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M77 7-08 giving me fits!

This is a discussion on M77 7-08 giving me fits! within the Ruger Bolt Action forums, part of the Rifle & Shotgun Forum category; I would do two things prior to getting rid of the gun. First would be to use a good copper cleaner to remove all traces ...


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Old January 4th, 2017, 08:57 PM   #16
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I would do two things prior to getting rid of the gun. First would be to use a good copper cleaner to remove all traces of copper fouling. May require a lot of time until your patches come out with no bluish color that indicates there is still copper fouling.
After completing, put another scope on the rifle before testing. I do not care that your scope is a Leupold, I have seen the cross hairs shot loose on them in the past.
Test fire with the best prior load you had. If it shoots great, replace the Leupold scope and shoot again to determine if it was scope or copper buildup. If that fails to get good groups, odds are very very high you got a crap barrel.
Now you know the reason why I am very reluctant to buy a used rifle due to persons getting rid of a terrible shooter and not telling you about it. I do not mind buying a rifle that shoots poorly if told about it and it is sold at a price that is reasonable. I have re-barreled many rifles with Shilen match barrels and glass bedded the action and ended up with very accurate rifles. Pity the poor guy who is not set up to do that and ends up buying a rifle with a bad barrel and paid good money for it.



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Old January 4th, 2017, 09:11 PM   #17
 
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Originally Posted by cknpro View Post
I relieved a BUNCH of magazine pressure this morning tightened it all back down tight and left the mag slightly loose. I will give it a good cleaning as well. Thinking back, the best group I got was after I cleaned it, but since then there hasn't been 10 rounds through it before I got the last 7"er....so I'm not sure about that. But cleaning doesn't cost anything so... I'll probably re-check COL as well. Best I remember we backed off the lands about 0.0025". Might could go a little closer but I think I'm already close to mag restriction. I'll shoot it again and let you know.
Don't know that I want to go to the trouble of bedding it. With the basically hollowed out fore-stock as it in now, I'd have to use a whole can of glass to fill it....probably add 2# to the rifle. It's basically free floating now. We did try to shim it and put pressure at various points along the barrel before to no marked results. I'm hoping for an easier solution...

In the meantime, I've been strongly considering a Winchester 70 Ultimate Shadow SS in same caliber. I really want to stay with SS as this is likely going to go to my son or at least be his primary loaner. Anybody have any experience with those? I've got an old pre-64 M70 in .270 and it is suuwwweeeett! This new one has a pre-64 action I understand.
I would suggest a Remington or a Savage
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Old January 6th, 2017, 03:57 PM   #18
 
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I would suggest a Remington or a Savage
interesting - why those over Win? I've looked into Remington a little. I don't know the difference in all those higher end models 700, 7, BDL, CDL....etc. I know they are all push feed and I was raised better than that

I really have never owned a push feed but my FIL who is my gun mentor is crusty old Mauser re-builder so.... And it makes good sense to me though I understand it has little to nothing to do with final accuracy. I also know Remington has been the military's basic sniper platform for years and actually know a couple of guys that have put them to effective usage in that way. It may be time to try one.

UPDATE: I cleaned the barrel with a copper foaming solvent. Never got any sign of copper fouling out of the barrel. It was supposed to be a color indicating product but it never indicated anything. I relieved magazine pressure, loaded another bullet not yet tried - Hornady BTSP 140 - and went out this afternoon and shot 17 rounds, 5 each of two older loadings and 7 of the new. I thought I was about to be real happy when the first two new loads were almost the same hole. But then #3 was 4" high, #4 was touching #3, # #5 was in between those, #6&7 were 3"+ outside all of those. No better results with the old loads - put a couple close, then fly a couple...etc. The original 160 Barnes loads I first worked up I thought were going to be ok. Three of those were within 2", but then the next two were out of the ballpark. I could live with 2" consistently, if I could only get there. I don't think it is the scope because when I put the thing up before trying the partitions, I had gotten a 1" group of 6 as stated before, but now the same loads won't get anywhere close to that nor will anything else.
Even so, I took the scope off and put another on it. I'll bore sight it tmr and see what it will do with the 140 Sierra's. If no good, I'm done. Looking back, I've run no less than 60 rounds down the pipe in the last couple weeks. So overall this gun has had well over 100 rounds down range. If it was going to settle, it should have by now.

I also say a NIB Hawkeye SS for sale. I wonder if I should even consider it. Are all Ruger SS prone to such inconsistency or is SS more subject to bad barrels?

ETA: Also tomorrow I plan to be very deliberate in letting the barrel cool. No more than two rounds back-to-back. It's gonna be cold here tomorrow so cooling should not be a problem.

Last edited by cknpro; January 6th, 2017 at 04:51 PM.
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Old January 6th, 2017, 04:33 PM   #19
 
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If your smith is an older guy, he is probably all about pre 64 Winchesters and extolls the virtue of controlled round feed and sako style extractors. It's really a big adoo about nothing. The only advantage to controlled feed in my opinion is that once it strips the case from the magazine, that you could chamber that round even if the rifle was upside down. Not a situation I will likely ever find myself in, so to me that doesn't matter. What does matter is that I generally shoot for accuracy and single load. Some controlled feed rifles can't be single loaded. The extractor won't snap over the case. Also, controlled feed rifles can't be short stroked and they also required 90* bolt lift. So what does that mean? It means that if you care about speed, push feeds are faster as they only require 60* bolt lift.

As noted Remingtons have always been push feed and plenty of hunters do just fine with them.

As to why I prefer Remington or Savage, it's because they ARE push feed, extremely accurate and both are USA made.........Winchesters no longer are

Your barrel is crap.........LOL!!!
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Old January 6th, 2017, 04:44 PM   #20
 
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I will say that not all Stainless Rugers are like this. I just bought a cheap Ruger American all weather compact. Stainless steel 18" barrel in .308Win for $300.00. The darn thing will shoot 3/4" groups at 100yds with the cheapest brass cased surplus ammo I could find. It shot two 1/2" groups back to back with the Federal gold medal match ammo before the wind kicked up.
I bought this to be a beater rifle so I didn't have to worry about the nice full stocked CZ riding on the front of my ATV in the rain, sleet, and snow I was hunting in this deer season.

Maybe you should try pulling your scope off and trying a different one. On another forum there was a guy describing a similar problem rifle and finally swapped out the scope and when he did he started shooting consistent groups.

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Old January 6th, 2017, 04:57 PM   #21
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msp3903 View Post
If your smith is an older guy, he is probably all about pre 64 Winchesters and extolls the virtue of controlled round feed and sako style extractors. It's really a big adoo about nothing. The only advantage to controlled feed in my opinion is that once it strips the case from the magazine, that you could chamber that round even if the rifle was upside down. Not a situation I will likely ever find myself in, so to me that doesn't matter. What does matter is that I generally shoot for accuracy and single load. Some controlled feed rifles can't be single loaded. The extractor won't snap over the case. Also, controlled feed rifles can't be short stroked and they also required 90* bolt lift. So what does that mean? It means that if you care about speed, push feeds are faster as they only require 60* bolt lift.

As noted Remingtons have always been push feed and plenty of hunters do just fine with them.

As to why I prefer Remington or Savage, it's because they ARE push feed, extremely accurate and both are USA made.........Winchesters no longer are

Your barrel is crap.........LOL!!!
I bought a Remington recently and hat to send it in for warranty work.

If I was going to buy a new rifle now, Remington would be bottom of my list.
Tikka would get my money and probably will from here on out. My Tikka T3 7mm rem mag shoots tiny groups with pretty much everything I've fed it.
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Old January 6th, 2017, 05:21 PM   #22
 
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Rebarreling is the way to go.
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Old January 6th, 2017, 05:41 PM   #23
 
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Rebarreling is the way to go.
...IF I wanted to go to that much trouble...I don't at this point for a "user/field/rain/treestand" rifle. It's value would not increase anywhere equal to the cost of such an upgrade, no matter how accurate that might make it. Even if I sent it to Ruger and they rebarreled it for cost, I've added $150 I'd never get back out of it.

It's got one more chance tomorrow. I may try a little stock end pressure since it is a light contour barrel and many say floating those makes them worse - but I doubt anything changes. At any rate, if I can't put five rounds, with excruciating wait times between, somewhere in a 2" square tomorrow, it's going elsewhere. I have always really liked Ruger products for all the normal reasons, until this rifle. It's not soured me with Ruger on the whole, just perhaps it's time to explore other options.
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Old January 6th, 2017, 07:39 PM   #24
 
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Well, I am a non apologetic Remington guy. I likely have 30 Remington bolt guns. Why? because they simply work, they shoot and they hold their value............but mostly they shoot and do it very well. Like most other companies they DO make a cheaper rifle, but unlike some others, they still make exceptional rifles at a decent price as well. The Senderos and 40Xs still built on the tried and true 700 action. Many of mine are customs, but they are still at heart a Remington

My next choice is Savage. They likely make the most accurate rifle for the money you can buy. I also own several of them in heavy barrel configurations as well.

Now I am not saying a Winchester is a bad rifle, far from it. I own some older Model 70s as well as a couple newer Coyotes. Just wouldn't be my first choice for a NEW bolt gun

The Tikka is not a bad rifle either and is just a lower price Sako and we know the quality there.

I know this is a Ruger board and I have been taken to task before with my assessments of Ruger bolt guns. Sorry, but I am not a fan. Sturdy? yes........well built? yes.......will it shoot? maybe. Accuracy has always been hit and miss and there seems to be no rhyme or reason. You my get one that shoots very well and the next has a shotgun pattern. I have owned a bunch of them, currently own none and likely won't in the future. I think it's the hammer forged barrels, but some don't agree.

I didn't include Cooper, Kimber, Montana, Dakota and several others, because those are much more expensive rifles, but all great ones
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Old January 7th, 2017, 03:48 AM   #25
 
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What is your opinions on on a new Model 7 SS, 20"? I want to stay with a short action, lighter gun if possible. I've read some folks say they are not as accurate as a 700, other's just the opposite. I'm sure some of that has to do with individual unit variations. The 7 will have a lighter, shorter barrel, but is it stiffer - which should help its accuracy on a relatively mild 7-08? I noticed on the new Win M70 Ultimate Shadow the barrel is 20" but is not a light contour, it carries more steel to the end.

So you know if the new Rem rifles are being made in AL?
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Old January 7th, 2017, 05:21 AM   #26
 
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I would recommend that you proceed in this manner:

(1) Determine if you will keep the rifle. Be realistic, it's a hunting rifle. 2 MOA is adequate.

If you do sell it, be ethical; let the new buyer know why you are selling it! Many folks are looking for a project gun to make their own....

(2) If you keep it, start with the most simple fix(es) possible;

Cleaning
Ammo
Stock screws
Rifle rest/sandbags/conditions
Shooter
Magazine clearances
Pressure points

(3) Seek out a knowledgeable gunsmith, experienced with the Ruger 77 rifle. Alternatively, send it back to Ruger for evaluation. They may just surprise you with a fix or a new rifle.

Keep us posted.
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Old January 7th, 2017, 06:21 AM   #27
 
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All great thoughts.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptpoly View Post
(1) Determine if you will keep the rifle. Be realistic, it's a hunting rifle. 2 MOA is adequate.
Agreed, 2 is sufficient. If it weren't for the inconsistent flyers out into left field, I'd say it's about there now.

If you do sell it, be ethical; let the new buyer know why you are selling it! Many folks are looking for a project gun to make their own....
What would you suggest? "It's not as accurate as I want it to be" or "You can probably hit a horse at 100 yards with it."
If I trade or sell it, I expect to lose $150 on the deal, not a problem. I would certainly tell either the trade dealer or buyer I am unhappy with the accuracy and what I have done to attempt correction. But I will keep and continue tinkering before I give it away.


(2) If you keep it, start with the most simple fix(es) possible;

Cleaning done
Ammo done - there are endless options but I've explored no fewer than 20
Stock screws Have not put a torque wrench to it - any suggestions?
Rifle rest/sandbags/conditions Done - because I shoot the same set-up with other rifles, sometimes the same day, and get great results with them. This rifle has proven less than desirable in both hot and cold, dry and damp, breezy and still, seems to shoot "ok" today, crap tomorrow with same load
Shooter See above. I'm not a match shooter, but I'm not a rookie either. But I will agree and say the arrow often has more to do with the indian than the bow.
Magazine clearances Done
Pressure points initially chased that right off of the block, Might explore it again since some other things have been changed since.

(3) Seek out a knowledgeable gunsmith, experienced with the Ruger 77 rifle.done - not a "professional" but he does build rifles and is knowledgeable of most all Mauser type actions and their manipulation Alternatively, send it back to Ruger for evaluation. They may just surprise you with a fix or a new rifle. I might call Ruger about it and see what they say. The only physical variations I've made is a little magazine box filing and we early on ran a throat reamer a couple hundred thousandths to clear up any possible burrs or inconsistencies there. I don't know if Ruger would take the opportunity to void any warranty for that or not.
I was planning to try it with a different scope today, but so far 16 degrees F and breezy has kept me in the moderately warm house...
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Old January 7th, 2017, 08:42 AM   #28
 
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What is your opinions on on a new Model 7 SS, 20"? I want to stay with a short action, lighter gun if possible. I've read some folks say they are not as accurate as a 700, other's just the opposite. I'm sure some of that has to do with individual unit variations. The 7 will have a lighter, shorter barrel, but is it stiffer - which should help its accuracy on a relatively mild 7-08? I noticed on the new Win M70 Ultimate Shadow the barrel is 20" but is not a light contour, it carries more steel to the end.

So you know if the new Rem rifles are being made in AL?
For what you want, a model 7 would be a great choice. While some other makers lower cost line has a totally redesigned action..........for all intents and purposes, the Model 7 is just a smaller version of the 700. When I say smaller, I mean shorter, not less beefy. They both use same diameter bolt and have same barrel tenon. So whats the difference? The 7 action is about a 1/2" shorter, has less rear bridge and a larger ejection port. All this makes it lighter but still extremely strong. Nice rifles for a good price. Aftermarket is there as well

The new Huntsville plant is currently building all the AR based rifles as well as the 1911s. Other lines are supposed to be coming here though. I have been in the plant. It's state of the art

Last edited by msp3903; January 7th, 2017 at 08:49 AM.
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Old January 7th, 2017, 10:33 AM   #29
 
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Changed scopes, decided to make sure all stock pressure was relieved - as that was easier and quicker than applying some pressure, and since it is a plastic stock, I figured there could be pressure in places not normal - and there was a little. There was a tiny bit of end pressure as it was. I relieved all pressure all the way back to the action by some light sanding of the plastic and putting a 0.025" spacer under the recoil lug.

Went out and tried two sets. Placed the front rest just ahead of the magazine so no stock pressure on the barrel from a flexing plastic stock. Took me two shots to get it on paper, walked the scope up to the second POI, fired a couple check rounds and they were in the black. Changed to new target and slowly fired the sets. I waited no less than five minutes between shots. The barrel was cool to the touch at each shot. It is 25 deg so it cooled rather quickly. At first I was hopeful, but you can see from the photos it didn't last long. I thought the 160's may come back and perform, but then they went haywire as well. Barrel was cold on #5 there so I decided to fire a quick #6 and it walked 4". On both targets the center cross is POA.

It's not the scope, I don't think its the indian (me). The barrel looks clean and I've cleaned it anyway. I've not scoped it but I have put a chamber light in and it gleams all around. I could try an overnight soak, scrub, etc, as that is cheap and easy. But I doubt that's it. At best, I think it is just a two shot rifle, maybe three. After that, no telling where it might go.

My next move is to call Ruger and see what they will offer.
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Old January 7th, 2017, 10:48 AM   #30
 
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If you really detail all you have done, get the RIGHT person in customer service, they MIGHT fix it. Otherwise they will fire 3 rounds and if it's anywhere close will call it within spec and send it back
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