If you’re someone looking for a good bolt action rifle that doesn’t break the bank, you’re not alone. The budget bolt gun market is practically booming these days, with companies like Savage, Mossberg Weatherby and Remington all jockeying to get the best combination of price versus accuracy. This January Ruger introduced the American Rifle, their entry into the world of budget firearms. But is it actually any good? Or has Ruger compromised too much to get the rifle below that magical $500 price point? They handed me one of their rifles to find out . . .
There are a number of features that Ruger has built into this rifle (aluminum bedding, scope mounts from the factory, dual cam bolt…), but three are most important: the stock, the trigger and the magazine.
The stock on this gun is a rigid polymer (plastic) of some kind, which gives it a very slick feel in both senses of the word. It looks great, but there isn’t really a lot of “grippyness” to the stock. Where the Weatherby Series 2 comes with a very grippy stock, this one feels like ti is going to slip out of my hands. Not really an issue on the range, but in a tree stand or out on a hunt it might be an issue. Ruger tried to compensate with some roughed up patches on the forend and grip, but they aren’t all that aggressive.
There is a benefit from this hard stock that the Weatherby doesn’t get, which is a free floated barrel. The only place the metal bits contact the stock is at the aluminum mounting blocks that the receiver mounts to (shown above), which keeps the stock from pushing the barrel off target and lets the barrel shift around a little during the firing process. Free floating the barrel is generally one of the first improvements made when trying to make a rifle more accurate, so seeing one that comes that way from the factory was a pleasant surprise.
Something that was no surprise at all was that the comb on this stock, just like every other bolt action rifle I’ve fired this year, is nowhere near where it needs to be for a scope. The cheek piece puts the eye level with the barrel, but not the scope. So at best you’re getting an okay chin weld instead of the rock solid cheek weld I like.
Just like I suspected when I test fired the rifle at SHOT this year, I don’t like the trigger on this gun. Sure it’s adjustable and everything, but it just feels cheap. The small metal flap protruding from the middle of the trigger is something that a lot of budget rifle manufacturers are doing (Mossberg dubbed it their “LBA trigger), as it gives the shooter the feeling of a two stage trigger without the need to engineer the two stages into the trigger itself. It also acts as a safety, allowing the trigger to be set lighter than normal for a single stage trigger. But to me, it just feels… Cheap. Factor in the trigger itself which has a tendency to creep a little too far before finally hitting the break and you have a trigger that I wouldn’t accept even on my shotgun.
Speaking of cheap, the bolt is another small issue I have with the gun. Emphasis on the small, here. In general, the bolt is fine. It works. But despite the dual cams working inside the thing and the slick sides it still feels stiff and looks rather lackluster. I tried operating the bolt with just my wrist, but that wasn’t happening. Not easily, at least.
The magazine on this gun, however, is a masterpiece of engineering on a budget. Seemingly taking a note from the Krag-Jørgensen rifle of the late 1800s this gun uses a rotary style magazine not completely unlike their existing magazines for the 10/22 rifle. Using a single rotating flap Ruger has made a lightweight and reliable magazine capable of holding 4 rounds of ammunition, a design that I hope will phase out the older spring-and-follower magazines for low capacity firearms. It just seems like a really simple solution to a complicated problem, and it was executed perfectly in this rifle.
The reason they need such a removable magazine is that the top of the receiver on this gun is closed off. There’s enough room for an ejection port in the side of the receiver, but that’s about it. The added material not only strengthens the gun against the recoil of the ammunition but it also keeps everything precisely aligned.
The real question, as always, is how well it shoots. And to answer that I trucked it out to my favorite range in San Antonio.
This four round group was the best I could get all day, roughly 1 MoA. I say roughly because, like I mentioned before, I don’t get my targets back.
To be honest, I’m slightly impressed. I was expecting this gun to be far worse, but it exceeded most of my expectations for a $450 gun. There are some minor gripes I have about this gun, but all in all its a fine shooter.
Ruger American Rifle
Caliber: .30-06 Springfield (also .308, .270, .243)
Barrel: 22″, 1:10 twist
Size: 42.5″ overall length
Weight: 6.12 lbs.
Operation: Bolt action
Finish: Matte blue
Ratings (Out of Five Stars)
Remember: ratings are based on the merits of the firearm compared to other similarly priced and marketed firearms. So five stars here is nowhere near five stars on a Barrett 50 BMG rifle.
Accuracy: * * * * *
Using a bipod I was able to get a 1 MoA group at 100 yards. Good enough for deer slaying and just about anything else.
Ergonomics: * * *
The rifle feels okay in the hands, if a little slick. The bolt is tough to work, but it functions. The cheek piece is far too low, though.
Ergonomics Firing: * * *
The recoil pad, which Ruger specifically designed, is very nice. But that trigger is terrible.
Reliability: * * * * *
There aren’t many things to go wrong with a bolt action, and the magazine design makes this a really robust system.
Customization: * * *
There really isn’t an aftermarket for this gun yet. And even if there was, aftermarket parts wouldn’t help all that much. This gun is about as accurate as it can be without swapping some major components.
Overall Rating: * * * 1/2
I still like my Weatherby better, but there’s no denying that this gun will strike fear in the hearts of paper and deer alike. An accurate shooter, great for a first hunting rifle or bolt gun, but missing the refinement that makes for a lifelong companion and available for around $200 more. Better than the Mossberg 100 ATR, but a far cry from the Weatherby Vanguard.
nice write up… so what would you get for $200 more?
A Weatherby Vanguard S2
i have both and for the money ill take the ruger any day.american made and very accurate is the way ive found it.i polished the bolt a little and its smooth as silk.im not a competition shooter or expert i was on the rifle team in the usa and try to stay in practice shooting. i hunt mostly and and do shoot out to 500 yrds. like it better than my 700 remington too.but i also load my own amo.
Just bought Rugger .233 American..and love it. BUT caviants.The BOLT SUCKS. FIXED that with polish job now very smooth. Not mauser but close. THE TRIGGER SUCKS and will be replacing it; agree with all comments following.
Third, 10 round mag is awakward, in the way and ruins the lines. Will be replacing it with a four round rotary..
GOOD. Fits me very well! First time I through it up I had a perfect sight picture.!
GOOD. Easy carry in my saddle scabbard.
Good . Out of the box, laser bore sighted [Vortec 4-12].
100 yrs bench rest. FIRST 3 rounds[Federal] covered area of a dime!. POI was 3 hi and 2 left because I had not zero’d the scope. My jaw hit the floor. I’m very much looking forward to the better trigger and believe the barrel will do even better. For the money, a great buy. With its docil recoil it is, in my opion, a great step up for beginning shooters. For me, money well spent. Just be prepared to correct the three issues above.
The bedding blocks are not aluminum. They may resemble aluminum due to the color, however they are made out of much stronger and denser investment cast stainless steel.
200$ more?…Match ammo and a better shooter?
Nice review! I had one question, is the stock rigid enough that if I use a sling to shoot standing, that the stock won’t “bend” enough to touch the barrel? I see where this has been an issue on some other economy bolt action rifles.
The stock will most likely flex using a sling “wrapped” around your arm to steady your aim.
How does this compare to their M77 Hawkeye line?
I’ve no experience with the American but the Hawkeye line is worth every penny in my opinion.
The Hawkeye is about 2.5-3 times the price, but a premium rifle in comparison to the RAR.
The only good 77 is the onlkd tang safety model. Once they redesigned the trigger to be proprietary, they killed it. If I had to choose between a new Ruger M77 or an old Mauser, or get the mauser in a heartbeat. A stripped action is better than the M77 complete rifle.
I like my three position just fine.
I bought a Ruger American left hand 308 had to send it back to Ruger for fixing, first they said it was OK then it was we found some issues with burring and fixed it. I sold it off and bought a Remington 700 Varmint and have not looked back. Much better rifle.
OK, I have to ask, why don’t you get your targets back? The first time you said that I thought maybe you were just in a hurry and didn’t have time for the range to go cold before you rushed to print. But clearly I was mistaken. What gives?
Thanks for the review. I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a bolt action rifle and I saw this one in my LGS for less $375.00.
In spite of its shortcomings I think it would be a good choice given the price and how cheap I am.
That’s the trade-off right there. If it does what you need, go for it. But if you have the money to spend, there are better options.
Checkout Marlins xl7 bolt action.I got one in .243. Only fired it 6 times to date.haven’t had it long, but am in love with it.only took 6 shots to zero.feels really great .not cheap feeling.so far very accurate.weight is perfect at 6 3/4 pounds.350.00 in n.c.checked out American, and savage axis before settling on the xl7.big difference.feels, looks and shoots like it cost more.only drawback is it has an internal mag. which I still like.
I just bought an American rifle. My days of hunting are over I 80 years old and I have use it on the range and really enjoy shooting it. I am not big on plastic stocks but the I had work good. I have replaced it with a wooden custom stock and my son took it out to day to try it out. There were some problems I did not like with the bolt it worked but had a strange noise that was caused by the receive which had machine marks on it. I polished it down to see what the problem was and that is what I found . I re blued the bolt housing and It worked great but where the bolt hit the bolt housing the bluing was rubbed off. the new stock worked great I did have a problem with the magazine fitting right but that should not be a problem. I have had a number of rifles which included a 7.65 mouser that that I made up fort hunting and That was the best bolt action that I had in a large caliber. the 7.65 falls between the 3006 and the 308 .It did rattler your teeth. And it was a bear to shoot. So the rugger was a blessing. Never killed any thing with the 7.65 and most likely will not get to do that with the rugger American. I have enjoyed the comments but to each his own. have fun and good hunting.
I was interested in this rifle when the news hit the wire about a budget Ruger. Always been a big Ruger fan but when the Americans hit my local rifle shop I was disapointed in the general feel of the rifle in my hands. Bolt manipulation felt gritty, just overall a cheap feel to it. Again I have to ask what the deal is with the Savage type pre-trigger? The set trigger (push forward on the trigger) on my CZ is so much nicer. I’m sure Ruger will sell many copies of it, just not to me.
Yeech…maybe they should call it the Model 7710, after the disgusting Remington 710. And then they can package it on shrink-wrapped cardboard and hang them on hooks in the ‘shooting accessories’ section. Accurate or not, a cheap-feeling plastic hunting rifle will never pollute my gun safe.
An all-plastic bolt action rifle is like a polymer-frame Colt Single Action Army covered with Picatinny rail sections.
An all-plastic bolt action rifle is like a polymer-frame Colt Single Action Army covered with Picatinny rail sections.
Stephen King himself could not have conjured up a gorier image. I may never be able to get to sleep again. Ever.
That is truly a classic statement !
Awwww, polymer stocks aren’t all bad. My S&W i-Bolt has a very nice stock. Good solid pistol grip and a nice high Monte Carlo that puts your peeper right in line with a scope. They even saw fit to put a super nice (Hogue?, LimbSaver?) recoil pad on it. I’ll be the first to say that nothing beats nice wood but for the money saved there are some polymer stocks that can be lived with. Sadly they’re not made anymore but for giggles,
Oh, looky a gun snob… but then again you might be someone who owns a Yugo (but in a different category) I feel sorry for you… “polluting your gun safe” …pleasssssse get a life.
Just bought a .243 about 2 weeks ago to have a cheap rifle to not abuse when hunting like I do to my other brownings and other high end rifles. I couldnt be happier with it. Shoots submoa with barnes ttsx 85 grain and Leupold VX2 CDS
I’m no expert, but I did have an interest in the American. Like you, I was underwhelmed when I got my hands on it. Now I’m very pragmatic and have a deep respect for function and the concept of ‘enough’. Maybe when I actually need a bolt gun, I’ll reconsider.
Oh and if you’re shooting where I think you are (NE SA) you *can recover the targets, you just have to ask for ’em and then wait for a cease fire.
Yeah, but when you’re shooting for free you don’t ask for anything more than a bench and some time.
Um, yeah, shooting for free is a trick I haven’t figured out yet.
While not a range I can shoot for free near many mountains. I just have to watch where I am so that I don’t fire in a National park as that is still illegal.
The River American really bummed me out when I held it in person. I was drooling over this rifle and was going to order one in 308, then I held it. That stock is terrible. The trigger is nowhere near where it should be. All in all a disappointment.
Looks like there may be a Savage in my near future…
Just picked this rifle up this past weekend at the gunshow in .308. My trigger feels crisp and the bolt after about a hundred pulls feels smooth. I like the slim design and it feels great in my hands. Paired it with a Nikon 3-9×40 will report range results later this week. I like going to the range by TAMUSA.
Love bolt action rifles but hate bolt action rifles that make me row the bolt with my shoulder instead of throwing the bolt with a flick of the wrist. Still, what can anyone reasonably expect for under $450? The American does seem like a lot of rifle for nottalotta cash.
I have operated two Ruger American rifles in 7mm08. You must have gotten one of the very few that didn’t get a crisp trigger and I must say that if you say the bolt is difficult to operate then you really need to start working out. I have shot many consistent sub one inch groups at 100 yds with my reloads. I own a Weatherby Mark V and the Rugers trigger breaks just as crisp. This read like an add for Weatherby rather than a review on the Ruger.
Seems like a lot of nitpicking to me on what was designed to be a nicely functional and very accurate but inexpensive firearm.
I found none of the problems the writer mentioned. My .308 version has a very crisp trigger (no creep in mine), the bolt is smooth and was from day one, and I’ve had no trouble holding the stock, not that slick at all to me.
What should have been mentioned along with the comments on accuracy and the magazine, is the light weight, good balance, 70deg throw on the bolt, and the dual locking cams to make the bolt easy to operate with this shorter throw, and the tang safety. My eye lines right up with my 40mm scope with a firm cheek weld.
I’ve been shooting for over 45 years, so I’m no newby at this. This rifle incorporates most of the best features of the other inexpensive rifles on the market, and I consider it the best buy of the sub-$500 dollar market. It plain works, and works well.
I agree Doug, took mine out to the range yesterday and it was just a clean and accurate rifle. I managed 1moa without support and that says a Lot about the rifles balance. For sub $500 it is a winner.
Shot mine for the first time the other day and thought it shot great for a $375 gun. I got the 30-06 and the only thing i was worried about was the recoil with it being so light but it wasnt a problem after i shot it. I see plenty of dead deer in its future.
Amen brother, you took the words right out of my mouth. Mine in. 308 works very well! Great balance good cheek weld. Smooth fast and accurate. Topped it with Leupold VX II, it’s awesome. I love it
Ordered .308 on-line, got it in two days. Waiting on AMMO tomorrow. Great weather prompted me to buy some local ammo Fusion 150 grain this past weekend. Shot about 30 rounds, Friday killed a coffee can at 300 yards then a groundhog the next day. First one this season. I hope to shoot the Hornady Match 168 A-Max 2700 fps as my standard for hog hunting.
I love the feel, weight, trigger and works perfectly with my Nikon 4.5-18 Prostaff 7 scope with medium height mounts. No cheek rest required for me.
Here is the deal for me. The gun is what it claims to be. All American and as accurate as any double the price rifle.
This gun is a winner! I am going to keep it.
Tested IMR 4064 with 125 grain Noslers this last week. I used the Hodgdon powder charts. Bottom line for my .308 Win is 46 grains gave a velocity of 2890 and 3/4″ groups.
47, 49 and 50 grains were great too. Only the 48 grain gave a bad result.
I choose 46 as it was highly accurate, low cost and 49 and 50 filled the case were difficult to load without spilling.
The 46 grain load is up to the lower neck so it is slightly compressed as well.
I was shooting .5 MOA at 325 yards. This rifle is amazing. 10mph head wind too.
Used a Lead Sled for all testing and Weather Flow to measure wind.
Hi nitromike here I always liked the first Remington model 788 s never owned one myself but it used to piss me off when my buddies would outshoot my 700bdl heavy barrel 2506 now it would shoot 5\8 groups but those 788 s in 222 would do better they sure have me the ribbing back then holding maybe this new Ruger will turn out to 222 would be nice!!
I have RAR .308 with the heavy 18″ barrel. I’ve been shooting and hunting for over 65 years and I believe this is the best fitting and handling rifle I have used.
It only weighs 6.75# with a Leupold 2-7X33 scope.
This Ruger shoots better than my Kimber Montana 7mm-08 and my Winchester 70 FW .243.
Got my .308 yesterday at the local gun show. $300 plus tax out the door. Put an old B&L 3x9x40 scope on it and went to the range. Shot groups with 4 ammo’s, 4 shot groups since that is what the mag holds. Printed two 1&1/8″ groups at 100yds off a bench rest with PPU 168GM and Federal 168GMM. Thought it would have done a little better. My Savage Axis/Edge in .308 with a much worse trigger printed a 15/16″ group with WW Supreme 150G ballistic tips. Both guns tended to print tight 2 and 3 shot groups but could not keep 4 inside an inch. Both bbls heated up pretty fast.
Hopefully you are not going to need more than 3 shots. My range test show it is capable of 1 MOA with 5 shot groups. I had to sand the front of my stock to get the barrel truely free floated. Overall, great value (my opinion). You can see a detailed review with lots of photos at:
Saw this rifle for the first time today and I had to have one. It feels great in your hands. i believe with a few minor tweeks it can be a real performer. Especially for the price. Thanks again ruger!
Lets see this rifle is in the $400.00 range, shoots 1 MOA, comes in a wide range of wonderful calibers and has a nice finish. What more can you ask for at this price? Someone can upgrade the stock with a pull-off stock or just add some lite grip tape for very little money. Most of all it gives a good rifle to start with for someone just learning the joy of shooting. I am happy Ruger has once again turned out a great rifle for a price people can afford since most of us are not a Rockefeller.
So true Michael. If a firearm shoots well and has good reliability and workmanship then it’s worth looking into. The American rifle is all of that and more. I mounted a Nikon 3-9×40 Prostaff BDC on my American 30-06 yesterday. I bore sighted the scope at 100 yards. I shot 5 rounds with a sub 1 MOA grouping! The gun was NOT bench mounted or tri-pod equipped! The recoil pad is excellent as is the recoil of the rifle. Very manageable! The bolt is crisp and precise and much faster than a Remington 700. The trigger is fine. I didn’t notice any issues. On a budget or not this rifle is an excellent shooter and very worthy of anyone’s consideration! Thank you Ruger!
I am a retired USN SEAL, I have been shooting since I was 6 years old. While I was active I shoot High Power Rifle and Bull-eye Pistol competition for 7 1/2 years. I have also shot competitively out to 1000 yards. I am a Distinguished Marksman in both pistol and rifle. I hunt with a 1903A3 that shoots at or under 1MOA. I also reload for all my pistol and rifle ammunition.
My questions are, what caliber was your rifle you tested, what was the bullet weights, brand, type and velocity. Your shooting rest could be better. I have shoot with many people, some even with a rest could not or barely could hold a 1MOA. Could you supply us with more detailed information.
Lastly, any rifle that can hold a 1MOA is outstanding, shooting factory ammunition. If some one wants spend more money, so be it, so what? If a cheap feeling trigger shoots that good, great.
ok shooters, the 308 ruger american with 22 inch barrel and the 1 in 10 twist. Which bullet weight shot the best!!??!!??!!
150g shot best in mine. Tried 180g also. Not bad, but the groups opened up some.
Try 168gr, always a contender…
I bought mine yesterday. 270 cal in five shots after bore sighting it I put two in the bull and called it a day. Nice gun for the price. As with all new guns I’m sure there will be the hard core guys who cut it down, unlike them I don’t have the money to buy the perfect gun! So I’m happy with what I could afford. And in the end this gun will take the same animals at 200 yards.
The Remington 783 looks much nicer and appears to be a higher quality than this plastic piece of nonsense. Just my perspective.
Totally disagree, 783 is ugly, heavy and rough. A pipe on a block of plastic
CJ, my $342 ugly, heavy and rough pipe on a block of plastic in 7mm Rem Mag shot a 0.3″ 4 shot group at 100 yards. Somewhere I picked up the strange notion that the purpose of a rifle was to make holes where desired in distant targets, not to be an objet d’art. Have I been confused all this time?
Well obviously yes. Have you not been reading the comments?
But really, most of the comments have been favorable for the RA accuracy and reliability so it comes down to ergonomics, looks and and materials. These are personal choices. If I top $400 for a bolt action I personally want controlled round feed.
The RA is a great value and a better shooter than many guns that you could rack up thousands of dollars on. Its a working gun gun for the average American, ( hence the moniker ), and Made in America.
I have this rifle in 30.06. It failed. The gun failed to fire, and cycling the bolt the bolt lock failed causing the bolt to come out in my hand making me miss a buck. I sent it back to Ruger and they replaced the bolt lock and pin. Today everything about this gun went wrong. Two deer less than ten yards away and it failed to fire. Then the bolt came out while cycling it and two rounds in a row jammed to the point that the hunt was cancelled. I cannot stress enough how much of a failure my gun is. I am going to request that Ruger takes this gun back. If they cannot do this I am going to be forced to melt it because I believe the gun I have is completely defective in more than one aspect. Oh yeah, the plastic rotary clip fits poorly and the extra clip sent to me by Ruger was about the same. The rotary push bar scrapes the outside of the clip causing the last round to stick on occasion. Complete garbage. Yeah, 400 dollars is the cheapest gun in my collection but 400 dollars for a gun I wouldn’t give away is 400 dollars I basically burned.
Send me the extra ” clips” as you call them. I can use them for my gun, which is absolutely amazing. Take your hand off the bolt release, and it wont release…
scope suggestion please in the under $300 range? closer to $200???
Nikon, Prostaff 3-9×40, Riflescope, BDC, $169 @ Amazon.com
Bushnell DOA 600 4x12x40, or Redfield Revolution 3x9x50, both good clear scopes under$200
Andy next time sober up before you go hunting.
Love this weapon. Got mine in .270, after zeroing I put five bullets in two holes. The two holes had 1/2 an inch between them (at 100 yards with Remington 130grain core locks). This weapon has so many good qualities. The recoil pad works great, making shoot for hours enjoyable and not painful. The 70 degree throw on the bolt is fantastic, no interference with the scope and makes for a comfortable reload. The rotary magazine works great, gives a rounded bottom to the rifle and hasn’t cause any jams or double feeds. The tang safety is comfortable and convenient. However my favorite quality is the adjust trigger, I adjusted mine to roughly 3lbs and I firmly believe that the trigger safety is a huge factor on the grouping I mentioned before. Overall love my rifle, refer to it as the “All American”.
I have this gun in 30-06 and I can shoot same hole at 450 yards every time. It WILL outshoot any other bolt action for $600, 700, 800 or 1,000. People commenting that have never shot it, shouldnt comment. Your hung up on shiny wood stocks and “flick of my wrist” bolt “rows”. Give me a break. This a dependable gun that will outlast any other. Remember, Its the shooter..not the gun.
Same hole at 450yds everytime?!… Get real! You must be the best marksman in the world with the perfect rifle under perfect atmospheric conditions everytime. I think you might of added that 0 by mistake.
There isn’t a single rifle or marksman in the world capable of this feat.
And yes, this may be a fine rifle for the price, but you make some mighty bold claims indeed.
you know this gun is awsome i dont know why some people put it down what the hell is wrong ? this gun shoots great i own a weatherby to and i cant stand the floor plate to me this a lot better gun then the weatherby you know what opinions are like a**** every body got one this ruger is a dam good rifle you got yours free why are you gripin
Totally agree unsure where he comes off saying the trigger and bolt are weak points, watch nutnfancy review on weatherby vanguard and notice he pulls bolt out while RELOADING chamber theres quality? Nick Leghorn’s a biased fool who would know quality if it farted in his face.
Leupold Rifleman was what I put on mine, 3-9×40
If you’re one of those guys who hang their nice shiny works of art rifles in the rack of a sporty side by side headed to a “condominium “sized shooting house overlooking a 10 acre biologic field, this is probably not your piece but if your a guy like me and leave your truck on foot to navigate briar and bramble in search of whitetail, this is a perfect tool!! My weapon
are for GO not SHOW. The only impressing I’m interested in is how tasty the venison is
I wanted a light weight gun that could get banged up in the elements and not have to worry about. I went with the Ruger American in 308 I took it to Canada deer hunting and I was not disappointed with the gun over all except for the magazine fell out of my hand and with it being -20 it broke. I had to super glue it back together and away I went. I took a 4 x 5 heavy buck at 230 yard with a Barnes vortex 165 grain. I will take it back again this year with a backup Mag.
I hate sporter stocks. Those long exposed barrels are just begging to be bent in a fall. I know about the accuracy and weight issue but I don’t care. Also, it is 2013. A gun without a synthetic stock and all stainless steel is not worth a second look. Or a rifle without a ten rd. capacity. Blasphemy to many, I know, but on the other hand I won’t give the time of day to a rifle that doesn’t have fixed sights. Relying on scopes only is a bad idea. The same with detachable mags. If it can’t also be top loaded the rifle is extremely limited. There isn’t a single bolt action on the market I like. Not one. The gun companies never get it quite right. Very annoyed.
You pretty much just described the Ruger GSR and the Mossberg MVP. Both have iron sights detachable box mags. The GSR can be top loaded not sure about the Mossie. The mossie takes both M1A/M14 and SR25 pattern mags, the ruger takes AI mags. Ruger has a laminate or composite stock MVP has a composite stock as well.
I bought one of these cheap pieces of crap in the 22-250 cal and the first shell I tried to slip into the barrel and close the bolt locked the bolt in the up position before I could rotate it down into the locked position. It will not move back to eject the shell or forward to fire. Worse I take it back the next day after the purchase and Cabela’s tells me they don’t have anyone/gunsmith on staff to do anything with it and tell me I have to go to a gunsmith and have the cartridge removed and maybe they will reimburse me for that but they will send it back to the factory for repair at no cost to me. The moral of this story is don’t buy this gun, but if you have to buy it somewhere that has an onsite smith and make sure you can get your money back if the thing turns out to be a piece of crap like mine (at cabela’s it’s black jack no backs). Needless to say this piece of junk is going to get sold as soon as I get it back! Spend the xtra $200 bucks!!
Your comments suggest that you work for a competitor to Ruger or you simply lack the necessary knowledge to properly operate a firearm safely.
Ruger doesn’t make the American in 22-250, so, you’re either, a. mistaken, b. a liar, or c. ignorant.
Actually, yeah, they do. A recent addition to the line along with a 7mm-08.
I recently added the .243 to my collection. Everything I said about the .308 holds true of this one. But this .243 shoots a tiny bit more accurately. Doesn’t see to be as picky with bullet weight either. I’ve put 58g, 80g and 100g through it…all are accurate.
The .308 liked 150g better than 180g. Haven’t tried any other bullet weights with it.
In my experience this is a great gun! I’ve got the 30-06 version with a Nikon pro staff on it and I shoot consistent 1 Moa groups at 150 yards. However, I payed $499 for mine! How are y’all finding these so cheap!
I too have the 30-06 version. I had it out to the range the other day. It’s scoped with the Nikon 3×9 Pro Staff BDC. All rounds within a quarter sized diameter at 100 yards! Awesome stuff! I purchased mine at Cabella’s last year when they first came out. Cabella’s was running a sale on them for $389.99. That’s a steal! Excellent gun!
I live in Wisconsin so I don’t know if you guys have Fleet Farm stores, but they were just selling Ruger Americans in all calibers on sale for $334.99! Got me a .270 and waiting for my ProStaff 3-9×40 to deliver so I can get it sighted in. Based on your comments (the intelligent ones that is) I will be very happy with the gun for what I paid.
I just bought my second ruger american yesterday
at grices gun shop in clearfield Pa and the price of the gun
was $ 319.00 new not used i now have a 308 and a 30-06 in the ruger
american, hope my 30-06 shoots as well as my 308 did
with remington psp corlokt 150 grain,i have leupold vx 2
3×9 scope on both rifles, thanks ruger
Nick Leghorn has got to be the softest gun shooter out there..
If you can’t operate the bolt with your wrist maybe you should work on your motor skills instead of constantly whining. .
The gun feels slippy..what a joke, try doing some curl ups and work on your hang strength
I don’t even own a ruger and I hada hard time reading this rubbish
Hi, I am looking to buy my first ruger American.i have seen on YouTube and other reviews stating that the light barrel is limited to only taking 4-5 shots and then letting it cool off. Is there a caliber I can shoot maybe 25-50 rounds with? Or how long do you have to wait for barrel to cool off. I really want one but I would like to shoot more than 5 shots before taking a break.someone please give me some good news.
I’ve shot my Ruger American 30-06 without any barrel heat issues putting many rounds down range. The magazine holds 4 rounds. Under normal reload circumstances you shouldn’t have any issues. Maybe you need an AR-15?
Thanks for your comments.i actually have a few ar15s.just not familiar with bolt actions.and by what people were saying about this gun as far as heating issues kinda scared me. Think I will get one and find out for my self.
My dad has this rifle in a .30-06 , we put a $60 scope on it and can hit anything we want at 100 yards.
Ruger just came out with the .22LR and 22 mag version this month and I’m thinking about getting it too. They’re both a great shooting value rifle.
Picked up mine today in .308 for $350.00 dropped a Bushnell 8x12x40 on it and fed it some crappy 168gr ball surplus ammo off my back deck. Shot 1moa four shot groups at 100 yards out of the box. Had my 14 year old daughter shoot it just to make sure it wasn’t just luck and as always she out shot me with four rounds touching holes. All you cry babies can go spend all your money on fancy rifles, I’ll keep my Ruger.
I bought my .308 American 12/31/2012. Since then, I’ve put 150+ rounds through it with no problems feeding or ejecting.
I do find the bolt a bit “stiff” to operate. I’ve lubed all required points in the cocking assembly and it helped…a little.
As a ~6lb rifle in .308, the recoil is fairly harsh. I’ve reduced the felt recoil by packing the stock with high-density foam and 16oz (yes, one pound) of lead fishing weights. This also balanced the rifle such that the added weight doesn’t present itself too much. After installing an 18oz scope (now taking the rifle to a little over 8lbs), the felt recoil is quite bearable.
Still working on keeping the grouping within a 9″ Shoot-N-See at 100yds. Not a fault of the American, it’s me and my poor ability to hold still.
Such a mixed bag of reviews. It seems as though, people with the .270 or .243 are satisfied, while the ones with larger bores, (30-06 and .308) are somewhat dissatisfied. Myself, I just bought the .270 and am extremely pleased with the $357.00 purchase.
This gun feels slim and light to carry. I opted for the .243. The bolt on mine feels great. My only problem is the trigger. I’m shooting 2 inch or so groups at 100yds. I routinely can shoot sub moa with my older ruger mkll in 7mm rem mag, and m77 in 30.06. all using factory ammo. I can’t seem to find what the trigger was set at from the factory. is it supposed to be 3lbs? Dry fire feels great, but when actually shooting it feels like this thing is never going to go off. I will just have to get used to it. I think the gun is capable of tight groups, but the trigger is holding me back. something about the stock makes this gun tough to get a comfortable rest when using my folding shooting table. Seems like shooting prone with a bipod would suit it better. So far I would keep it for a 200yd gun, even though the .243 can go much farther.
I’ve been a faithful Ruger shooter for over 25 years and recently bought my 14yr old son the American in .308. We took it to the range today to sight it in and after 10 shots the ejector failed. I cycled the empty cases through to and they would not eject at all. I handloaded some 150gr FMJ with mil brass and light loads. Guess I can try some factory ammo but do not think that is the problem. Any ideas?
My son is bummed but at least he was not trying to tip a deer over.
I had no intention of buying the Ruger but when they told me it was $299.00 I couldn’t pass it up. I got the rifle in 308. I added a 4×12 Leupold and Harris bipod I already had and went to the range. I don’t think you could do much better for a rifle that was under $300.00. It functioned well, handled the recoil well and shot pretty darn well. Its a lite entry level rifle that you can have a lot of fun with and you didn’t break the bank doing it.
Where did you get it for that price?
I own a ruger american in .270 and so far could not be more satisfied.At the range sighted in with Nikon
Buckmaster 3x9x40, three shots at 100 yards touched each other.In the field a week later was able to take three deer with three shots. This is hunting in south Ga.
The bolt on mine works smooth, and the magazine fits tight and easy to use.I have owned many more expensive
rifles and always worried about banging them up or putting scratches on them.This rifle just works without worry.
Rain or shine I will be hunting with my Ruger American, and my skinning knife.
You can spend a buttload of money and not get a better shooter. More money=cosmetics. I won’t have to baby this one,and it (22-250) shoots one hole @ 100 yds
I can’t tell for sure but this looks like their regular receiver. For a 233 I want to see a mini Mauser action.
Picked the 308 for 295 no tax and it is sleek and I found the bolt very manageable along with the lightest trigger next to my savage 22 hornet
Awesome. Why didn’t they come out with these years ago . I could have saved thousands.
I’m waiting for the American stainless All Weather due out in March
Where di you buy it?
love mine a 30.06 will shoot a three shot group at 100 yds cover them up with a dime using hornady white tail ammo best buy on the market period for the money
I was a little skeptical of this rifle at first….BUT, it performs really well!!! In 308 I get 300 yard shots EASY and it has performed flawlessly! The bolt could be a little smoother, but for the money, you can’t go wrong!!
What is the cost and where did you get it?
I bought one in 22mag. I put on a cabelas caliber specific 3×9 on it. Off the bench I am able to shoot 1/2 inch groups at 100 yds using cci mini mag +v 30 grain hollow points! Simply awesome rifle! Am going to get one in .223 next. Great rifle for the price!
I wanted a hog/coyote gun that I could ruin if I had to & not worry about it. I chose the Ruger American.
.270 out of the box would not eject spent cartridges without a LOT of effort. Called Ruger; they had UPS at my door the next day. 1 week later UPS delivers the rifle. Ruger included the W.O. of the work done (polished the chamber) and an extra mag. This was a better experience than I had with Savage on a 17HMR that wouldn’t fire (I had to pay the frt to the factory and no explanation was given of the repair).
At the range with a 15-20 mph 25 deg cross-wind (approx). After sighting in the Nikon 4.5-14 BDC at 60 yds, then at 100 yds, I managed less than 1.25″ MOA at 100 yds shooting Rem Core-Lokt 130gr. I’m confident that when mother nature gives me a calm day I’m going to decrease that MOA by at least the .25″. After adding a slip-on Limbsaver the lack of recoil is amazing. I don’t see how I could be any more pleased with a rifle that cost me $319 at Dick’s.
The trigger is crisp and perfect for my taste. The bolt could be smoother, but this is picking nits.
Two for the price of one. I just purchased a .308 and love it. I am selling my M-77 heavy 22-250 and will use that money to by another American in 22-250. I will have to wrap it with camp tape to tell them apart.
The gun is so light at 6.5 lbs, love the shorter barrel and I do not notice a huge loss of accuracy over the M-77. I also spent $120 to change out the trigger on the M-77. I love that trigger, it is sweet, but although the American is not as sweet the pull is crisp and feels good.
My wife won a Ruger American .270 Win back in December. I bought a 3-9×40 Nikon Buckmaster on clearance and mounted on it. I finally got it sighted in today and really like it, but the tang safety I do not. I shot several different rounds through it, before finding it likes the Federal Fusion 150 gr. ammo. The rifle shot a 3 shot group at 100 yards into 3/8″, for a free gun I am happy! The downside, my son has claimed it as his.
I have this .308 spankin new wondering how much I need to sell it for?
Your comment about the bolt being tough to work is somewhat confusing. The one big thing that makes this rifle such a raved about gun IS the bolt and how smooth it is. Ive fired el cheapo bolt actions and higher end stuff like Weatherby, ect. I also have shot military style bolt action rifles also from Mausers to Mosins to Springfields. So im pretty familiart with bolt actions. Grew up shooting Winchester 70’s and Rem 700’s almost weekly and I can say that the bolt action on the American is as smooth or even smoother than almost all of them. Very easy to manuever with degree of bolt and the thing slides by almost blowing on the thing. I really love the reviews on here but at times when i see statements like that makes me think you may have got a lemon or something. EVERYONE i have talked to that has shot the American or owns one raves about the smooth bolt action. I think you review is pretty spot on except for that. Im really stunned anyone would say the bolt is “tough to work”. Trigger could use some improvment thou. I agree
Well I ordered a 308 today ive had shoulder surgery so my 300 win mag is a no shooter for the rest of the yr so I needed something with a lighter recoil I ordered the american in 308 due to the reduced recoil $410 out the door Hopefully I made a good choice My dealer had a 06.in stock and I must say I liked the way it felt But Im lerry of the mag release breaking and that was the only thing I saw about the little rife I was concerned with
I bought my American .308 and love it. Being inexpensive shoot 200 yds. 1″ MOA. Easy to clean and light. I do my reload and am right in target always
Bob, what is the powder/bullet you found that does 1″ MOA?
Bought the 30.06 a couple years ago simply because I was tired of my new Remington 270 short mag with that cheap flimsy spring like thing they call a magazine that is near impossible to get back right and never hitting a deer within 6 inches of where I aimed due to the sorry 9 pound trigger pull that was checked at local gun repair shop. A lot of people that are complaining on here about theAmerican having some of the same problems I had at first but it is mainly lack of knowledge about the gun. For starters the trigger is great just because the gun doesn’t cost 800 – 1000 bucks dosent mean its a cheap performing g gun. As far as the bolt goes it is a little rough but who cares when the deer drops every time with one shot as far as out to 315 yds so far personally.heres how you solve the hull ejecting problems. Quit putting those cheap crappy Remington shells in it because this gun don’t like them at all. After inspecting the box I had that done this I noticed the inconsistent bullet seating problem and OD inconsistantcey problem not to mention the terrible grouping problem. If you want to buy an inexpensive tack driving durable and probably all around best gun you will ever own listen closely. First step buy the American made gun and be proud it is American to start. Quit buying Remington anything including ammo. People just seems to do this because that’s what their dad or grandpa did. They may have been descent back then but just plain junk from my experience over the last 10 years or so. Next go purchase Hornady Cutom 165 gr. sst. They run about 32.00 a box and that solves all ejection problems and are just plain lethal on whitetail not to mention most accurate bullet I’ve ever fired.Now keep in mind you just saved a lot of money on the gun so don’t skimp on optics. I prefer the Nikon Monarch. Much more clear and brighter than Leupold. With this set up you will have as much fun as I have had over the last couple of years embarrassing those so called gun guys at the range which has so much money tied up in they’re equipment they had to take out a second mortgage on they’re home so they could actually have a descent group at the range. You know the guys I’m talking about. The ones that take about 5 minutes to finally pull the trigger and then spend the next 10 minutes bragging on what they paid for their gun while waiting for it to cool off and then the next shot is normally about an inch off and they go to making excuses about the wind or barrel wasn’t cool enough yet. Nothing feels better than jumping out of truck quickly setting up and firing three rounds in the same hole at 100 yds and then immediately having to answer hey man what’s that your shooting? As far as one of these comments I seen on here about the durability of the American. I got in a hurry last season and left my Ruger American sitting up on bipods beside of truck and while trying to turn around I heard a loud crack like I ran over a branch or something. After returning home and realizing my gun case felt to lite I returned later that night and found my gun on ground with bipods in about 5 pieces and tire tracks ingraved in the middle of barell. A quick check the next day was one hole from two shots in the bulls eye!! I am now in the process of selling all my rifles which are Remington’s and Savages to be replaced by Ruger Americans. Simply put most accurate, durable, and inexpensive gun there is. All you haters with your expensive non accurate guns swallow you pride and just give one a try. Follow my suggestions and you will also be shooting like a sniper for cheap. That is if you know how to shoot. By the way I have had two guys decline a shoot off against me at the range winner takes losers gun after they seen the Ruger American in action.
Revisited my RAR in 308 today. Considering I paid $300 for the gun new and put a $200 Redfield scope on it, getting a 3/4″ group today shooting WW150grBST is nothing short of amazing. Put 10rnds of that ammo in the free butt stock pouch Ruger sent me and I am ready for deer season…in 3 months.
Ϻagnifique post : comme Ԁ’hab
Why oh why did Ruger decide to release this gun in 6.5 Grendel but not 6.5 x 284? 6.5 Grendels have no ammo for sale anywhere besides the internet, the produce ballistics that only a target shooter could love, and are basically good for nothing. The 6.5 x 284 is a true contender and can shoot lots of things.
I had never heard of the 6.5×284. Thanks for bringing it up. My brother has always been a big fan of the .284. I have seen him drop many an elk with one from his old model 88 Winchester.
I have the american in 7mm-08 and i have been very impressed thus far. i have about 4″ grouping at 300 yards. The bolt isn’t the best but doesn’t bind up when in a hurry. good bang for the buck. You have to remember that your judging a gun under $500. I live in fairbanks alaska and gun has performed well under harsh conditions.
Got a chance to setup and shoot one in 30-06. The only real complaint I have is the light weight, though I do realize that that is a continuing trend. Using 165gr. Rem. Core Loks…..groups just barely under 1″ at 100 yards. But this thing wallops the shoulder. Will be looking to try this in .308. Also…..in the 30-06 I think for me, an additional 3 lbs or so would be preferable. As for the bolt, the double cam action “feels” very secure when you give the final twist, and IMO I think by the time you put 100 rounds or so down range it will start to slick up a bit in the sliding motion. I wish the extractor was just a touch more aggressive on a slower bolt pull-back. I was impressed with and did like the trigger right out of the box with no adjustments. For an economical hunting rifle, this fits the bill very well, but for a younger person just starting out, I would definitely stay away from the 30-06/.270 offerings and stay with the 08s or the .243. But that’s just me………..
Given the light weight i like the 7mm-08. Really light recoil too. That one and my Other American in .243 are fast becoming two of my favorite rifles.
I disagree that one would want to add another 3-4 lbs of gun weight to reduce recoil. Weight is not the solution to Wallops. In general, one adds gun weight, i.e. heavy barrel, or wood stock for better accuracy not less recoil. Hunting rifles are designed to be light weight for easy carry and the RAR is a hunting rifle. I love the new synthetic stocks just for that reason. 12 ga. shotguns give big kicks and they are fairly light weight too. Back Pressure is the key.
What hurts is when you allow the butt to accelerate faster than your shoulder (Wallop). If they are one (back pressure), then there is no difference and then your entire upper body absorbs the shock. That is why even a small 100 lb person can shoot some big shotguns and rifles. Back pressure is key to no Wallop. Think about the trap shooters who shoot hundreds of rounds from 12 ga shotguns. They would never want to add weight to their guns to reduce recoil, right?
The other extreme: I made a mistake of sitting really tight against big old tree once to pull off a really long shot with my 7mm Reg Mag and a monopod. The darn shed didn’t move and neither did I. My shoulder had no choice but to compress. OUCH!
For all those looking for some truth in this mess of a blog listen to Will, David, and Trent.
I am a 7 year veteran of the Iraqi/Afghan wars and recently bought this rifle in .308.
Ruger includes instructions on adjusting the trigger, if you’d care, plus a gun lock. Some of us could give a crap less about pretty little gun safes with shiny things in them wiped down with a diaper on a daily basis. Some people pay more attention to these objects than the family members their meant to protect and provide for. So sift through the B.S. rhetoric and listen to these guys firing this gun on a regular basis. They have my vote and support without question and I’ll tell you a few extra pounds plus the weight of your pack adds up over 20km. If S.H.T.F. those gun safes will make nice coffins.
Boyds are now making wood stocks for the American. Gives the rifle a whole different feel. I picked one up and the stocks are of top quality. Adds a bit more weight to the gun. Gives it a perfect balance. I would highly recommend checking them out. Really great looking also
I did my due diligence and took your suggestion to one gent of the Weatherby Vanguard. Preferring the .308 caliber, my next step is fine tuning an add on or two. Do you know if a 26″ barrel is a better choice and if it is available from the factory? My goal is to eventually work up to a walk and stalk for a big trophy elk in a few years. First wild California Coast pigs. Next year California deer.
I stopped hunting a few years after my return from Vietnam. Finally getting the stinkin’ thinking’ and crap associated with being a Combat Corpsman attached to a Marine Corps unit put into proper context. Hunting is now on my Bucket List.
Will this information help you suggest a fine mid-priced scope for me?
I also wish to learn to load my own again. But after 40+ years the technology and materials have improved. Am I correct in believing reloading is still economical and satisfying?
Thanks, I appreciate your candor in your writing style. No bull s*#t. Just exactly what you experienced.
Joe, thank you for your Vietnam corpsman service. I was an OV-10 FAC, but I had the same loss of interest in hunting for at least 20 years as you did. Interesting phenomenon. Anyway, I use my Ruger American in .270 on hogs. It kills them just as dead as a “name brand” rifle three times the price. Never had a problem, but lots of hogs have had serious problems. I put a Vortex 56mm scope on it and the combination is lovely, indeed. Get after those hogs. They will overrun us (Texas) soon.
I have a 270 American. For the money, the accuracy is great. Wear shooting gloves and the sickness fades well. <
Paid $325 for mine in 308 – new. Mounted a 2-7X32 Redfield (Leupold made in USA) scope. Shoots 168gr A-Max (from Freedom Munitions), 5 rounds = 1/2″ @ 100, all day, every day. Does 3/4″ with 150gr Federal Fusion, all day, every day. Whatever other shortcomings it may have, it shoots and does it quite well. Did I mention??? Nosler 125gr (factory ammo) shoots 1/2″ 3 shot groups all day, every day. Don’t guess I can ask much more from an outfit that I have less than $600 (total) in?
The Ruger American in .308 Win will shoot half-MOA at 900 yards. I know because I did just that a few months ago with Hornady Match 168gr A-Max factory ammo. I then hit a 13″ group at 1,100 yards (was still learning to read the wind). The rifle does shoot if you do your part.
The scope was a Redfield Revolution 3-9×40 with the Accu-Range reticle (my homegrown “American Revolution” package). The scope mount was a Nightforce Standard Duty aluminum, with 20 MOA cant. Rings were Burris Signature Zee with the 10 MOA bushings, for a total of 30 MOA. Bipod was a Harris SL-M.
Total cost of the platform: $698. American Revolution, indeed.
Finally! Your Listing of your American Revolution Package give a clear concise description of a fine assembly of parts to make a complete hunting package. Thank you for getting me aimed in the correct direction.
Here’s how the above setup actually performed at the range.
Like I said, the rifle shoots. Though I did get “scope eye” at the very end of that day…my fault….
Yes, more “plastic” than I prefer also, along with a too low comb. HOWEVER, I challenge the shooting industry to produce a better “shooter” for the $$$. I own an American in 308. My cost, NIB = $325, rifle only. With a Redfield Revolution 2-7X32 on it, using Freedom Munitions NEW 168gr A-max, my American will shoot 5-shot/100yard groups of 3/4″ all day long. Perhaps I am just a fortunate fellow in that regard, but I love the way my American shoots. Yep, too much plastic.
What Ammo did you use
Here is my story with Ruger and the American. I bought a RA 308 new. I also bought new a set of Burris rings and a new Nikon prostaff scope. I installed them on the rifle took it to the range and set up a 25 yd target. I shot the rifle in a lead sled and zeroed the scope in with two shots. When I went out to 100 yds the rifle would shoot an inch low, several inches to the left five to the right and several high. I could not keep a 6 inch group. I used Lake City white box from Walmart, NATO ammo, 150 gr Hornady hand loads with H414, and Varget and others. No difference in grouping. I decided to buy a second scope maybe it was a bad Nikon. I bought a 4x12x40 Nikon from wally world and took off the other Nikon and made sure all the rings and rails were tight. I mounted the scope and back to the range. Same deal shot it to get on paper at 25 yards and at 100 all over the place with 2 min between shots. I called Ruger and they sent me a return auth. and back it went. Several days and Ruger calls with “It shoots excellent at 50 yards. ” I don’t know what Excellent is to them but maybe we don’t see the same blue sky. When I get it back I will return the Nikon to walmart and get a third scope new and if it shoots the same it goes to auction and I am done with the RA.
I have been shooting Rugers for 50 years I love them.and now I need help.I bought a new ranch American in 223 to hunt rock chucks.I was expert with rifle and pistol in the USMC my 2 friends that I shoot with were experts also.with this new ranch if we could get a 3 shot group at 50 yards we would of felt real lucky.we shoot allot and we know how.we tried 2 scopes to no avail we were shooting from a bench with a rest.I am going to put a new nikon on it and try again when the wind stops.right now I think I have a lemon.so if you can help me I would be happy.I can’t believe a Ruger is that bad.
Too bad you can’t post a pic. center of target 100 meters 3 rounds 5 time out shooting the Ruger American .308 Lapau casing Hornaday SST 185gr
Wow I hear a lot of people complaining about the plastic Ruger American Rifle. I own two of these rifles and I absolutely love both of these rifles. I own on in 308 and one in 270. I can take these rifles to the range and shoot a 1 inch group all day long. The rifle does not care what ammo you feed it. The rifle just eats the ammo and does not mess up. I have not had a single round fail to eject or not seat properly with either of these rifles. I have also put around 400 rounds so far through both these rifles. Yes these rifles are plastic; however, think about this for a second you purchase one of these rifles and you do not like the stock. You go and buy a after market wood stock for probably $100-$200 and wow you have a really great rifle for $500 or less. You cannot say that you can get a great rifle by any of these other companies for $500. I like the fact the trigger is ajustable and it feels very smooth to me. The more you shoot this rifle the smoother the bolt slides. Yea this is not a collector $1200 rifle this is a rifle that the average American can afford and is assembled here in America for God’s sake. You don’t see any other gun manufacturer trying to build their rifles here in America unless they are charging like $800-$1200 for their rifles. I commend Rugar for trying to create jobs here in America, offering a quality firearm the average person can afford, and offering a lifetime warranty on the rifles. Ruger is a great company and I am glad to purchase their products because I know it means quality, they stand behind their product, and it’s made her on our soil. I mean the Remington 700 that everyone so loves the trigger goes off at random shooting people and costs twice the amount of money as the American Rifle. I also own a Remington 870 Express shotgun and I personally will never purchase another Remington product because it is made of very low quality and I paid more for this shotgun then any of my other shotguns.I love the Ruger firearms and am a very proud owner of my Ruger American rifle. I think other gun companies in this country should be looking at Ruger and move their production of firearms back into the United States when it means quality.
Review very long and detailed. It gives me a lot of technical information needed when choosing a gun. Thank you for that!
The elaborate description makes the review understandable. American Rifles always the good choice for hunting and target shooting. Thanks for letting me know more technical information about the gun.
ok these are my first hunting rifles. Walmart had them on clearance. I bought the 308, and 30-06. $199 each. from what you say I should be very happy with these.considering I got both for what some folks paid for 1. Now i just need some glass. thanks for the review.
I am old school when it comes to rifle design, so I was skeptical when Ruger came out with these.
I bought a 17 because I didn’t have one and I wanted to introduce myself to the new American line.
Short story short: the gun for the money… and even without the qualifier, is as good as you can expect until you spend stupid money. 50 yard groups are easily covered with a dime, period.
I have done quite a bit of reading and contemplating the new design and would, as they stand right now, (will) buy one of the full size rifles in a heart beat.
I bought a new RA in 308. I put a Nikon 308 scope on it and took it to the range. I could not get it to group at all. I tried all kinds of ammo. Nothing worked. I ended up sending it back to Ruger and they said there was burr on the crown and re crowned it. It did not shoot much better. I talked with the LGS and was told they have a lot of problems with the RA. I sold it and bought a Remington Varmint in 308 and its been a great gun out of the box. Put the same 308 scope on it and it groups nice. The Nikon is the third 308 scope I had as I sent two back to the the distributor in case it was a bad scope on the RA. I shot with sand bags, and lead sled. I can not say anyone or many will have the trouble I did and I can say Ruger did make a good effort to try to fix it. But once you get to a point its best to sell and move on. I still like Ruger and own several including a 3006 77 left hand. But I would not buy the RA again.
Picked one up recently in 308 with camo stock for $319. They may have improved the trigger since this was written. You barely touch it and it breaks. I liked the feel of this rifle much more than the tc venture on the rack next to it.
I have a couple of the ruger American 308 and a savage axis 223 they all are super fine shooting and hunting rifles very accurate
It’s easy to spot the trolls with an agenda on here. The rifle is a great value and will put venison on the table for years to come. And I say this owing expensive ($1500+) rifles as well. It is the Ruger American that usually goes with me to the field.
Dunham sporting goods had them on sale for $199+tax=$211 Barska 3×9 with rings $39.75, Chinese padded sling $6.50. Grand total $258!!! I’ve spent more than that on scope mounts and rings. 1 moa with 168 hpbt 44 gr varget. I love it!!!! I own several long range 7mm stw Sendero, 308 pps, .388 lapua XCR, 50 bmg state arms. It doesn’t compare. But neither does the price. I like the trigger, the weight, accuracy, and most of all the PRICE. Things I don’t like the sound of the bolt siding in and out, sounds like finger nails on a chalkboard. The stock needs a cheek piece. But for $250 I’m JB welding something on it and going to rasp it down. I’m sure after the novelty wears off I won’t shoot it at paper. It will rattle around on the front seat of my truck shooting coyotes, deer, and it’s accurate enough to hit a woodchuck out to about 200 yards. I am very happy with my purchase. If I had to pay $325 for it bare….I doubt if I would own one. The sound of the bolt really bothers me, as well as my choice in optics. But I was going for functionally cheap and I achieved that. I would not hesitate to take it deer hunting.
I’m reviving this review because it has the one word that came to mind when I picked up, cycled, and dry fired a Ruger Ranch, American, and Go Wild. That word is cheap.
The bolts were sloppy loose. No weight. No heft.
The stocks were China plastic “hollow” sounding.
The triggers were K-Mart crisp.
The balance was akin to holding a 4′ piece of kiln dried 2″x2″ white pine.
I don’t care for Savage rifles, but I own three because they are inexpensive. All of them have rough mill marks in certain places. The stocks are acceptable (Mk II) to good (Model 11 Lady Hunter). I very much dislike the “accu-trigger” system on two of the three. Still, the bolt lock up and travel gives positive feedback.
I own one Mossberg Patriot. The Pat has a crap magazine, seriously. It is garbage. It has the same look, feel, and sound as that of a Ruger stock. It’s probably the same material. Mossberg probably takes the ends of Ruger stock blanks to make their magazines. The bolt is loose, but not near as much as the Ruger. The Pat bolt feels like it was milled for the individual rifle. The Pat trigger (adjustable) has better break than the Savage (also adjustable) with a similar blade in the center. I don’t like it, but I prefer it over the pot-metal trigger on the Ruger. The Pat stock is pretty okay. It’s wood…but it feels like faux wood. But it’s wood and the checkering is strong and gives a great feel in the hand.
I own two Tikkas (Forest and CTR). By far…BY FAR, the Tikka is the higher quality rifle. When I chose the Tikka, it was after having handled and passed on the other “budget” rifles. The Weatherby Vanguard, Howa, Browning AB3, CZ, and Bergara are the only rifles on par with the Tikka. None of them, barring the CZ, compare in finish quality. I’m not a Tikka fanboy. My next purchase is a Win M70 and then a Weatherby MkV. The Tikka has a plastic mag well, small-ish ejection port, long action based platform, and limits OAL (for the reloaders out there). Still, it doesn’t feel like you’re handling a BB gun at any stage of shooting. Also, the trigger is level 1 with some adjustment.
If you are in the market for a new “budget” rifle then do yourself a favor and handle every rifle in your price range. The Ruger budget rifles feel like Cracker Jack prizes compared to all of the others. They may shoot sub-MOA.
Great! So does every other rifle manufacturer today.
Ruger. Cheap. ‘Nuf said.
I have a RA in 6.5 Creedmoor. I replaced the trigger with a Timney….Smoother than the factory trigger.
I sanded and rasped the slick stock so now it feels better in my hands.
The stock – Bell & Carlson makes their fiberglas stock to fit this rifle. Might be worth looking at.
But, this rifle is a shooter.