Ruger 10/22 Takedown rifle: a compact package
Bruce Potts gives you the shakedown on the Ruger 10/22 Takedown
Ruger 10/22 Takedown
Price as reviewed: £820
No other .22 rimfire semi-automatic rifle has endured the ravages of time like the Ruger 10/22. It is still as popular today as when it was introduced in 1964. In that time, the basic design has changed very little, which means good old Bill Ruger got it right first time. His simple blowback or inertia-type semi, with reliable action and revolutionary 10-shot rotary magazine, is still at the heart of 10/22s today and often forms the basis of custom rimfire rifles. (Read Bruce’s review of the Ruger 10/22 RB rimfire.)
Almost every conceivable type of variation has been made, and today we have the new revised Ruger 10/22 Takedown (TD) model which, as its name suggests, has a quick takedown barrel release mechanism so the rifle can be broken down to half the size for storage or travel. It comes in its own carry bag and retails for around £820.
I like the carry case for the Ruger 10/22 Takedown, which at only 25x11in opens up to double in size and contains two fold-out panels to rest on and construct the TD. There are two pockets with a scope rail and lock. The main compartment houses the two main sections of the gun held in pockets with Velcro retainers. There is a spare butt section with raised cheekpiece section, and two filler/stiffeners can be used to house a moderator if you so wish. It’s all very neat and easy to carry about.
The TD’s split length comprises 16.5in of barrelled section and 20in rear portion; 36.5in you say, but remember 2in of that is the barrel fitment into the action so the overall length is actually 34.5in. To fit the barrel, you first have to pull back the bolt slide in the barrel attachment to the fore-end with the flattened off section of the barrel parallel to the upper surface of the barrel locking platform. Slide in and rotate until the sprung retaining catch houses into the slot in the barrel housing. To release, pull the sprung catch inset into the fore-end and rotate the barrel off with the bolt retracted.
When the barrel is engaged in the correct position, you then need to tighten the large knurled securing wheel between the barrel and the action face. This ensures the barrel and action is correctly head-spaced.
The barrel is 16.5in with a heavyweight varmint profile of 0.92in, lending a good balance to the rifle overall at just over 34.5in. There is the addition of four large flutes to the top length and half lengths to the bottom of the barrel to save weight. The muzzle is threaded for ½in UNEF. The barrel is blued with a standard 1-in-16in rifling twist rate that is securely attached to the fore-end.
The action, other than the quick-disconnect attachment arrangement, is your classic 10/22 finished with black paint and drilled and tapped for a scope mounting base.
It is the same simple, reliable, inertia-type semi-automatic rimfire action of some 6.25in length, relying on the recoil of the fired case to cycle the action. The bolt is polished with an operating handle of ¾in with a smooth, curved face and is easy to cock.
There is a single claw extractor and the case is ejected by a small metal eject spur sited to the rear left of the action. Beneath the action sits a small lever in front of the trigger-guard that, when the bolt is in the rearmost position and this lever is depressed, holds open the bolt for cleaning.
The trigger is the BX type, so a pull of just 3lb 4oz was recorded, good for a semi and with a predictable single-stage operation. The simple cross-bolt safety is housed in the trigger-guard and blocks the trigger travel to make the rifle safe. In front of this is an extended lever that is the magazine release, which activates when pushed forward. This is the renowned Ruger rotary design holding 10 shots; it was reliable in the tests but best to keep the magazine clean. It’s strippable.
The stock is in two halves, obviously with the fore-end quite slim with stippled panels for extra grip and black colour, as with the butt section. This is quite short with a length of pull of 14in. The pistol grip has five raised stippled finger-sized panels for grip and a detaching cheekpiece arrangement. Ruger supplies two butt sections so you can have no cheekpiece or a raised cheekpiece. The extra butt has a raised cheekpiece 0.75in higher than the standard fitment. Overall, a pretty simple ambidextrous stock that is practical and weather-resistant.
I tried both subsonic and high-velocity (HV) rounds to ascertain reliability and accuracy from the TD.
I fitted a Leupold VX-3HD 2.5-8×36 scope and first subsonics were the Eleys with 38-grain (gr) hollow points; we had 981fps for 81ft/lb and 0.85in groups at 30 yards. Norma 40-gr subs are always quiet and accurate and proved true with 0.75in groups at a slow 966fps and 83ft/lb. I did try the TD at 50 yards and the best groups were the Norma, hovering about an inch.
Winchester Max Subsonic with their heavier 42-gr bullet shot 1.15in groups at 957fps and 85ft/lb, while the really consistent CCI Suppressor loads with their 45-gr bullet shot 0.95in groups at 958fps and impressive 92ft/lb.
Going HV, and although iffy on accuracy at 1.25in at 30 yards, the CCI Stinger with 32-gr Hollow Points shot 1,486 fps and 157ft/lb. Similarly, Federal Game Shok 31-gr Hollow Point shot a speedy 1361fps for 128ft/lb and inch groups. Best HV went to the RWS High Velocity 40-gr Hollow Points; I like these as they are consistent and today they shot 1,149fps and usable 117ft/lb energy with sub-inch groups.
I also wanted to test that when the TD was disassembled and then reassembled, the zero had not shifted too much. I had an average after shooting five groups with on/off barrel sequences of 0.85in group shift, usually upright. Keeping that tightening collar secure does make a difference so I would mark it and the receiver so you can align each time for consistency.
I believe the Ruger 10/22 Takedown to be primarily aimed at the American market, where outdoors backpacking is commonplace and a compact .22 is handy as a camp gun. Over here in the UK it will most likely appeal to pest controllers, rangers or farmers.
Ruger 10/22 Takedown rifle : tech specs
- Manufacturer Sturm Ruger
- Model 10/22 Takedown
- Action Semi-automatic
- Stock Plastic, two-piece
- Calibre .22LR
- Weight 5.3lb
- Barrel length 16.5in
- Overall length 34.5in
- Trigger Single stage
- Finish Blued and painted
- Magazine 10-shot rotary
This review was originally published in 2014 and has been updated.
It will most likely appeal to pest controllers, rangers or farmers