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Used Ruger Mk III Target

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Doublehelix, May 17, 2018.

  1. Doublehelix
    • Contributing Member

    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    I have a line on a used Ruger Mk III target model that has been upgraded with a fluted Tactical Solutions Pac-Lite 4.5" barrel:

    https://www.tacticalsol.com/2245-and-mk-series-upgrades/pac-lite-45-threaded-barrel

    The gun looks to be in mint condition (seriously). The seller is a work colleague whom I respect greatly and I'd like to make him a fair offer, but not get hosed on the deal either.

    It comes with all of the original paperwork, the carrying case, 2 mags, even the Ruger padlock.

    He is also including the stock barrel (which is the serialized piece).

    He has about ten .22 pistols, most of the S&W, and he says he likes the S&W guns much better. The only reason is offering to sell it is because I was asking him about it. He thinks the trigger is horrible, and he is just not a Mark III fan (although he still has a couple of Mark I's that he is keeping for sentimental value.

    I was thinking in the $425-450 range. Thoughts???
     
  2. Milt1

    Milt1 Member

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    If I were you, I'd check prices on the internet for used MKIII's. I think you're paying more because of his upgrades and if you like what he's done then it may be worth it to you. It's like putting additional chrome pieces on a Harley. When you sell the Harley you're not expecting people to reimburse you for the upgrades that you did.
     
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  3. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

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    You are basically getting two guns for one money since it has the aftermarket upper and factory upper....I think 450 would be cheap.
     
  4. springer99

    springer99 Member

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    I'd go along with this suggestion. A new, stock bull-barreled Mk III 22/45 should go for around $350 and the new Mk IV around $425. The "blinged-out" Pac barrel doesn't add much to the deal, unless the look really does it for you.
     
  5. CajunBass

    CajunBass Member

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    I'd offer $400.00. You can always go up if he balks, but you can't go down if he jumps on your offer. Personally I wouldn't care about the Pac-Lite stuff, but you probably like it since it's apparently on the gun now.

    I used to have a MK III, 22/45 with a 4" bull barrel. One of, if not the most accurate handguns I've ever owned. Should have never sold it.
     
  6. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    Thanks for the advice folks.

    This all started because I have been looking to get a Ruger Mk IV Competition (with the 6.88" barrel), and when he heard me talking about it, he asked if I wanted to buy his Mark III because he hated it compared to his S&W's.

    As mentioned, the gun is truly in MINT condition (it looks as if new), but it is not exactly what I wanted. I would prefer the easy take-down of the Mark IV, and the longer competition barrel would be nice from an accuracy standpoint, but...

    The gun I want (new) is north of $600 ($625 at my LGS), and this one sort of fell into my lap.

    The same LGS has a used Mark III Target for $395 that looks to be in pretty good shape with the standard barrel, and since I am getting both the Tactical Solutions barrel and the Ruger barrel in the deal, I am torn.

    Any comments on expected performance differences between the 4.5" barrel and the 6.8" barrel? I can deal with the take-down if I have to, I am not really worried about that, but I would like the gun to be somewhat of a tack-driver.

    I brought some ammo, but have not had a chance to get to range yet to test it, and now we are expecting storms and heavy rain all weekend. :fire:
     
  7. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

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    I have both long and short MK guns. I prefer and shoot better the longer barrelled guns due to their sight radius.
     
  8. springer99

    springer99 Member

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    As far as inherent accuracy goes, the barrel length won't make any difference as Ruger Mk's tend to be very accurate out of the box. Ammo will make a difference, and CCI standard velocity would be a good one to try first. With open sights, a longer barrel might be easier for some to hold a good sight picture, but I much prefer the standard length bull barrel for balance and handling. If you decide to add a red-dot sight or scope to it, then barrel length(in terms of accuracy) is a non-issue.
     
  9. 340PD

    340PD Member

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    I have a short barreled MKIII hunter with Volquartsen guts. once you follow a couple of videos the takedown takes all of 15 seconds. I strongly recommend getting rid of the mag disconnect and install a VQ trigger and sear. Mine has over 100,000 rounds with a few minor replacement parts needed. I hear really good things about the barrel upgrade but as others have stated, upgrades don't always translate into a much higher price. $400-450 sounds like a good price.

    MKIII_Hunter.jpg
     
  10. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    This has been my experience also.

    Another thing to bear in mind is that you are buying two pistols for the price of one...Each upper/barrel is a separate pistol
     
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  11. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    As tempting as this deal is (two barrels = "2 guns", sort of), I took it to the local indoor range on the way home from work yesterday and put a few rounds downrange...

    Yuck. :uhoh:

    I was in a hurry so I did not spend a lot of time, and I did not bring a rest or any sandbags, but at 15 yards, I was spraying all over a 6" circle. Nothing consistent (like all-left or all-right).

    I only had time for 6 magazine loads (60 rounds), and at the end, I was really concentrating and trying to be as accurate as I could. Not good.

    I understand that I am not used to the gun or the sights, but I would expect to be able to shoot better than that, whether it was me (probably) or the gun.

    Just to ground myself, I loaded up two 20-round magazines of 9mm in my SIG Legion P226 SAO and had a large golf ball-sized group with a few flyers, and I was blasting pretty quickly with fairly extreme rapid-fire towards the end. I am obviously more familiar with this gun and the sights. I did not expect miracles out of the Ruger, but I left feeling pretty disappointed.

    If the weather holds this weekend, I will take it to my regular (outdoor) range and test again, and I will bring my pistol rest and sandbags to see how much of that spray was the gun, and how much was my horrible shooting.

    I tested 40 rounds of CCI Blazer (40 gr) and 20 rounds of Aguila Super Extra (40 gr) which is pretty much what they had available at Cabela's when I stopped by (other than Winchester White box and some Remington). Not sure how much of this is an ammo issue since I have read on here that these guns are picky when it comes to ammo choices.

    I have also heard (!) that the .22 LR cartridge was made for rifles, and therefore uses a fairly slow powder, which does not shoot as well with shorter barrels (the powder does not burn fully). As I mentioned at the beginning of this thread, my original desire was to get the Ruger Mk IV Competition with the 6.8" barrel. Probably less convenient for carrying around and plunking, but more accurate ultimately.

    My plans for this gun are two-fold:
    1. Try to get something with low recoil for my wife to enjoy (she shoots my 9mm guns just fine, but does not really like them). It needs to be accurate enough so that she feels encouraged when shooting.
    2. Accurate enough for shooting Steel Challenge matches.
    As great a deal as this might be, it may not be the gun for me at this time, but I need some more testing to be sure.
     
  12. beag_nut

    beag_nut Member

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    I don't understand why the original barrel was replaced. That Mark design has what may be the most accurate concept, execution, and reputation of all low-to-moderate .22 pistols in the world. Perhaps the original owner is a klutz? And he thought a new barrel would solve his problem? Were it me, I would simply buy a new Mark IV, and be done with it. My 6" Mark I is scarily accurate, and earned me several trophies and awards.
     
  13. Milt1

    Milt1 Member

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    beag_nut, fully agree! I have a MKII with the tapered barrel and I shot a five shot group at 25 yards using a hand held rest off a bag using iron sights that measured under an inch. It would take an exceptional third party barrel to beat that and like you've said WHY, with that type of accuracy, would you want to buy a barrel?
     
  14. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    First off, the original owner is a good friend, and a great shooter, so "klutz" probably does not apply here...

    He has never liked this gun, he was honest. In fact, when we first talked about the possibility of me buying it, he said "he wouldn't sell this to his best friend or his mother" because he hated it so much. (I talked him into letting me shoot it.) He prefers his S&W Victory models (and he has another S&W .22 that I can't remember, and no, it is not a model 41!). His other .22 pistols all have longer barrels, so maybe he was hoping a new barrel would fix the gun, who knows?

    Before I decide it is the gun and not me however, I do want to shoot it from a rest.

    I kinda think I am leaning towards @beag_nut 's suggestion of just saying "screw it" and getting the Mark IV that I wanted to begin with...
     
  15. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    James

    I think this is probably your best course of action. If the Mk.III had been a tack driver with your first range visit (and it clearly wasn't), we wouldn't be having this conversation. For whatever reason this gun sounds like it could easily turn into a "work in progress", trying to get even some sort of decent accuracy out of it. Thank your friend for his offer and get the Mk.IV that you really want instead.
     
  16. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    Sadly, this is indeed the direction I am leaning towards. $200 is a small extra price to pay in the long run to get the gun I really want, and to avoid hassles in the future.

    Thanks to everyone for their replies and insight.
     
  17. murf

    murf Member

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    six inches @ fifteen yards is unacceptable for a ruger mk pistol. i'd look elsewhere. spend the extra two hundred and get what you want, imo.

    luck,

    murf
     
  18. oldrevolverguy

    oldrevolverguy Member

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    Keep in mind that 22s are notorious for being picky about which ammunition it shoots best. My MKIII Target shoots CCI Mini Mag into groups 50% smaller at 50 yards than any other 22 ammo I have tried. I strongly suggest that whatever 22 you decide to purchase, buy a box of every different brand, load and bullet type you can get your hands on and do a round robin style shoot off. I mounted a scope on my MKIII, used a solid bench rest and sandbags at an indoor 50 yard range to eliminate as many variables as possible. It was the best time and money I have spent to break in, gain familiarity and train with a new firearm. YMMV.
     
  19. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    I shot it again today, and it was much better. It was at an outdoor range which has much better lighting.

    I was actually meeting a local smith who had done some work on USPSA Limited gun, so I did not want to spend much time with the Ruger, but before we got started with my USPSA gun, I asked him to shoot a mag's worth and tell me what he thought (he is a crack shot).

    All high right.

    We went to adjust the rear sight and the adjustment screw was totally loosey-goosey, no clicks to the screw turns. So we sort of guessed at the windage adjustment, and he was eventually able to get a pretty solid group at 20 yards. I tried it next, and although it was not as nice has his grouping, it wasn't bad compared to my first outing. The rear sight is not tight at all however, and also jiggles a bit when you grab it. I am wondering if this has been part of the issue with this gun from the get-go?

    He shot 2 mags, and I shot one. Not enough to tell anything for sure, but encouraging enough that it makes me want to take it to my range and really see what I can get out it.

    The saga continues...
     
  20. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    James

    The loose rear sight would certainly be a problem with getting consistent accuracy out of the gun. So the questions are: can the rear sight be fixed, is the trigger decent or does it need to be replaced, and is this gun potentially worth the trouble of getting it up and running (and still not cost more than a new Mk.IV).

    The story continues...
     
  21. Charliefrank

    Charliefrank Member

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    I just purchased a mklll target model used. Came with the case,extra mag, weaver scope base. Gave $325 for it. Great target sights descent trigger and plenty accurate. I love it.
     
  22. darkcloud

    darkcloud Member

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    Had a MK3 22/45 Target with 4" barrel. Bought it new. I really liked it. In fact I liked it so much when I was in my gunsmiths shot he had a MK3 Target with the 5.5" barrel used with box and all the works it came with. I asked him what was wrong with it and he said nothing. He got it on trade froom another customer who changed pistols like underwear. $250 and it came home with me. I liked it SOOOOO much that I sold my 22/45 because it never got shot anymore. I absolutely love this pistol and it is the second most accurate pistol I have shot with standard and HV ammo. The most accurate was a S&W 22A but the Ruger is much more solidly built and will be around LONG after I am dead and gone. One day I will get some high quality target ammo and see what it will do with my meager handgun skills. This is one of these guns I more than like. It is a "keeper" gun. BTW I painted the front ramp bright orange with fingernail polish and it really helped. If you have a loose sight I would suggest getting a new one or getting an after market sight for it.
     
  23. highlander 5

    highlander 5 Member

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    Check the screw that holds the front and rear sights,this has been my experience with the MK II,III and IV pistols. For what ever reason Ruger doesn't believe in Loctite.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
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  24. Doublehelix
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    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    This is the key right here!!! The trigger is "OK", but I had planned on getting the Volquartsen trigger kit for either the Mk III or the Mk IV, so that is a wash.

    I MUCH prefer the grips on the Mk IV Competition, so if I keep the Mk III, that means new grips. I am also thinking the rear sight is trashed on the Mk III, so I would need to replace that.

    Finally, I think I am paying a premium for this gun due to the TS barrel, and then also probably paying a bit extra for the original Ruger barrel which I will most likely never use.

    And then there is a "cost" to not having the one-button take down like with the MK IV, and the longer, more accurate barrel that comes with the Mk IV Competition.

    Dang. Lots to think about...
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
  25. murf

    murf Member

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    another vote for checking the front sight screw. mine kept backing out until i got fed up with it and blue loctited it in. also check the rear sight pivot pin. mine had a bad habit of sliding out and freeing up one side of the pivot joint. that front sight pin may be gone all together.

    luck,

    murf
     
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