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..So a Ruger 77/44 followed me home yesterday

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by GJgo, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. GJgo

    GJgo Well-Known Member

    I was at a local shop or two yesterday and there was an omen in the air. I came across a used Ruger 96/44 lever in great shape, a used Ruger 99/44 semi-auto in great shape, and a brand new Ruger 77/44 bolt action. What are the odds! After some serious deliberation I picked up the 77. :D

    Since the range was "on the way home" I tried it out! I really like it, the thing's got quite a thump though. I had a box of my 240gr XTP handloads on hand that run about 1430 with flat primers through my 629 Classic. I didn't chrony them in the carbine, but they're moving right along. The primers also weren't near as flat, so I'm glad that the rifle runs safer with these loads.

    Doing some reading I came across the one thing that guys say actually does make an improvement in the accuracy of these 2-piece bolt Rugers which is to run a shim between the two bolt halves to tighten it up. Link to article So, I got on McMaster's website and ordered up a 10 pack of .002" 18-8 stainless shims, I figure I can stack them until I get it spot on. I'll do some before & after testing & post the results later.

    Overall I really like this thing, and look forward to using it for a handy, carbine size, truck-and-camping type brush rifle. Etc... 44 Mag is such a versatile round. Anyone else have one of these & any good stories to go along with it?
  2. GJgo

    GJgo Well-Known Member

    So I broke the action out of the stock today to get a good look at things. The front action screw was very tight in the brass pillar, and the rear screw was not tight at all through the plastic stock. I imagine it's easy to deform. I thought it was interesting that there's no real recoil lug in the action- well sort of, but it's in the rear and up against not-too-solid looking plastic. I also located the heavy pressure point at the front of the stock.

    From searching other forums some guys have floated the fore-end & glass bedded the action tang, with mixed results. I figure why not, it's free! I've also read that some guys get an aftermarket sear & spring kit, while others just clip 1/2-1 coil off the spring. The stock trigger doesn't have any overtravel, but it is 7lb with a slight bit of creep.
  3. ECVMatt

    ECVMatt Well-Known Member

    Those rifles have always intrigued me. Hope it shoots for you. I will be watching your posts.


  4. GJgo

    GJgo Well-Known Member

    Last week I floated the stock forend & I clipped a coil & a half off the trigger spring- this is as far as I could go & keep a decent amount of preload on the spring. It passes the bump / drop test & it brought the trigger down to 6 lbs. Crisp, but heavy.

    Today I went to the range with some shims to test the theory from above. After fouling the bore the 3-shot group I shot w/ no shims was pretty bad- 3.9" at 50 yards. As soon as I put in a shim it shrunk down to about an inch & a half & pretty much stayed there as I added more. The best was up at .006" shim & I got a .9" 3-shot group at 50. I'll need to go back & do more testing to prove it, I only had a few rounds today. My first impression though is that the shims do work. Heck, though, this was all with the open sights- I'd be very happy if it stayed at around an inch @ 50 with the irons! :)

    More testing to come including stock screw torque.
  5. Dr T

    Dr T Well-Known Member

    Back when I was playing with my 77 in 270, the suggestion was to get the front stock screw up to snug and then give it 1/2 turn. The rear screw is snug enough to not back out, but the front was was thought at the time to be more important. It shoots .75" at 100 with good loads.

    I will be interested to get your take on screw torque.
  6. GJgo

    GJgo Well-Known Member

    Well, the front action screw in this thing is in a brass pillar so I suspect tight is tight. I'm curious about playing with the rear screw since a)it's in a plastic stock & b) the "recoil lug" is behind the magazine. Odd, but hey, it is what it is. :)

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