Ruger M77 Barrel Questions


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Jon_Snow
January 12, 2009, 12:55 PM
Does anyone know if the Ruger M77 Mark II stock barrels are free-floating? I don't think they are, but I'm not sure. If not, what would it take to free-float one? Is it as simple as inletting the stock some more or is there something else I'm missing?

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codybrown
January 12, 2009, 07:58 PM
The "normal" stocks aren't free floated, you would just have to sand out the barrel channel. I also recommend resealing the bare wood. If you're talking ab out the KM77VT's, they are free floated. I'm not sure about the synthetics, but I'm under the impression you are talking about the wood ones.

Chawbaccer
January 12, 2009, 08:06 PM
You can do a quick temporary free float by putting a couple thickness of business card or other under the action. Pull a dollar bill down the bottom of the barrel and see if it slides easily under the fore stock. If you like the results then work on free floating the barrel.

Jon_Snow
January 13, 2009, 04:00 PM
I do have a synthetic stock, and it is not the target model, just the standard All-Weather. I'll give the business card trick a try. Thanks.

JackOfAllTradesMasterAtNone
January 14, 2009, 02:57 AM
Why do you want to free float the barrel? Is accuracy not what you expect from your rifle? The business card trick only works for a few shots as the recoil just smashes the cardboard. If you do anything as a test, you want to use some thin plastic where the action mates to the stock. Just a layer or few that is about as thick as copier paper. Just enough so you can slide that dollar bill between the barrel and the stock. Thing is, the composite stocks rarely put enough pressure on a barrel to affect accuracy, (unless they are really poor fitting). For a hunting rifle, you should be most learned about where the first cold barrel shot hits. Once a barrel has cooled, will it impact in the same place as the first cold shot? The Ruger composit stocks are a loose fit in my book. The best thing you can do, (oh, OK, along with making sure the barrel isn't touching the stock) is glass bed the action/stock. Brownells Acra Glass is what most of us non-gunsmiths use. If done right, glass bedding will just set the stock away from the barrel anyway, so you won't need to do any inletting. Pillar bedding the stock for the action screws is a good move. Tightening down on plastic is... Well it's tightening down on plastic. Here is an example of the process: Pillar Bedding instructions (http://www.scorehi.com/pillar%20installation.htm) (I do not know this guy, but I didn't want to write it all down. Reading his site, his instructions look pretty good. I Googled "Pillar Bedding".)

-Steve

Jon_Snow
January 14, 2009, 04:24 PM
Jack, I use my rifle mostly for squirrel hunting and target shooting from the bench. The accuracy is great, for about the first four shots, then it opens up significantly. If I give it time to cool, my groups go back down, so I don't think it's a fouling issue. I'd heard that a barrel that is not free-floated will be more affected by heat than one that is, so I thought I'd give it a try. I was going to just use the business card trick to find out if free-floating would help, then move to a more permanent solution.

JackOfAllTradesMasterAtNone
January 20, 2009, 06:03 PM
Well, most of us freefloat a barrel because at different temperatures, a wood stock is apt to curl and can put pressure on a barrel. Thus affecting consistancy/accuracy of the barrel.

What you're describing is barrel warm up, which is a natural affect of the metal to flex as it's heated. If the barrel is flexing on a tight stock that is stable, you could see some limited improvement.

You'll probably benefit the most from glass bedding the action in the stock. Through the process, relieve the stock from the barrel. The barrel will still change point of impact as it warms up, but your groups be better.

-Steve

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