Ruger 10/22

The Ruger 10/22

The Ruger 10/22 is a semi-automatic rimfire rifle chambered in .22 Long Rifle. It has a removable 10-round (or 5-round) rotary magazine which allows the magazine to fit flush with the bottom of the stock. Higher capacity magazines are also available.

Ruger 10/22 History

The Ruger 10/22 rifle is America’s favorite 22 LR rifle, with proven performance in a wide range of styles for every rimfire application. Ideally suited for informal target shooting, “plinking,” small game hunting and action-shooting events, Ruger has sold millions of 10/22 rifles since their introduction in 1964. With its legendary action and renowned reliable rotary magazine, all 10/22 rifles are sleek, perfectly balanced, rugged and superbly accurate. With a variety of choices – from the standard 10/22 Carbine, to the tack-driving accuracy of the Target model, the 10/22 is still today’s most popular 22 rifle. It looks right, feels right, shoots right and continues to perform under heavy use – inspiring the most fanatical loyalty from its owners. With proven design, legendary reliability and the modern features demanded by today’s 22 LR shooters, these firearms are priced right to make keeping tradition affordable.

The Ruger 10/22 was immediately popular upon its release, being one of the first modern rifles chambered in .22LR which was designed as a quality adult gun (with adult ergonomics) and not a cheap “youth rifle.” However, its easy handling characteristics, negligible recoil and inexpensive ammunition nonetheless make it ideal for young or inexperienced shooters.

It is very popular for small-game hunters and those who want an inexpensive rifle firing inexpensive ammunition for target and plinking use. This popularity has led to many after-market modifications being available to improve performance, augment the rifle’s looks, or increase its magazine capacity, leading the 10/22 to be one of the most customizable firearms made.

Ruger 10/22 Clones

Custom manufacturers also make “clones” of the 10/22, which are similar in design (most parts will interchange) but built to much higher specifications and costs. The 10/22 barrel uses a unique attachment method where the barrel is screwed rather than pinned into the frame (the barrel is not threaded, but attachment involves two screws), making removal and replacement of the barrel (which would require a gunsmith’s work with most other rifles) very easy. This, when combined with the simple construction of the rest of the components, means that the average person can easily replace any part in the gun with nothing more than a screwdriver, a hex key and simple punches.

Ruger 10/22 Variations

The Ruger 10/22 is available in a wide variety of configurations. As of 2012, there are six basic Ruger 10/22 models, not counting distributor exclusives which come in numerous variations and combinations. In addition there are variations in stocks, finish, and other features for each model, such as hardwood, laminated wood, and synthetic stocks are available.

There is also a 22″ stainless barreled version, without a barrel band around the stock, of which Wal-Mart is the exclusive dealer. Production of this model has been discontinued. In April 2012, the new “Takedown” stainless version was introduced. The “Takedown” model has an 18.5″ stainless barrel and a synthetic black stock, which are able to separate into two sub-assemblies for ease of transport with a backpack-style transport case.

Ruger 10/22 Magazines

There are many types of magazines for the Ruger 10/22. The standard 10/22 ships with a black 10 round rotary magazine. Ruger has also produced a clear, polycarbonate 40th anniversary edition 10 round magazine as well as a five round rotary magazine (for states that restrict magazine capacities). In 2011-2012 Ruger came out with the Ruger BX-25, a 25 round box magazine with a black composite frame and steel feed lips. Aftermarket options include 25, 30, and 50 round box magazines; 50 round tear-drop-shaped rotary magazines, and a 50 round drum magazines.

The standard 10-round 10/22 magazine stores the cartridges in a rotary fashion, rather than stacked, as seen in a box magazine. This allows the magazine to fit flush into the rifle without protruding from the stock at the natural balance point for one handed carry. The action of the rifle strips a cartridge from the magazine with each shot, allowing the next cartridge to feed into place.

Care should be taken not to use all magazines interchangeably. The owners manual for the 10/22 Magnum model states, “Do not attempt to use standard 10/22 magazines in the 10/22 Magnum rifles or load 22 short, long, or long rifle ammunition into the 22 magnum. They will not function correctly and are unsafe to use in 22 Magnum rifles.” It goes on to say, “Never attempt to use 22 Long Rifle ammunition in Ruger 10/22 Magnum rifle magazines. The cartridges have a smaller case diameter and can split or burst when fired in the larger magnum chamber, releasing hot powder gasses and particle fragments out of the action at high speed, possibly resulting in injury to the shooter or bystanders.”

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