Review- Ruger Guide Gun Chambered In 30-06

Aussie_Hunter

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I thought I would take some time to share my thoughts on the Ruger Guide Gun chambered in 30-06 as I have used this rifle in the field for around 4 years now. I bought one of these rifles new in mid 2017 and as of yesterday I have put around 1100 rounds through it (give or take 50 rounds) and taken around 400 pigs with it here in Australia.

A few things about this rifle.
The bolt is fairly rough straight out of the box and can become quite sticky in harsh conditions (heavy dust). Having said this, with use the action is wearing in and becoming much smoother, it now cycles as smoothly as any other bolt action rifle I have owned. If you were to buy one of these rifles new I highly recommended spending a bit of time in front of the TV cycling the bolt to smooth it out or getting a gunsmith to slick the action up for you.

The laminate stock, I actually really like the green laminate stock and the idea of the spacers so the LOP can be adjusted, the laminate stock from factory also comes with a very durable rubber recoil pad. But, now the rifle has seen quite a bit of use I am running into some issues with the laminate stock, the stock has absolutely zero glass or alloy bedding, I have noticed the action has started wiggling itself loose from the stock far too easily. Some of this being my fault, letting the screws come loose under heavy use and then over tightening them, even so with time and use I believe you will run into issues as the laminate stock is just too soft to lock up against the action properly.

I have mostly used this rifle fitted with a Leupold VX1 2-7 or Leupold VX Hog 1-4 and most hunting has been done at short mid ranges (0-150m). Accuracy out of the box with factory ammunition has been outstanding, shooting 1" groups or less at 100 yards no problems at all mostly using 180 grain Federal Fusion.

Recently I have started hunting some areas where I am having to reach out to 200-250m so I now have a Redfield 3-9 scope fitted to the rifle and since I recently started having issues with the factory stock as mentioned above, I purchased a new Hogue "B" barrel stock with the full block bedding for this rifle. With this new stock fitted and the 3-9 scope I am shooting 3 shot groups at around 0.3-0.4 of an inch at 100m (photo below) using my handloads which are 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps, yep that's right I'm pushing the 165 grain Woodleighs at 2995 fps from a 20" barrel. This configuration will soon change again though as I have recently purchased an old model Ruger Alaskan in 375 and plan to fit the Hogue block bedded stock and 3-9 scope to the 375 for use in the areas where I am shooting the longer distances and go back to the 2-7 Leupold on my 30-06 with the pillar bedded Hogue stock that came on the Alaskan which will again be used in the areas I am shooting 0-150m.

At the end of the day even with the factory stock bedding issue I can't say enough good things about this rifle, it is as Ruger advertises "rugged and reliable". Mine often works very hard, hunting from dawn to dusk, several days in a row with minimal cleaning in hot humid tropical conditions or in very hot dry dusty conditions and has never let me down once. If I was to buy another one of these rifles new again and there is a good chance I will in a few years time I would work on the action a little bit straight out of the box and look at maybe glass bedding the stock or buying a bedded Hogue stock and fitting it from new and keep the factory stock as a spare or sell it to cover some of the costs of the Hogue stock.

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun still in the factory stock with a Leupold VX Hog 1-4.
1615071189087.png


30-06 Ruger Guide Gun in Hogue stock with Redfield 3-9 scope
1615071409894.png


30-06 Ruger Guide Gun 3 shot group at 100m using Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN
1615071491201.png


Hand loaded 30-06 ammo, 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps
1615071579975.png
 

CAustin

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I thought I would take some time to share my thoughts on the Ruger Guide Gun chambered in 30-06 as I have used this rifle in the field for around 4 years now. I bought one of these rifles new in mid 2017 and as of yesterday I have put around 1100 rounds through it (give or take 50 rounds) and taken around 400 pigs with it here in Australia.

A few things about this rifle.
The bolt is fairly rough straight out of the box and can become quite sticky in harsh conditions (heavy dust). Having said this, with use the action is wearing in and becoming much smoother, it now cycles as smoothly as any other bolt action rifle I have owned. If you were to buy one of these rifles new I highly recommended spending a bit of time in front of the TV cycling the bolt to smooth it out or getting a gunsmith to slick the action up for you.

The laminate stock, I actually really like the green laminate stock and the idea of the spacers so the LOP can be adjusted, the laminate stock from factory also comes with a very durable rubber recoil pad. But, now the rifle has seen quite a bit of use I am running into some issues with the laminate stock, the stock has absolutely zero glass or alloy bedding, I have noticed the action has started wiggling itself loose from the stock far too easily. Some of this being my fault, letting the screws come loose under heavy use and then over tightening them, even so with time and use I believe you will run into issues as the laminate stock is just too soft to lock up against the action properly.

I have mostly used this rifle fitted with a Leupold VX1 2-7 or Leupold VX Hog 1-4 and most hunting has been done at short mid ranges (0-150m). Accuracy out of the box with factory ammunition has been outstanding, shooting 1" groups or less at 100 yards no problems at all mostly using 180 grain Federal Fusion.

Recently I have started hunting some areas where I am having to reach out to 200-250m so I now have a Redfield 3-9 scope fitted to the rifle and since I recently started having issues with the factory stock as mentioned above, I purchased a new Hogue "B" barrel stock with the full block bedding for this rifle. With this new stock fitted and the 3-9 scope I am shooting 3 shot groups at around 0.3-0.4 of an inch at 100m (photo below) using my handloads which are 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps, yep that's right I'm pushing the 165 grain Woodleighs at 2995 fps from a 20" barrel. This configuration will soon change again though as I have recently purchased an old model Ruger Alaskan in 375 and plan to fit the Hogue block bedded stock and 3-9 scope to the 375 for use in the areas where I am shooting the longer distances and go back to the 2-7 Leupold on my 30-06 with the pillar bedded Hogue stock that came on the Alaskan which will again be used in the areas I am shooting 0-150m.

At the end of the day even with the factory stock bedding issue I can't say enough good things about this rifle, it is as Ruger advertises "rugged and reliable". Mine often works very hard, hunting from dawn to dusk, several days in a row with minimal cleaning in hot humid tropical conditions or in very hot dry dusty conditions and has never let me down once. If I was to buy another one of these rifles new again and there is a good chance I will in a few years time I would work on the action a little bit straight out of the box and look at maybe glass bedding the stock or buying a bedded Hogue stock and fitting it from new and keep the factory stock as a spare or sell it to cover some of the costs of the Hogue stock.

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun still in the factory stock with a Leupold VX Hog 1-4.
View attachment 391986

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun in Hogue stock with Redfield 3-9 scope
View attachment 391987

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun 3 shot group at 100m using Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN
View attachment 391988

Hand loaded 30-06 ammo, 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps
View attachment 391989
I have the same rifle in 416 Ruger and I have enjoyed it very much. They are great rifles for the money
 

Hearties

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Nice rifle and review - thanks.
2,995 FPS with a 165gr bullet is very impressive. I’m running 2950 with 165gr Sierra Gamechangers from a 25” barrel and thought that was high...
What powder / load are you using?
 

Aussie_Hunter

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Nice rifle and review - thanks.
2,995 FPS with a 165gr bullet is very impressive. I’m running 2950 with 165gr Sierra Gamechangers from a 25” barrel and thought that was high...
What powder / load are you using?
I worked up a load using Alliant RL17. I wont list the exact powder charge here as Woodleigh don't even list any data for the 30-06 using RL17 and the powder charge I am using is above max for any published data I have seen using RL17 for the 30-06 but a safe starting point would be 56.5 grains of RL17 using the Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN if you wanted to work up a load.

Below is what I am using.
Federal Brass.
Federal LR match primers.
Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN.
Alliant RL17.

All though the powder charge I am using is over max for the published data I have seen I worked up slowly and have not run into any pressure issues.
I've actually pushed 165 grain SST's and Nosler Accubonds up to 3126fps & 3124fps using Rl17. Accuracy was good but believe it or not even when I dropped the velocity back a bit on both I still got better accuracy with the Woodleighs which I thought was very surprising.
 

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What is the barrel thickness?
On photo it looks like varmint barrel, but I could be wrong, due to visual pereception of short barrel.
Nice review, btw, thanks for sharing! (y)
 

Hearties

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I worked up a load using Alliant RL17. I wont list the exact powder charge here as Woodleigh don't even list any data for the 30-06 using RL17 and the powder charge I am using is above max for any published data I have seen using RL17 for the 30-06 but a safe starting point would be 56.5 grains of RL17 using the Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN if you wanted to work up a load.

Below is what I am using.
Federal Brass.
Federal LR match primers.
Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN.
Alliant RL17.

All though the powder charge I am using is over max for the published data I have seen I worked up slowly and have not run into any pressure issues.
I've actually pushed 165 grain SST's and Nosler Accubonds up to 3126fps & 3124fps using Rl17. Accuracy was good but believe it or not even when I dropped the velocity back a bit on both I still got better accuracy with the Woodleighs which I thought was very surprising.

Thanks. Thought it would have to be RL17 for those velocities. I’m using Norma URP which is a dead ringer for RL16.
 

Aussie_Hunter

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What is the barrel thickness?
On photo it looks like varmint barrel, but I could be wrong, due to visual pereception of short barrel.
Nice review, btw, thanks for sharing! (y)
Haven't measured it but it is a heavy contour, 30-06 being the smallest chambering going up to the 416 Ruger. Believe it or not this is the lightest rifle I currently own, I seem to be the opposite to a lot of people out there, I like heavy barrel profiles and overall heavier weight rifles, I just seem to shoot them better, carrying the extra weight doesn't bother me.
 

mark-hunter

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Thank, @Aussie_Hunter
I believe that it is not too heavy, certainly, my varmint rifle is not.
Personally I like heavy barrels as well.

Thanks for reply.

Guide gun is very appealing to me, unfortunately, not imported in my country, I was looking at it (on internet) at the time when looking for new hunting rifle. (they import only ruger american rifle r2, rugers lower end rifle.)
(y)
 

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I have the same rifle and completely agree. Overall, it's the best rifle I own. I've killed a lot of game with mine and it's exceeded my expectations in every way. It's an unbelievably good rifle right out of the box. Ditto the action comments. Mine is a smooth as butter now and all I did was use it but it wasn't bad from the get go.
 

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I have the same rifle and completely agree. Overall, it's the best rifle I own. I've killed a lot of game with mine and it's exceeded my expectations in every way. It's an unbelievably good rifle right out of the box. Ditto the action comments. Mine is a smooth as butter now and all I did was use it but it wasn't bad from the get go.
Yeah it’s a solid bit of gear! Hard to beat it especially at that price point.
 

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Nice review.

RL-17 Is my favorite powder in several calibers, but I have yet to try it in the odd-six. I have a good supply of 165 grain A-Frames so might get there some day.

It can be temp sensitive - or was for me in the 6.5 CM with 140s, on a hot summer afternoon. What was the temperature range during your load development and hunting?
 

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Nice review.

RL-17 Is my favorite powder in several calibers, but I have yet to try it in the odd-six. I have a good supply of 165 grain A-Frames so might get there some day.

It can be temp sensitive - or was for me in the 6.5 CM with 140s, on a hot summer afternoon. What was the temperature range during your load development and hunting?
Temp range was a stinking hot 35 degrees Celsius and 80-90% humidity to extra stinking hot. Pretty much what you get here for 6 months of the year.
 

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I have one of these, in 30-06 with the laminated stock. I bought used, though one would be hard pressed to find signs of prior use.
Interestingly, and the reason that I bought it was that the muzzle brake thread had been cut off and a re-crown job done. The barrel length is a tad over 19” now.
I look forward to eventually getting it to the range. I might eventually replace the laminated stock with a lighter fiberglass one. But, I am in no real hurry to do. Though the laminated one will most likely be bedded.
 
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I thought I would take some time to share my thoughts on the Ruger Guide Gun chambered in 30-06 as I have used this rifle in the field for around 4 years now. I bought one of these rifles new in mid 2017 and as of yesterday I have put around 1100 rounds through it (give or take 50 rounds) and taken around 400 pigs with it here in Australia.

A few things about this rifle.
The bolt is fairly rough straight out of the box and can become quite sticky in harsh conditions (heavy dust). Having said this, with use the action is wearing in and becoming much smoother, it now cycles as smoothly as any other bolt action rifle I have owned. If you were to buy one of these rifles new I highly recommended spending a bit of time in front of the TV cycling the bolt to smooth it out or getting a gunsmith to slick the action up for you.

The laminate stock, I actually really like the green laminate stock and the idea of the spacers so the LOP can be adjusted, the laminate stock from factory also comes with a very durable rubber recoil pad. But, now the rifle has seen quite a bit of use I am running into some issues with the laminate stock, the stock has absolutely zero glass or alloy bedding, I have noticed the action has started wiggling itself loose from the stock far too easily. Some of this being my fault, letting the screws come loose under heavy use and then over tightening them, even so with time and use I believe you will run into issues as the laminate stock is just too soft to lock up against the action properly.

I have mostly used this rifle fitted with a Leupold VX1 2-7 or Leupold VX Hog 1-4 and most hunting has been done at short mid ranges (0-150m). Accuracy out of the box with factory ammunition has been outstanding, shooting 1" groups or less at 100 yards no problems at all mostly using 180 grain Federal Fusion.

Recently I have started hunting some areas where I am having to reach out to 200-250m so I now have a Redfield 3-9 scope fitted to the rifle and since I recently started having issues with the factory stock as mentioned above, I purchased a new Hogue "B" barrel stock with the full block bedding for this rifle. With this new stock fitted and the 3-9 scope I am shooting 3 shot groups at around 0.3-0.4 of an inch at 100m (photo below) using my handloads which are 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps, yep that's right I'm pushing the 165 grain Woodleighs at 2995 fps from a 20" barrel. This configuration will soon change again though as I have recently purchased an old model Ruger Alaskan in 375 and plan to fit the Hogue block bedded stock and 3-9 scope to the 375 for use in the areas where I am shooting the longer distances and go back to the 2-7 Leupold on my 30-06 with the pillar bedded Hogue stock that came on the Alaskan which will again be used in the areas I am shooting 0-150m.

At the end of the day even with the factory stock bedding issue I can't say enough good things about this rifle, it is as Ruger advertises "rugged and reliable". Mine often works very hard, hunting from dawn to dusk, several days in a row with minimal cleaning in hot humid tropical conditions or in very hot dry dusty conditions and has never let me down once. If I was to buy another one of these rifles new again and there is a good chance I will in a few years time I would work on the action a little bit straight out of the box and look at maybe glass bedding the stock or buying a bedded Hogue stock and fitting it from new and keep the factory stock as a spare or sell it to cover some of the costs of the Hogue stock.

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun still in the factory stock with a Leupold VX Hog 1-4.
View attachment 391986

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun in Hogue stock with Redfield 3-9 scope
View attachment 391987

30-06 Ruger Guide Gun 3 shot group at 100m using Woodleigh 165 grain PPSN
View attachment 391988

Hand loaded 30-06 ammo, 165 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2995fps
View attachment 391989
@Aussie hunter
Great and honest review. Why don't you just get the original stock glass and pillar beded. Every Ruger owner I have spoken to has the same bolt issue as you when new especially in stainless models.
It's a pity you have fired more shots than pigs got. That w ould be nice.
Bob
 

Aussie_Hunter

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@Aussie hunter
Great and honest review. Why don't you just get the original stock glass and pillar beded. Every Ruger owner I have spoken to has the same bolt issue as you when new especially in stainless models.
It's a pity you have fired more shots than pigs got. That w ould be nice.
Bob
Still got the original stock here, might do that one day, I actually really like that stock and the checkering plus the adjustable LOP. haha yeah round count is higher than pig count but it has done a bit of range work as well. When I'm culling pigs out west my strike rate is usually around 60-70%, mostly moving targets.
 

ldmay375

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Today I put mine in a Bell & Carlson stock. Bell & Carlson just recently started making these for the Ruger’s with the 30-06 length action and magnum barrel channel. I like the looks and feel this stock. Definitely changes the appearance of the rifle.
It weighs about 6.5 ounces less than the laminated stock with two of the length of pull spacers in place.
 
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