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First Look: Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle .223 Rem. / 5.56 NATO

by Shooting Times Online Editors   |  September 8th, 2014 27

Ruger_gunsite_scout_rifle_556_FBack in 2011, Ruger unveiled its Gunsite Scout Rifle (GSR) in honor of the Arizona training facility founded by Jeff Cooper in 1979 (Gunsite Academy). Chambered in .308 Win., the original Ruger GSR was the formal rendition of Cooper’s 1984 “Scout Rifle Idea,” published in Gun Digest.

Ruger’s modern interpretation of Cooper’s bolt-rifle concept has now evolved to chamber the .223 Rem./5.56 NATO cartridge.

Largely similar to the Ruger GSR .308, the new 5.56 NATO version falls in the M77 family and uses several Mauser-style features such as a claw extractor, controlled round feed, receiver-mounted ejector and three-position safety. Other familiar features include an integral recoil lug and a stainless steel, one-piece bolt and handle. The rifle feeds from an Accurate-Mag detachable box magazine holding 10 rounds of .223/5.56 with a Mini-14-style mag release lever in front of the trigger guard.

RELATED: Ruger GSR .308 Win. Review

“Ruger Gunsite Scout” laser engraving on the 4140 steel receiver pairs with “5.56 NATO 1-8″ on a 16.1-inch, medium-profile, hammer-forged steel barrel. A flash-hider with 1/2″-28 thread pattern comes on the 1:8-inch-twist barrel with six-groove rifling. The receiver and barrel sit in a black laminate stock with grip checkering and sling swivel studs on the forend and buttstock. Length of pull is adjustable from 12 3/4 to 14 1/2 inches with a removable rubber buttpad, making the overall length between 37 and 38 1/2 inches. The rifle will be available with black-matte or stainless steel finish options for each right- and left-hand configuration.

The GSR 5.56 also includes Mini-14-style iron sights, integral mounts for the (included) Ruger scope rings, and a 6-inch Picatinny rail for mounting a long-eye-relief scout scope suggested by Cooper.

Although Cooper’s original “Scout Rifle Idea” was chambered in .308 Win., the GSR 5.56 is a solid general-purpose rifle that closely meets Cooper’s ideology. Look for more on the Ruger GSR in an upcoming issue of Shooting Times Magazine.

The Ruger Gunsite Rifle in .223 Rem./5.56 NATO is available now at the following retail prices: matte black (L/R hand) $1,039; stainless steel (L/R hand) $1,099.

Check out more photos and specs below:

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