SR-566 Takedown (courtesy ruger.com)

Ruger’s selling their new SR-556 Takedown for a staggering $2049. In theory (that’s MSRP). In practice, Bud’s Guns sells Ruger ARs for $1350. So we’re still in love with the idea of an AR where you can unscrew the barrel with a simple twist of the wrist, transport the weapon discreetly, screw-in the barrel and have at it (assuming the gun maintains zero). Wait . . .

(courtesy ruger.com)

Only the barrel comes free, meaning you’re shortening the gun by what? Four inches? So it would still be longer than a folding stock AR or AR-pistol with a SB Tactical brace. Or the updated folding pistol-caliber Kel-Tec Sub-2000.

Of course you could fit a Law Tactical Folding Stock Adapter to your SR-556 Takedown for $220 and have both a folding stock and a removable barrel. Barbies for men, indeed. What’s in your trunk?

56 Responses to New from Ruger: SR-556 Takedown

  1. I think this was more aimed at quickly swapping the barrel between 5.56 and .300 blk since they offer a barrel conversion for it. Which is more than I can say about other companies that stated they would have barrel conversions and have yet to deliver.

    • Considering the re-zeroing of optics required for most caliber switches (including 5.56 vs. .300 BLK) and the price point Ruger’s selling these things for, I’d rather just have a second upper. Can swap dang quickly as well, and to save $$$ you could easily do it with a single BCG. To sell me on a quick-swap barrel for caliber changes, it would have to be appreciably less than the cost of an upper and I’d need assurance of no change in zero after removing and re-installing the same barrel (e.g. if I take the 5.56 one off then re-install it and now the POI is 2″ away from where it was, I’m not interested).

      • Why bother with changing uppers, when you could just buy two complete AR’s for under two big ones??

        • Bingo! lol. I’d be concerned about screwing up and accidentally sending a .300 Blackout down a .223 chamber (yes its possible and it can K’B) of course I always double check everything but why add more risks or things to check for only slight convenience and the same price as two guns?

        • Nate I don’t know how many times I’ve heard this bs about .300 blk locking up in a 556 chamber if that happenes you’ve got some wicked throat erosion and needed a new barrel about 200k rounds ago… It’s never made sense based on the cartridge specs and it doesn’t work in real life either… I’ve tried it doesn’t work in either direction the shoulder is to far fwd on 5.56 and the bullet dia is to large on .300 blk

      • I think their mitigation of sight issue, is that the irons are on the gas block, and change out with the barrel, so you’d keep the 300 BLK sites adjusted for elevation and zeroed for that barrel, while the 223 sights stay consistent too.

        While it does seem like a bit much just to lose 4 inches off the end of the rails, it makes the railed section the same length as the barrel, so the whole package gets that much smaller.

        I wouldn’t mind it in general. I love my 10/22 take down, and one of the best parts of the take-down style, beyond portability, is the ease of cleaning the barrel. This gives you way easier access for cleaning everything, gas system included.

    • I agree. The cartridge changeover capability is better than the takedown feature which leaves the handguard and operating rod installed.

  2. Any word on how the barrel design works so that it requires no tools? I’m pretty interested in how they get it to not violently fly off or explode from an engineering/headspace/every-gun-thing standpoint.

    • This is old technology. It seems to use the same system that Ruger employs for its 10/22 takedown models.

      There was a time when takedown rifles in various calibers, especially .30-30 Winchester, were commonplace. They were based on a John Moses Browning design (well, wasn’t everything). The barrels did not fly off, violently or otherwise.

      I have two Ruger 10/22 takedowns. They hold zero and they are quite safe.

    • In the bottom, left photo it looks like the barrel has external lugs that index into something on the receiver side (probably on the inside of a modified barrel nut) and the front, bottom of the handguard has a big ol’ detent that prevents the barrel assembly from rotating and keeps it locked in where it belongs.

      • “In the bottom, left photo it looks like the barrel has external lugs that index into something on the receiver side (probably on the inside of a modified barrel nut) and the front, bottom of the handguard has a big ol’ detent that prevents the” . . .

        . . . upper receiver from being mil-spec, and you from using any regular barrel. It locks you into un-fielded Ruger technology which, for he $ should come with the extra .300 Blk barrel.

    • Headspacing isn’t that difficult a problem to solve. Typically, you have 0.004″ of allowance in the headspace spec for being correct. That’s the thickness of a nice sheet of paper, or the diameter of a strand of a brunette’s hair, as a practical guide.

      The challenge in making an AR takedown is the gas system. Ruger “solves” this by using a piston system, and I’m guessing that they’re using an op rod in the midst of this. Changing how the gas tube impinges on the gas key can affect the accuracy of an AR. There’s really no way to make a DI takedown rifle and “solve” this problem well, so going to a pistol/op-rod actuation of the system is almost a given.

      Most takedown rifles that are well done are bolt or lever guns. Personally, a very well done takedown bolt gun is more interesting to me than a takedown AR, but then well done bolt guns are almost always more interesting to me than any AR.

      Here’s what would have my interest: A magazine-fed, bolt-action takedown, with a 20″ barrel. My druthers would be for a post-64 Winchester M70 action. The barrel should have an integral suppressor. The scope should mount to a rail affixed to the barrel. The scope mounts should allow a scope dismount/mount to repeat to within 0.5″ at 100 yards. The barrel should have integral iron sights, with hooded front right and a rear peep. The rifle should be chambered in 6.5×47, .260 Remington or something similar.

      I like the idea so much, I might have to build such a thing one day.

      A conventional AR that come apart? Feh.

      • Nemesis Arms Vanquish Sniper rifle with 2nd barrel ,(for example) a .243 WIN (sorry, not many typical choices except the .308 which I priced this one with as the original barrel) is $6399. No mags for either caliber, no seperate buis. So ruger has done pretty well when the gun can be bought in556 for $1500 with 3 mags and $450 gets you the next 300 blk barrell with 2 mags. If you can’t appreciate an apples to oranges comparison of a piston ar vs d.i., sorry for you(blah blah u.s. Forces have used d.i. for years-facts.1)piston guns run cleaner and cooler 2)300 blk can be tuned on this ruger to not cycle the bolt i.e., it becomes a bolt gun, quite handy with a suppressor 3)if you’re worried about mixing up rounds 223/300 blk/6.8 spc(all similar in size) then you don’t belong on the trigger side of a firearm

      • Nice!

        A caliber-converting AR that fits in the same case as the Ruger 10/22 takedown. The front sight has windage and elevation adjustment so the zero should remain constant. The lower has a dual stage 4 1/2 pound trigger upgrade. The 300 BLK barrel unit is clearly marked, and has independent gas block regulation.

        Dyseptic may not be interested, but I think the concept is pretty slick. I’ve got an SR-556, and have enjoyed the reliability and durability of the design.

        If it works as advertised, I want one.

        • I have 3 ruger 10/22s as b.o. guns. One, a takedown, 2nd, a tactical with folding and adjustable stock, 3rd, just a regular setup. Swiched out all the bolt/charger release so safety doesn’t need to be pressed to close the action, placed new charging handles(bigger, easier to use with gloves), put new triggers(6.5 pull down to 2.8), placed new rubber bolt catchers to quiet the action, added beefier extractor pins, placed new mag holders which work especially well on the bx-25/50 mags to remove any wiggle allowing for better feeding and ability to use the mag as a rest and not have ftf issues, replaced the charging handle springs with alternates for hot loads or subsonics. So, these already very reliable guns which run great, are even better. If given a choice between the takedown 22 which I have and will have silenced, vs the 556 and 300 blk which has been bought along with silencer and adapter for both rounds(gun/s soon, suppressors ???), my bob will have the 556/300 in it’s neat little bag. Hell, I’ll probably have both with a357 revolver and whatever carry 9 or 40 is on my body.

  3. Can someone please explain to me how my current AR which already breaks down into two halves without tools is NOT a ‘takedown’?

    • Here’s the explanation: TAKEDOWN! Its a gimmick. Your AR already breaks down as efficiently as it needs to right out of the box.

  4. I tend to think of modular firearms as being more equivalent to computers than barbies. You put together the piece of equipment based on the function(s) you want it to perform. With the ability to add/replace/remove components to tailor it as your requirements change.

      • Along with the Harley “HD” designation. “How much for this bolt-on accessory?” “Hundred Dollars”.

        • And you have to wear the leather “Property Of” vest, with the name of your local HD parts dealer.

          Buy Japanese. Get yourself a Suzuki Bandit. You might have a slightly harder time getting a girl to wait on the back of it for you outside a biker bar. But she won’t have to help you push, or wait in standard HD “broke-a_ _ break-down” mode with you by the side of the road.

  5. I know larue makes their predAR series rifles that have the same type of takedown feature. Had a predobr that had that feature. Never used the takedown though.

  6. “Barbies for men, indeed”. Speak for your self, hippie. My daughter’s “Barbie” is a suppressed Mark II.
    JWT

  7. “What’s in your trunk?”

    Sub2k, paired up with a Glock of same caliber (mags)… Stays real low profile and portable if needed, and I figure if the car ever gets stolen, I won’t cry myself to sleep, because it’s just a KT.

    Oh no, does that mean I have ‘junk in my trunk’? lol

    As far as the SR-556 TD, yeah… I’m with Shire-man, just pop the pins if that’s what you want.. sheesh.

    • Well, I’m not sure if you’re referring to the Kel Tec or the Glock, but yeah either way that’s ‘junk in the trunk’ bro 😉

  8. Okay guys, First Please go an check out a “DRD” Take Down rifle, which is ALL 100% American made too!
    Then there’s even a mod. any of us can buy via Buds Guns and then You ALL will see what a REAL “Take down rifle” is, ofcourse this is all IMHO..
    Shouldn’t it be called a “Break Down Rifle” (^_^)

  9. Great idea till someone forgets the .223 barrel is in it and slaps the mag full of .300 in it. Hello Ruger I need a few parts and a band-aid for my booboo.

    • It wouldn’t chamber, you would put the proper barrel on, and then be on your way.

      Am I missing something?

        • You’re so right, what I thinking about posting with so many experts on here, just crazy of me post. May I suggest trying this new thang called Google before you suggest others are not as enlighten as yourself.

          I wish I never fired either of those rounds or .308, 7.52×39, 5.45×39, I would be much less poor now 🙁

          I googled a bit for you: http://www.300blktalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=128&t=87852&start=10

          How do you like crow fixed? Baked, fried, roasted?

        • A 5.56 won’t fit a 300 BLK in the chamber, and a 300 BLK won’t chamber in a 5.56. Now if someone was hamfisted enough, and had a short 110 or 125 grain 300 BLK round, they might be able to mash that far enough into a 5.56 chamber to cause a catastrophic failure. We have enough shooters out there that someone is dumb enough to do it.

          Simple solution: .223 and 5.56 in a 5.56 chamber, 6.8 in a 6.8 chamber (6.8 Spec II chambers both), 300 BLK in a 300 BLK, .458 SOCOM in a .458 SOCOM, and .50 Beowulf in a .50 Beowulf. And 6.5 in a 6.5 if you actually have one of those. Maybe someone could mash a .308 round into a 7mm-08 AR-10 if they really tried hard enough. That’d be bad, too.

          You can put a 9mm round into a .40 cal GLOCK and have it fire, too. Hazardous caliber combinations and ham-fisted idiots do exist in this world.

          I’m not going to forego the 300 BLK just because some guy on the Internet did something idiotic with one. Neither will Nick or Jeremy S. If you don’t want 300 BLK nobody is forcing it on you.

      • Umm, yes it will chamber quite easily. The bullet can set back into the case without detection. I’ve seen the end result firsthand and it ain’t pretty. Be careful and manage your ammo.

  10. You could buy a Law Tactical Folding Stock Adapter, if they weren’t unobtanium. I’d call them vaporware except there are videos of them in existence.

  11. “Aren’t current ARs ‘takedown’?”
    Not really. if you tilt the upper after disassembly, the bolt will fall out. Leaving the magazine in it is a pain during reassembly. The upper is a majority of the rifle’s length, and won’t store in any decent sized container (if you wish to be inconspicuous during transport).

    I don’t like the idea of the barrel twisting into the upper in this design. Too proprietary (Ruger makes the best AR barrels available bruh! /sarc) and another point of possible failure. A fixed handguard is another fail on Ruger’s part. This is more of a modular barrel system. I like the Dolos system, and Bud’s has a system that is similar, but takes a bit longer to assemble and disassemble. They both use standard barrels, but limit handguard choices due to the handguard being central to the takedown system.

    Lots of ideas floating around for takedown worthy ARs, but nobody has quite hit the sweet spot.

  12. This is stupid. Pull the two takedown pins and you’ve got a ‘takedown’ AR without spending any extra money

  13. Besides the obvious gimmy of a barrel Quick Disconnect when ARs breakdown in 10 seconds anyway (as virtually all posters stated), the hardest part of pill to swallow is Ruger’s commitment to complex, mediocre designs (hydraulically pinned gas block rather than clamp style, inefficient oprod mechanism that allows inconsistent barrel pressure).

    And then there is the $2000k retail pipe dream… Which is made laughable when you call Ruger to ask “What accuracy should I expect from this rifle when tuned?”

    Answer: 3″ at 50 yards… This is EXACTLY what I was told about my SR556 when it was grouping 2-3″ at 100 yards. At least they tried, right? [Insert mildly confused grimacing face with sarcastic tone]

    Get a Rock River for under 1000-1500 and have GUARANTEED 1moa for a little over a grand. Thanks but no thanks Ruger!

  14. I only own take down AR15 rifles. They take down in half by sliding out two captive pins mating the upper and lower receivers together. 😉

    This would be cool for caliber changing if you didn’t want two buy two upper receivers, optics, handguards. Not having to buy two sets of optics to shoot two calibers could justify the expense of this system, easily saving a thousand bucks or more.

  15. A less-pricey option on a 5.56 that will transport in a tennis racquet case is the Kel-Tec 16C – folding stock, short barrel, rail for a scope, and only weighs about 5 lbs. Takes standard AR mags, and is surprisingly accurate for a very light rifle.

  16. You can buy a HYDRA AR-15 from MGI Military. They have a much better design. They use Standard AR-15 barrels in dozens of calibers so you are not forced to buy your barrels from them. Also, they allow you to swap out the magazine wells as well to change from rifle to pistol calibers, and use a real AK-47 maxwell instead of a AR-15 crappy conversion. Plus the HYDRAs sell for around $1100.

  17. I bought myself one for Christmas and the second time I went to go shoot it, it jammed up on me quite a bit. I took it back to the dealer I bought it from and when they shot it one of the rounds almost blew up on them so they sent it back to Ruger whom tried to say it was my fault, saying I used wrong ammo. I got the ammo the same day I bought the gun so the dealer had my back on this. So those assholes at Ruger did not want to refund or replace the AR so some legal action threat was pursued and they finally gave in and refunded me was not a good AR buying experience for me from Ruger left a bad taste in my mouth and the local gun dealer no longer carries Ruger because it. now I got myself a Sig 516 NATO

  18. I bought a AR 556 and love it but as any DI system it is dirty fast, but a great AR. I just took delivery of a SR 556 takedown and it is even better. First the price was $1700 which is a mid range price , the piston system on #2 setting is great for almost every ammo.
    The takedown feature is great also. It allows change to the Blackout barrel and zero stays with the barrel. Yes all AR can separate in 2 parts but the RuGer is in 3 parts all under 19″, it fits in the small carry backpack. AR choices are as different as the people that use them
    The SR556 is the best I have ever owned and so pleased I am going to purchase the SR 762 soon. I own 7 AR ,3 Shotguns, and 8 handguns. I say see for yourself there is no right answer that is one of the things that makes America God,s country

  19. I really like this concept…I’ve never liked switching uppers from the original, there’s always something a tad off on them and they’re bulky to carry around…barrell only system is a fantastic…so much so that I just ordered one!

  20. Why hasn’t this article been updated/corrected? The rifle can takedown into four sections easily. Giving a total length of 18″ which fits nicely into the 22″ case.

  21. So many nice things about the build of the SR 556. I have no idea why so many are stuck on the “takedown” capability and aren’t focusing on the number of other upgrades this platform has to offer. This has the ruggedness and durability that many might be missing out on. However, if you are simply a “targeteer” with time only on the range, there is much more to appreciate. Would have loved to have had this while deployed, parachuting, playing in the swamps of Louisiana or the desert.

    If you’ve held one and played with it yet, you might easily be misinformed.

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