Arguing is a great American pastime, and these days, people seem to be more committed to it than ever before. So lets take a time out and talk about something that’s not controversial: The Ruger Red Label.
From the moment the Red Label was introduced in 1977 to when it was finally put to rest in 2016, people have had strong opinions about this over-under shotgun. Lovers liked how it was American made. Haters disliked its heavy weight, sloppy wood-to-metal fit and non-existent quality control.
The Red Label was first made in 12 and 20 gauge. These are these models earned the gun its reputation for being a heavy, cumbersome pig. But in 1994, Ruger introduced their 28 gauge version of this shotgun. It proved to be the one that got just about everything right.
If people are still collecting shotguns in 2114, one double I’m sure they’ll be call an American classic is the 28 gauge Ruger Red Label over under.
Ruger introduced their Red Label shotguns in 1977 and offered them until 2011 (and they’re introducing a modified version this year, btw). First available as 20 gauges and then 12s, the Red Labels were decent guns. In most of the shops I visited as a kid, they were the most expensive shotguns on the racks, right up there with the Belgian Browning Superposed and the Beretta 686s.
One-hundred percent American made, Red Labels tended to be heavy, and the fit and finish on a lot of them was not good. But the 28 gauge Ruger Red Labels were different – like a single, gorgeous pup in a litter of malformed runts. These Red Labels were lightweight and sleek. If you could find a good one, they were beautiful upland guns.
And it looks like the one you see here might be a good one. It’s on Gunbroker.com now and the listing end on 1/21/2014 5:15:24 PM ET. So if you like what you see, step up and get it. The price looks very fair.
28 gauge Ruger Red Label over under, 28″ bbls: VR barrel…boxlock, SST, auto ejectors, checkered English straight grip stock, stainless steel frame…Comes with the original box, manual, choke wrench and all 5 choke tubes…Gun is mint/hard to even tell if it has been fired/Like New.
Ruger Red Label O/Us were THE double barrel shotguns to have when I was a kid. Quality guns, American made, reasonable prices, they had a lot going for them.
A friend of mine’s father had one and I remember admiring it through the glass of the family gun cabinet, wondering what it would feel like in my hands (we were absolutely forbidden to take it out).
Looking at this little 20g Ruger Red Label, remind me of what I liked about that O/U. Even Ruger Red Labels were pretty unadorned and no nonsense, they were still good looking guns. With it’s straight-gripped stock, this 20 gauge is look trim and sleek, just like a great upland shotgun should. And with it’s 28″ bbls, I bet its a pleasure to shoulder, swing and shoot.