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Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?

22 Feb 2017
@ 08:31 pm (GMT)

Benn Harvey-Walker

Hi All,

Haven't been around for a while ... work has been getting in the way of ... well ... everything :-/

A friend & gun shop owner has a Ruger M77 MkII (left hand) in 30-06 on consignment that the owner is keen to sell.

This is exactly the configuration I'm after, but I don't have any experience with Rugers, much less the M77.

Barrel looks fine and the engineering is nice, but I seem to recall reading the action is a bit of a pig to bed?

Would appreciate general thoughts on out-of-the-box accuracy of these rifles. I really don't want to spend the next 12 months chasing decent accuracy if I can avoid it.

I'm looking for something I can be reasonably confident I can get under 0.5MOA without having to re-barrel it. (Of course I understand that no two rifles are the same, so there are no guarantees.)

Thanks for your thoughts.




26 Feb 2017
@ 06:25 am (GMT)

Bryan Webster

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Years ago I bought a Ruger 77 in 7mm Remington Magnum.
That is and was my only experience with them. Out of the box
with good hand loads it would approsch 1.5 inch groups at 100

You are correct abou them being a bit different to bed, and back then
I had not done one of them. After struggling with it I got it bedded-
full action and a small but of the barrel knox area. I drilled out the
action screw area for the rear tang and rigged a pillar to bed the front
screw as well.

After a week or so of all this I got it to the rifle range and it shot 5
shot groups into 3/4 to 1 inch but seemed to favour lighter bullets
and not the heavier Nosler Partitions that i wanted to use for moose
and elk. I tried relieving the bedding a tiny bit along the sidewalls of
the action as I had done for my Model 70 Winchester but that did not
appear to induce enough accuracy for longer range shots either.

Never kept it because of that. All this being said, Nathan Foster had not
been writing his books back then, and he does cover the Ruger bedding in
the Accurizing book, something that could have helped me a lot. If you do not yet have that book try reading it before you buy that rifle. To me however, there are a few new rifles out in the market like the Remington 783 and Winchester XTR that shoot under 1 MOA and can be had in the USA for $400 or less. A freind of mine has two of the 783 rifles epoxy bedded that shoot sub 1/2 moa but not with his original barrel - he put a Shilen Prefit barrel in both of those, and they both sit in Boyds laminated stocks with Sight SIII 6-24 scopes mounted. He uses both for practice for his FTR competitions as well as shooting PRS competitions as well, which is the reason for restocking them.
26 Feb 2017
@ 06:28 am (GMT)

Bryan Webster

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
excuse my spelling/grammar checker!
26 Feb 2017
@ 10:04 am (GMT)

Benn Harvey-Walker

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Thanks Bryan,

Appreciate your input. I've read elsewhere the 77 isn't overly accurate, but wanted to check in with a group of educated shooters before jumping to conclusions.

As it happens, my friend took the rifle to our local range yesterday to test fire it.

It shot just on 1.5MOA, but it's worth noting:

The shooter was working off a front rest, but no rear bag;
The action isn't bedded;
The rifle is fitted with a budget. Tasco 3-9x scope;
It was a blustery day; and
The shooter was using hand loads made up for the rifle, but of unknown quality.

On balance, given I can get the rifle for Aud$650 including 150 cases and dies, the trigger is extremely good and the action is smooth, I think I'll give it a go.

Worst case even if I can't get it to shoot sub0.5, I get to spend time getting to know the 30-06 caliber and I can always sell the rifle and keep the brass and dies ... Won't leave me much out of pocket :-)


27 Feb 2017
@ 08:32 pm (GMT)

mark whiteley

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Hi Benn
I own 2 rugers and rate them highly enough to want to rebarrel them when needed, one is still in now being done soon I hope
I have heard from some range experts that they are just a farm gun,
the easy way to shut these type's down is to show them what a farm gun can do LOL, one guy, a range officer "expert" at SSAA little river who watched me doing a test on my 22-250 smirked and said the groups were pretty average,
I did try and explain that it was a test on a combination of projectile and powder that just was never going to work for that rifle even though all the test groups were under moa, he just gave me the 100 yard stare like no one was home, the next week I got him to spot me for that rifle with a proven load, he watched as I put 5 shots into 1 hole at 100m,
shut him down and didn't see him for the rest of the day,
IMO rugers are not a pig to bed just a little different and they do come to life with a good bedding job
no different to "any" other make, bedding, trigger, optics, solid shooting rest, Nathans books and you will have the best shooting farm gun in your area
don't listen to the experts, read Nathans books

regards Mark
ps I love farm guns
28 Feb 2017
@ 09:25 am (GMT)

Benn Harvey-Walker

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Hi Mark,

And thanks for your thoughts and experience.

I've decided to go ahead and buy the rifle, so I guess I'll be finding out for myself soon enough how well it can shoot :-)

I have read Nathan's books and recall the Ruger M77 is a bit tricky to bed due to angle forward action screw ... I'd re-read it except I've loaned the book to my son who is stationed in Mt Isa, so I'll have to wait til he comes back down to visit in a couple of months.

Having seen the rifle shoot, I'm confident I can get it to shoot better ... I've accurized a few rifles to date ... Howa, Tikka, CZ and Zastava, so I'm practised at bedding and know what a difference it can make.

Keen to start a new project ... All my other rifles are set up, so I need something to play with :D


01 Mar 2017
@ 08:46 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Hi Benn, the Ruger M77 can be highly rewarding. I have in the past very much enjoyed taking a regular 2.5 MOA grouper and tricking it up.

There was a period of time when the barrels were of very poor quality (as I described in the rifles book) but even these can be interesting to work with.

Just follow the steps in the books and see how you go. And do make sure you remove any burrs on the underside of the action so as to avoid any deep cuts on your hands. Do not be afraid to do the work. Its a real shame to see a Ruger used as-is when they are capable of so much more.

From what you have described, this should be a very nice rifle once you are up and running. The mag length is perfect for the .30-06. This is a really good platform.
02 Mar 2017
@ 08:27 pm (GMT)

Benn Harvey-Walker

Re: Ruger M77 MkII in 30-06 - opinions?
Hi Nathan,

And thank you for commenting.

Every rifle is different I know, but it's reassuring to know I'm not necessarily going to be pushing s**t uphill with a rake :-)

I think I enjoy the challenge of accurizing a rifle as much as I do hunting, so I'm looking forward to getting the project underway.




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