In recent years a number of U.S gun companies have been building firearms that are more affordable, but just as effective. The average shooter, faced with the prospect of forking out around $500 to have his old hunting rifle rebarreled, has the option of buying an entirely new bolt gun for the same price or even a bit less. Up until now his choice lay between such bottom-end guns as the Savage Edge, Marlin XL-7, and Mossberg ATR, but now there’s a new boy on the block – the Ruger American – which follows the same trend.
In all honesty, some of these “el cheapos”, with the exception of the Marlin XL-7 have ugly bulky stocks, creepy triggers and give indifferent accuracy. Makers reply to buyer’s criticisms by saying “Well it’s made to a price and not a standard, so whaddya expect”?
Ruger has never enjoyed the reputation for being a high-end gun maker, but is famous for producing good serviceable guns that don’t cost an arm and a leg. Obviously, the decision to produce a lower-end gun wasn’t an easy one for Ruger, but they knew that they had little choice if they wanted to remain competitive. However, the company set out to build a better mousetrap and the American ended up being a practical no-frills design with no features that could be faulted. The American is a a brand-new bolt-action sporter that weighs only 6.25 lbs, has an easily adjustable trigger, shoots one-and-a-half-minute groups with standard factory ammo and sells for less than half what the M77 Hawkeye costs.