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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; Talking to another old gun dude today and he asked me a simple question - "have you put any commercial ammo through it?" Well....no I ...


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Old January 10th, 2017, 04:22 PM   #46
 
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Talking to another old gun dude today and he asked me a simple question - "have you put any commercial ammo through it?"
Well....no I haven't.
He relayed a story about my FIL who was having trouble getting a Kimber Montana to group. He was there at one time with him and he happen d to have some Remington something or other in the same caliber in his truck so he loaded it up and it clover leafed the next three rounds. FIL said "oh....I guess I got it too hot...."

No 7-08 at Wallyworld so I got the Hornady book down and loaded up 5 rounds of Hornady BTSP Interloc 140's over I4064 from right in the middle of the chart. 38.5g I believe. I torqued the main screw - it was a little loose. Didn't seem that way with a screwdriver but a 30" torque wrench gives a little more....torque. Clicked it at 8'#, a little over 96" probably. Took it out and first shot the spec COL loads I loaded last night with CFE223. Terrible. All over the place. This after the serious cleaning, torquing, etc.
I let it cool down completely then fired the new lower power rounds in fairly quick succession - 1-2 mins apart. Results are very promising. If I take out one flyer, that's maybe 2" from the center of the group, the other four are all within 1". That one could have been me or a bad powder throw. I left the bench hopeful and loaded ten more just like that and will shoot them over the next day or so. If I get some consistency then I'll clock them and decide if I can live with it or not. Book says 2400. I expect the 20" barrel to get slightly less than that. That may be the best this stick can do.
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Old January 10th, 2017, 05:57 PM   #47
 
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I think you are wishing. It's already produced a 6 shot 1" group ONE time according to your first post and you have also tried a BUNCH of loads according to that and other posts as well. Based on what I have seen you post, I would personally have ZERO confidence in that rifle until it printed some consistent groups on a consistent basis. That flyer is not the result of a powder throw. It's either just a flyer or a BAD pull. I ever pull one that bad, I know it the second I squeeze it. You say "could" have been me. You would KNOW it
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Old January 10th, 2017, 07:20 PM   #48
 
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One of the things that drove me nuts about my 77s that didn't shoot well is the fliers they would produce. For a hunting gun you can't afford your cold bore shot to be a flier.


I hope Ruger can fix it for you, but be warned that "within spec" can mean three shots in a 6" circle for some manufacturers.
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Old January 10th, 2017, 10:34 PM   #49
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cknpro View Post
Talking to another old gun dude today and he asked me a simple question - "have you put any commercial ammo through it?"
Well....no I haven't.
He relayed a story about my FIL who was having trouble getting a Kimber Montana to group. He was there at one time with him and he happen d to have some Remington something or other in the same caliber in his truck so he loaded it up and it clover leafed the next three rounds. FIL said "oh....I guess I got it too hot...."

No 7-08 at Wallyworld so I got the Hornady book down and loaded up 5 rounds of Hornady BTSP Interloc 140's over I4064 from right in the middle of the chart. 38.5g I believe. I torqued the main screw - it was a little loose. Didn't seem that way with a screwdriver but a 30" torque wrench gives a little more....torque. Clicked it at 8'#, a little over 96" probably. Took it out and first shot the spec COL loads I loaded last night with CFE223. Terrible. All over the place. This after the serious cleaning, torquing, etc.
I let it cool down completely then fired the new lower power rounds in fairly quick succession - 1-2 mins apart. Results are very promising. If I take out one flyer, that's maybe 2" from the center of the group, the other four are all within 1". That one could have been me or a bad powder throw. I left the bench hopeful and loaded ten more just like that and will shoot them over the next day or so. If I get some consistency then I'll clock them and decide if I can live with it or not. Book says 2400. I expect the 20" barrel to get slightly less than that. That may be the best this stick can do.
Like I said earlier about my 7mm08 Remington Model Seven, load development for the 7mm08 was pretty easy. Back in those days (1988), H414/Win760 was the main powder for it, along with 139-145 gr bullets and Rem cases. Hodgdon's book had 48.0 gr of H414 as max, with a 140 gr bullet. I worked up to max, saw some flatter primers, then worked down a grain or two. My Rem's 18 1/2" 'soda straw' tapered barrel has always delivered 1 MOA consistancy on the first three rounds. Some of my best 100 yd groups of under an inch have been with Nosler 140 gr BT bullets and 46 gr of H414. My chrono says just under 2700 fps for that load. My rifle has only seen 30-40 factory loads through it at the beginning, with all the rest being handloads.

If you're getting poor accuracy fron the 7mm08, I would say the gun is to blame.
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Old January 12th, 2017, 02:33 PM   #50
 
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I have a Ruger M77 MKII in 7 mm Rem Mag. I have owned it since new and like you, had problems getting it to shoot consistently. I started with a Rifle Basix Trigger, which helped some, but still had problems grouping. I ended up having the barrel tolerances matched, (I believe the company that did mine called it Uni-Boring) added a custom muzzle brake, and a crown job and it made all the difference in the world. Yeah, it cost me a few bucks, but the gun shot phenomenal afterward. If I remember, they even added a better recoil pad.

Just my $0.02
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Old January 12th, 2017, 02:48 PM   #51
 
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I was finally able to get my post count up enough to post pics of the work done:





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Old January 12th, 2017, 04:12 PM   #52
 
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Nice looking stick Cobra! I wish mine had the Zytel stock. My 30-06 does. Had a .308 that did but traded it for the 06.

Rifle is on the truck to Ruger as I write. They requested a detailed written history...and I delivered, along with targets and load data. We shall see....

(Needless to say my foray with factory ammo was abysmal.)

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Old January 15th, 2017, 05:32 PM   #53
 
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I don't know if this did or could make that much difference, but I just pulled a load of 7-08 brass out of the tumbler (that I'd been shooting the last few weeks) and I thought I'd check case length and all but a few were several hundredths longer than recommended maximum case length of 2.035" I was getting a lot at 2.04+ to 2.06+ on a few. A few wer in the 2.035-8" range, but all were longer than max. I know for a fact that I was shooting these while over-spec. They had all chambered fine. I checked a couple of factory rounds and they were in the 2.027-2.030 range.

Like I said, I don't know that this was the reason for all my accuracy trouble - as I got about a 4.5" group with factory shells - but I wonder how much it could have contributed? I don't think I was getting any pinch as they did chamber fine and I could see no evidence on the brass. ??? At any rate, I reckon I'll trim them all to 2.025" and wait to hear from Ruger.
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Old January 16th, 2017, 08:02 AM   #54
 
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So from factory cases at 2.030 and your longest at 2.060. That's only 30 thousandths. Not ideal, but not the issue either. Rugers have notoriously loose chambers, plus you said you throated yours a little. If it chambers.........well, it chambers
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Old January 16th, 2017, 10:04 AM   #55
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msp3903 View Post
So from factory cases at 2.030 and your longest at 2.060. That's only 30 thousandths. Not ideal, but not the issue either. Rugers have notoriously loose chambers, plus you said you throated yours a little. If it chambers.........well, it chambers
That was my initial thought as well. They all were in spec at shoulder length. Probably has nothing to do with it.

Side question - at what point do you decide to trim your brass - at absolute max length by the book or do you fudge a couple thousanths?
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Old January 16th, 2017, 12:20 PM   #56
 
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Well that depends on the chamber and what I am doing. I am mostly a target shooter, so case prep is likely the MOST important part of the equation. I trim to a set length, neck ream and neck turn if needed, because I am looking for consistent neck tension from round to round. On a hunting round, if it chambers, I really don't think it makes much difference, although I would pick a length and be consistent with it, because I am anal.............LOL!!! But in reality, if it chambers without heavy bolt pressure to do so, it's not too long
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Old January 25th, 2017, 11:22 AM   #57
 
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Rifle is on it's way back from Ruger. Here's what they said they did:

replaced magazine box (I had filed on the other one a little)
removed the stock shim (I had put a 1/32" shim in to float the forend)
replaced stock bolts
polished chamber
cleaned bore
repaired crown
repaired bolt - Not sure what that means as they wouldn't tell me much else. I would think they would have just replaced it with a tighter fitting one.

Said they test fired it and are including the test targets with the rifle.

All of this from the girl reading the file, I did not get to talk to the technician who did the work.

When it gets here I'll fire it and see. Any flyer in a 5 round slow fire set and she's down the road. Without barrel replacement, I have my doubts.
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Old January 25th, 2017, 11:27 AM   #58
 
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I'm hoping they sorted out the issues and you are happy with the results.

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Old January 30th, 2017, 06:25 PM   #59
 
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Got it back. The Ruger factory targets looked good. I could not see what they really did anything. The crown looked the same, the bolt looked the same - maybe it was a little tighter..maybe. So I took it out to shoot with three of the best previous loads plus factory Remington stuff. Nothing less than 4 inches at 100 yards. I was ready to get shed of it. But I was also going on a hunt that weekend with two fellas whom are gun gurus - one a master smith of national if not worldwide fame. So I took the targets and the gun with me for his opinion. Basically he said if I really loved the gun, I'd have to re-barrel it and put a new stock on it.
I don't love it that much - it's down the road.

Interesting story he told me - and apparently it has happened more than once. He had a friend who wanted a Ruger rifle, so he went and took 6 off the shelf of the shop, took several pet loads and could not find one load in any rifle that was 1MOA off the shelf. He admitted that long ago, when they bought a named barrel that I can't remember now, that they were good. Then they started buying some crap barrels for a while - that were really crap. They went from that to building their own and now it's hit or miss. Some of you here have shared much the same hit or miss experience. Looks like this one missed.

So now I am in the market for another rifle. I'm primarily looking at Win 70 Classic Featherlight or Remington 700 Mountain. Since season is basically over here, I'm not in a big hurry.
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Old January 30th, 2017, 07:42 PM   #60
 
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Between the Winchester and the Remington I would pick the Winchester. This is coming from a long time Remington shooter. Tikka might be another to look at.

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