Ruger SR-762 Rifle Review
Part 6 - Range Test
March 11, 2014

Ruger SR-762 Review

In this part of my Ruger SR-762 Review, I range test this AR-10 styled piston driven 7.62x51 / .308 WIN rifle.  Since the rifle comes with a set of quality flip-up sights, my first order of business was to ensure these sights were zeroed before I switched to my other sighting systems.

 

I shifted the front sight to the forward most position on the rail to maximize sighting radius.  I then flipped the rear sight and installed it backwards so that the sight folded forward when stowed.

Figure 1
Ruger SR-762 Review

This rear sight orientation is non standard, but due to how the peep stows on the sight, mounting with the sight folding rearward would cause the ocular housing to interfere with the sight when my scope was installed using the Nikon M-308 mount.  Flipping the sight allowed me the ability to maintain a comfortable head position and cheek weld based on the eye relief of the scope.

Figure 2
Ruger SR-762 Review

I setup my range testing to get some chronograph data with targets at 25 and 100 yards as shown below.  I used some inexpensive German 7.62x51mm 147gr ammunition for shooting all my 25 yard initial zeros on my various sight systems.  At about $0.40 per round, this ammo got the job done at a value price and the SR-762 cycled these rounds without issue with the gas regulator set at "2".  The iron sights zeroed without issue, but I was a little surprised with how far I had to adjust the rear sight to the right.  The alignment of the rails and barrel looked good so I started  wondering how much of that adjustment may be due to distortion when looking through the peep out of the corner of my eye glasses.  I verified and tweaked the iron sight zero at 100 yards and was comfortable with the zero.  One thing I immediately noticed was how soft the SR-762 seemed to shoot.  The semi-auto action does a good job of taking the edge off the recoil.  I was a little concerned that the simple ridged M4 style buttstock may prove to be hard on my shoulder when shooting the .308 Win ammunition, but recoil was never an issue throughout all my range testing of this rifle.

Figure 3
Ruger SR-762 Review

Next I wanted to shoot the SR-762 with the new Burris AR-FFL Laser & FastFire combination sight.  Reviewing this sight system on this rifle gave me the opportunity to put more rounds down range with the SR-762 and play around shooting at some steel targets.  I switched to some Hornady Steel Match 155gr BTHP ammunition to see how the SR-762 would cycle with another type of ammunition.  The first time I loaded a full magazine with 20 rounds of ammunition, I did have a couple of failure to feed issues.  When I switched the gas port setting to "3", the failure to feed issues vanished with this type of ammunition. Once I complete my Burris AR-FFL review, I will add a link here.

Figure 4
Ruger SR-762 Review

The following video was taken while I was evaluating the Burris sight on the Ruger SR-762.

Video 1

For my final sight configuration and the one which I used to gather my accuracy data, I mounted the Nikon M-308 Riflescope as shown below.  Once I complete my Nikon M-308 review, I will add a link here.

Figure 5
Ruger SR-762 Review

I also switched from using a bipod to using my Caldwell Rock BR rest to try and remove as much human error as possible from my bench shooting.  I shot several different types of Hornady ammunition to try and get a feel for how the rifle may perform with different loads.

Figure 6
Ruger SR-762 Review

The first type of ammunition I used was the Hornady Steel Match 155gr BTHP ammunition.  The SR-762 seemed to perform well with an average group size of 1.64" at 100 yards using this type of ammunition and my best 5-shot group of the day of 1.08".

Figure 7 - 1.08" 5-shot group @ 100 yards
with Hornady Steel Match 155gr BTHP ammunition
Ruger SR-762 Review

Next I shot the Hornady Custom Lite Reduced Recoil 125gr SST ammunition.  Even with the gas regulator set on "3", I still had to cycle the action for each round to prevent the rifle from having feeding issues.  Clearly the SR-762 needed some greater power rounds to cycle the action and I'm curious to see if over time the magazine springs and recoil spring will soften slightly to allow softer shooting ammunition to function, although, I don't consider this to be a big deal.  I seldom shoot ammunition lower than 147gr bullets with my .308 Win rifles and have become a fan of the 168gr BTHP ammunition for this caliber.

As I just mentioned, I'm a fan of the Hornady 168gr BTHP ammunition and the SR-762 did not disappoint me.  My group average for this ammunition was 1.49" with a max of 1.59" and a min of 1.35".

The last type of ammunition I used during my accuracy tests was some Hornady 155gr A-Max ammunition.  The rifle delivered a four group average of 1.85" which I don't think was too bad.  Note that this type of ammunition is not intended for use in semi-automatic firearms, but since I had it, I decided to give it a try.  There were no feeding issues using these A-Max bullets.

The table below summarizes my range test data for the Ruger SR-762 rifle.  Keep in mind that the measured velocity is less than the listed velocity due to the shorter 16.2" barrel length on this rifle.

  Velocity1 (ft/sec) 5-shot Group Size2
Ammunition Listed Measured Std Dev. Max Min Avg
German 147gr 7.62x51mm - 2551 40 - - -
Hornady Custom Lite Reduced Recoil .308 Win 125gr SST (#80866) 2675 2313 27 2.62 1.84 2.23
Hornady 155gr Match .308 Win 155gr A-Max (#8095PM) 2860 2604 25 2.15 1.61 1.85
Hornady Steel Match 155gr BTHP 2610 2412 46 2.08 1.08 1.64
Hornady Match .308 Win 168gr BTHP (#8097) 2700 2504 16 1.59 1.35 1.49
Hand Load: 9.2gr Clays, 168gr BTHP, Fed GM210M, COL 2.800" - 1120 42 - - -
Average of all 5-shot groups = 1.74
1 - Velocity based on 13+ shots through a chronograph placed 10 feet from the muzzle
2 - Group Size based on four 5-shot group shot from a bench at 100 yards

For my accuracy testing, I had an overall 5-shot group average of 1.74" at 100 yards for the Ruger SR-762.  These results compare nicely with the December 2013 issue of "Guns & Ammo" magazine where the author had a total group average of 1.82" for six different types of ammunition and he was using a 3.5x power scope.  My guess is that the "Guns & Ammo" results would have been better if the author used a 16x scope for his tests.  In my honest opinion, I feel that a lighter trigger pull could improve on the accuracy.  An 8.65 pound trigger pull is in no way what I would consider to be ideal for bench shooting, but even at this pull weight, the SR-762 showed it has true accuracy potential.


SR-762 and Sound Suppressor

Since the SR-762 rifle comes with a gas regulator setting of "0" so that the rifle can function like a single shot, I wanted to do some evaluations using a sound suppressor.  I removed the flash suppressor and installed my C-3 Defense 300 BLK suppressor since this suppressor is basically a .30 caliber suppressor rated for subsonic loads.  I'm in the process of developing my own subsonic .308 Win loads and had a batch that I thought might work well with the shorter 16.12" barrel.  After range testing, I found the velocity data on this batch to be a little too fast and needed to back off the load slightly.  The load data is shown in the table above.

Figure 8
Ruger SR-762 Review

Shooting the near subsonic loads would not cycle the action even with the gas regulator set to it's maximum setting (3).  The video below shows the details of the subsonic portion of my range test.

Video 2


Post Range Test Condition

I put about 160 rounds through the SR-762 and the photos below show the condition of some components.  The bolt carrier group was relatively clean which you would expect from a piston rifle.  The front of the bolt was a little dirty and I suspect this may have had more to do with me using a suppressor than normal operation.

Figure 9
Ruger SR-762 Review

This photo shows the rear of the barrel extension and transfer rod area.  Overall these areas looked very clean.

Figure 10
Ruger SR-762 Review

The case deflector did its job and you can see where the cases impacted the deflector.

Figure 11
Ruger SR-762 Review

The gas regulator and pistol didn't look too bad.

Figure 12
Ruger SR-762 Review

 

Thoughts

When I completed my range testing, my first thought was when will I be able to shoot it again.  The rifle was enjoyable to shoot and seemed to be reliable and has some real accuracy potential.  Since I'm using the SR-762 to review the Nikon M-308 scope, I plan to do some longer range shooting in the future.  Clearly the SR-762 has all the accuracy needed to make a great battle rifle.  If I were to try and squeeze the maximum accuracy potential out of this rifle, I would consider an aftermarket trigger.  I found the reliability to be good provided I shot with the gas regulator on the maximum setting and am curious to see if the rifle will break-in over time and allow for a lower regulator setting in the future.

For more detailed photos and commentary, make sure you check out the other parts of this review and feel free to leave comments on my Reader's Comments page.  The following links are provided to help you see other parts of this review. 


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