OK SPILL YOUR GUTS whaddya know about the Ruger MKI .22?


June 12, 2011, 08:31 PM
I think my father will give me a Ruger MK I but I want to know what you guys think about them because even a gift of a pistol to me is inevitably going to involve a considerable amount of time learning the parts, field stripping, investing whatever I can to upgrade it. I would like a .22 auto because it is the only gaping hole in my collection of firearms and I have a newly founded use for them- I joined a range with a .22 only silhouette range plus they have some competitions... No bragging here but I feel as if I can outshoot a lousy gun and I don't want the tool to be the weakest link... that is, I want a gun capable of accuracy equal to or better than my skills (if that makes sense).

So what do you folks think of the MK 1 - otherwise on the short list are the Colt woodsman (a first model ), a High Standard, or a browning buckmark 5.5 target se.

Any other suggestions welcome,

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June 12, 2011, 10:46 PM
Start learning now about how to disassemble it, or more importantly - reassembly.
It took me hours the first time I broke one down, or I should say it took me hours to get the bolt stop (?) to fall just right. I would read this -


451 Detonics
June 13, 2011, 12:07 AM
investing whatever I can to upgrade it

Why upgrade it? They work fine out of the box. I recently bought one and am more than satisfied with the way it shoots as it left the factory. They really don't need a thing done to them except perhaps grips depending on your hand size. If you can outshoot a Ruger Mk I you shoot be looking for a sponsor and joining the pro's on the circuit.

As for learning to field strip...that takes maybe 30 minutes if you are slow...

June 13, 2011, 12:15 AM
Lots of folks have found that it's all in the use of technique. If you search YouTube you'll find a few videos on folks that make stripping down and re-assembling the gun look pretty easy.

Here's one that I found explaned and demonstrated it quite well.


As for accuracy as long as the barrel hasn't been shot out due to many tens of thousands of rounds or some past accidental damage the gun should be able to shoot as accurately as you could wish for.

June 13, 2011, 01:00 AM
Nice! answer I was hoping for... field stripping doesn't look that intimidating just a little quirky.
I thought it might be a dud but now I'm pretty happy it's come my way!

June 13, 2011, 01:10 AM
Field stripping is horrible. It gets easier each time but mine is still a bear. You can't argue with how well they shoot though and they are as reliable as it gets.

June 13, 2011, 03:43 AM
I'm on my second Mk III and field stripping is no big deal. Reassembly is a breeze as long as you get the hammer in the fired position and just before you close the main spring point the Mk I straight up, pull trigger and close the main spring. I'm assuming that the MK I is enough like MK III in respect to field stripping. Enjoy!

Shadow 7D
June 13, 2011, 04:03 AM
it doesn't look that hard
compare that to most centerfire guns, pull a pin release the slide and it's done...

as for accuracy, I have a MKIII and other than trigger work, better sights and maybe a few other things that would take it to the true 'custom built' type gun...
so, short of dumping a grand plus... it's more accurate than me, and truthfully that money would be better spent on training (and ammo) than trying to wring out sub MOA performance before I can shoot Sub MOA.

June 13, 2011, 11:49 AM
I have a MK1 bull barrel with unscalloped bolt tube. Got it when the MSRP was $67.50, a week's wages. A new Ruger MK still costs about a week's wages. Anyhow, the only mod has been the addition of a set of Herter's thumbrest grips.

June 13, 2011, 01:07 PM
whaddya know about the Ruger MKI .22?
I know that my Ruger MkI has been collecting dust in the rack for a few years now, while my Buckmark is in the range bag every trip.
As a kid growing up in the 50's & 60's, I knew my life would never be complete until I owned a Ruger MkI pistol.
So, now that my life is complete, I prefer shooting the Browning. ;)


June 13, 2011, 01:28 PM
I know that lots of folks erroneously refer to the Standard Auto as "MKI". The MKI was the adjustable sighted target model.

I know that the one I owned was a wonderful shooter and very accurate, even though it had been around the block more than a few times when I bought it. I know that the MKII GC model I bought for a paltry $200 was also a wonderful shooter and very accurate. I sold or traded them both and wish I hadn't but understand why. I came to the conclusion that the steep grip angle of the MK-series (and Glocks) just does not agree with me and greatly preferred the Buckmark for shooting.

Then Ruger came out with the 22/45, which was the right angle but the molded grip frame was just too slick. Then they introduced the MKIII 22/45 "RP" model and I finally have a Ruger .22 auto that I can live with. After some new grips, Volquartsen trigger kit, removing the mag safety and the "slingshot mod", it is nearly the perfect all-around .22LR pistol. But I still want a new USFA Woodsman.


June 13, 2011, 01:31 PM
As an owner of a MKI.....
Yes, field stripping can be a bit intimidating but once you get the knack of it things get better. But they're accurate and will eat about any ammo you feed them.
If you want to "upgrade" one the trigger, hammer, and sear from the MKII's will fit. The factory mag holds 9 rounds but I've been told a MKII 10-round mag can be used. Midway has the mags on sale (actually right now) but they're back ordered. If you want to mount optics they're not D&T'd, your options are to get it D&T'd by a gunsmith or Ruger, use a B-Square clamp-on mount, or one like a Weigand that replaces the rear sight.
Over on Rimfirecentral.com there's a whole forum for the Ruger MKI-II-III series.

I also own an old Hi Standard Victor. While it's a sweet shooter it's picky about what ammo it will feed and shoot well. But now that I've got it tuned for CCI SV's it hasn't skipped a beat in several hundred rounds now. But it's meant to be a target gun, not a plinker. And being that it has a military grip it's a nice compliment to my 1911.

June 13, 2011, 01:45 PM
I own a Ruger Mk. II and a Buck Mark. I've shot my uncle's Woodsman and a friend's Hi-Standard.

Field stripping the Mk. I is no problem... unless you're a crybaby who expects every gun to come apart like a combat auto. You do have to read the manual or have good directions from elsewhere. There are a couple points where gravity plays a role, but it is not difficult.

The same people who criticize the Ruger design and go on to praise the Buck Mark are neglecting to mention that on the Buck Mark, the sight rail must come off every time the gun is field stripped, and an allen wrench is needed to field strip it. (a new Ruger will need a tool to pry up the take-down lever and a mallet, if the gun hasn't been apart much) To me, the Ruger is a superior design, because throughout the whole take-down process, the sights stay aligned; they are attached to the elegant tubular barrel/receiver, which is one integral piece.

The Browning instructions say not to field strip the gun. Just clean it as best we can by opening the slide. When it gets so dirty it jams, we are instructed to bring it to a gunsmith. I don't know about you, but that is completely unacceptable to me.

On the plus side for the Buck Mark is that the trigger from the factory is better. Lighter, and with less overtravel. Not a huge difference, but it is worth mentioning.

The Mk. I has no last shot bolt hold-open, and the magazine release is at the bottom of the grip. You can't really have any fantasies about this being a tactical gun. But it sounds like you're grounded in the reality of it being a target gun.

The Woodsman is collectible, and you might have troubles finding a way to mount an adjustable sight, if it doesn't already have one.

Hi Standards were real live target guns, but the company's gone now, so parts might be an issue at some point.

In the end, I'd go with the Ruger. It has a great combination of:

Classic design: this gun is a huge part of why Ruger is a successful company these days
Aftermarket and factory support is still existing, even though it is a 60 or 70 year old design now. You can easily improve the trigger and sights if you want to.

Does this particular Mk. I have adjustable sights? If you get them on the gun to start with, it will save you a chunk of change in the near future. You can't do any serious target shooting with fixed sights.

If you're not a sentimental person at all, the Buck Mark is a good gun. It just doesn't have much historical value, as its design is kind of a combination of guns that preceded it. (Hi-Standard, Woodsman)

My Mk. II was my first gun purchase when I turned 21 back in 1997. I still shoot it regularly.

You can see the Mk. II and Buck Mark in the top row of this pic:

Last of all, it sounds like your father is planning towards the Mk. I, and it is best not to be choosy about one's gifts. They're all good guns, after all.

June 13, 2011, 06:25 PM
I love my MK1, purchased it 40 years ago and it is my go to .22. Anyone who tells you its a bear to take down and reassemble is a JERK. I read that stuff all the time, it is very easy if you take the time to read how to do it. Its a great gun enjoy it. The MK1 is a classic.

June 13, 2011, 09:08 PM
I have a Ruger Standard Model .22--what most of you call a Mark I. I bought it new sometime in the 1970s for less than $100, probably a lot less. It's the most abused and neglected gun I've ever owned. It continues to work perfectly and hit what you want to hit despite my neglect.

As for disassembly/reassembly...no big deal. I disassembled it exactly one time, when it was new. Like to never got the sucker back together again. Since then, it's been brake cleaner or Gun Scrubber to flush it out, bore solvent in the chamber and barrel and a little oil on the bolt and spring, followed by an oily rag wipe down. That's all it needs to keep running perfectly.

June 13, 2011, 09:11 PM
I have four Ruger MK II's. All are very accurate, and very reliable and one has a VQ trigger, but otherwise stock as are the other three.

Dissasembly, cleaning and reassembly is a breeze especially when you read the manual the first few times.

June 27, 2011, 03:36 PM
Here's my "Standard" (RST4S [man. 06/82]). Growing up my father had an MKI that he picked up back in the 60's. I always thought that was the coolest looking pistol. Recently, my brother gifted me with this RST4S - what an unexpected surprise. Now, my son and I love to take this to the range with my other pistols and shoot. No doubt, this will get passed down to my son when he's a bit older.

And yes, tear down is awful. In pre-youtube days I may have sold this - now that I understand how to disassemble/reassemble it, it is not a problem.

June 27, 2011, 03:57 PM
I took the Mark I to the range last weekend. The bad - my father says both mags are like new, weren't stored loaded but they only feed up to 6 reliably, loaded more than that it jams, looks like a rough spot on the feeding ramp or maybe just needs a really good scrubbing. I'm going to watch a few of the videos and break it down ASAP.
The good- wells there's a WHOLE LOT of good about this pistol. It is the target model which I think just has a longer barrel and adjustable sights. The fact that it doesn't have a last round open I am looking as a blessing- it FORCES me to count my shots EVERY time, which I used to do as a kid but since being spoiled with last round hold open on everything I own I have recently gotten a little sloppy with. Also a GREAT pistol to teach kids shooting for that reason and the fact it is in .22. I wouldn't want all my guns to not have last round hold open but for one .22 that's probably a good thing.
I only modestly cleaned it before taking it out but it shoots as good or better than I am capable of. I was using Federal Gold and RWS Match lubed lead and on the silhouette range I was hitting 3" round targets at 40 yards open sights. If I get into any competition it would probably be 3-gun so for now it's just about perfect.

June 27, 2011, 04:04 PM
I also inherited a Ruger Mark I. The only reason I do not shoot it is because I found that the barrel was nearly smooth. I could find only a hint of rifling and while I had it fully stripped, I saw that a tab was cracked. The tab in the breakdown lever. It did not affect function, just easy of assembly. While looking into getting some new parts, barrel, I bought a Bull Barrel Mark III and LOVE it.

June 27, 2011, 04:07 PM
I am eventually getting one of those funky Volquarstens Stingray is cool!

June 27, 2011, 10:52 PM
Follow the instructions and no problemo. Take it when it is offered.

I had a chance for a Woodsman about 45 yrs ago. Wish I had asked the boss to buy it and paid him back couple bucks/week.

June 27, 2011, 10:54 PM
I've been shooting my MK I 6-7/8 since early 1970's. Great gun and is just as accurate today.

ol' scratch
June 28, 2011, 09:55 AM
I love my Ruger Mark III. There isn't much difference between the Mark I and the Mark III. I would like my Mark III even more if Ruger hadn't put all the crap on it to keep me 'safe.' :rolleyes:

June 28, 2011, 10:12 AM
I have one of the "Ruger Standards" which is the shorter barreled fixed sight version of the Mk 1. It works well enough. It's very accurate, and it's doesn't tend to jam, but every now and then I'll get misfires. I think that's usually ammo related though. Typically happens with the absolute cheapo ammo and typically at a rate of about 1 round per 50 or so. If I use CCI Mini-mags it doesn't typically exhibit that problem.

I have to say I LOVE the grip angle too. Points very naturally for me. I really didn't think it would be comfortable looking at it, but if there's anything I've learned while I've been shooting its been that just because some handguns look odd doesn't mean they'll feel that way in the hand.

I kinda DO wish I had put the money I paid for it into a Mk2 though. The bolt doesn't hold open on the last shot like it does with the Mk2 (it will hold open via the safety if you want, but that's a manual operation), which means that I tend to snap after the last round quite a bit. Also, the Mk2 mags hold an extra round, and the gun itself is compatible with a much greater variety of upgrades.

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