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Arch Stanton

New Ruger Precision Rifle

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A walk through a gun show a few weeks ago cost me.

I got to fondle a new Ruger Precision Rilfe. They were not offering any sort of deal or I would have bought the darn thing right then and there. I walked away, much to the surprise of my wife, but I told her when I could put a deal together on one I was gonna go for it, and she didn't say no...and my Local Gun Store guy took care of me.

Below is a pic of it is as of today, mocked up before I pull it down to clean and lubricate it and get ready to start working it up at the range.

First impressions...

This is a ,308 NATO rifle, bolt action. It accepts many goodies from the AR15-AR10 world. In ,308 it comes with a 20 inch barrel and a Ruger muzzle break.  It comes with 2 10 round P-Mag magazines. It is a pretty slick design, I think Ruger has a serious hit on their hands. The factory two stage adjustable trigger is really nice. Not a Timney but really nice. Breaks very cleanly, factory set at about 2.5 lbs. The rifle folds at the stock for storage, but cannot be fired from that position. This is a heavy rifle, and while it can be used for hunting, I wouldn't want to walk 10 miles with it. Reports are coming in that the .308 is workable easily to 800 yards, and guys are getting it to 1000 yards as well, but the 6.5 Creedmore version would be an option if that was the intended range. The barrel Ruger supplies is a very accurate unit for a factory offering, but they traded accuracy for life, and at about 1200 rounds people are reporting the groups start to grow.

All of the aftermarket has jumped on these rifles, though, and I fully intend to shoot this barrel til it starts showing problems then buy a 24 inch model from LRI. Around here I will be limited to 200 yards or so, but this sucker is gonna get used. It is going to be a shooter, not a safe queen.

If I can ding steel at 650 yards I will be happy. Once or twice a year a group of guys I worked with go out to the hinterlands and call in Coyotes. I am hoping to be able to reach out and touch them a bit further away than the others who are using 5.56 rifles.. :D  I may do a bit of deer hunting with it as well, dunno yet.

I am not fond of the Key Mod style handguard and that will probably go away, the plastic pistol grip is leaving as soon as I choose a replacement. Aftermarket support is already amazing.

It is wearing a Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50 Mil EBR-1 scope in a one piece Aadmount scope mount, and has a Harris Bipod on the front end. On first view I am not overwhelmed with the muzzle break and that may go away too.

These rifles list for $1599. Don't let that scare you, they are selling for a lot less if you look around. $1199ish....some guys say less than a grand but that is a steal.

Ruger's website has all the scoop....but if you are into this sort of thing, dont go there, and dont handle one....it'll gitcha, just like it did me....

 

first mockup.jpg

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Nice... not my cup o' tea but if I were looking for a bolt action .308 that sure seems like a nice price point for a quality rifle (just assuming on the quality side, I've had a lot of Rugers over the years and never been disappointed).

Please update this thread with details, observations...etc..

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Thanks for the reply.I

I thought there might be more interest in it but thats OK. I will keep it updated for you.

It does take AR style grips, and the stock ones are too small for my hand and too cheesy for taste, LOL. I have always used Magpul grips on other rifles but after handling a new Ergo 4045 I am going for one of those. Having done a bit of reading on sites dedicated to long range shooting it appears the best bullet for up to 1k yards in these rifles is the 168 grn. HPBT. The two rounds that have the most support are the Federal Gold Medal Match with the Sierra bullet, and the Nosler Competition with their own round. I am going to start with the Federal option.

While the idea of breaking in a new rifle isn't as complex with a bolt as it is a semi auto, I still believe in a barrel break in procedure, and will do that with this rifle as well. IT is admittedly a topic of never-ending disagreement, but it has worked for me for a long time. I still need to do a serious cleaning and bore sight the scope but after that and once the grip arrives it will be time to shoot.

I will let you know how it goes...in fact, if I wind up taking it over the hill to my son's place (he lives in Sparks) and we wander out in to the hills to shoot it I will send you a PM, if you want to tag along and put some rounds downrange...

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What makes you say it's a 'niche' rifle?  From what I see, and I've never handled one, it looks like Ruger's take on a bolt action AR-10, which has its good and bad aspects.  I think it would be fun to get one of those and then work up some loads for it.  Looking forward to a range report or two with that girl.  I think I'd start with ~42 grains of IMR-4064 with that 168 bullet seated to somewhere in the 2.75-2.80" range in LC brass.  I suspect you could work it up into the area of 45 grains, assuming no pressure issues show up.  She might even be a serious hoot with some 130gr OTM bullets on top of 46 grains of the same powder, if not more. 

Personally, I'll stick with the Remington 700 actions for most of my bolt action rifles.  The 700 Police I built is a tack driver.  The 700 BDL in 30-06 is a meat-killer.  Only downside is the light barrel contour means 4 or 5 quick rounds and she's done for a while.  The oscillations on those thin barrels are insane and border on unworkable, but then again it's not built as a match target rifle.  That Ruger barrel looks like it's a mid-weight, so hopefully it can send a couple of magazines' worth downrange before things get wonky. 

Of course mirage is the ultimate enemy and that's a tough one to fight. :-/

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In a way all firearms are designed for a niche of some sort, this one fills a need I don't need to fill. 

I do however enjoy hearing about firearms, first hand experiences.. keeping up with what's going on.. never know I might get the long distance shooting bug at some point.

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Ed I am a believer in the 700 as well, I have a couple that I cherish, they have been in the family for a long time, but they are expensive to shoot. I fire 5 rounds to confirm sighting and then go hunting with the 7. One is 30-06 and the other 7mm Rem Mag. The 06 is a very special rifle, my father bought it in 1970 for local deer hunting, he took a blank stock and hand carved it. The other is a 1972 7mm Rem Mag BDL Custom Deluxe. I do use it for hunting.

The .308 is a capable round and I bought this one to replace a 700 that I played with for a couple years, I wanted something I could work up at my own pace, these things are so modular that you can mix and match. When I wear the barrel out I will buy an LRI HBAR for it.

I will let you guys know when we get it on the range.

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Don't they make 700 in .308? <- some models it seems...

ack.. just had to stop over at the Remington site.. now I want a 700 XCR Tactical in .338 lapua.. then for sure I'd have to get back into reloading.. like I need another hobby ...

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4 hours ago, braindead0 said:

In a way all firearms are designed for a niche of some sort, this one fills a need I don't need to fill. 

I do however enjoy hearing about firearms, first hand experiences.. keeping up with what's going on.. never know I might get the long distance shooting bug at some point.

I'm not sure I agree.  Some firearms are designed to fill a niche.  Others are designed as general purpose tools.  So, I would not let the "all" label pass without contest.  In fairness, though, I think that would deserve its own thread, and would require some field demonstrations.  However, I will offer at least an example to support my opinion.

The Winchester Model 1200 shotgun, in factory form, with a 24" modified choke (fixed) barrel.

That shotgun (though now out of production) adequately fills several roles:

1.  Upland game - with the modified choke barrel, it makes an excellent, fast-swinging upland bird gun for pheasant, grouse, and quail (if you have the shoulder for it).  With a decent high base round, it will also put many cottontails in the stew pot. 

2.  A pig gun - pigs, being pigs, can easily be taken within 50-60 yards with a rifled slug, which for reasons beyond my information, is not impacted by the modified choke.  This tool also works on coyotes if you're good enough to call them in close enough. 

3.  Home defense - the 24" barrel is probably the maximum you would want to try swinging in close quarters, but it is doable, and several local police agencies had Remington   870's with 24" barrels up until 2002-2004, when they went over to 18's and 20's.  The length was adequate for that need, at least.

Where I think "niche" DOES come into play is in the ammunition choice for the above.  Each use may very well call for a different load, which I think is sensible and expected.  Granted, I am the first to know that a data set of '1' does not a fact make.  But I wanted to put the example out there, if only for further consideration of the merits of the original argument/debate.  Hopefully I've done so in a sufficiently respectful manner to avoid ruffling any feathers (not my objective). 

Now, I have never had the fortune to touch off anything in 338 Lapua - 338 Winchester Magnum is the only like-caliber I've had contact with, and I'm sure there are vast differences.  That said, the mere idea of putting rounds downrange does 'trigger' my inner Cave Man. 

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3 hours ago, Arch Stanton said:

Ed I am a believer in the 700 as well, I have a couple that I cherish, they have been in the family for a long time, but they are expensive to shoot. I fire 5 rounds to confirm sighting and then go hunting with the 7. One is 30-06 and the other 7mm Rem Mag. The 06 is a very special rifle, my father bought it in 1970 for local deer hunting, he took a blank stock and hand carved it. The other is a 1972 7mm Rem Mag BDL Custom Deluxe. I do use it for hunting.

The .308 is a capable round and I bought this one to replace a 700 that I played with for a couple years, I wanted something I could work up at my own pace, these things are so modular that you can mix and match. When I wear the barrel out I will buy an LRI HBAR for it.

I will let you guys know when we get it on the range.

Those are two of my favorite chamberings in the 700 family.  As a young boy, I remember dad coming home (I was about 5, so late 1978?) with his brand new Remington 700 BDL in 30-06, topped with a Leupold variable power scope.  The nomenclature has changed, but I think it was a Vari-X model, 3-9x).  The pretty shiny wood, the deep blueing, the gloss of the jet-black scope on top of the whole thing, and that odd jeweled bolt that seemed some some sort of optical illusion.  I knew, some day, I'd have one too.  And now I do.  I think the build quality of mine is not as good, but when I do my part and put in my Super Special Favorite Load*, it shoots dimes off the bench, which isn't bad for any factory rifle with nothing done to it. 

My godfather opted for the same rifle in 7 RemMag, at the same time (they went to the old San Francisco Gun Exchange to 'upgrade')  I was 11 or 12 the first time I pulled the trigger on it, and boy howdy did it punish the living crap out of me.  It was just as pretty, but it's longer action and barrel seemed to say "You will respect me so that all game shall fear me."  I still don't own one of those, but it's on "the list". 

I would agree with Brenden, those two rifles ARE niche firearms - they exist to put meat on the table year in, year out.  As long as I make the trips and find the critter, the rifle does it's job. 

* My Super Special Favorite 30-06 Load:  56 grains of IMR-4350, Federal (FC) 30-06 brass, resized to about .001-.002" below chamber headspace, a WLR primer, topped with a Sierra PH 150 grain bullet.  That load is well in the middle of the load data, but it hits a 'node' on most 30-06 22" barrel rifles I've used it in.  I can't explain it, because I don't have the tools and resources to measure the internal ballistics. 

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1 hour ago, desertdog said:

I'm not sure I agree.  Some firearms are designed to fill a niche.  Others are designed as general purpose tools.  So, I would not let the "all" label pass without contest.  In fairness, though, I think that would deserve its own thread, and would require some field demonstrations.  However, I will offer at least an example to support my opinion.

The Winchester Model 1200 shotgun, in factory form, with a 24" modified choke (fixed) barrel.

That shotgun (though now out of production) adequately fills several roles:

1.  Upland game - with the modified choke barrel, it makes an excellent, fast-swinging upland bird gun for pheasant, grouse, and quail (if you have the shoulder for it).  With a decent high base round, it will also put many cottontails in the stew pot. 

2.  A pig gun - pigs, being pigs, can easily be taken within 50-60 yards with a rifled slug, which for reasons beyond my information, is not impacted by the modified choke.  This tool also works on coyotes if you're good enough to call them in close enough. 

3.  Home defense - the 24" barrel is probably the maximum you would want to try swinging in close quarters, but it is doable, and several local police agencies had Remington   870's with 24" barrels up until 2002-2004, when they went over to 18's and 20's.  The length was adequate for that need, at least.

Where I think "niche" DOES come into play is in the ammunition choice for the above.  Each use may very well call for a different load, which I think is sensible and expected.  Granted, I am the first to know that a data set of '1' does not a fact make.  But I wanted to put the example out there, if only for further consideration of the merits of the original argument/debate.  Hopefully I've done so in a sufficiently respectful manner to avoid ruffling any feathers (not my objective). 

Now, I have never had the fortune to touch off anything in 338 Lapua - 338 Winchester Magnum is the only like-caliber I've had contact with, and I'm sure there are vast differences.  That said, the mere idea of putting rounds downrange does 'trigger' my inner Cave Man. 

What it doesn't do is long range or concealed carry.. missed those niches.  Many firearms can fill several roles, depending on configuration..loads, and the person behind it.  There is no one size fits all roles IMO..  If there was everyone would have that one firearm and nothing else.   Perhaps niche was the wrong term, and role would be better.

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If you snoop around on some of the LR shooting sites guys are walking the RPR in .308 out beyond 1000 yards. That is with the stock barrel. My nephew is a retired Army Ranger, MOS sniper. 2nd of the 75th, out of Ft. Lewis Wa. I am quite certain he can take this past 1k. Quite certain, LOL. I don't know of any long guns that are good for CCW, but that is just me, I think "Role" is a better word too.

He has done so with his already, and I am copying his build.  I was a passable shot years back when, and I could get a LEO prepped 700 .308 out there. Did so at Sacramento Valley more than once. I believe this rifle is is the equal to the 700 in accuracy. For the $ you drop in a 700 to step it up this rifle is ahead of the game out of the box, IMHO..

I know the round is capable of getting there and knocking down a critter upon arrival. 175 gr. Nosler in hand loads. My limitation now is my eyesight and my age. But I am thinking I gonna make a run at it when nephew comes down for a week or so. Is the .308 perfect? no. The science of ammunition has come a long way over the past 50 years, but I believe it is still relevant. The improvements in ammo have helped it, too.

That is half the fun for me. Like hot rodding a 4 banger. I also like to dance soda cans at 200 yards with a heavily modded HBAR 10-22 I built.

Anyway I am really enjoying building this piece, I just heard they are now offering a 5.56 version, which is neat but I don't need anymore of those, nor do I want a bolt 5.56. If they go the other way and build a long action I would be most interested. If this one turns out to be as much fun as I think it is going to be I might try to sneak another one past the wife at some point. There re only 3 firearms I still really NEED to fill out my list tho,

1) Sig Sauer P220 MSE, (I carried Sig Sauer semi-auto pistols for the vast majority of my career. I carry them now as a retiree. I was a FTO or FTO Sgt. for our dept for many years and never saw a weapon related failure on duty or in training at our cop shop for all those years. The one I've listed a high end rig, hard to find and pricey, but I want one) Here is a link if you are a Sig fan.

Sig Sauer 220R5-45-MSE P220 Match Elite 8+1 45ACP 5" $1,499.99 SHIPS FREE

2) A Navy Colt, a real live genuine article Civil War era Navy Colt, just for the historical value.

3) and a legit 1873 Winchester. Same reason as above. Probably never shoot either.

How 'bout you guys? what is on your bucket list?

Glad we got this conversation rolling..enjoying it.

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I had one in 6.5, I sold it. Its a great gun, I just don't like 6.5 haha. I shoot long range all the time (both with irons and scopes) usually 500-1,760 yards. I used to compete all the time but grew tired of always travelling on my days off. 

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It is, from what I hear, a grind to travel. I wouldn't do it competitively at that level. I already have enough expensive hobbies and don''t want to push it that far. There are a lot of 6.5 Creedmore fan boys out there, you probably didn't have too much trouble offing it.

Regarding the Dixie Valley thread, will let you know next time we go by. Spent a lot of $ at Harmon over the years. Always very nice to us.

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The one firearm I would take above all others, given a choice, would be a Purdey side-by-side.  Now I don't think Danny O'Brien is still kicking (or engraving), but something from the mid-70's in 12-bore, that was touched by his hand, would do just fine.  I know they come up for sale now and then, so all I need is about $80,000 and nothing better to do with it. 

Every time I go kick up ring-necks with the old man, I dream about carrying one of those over my shoulder.  Of course my shotguns get wet, muddy, kicked by the dog, slide around inside the scull boat, propped against barbed wire fences, rested against stumps, rained on, bled on, and generally see a very hard (but unavoidable) life.  I would have no problem doing the same with a Purdey, to the great horror of many. 

When I die, if 'it' looks unused, I failed somewhere along the line.

 

 

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Ed I have only a few I've never fired, they are family heirlooms I inherited from my Father, and they will go to my sons. Other than those few, I am with you, they were built to be used. Someday, if we are sitting around a campfire, I will tell you the story of a very special Model 70 30-06 Spr.:)

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My dad has a 1898 Winchester 38-55 carbine, a Colt Peacemaker Sheriff model (4" barrel, front site never filed) forget the year on that one, and a 12ga damascus barrel shotgun old enough it used brass shells.  We've fired them often, obviously hand loads designed for them.  Last time the shotgun was fired was at a 4wd run in the 70's that ended in a party/turkey shoot.  Shoulda seen the guys on the line when he pulled that out, and the cloud from the blackpowder.. priceless ;-)

funny story, the holster the peacemaker was found in... is worth about twice as much as the firearm or was when they were last appraised.  Some famous holster maker in Mexico, and leather being what it is doesn't tend to last.  It was found in Castaic, CA while my great uncle was digging holes for power poles.. just churned up by the auger.

As we have no kids (and no intention)..  I'll likely suggest my dad sell them or donate to a museum, only thing I would do with them is load 'em up for cowboy action shooting and try that for fun.

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I have several AR platforms, But my now favorite is the ar15 Bushmaster in 300 Blackout. My velocity is very near the 308. Cartridges are easily made. I generally shoot 150 grain soft points.

dig it

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5 hours ago, dig it said:

I have several AR platforms, But my now favorite is the ar15 Bushmaster in 300 Blackout. My velocity is very near the 308. Cartridges are easily made. I generally shoot 150 grain soft points.

dig it

You're getting near 308 Win speeds with 150 grain projectiles in 300 BLK?  I haven't seen a safe way to do that with such a heavy projectile, but if you have a handload, please do share the data!  I was pondering 110-130gr for my loads when I get to that point, but I need to buy dies first.  I'm lagging so far behind on stuff lately....

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ED,

 OOPS, I misread my own notes. I am getting 2065-2075 with 150 and 17.2 lil gun. This is in a Bushmaster 16" 1.7 300 blk.

In my Ruger American ranch gun with the same bullet I am less than the AR.

chuck m

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Ah, OK, that makes more sense.  I was going to say, most of the data I've seen with 150 in 300BLK suggests it is similar to 30-30 Win as far as external ballistics go.

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