The Ruger 10/22 is an extremely popular rimfire rifle produced by Sturm, Ruger & Co. Chambered for .22LR, this is a very capable and dependable rifle that can be used for anything from casual plinking to small game hunting to use as an SHTF survival weapon.
In continuous production since 1964, today there are many variants of the 10/22, including the Carbine, Compact, Tactical, Takedown, and the Sporter models.
And while any of these variants of the Ruger 10/22 will a great weapon out of the box for any situation where a .22 rifle would come in handy, there are times when you’ll want to upgrade your rifle’s components, including the receiver. The receiver is the housing that causes the 10/22 to operate properly, containing the trigger assembly, bolt, hammer, charging rod, and bore breach.
Precision receivers can improve your accuracy almost immediately. While Ruger has a stringent quality-assurance program, they still mass produce these guns. As such, their tolerances might not be as tight as you would want.
Best Overall Pick
BRN-22 Stripped Receiver
If you think you’ll need to do other upgrades later, there’s no better option than this receiver. It’s built to work with all kinds of upgrades including sights, barrels, triggers, stocks, and more. Manufacturers by one of the world’s most trusted brands, you just can’t go wrong with this receiver. While it may not be the cheapest, it checks off all the boxes for your needs and wants.
Best Budget Pick
Ruger 10/22 Receiver Parts Kit less Trigger
Keeping the price low and getting plenty of performance isn’t always easy, except when you buy this receiver. It’s made from hiqh-quality materials, designed to work with most Ruger 10/22’s, and it comes with all the essential parts you need to switch everything out, except for a trigger. For the price, this is a hard deal to pass up on.
Best Looking Pick
Tactical Solutions X-Ring 10/22 Receiver
While we believe in performance, we also like our rifles to look good. This receiver is built to perform and look good! It comes in one of five finishes, perfect for bolt-action rifles, and it is machined from high-quality aluminum. The price is affordable and it’s one of the best looking receivers we’ve seen yet (for 2020).
Since you’re looking for a new 10/22 receiver, you understand the importance of upgrading to high-quality components. Today, we’ll look at a few 10/22 receivers that scored top marks. We’ll go over why you want to upgrade, what to look for, and then highlight a few receivers we trust.
Why Upgrade Your 10/22 Ruger Receiver?
Sturm, Ruger & Co. has been around since 1949. Over the years, they’ve perfected their product line up, creating some of the most sought-after and trusted guns and rifles for all types of occasions (i.e. hunting, targeting, self-defense).
And while they’ve done a great job of creating some of the most accurate and well-performing guns, they still “mass produce” their guns. As such, there are some times when the gun you have might not perform as well as another gun produced on the same assembly line. It still performs well, just not the best that it can.
One of the most critical parts of your 10/22 rifle from Ruger is the receiver. This is where everything “basically” sits. And there are plenty of aftermarket receivers to choose from…
Starting out, most receiver upgrades fall into one of two categories:
While some will do it purely for aesthetic reasons (i.e. unique look, design), the majority of receiver upgrades are done to improve function and performance. For instance, the ability to add a rail for customizable accessories like scope rings, red dots, or holographic sights. Most aftermarket 10/22 receivers have Picatinny rails and universal rails to accommodate a plethora of rail-mounted accessories.
Other reasons why you might consider upgrading your 10/22 receiver include larger charging handles which can help in competition shooting and left/right-side orientation where you might need to have the rounds eject on the opposite side of the rifle (perfect for lefties).
Overall, the reason(s) to upgrade your Ruger 10/22 Receiver comes down to your own personal style and preference. We’ve done our best to put personal preferences aside and show you the three best receivers you can buy for your Ruger 10/22. Next up, we’ll discuss the factors you need to look at when trying to find the best receiver for your rifle.
Buyer’s Guide To Finding The Best Ruger 10/22 Receivers
These are the most important factors to consider when looking for a new receiver for your Ruger 10/22 rifle.
What the receiver is made of determines its quality. Made from a soft, corrosive material, the receiver will not last long – though it may look quite unique. Hand-rubbed outers can look amazing, but be very susceptible to corrosion very quickly. Most receivers are built from steel or aluminum, though they can be built from other metals and/or synthetics too.
The material type will directly affect the cost. Materials such as steel tend to be cheaper, though receivers made with steel tend to be heavier. Aluminum is a more costly material, but tends to be lighter and more easily damaged.
Since the type of material affects the way the receiver is built, this will factor into the cost as well. Steel is forged, aluminum is shaped – some are even built using CNC and 3D-modeling. Your material choice will affect your cost and your durability factors, so choose wisely.
The finish on your receiver can impact the look of your 10/22 dramatically. Some receivers come with a bland/minimal finish like stainless steel while others have a specialized finish like rubbed bronze. Some finishes are added to improve performance and durability from elements like water, dirt, and air (i.e. corrosion).
In some circles, there’s a belief that treated finishes can affect the effectiveness, accuracy, and overall performance of your rifle. They claim that the reaction between the chemicals and the metals decrease its strength. This is a conspiracy theory at best – just be aware that some purists hold this close to their vest like a proven fact (it has not been proven).
If you prefer a unique look, finding the perfect finish is important. If not, look for a receiver that matches your current look or the look of another rifle that you are satisfied with. Never settle for a finish that you aren’t totally sold on.
There’s nothing worse than buying an aftermarket product that works for a few days, weeks, or months and then breaks. In general, aftermarket products are expected to perform better and last longer than their OEM counterparts.
For reliability, you want to look at how often the receiver jams, how fast it fires, and if it affects the accuracy of your rifle. As for design, this is not noticeable so you’ll have to use reviews and reports from others to help with this. The brand you choose can directly impact this as a new company may not have worked out all the kinks yet.
No matter how good a receiver “looks”, don’t buy it if the reviews and reports claim a lot of problems and failures – you’re just asking for problems. If you want a rifle that performs, use top-tier, name-brand receivers with positive reviews (more than negative).
Some of the receivers you can choose from include extra features that aren’t exactly part of the receiver itself, but it can add extra value and make it easier for you to pick one over the other. With that in mind, some of the extras include:
- Picatinny Rails used for sights, scopes, and other accessories.
- Multiple sight mounts for a more universal fit.
- Recoil buffer to reduce recoil impact.
- Cleaning rod access holes.
- Attached barrel.
While these extras may not be your first priority, they can be the difference between a receiver that is good for your needs and one that is great! Think about what you need right now and what you might want in the future. If the receiver you like can handle all of your needs now and in the future, then that’s the one you want. Otherwise, you’ll end up forking over more cash later and having a spare receiver that’ll never get used.
And finally, you have to consider the price. There’s a meme running around the internet right now that says…
“Teach a child to shoot and he’ll never end up a drug addict … because he won’t be able to afford drugs”.
While it is comical, you’ve probably already experienced this in some form. Gun and rifle accessories are expensive. Making sure you pick the right accessories the first time can help offset some of those costs.
And while you might like it for a little while, you may find that it doesn’t meet all of your needs. Again, your cost will be affected by the material, the brand, the marketing, the durability, the warranty, the extras, and other factors.
Now, we don’t recommend buying the cheapest option (unless it is the best), nor do we suggest buying the most expensive option (unless it is the best; it fits your needs). What we recommend is doing your research (why you are here) and finding the best option for you (again, why you are here).
Ultimately, the best option for you is still going to cost you money. Just make sure it works for your needs and your budget and you’ll always be satisfied with the end result – a high-performance, beautiful receiver for your 10/22 Ruger Rifle.
Read also: Our article on the best Ruger 10/22 chassis.
The 3 Best Ruger 10/22 Receivers
Now, it’s time to dig into the best of the best. Here are the receivers we found to perform the best without breaking the bank. We love them and we’re sure you will too!
BRN-22 Stripped Receiver by Brownells
Brownells is a high-quality, proven brand with plenty of expertise in the gun and rifle industry. Over the years, they’ve perfected their production process and they outperform other companies in an apples-to-apples comparison. For those looking for a high-quality, 10/22 receiver, the search is over.
This stripped down receiver is an affordable option that works seamlessly with your Ruger 10/22 Rifle. While it may not have all the extras some of the other receivers have, it gives you the ability to build everything just like you want. Now, if you want a more one-stop option, this is not it – this is more for the aficionado that wants the best from every component.
Built from 6061 aluminum, this receiver is hard to beat – and it looks good! While aluminum is soft, it is highly machinable, making it easy to craft specialized parts faster with better precision. Plus, it provides an additional level of corrosion resistance, perfect for use in any environment. And, Brownells goes a step further with a specialized hard-coat protective finish to give you just a “bit more”.
Another notable feature is the cleaning rod hole at the rear of the receiver. Some receivers don’t have this feature, meaning you clean your bore and chamber improperly; the proper way if from the back.
And the feature we like the best is the mounting holes and specialized mounting rail for future-proof upgrades. Since you already love your Ruger, it would make sense that the mounting holes would line up perfectly – right? If that’s not enough, the Picatinny rail makes it possible to add on a plethora of upgrades that you wouldn’t have the option of otherwise.
Instead of being packed with a ton of unneeded extras, this receiver comes stripped down. This gives you the chance to build your receiver just like you want, choosing the internal parts you want without having to sacrifice price or performance. It’s built with super-tight tolerances to outperform the competition and provide unrivaled accuracy. The specialized mounting rail designed to work with Picatinny components makes this a future-proof investment that you can’t skip over.
- Specialized Hard-Coat Protective Finish
- Proprietary Barrel- V-Block System For Unparalleled Accuracy
- FFL License Required
Ruger 10/22 Receiver Parts Kit less Trigger
While other companies make high-quality aftermarket parts for the Ruger 10/22, we think Ruger might be the best option out there. They know their guns inside and out, with a level of detail no one else can (or will). As such, this receiver kit without trigger is absolutely perfect for those looking to make an upgrade.
This is not built for aesthetics, but rather for performance. All the parts inside are Ruger manufactured and they work well without breaking the bank. Of course, this kit comes without a trigger, giving you a “little” control over the final output of your rifle/receiver combo. Putting this together is simple as you only need a hex key, punch, and the kit.
Almost everything you need is included, except for the trigger; the parts list includes:
- Bolt Assembly
- Charging Handle and Spring
- Bolt Stop pin
- 2 Receiver Cross Pins
Don’t get stuck with aftermarket parts that might or might not work – stick with the brand that’s proven themselves for over 50 years.
For those looking to stay with the Ruger brand, this is a great stripped receiver option. It’s affordable, fully-customizable, and built using Ruger OEM components. While you can build a super-tactical, unique, one-off rifle from other aftermarket parts, there’s something to be said about sticking with the original.
This receiver keeps the original aesthetics of your 10/22 Ruger Rifle while allowing you to change or rebuild your 10/22 without changing the well-known look from Ruger. This receiver is perfect for rebuilds, restorations, or as a backup to your currently working receiver (as a backup).
- Very Affordable
- Manufactured With Original Ruger Parts
- Proven Track Record For Dependability And Durability
- Does Not Include Trigger Assembly
Tactical Solutions X-Ring 10/22 Takedown Receiver
For those who want the best in aftermarket receivers, it’s hard to ignore Tactical Solutions, LLC. And their latest 10/22 offering not only looks great, but it performs great too! Instead of sticking to the same designs as everyone else, Tactical Solutions decided to change it up – decreasing the weight and upping the aggressive factor to 100!
The most notable feature, aside from looks, is the lack of weight from this receiver. As with any backpacking rifle, weight is a BIG factor. Knowing this, Tactical Solutions built this from lightweight billet aluminum to cut down on the overall weight, managing to whittle it down to an outstanding 16 ounces in the final design.
Next, the look is hyper-aggressive, instantly changing the look of any rifle you put this in. The specialized finishes, combined with the aggressive cutouts, make this a unique, one-off upgrade that you’ll love. Plus, they didn’t leave out other innovative features sure as a heat-treated steel bolt for trouble-free shooting or a pass-through rear slot.
If you aren’t stuck in a brand-only mindset, then the Tactical Solutions X-Ring 10/22 Takedown Receiver might be perfect for you. It’s not designed to look the same, or work the same. Instead, it stands out like a sore thumb – in a good way. It comes in multiple finishes including Black, Gun Metal Gray, O.D. Green, Quicksand, and Silver for a truly customized look. The special grooves and cutouts add to the performance and look, while it manages to cut down the weight tremendously. At only 16 ounces, this is one of the lightest and most durable options for your 10/22.
While it isn’t cheap, it’s worth every penny. If you want to upgrade your 10/22 the right way, this is the best aftermarket option for your money.
- Comes In Multiple Finishes
- Looks Super-Aggressive For A Unique, One-Off Look
- Reduces Overall Weight While Increasing Accuracy And Performance
- Fairly Expensive
- Requires FFL License
Well, that’s everything we can think of regarding the best receivers for your 10/22 Ruger rifle.
While the 10/22 Ruger is a well-built gun, there are some upgrades such as the receiver that can improve your accuracy and make it a more enjoyable gun. The three receivers we listed above fared the best when compared to other receivers, giving a great return on your investment and performing the best overall.
If you want the best performance for your 10/22 Ruger, then you cannot afford to skip over one of these three receivers.