A Nurse with a Gun

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Ruger 10/22

I'm a big fan of the Ruger 10/22. I'm an even bigger fan of getting a sub-hundred dollar gun at a pawn shop, and turning it into a tackdriver. The Ruger 10/22 has been around for over four decades. It is a staple of a child's progression to becoming a rifleman, and it is only surpassed by the 1911 as the most customized firearm of all time. The Ruger 10/22 rifle has a near cult-like following of people who invest more in accessories than the rifle retails for, all in pursuit of one hole groups at fifty yards.

At last count, I had nine 10/22s in my home. These range from an all out tackdriving fantasy rifle to an ancient "super stock" 10/22 with an aluminum buttplate, a "no warning" blue tapered barrel and a walnut carbine stock. The only modifications to the "super stock" is a set back match chamber, a bedded action, trigger work, and a recessed target crown on the floated original barrel. Among those nine rimfire rifles residing in my home are a purple metalflake carbine with a youth stock for my daughter, an adjustable stock target rifle for my wife, Turtle guna "Wally World Special", and the first rifle my son ever built, a Hogue overmolded stocked 10/22 he used to take squirrels.

My "Turtle Gun" was so named after an afternoon of executing turtles in a pond about 75 yards from the back porch. Modifications include a Barracuda stock, Magnum Research carbon fiber barrel and Volquartsen hammer, sear, and magazine release. The rest of the action was polished, an auto bolt release was installed along with a bolt buffer, and the firing pin was pinned. The trigger group is bedded. The Turtle Gun's glass is a Nikon Monarch 6.5-20X44 scope mounted on Weaver 4X4 rings. This rifle was bought as a $100 pawn shop stainless carbine. All that remains of the original firearm is the bolt and the receiver.

The genius in the Ruger 10/22 is it's modularity. The barrel is held in place by a wedge block retained by two Allen screws. The trigger group is secured to the receiver by two cross pins. The stock is attached with a single screw. As an out of the box .22 rifle, the Ruger 10/22 is admittedly not as accurate as others in it's class, such as the Marlin 60 and the CZ bolt action target rifles, but it has a distinct advantage. It is reliable, durable, and incredibly "handy". It is accurate enough. When the owner becomes bored with the firearm, or when cabin fever drives him to madness, he can open a Midway catalog and order enough goodies to totally transform the little plinker into a precision rifle that will keep ten rounds on a Xeroxed quarter at 75 yards.

This 10/22 rifle started life as a $109 Deluxe 10/22 I found in a pawn shop. Silhouette RugerThe stock is a Fajen Silhouette in orange, green and teal. The barrel is a 20" Whistle Pig matte aluminum, free floated in the stock. The trigger group is bedded. The action has been polished with an auto bolt release, Volquartsen magazine release, and bolt buffer. The bolt has been chamfered and the firing pin pinned. The rifle is scoped with a Nikon 4X32 Prostaff secured by Weaver 4X4 rings.

Many adult shooters grew up with the Ruger 10/22. Those who have shot them compulsively invariably begin to modify them. I thought I had done all there was to do with a Ruger 10/22. Then, I read that Ruger may have finally produced what many 10/22 shooters had always dreamed of.......A 10/22 pistol. I just might have to wander back into a gun store.......

If the gunnie in your life still needs something for Christmas, buy them a Ruger 10/22. Then order a Midway and Brownells catalog to find Christmas presents in the years to come. It's guaranteed to put a smile on their face.

More info:
Ruger 10/22: From Factory To Fantasy
Rimfire Central
Joe's Trigger Group Modifications
Ruger's Serial Number Database

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Blogger dropdownstairs said...

A friend's daughter shots 22 target
is this a good setup for competition?

What do you think of clarks bull barell? 1 inch x 100 yds


7:00 AM  
Anonymous ben at spiffmo.com said...

I bought a 10/22 at Walmart some years back. It is stainless and has a laminated Mannlicher-type stock. Never been fired - just bought it because I thought it had a nice look.

8:20 AM  
Blogger kbarrett said...

A .22lr pistol and rifle fall into the household appliance category.

Every household should have them. right up there with a fire extinguisher and a decent first aid kit.

1:05 PM  
Blogger Yuri Orlov said...

I got my 10/22 at wally world a couple of years ago. Since then I've added a Fajen thumbhole stock, Adams & Bennett bull barrel, the complete Volquartsen trigger group and recoil buffer, extended magazine release, Rock Mount bipod and a nice Busnell 3-9 power scope. So far I figure I've got close to $700 into this rifle, including the original cost of the rifle. The only things still stock on the rifle are the bolt, receiver and the trigger group housing. It too can put 10 rounds into a hole the size of a quarter at 50 yards. At 100 yards it can consistently group at 2" or less. It's more accurate than I am at this point.

Here it is without the bipod attached.


2:33 PM  
Blogger Last Chance Safari Company said...

don't look now, but ruger is about to unveil a handgun based on the 1022 action. this should be as marvelous plinker as the many rifle versions, especially at a time when the price of centerfire ammunition is skyrocketing check it out here http://www.gunblast.com/Ruger-22Charger.htm

10:20 PM  
Blogger Carl the Bold said...

That 10/22 pistol just went way up near the top of my wish list.

11:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the 10/22 is an admirable weapon, but i'm sorry to say, that tri-colored fajen stock of yours is a prime candidate for ugly gun sunday.

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Timmeeee said...


3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

An affordable, reliable .22LR pistol which accepts magazines of a greater capacity than ten measily rounds??

Sign me up!!

7:08 AM  
Blogger trainer said...

I was customizing mine to a fair-thee-well until I found an 'international' full length stock. Instantly the thing was so pretty I didn't want to get it dirty.

Fortunately I had enough parts left over that with the purchase of a couple receivers, I built more.

1:01 PM  
Anonymous armed liberal said...

On recomendation from all the great things said I bought a 10/22 stainless today. I've been a handgunner for a long time but want to get in to longer range and will be building an AR-15 soon but wanted to pratice cheap for awhile. My Buckmark is still one of my favorite handguns and I thinl I'll like this Ruger almost as much. I just need a good sling and swivels and then either a good peep sight or some glass.

9:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

shooring a custom 22`s kinda cool... Shooting turtles is moronic....

9:03 AM  
Blogger Xavier said...

"shooring a custom 22`s kinda cool... Shooting turtles is moronic...."

Not if they are eating all the fish you stocked your pond with.

3:45 PM  
Blogger mindlab prime said...


You mention bedding the trigger group and pinning the firing pin. Can you elaborate a bit?

I'm always looking for a new trick for my 10/22T. Right now it's good for 10/10 shots on a golf ball at 100 yards. . . if the wind is still and I'm awake.

11:07 AM  
Blogger Xavier said...

Bedding the trigger group can be done with Accu-glass from Brownells. It simply makes the trigger group more tightly fitted into the stock and to the reciever.

The firing pin can be pinned with either a cross pin,or a piece of shot. A crosspin requires accurate drilling of the bolt, and a jig. Thus, a lot of people prefer the piece of shot in the firing pin groove. The benefit is elimination or decrease in number of first round flyers.

9:09 PM  
Anonymous Ruger 10/22 Info said...

I spent all day looking for 10/22s in the pawn shops but no luck. I loved your article and enjoy doing the same thing.

8:14 PM  

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