Bruce Potts is impressed with Ruger's budget model
Almost ambidextrous to use
The large semi-ventilated rubber recoil pad in black is very squishy
and therefore has plenty of grip.
The standard cast and drop at the comb make the Ranch almost ambidextrous to use.
Ruger always takes a different approach to the most important part of a rifle’s integrity — a correct and stable bed between action and stock. If these are in unison, the rifle will shoot in harmony and accuracy is optimised. Instead of a single bedding block, bedding tang or vast amounts of synthetic bedding material, Ruger uses two V-shaped aluminium bedding forks on both the stock screw pillars, which fit into the reverse profile machined into the action bottom. This gives great stability fore and aft of the action and accuracy is assured.
Ruger has a knack of producing rifles that “real” shooters want, in an innovative way, at a good price. The rimfire market is swamped…
Stalking rifle: Sako, Ruger, Anderson Wheeler, Browning, Hollands, Westley Richards, Sauer, Remmington, Rigby, Blaser and more are all here. What…
Barrel, action and finish
- First, you notice the great handling from what is a short rifle at 36.25in and only 41in with a MAE Compact sound moderator fitted.
- This is due to the short but practical 16in barrel, which is available in either .223 or .300 AAC Blackout (.450 Bushmaster or 7.62x39mm optional).
- It is designed to be an easy-to-carry rifle “out on the ranch” in either saddle or truck.
- The barrel is medium profiled, with the muzzle having a raised lip to accommodate a 5/8 x 24 pitch thread
in this cartridge. As with the action, it has a tough matt-blued exterior skin.
It is also fully floated from the fore-end, allowing the barrel harmonics on firing to be consistent and thus achieving the optimal accuracy.
- The action is well proportioned with an aluminium Picatinny scope rail attached. The bolt is large and polished with three large forward locking lugs in “A”-type formation, with inset claw extractor and sprung ejection plunger to the face. This allows the bolt to have a short opening of 70° and speeds up the whole firing cycle with the small rounded bolt handle.
Trigger, safety and magazine
All the American rifle makers have dabbled with the safety trigger, or trigger-in-trigger design, in some form or other. Ruger’s version is the Marksman. It is an adjustable unit that allows the trigger weight to be varied from 3lb to 5.5lb. The central blade section within the main trigger ensures that the trigger sear will only break when properly held, reducing the risk of accidental discharge.
The safety is tang-mounted behind the bolt so the firing-hand thumb can operate this single-action safety silently and swiftly. You have a further safety — or visual guide to whether the rifle is cocked at least — in the protruding metal spur from the base of the bolt shroud.
The magazine is detachable and a good design. Being synthetic it will not rust, it is light and loads direct from the top with a rotary-type mechanism. This allows six .300 AAC Blackout rounds to be pushed straight down into the retaining lips. These also guide the cartridge as the bolt closes, very positive and assured.