Gun Review: Accuracy Test – Ruger 10/22 Takedown

There’s been plenty written about the Ruger 10/22 Takedown since its March 2012 release. I was intrigued to discover that I couldn’t easily find a review that put more than 10 rounds through the rifle, breaking it down and reassembling it after each shot. So, I sought to put 30 rounds in this manner to see if the Takedown really would return to zero like Ruger puts in their advertising.

I took a brand new out of the box Ruger 10/22 Takedown (Model 10/22-TDT), and Winchester 36 grain hollow point copper plated rounds out for the test. I had considered using a scope, but I really wanted to literally take the rifle out of the box and just start shooting. Also, many Takedown fans have this rifle in their bug out bag, and it got me thinking that in survival mode I’m not sure I would want a scope that could eventually break, as well as add weight. But I digress.

Shooter's perspective with the Ruger 10/22 Takedown. Note the author's high-tech rifle rest.

Shooter’s perspective with the Ruger 10/22 Takedown. Note the author’s high-tech rifle rest.

My first three sighting rounds at 50 yards were a 2 inch group.


They were hitting low right, and I wanted to test myself by just working with what I had and not adjusting the sights. I taped up the target and started my 30 shot string by doing the following for every single shot:

  1. Assembled the rifle
  2. Loaded one round in the 10 round magazine (I used the same magazine for the whole test) and inserted it into the rifle
  3. Dropped the bolt, flipped the safety off
  4. Fired one round
  5. Flipped the safety on, took out the magazine, opened the bolt, broke the rifle down
  6. Reassembled the rifle, and went back to Step #2

I walked down range after 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 rounds. You can see the progression of me walking it in, along with a few flyers here and there.

Collage 10-25

30 rounds

30 rounds, all accounted for.

Pleased, but not satisfied with what I saw, I decided to throw another 20 rounds down range, taking the rifle down and reassembling after each shot.

50 total rounds. I believe a few went through and through in the last 20 shots.

50 total rounds. I believe a few went through and through in the last 20 shots.

After putting 50 rounds downrange in the aforementioned manner and seeing them all hit paper, I have to say that I think the Takedown is capable of holding zero after reassembly. What would be interesting is to perform this test again with a Takedown that has a few thousand rounds put through it and more wear and tear from the takedown/reassembly process. That’ll be another review though for another time — for now, I’ll be adding the Ruger 10/22 Takedown to my bug out bag.

Chris Cheng is History Channel’s Top Shot Season 4 champion. A self-taught amateur turned pro through his Top Shot win, Cheng very much still considers himself an amateur who parachuted into this new career. He is a professional marksman for Bass Pro Shops who shares his thoughts and experiences from the perspective of a newbie to the shooting community.

Chris Cheng

Chris Cheng is History Channel’s Top Shot Season 4 champion and author of “Shoot to Win,” a book for beginning shooters. A self-taught amateur turned pro through his Top Shot win, Cheng very much still considers himself an amateur who parachuted into this new career.

He is a professional marksman for Bass Pro Shops who shares his thoughts and experiences from the perspective of a newbie to the shooting community. He resides in San Francisco, CA and works in Silicon Valley.


  • Steve (TFB Editor)

    I wanted one of these before reading this review, now I NEED one 🙂

    I have been using my SBR (12″ barrel) 10/22 as a pseudo take down. I remove the action from the stock (1 bolt) and put stock and action in a backpack. But this official Takedown saves even more space than my pseudo take down.

    I was considering a Marlin Papoose, a favorite of many gun bloggers, but I love the Ruger 10/22 platform. I like nothing more than tinkering with it, trying new aftermarket components, springs etc.

    • Can I have one boss?

      • Steve (TFB Editor)


    • The AR-7 also makes a very fine little backpack rifle (& it floats!):

      • Not too many Great reviews out there for the AR-7. Albeit a Henry not the greatest Takedown/Survival Option. Only from what I’ve read, Haven’t had the chance to test one out though.

        • Geo

          I have had some problems with the AR-7 I bought used, but Henry has stellar customer service. I bought mine used and they have sent me a new gun every time I send it back for service. Plus I get a few extra mags ever time I return it.

  • iomegaboy

    Thanks for the review. I bought one of these 6 months ago and love it.

    • Good to hear. It’s hard to beat any 10-22!

      • Heath

        Hard to beat them, even even harder to find ammo for it.

        • iomegaboy

          I haven’t seen a round of 22LR in any of my local shops in 4 months now.

    • iomegaboy

      I’ve modified mine with a Tactical Solutions Under-Trigger Guard Mag Release (no more accidentally releasing the mag when trying to lock the bolt), an auto-bolt release (absolutely required $10 mod on any 10/22), a tactical weaver mount, a cheap Simmons scope, a machined aluminum barrel-band replacement with a sling slot and two weaver mounts for a flashlight and a polymer bolt bumper. These guns are fun to mod.

  • CowardlyHero

    I would have been surprised if the barrel mounted iron sights lost zero, but would be interested to see this test repeated with some form of receiver mounted optic/red dot or techsights.

  • trevor

    I bought a 10/22 Takedown back in November and I have had much fun with it at the range since then.

    Since the iron sights are both on the front half of the rifle, their alignment with the barrel would not change based on taking it down or putting it back together (unless you banged them on something during takedown or reassembly). The thing that would change is the alignment of the barrel in relation to an optic mounted on the rear half.

    If the taking-down of the rifle has an effect, it seems like it would be on the optic first.

    I just got a scope for mine and have only had the chance to shoot it once. I didn’t think to take it down and the see if it was still zeroed when I was at the range either. I’ll find out if it has held its zero next time though.

    • A. Nony Mouse

      Another thing that might change is if you fitted the rifle with TechSights (for the BOB types who want something better than the stock irons, but don’t want a scope.)

      Since they’re fitted to the rear of the receiver, the alignment might change.

      • brucelanc

        I know I’m replying to a 6 month old post… If you are interested in something like the techsights but better for this particular application, Skinner Sights makes a peep exclusively for the 10/22 TD and the 10/22 TDT. The rear sight mounts in the rear barrel dove tail and is on a bar that reaches back towards the butt of the rifle. I can’t quite describe it, so you might have to visit their website to look at the pictures.

  • Anonymous

    Brilliant idea, running a consistency test on something that’s not a variable in the equation (barrel-mounted iron sights). I’m not certain if the 10 MOA “grouping” is more damning of the rifle or the shooter, but I’d have a very hard time bragging about those results as being indicative of an accurate rifle.

    • MattInTheCouv

      I think that since you can see a picture at 10/15/20/25/30, and a picture with 3 sight-in rounds to know what this particular shooter/rifle combo’s spread is without disassembly, the stated point of the article was well served. I agree it would also be beneficial to duplicate the test with a shooting rest and scope, but accuracy wasn’t the tested characteristic here, repeatability was.

      • decoy

        But if accuracy was not the tested characteristic, better change the headline then?
        ”Accuracy Test: Ruger 10/22 Takedown”

  • ed

    This doesnt say much until you compare the results with 30 rds w/o taking down the rifle.

  • Both sights are on the barrel, so I would expect them to stay aligned with the barrel. The real test is to do it with a scope. Mine has a low power scope and when it is assembled/reassembled, the point of impact will move slightly. With a properly adjusted lockup mechanism, I can expect groups to form within 2″ of where I’m aiming at 25 yards. It won’t return precisely to zero, but it’s close enough to hunt any small game.

    The AR-7 doesn’t have both iron sights attached to the barrel, so I suspect that it won’t return to zero nearly as well.

  • Alec

    Don’t Ruger’s assembly instructions require an additional step between your step 1 and 2? I thought they specified dropping the bolt on an empty chamber a couple times after assembly to insure everything was seated before you loaded and started firing. That could change your test results…

    • They do in fact say to do this. I have had nothing bud stellar accuracy from my 10/22 TD

  • I think the test speaks for itself. I love my 10/22 although it is not the takedown. It would be interesting to note how your test gun shoots after 5,000-10,000 rounds using the same parameters.

  • CharlieHotel

    Being that the chamber is in the barrel part of the rifle and both the front and rear sights are as well. I’m not sure why anybody would think breaking it down would change the zero. I suppose the headspace could vary slightly.


  • rimfire17

    would love to get 1 but where can u buy ammo for it,cant find any anywhere.

  • Alaskan Rick

    Using the iron sights, how could it change? Both front and rear sights are on the barrel. I own one of these and love it. I just don’t see the point of your test. If using a scope that would test the take down returning to zero but the iron sights can’t change.

    • MattInTheCouv

      the relation ship of the ‘front half’ to the ‘back half’ clearly could have an effect on things. headspace probably matters very little in a 22lr compared to higher power rifle rounds, but surely it still does matter somewhat.

  • coyotekiller1984

    oh man I love my ruger! I don’t have the takedown but I just got a brand new stainless steel barreled, grey birch wooden stock ruger 10/22 for Christmas and loved it every since! it’ll last for years to come!

    • Criticalthinkingiscritical

      My 37 year old 10/22 see’s as much action (or more) than any other firearm I have. I’ve loved it since the day I bought it (6 years ago).

      You’re brand new one should last generations with proper care. Enjoy it!

      • bloodaxe

        I bought mine in 1979 for $100. I don’t know how many thousands of rounds I’ve put through it but it’s a lot. It has a Kimber heavy match barrel, a Hogue rubber over-molded stock and a Nikon 6X scope and it will put 50 rounds into a 1″ circle at 50 yds from a rest and at 100 yards it’ll shoot 50 rounds into less than 2″ which is pretty darn good for any .22. That rifle has riddled many a beer can and sent several unlucky ground squirrels to the promised land. I gave it to my son. He likes it a lot.

  • Guest

    Try better ammo like Wolf Match Target

  • Guest

    Try better ammo like Wolf Match Target.

  • Try better ammo. These groups are pretty pathetic for rested shooting.

    • LeRoy Jenkins

      Says the guy who didn’t win Top Shot.

  • tincankilla

    I found the same thing with mine, but with big variation based on the ammo:

    I’ve since outfitted mine with at low profile rail so I can see the iron sights (gotta glue it down, I learned), plus a quick release scope. Anyone know of good aftermarket stocks specific to the 10-22 TD? For example, I’d like to use the stock end for storage or maybe get a monte carlo style.

    • Cymond

      The only aftermarket stock I know of for the TD is a folding design from AGP Arms. There was a guy modding wood stocks on Rimfire Central, but he quit because it was so much work and one person complained about an unattractive inlet for the takedown switch. Maybe you can find him and figure out how he did it?

  • AccShooter

    Chris — Come down to SoCal and shoot with us. We’ll put a rimfire in your hands that will shoot 0.2″ groups at 50 yards, not 2.0″ groups. And we have a rest that’s a bit more upscale than the old rubber tire. Lookie here:

  • Spartacus

    It is getting easier to find 22 ammo, soon limits should be recovered.
    If only Ruger would get caught up on orders, instead of trying to develop new products. More than 7 weeks waiting for a mark III magazine, really?

  • Smiddywesson

    Excellent review.
    However, before questions of accuracy come into play, I’d say weight and size are the prime considerations, otherwise we wouldn’t be looking at either of these weapons.
    The Marlin Papoose is obviously smaller, but more importantly at 52 oz., whereas the 10/22 takedown is 75 oz, the Marlin is a lot lighter. That’s a difference of 27 oz., which is more than half the weight or an additional sidearm like the Ruger Mark III (42 oz). Where the rubber meets the road is rations, 27 ounces equates to, for example, 3660 calories of Datrex survival bars. That’s 3 days of rations if you are just sitting, and two days if you are walking. That’s a lot of food. I’m going to have to miss a lot for your Ruger to make up for 3 days rations.
    It comes down to selecting the best tool for the job. If I’m humping it through the woods, I’ll stay with my Marlin and settle for its accuracy, which I find more than adequate. If it’s going in a plane or under the truck seat, hands down, I’d select the Ruger 10/22 takedown.

  • Dan

    I like all the experts here who are not shooting professionally but are able to provide advice outside of the scope of the article, or intended objective. There is nothing wrong with providing additional information, that is great, but why the need to put down every article and writer who shares their experience? ,
    BTW I think my favorite rifle is currently the Ruger Takedown 10/22 by Ruger. I think if Chris C. would have fired the chrome finish TD like I have, instead of an all black rifle, his results would have more accurately have reflected mine, which are always perfect!