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Thread: Ruger M77 & Winchester Model 70

  1. #1

    Default Ruger M77 & Winchester Model 70

    This is not a verses thread, but I would like to hear all your opinions regarding these two proven platforms.

    I've owned 3 Model 70 Classics to date, & have never had an issue with any. All being totally reliable!
    Being that I've never owned any Ruger M77, I cant comment on these. But my hunting buddy does in 30-06, & it's a great cheap$ rig from what I can see.

    So the question is. How do they compare? What has been your experience with them? How do you rate them? Value for money? Design? And lastly we might as well compare them closely, as I feel they're both a tough-as-nails no BS serious CRF hunting tool.



    340


    PS-I know there are different models within both, so lets just compare them all

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by 340Wby View Post
    as I feel they're both a tough-as-nails no BS serious CRF hunting tool.
    Thats about it! Not much else flare to mention, the Ruger will always go bang when you need it to....grin

  3. #3

    Default good rifles

    I have owned 3 Ruger rifles. They are stout, usually reliable rifles that most of us can afford. I prefer the CRF Winchester rifles. That Ruger Hawkeye African model is the best feeling factory rifle I have lifted in a long time. I did hear stocks were splitting on them though.

  4. #4

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    Seriously though....I have owned a lot of different guns over the years and have established differing views about each brand. If I was gonna do a "Into the Wild" kind of thing, I'd want a Stainless/Syn Ruger M77 in a 30cal or 338 variation and plenty of ammo and all would be good. Lots of people talk about the bad years Ruger had with sloppy headspacing and them not being good shooters but to me thats all hogwash. They are extremely reliable firearms that last a long time under heavy use. The 3 position safety and CRF are just pluses to me, though some really liked the tang safetys too. The old boat paddle stocks though not liked by many were solid SOB's too.

  5. #5
    Moderator Snyd's Avatar
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    I've owned a couple Ruger M77's. Both were the old tang safety models. One was 7mm with a Burris 3x9 scope on it and man what a shooter that thing was. Factory 150gr hornady's would shoot one hole at 100 yds. I sold that one to buy parts for my truck to drive up the ALCAN to move to Alaska about 18 years ago. The other was an 06 with a cheap Bushnell scope and I shot lots of moose and a couple caribou with it. It didn't group as tight as the 7mm but it was a good hunting rifle. Neither one ever let me down and I don't baby my rifles in the field.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

  6. #6
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    Default Win. Mdl 70 vs Ruger

    It is kinda like comparing a Craftsman wrench to a Snap On wrench. The Craftsman (Ruger) is strong and dependable casting that will do the job and cost less money. The Snap On ( Win.) wrench does exactly the same job but its a slimer trimmer better finished forging and cost more. At lot of shooters understand tools, if you do this is a pretty good analogy.

    On the surface and to the causal user theri isn't much difference between the two wrenches or guns. However, if you appreciate fine tools or rifles buy the Winchester. If function is the only thing you worry about and cost is an object buy the Ruger.

  7. #7
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    I own both but if I had to pick one it would be the Win 70 (or one of its clones such as the Dakota 76 or Montana Rifle Company).
    The reason I would choose the Win 70 design is simply because of the trigger. It is about as foolproof and wetherproof a trigger as you can find on a modern firearm. To bad Winchester decided to change it on there newly released models.
    Peyton, Colorado

  8. #8
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    Default I don't know about that....

    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    It is kinda like comparing a Craftsman wrench to a Snap On wrench. The Craftsman (Ruger) is strong and dependable casting that will do the job and cost less money. The Snap On ( Win.) wrench does exactly the same job but its a slimer trimmer better finished forging and cost more. At lot of shooters understand tools, if you do this is a pretty good analogy.

    On the surface and to the causal user theri isn't much difference between the two wrenches or guns. However, if you appreciate fine tools or rifles buy the Winchester. If function is the only thing you worry about and cost is an object buy the Ruger.
    There was a lot a garbage produced under the Winchester name during the last few years of USRAC. I, for one, wasn't sorry to see them go. Ruger, on the other hand, has only gotten better over the last few years. I have high hopes for the new Winchesters, but if we're talking about rifles from the past 10-15 years, I'd go with the Ruger.

  9. #9

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    My sentiments exactly walk-in, folks thinking the Winchester Rifles of the last 10 years or so are of high quality doesn't mesh with my view at all. Their prices got higher and their quality got lower. Ruger on the flipside as you stated, has only improved. I can only imagine the new ones (Win) will have to be better to not only match the price they are asking, but also to mend the rep they developed under USRAC. If it isn't, they'll be in big trouble.

  10. #10
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default

    The M-70 style action has a positive lock on the firing pin in both saftey positions. (The one that allows the bolt to move and the one that locks the bolt.) Just like the M-98 and Springfields do.

    The newer rear saftey Ruger M-77MKIIs only locks the firing pin in the last bolt locked position. While the M-77MKII safety appears to be the same as the M-70 style, it is not. The safety is actually mounted on the lower part of the receiver and not the bolt as it appears at first glance. It supposedly locks the trigger mechanism in the middle position, but it does not block the firing pin while moving the bolt in order to cycle rounds from the magazine.
    That being said, there is nothing wrong with an M77MKII Ruger for their price range. They will never be a true Pre-64 Winchester, a Dakota (which I think is better than a real pre-64) or even a Montana rifle.
    But you can buy two or three Rugers for the price of some other rifles.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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    I have a M77MkII SS, 30-06 and the more I shoot it the better it gets. I have always wanted a Winchester M70, but.

    The Ruger comes with rings!

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    Default 70's and 77's

    the craftsman/snap-on analogy is a good one . I've never got too excited about the " new " Pre-64's because I had too many of the old ones , no real rifleman is ever going to say they're even close to the same , you just have to pick up an old one and hold it for a half minute . The old Ruger (tang safety) 77's were tack drivers , I've had a half dozen and they were great , the tang safety is the best there is for speed and ease . Someone finally brought up head space . If you're a serious gun buyer you should own a set of gauges ( go , no-go and field ) and check out anything you buy , most shops are o.k. with it although it does take some talking when you start sliding extractors off their collars . Brownells sells the sets and it's a good idea , I've paid alot for a couple guns that left the primers sitting pretty odd . My vote goes to mint shape tang safety Ruger RS 's , great guns .

  13. #13
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    Default

    I own both, but I use my ruger more. Shorter 22 inches, then the M70 at 24. Shoots really well. Now my ruger in 1992 was more money then the M70 in 1992, but the stainless ruger called me, the M70 called my wife.

    Ron

  14. #14
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    Default

    My son and I have a total of six M77's, one a tang safety and the rest MK II's. All are MOA with factory ammo, they feel great, and are one of the better looking rifles out there. Have never had a problem with any of them. Worked in a gun shop in 2003 - 2005 and we sold Rugers over all others at least 10 -1 and never had one come back. On the other hand we had many problems with the few Winchesters we sold, crooked barrels, sights off center etc, etc. Can't beat the Rugers IMHO.

  15. #15
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    My first centerfire rifle was a Ruger 77 Tang. I never knew there was such a thing as having a problem with a new firearm. Over the years I found out however. I have a Rem. 700 in 300 WM that I had to send back because of feeding problems, its still rough. I just bought a used Ruger 77RS MK II in 300 WM to possibly replace it. I haven't shot it yet, but ran some rounds though the action. I couldn't feel them at all, meaning it felt like I was cycling the bolt with no catridges...so smooth. Now I have three 77's, a 308 International Tang, a 30-06 Tang, and now the 300WM MK II. Never had a M70.

  16. #16
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    Default Ruger vs. Win. / Craftsman vs. Snap-On

    I'll admit I haven't owned any Win. branded products made in the last few years of production. I have a couple of SS Classics but both are probably some years old- I bought them both used. Judging from the SS followers and the SNs there aren't of the last productions runs.

    My analogy was partially to the forged receiver of the M70 and casting of the Ruger. Like the wrench and any other part, forging produces a stronger less bulky product with machined rather than cast working surfaces. Rugers look and work work great; if you are happy with a Craftsman wrench and don't see why anyone would pay the extra money for a Snap-on that is perfectly O.K.

    To me the Ruger bolt guns and pistols just don't feel right - just like a Craftsman wrench doesn't feel like a Snap-On in my hand. I should mention that I'm not a mechanic but do occassionaly fool with auto and other repairs.

    That being said I own both Rugers and Winchester along with many other brands and models along with Craftsman and Snap-On tools. When I want to beat a rusted up bolt off I grap a Craftsman wrench; when I want a beat around gun to toss in the boat or truck I grab a Ruger. When I have time to enjoy working on a piece of nice machinery in a nice enviornment I go for the Snap-On tools. If the weather is nice and I'm in the woods for the enjoyment of being in the woods I'll take one of my better guns.

    The attention to detail and worksmanship on all guns has declined significantly in the last few decades. Edges aren't as straight and even, surfaces aren't flat, surfaces covered by another part aren't touched during the finishing process, etc. I see this on all brands, the very early M77s and No. 1s, and Blackhawks are nicely finished guns compared to the products of today. I really miss the fit and finish of the older guns on the newer products.

    On the other hand, the precision of manufacturing and the metallugy have improved significantly. I don't think these improvements show up on rifles as much as other more complicated guns like revolvers and autoloaders but maybe I'm missing something.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    when I want a beat around gun to toss in the boat or truck I grab a Ruger. When I have time to enjoy working on a piece of nice machinery in a nice enviornment I go for the Snap-On tools. If the weather is nice and I'm in the woods for the enjoyment of being in the woods I'll take one of my better guns.
    I guess we's all different. I cant really understand the above statement, hunting is hunting, and in IME in Alaska it isn't ever a predicted "nice day in the woods" seeking enjoyment. Not sure what you mean by that. I am always hard on equipment whether the gun is strapped to my pack, stuffed in a gun boot on the wheeler, or on the floor of the boat. If your referring to collectibles with beautiful marbled wood that see the woods seldom, then I can understand that. But I think the original poster actually wants to take the rifle hunting.....grin I am always seeking enjoyment in the woods but never have been able to predict a nice day!


    P.S. I do have a late 80's Model 70 300WM in the safe, though it doesn't see much use anymore.

  18. #18

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    Hmm... both are good but we all know that. I dont like the Ruger recoil lug thing that they have going on and prefer the M70 lug. I prefer the M70 trigger and I like the ease of field stripping the bolt on the M70. I do like the magazine latch system better on the M77. I think today if I were looking at a no BS CRF rifle, I would look at CZ's.

  19. #19
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    Default agreed

    Quote Originally Posted by TomM View Post
    Hmm... both are good but we all know that. I dont like the Ruger recoil lug thing that they have going on and prefer the M70 lug. I prefer the M70 trigger and I like the ease of field stripping the bolt on the M70. I do like the magazine latch system better on the M77. I think today if I were looking at a no BS CRF rifle, I would look at CZ's.
    I would agree with you on the CZs. They're a nice rifle for the money.
    I only own 1 Ruger. Its a stainless MkII that was rebarrelled to 35 Whelen before I bought it. Its a tack driver....shoots better than I can on most days. There are 2 things I didn't like about it when I got it. First, the factory trigger was horrible. That was an easy 1/2 hr. fix to install a Timney trigger. Second, mine has the old style "boat paddle" synthetic stock. Eventually, maybe I'll replace that, but I haven't felt the overwhelming desire to spend the money for a new stock yet.
    Over the last couple years, this has become my go-to gun. I have others, but this one does the job, and its not one that I am sentimentally attached to, so I don't spend as much time worrying about my gun when I'm hunting. Its a tool, and it absolutely does the job I want it to do.
    As far as the Snap-On/Craftsman comparison goes.....I do make a living with my tools, and they're all Snap-On. It has nothing to do with looks. It has everything to do with the fact that Craftsman's lifetime warranty doesn't do me any good if I'm on a gravel bar in the middle of the Yukon trying to fix an airplane when I break a socket. I know the Snap-On one won't break and I'll be able to fly back to town. That analogy doesn't hold true when comparing Ruger and Winchester.

  20. #20
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    Default Ruger vs. Win.

    When I used the comparison of wrenches on purpose I should have been more specific as to type of wrench - in this case a simple open end or combo wrench. I used the wrench analogy for several reasons. One is the feel you as actually hold it and use it - what feels right. The other reason is that I've never broken a Craftsman wrench although I have busted their sockets. Like Rugers the Craftsman wrenches are stout - just a bit cruder and heavier and bulkier than a forged part.

    Rugers bolt rifles are still fairly new - we will see how they past the test of time. As to hanging my job or life on it I'm with you - I'll go with a forging instead of a casting everytime.

    I haven't bought any Snap-On tools in quite a while but the Craftsman tools certainly aren't what they used to be at least appearance wise. Craftsman - like the gun manufactures has taken very obvious steps to cut costs. Like Ruger, more and more of the tools are cast rather than forged machinings. I guess a lot of people just know know and/or don't care. For vast majority of users I guess they will never even know the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by walk-in View Post
    As far as the Snap-On/Craftsman comparison goes.....I do make a living with my tools, and they're all Snap-On. It has nothing to do with looks. It has everything to do with the fact that Craftsman's lifetime warranty doesn't do me any good if I'm on a gravel bar in the middle of the Yukon trying to fix an airplane when I break a socket. I know the Snap-On one won't break and I'll be able to fly back to town. That analogy doesn't hold true when comparing Ruger and Winchester.

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