The Ruger Hawkeye in 308 Win

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  • The Ruger Hawkeye in 308 Win

    I would like to share some of my experiences with this rifle in 308 Winchester and hopefully, there are others that can give some advice on the problems that I have encountered. I have had this rifle for about four years and have only fired two boxes of factory ammunition so far. I haven't used the Hawkeye in the field as yet but have fired a box of 150 gr and a box of 165gr so far all at the range. All targets were set up at 50 meters and the results of the testing have not been all that good the 165gr seemed to be better but the groups were quite large at about 2''. The Ruger Hawkeye has a very thin field barrel that is no doubt a bit whippy this isn't too much of a concern to me as in a hunting situation the kill zone is 5 to 6 inches in size so at 50 metres this will do quite nicely on medium game. I would like to improve the accuracy of this rifle but I have no experience in tuning so as it is I am limited to very close range hunting the 308 Win has all the potential to deliver a kill shot out to 230 metres with great accuracy if all is well so should I consider floating the barrel or is it better to leave the barrel in contact with the fore end of the stock. Ruger seems to favour barrel and stock contact maybe this is due to the fact that this rifle is purpose made for hunting rather than target shooting but don't we all want the best accuracy from our firearms. So as it is at this time I will not be very satisfied unless I can close the group down to at least 1/2 inch groups at 50 metres. Thanks for your time reading this and I hope anyone can have some possible positive input that I can consider. Click image for larger version

Name:	Ruger Hawkeye 308 Win.JPG
Views:	97
Size:	30.9 KB
ID:	323912

  • #2
    I have a MKII which I love but also has major accuracy problems. When the barreled action is in the stock it rocks like a rocking horse. I have free floated the barrel but it did not make much of an improvement. It is now my believe that it needs to be fully bedded. Once we are "freed again" just before election time I may take it to a gunsmith to get it properly bedded. I also have installed a Timney trigger which I like very much. It appears that with Rugers it's the luck of the draw.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Just Shooting View Post
      I would like to share some of my experiences with this rifle in 308 Winchester and hopefully, there are others that can give some advice on the problems that I have encountered. I have had this rifle for about four years and have only fired two boxes of factory ammunition so far. I haven't used the Hawkeye in the field as yet but have fired a box of 150 gr and a box of 165gr so far all at the range. All targets were set up at 50 meters and the results of the testing have not been all that good the 165gr seemed to be better but the groups were quite large at about 2''. The Ruger Hawkeye has a very thin field barrel that is no doubt a bit whippy this isn't too much of a concern to me as in a hunting situation the kill zone is 5 to 6 inches in size so at 50 metres this will do quite nicely on medium game. I would like to improve the accuracy of this rifle but I have no experience in tuning so as it is I am limited to very close range hunting the 308 Win has all the potential to deliver a kill shot out to 230 metres with great accuracy if all is well so should I consider floating the barrel or is it better to leave the barrel in contact with the fore end of the stock. Ruger seems to favour barrel and stock contact maybe this is due to the fact that this rifle is purpose made for hunting rather than target shooting but don't we all want the best accuracy from our firearms. So as it is at this time I will not be very satisfied unless I can close the group down to at least 1/2 inch groups at 50 metres. Thanks for your time reading this and I hope anyone can have some possible positive input that I can consider. Click image for larger version

Name:	Ruger Hawkeye 308 Win.JPG
Views:	97
Size:	30.9 KB
ID:	323912
      js i have had a ruger or two in 308 and both were outstanding once the barrell was floated and the very easy to work on trigger was lightened off ,be aware the rifle may not be the only problem as the 308 demands reasonable quality optics , anyway you know where to start .. good luck..cheers..pd.

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      • #4
        Mate the Ruger factory specs state the barrel is free floated already.!! .
        You can check if the barrel is floated by trying to pass a piece of paper down the barrel between the fore-end & the barrel. Most guys use a paper currency note ( 5-$10)
        There is some concern if, as you say the barrel is touching the fore-end & this may be part of your problem.
        Not hard to slip the action & barrel out of the stock & look for any smooth area where barrel is hitting stock.
        How tight are the screws holding the fore-end on to rifle, what are the torque specs for these screws? Are these screws to loose, or too tight ??-- just another factor to consider.
        Once you have stock separated from barrel & action It is then a simple matter of lightly sanding down the inside of the fore end & get it to a point where with the rifle assembled you can freely pass a piece of paper down between barrel & fore end.
        That is the first thing I would try & it is a very simple test to confirm if barrel is actually floated.
        Give it a go, will cost you nothing & may improve your groups.
        Also how clean is your barrel & how often do you give it a clean. You say you have only fired two boxes of bullets but it still would not hurt to give the barrel a clean--you never know!!
        Hope the above has helped you.
        Cheers.
        Faster Horses
        Younger Women
        Older Whiskey
        More Money

        SSAA N52

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        • #5
          In addition to above Ruger has a video on their website showing installation of action/barrel back into stock.
          Ruger recommends torque settings as follows--- 95lbson front screw & around 30lbs on each of the two rear screws.
          Ruger says tighten down front screw first then do the middle screw & rear screw last.
          So when putting stock back on tighten all 3 screws down a bit over finger tight the tighten front, then middle & then rear to recommended torque settings.
          Faster Horses
          Younger Women
          Older Whiskey
          More Money

          SSAA N52

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          • #6
            Thank you, Mr Carbine, Pd, and Sprint-GTO for your feedback. I think the bedding is a good practice if the barrel is free floated and I will do this soon. I failed to mention in my post that I did remove a small amount of wood from the channel at the end of the fore end and removed the side play from the receiver in the stock using a number of small pieces of electrical tape to provide a snug fit this is just a cheap way of bedding at that point I could slide about the thickness of tree banknotes down the full length of the barrel. It was mentioned that good optics are vital and I most definitely agree with that as the scope I have on the rifle is a rather cheap Tasco and it may well be a problem I think I will invest in a good quality fixed power 4x35 And the advice of tensioning the screws is something that I have paid particular attention to as I am a bit of a heavy handed person at the best of times so the action is fitted probably with a little more tension than is specified. Thank again for all of the advice and I will post on this subject again after I do the proper bedding fit a better scope and make sure the barrel is in free flote with good bolt tensioning. PS the rifle is brand new.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Just Shooting View Post
              Thank you, Mr Carbine, Pd, and Sprint-GTO for your feedback. I think the bedding is a good practice if the barrel is free floated and I will do this soon. I failed to mention in my post that I did remove a small amount of wood from the channel at the end of the fore end and removed the side play from the receiver in the stock using a number of small pieces of electrical tape to provide a snug fit this is just a cheap way of bedding at that point I could slide about the thickness of tree banknotes down the full length of the barrel. It was mentioned that good optics are vital and I most definitely agree with that as the scope I have on the rifle is a rather cheap Tasco and it may well be a problem I think I will invest in a good quality fixed power 4x35 And the advice of tensioning the screws is something that I have paid particular attention to as I am a bit of a heavy handed person at the best of times so the action is fitted probably with a little more tension than is specified. Thank again for all of the advice and I will post on this subject again after I do the proper bedding fit a better scope and make sure the barrel is in free flote with good bolt tensioning. PS the rifle is brand new.
              mate you are shooting yourself in the foot by fitting a 4x35 scope on a 308 , all of mine have been fitted with reasonable quality 3-9x40 optics .as in leupold vx1 3-9x40 etc. i thought that looked like a tasco...do not take offence but your scope is a starting point , bin that piece of shit and start with your optics. most cheap guns will still shoot with good optics not even the best gun will shoot with shit optics , harsh words but a lesson most of us learnt the hard way...cheers..pd.

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              • #8
                I agree with PD re the scope,good glass is essential dont mess around with rubbish.
                Faster Horses
                Younger Women
                Older Whiskey
                More Money

                SSAA N52

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by pd View Post

                  mate you are shooting yourself in the foot by fitting a 4x35 scope on a 308 , all of mine have been fitted with reasonable quality 3-9x40 optics .as in leupold vx1 3-9x40 etc. i thought that looked like a tasco...do not take offence but your scope is a starting point , bin that piece of shit and start with your optics. most cheap guns will still shoot with good optics not even the best gun will shoot with shit optics , harsh words but a lesson most of us learnt the hard way...cheers..pd.
                  Thanks, pd I must agree the scope that I have fitted may well be a big part of the problem I need to open my wallet and get something far more appropriate for this rifle thanks again. 40 mm objective is better for low light conditions and I will consider that factor.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SPRINT-GTO View Post
                    I agree with PD re the scope,good glass is essential dont mess around with rubbish.
                    Thanks, SPRINT-GTO I have been a bit of a tight ass and need to come to the party I really look forward to getting good glass and getting the best from this rifle I think the recoil of the 308 is too much for a cheap scope like a Tasco.

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                    • #11
                      A 4x fixed scope is plenty for most hunting.
                      I use them without apologies. A 3-9× is also good but it weighs more and you always on the wrong power when it's time to take a shot.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MrCarbine View Post
                        A 4x fixed scope is plenty for most hunting.
                        I use them without apologies. A 3-9× is also good but it weighs more and you always on the wrong power when it's time to take a shot.
                        not a problem i have ever had , and lets be honest they dont weigh that much MrC......pd.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by MrCarbine View Post
                          A 4x fixed scope is plenty for most hunting.
                          I use them without apologies. A 3-9× is also good but it weighs more and you always on the wrong power when it's time to take a shot.
                          I always thought that simple is better. A set power scope has less chance of optics shifting and are a little cheaper in price due to fewer components plus as you say lighter for hunting.

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                          • pd
                            pd commented
                            Editing a comment
                            bloody flintstones, a wooden spear is simpler again......pd.

                        • #14
                          There are so many 3-9 variables out there, it would be cheaper than finding a decent fixed power.

                          I just check my 4-12 is on 4 power at home before I pack.
                          I hunt in forests with more thick stuff than clearings so don't zoom unless the shot presents.

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                          • #15
                            Just Shooting No offence intended but (a) have you recently focussed the scope for your eyesight whilst pointing it up at the sky?; and (b) have you checked it for parallax? Also, do you dry fire your rifle before shooting?
                            There are two reasons for dry firing. Firstly: to get yourself properly in sync with the rifle, i.e. in a comfortable, secure position with no muscular tension, smoothly operating the action, consistently pressing the trigger and following through; and Secondly: to get the trigger working smoothly after being inactive for a while. Ross Seyfried wrote an excellent article for Rifle Magazine on that trigger aspect, probably twenty years back.
                            I ran a club range complex for 14 years, with the help of others and I can confidently assert that you need to have all these basics right if you want to get a decent result in that (less than a second) time period between the trigger press and the bullet impact.
                            Keeping the caffeine levels down until after your sight-in and accuracy testing is another good practice.
                            A good shot at close range beats a 'hit' at a longer range.

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                            • Just Shooting
                              Just Shooting commented
                              Editing a comment
                              Good A ZG47 thank you for your post I have got the cross hair in focus to my eyesight but there is no parallax correction adjustment on the scope but the objective housing can be adjusted to a set distance I have set mine to 100m so any movement or miss alignment is stable at that range I always try to keep the scope well centred to my eye at any range to limit the shift of parallax error. Thank for the advice on keeping the nerves steady your quite right about the coffee and the grog the night before can be a hindrance as well. I will try the trigger work as you mentioned that sounds like a good idea I will let you know if I have any improvements in the future.
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