Among the most exciting rifles to come down the pike this year is the Ruger Rimfire Precision Rifle. This is a bolt-action rimfire rifle chambered for the .22 Long Rifle cartridge. The rifle is based on the full-size Ruger Precision rifle. The rifle would make a great understudy for the .308 rifle, but it is also a fine choice for anyone interested in using an accurate rifle for recreational shooting or small game hunting. This scaled down rifle features the same ergonomics as the full-size version, and the same manual of arms and trigger action as the Ruger Precision rifle. The rifle may be the ideal trainer for those interested in learning the art of long-range shooting. As a stand-alone rifle—for any pursuit that the .22 Long Rifle cartridge is suitable for—the Ruger Rimfire Precision Rifle is a great choice.
The rifle is well made of good material with a business like appearance. The rifle features a molded stock that is actually a chassis not a stock in the true precision-rifle mold. This assembly is constructed from glass-filled nylon. This material offers rigidity and resistance to weather warpage or heat. The chassis does not shift and offers a stable firing platform.
The stock is also adjustable for drop and cheek weld. The stock proved one of the more popular features among those who participated in the initial shooting session I conducted. The shooters, ranging in size from small to well to well over six feet tall, found the Ruger Rimfire Precision rifle offered a good fit. The adjustment isn’t difficult at all. A bonus is that the chassis features witness marks to allow the stock to be moved back to a previous position. The chassis is more advanced than I expected from a .22 rimfire design. The development of the chassis for the centerfire rifle crossed over to the rimfire well.
The rifle has several innovative features including an adjustable bolt throw. It took a while for me to get the hang of this and understand its usefulness. The bolt is designed to allow the bolt throw to be adjustable by removal of a spring clip. The bolt throw may be changed from the standard .22 Long Rifle-type bolt movement of 1.5 inches to the centerfire action 3-inch bolt throw. This makes the rifle less susceptible to short stroking the action. The bolt handle is a competition type that offers excellent control.
The rifle features an 18-inch target grade barrel. This barrel is forged from 4140 steel. The rifling is precisely cut and offers excellent accuracy. The barrel is threaded at the muzzle for a sound suppressor. (That would be a neat set up!) The rifle features a free-floating handguard. This handguard features attachments for lights or lasers.
The Ruger adjustable trigger is designed to allow adjustment from 2.25 to 5.0 pounds. This is a crisp light trigger with no creep or backlash. This trigger is very controllable and ideal for precision work.
The rifle features an AR-15-type pistol grip. The rifle grip is similar to the Ruger AR 556 rifle. The safety is an AR-15 type, at least similar enough for easy familiarity. The safety is reversible. Another nice touch is that the wrench for trigger adjustment is stored in the butt stock.
The rifle features a rail for easy scope mounting. The Ruger is supplied with a single 15-round X magazine. Ruger introduced a 25-round magazine some time ago and then the 15-round magazine with the M1 carbine-type Ruger 10/22. The 15-round magazine is a good compromise between the 10- and 25-round magazines when firing off the benchrest.
I mounted an inexpensive, but useful, riflescope. The Centerpointe scope was easily mounted and required a few shots to sight in at 25 yards. This is a useful distance to begin the sight in process for precision shooting. I had on hand a good supply of Federal Cartridge Company .22 Long Rifle hi speed hollow points, Fiocchi HV loading, and Wolf Match loads. It is great fun to fire off a few boxes of ammunition from the bench rest. The Ruger Rimfire Precision Rifle is a joy to fire and use.
After sighting the rifle in at 25 yards, I moved to 50 yards, a standard distance for testing the .22 Long Rifle. Results were excellent. The Federal and Fiocchi loads traded for top honors, with good strings from each. The best groups were around .8 inch at 50 yards. A good solid chassis and excellent trigger added up to good results.
The Ruger Rimfire Precision Rifle is an excellent all-around rifle and a good buy. It is well suited to target shooting, practice for larger rifles, and small game hunting. There is really nothing like it, and Ruger has a winner with this rifle.
Are you a small game hunter? Do you shoot a .22 Long Rifle for target? Share your tips in the comment section.