Well, I finally got my Ruger American Rifle in .308 this week. I mentioned in another thread in General Discussion that I was planning on building a Scout on this rifle; I plan on doing just that over the next few months (years? Ugh, I hope not...), and I'll try to document the journey and keep ya'll in the loop.
Its a Ruger. Solid & well made, especially so for a 'Price Point' rifle. Oily as hell, especially under the scope bases (which are included...and match Weaver #46s for the Savage...).
Verifying the chamber was empty, I clamped it in my vise, cycled the bolt, and got out my trigger pull gauge. Lyman said that the average for 10 pulls was 3lb, 12.2oz. Not bad regarding weight, but it was creepy as all heck. I'll be diving in on the sear and trigger surfaces later.
I took the stock off, and started wiping it down. Stock might be a weak point on this one...thin up front and very light. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I think the free floated barrel might contact the stock in prone with a bipod. Magazine secures to the stock, not the action. Not a huge fan of that from a durability standpoint, but no real need to fix it if it ain't broken. (if it DOES break, I'll have to fix it!!!)
Read up on the Marksman Trigger, whipped out my trusty 3/32" allen wrench from Snap-on, and started playing around a little. After adjusting a little, she broke at an average of 3lb 1oz. I'll need to drive some rollpins out to 'dig in' to the trigger group, but that will wait till after I can see what she'll do. Sear engagement is visible through a hole in the trigger group plate, and it looks like it has about a half mile of engagement! Jeez...time to get out my stones! There appears to be quite a few MIM parts, and the trigger has noticeable side to side movement when pulling through. I'll use up some of my shims and make that better when I tear into it.
Got the action back into the stock, snugged everything up to spec, and mounted a VX1 2-7x33 in some Leupy PRW rings. Boresighted it, mounted a bipod on it, and will try to get out to shoot it ASAP to see what she'll do, accuracy wise. Nothing good to feed her, but I do have 5 or 6 boxes of Winchester Q3130 to settle her in with. Until I get my press up and running, she'll probably eat a diet of Federal Fusion for field duties, and we'll hammer out the best load later.
Plans for later...
Reinforce stock, install 3rd stud for Andy's sling, send it off to get camo-dipped (why not? I think it would be cool to have it in similar camo to what I wear hunting...and its my damn rifle!!!)
Cut barrel to 18ish inches, thread 5/8x20tpi, and install mounting collar and compensator for suppressor
Drill & tap barrel for scope mount, fabricate picatinny rail to mount on barrel, install AR-style sight post in rail, mount it all up
Get action coated/treated in a dark grey (I'm thinking similar to Ruger's Target Grey)
Fabricate larger bolt handle & install; blacken bolt body
I'll keep ya'll posted as I get a chance.
Anyone that wants to contribute to the MRARSC (MCKNBRD's Ruger American Rifle Scout Conversion) fund, PM me.