Ruger 77/22 - opinions?


November 17, 2008, 09:31 PM
Found a gently used stainless w/composite stocked 77/22 this afternoon, asking price $275. I checked the 2007 edition of GUN VALUES and that price is on-par; in other words, fair and not a smokin' hot deal.

What's the opinion of Ruger 77/22s as far as accuracy & reliability? The more I read about Ruger, the common perception is that triggers need work, accuracy is hit/miss, and the stock (on this model) is a bit small for big guys. much of that is true? The stock is small, but it felt good to me, and the action was butter smooth. Gun was clean. Realizing that any gun can ge a lemon, are my chances going to be favoring this as a minute-of-squirrel gun at 100 yards, or will it be grouping like a 12 gauge?

If I do this, I'll let my Remington 597 go in a private sale to another kid who needs a good .22.


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November 18, 2008, 02:01 AM
I had a wood/blue version of that rifle a few years ago and let it go. One I wish I had kept. To be honest I cannot recall exactly how accurate it was. They tend to be a little better than 10/22's.

I currently have the CZ 452 American and it is truly a tackdriver and I would think they are more accurate than the Ruger. I paid $279 for mine new 3 years ago. They are probably a bit more now. Mine shoots 1/2" groups easily at 50 yards and I have shot a few 5 shot groups under 3/8".

I like both rifles and would buy a Ruger again if I ever got a deal on one but feel the CZ is the more accurate of the 2.

November 18, 2008, 02:20 AM
I only got my 77/22 recently, so my experience is relatively brief and limited to the model I have.

That being said, I'm 6'1" tall with long arms and it never even occurred to me that the stock didn't fit right. Like you said, it feels great. At 6.5 pounds and 39.25" in length, it feels like a "real" rifle and avoids the flimsy or toy-like feeling you sometimes get with .22 rifles. I was really impressed by the quality of fit and finish, all the way down to the bottom metal (which is actually metal).

Out of the box, the trigger was really heavy to the point that the force required to pull the trigger was torquing the rifle off target. Additionally, there was a teensy bit of creep right before let-off. Replacing the sear with a Timney sear produced a spectacular improvement. The creep is diminished, but still present (it must live in either the trigger/sear or sear/bolt interface).

Another thing that went on the gun was a Shooter's Ridge bipod. This is a cheap knock-off of the Harris bipod, but it's not like a .22's punishing recoil is going to destroy it. Shooting prone with the bipod and bulk ammo, my 77/22 makes 25-yard groups that can be covered by a nickel. (Maybe a dime, but I didn't have any other coins on me.) This can probably be improved on with practice, as I'm still learning my way around the rifle. While putting the new sear in, I noted that the barrel floats free (mostly) between the receiver and the front of the stock, where the wood locks tight around the barrel. Given the inletting prior to this point, it's probably an intentional attempt on the part of Ruger to create a pressure node.

Oh yeah, there's one more thing that's to like: 10/22 mags will work with the 77/22, although the 10-rounders don't seem to fit perfectly flush--must be a minor design difference. They feed fine, though. It's hilarious to see a bolt-action rifle with a 30-round magazine jutting out the bottom.

Hope that helps. Although a Savage or CZ will probably give more bang for the buck when it comes to trigger and accuracy, the Ruger's quality makes it a joy to own and shoot.

41 magnum fan
November 18, 2008, 02:46 AM
I have a 77/22.Mine has been trouble free.It will shoot quarter sized groups at 50 yards.The 77/22 is my most favorite stock.I am a big guy,but this rifle fits me fine.Used 77/22 rifles around here usally sell for around $325 to $350.

November 18, 2008, 03:00 AM
the 77/22 is built like a mac truck, very tough, very reliable, will last forever with the minimum of care, but not that accurate. compared to, well, anything else.
If you are going for strait accuracy it's not the way to go, if you want a well built rifle that will stand the test of time, it's the way to go. And a ton of aftermarket parts.

And I believe that Midway is having a sale on their rifle basix triggers. $64 I think.

November 18, 2008, 04:52 AM
I own a Ruger 77/22 and could not be more pleased with the rifle. Just get it you wont be sorry.

November 18, 2008, 06:33 AM
I have wanted a 77/22 since they came out. I recently got one, made in 1984 judging by the serial number. It is by far the best looking, best shooting, rifle I've ever owned.

I'm no great rifle shot, not even shooting from a rest, but the rifle shot 10 shot groups about the size of a dime when sighting in at 25 yards. That's outside edge of the hole to outside edge. That was using good ol' Wally World Federal bulk pack HP ammo. I'm sure I could improve on those groups with a little time spent hunting for the right ammo, but it's "good enough" for squirrel hunting. Now, I don't know if the trigger has been worked or not, I got the rifle used, but it seems, when I think "shoot", the gun shoots.

It's dropped a pretty fair number of squirrels for me already.

$275.00 frankly seems like a steal to me. I paid $425.00 for mine recently (with the scope) and was tickled to get it for that price. A new one sells for about $500.00 (no scope and on sale, $575 was "list" price IIRC.) around here.

November 18, 2008, 07:56 AM
I can pretty much mirror CajunBass's comments on his first year 77/22. I also bought mine used and it came with a superb trigger and accuracy has not been disappointing at all. These are well-built, full-sized rifles that are a joy to shoot and own.
As for dependability, since it's a bolt action you shouldn't have much to worry about. The 10 round rotary mags are top notch and don't stick out the bottom of the stock like so many other mags.
I think the price you mentioned would be a fantastic deal, so what are you waiting on...?

November 18, 2008, 08:16 AM
Good friend of mine has one and its a great gun. His is the stainless/skeleton stock and if feels fine in my hands when firing (I'm 6'3", big frame, festively plump). We routinely put clay pigeons on the burm at 100 and 150 and plink them to chips. His is pretty old, was his father's gun. Nice piece.

November 18, 2008, 08:30 AM
Bought one of the magnum ones when they came out in the early '90's.

Was sub-MOA at 100yds using the factory trigger.

November 18, 2008, 09:11 AM
$275 is the best "used-like-new" price I've seen on them in ages.


November 18, 2008, 10:47 AM
[grunt] I called this morning to see if they still have it. I mis-read the tag, apparantly; it's $299 and - no - he won't do $300 cash OTD.

Forgot to has the rings but no scope.

Still a "GO FOR IT" deal?


November 18, 2008, 10:54 AM
If you want a nice .22 rifle it's time to get out your checkbook. That extra $24 will be forgotten, and rightfully so, within 48 hours.


Ol` Joe
November 18, 2008, 11:00 AM
Still a "GO FOR IT" deal?

If you don`t buy it I`d jump on it, if I wasn`t already eyeballing a rifle closer to home.
I`ve had a 77/22 since the early 80`s and love it. They were built to offer a quality 22 rifle of centerfire proportions and it does that well. Mine will drop ten rds in 3/4"-1" all day at 50 yds, with ammo it likes of course. I realize that is not benchrest rifle accuracy, but for tree rats and pop cans it does stellar service.

November 18, 2008, 11:39 AM
I called the store and had them put it back for me. Santa has come early.

Anyone know of an inexpensive, stainless-looking scope that would match this stainless Ruger but still let it live up to its potential?


November 18, 2008, 05:50 PM
Anyone know of an inexpensive, stainless-looking scope that would match this stainless Ruger but still let it live up to its potential?

I've got an inexpensive, silver colored, fixed power (4X32) Bushnell that I got at Gander Mountain for a Wally World Special 10/22 . I think it cost about $40.00 or so. I know there are better scopes, but to tell you truth, I'm quite happy with these (I've got two others in black). They're clear as a bell, and hold zero just fine. They make a 3x9 version for a few bucks more.

Here's mine on the 10/22.

The scope on my 77/22 is a Simmons 1027 (2X7X32), but I'm reasonably sure it's as old as the rifle, and that particular model has probably been discontinued.

November 18, 2008, 06:31 PM
Decent little squirrel rifles. Accuracy is usually minute of squirrel (not much better than that). If I had to go out and get another 22, it would be a CZ.

Chuck Dye
November 18, 2008, 07:35 PM
Have had the stainless/synthetic (under a Leupold 2-7x28 Rimfire Special I can recommend) for 15 years and uncounted thousands of rounds. With bulk ammo and sandbags it delivers about 3 MOA, half that with the spendy stuff it likes. I find it a tad toylike in its handling but no so much that I have done anything to it. I have no love at all for the stirrup style sling loops and even less for the improbability of successfully switching to a quick disconnect and stud style.

FWIW, the 77/22 magazines are functionally interchangeable with the 10/22's. The 10/22 mags have radiused bottoms that work well on the 10/22 but protrude slightly from the 77/22. To me the difference is negligible, a friend finds my 77/22 mags a bit of a nuisance to remove from his 10/22.

Edit to add: Wups! I see Uncle Mike's now offers the swivel fix (, wonder how long that's been around!

November 18, 2008, 08:39 PM

I had a 77/22 for quite a few years. Bought it shortly after they came out. It took thousands of rounds for the trigger to become acceptable, never great, just acceptable. However, and this is very important, do your ammo testing!

My 77/22 was extremely accurate once I found out what it wanted to shoot. What worked for me isn't in the equation for you; consecutive S/N guns can have completely different preferences in ammo. But it was a reliable gopher shooter to 100 yards. One shot, one dead Montana gopher.

I wound up putting a Simmons original Whitetail Classic 4-12X A/O on it. Great scope for the gun without spending more than about $125.00 delivered. Not only did it work very well, the black crackle finish and the boat-oar stock didn't clash either.


Chuck Dye
November 18, 2008, 08:48 PM
Forgot to add: The gun shop I bought my 77/22 from suggested I try a rifle adapted version of trigger boosting. With an empty rifle held vertically, press the rear of the firing pin down against a non-marring surface (I used an overturned dairy crate) and pull the trigger. After a dozen or so repetitions, I had a notably smoother and (I think) slightly lighter trigger.

All the normal caveats apply. Observe the usual safety procedures. If you do damage or otherwise do not like your results, you are on your own.

November 18, 2008, 09:12 PM
+1 for "CB900F's" comments.

.22lr firearms are so picky about ammo so often they can drive you bananas.
But when you find the ammo a particular gun likes it's all grand fun from there.

Good luck !


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