Ruger Red Label


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distra
November 21, 2007, 12:14 AM
Well I picked up a Stoeger Competition Combo a couple weeks ago thinking it would be a good "value" gun 12 ga & 20 barrels, adjustable comb, and nice wood for ~$700. It worked fine for 200 rds then the wheels fell off the cart and I started get light primer strikes=FTF issues. Right now it is back at Benelli getting fixed. So I picked up a replacement "value" gun a used 20ga Ruger Red Label with 30" barrels and 5 chokes for right a $1K out the door. It seems in great condition with no blemishs and does not appear to have been used much. Furniture is in great shape. I have not fired it yet, but hope to tomorrow. So is that a decent deal or right on par with what it's worth?

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Dave McCracken
November 21, 2007, 09:57 AM
Not a great bargain, used RLs here run about that. Good shotgun, though.

distra
November 21, 2007, 01:16 PM
That is what I figured. It was not a screaming deal, but I think the quality over the Stoeger is much more than the $300 difference. I hope it will last a good deal longer as well.

ArmedBear
November 21, 2007, 04:02 PM
30" 20 Gauge? Sounds kinda toothpicky. How do you like it?

If it has similar trouble to the Stoeger, Ruger will fix it. Happened to a guy I shot trap league with. You will have to ship it to them, which is a PITA, but Ruger really backs up what they make.

That said, a lot of long-time shotgunners, with 'smithing knowledge and experience with all sorts of shotguns, seem to have a low opinion of Red Labels, mainly due to rough interior surfaces and loose fit. It was enough to steer me away from them.

However, people shoot the things for years without trouble, and guys who have them seem to love them.

Can anyone shed some light on this apparent dichotomy?

distra
November 21, 2007, 04:34 PM
30" 20 Gauge? Sounds kinda toothpicky. How do you like it?

Nope not at all. It is actually just a little lighter than the Stoeger (20 ga barrels). It swings nice and points well, now let's see if I can hit anything with it. :D

That said, a lot of long-time shotgunners, with 'smithing knowledge and experience with all sorts of shotguns, seem to have a low opinion of Red Labels, mainly due to rough interior surfaces and loose fit. It was enough to steer me away from them.


They have not seen the inside of Stoeger:eek: Now that's rough. I may not be as experienced, but the RL seemed pretty tight to me. I know several shooters who really like their RL and think its extremely reliable. Plus it's made in CT and to me that's a plus. :D

ArmedBear
November 21, 2007, 04:44 PM
They have not seen the inside of Stoeger Now that's rough.

I have, though, and you're right! I'm tempted, though, since it's cheap (at least if I don't get a barrel set, which I don't think I need).

I know several shooters who really like their RL and think its extremely reliable.

Me, too. Those who do get them, like them. Only one guy had a problem, after a lot of use, and Ruger fixed it for free. Living in CT is definitely a plus. If it breaks, you can just run it over there. Shipping a 12 gauge O/U from CA to CT is non-trivial, I gathered.

Both parts that have broken on Rugers I own were just replaced by mail, no questions asked, immediately. CS at Ruger is first-rate. I guess the shotgun required some more technical work; the parts I replaced were easy drop-ins by anyone with some understanding of how things work.

Tom Held
November 21, 2007, 07:07 PM
About 5 years ago I bought a pair of Rugers, a 20 and 28, each with 30" barrels. I've shot the crap out of them in Argentina, as many as 2,000 rounds a day for 5 days straight. With the cheap ammo over there the ejectors kinda froze up every 10 boxes but a shot of gun scrubber put me back in business. You have a solid gun that will service you for many years backed by one of the few remaining American gun makers. The price was right. Just my opinion. Tom

tkendrick
November 21, 2007, 10:12 PM
I bought a stoeger in the mid 60's. Swore to myself I would never buy another one, eventually gave it to a guy that had to have it to "practice gunsmithing" or some such.

Four years ago I broke my promise and bought another one.

3 month's later I beat it flat with a sledge hammer and threw it in the trash.

I generally don't like to bad mouth anyone's gun....but in the case of stoeger I just can't help it.

Jack2427
November 22, 2007, 12:51 AM
I have O/Usby Beretta, Browning, Winchester and Ruger. For my money the Ruger was the best bang for the buck, add to that the lifetime warranty and I think I have an overall winner.

New_geezer
November 22, 2007, 01:55 AM
a lot of long-time shotgunners, with 'smithing knowledge and experience with all sorts of shotguns, seem to have a low opinion of Red Labels, mainly due to rough interior surfaces and loose fit. It was enough to steer me away from them.

However, people shoot the things for years without trouble, and guys who have them seem to love them.

Can anyone shed some light on this apparent dichotomy?

Based solely on what I have read over the years, the RRL, unlike most Ruger products, had/has a higher than average number of lemons produced. If you get a good gun, it's a great gun but if you had problems initially, problems seemed to plague that gun. Since the problem seems one of inconsistant quality rather than fundamental flaws in design or material you would think it would be corrected, given Ruger's reputation. Perhaps it has.

I've never read precisely how bad the problem was/is. For instance, if the average industry problem rate was 5% of the guns produced and 10% of RRLs had problems, that's double the average rate but still 90% of the guns are good. Even so, FWIW, the sense I get from much reading is that the RRL is considered a bit over-priced compared to the competition. But who's to say if you own one and are very happy with it.

ArmedBear
November 22, 2007, 09:34 AM
Overpriced compared to all those other mass-produced American O/U's?:p

It's in the same ballpark as an SKB 585 and a bit cheaper than a Browning Abrams Citori.

Hard to say what out there is cheaper, except for Turkish guns that have a well-earned bad reputation, even if they have gotten a lot better this year as some claim.

Red Label
November 22, 2007, 09:43 AM
I've got a 12ga Ruger with the 30" barrels and love the thing. Like you said, the guys that have them love them. It's the people who don't have one that like to trash it. To me its more than a low end gun. It's a much better value than most people think AND made here!:D Enjoy it. There is no comparison to the low end Stoegers and such.

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