Before: The original magazine release on a 1960's production 10/22.
There's no arguing the joys of owning the Ruger 10/22. Chances are you learned to shoot with one, own one, or know someone who owns one. There's also a good chance that after a day of shooting you've had a pain in your thumb from using the original magazine release. The original release works well enough with factory magazines, but longer high capacity (no more than 15 rounds for NJ residents) or aftermarket mags can be difficult to change. Changing mags with the original release is also a slow, deliberate process not well suited to certain environments and situations. The solution to all these issues is an extended magazine release. Extended magazine releases have been around for a while, and they are so popular that, on certain models, Ruger started installing them at the factory a few years back.
ProMag Extended Release
If you have an older 10/22 with the original release, you can easily upgrade to the extended version in 5 minutes with a few tools. You'll need a flat head screw driver, a good set of punches, and the extended magazine release. We used one from ProMag because it's long, metal, and reasonably priced.
This pins holds the release in place.
Perform your safety check, and disassemble the rifle as you would for normal cleaning. Once you've removed the trigger group, use a 3/32 punch to tap out the pin holding the magazine release in place. This will require more force than removing the take down pins but should not be difficult. Next, press the magazine latch (also called the magazine plunger) and pull down on the magazine release to remove it. Take note of the release's direction. Before installing the extended release, test fit the pin to make sure there are no burs that will prevent easy installation. Press the magazine latch and slide the extended release into place. Use your 3/32 punch to make sure the parts all line up, and tap the pin back into position. Check to make sure the release moves and resets well, and reassemble the rifle.
After: The ProMag Extended Release installed.
Once installed, you will notice the extended magazine release is similar to "paddle" type releases like those found on the M14, M1A, Mini 14 and 30, various HK's and clones, and AK variants. Pushing the paddle forward releases the mag, and it can be done quickly with a fresh mag in the same hand to facilitate faster reloads. It works equally well for left and right handed users, and allows the magazine to drop free from the rifle. Most importantly, you can save your sore thumbs for loading all those magazines!
Here in NJ, civilians generally don't have collapsible stocks on their AR-type rifles. Because of New Jersey's "assault weapons ban," shooters must not exceed a certain number of features to maintain compliance with the law: conspicuous pistol grip, flash hider, bayonet lug, detachable magazine, collapsible stock, etc. Most of us keep the pistol grip and the detachable magazine. It doesn't seem like a big deal until you try to run a single point sling- there's no proper place to mount a sling swivel on a fixed stock. TROY Industries has an interesting solution. The M16A4 Sling Mount Adapter comes with the adapter, a quick release swivel, buffer tube spacer, and a buffer tube/stock screw.
Installation: Simply remove the top screw from your fixed stock and slide the stock off. Slide the adapter over the buffer tube all the way to the receiver, being careful not to damage the small detent spring. Place the included buffer tube spacer on the end of the buffer tube with the original spacer- don't remove the old one. Slide the stock back into place and use the new screw to secure it in position. Tighten the screw fully, and you're done!
You now have ambidextrous sling mounts directly behind the receiver, perfect for utilizing a single point sling. Larger shooters will be pleased to note that the adapter adds about 1/4 inch to the length of the stock.
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