SOLD FOR: $2125
Make: Sturm, Ruger & Co.
Model: Red Label (Model #04131)
Serial Number: 411-15726
Year of Manufacture: 1997
Caliber: 12, chambered for 3” Shells
Action Type: Top Lever, Break Action Over/Under Shotgun with Ejectors
Markings: The top receiver tang is marked with the serial number, “411-15726”. The underside of the receiver is marked “STURM, RUGER & CO., INC. / SOUTHPORT, CONN. U.S.A. / —U.S.A—”. The left side barrel flat is marked with “12 GA. 3” CHAMBERS” and a proof mark. The mono block is serial matching, hand-scribed “15726”. The underside of the forend wood and the grip cap is marked with an inset gold Ruger phoenix medallion. The buttpad is marked with a Ruger phoenix logo.
Barrel Length: 26” with Vented Barrel Rib and Mid-Rib
Choke: Both barrels are threaded. Included chokes are as follows: Improved Cylinder, Modified, Full, and 2x Skeet. Improved Cylinder and Modified are currently installed.
Sights/Optics: There is a beaded brass blade fixed to the front of the barrel rib. The top of the rib is serrated to reduce glare.
Weight: 7lb 10.6oz
Stock Configuration and Condition: The stocks are two-piece wood with checkered straight pistol-grip and forend, fluted straight comb, and a black rubber buttpad. The forend has a few minor shallow nicks and compressions. The left side of the grip has some very minor marks in the checkering. The buttstock has scattered light nicks and compressions, primarily on the belly and the left side near the grip. The checkering is well defined. There are no chips or cracks. The drop at comb is 1 1/2”, the drop at heel is 2 1/4”. The cast is slightly on. The LOP measures 14 1/4” from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttpad. The buttpad is free of any notable wear or damage. Overall, the stocks are in Fine-plus condition.
Type of Finish: Blued Barrel Assembly with Stainless Steel Receiver and Forend Iron
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: Both bores are bright and there is no erosion; the lower barrel has a bit more visible fouling than the top.
Overall Condition: This shotgun retains about 98% of its metal finish. There are just a few very minor nicks scattered about the metal. Stainless steel surfaces are free of wear. Controls and pins are unmarred. All markings are clear. Overall, this shotgun is in Fine-to-Excellent condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The lock up is tight with no play. Please note, there is a fair bit of play in the vented rib. We have not fired this shotgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your standards.
Box, Paperwork, and Accessories: This Red Label includes its original serial-matching factory box along with the interchangeable chokes mentioned above.
Our Assessment: Over/Under shotguns were a distinct improvement of traditional side by side double guns, especially in terms of overall accuracy. At the time Ruger was bringing their Red Label to market, over/under double guns were effectively luxury items, out of reach of the average American consumer. Bill Ruger proceeded to do what Bill Ruger always did: saw the need of the market and filled it, investing serious time and money and doing it all in-house. Ruger filled the need not just with a comparable product, but one that defied expectations and created real value for the buyer. At the time of their release Red Label shotguns cost $480.00—$2,132.24 in 2021 and $3,478.12 in early 2022, a positively dreadful, painful reminder just how much value the US dollar has lost recently—and put in the hands of Joe Average a rather fine over/under double gun. Interestingly, what gave rise to the Red Label shotgun is ultimately what would lead to its fall: stiff competition. Only this time the competition came from a bevy of manufacturers in multiple countries, and it’s common wisdom that a war cannot be won on two fronts, let alone many. After a brief return in 2013 that saw Ruger attempt to simplify the design and manufacturing process, Ruger quietly removed Red Label double guns from its roster. This example is from 1997 and is in overall Fine-to-Excellent condition with very minor wear. The bores are in great shape, the lock up is solid, and mechanics are sound. Of note is the included box—a Red label is rare enough, but one with its box is even more so. Good luck and happy bidding!