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I finally shot my new Ruger M77 Mark II in .257 Roberts today, and loved it. Great balance, and I really loved the controlled round feed and big claw extractors. Very, very solid rifle. I mounted a Sightron 3X9 on it, and accuracy was about 1.5 groups at 100 (this is with no load development, shooting 90 grain Sierra hollowpoints and 38 gr. of Varget). I have several Rem 700, all varmint rifles with synthetic stocks, and I have to say, out of the box I perfer the Ruger. To my suprise the stock trigger was fine for me - it broke very clean and crisp. It has a wood stock, and I might just be a converted synthetic man. What a huge difference in looks and feel. --Mykal
Sounds like you got a winner Mykal. I used to have a Ruger M77 in 257 Roberts about 16 years ago; it was the tang safety model. In a fit of idiocy, I sold it. So, learn from my mistake and hang onto yours! Should be able to get a good load or two tuned in for it.
Shawn: I"ll be keeping this one. In fact, I"ve been so impressed with my Rugers (I also have a Ruger 77/17 Target Grey Model in .17 HMR) that I plan to get another 77/22 in .22 Hornet. I spent some time dry-fire practicing in the back yard today in different shooting positions. I have to say the trigger is much better than I thought it might be. I had nearly taken it for granted that I would get an after market Reflix (sp) trigger for it, but I don"t see the need. It is just a rifle that feels great in the hand. --Mykal
Guess i"m the grey dog here. If I shot a new rifle in a .257 Roberts and only got 1.5 grouping with 5 shots at 100 yds. I"d be concerned. I wouldn"t do another thing until I had the barrelled action free floated, pillar posted and glass bedded. Then I"d look at the reloading manuals and start with a medium load that proved most accurate in the test guns, probably from Lymans manual. Fire form, neck size, reload and fire again. If I wasn"t down to less than 1" at 100 yds I"d be discussing the results with my gunsmith and having him check the rifle over.
Tamid: To each his own. I"m happy with 1.5, expecially considering I haven"t even begun to develop a good load yet. Good shooting! --Mykal
That ain"t bad with anybody"s out of the box production rifle. I"m guessing with a little load development and break in it will go under 1 moa easy.Try some IMR 4895 if you have it.I don"t know about the pillar bedding and all that but I would probably have the barrel free floating before dark.
Float the barrel yes. Bed it if you can. Ruger 77"s are very hard to bed correctly. Its that stupid front action screw that throws everything off when trying to bed it.No need for both pillers and bedding. Just one or the other will do. 1.5 inches at 100 yards with hand loads is a bit much for me too. Maybe just tweak the load, float the barrel and let it go. I think the Rugers shoot better without bedding. Floating that barrel might just get you under an inch without touching the load. I would try that first.
Mykal,Can"t seem to remember who said it first but, "the only interesting rifle is an accurate rifle". Guess accuracy is each to his own to determine.
Tamid: your quote (only accurate rifles are interesting) comes from Townsend Whelen. In Whelen"s own writings, 1.5 at 100 easily falls within his definition of accurate for a hunting rifle chambered in .257 Roberts. As you say, each to his own with regards to a definition of accurate. --Mykal
OK - to put a cap on this:A new rifle shooting 1.5 MOA out of the box with factory ammo is completely acceptable. Tweaked handloads to find the sweet spot for the particular firearm will certainly reduce this even more. Also, as the barrel laps, accuracy will improve.As far as hunting purposes, 1.5 MOA is acceptable, even to 300 yds.
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We all see the posts by people saying that they shoot under half inch groups at 100 yards all day with every rifle they own. Being the realist that I am and a believer in human nature 1 1/2 inch out of a new rifle at 100 yards with what are handloads not even claimed to be tuned to the rifle? I"d be happy too! It tells me that this rifle is at least accurate enough to hunt deer or black bear sized animals out to 300 yards No Problem! This is a great place to start. To tighten things up I"d try neck sized brass. Then differnt powders and charge weights and different bullets. I wouldn"t even think of dinking with the rifle unless I could not find a tighter grouping handload. If it ain"t broke, why fix it? Not chewing on anyone here but heck, sounds like you have a winner! I hope when I finally find a .257 Roberts of my own it shoots as well right from the start.