The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Hide > The Art of the Rifle: Bolt, Lever, and Pump Action

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old January 6, 2019, 12:48 PM   #1
the possum
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 6, 2004
Location: Southern Illinois
Posts: 552
Ruger American: standard vs. predator?

I've been kicking around the idea of buying another gun I don't need. I'm just getting tempted by all these cheap entry level bolt actions, since so many guys rave about them.

If I do get one, it will be in .308, since I already have two other rifles in this caliber and would like to semi-standardize my ammo inventory.

What would I use it for? Well, mostly for fun. Long range plinking- dirt clods out in the fields at 500 yards and beyond. Punching paper in the back yard. Blasting stuff at the junk pile. Maybe a coyote if one happens by. (Can't use rifles on deer here in Illannoy.) I have a badly bubba'ed Mosin Nagant for this pupose now, and a Ruger would be a direct upgrade. I'd use surplus ammo for blastin', but plan to work up an accurate handload for bench shooting.

I have handled and compared several rifles in a store, like the Mossberg Patriot, Savage Axis, TC Compass, and Ruger American, and like the Ruger best overall. But I'm still torn between the standard model American vs. the Predator.

Reason is mainly because I LOVE the feel and balance of that light long barrel on the standard model. But I would rather have the better magazines of the Predator. And I'm not sure how different I could expect them to behave in the accuracy department. I'm assuming the heavier barrel on the Predator would not be affected by heat as much, after firing a string of shots. But does the thinner barrel on the standard model really have any problems here? Any owners that could contrast accuracy for me?
the possum is offline  
Old January 6, 2019, 05:57 PM   #2
bobn
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 30, 2006
Location: midwest
Posts: 1,047
I am on my second predator. first in 243 second in 6 creedmoor.
….. in the past I have played the several guns in same chambering. done with that. more than likely you will have either chambering problems or whats accurate and safe in one is not in the others. anyway they work and shoot well. bobn
bobn is offline  
Old January 6, 2019, 08:28 PM   #3
jpx2rk
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 29, 2015
Posts: 323
DO NOT GET THE STANDARD RUGER. Barrel is pencil thin, will heat up quickly and start walking on you. Go with the Predator.

If you want to take one shot, wait for the barrel to cool (5 min) then repeat. Mine is a great one shot cold bore on target rifle, just don't try to shoot groups of more than one shot.
jpx2rk is offline  
Old January 6, 2019, 08:32 PM   #4
TruthTellers
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 22, 2016
Posts: 3,587
I normally say go with the less expensive option, but for the American, get the Predator. For the extra $70-100 it costs, you're getting a threaded barrel, you're getting a thicker barrel, a shorter barrel in .308 (a shorter, thicker barrel is the more rigid barrel and will group tighter), a one piece rail for optics, and the AICS magazines are better than the rotary mags, hold more than the rotary mags, are more common than the rotary mags, and cost the same or less than the rotary mags.

With all that you're getting, you can make the Predator to fit whatever role you want. A budget scout rifle? Yup, slap a red dot and a 10 rd mag in and you've got it. A long range rifle? Scope, 3 or 5 round mag, and a muzzle brake and you're all set.

With the standard American, you get an unspectacular budget rifle. The Predator is still a budget bolt action, but you get so much in return it's worth the money.

I'm debating whether I want the Predator or the S&W M&P10 for my .308 rifle.
__________________
"We always think there's gonna be more time... then it runs out."

Last edited by TruthTellers; January 6, 2019 at 08:48 PM.
TruthTellers is offline  
Old January 6, 2019, 09:43 PM   #5
jaysouth
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 27, 2001
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 763
The extra cost for the predator is more than justified by the magazine option and heavier barrel.
jaysouth is offline  
Old January 7, 2019, 08:40 AM   #6
ilmonster
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 4, 2009
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 176
Also would go Predator for the heavier barrel (but not crazy heavy) and magazine system. Not much more cost, and less likely to walk when heated up if doing target shooting. Let us know what you decide!
ilmonster is offline  
Old January 7, 2019, 09:47 AM   #7
jmr40
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 15, 2008
Location: Georgia
Posts: 10,295
Get the Predator and get the one that takes AI magazines. The cost of the rifles is the same, the cost of spare magazines is the same. The AI style magazines are far, far better. Ruger should drop the 4 round rotary magazines on all of those rifles and convert them all to use the AI mags.

They feed and function just fine I've had 2 of the rotary magazines break recently when dropped on a carpeted floor when loaded with ammo. Ruger will gladly and promptly replace them. But not something I trust.

If someone has a short action and doesn't want to buy another that uses the AI magazine buy a spare 450 BM magazine. They function great with 308 class cartridges and are a much better magazine than the 4 round rotary magazines.

https://ruger.com/products/americanR...ets/26974.html

The supplied 3 round mag doesn't protrude far enough to be problem. Even the 5 round version isn't bad. I have a 10 round mag, but wouldn't want to carry it much. Fine for range use.

Magpul makes a 5 round magazine that can be found cheaper than the Ruger version and there is a tab that can be broken off the bottom of the follower to convert it to 6 rounds. Some places have a 5 round limit for hunting and people living in those states can leave the tab in place.
__________________
"If you're still doing things the same way you were doing them 10 years ago, you're doing it wrong"

Winston Churchill
jmr40 is offline  
Old January 7, 2019, 11:44 AM   #8
T. O'Heir
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 13, 2002
Location: Canada
Posts: 12,458
"...at 500 yards and beyond..." That says, heavy barrel. However, the Predator's barrel, at 18", is kind of short. Isn't that heavy either. That $500ish without sights your budget range?
"...and will group tighter..." Nope. Barrel length has very little to do with accuracy. Has to do with velocity though.
__________________
Spelling and grammar count!
T. O'Heir is offline  
Old January 7, 2019, 04:01 PM   #9
std7mag
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 23, 2013
Location: Central Taxylvania..
Posts: 3,186
Well T.O. ypur partially, well somewhat, about half....
No, your wrong...

The simple physics of it is that a shorter barrel, is more inherently stiff. Thereby creating more repeatable accuracy.
This is not to say that a long thin barrel cannot be accurate, even at ranges out to 1,000 yards or more. Just not as repeatable over a string of shots.

While a long barrel will give more velocity, if it's a heavy barrel also the added velocity will help accuracy in reduced flight time of the bullet to reach it's objective. Hence giving the bullet less time to be deflected by wind.
This is usually compensated for by using a heavier bullet with a higher ballistic coefficient.

Examples would be akin to shooting a Weatherby magnum with a 26" barrel, vs a Savage 10FP with a 20" barrel.
Both are plenty accurate, but the 10FP is more repeatable

To The Possum,
I'd go with the Predator, for the reasons others have previously stated.
Heavier barrel.
One piecs scope rail.
Magazine system. .
__________________
When our own government declares itself as "tyrannical", where does that leave us??!!
std7mag is offline  
Old January 7, 2019, 10:09 PM   #10
FrankenMauser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 25, 2008
Location: In the valley above the plain
Posts: 12,670
jmr40 nailed it.
Get the heavier barrel.
Get the better magazines.

There is no downside, compromise, or sacrifice.
__________________
Don't even try it. It's even worse than the internet would lead you to believe.
FrankenMauser is offline  
Old January 8, 2019, 11:27 AM   #11
the possum
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 6, 2004
Location: Southern Illinois
Posts: 552
Seems like the responses are unanimous. The Predator it is. If I decide to follow through with it, of course. It doesn't have the same feel and balance as the skinny barrel version, and I'd rather have at least 20" of barrel length, but if the difference in performance is that big a deal, I'll gladly defer to all your experience.

Quote:
In the past I have played the several guns in same chambering. [I'm] done with that. More than likely you will have either chambering problems, or what's accurate and safe in one is not in the others.
That's why I said "semi" standardized. I can use the same reloading dies, and likely share bullets and powder. And I'll stay within SAAMI standards, so even if a given load isn't the most accurate in one rifle, at least I can still use it in a pinch, unlike a totally different caliber.
the possum is offline  
Old January 8, 2019, 12:57 PM   #12
Tallest
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 23, 2016
Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
Posts: 414
Quote:
Originally Posted by the possum View Post
Seems like the responses are unanimous. The Predator it is. If I decide to follow through with it, of course. It doesn't have the same feel and balance as the skinny barrel version, and I'd rather have at least 20" of barrel length, but if the difference in performance is that big a deal, I'll gladly defer to all your experience.



That's why I said "semi" standardized. I can use the same reloading dies, and likely share bullets and powder. And I'll stay within SAAMI standards, so even if a given load isn't the most accurate in one rifle, at least I can still use it in a pinch, unlike a totally different caliber.
It is unanimous, and FWIW, I agree. I have both, and this thread lead me to discover that they released the 7mm-08 in the Predator, so I'm going to have to have me that!

I have the Standard American in 7mm-08 and the Predator in .223. Both are great, but I like the predator the best over all.

I have also found that the optic in place makes a big difference on the balance of the weight, so you may still end up getting a good heft even with the heavier front end.
__________________
Matthew

"This is God's universe, and he has a plan. You might think that you have a better plan, but you don't have a universe." - Dr. J.V. McGee
Tallest is offline  
Old February 15, 2021, 11:17 PM   #13
Mashburn82
Junior Member
 
Join Date: February 15, 2021
Posts: 1
Sorry but I have to bump this thread because someone was hyping the predator up more than the standard. And was pointing to this as their reasoning.

First it is true since the predator has a thicker, heavier barrel. It can withstand several more rounds through it. But for hunting that's extremely rare too be putting 5+ shots out of the barrel.

With it being heavier, it has less kick..... That's usually why people hype it up. And it's because they're a sissy and freaking the standard would make them cry.

Second. The 4" longer barrel helps with velocity. Which leads to the important thing this OP was saying (he wanted to shoot over 500 yards). And that's where the standard comes in.

Can the predator hit the target back to back at 1000 yards. Yes. But can a standard put it through the same hole back to back to back. Yes..... That's where the difference is.

Other thing not mentioned is the threaded barrel on the predator.

So if your fun is 100-300, predator is the way to go. Because you can unload more, less kick, and the barrel is threaded. And you can push your limits for taking 5 shots and hitting a 1000 yard target maybe 1 or 2 times.

But if you want to show off distance and consistency. The standard is the answer.

Furthermore the standard is obviously the clear winner for hunting game that's further than 300 yards..... I can take an elk down with a LRX 175 grain at 700 yards. But I would not trust the predator to do that. Unless I knew the elk wouldn't move for shooting 5 shots.


Also to the op. If you do get to use the predator for medium game. Get you a 150 grain hornady sst.
Mashburn82 is offline  
Old February 16, 2021, 12:14 AM   #14
MarkCO
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 21, 1998
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 3,118
I have both and the Predator is, like so many have said, worth the extra bones. Shorter barrels are more accurate and that is more important than velocity provided the twist is correct, both the 18" and 22" Predator are twisted 1:10, so pick whichever one you want. You could always jump up to the Hunter version as well...comp and Magpul fully adjustable stock for $200 more.
__________________
Good Shooting, MarkCO
www.CarbonArms.us
MarkCO is online now  
Old February 16, 2021, 06:25 AM   #15
TruthTellers
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 22, 2016
Posts: 3,587
Yeah, the addition of the Hunter with the Magpul stock is a huge improvement over the standard and you can get that Hunter model with a 20 or 22 inch barrel. Of course all those additions increase the cost. I'd still partial to the Predator, I think it checks all the boxes, but I notice that it seems Ruger has dropped the model that uses the AI mags. That would be a dealbreaker.
__________________
"We always think there's gonna be more time... then it runs out."
TruthTellers is offline  
Old February 17, 2021, 02:19 PM   #16
bamaranger
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 9, 2009
Location: North Alabama
Posts: 7,450
.308

I bought a rack blem Predator in .308 with the 18.5" bbl this fall, just before deer season. Bamaboy and I were kicking around in a big local gun store and found it priced right. "You'd be crazy if you didn't buy that!" he says, so I did. I took a Leupold 1.5-4x20mm off another rifle ( an AR, which recieved a red dot), loaded up 50 rds of 150 gr SP's, full length sized with bullets seated to factory spec COAL and went to the range. I left the adjustable trigger alone, it was fine for a rifle that would be a hunter. The rifle has the newer standard follower in its 4 rd box, NOT the rotary mess. Feeds just fine. Shoots good too!

The best 3 rd group went .855". I zeroed the rig just under 2" high and took it on 3 hunts. The short tube and light weight was a real plus on the two AM's I hunted from a ladder stand. The evening I used the climber, the tidy little rifle was again appreciated as I lugged it and the stand the 1/4 mi or so to my spot. That evening I dropped a decent 8 pt at about 35 yds.

The little rifle has displayed such good accuracy that it deserves a scope with a bit more magnification. I'm going to swap a 2-7x33mm off another rifle and put it on the tidy Ruger. The slight increase in bulk should not be an issue, and the bigger bell might add some clarity and brightness. So equipped, it will continue to be an ideal deer rig.
bamaranger is offline  
Old March 9, 2021, 11:08 PM   #17
Andy1
Member
 
Join Date: March 16, 2019
Posts: 65
FYI. The Go Wild series is a version of the Predator model, not the standard model.
Andy1 is offline  
Old March 10, 2021, 12:36 AM   #18
kilotanker22
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 14, 2012
Location: North Central, PA
Posts: 1,624
I have the Go Wild version in 6.5 Creedmoor. Worth the extra coin in my opinion. Shoots well too. Overall it is a pretty nice rifle. Trigger is ok, but not great. it strikes the right balance between weight, length and barrel length.

In my opinion it is superior to the other options with the exception of the hunter
__________________
“We do not seek peace in order to be at war, but we go to war that we may have peace. Be peaceful, therefore, in warring, so that you may vanquish those whom you war against, and bring them to the prosperity of peace.
– St. Augustine
kilotanker22 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:51 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2020 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Page generated in 0.24131 seconds with 10 queries