons you mentioned and brought in their own cold hammer forging barrel line. I can't remember the dates off hand.

If your bud's barrel was bedded and floated he's missing the pressure point. I've never been a fan of barrel floating until all other remedies have been explored since one gives up the pressure point. Many moons ago Art mentioned using wax paper folded many times as a pressure point replacement option. He might ought to consider this option.

RPSmith
January 29, 2010, 08:00 PM
Wilson and Douglas were contract barrel makers for Ruger back in the tang safety days.

Please refresh me (I'm a Remington guy).

Is the tang safety the 'thumb' safety? before they went to the trigger safety?

Thanks for all your suggestions so far, we'll try the pressure shimming.

2.5 MOA is "in spec" for a Ruger m77.

That would be a shame.

cole k
January 29, 2010, 08:57 PM
Ruger has been making their own barrels for over 20 years now.

I once had a borrowed post–64 Winchester back in the late '60's that wouldn't group better than 6” at a 100 yards. I was told by Winchester that it was within their spec's.

the 60's and 70's I killed a lot of game with rifles that wouldn't group better that 3-4” at a 100 yards.

In the last 6 years or so I have bought 4 Rugers, a M77 .25-06, a No.1A .257 Roberts and No. 1B .270 Weatherby, and a Hawkeye .30-06, all shot 1.25” groups or better at 100 yards the first time at the range with factory ammo. After a little trigger work and handloads, all 4 shot sub-MOA.

I think your friend has a shooter problem. Maybe a better recoil pad would help.

cole k
January 29, 2010, 09:44 PM
RP, I will also suggest that you have your friend back off a quarter turn on the action screws and put a business card between the barrel and the forearm pressure point.

jmr40
January 29, 2010, 10:08 PM
Is this the tang safety 77 or the MK-II 77? As others have said Ruger did not make their own barrels until they dropped the original 77 and went to the MK-II. Prior to that accuracy could range from match grade to pretty bad depending on the quality of the barrel. The rifles made since the early '90's are better. The heavy triggers on the MK-II's limit accuracy somewhat, but once corrected most Rugers shoot pretty well.

mrawesome22
January 29, 2010, 10:22 PM
I would make sure that copper build up isn't the culprit.

RPSmith
January 29, 2010, 10:58 PM
I appreciate all of your input.

I don't think that copper fouling is it. He keeps the rifle clean and protected and has since day one.

The rifle, I believe, is more than twenty years old. It is an M77 and not a Mark II. I hate to say it, but that could indicate that he got a bad barrel.

the 60's and 70's I killed a lot of game with rifles that wouldn't group better that 3-4” at a 100 yards.

I respect that Cole. It's not that this rifle doesn't have a good history (it does! a deer, elk, and antelope). It's just that my friend wants to be able to have confidence making a long range (400 yds.) shot. With a 2.5 MOA rifle, it becomes a question of ethics and not one of accuracy. He was hoping to dial in the accuracy a little more.

The pressure shimming seems to be the next thing we'll try.

Thank you to all.

mrawesome22
January 29, 2010, 11:02 PM
If it's 20yrs old, I'd definitely check for copper fouling. Hell, it may just be shot out and needs a new barrel.

Jimro
January 29, 2010, 11:12 PM
well a good scrubbing never hurts, but also try shooting groups at 200 yards. I've had an MOA load at 100 go to 0.75 MOA at 200. Remember, 2 MOA at 100 is only an 8 inch spread at 400. If your friend can do it consistently then ethics shouldn't be offended.

Jimro

LukeA
January 29, 2010, 11:37 PM
Unless he's cleaning the bore with a copper solvent, there's probably a buildup of copper.

GeauxTide
January 30, 2010, 12:19 AM
Agree with the shimming; however, you mentioned using a chrono. What was the ES and SD of the loads you used? Any time I can get below 40fps ES, the load is usually an inch or below. I've loaded for 4 different 7mm Mag rifles and they've all been shooters. I've got two new 77s (280 and 260)and they are sub moa.

warbirdlover
January 30, 2010, 01:04 AM
I have a Ruger M77 Mk II all-weather .300 WM. It is sub-MOA at 100 yards and I think I got that one good one made a week. And the barrel is NOT free floated.

Stick a LimbSaver De-Resonator on it and watch it group. Those things work from what I've read on reviews.

Abel
January 30, 2010, 09:10 AM
I once had a borrowed post–64 Winchester back in the late '60's that wouldn't group better than 6” at a 100 yards. I was told by Winchester that it was within their spec's.

the 60's and 70's I killed a lot of game with rifles that wouldn't group better that 3-4” at a 100 yards.


Yep. There's a bunch of great used rifles out there that wind up in gun shops & pawn shops because they won't print a clover leaf at 100 yards. Perfectly serviceable rifles, that with a little tweakage could probably do 1.5-2". That is perfectly acceptable for a hunting rifle that will only be shot at game within 325 yards.

LukeA
January 30, 2010, 09:24 AM
Stick a LimbSaver De-Resonator on it and watch it group. Those things work from what I've read on reviews.

I'd save the $20 and put some folded aluminum foil between the stock and barrel (pressure point). It's the same thing.

fisherman66
January 30, 2010, 10:30 AM
If the bore is filled with copper, electrolysis is one of the most effective ways to remove it. I'd use a two or three "C" or "D" batteries in-line instead of a wall plug in. Done with just a little judicious reasoning it works without any risk to the rifling. I watched a neighbor use electrolysis to clean a rusty motorcycle tank and a battery charger at 12 volts and it ate through the tank (which was very rusty and might have been beyond salvage anyhow). Seal the breach off really well with an empty cartridge and a layer or two of teflon tape and tape the muzzle together with a funnel and enough electrical tape to prevent leakage. It will foam and overflow a little, so use a large enough funnel.

http://www.sksboards.com/smf/index.php?topic=31740.0

LukeA
January 30, 2010, 11:11 AM
If the bore is filled with copper, electrolysis is one of the most effective ways to remove it. I'd use a two or three "C" or "D" batteries in-line instead of a wall plug in. Done with just a little judicious reasoning it works without any risk to the rifling. I watched a neighbor use electrolysis to clean a rusty motorcycle tank and a battery charger at 12 volts and it ate through the tank (which was very rusty and might have been beyond salvage anyhow). Seal the breach off really well with an empty cartridge and a layer or two of teflon tape and tape the muzzle together with a funnel and enough electrical tape to prevent leakage. It will foam and overflow a little, so use a large enough funnel.

http://www.sksboards.com/smf/index.php?topic=31740.0


I'm pretty sure that won't remove any copper fouling from the barrel. The current is going in the wrong direction. It will remove metal from the electrode rod and apply it to the barrel. I don't believe the process will ever remove metal fouling from the bore.

I use ammonia. Seal one end of the bore, fill it with ammonia, leave it for several hours, rinse out the now-blue solution with water, remove the water, replace with a thin film of oil. I under stand KG12 works really well as well, but I've never tried it.

fisherman66
January 30, 2010, 11:19 AM
I'm pretty sure that won't remove any copper fouling from the barrel. The current is going in the wrong direction.

Sure looks like copper is coating the rod to me. Did you even open the link?


http://www.thelightningwaltz.com/barrelclean4.jpg
http://www.thelightningwaltz.com/barrelclean5.jpg
http://www.thelightningwaltz.com/barrelclean2.jpg

LukeA
January 30, 2010, 12:08 PM
That's rust and powder fouling. If there was ever that much copper fouling in the barrel, the rifle would squib every round.

Speaking of not paying attention to posts, how could I tell which way the current flowed without opening the link? Where did you talk about polarity? Since you made zero mention of polarity in your post, there's a decent chance that you don't know anything about it. That's why your friend's process ate through his tank. I have a lot of trouble believing the claims of someone who may or may not understand the most basic concepts of the process he's promoting.

fisherman66
January 30, 2010, 12:19 PM
Speaking of not paying attention to posts, how could I tell which way the current flowed without opening the link? Where did you talk about polarity?

If there was no mention of polarity, how'd you surmise that the rod would be deposited onto the barrel bore? The link gives the information needed to complete to process. Feel free to PM me if you feel the need to flame any more.

James R. Burke
January 30, 2010, 01:10 PM
A good cleaning can never hurt, and always stay up on it. Once a copper buid us starts it picks it up real fast. Easier to keep it clean each time your out. I went to Butch bore shine, and dropped the Hoppe's. The guy that sold it to me said if it did not work better than the Hoppe's copper remover he would give me back my money. Well I am still using it, and it works great! There are alot of real good one's out there, and I am sure lots of folks have there favorite.

LukeA
January 30, 2010, 01:39 PM
If there was no mention of polarity, how'd you surmise that the rod would be deposited onto the barrel bore? The link gives the information needed to complete to process. Feel free to PM me if you feel the need to flame any more.

You're funny. It's because I can read!

Pour in your solution (thoughts on this later) and attach the positive lead to the bbl and the negative lead to the electrode.

Talk about not reading links...

Shorthair
January 30, 2010, 01:45 PM
A 20 year old 7mm Remington Mag would most likely have both excessive copper fouling and throat erosion. A borescope should be able to pick up both issues. All else fails, it might just need a new barrel, which I would be able to justify if it were my rifle.

uncyboo
January 30, 2010, 02:01 PM
OP could you clarify something for me please? Has the rifle ever shot well? Your post said he bought the rifle new. All these suggestions about copper and throat erosion would indicate a degredation in accuracy. Is this the case, or has it never shot well at all?

Scorch
January 30, 2010, 02:18 PM
When I worked in as a smith, the standard fix for Ruger 77s that would not group right was:
1- unscrew the barrel.
2- Recrown the barrel.
3- Set the barrel back 1 turn (occasionally 2 turns, but that was rare).
4- Recut the chamber (Ruger used to cut ungodly long throats)
5- Screw the barrel back into the receiver.
Total cost in 1985 was around $75. This usually cured accuracy issues.

If the customer was really picky or really expected great accuracy, we would also recommend
6- Do a trigger job.
7- Glass bed the front and rear of the receiver in the stock.

Back then, all this would cost about $75-$150, depending on how many of these steps the customer wanted to pay for. If they decided to forego the cost of gunsmithing and shipped the rifle back to Ruger for $30, they would often get the rifle back with a note saying accuracy was within specs. So, spend $75 to fix the problem or $30 to have Ruger tell you you don't have a problem?

Abel
January 30, 2010, 03:38 PM
I would start at the new trigger. Puttin' chewin' gum wrappers under the barrel isn't really a fix. Glass bedding is though.

RPSmith
January 31, 2010, 10:40 PM
OP could you clarify something for me please? Has the rifle ever shot well? Your post said he bought the rifle new. All these suggestions about copper and throat erosion would indicate a degredation in accuracy. Is this the case, or has it never shot well at all?

No, the rifle has always shot this way.


If the customer was really picky or really expected great accuracy, we would also recommend
6- Do a trigger job.
7- Glass bed the front and rear of the receiver in the stock.

Had both of those done.

In regards to the heated discussion about copper fouling, it is not an issue. The gun has been cleaned with copper solvent bore cleaner since its purchase. The first thing I did when I looked at for him was clean it thoroughly. There wasn't any need - the gun was immaculate. Also, I asked my friend to approximate the number of rounds fired in its lifetime and he said less than 100. That would also debunk the 'shot-out throat' theory.

I like the idea of setting the barrel back (we haven't measured the throat), but honestly at this point I think he's considering relegating this rifle to a sub-350 yd. deer/elk gun and getting a Remington 700 for the long distance antelope.

Thanks for all the advice.

crimsondave
January 31, 2010, 10:43 PM
2.0-2.5 MOA is way better than the last 77 I had.