Mossberg Patriot VS Ruger American

Many of us owe Savage Arms a big debt of gratitude for introducing budget hunting rifles to the world. After all, with the economy in shambles and struggling to recover, hunting was a luxury that seemed to be slipping further and further away. Until Savage Arms came to the rescue, that is. Ever since then, many companies have followed suit and are now producing great rifles that are a fraction of the cost of premium rifles. Two of the best economy rifles on the market right now are the Ruger American and the Mossberg Patriot.

And as always, there can only be one king of the hill, so which one is the better of the 2? Which one comes out tops in the Mossberg Patriot vs Ruger American shoot out? That’s our main agenda today, so put your feet up and settle into your favorite couch with your favorite beverage or snack in hand and brace yourself for an exciting time.

man shooting with his rifle

Mossberg Patriot VS Ruger American – Excellent Firepower on a Budget

When it comes to budget rifles, there are a few things that they all have in common. For one, they are all affordable, that one is obvious. The other similarities include the materials used, most use synthetic materials in their construction and plastic replaces steel where ever possible so as to cut costs. And for this reason, some snub such rifles as unreliable. But that couldn’t be further than the truth. True, they may not perform to the level of premium rifles, but they perform extremely well and are also very durable due to the advancements in plastics and synthetics technology.

So as we delve into the Mossberg Patriot vs Ruger American debate, don’t look at these powerful weapons as substandard disposable rifles that won’t take you far. On the contrary, these are excellent rifles that you will actually enjoy so much you will have a hard time parting from the one you pick.

Let’s look at these rifles and see which will ultimately emerge as the best budget rifle for you.

The Mossberg Patriot VS Ruger American Debate – Let the Shoot-Out Begin

Right, now that we have prepared the groundwork and leveled the playing field, let’s get on with our gun fight. Expect some fireworks too. A quick look at these two fine feats of engineering as individuals is in order before we pit them against each other though, so here goes.

The Mossberg Patriot – A Glance at One of the Best Looking Budget Hunting Rifles

When it comes to budget rifles, one of the major areas that manufacturers like to cut costs in is the aesthetic beauty department. And because of that, most budget rifles look bland and lack that wow factor. Not so with the Mossberg Patriot. When it comes to comparing budget hunting rifles, if one was to select one on looks alone, the Mossberg would outsell all its other competitors.

Mossberg patriot

Apart from its beautiful looks, the Mossberg Patriot has a few useful tricks up its sleeve (or is it barrel?) For instance, the Patriot features Mossberg’s unique Lightning Bolt-Action (LBA) trigger which is, in all honesty, is one of the best features on this rifle. The Mossberg LBA trigger is adjustable to between 2-7 pounds, breaks evenly and crisply, and plays a big role in enhancing the accuracy of this rifle. Apart from the superb trigger, the Mossberg Patriot also comes with an awesome, fluted 22-inch barrel, making it one amazing rifle you will enjoy shooting.

The Mossberg Patriot comes in 11 calibers ranging from .22-250 to .375 Ruger giving you a very wide selection to choose from. As for pricing, the Mossberg Patriot ranges from $386.00 for the synthetic stock version, to $584.00 for the wood laminate model with Marinecote metal finish. Very affordable, if you ask me, especially considering that it will last you a long time, and not to mention the potential of bagging an unlimited number of elk or deer in those years.

Apart from price, beauty, and the fun factor, the Mossberg Patriot is a great low maintenance hunting rifle that you can easily maintain by yourself. This is one rifle that should be at the top of your list, budget or not, because it certainly is an exceptional piece of work.

But remember, it’s not alone in the race today. This is a Mossberg Patriot vs Ruger American shootout, and one of them has to come out the winner. So, let’s check out the Ruger, shall we?

The Ruger American – An Overview of One of the Best Equipped Hunting Rifles

When Ruger made the American, they had one thing in mind bringing the joys of hunting to the masses. To do that, they made a very remarkable hunting rifle you can find on many of the high-end hunting rifles that cost an arm and a leg. For me, this is one of the reasons that sway me toward the Ruger, but again, that’s just me.

ruger american

Apart from being well equipped, the Ruger American is a well-built hunting rifle that boasts of a three lug bolt system, 18-inch barrel, and a very easy to use safety thumb that can be disengaged when you have a bead on your target. This is one hunting rifle that is extremely to use, even if you are a novice. In fact, for beginners, I would recommend this rifle as it is not only affordable and easy to use but it is also very easy to maintain. Taking it apart and putting it together is child’s play. Really, it is.

One surprising thing about the Ruger American is that for a lightweight rifle (it weighs approximately 6lbs unloaded) it has little-felt recoil. This is mainly due to the rubber butt pad that Ruger cleverly used on the synthetic stock to reduce the otherwise powerful recoil that you would feel without it.

When it comes to design, function, ease of use, and price, the Ruger American is one fine specimen of an economy rifle. Especially since it comes in a number of calibers such as .223, .243, .22-250, 7mm-08, and .308, making it a great all-purpose rifle for most of your hunting. But that being said, how does it fair against its competitor in the opposite corner? Well, we’ll just have to put them head to head in order to find out. And that’s exactly what we are going to be doing now.

Mossberg Patriot VS Ruger American – Price Shoot-Out

Obviously, when looking at budget rifles, the most important thing is – budget. So how do these 2 rifles compare in the price department? Let’s check them out.

As I already mentioned, the Mossberg Patriot comes in the price range of $386.00 - $584.00 depending on the version you get. The Ruger American? You can get yourself a good Ruger American from $375.00 - $529.00. But price isn’t everything, especially when it comes to a hunting rifle, so which rifle delivers more bang for your buck? I wish I could give you the answer straight away, but that would defeat the whole purpose of the showdown. Let’s tear these two apart and see what they are really worth, and which one will be worthy of being included in your collection.


Design and Build Quality

In all honesty, most budget rifles have average or less than average build quality. But when it comes to the Mossberg Patriot and the Ruger American, these budget rifles offer more than the others when it comes to design and build quality. But each has its own advantages over the other in this department. Aside from the normal design and build qualities these rifles have, we will look at those that make them unique.

ruger bolt

Image via: ruger

One of the Ruger American’s biggest advantage over the Mossberg Patriot is the bolt system. Instead of the conventional two opposed locking lugs, as on the Mossberg, the Ruger American has a one-piece bolt with three lugs oriented on 120-degree centers. This makes loading a whole lot easier as this system only requires a 70-degree handle lift, as opposed to the 90-degrees needed by the 2-lug bolt system. And because of the dual cocking cams, the effort required to cycle the action is greatly reduced. Point for Ruger.

But the Mossberg Patriot also has a few tricks that give it an advantage over the Ruger American. For one, the Mossberg has an excellent, lightweight, indestructible, detachable magazine. It’s a one-piece magazine molded from a tough polymer and has integral feed lips. The advantage? It’s an easy to load magazine that can actually make a big difference on the hunting field. Add to this the LBA trigger and the Patriot becomes an easier and more accurate rifle to use, especially with its 22-inch barrel as compared the American’s 18-inch one. A point for the Mossberg Patriot.

Both of these rifles are exceptionally built for durability, functionality, and ease of use. Oh, and not forgetting the big “A”, accuracy.


Performance and Accuracy

When it comes to hunting rifles, it all boils down to one thing – performance and accuracy. Oh, is that two? Anyway, the Mossberg Patriot vs Ruger American shootout comes down to this critical segment. Because of their differences in trigger systems, barrel length, bolt system, and a few other factors (such as the Mossberg Patriot weighing a little more than the Ruger American), these two rifles end up performing differently.

Ruger accessory

Image via: ruger

Despite coming in 11 calibers, more than most budget rifles, sadly, the Mossberg Patriot has to concede defeat to the Ruger American when it comes to performance and accuracy – especially accuracy. Sure the Mossberg Patriot looks good on the outside, but when it comes to the internals, the Ruger American looks better. The main problems with the Mossberg Patriot are the less rigid receiver and less accurate machining as compared to the Ruger American.

Shot for shot, the Ruger American is superior to the Mossberg Patriot. But, if looks are more your thing and you’d rather practice more to compensate for the slight inaccuracy that comes with the Mossberg, then go ahead and get the Mossberg Patriot.

man hunting in the forest

Mossberg Patriot VS Ruger American – Last Gun Standing

After all the smoke has cleared and all the noise has died down, taking a look at the Mossberg Patriot vs Ruger American debate through unbiased eyes, the evidence clearly points to one winner – the Ruger American. This is the hunting rifle I would recommend you go with, and I know you won’t regret the choice.

Now that we’ve settled that once and for all, I guess it’s time you get off your comfy couch and get yourself a hunting rifle and do what you love best – hunting. But be sure to take a few moments to break in your rifle for better performance. I guess I’ll see you at the range as I break in my Ruger American.

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