Ruger American Ranch Rifle in 350 Legend Review ~ VIDEO

AmmoLand News and Jim Grant shoot and review the Ruger American Ranch Rifle in the 350 Legend caliber round.

U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- In many ways, 350 Legend is an odd caliber choice for a bolt-action rifle like the Ruger American Ranch Rifle. That’s because one of the two big driving factors behind the 350 Legend’s development was its compatibility with AR-15s. Despite this, the pairing of the lightweight, ultra-dependable Ruger bolt gun and the hard-hitting 350 Legend is a solid one – especially for hunting wild pigs and whitetail deer. But given the gun’s relatively high price when compared to AR-15s in the same caliber, it begs the question, “Is the Ruger Ranch rifle any good? And is it worth a buy?”

Ruger American Ranch Rifle in 350 Legend

If shooters aren’t familiar, the Ruger American Ranch Rifle is a magazine-fed, bolt-action rifle chambered in .223, 7.62x39mm, 450 Bushmaster, 6.5 Grendel, and 350 Legend. For this review, we’re concentrating on the 350 Legend model. In fact, I chose this caliber for three reasons: I wanted a lightweight deer rifle, the pandemic made getting any ammo expensive, and I had a good stack of 350 Legend ammo already on hand.

Ruger American Rifle 7.62x39
The Ruger American Rifle is also available in 7.62x39mm. IMG Jim Grant

I was very interested in the caliber when it was first announced because of some cool potential suppressor-friendly loadings like Winchester’s subsonic 255gr hunting rounds. Sure, I could just go with my tried and tested 300blk, but given the increased terminal ballistic efficacy of 350 Legend, I really wanted to try it out as a hunting round. Though truth be told, that never happened; I used my 300blk AR pistol for both deer I shot last season, and when attempting a stalk hunt with the Ruger American Ranch Rifle, I never saw a doe or buck worth taking.

Despite this, when I tested the Ruger rifle for accuracy and reliability, it performed exceptionally well and left me confident that if I could see a deer within 200 yards, I could easily take it.

Ruger American Ranch Rifle 350 Legend suppressed
The Ruger makes an excellent lightweight bush gun for hunting and stalking. IMG Jim Grant

One small issue I had with reliability stemmed from trying to work the action with a round in the chamber and a full magazine inserted. The extra friction and pressure caused by this combination would occasionally make chambering a round difficult. Other than that, the gun was flawless.

American Ranch Rifle Features

While the Ruger American Ranch Rifle is a fairly simplistic weapon – it is a bolt-action rifle, after all – it does have several noteworthy features. Starting at the muzzle, the American Ranch Rifle’s 16.38in barrel ships with its muzzle threaded to 1/2×28. Despite this, shooters shouldn’t utilize a standard .223/5.56mm muzzle device since the projectile diameter of 350 Legend is substantially larger than that of a 5.56mm bullet.

Ruger American Ranch Rifle Muzzle
The Ruger American Ranch Rifle is threaded to 1/2×28, but shooters shouldn’t use .223 muzzle devices on it. IMG Jim Grant

One really nice aspect of this feature is how it allows the Ruger to utilize a pistol caliber sound suppressor (if said suppressor states that it can support the pressure levels of 350 Legend) with subsonic rounds. In testing, my friend’s Innovative Arms 9mm Suppressor performed exceptionally well with the subsonic rounds. The manual action combined with the relatively long barrel and subsonic rounds made for an extremely quiet suppressor host.

Further back, the Ruger American Rifle incorporates a Picatinny rail on top of its receiver, making the gun very easy to mount a scope on – especially for AR shooters who already have compatible accessories.

Ruger American Ranch Rifle 350 Legend receiver
The Ruger American Ranch Rifle’s receiver features a built-in Picatinny rail for mounting optics. IMG Jim Grant

Below the optics rail, the Ruger uses a push-feed bolt-action with a 70-degree throw which is short enough to make quick follow-up shots possible. And further, behind this, the American Rifle features a tang safety designated with a red ‘F’ for fire and a black ‘S’ for safe. Both were easy to actuate in testing, with the bolt feeling smoother than most budget-friendly bolt-guns. As for the safety, it’s in the perfect location to toggle regardless of what optic a shooter mounts on their gun.

Below this, the Ruger American Rifle incorporates a magazine-well insert that functions similarly to that of an AR-15 since the magazines it utilizes are based on the AR’s STANAG mags. Meaning it features a push-button magazine release on the right side and the magazines are drop-free.

Ruger American Ranch Rifle 350 Legend suppressed
The Ruger is lightweight, soft-shooting, and fast-handling. IMG Jim Grant

One word of caution: although the magazines are heavily based on the AR-15’s magazines – and AR mags will fit into the magazine well – they won’t actually feed rounds properly due to a slight variance in dimensions. The good news is that ASC makes higher capacity magazines than the 5-round example included with the gun, in case you want a ‘load on Monday, shoot all week long’ experience.

Just below all this, the Ruger includes an adjustable trigger, which from the factory broke at about 4lbs – so very nice for a hunting rifle. Further back, the tan synthetic stock incorporates a rubberized recoil-absorbing buttpad, but it’s totally unnecessary since the gun has very little felt recoil.

Ruger American Ranch Rifle Verdict

Overall, with an MSRP of $659 (less $$ online), the Ruger American Ranch Rifle is a solid choice for shooters looking for a handy little hunting rifle or an inexpensive mid-range deer rifle. While it won’t replace the 300blk AR pistol in my collection for hog hunting, I still feel very confident with it when hunting whitetail deer here in South Carolina.

Buy Now Gun Deals

Products Seen in the Gun Review:


About Jim Grant

Jim is one of the elite editors for AmmoLand.com, who can wield a camera with expert finesse in addition to his mastery of prose. He loves anything and everything guns but holds firearms from the Cold War in a special place in his heart.

When he’s not reviewing guns or shooting for fun and competition, Jim can be found hiking and hunting with his wife, son, and their dog Peanut in the South Carolina low country.

Jim Grant

 

Subscribe
Notify of
2 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Nurph

People sleep on Ruger. They discount them solely because of their price point. I have “several” of their American line in “several” calibers. They ALL shoot lights out! That is why I will be purchasing “several” more! Thanks for the review.

EthelDavis

Like your review; it even made me think about purchasing some of the American line mentioned by Nurph.