Ruger SR-556, Opinions??

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Offered one of these on trade, reviews seem pretty good for them. What should I look for, or look OUT for? What can I expect for a reasonable resale value? It is the SR556 standard model, not the carbine or "E" model. Retail shows $1995 so I would expect around $1500 new is about the going rate? Has 5 mags and 600rds of ammo with it plus all original goodies. Not too many that have been for sale on here.

Thanks for any info.
John
 
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There is some debate as to whether Ruger has solved the bolt carrier tilt issue that tends to develop in some of them.

There are discussions about this on the AR and Ruger forums.
 
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On sale for a month through Davidson's for just over $1,500.

Cartier tilt is one of those things, TYPICALLY the folks that coo over rifles talk about.
Had a LWRC with the "issue", and have seen a Ruger with it. Never seen it do anymore than wear down the buffer tube.

Personally I see it as typical wear for the system. Machines wear out with use, if you don't want to/can't afford the maintenance; get a different machine, or don't use them.
Buffer tubes are cheap and quick to swap out.

$0.02
 

WAYNO

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I wrote this three years ago, and since then, I continue to say my SR-556 is my favorite rifle in this platform...

[WAYNO]A little background, first. One of my MOS's in the Army was small arms repair. That means I repaired every gun and mortar the Army owned, from bore diameter 4.2" and smaller. By a huge margin, I repaired more M-16's than any other firearm. The gas system was very fragile, and I learned to not trust AR's very much. Still don't.

After a lot of years, I recently bought a new Bushmaster M-4. Gave me such fits, right out of the box that Bushmaster had me return the gun to them. They replaced the barrel, and it's been perfect ever since. This gun shoots better than any AR I've ever shot or owned, previously.

Then, along comes along the Ruger SR556. I bought one, and I've gotta say, as much as I've learned to like my Bushmaster, I like the piston-Ruger even more. It runs perfectly, and is unbelievably accurate. The action remains clean, and the gun runs so much cooler. But, this gun is hefty. Maybe hefty is part of why this gun shoots so well.

So, is there an absolute need for a piston-AR? Maybe not. But I sure do like mine.

So, the OP's question is a little two-edged.
Is the piston a worthwhile improvement? Yes.
Is it worth the huge increase in cost? Probably not.

Regarding price...The cost of the Ruger has come down quite a bit. I paid $1400 for mine, just a few months ago, and had I waited, I've seen them for $1300. Maybe the price will continue to come down.

WAYNO.[WAYNO]
 
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WAYNO. Being a retires service tech[mechanic] I realize that no one knows a piece of equipments weak points than those who work on them on a regular basis. Could you tell us about what breaks when and what are the parts that wear out. Thanks!!!
 

WAYNO

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Ya know, the extractor failed often, as well as routine pins and springs, but they were easy fixes, many of what could be repaired by a unit armorer or even by the soldier. But as simple as these repairs might be, the rifle was out of service until repairs could be made. In a fire fight, this was rather inconvenient. And in my opinion, they failed way too often for a battle rifle.

What concerned me was the number of failures of the gas tube. Where the gas tube enters the receiver, it would get so severely mashed and mangled, and would take the weapon out of a fight. We didn't even know what caused so many failures at this point of the gas system. And even this was a straight-forward repair, but not in the field. The weapon would have to be returned to DS or GS for repair.

And although most civilians will never fire full-auto, I know from too much experience that during automatic fire, with the operating gases being dumped directly into the receiver, the carbon builds up severely, interfering with clearances. And once this carbon is baked into place, it takes a lot of elbow grease and solvents to get rid of it.

Now, as a civilian and firing only semi-auto AR's, I have the luxury of cleaning my AR's before the buildup impinges the operation of the weapon. But in a piston AR, there is almost zero buildup of crud in the receiver.

WAYNO.


WAYNO. Being a retires service tech[mechanic] I realize that no one knows a piece of equipments weak points than those who work on them on a regular basis. Could you tell us about what breaks when and what are the parts that wear out. Thanks!!!
 
Last edited:
OP
J
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Thanks for the info, I will be trying to make the trade work today. I will update on the performance if I get it. I did call a LGS down here in Eugene and they had one on the shelf for $1450 out the door.
 
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On sale for a month through Davidson's for just over $1,500.

Cartier tilt is one of those things, TYPICALLY the folks that coo over rifles talk about.
Had a LWRC with the "issue", and have seen a Ruger with it. Never seen it do anymore than wear down the buffer tube.

Personally I see it as typical wear for the system. Machines wear out with use, if you don't want to/can't afford the maintenance; get a different machine, or don't use them.
Buffer tubes are cheap and quick to swap out.

$0.02

Hmmm....I've never owned an AR of any kind, I had kind of dismissed it as an option because of what I had read about them, but it sounds like they are a really great gun with the proper maintenance regimen.
 

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