Best Ruger 10/22 Charging Handles

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Are you currently looking for the best charging handles for a Ruger 10/22 carbine? Well, you’re in luck because I made a list of the best Ruger10/22 charging handles I could get my hands on.

You probably already know, but for the newbies, the charging handle is the part of the 10/22 that you use to clear jams, clear the action, or manually chamber a new round. It’s an integral part of a firearm and something you will need to buy if you’re building a new Ruger 10/22 from the ground up. Alternatively, if you plan on upgrading your existing 10/22, a new charging handle can make for a solid improvement.

In this guide, we will dive into the merits of the Ruger 10/22 as a platform, how to install a new charging handle in your 10/22 carbine, the top qualities to look for in a 10/22 charging handle, and then my choice for the top best Ruger 10/22 charging handles from this list. You can always jump straight to the individual reviews.

But first, here’s a summary table of the best Ruger 10/22 charging handles:

Top Pick
GGD Smooth Ruger 1022 10-22 Extended Charging Handle in Steel
  • Has an oversized handle
  • Straightforward to install
  • Made of durable CNC-machined aluminum and steel
  • Might require some fitting
$38 Shop NowClick to read my review
Ruger Factory Charging Handle Replacement
  • Smooth and durable
  • Fully compatible with other factory components
  • Affordable price
  • Nothing special beyond what you already get from the factory
$9 Shop NowClick to read my review
Volquartsen Ruger 10/22 Extended Bolt Handle
  • Coated with a nice silver finish that reduces friction
  • Easy to grasp thanks to the extended design
  • Drop-in design does not require specialized tools or a gunsmith
  • Expensive
$45 Shop NowClick to read my review

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Why Go With The Ruger 10/22?

The Ruger 10/22 is one of the most popular firearms with civilians in the U.S. today. It’s also an affordable and very rugged .22 caliber semi-automatic rifle. The 10/22 is n excellent rifle to have in your arsenal because of the fact that it fulfills numerous roles. For instance, you can use a .22 LR rifle for casual target shooting, plinking, small game hunting, homestead use, pest control, and even tactical use if you needed it to. Additionally, the 10/22 is designed to be more durable and reliable than most other .22 rifles.

The .22 ammunition is small and lightweight. You can store lots of ammunition in a very small amount of space. Furthermore, it creates less noise than most centerfire rifle rounds. Therefore, you are less likely to disturb your neighbors when practicing shooting on your property.

The 10/22 is arguably the ultimate survival rifle. If you had to flee out into the woods in an SHTF situation, you can use it to hunt small game to help stay alive, or you could use it to engage hostile forces as a tactical weapon. Extended 15, 25, and 35 round magazines are routinely available for the 10/22, which offers you a significant amount of firepower.

Also, the 10/22 is one of the most customizable firearms on the planet. It’s even possible to build an entirely new 10/22 from scratch based on parts that you can buy online. Regardless of whether you want to modify your existing stock 10/22 or build a new one from the ground up, one of the most critical upgrades that you can make is swapping out the factory stock charging handle for a new one that’s easier to grasp onto. This will make chambering a new round or clearing a jam much easier and faster.


How To Install A Charging Handle Into A Ruger 10/22

Replacing your charging handle on the Ruger 10/22 should be an overall simple and straightforward process, and does not require the aid of tools or a gunsmith in order to do.

Just follow these steps:

  1. Remove the magazine from your 10/22
  2. Pull the charging handle you have on the rifle to the rear to confirm it is empty
  3. Ensure there is no ammunition in the immediate area
  4. Push out the retaining pins to remove the Ruger 10/22 trigger housing from the rifle (you’ll need to get the appropriate punch for this)
  5. Locate the pin in the back of the 10/22 receiver, and punch it out
  6. Turn the receiver upside down
  7. Push the bolt and recoil rod assembly out from the receiver
  8. Take this opportunity to remove any dirt, grime, or debris from the receiver (spray it with gun oil and then wipe down thoroughly with a cleaning rag)
  9. Now drop in the new bolt handle and recoil rod assembly into the receiver
  10. Make sure that the back of the recoil rod is held in place in the notch in the rear of the receiver
  11. Pull the bolt handle back so that the bolt can drop into the notches along the handle
  12. Reinstall the trigger housing assembly and push the pin back into the rear of the receiver
  13. Secure the trigger housing assembly with the two retaining pins
  14. Mount the barreled receiver to the stock if they had been separated prior

And that’s it! Overall replacing the charging handle in your 10/22 is a very simple process. If you are still confused by the process because of your unfamiliarity with the intricacies of the 10/22 platform, you can check out tutorial videos online for a visual demonstration.


Buyer’s Guide For The Best Ruger 10/22 Charging Handles

These are the most important factors to consider when looking for a new charging handle for your 10/22 rifle:

Drop-In Design

Contrary to what some users may think, you should not have to go to a gunsmith or use specialized tools in order to install your new charging handle. A drop-in design means that the old charging handle can be removed and the new one installed by you easily. Just follow the step-by-step process for replacing the charging handles like I have described above.

Ergonomics

The whole reason you are replacing your charging handle in the first place is because you do not particularly find your existing charging handle to be ergonomic, right? That’s why you need to make sure that your new charging handle represents a major upgrade in this department.

The stock charging handle for a 10/22 works (after all, it’s been used since the early 1960s) but it’s also very basic. Most aftermarket charging handles are meant to be more ergonomic because of their longer length and also because of their grip. For instance, some charging handles will have a longer curved shape to them so they are easier to grasp onto, whether it be to chamber a new round or to clear a jam.

Of course, there are many different kinds of shapes available, which you will soon see when you conduct further research. Some charging handles have a curved design, others have a latched design, also have more of a hook shape, and so on.

Smoother Action

Again, the charging handle on a 10/22 standard from the factory works, but it could be better. Many third party charging handles are designed to function more smoothly, meaning that less force should be required in order to draw the charging handle to the rear. It also means that you should encounter less physical resistance when drawing the charging handle back to the rear as well.

Ambidextrous Design

Finally, and this won’t apply to you if you’re a right handed shooter, but if you’re left handed you would most likely want to have an ambidextrous charging handle. An ambidextrous charging handle has a separate handle on the left side of the 10/22, even though the action of the rifle is on the right side.

Read also: Our other guide on parts such as the the best Ruger 10/22 chassis as well as the best barrels for these rifles.


The Best Ruger 10/22 Charging Handles For 2020

Now that we’ve covered why you need to upgrade the charging handle for your Ruger 10/22, here are our individual choices for the top three best Ruger 10/22 charging handles for 2020:

GGD Smooth Ruger 1022 10-22 Extended Charging Handle in Steel

Best Ruger 10/22 Charging Handles GGD Smooth Ruger 1022 10-22 Extended Charging Handle in Steel

Gun Gear Depot’s oversized Ruger 10/22 charging handle is an excellent replacement for your factory 10/22 handle. Its larger size gives you plenty of room and easy grabbing whenever you charge and clear the chamber. You don’t need to visit a gunsmith to install it. It’s straightforward to use and can also be an excellent backup handle for your rifle.

This charging handle is built of durable CNC- machined aluminum and sturdy steel, equipped with an anodized black rod and precision spring.

Pros
  • Has an oversized handle
  • Straightforward to install
  • Made of durable CNC-machined aluminum and steel
  • Has a black anodized finish
  • Affordable price
Cons
  • Might require some fitting

Ruger Factory Charging Handle Replacement

Best Ruger 10/22 Charging Handles Ruger Factory Charging Handle Replacement

If you simply want a Ruger factory made charging handle replacement for your 10/22, then this the option that you need. Take note that this is not the same charging handle that come standard on the 10/22 that you bought off the dealer shelf. Even though this charging handle is built by the Ruger factory as well, it’s meant to be both more durable and more smooth than the standard charging handle that comes on your carbine.

This charging handle looks very similar to the existing handle that is likely already on your 10/22, so it’s not going to seem very special in terms of its appearance.

The Ruger Factory Charging Handle Replacement is a solid choice for a 10/22 charging handle. Even though it visually looks nearly identical to the existing charging handle you have on your stock 10/22, this handle is more durable and more smooth in its operation. You’ll notice a big difference right away when you use the rifle. And as an added bonus, it’s affordable for a charging handle replacement.

The Ruger Factory Charging Handle Replacement is a solid choice for a 10/22 charging handle. Even though it visually looks nearly identical to the existing charging handle you have on your stock 10/22, this handle is more durable and more smooth in its operation. You’ll notice a big difference right away when you use the rifle. And as an added bonus, it’s affordable for a charging handle replacement.

Pros
  • Fully compatible with other factory components
  • More smooth and durable from the standard factory charging handle
  • Comes at ana ffordable price
Cons
  • Nothing special beyond what you already get from the factory

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Volquartsen Ruger 10/22 Extended Bolt Handle

Volquartsen Ruger 1022 Extended Bolt Handle

The Volquartsen Ruger 10/22 Extended Bolt Handle is one of the most durable 10/22 charging handles on the market today. It’s built out of very durable carbon steel with a hardened polished finish. This finish is designed to reduce friction and fouling. It’s very durable, rust and corrosion resistant, stable, and does not require a gunsmith or specialized tools thanks to its drop-in design.

Meanwhile, the recoil rod spring of this charging handle is also built out of carbon steel and has been cryogenically treated to extend its service life and improve stability when charging the weapon.

Measuring a quarter of an inch longer than the stock factory 10/22 charging handle, the Volquartsen will be very easy to grasp onto in order to charge the weapon or clear a jam. The drop-in design means that it does not require a gunsmith or specialized tools in order to install.

It’s built out of high quality carbon with a proprietary polished finish, along with a cryogenically treated rod to ensure stability when charging the weapon. Measuring a quarter of an inch longer than the standard factory charging handle, it will be very easy to grasp onto in order to operate. The Volquartsen may be expensive for a charging handle overall, but you also get what you pay for.

Pros
  • Built out of durable carbon steel
  • Coated with a nice silver finish that reduces friction
  • Recoil rod spring has been cryogenically treated
  • Easy to grasp thanks to the extended design
  • Has a hardened polished finish
  • Drop-in design does not require specialized tools or a gunsmith
Cons
  • Very expensive for a 10/22 charging handle

Wrap Up

Any one of these charging handles will be an excellent choice for your 10/22 and help make clearing jams or chambering new rounds a breeze. Alternatively, you can follow our buyer’s guide section that I described before to help you find another suitable 10/22 charging handle as well. But if you want my opinion, I’d choose the GGD Smooth Ruger 1022 10-22 Extended Charging Handle in Steel. It’s very affordable for its durable build and outstanding features. I also think it’s better than the factory charging handle and more budget-friendly compare to the Volquartsen.

What’s your favorite Ruger 10/22 charging handle on this list? Let me know in the comments below!

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