How to Find 22LR Ammo

This is 2,900 newly purchased rounds of .22LR ammo. It might last me a month.

This is 2,900 newly-purchased rounds of .22LR ammo. It might last me a month.

This is a real, un-doctored photo, taken just this morning. This ammo was purchased Wednesday evening. Really. And I could have bought more.

Yes, .22LR ammunition is a lot more scarce than it used to be, especially those bulk packs of Winchester, Remington and Federal. But just because you don’t see those 300 and 500 round boxes sitting on the Wal-Mart shelf doesn’t mean that .22LR ammo isn’t available. It is. You can get all you want, with two conditions:

  1. You have to work harder to find it.
  2. You have to pay more.

It’s a basic economics decision. You can clutch the memories of old prices while sitting at home not shooting your .22s, or you can accept the new reality and shoot. Your choice.

I’m going to work harder and pay a little more because I really like shooting my .22s. I’m not going to hoard what I have and continue to buy ammo to squirrel away – that’s exactly what’s causing this problem for all of us. I’m going to shoot my .22s and have fun doing it. As I write this, I’m testing a CMMG .22 conversion kit for AR rifles, the new Smith & Wesson M&P 22 Compact with a SilencerCo Sparrow and a Ruger 10/22 with a Timney Trigger upgrade. I intend to shoot lots and lots of .22LR through these guns.

Subscribe to the emails

I few months ago, I got an email from Cabelas letting me know that they had 2,000 round cans of Federal Champion .22LR ammo. I clicked, and a ton of .22LR ammo was on its way for a good price. Subscribe to emails from companies like Cabelas, Webyshops and Brownells, and you just might be surprised at what lands in your inbox. Most companies place a lot of value of their email subscribers and are more than happy to tell them first about new product availability. It’s a win-win – help them communicate with you! Just be sure to keep a close eye on your inbox as you’ll need to act fast.

Grand openings

New stores are opening all over. Chains like Academy Sports, Bass Pro, Cabelas and Gander Mountain can’t build new locations fast enough. Guess what? When they have a grand opening for a new location, they want to create excitement and buzz. Every single grand opening I’ve attended in the past year has managed to offer plentiful supplies of .22LR ammunition. In fact, the ammo in the picture above was purchased at the Grand Opening event of a new Palmetto State Armory store here in South Carolina. Keep an eye on the news and make time to attend. It’s fun, and you’re sure to find some deals.

Set product alerts

Brownells has a neat feature (and plenty of other retailers do also) that allows you to set an automated alert for out of stock products. Use it. You’ll get a text message or email as soon as new product arrives and can be the first to order. I use this all the time with great success. You never know when an alert will come in, so again, keep an eye on that inbox and act fast.

Set alerts like this one at Brownells so you can be notified immediately when the ammo you want is in stock.

Set alerts like this one at Brownells so you can be notified immediately when the ammo you want is in stock.

GunBot.net

Here’s a great example of American ingenuity that solves a frustrating problem. The creators of GunBot.net have established wonder-magic connections to dozens and dozens of online retailers for ammunition. Their website checks availability and pricing of ammunition, magazines and reloading supplies. All you have to do is visit gunbot.net, and you’ll see a consolidated list of retailers that have the products you’re looking for. You can display in-stock products only and sort by price per round. Just click and you’re linked to that particular retailer to place your order. Couldn’t be easier. As of today, you’ll see that you can buy all the .22LR ammo you want for about $.10 per round. Yes, that’s more than it used to cost. Get used to it – it’s still half the price of centerfire ammo. Oh, and don’t gripe at the GunBot.net folks about prices, they don’t set them, they just link you to the folks who do. Make it a point to check GunBot.net a couple times a day and you might find a deal closer to the “old” prices.

These are a couple of the methods I use to shop for my .22LR ammo. I’ve yet to run out, and shoot my .22s as much as ever.

Wanna Win a Glock 42, Holster, Tac Light and Lots of Ammo?

Brownells_giveaway

Check out the Brownells Glock 42 package giveaway. Enter and you can win the Glock 42, holster, a Brownells tactical light and 250 rounds of Hornady .380 ACP ammo. That’s about $1,000 of guns and gear. Not too shabby.

From Brownells…

More specifically, the package includes:

The Hornady RAPiD Safe can be opened with the included RFID bracelet, key fob and wallet card or with a personalized keypad combination the user can set or change. It retails for $249.99.

The Galco Pocket Protector Holster safely covers the trigger guard and its special hooked shape is designed to keep it inside a front pants pocket or jacket pocket as the pistol is drawn. It retails for $21.99

The Brownells Versatile Light adjusts from 13 to 530 lumens, and will run up to 150 hours on the lowest setting and up to 2.5 hours on the highest setting. It retails for $79.99.

Hornady Critical Defense .380 ammunition features the FTX bullet that delivers controlled expansion with deep penetration for maximum effect. It retails for $19.99 per box, and the package includes 10 boxes for a total of 250 rounds.

“All 50 states now have some form of concealed carry,” said Matt Buckingham, President/COO of Brownells. “Millions of law-abiding Americans are exercising their Second Amendment right to self-defense, and getting their permits. This Glock 42 Personal Defense Handgun Package gives you a great carry gun and a high-tech way to safely store the gun at home. Not only that, we’re including lots of ammo, a creatively-designed holster and a handy flashlight, too.”

For a chance to win this exciting package, customers may enter on the Brownells Facebook page or on the Brownells Contest Page starting October 15. The giveaway ends at 11:59 pm on October 27, 2014. The winner will be announced on October 29.

OH AR-15 Hacks: Do These 4 Things Or Your Rifle Might Explode

Here's a properly staked AR gas key. Note how the gas key metal is bashed into the two screws so they can't turn loose.

Here’s a properly staked AR gas key. Note how the gas key metal is bashed into the two screws so they can’t turn loose.

If you think people hyperventilate over hypothetical scenarios in politics, spend some time visiting online gun forums. While fun, and a great way to chit chat with others of like passion, you might leave convinced that your AR rifle has the operational complexity and maintenance requirements of the Trident II D5 ballistic missile.

Yes, your AR rifle requires care and maintenance like any other mechanical device, but don’t fret too much over it. In the past 40 years or so, the design has been improved to the point where it will function properly in some pretty nasty environments and under the worst of conditions.

With that said, here are a few things I like to keep an eye on. And no, if you miss one of the details below, your rifle will almost certainly not explode, but it may not function properly.

Gas rings

You’ll hear all sorts of panic about the three gas rings on your AR bolt.

“I change my gas rings every 9 rounds, because I shoot exceptionally tactically and need to replace them before they wear out.”

“If all three gas rings aren’t in place, the American Idol voting system will crash and Clay Aiken may capture the hearts of pre-teen girls – again.”

“If the gaps in each ring are lined up with each other, Spain will immediately declare war with the National Rifle Association, thereby causing a massive increase in membership solicitation mail.”

OK, so there’s a tiny bit of truth in each of these statements, but only just that – tiny.

Well, actually in the case of lined-up gaps in the gas rings, I don’t think there’s any real truth. The idea is that the gas rings are supposed to do what their name implies and seal gas. With a proper seal, the gas ported back into the bolt carrier will exert the right amount of pressure to unlock the bolt and move it and the bolt carrier back far enough, and fast enough, for proper ejection. The thinking behind the gas ring myth is that if the gaps are lined up, gas will leak between the rings and your semi-automatic rifle will function about as well as the congressional ethics committee.

These three gas rings almost have the gaps lined up! No matter.

These three gas rings almost have the gaps lined up! No matter.

In reality, the bolt and carrier move back and forth and rattle around at speeds approaching Warp 19. This action moves things, including has rings, all over the place. No matter how carefully you line them up to avoid the dreaded alignment scandal, they’ll end up aligned on their own accord at some point.

This brings up a related point. The idea behind three gas rings in the first place is redundancy. They’re consumable items and will break on occasion. Your rifle will most likely work just fine with two, or even just one, gas ring. After all, we’re talking about a lot of gas pressure at play during recoil, so a “mostly sealed” scenario will be just fine.

Nonetheless, it’s a good idea to keep some spare rings on hand. A pack of three costs a grand total of $2.19 from Brownells.

Read the rest at OutdoorHub!

Wanna learn more about guns? Check out The Rookie’s Guide to Guns & Shooting, Handgun Edition. It’s on sale now!

Win a Wilson Combat 1911 From Brownells

Ryan models the Brownell's custom Wilson Combat CQB 1911. That's OK though as I don't think he's eligible to win.

Ryan models the Brownell’s custom Wilson Combat CQB 1911. That’s OK though as I don’t think he’s eligible to win.

At the recent NRA annual meeting, the Brownells booth was busier than the door of Michael Moore’s refrigerator. Fortunately, the inside of the Brownells booth was a whole lot safer than the contents of Mikey’s Frigidaire. The Brownells team is nice, respectful and knowledgable, unlike the other extreme presented here.

Why the crowd?

Brownells is celebrating their 75th anniversary with a bang. To mark the occasion, they’ve had Wilson Combat build a custom CQB 1911, and they’re gonna give it away. Yep, this could be yours.

It. Is. Gorgeous.

I entered. And since I am such a nice guy, I’m going to reduce my own chances of victory and tell you about the contest too.

You can enter here.

To Reload Or Not To Reload… 12 Important Considerations

Once you decide to start reloading, you'll want all the cool gear...

Once you decide to start reloading, you’ll want all the cool gear…

The first step towards healing is to admit you have a problem. I’ve got an ammunition reloading addiction. I can spend hours fantasizing about all the cool gadgets like case concentricity gauges in the Sinclair Reloading catalog. There. I’ve said it.

Since part of my problem is uncontrollable reloading evangelism, I’m going to allocate a couple of these weekly columns to reloading your own ammunition. This week, we’ll look at factors you should consider when deciding whether to reload or not. After our SHOT Show coverage next week. We’ll come back and talk about how to get started.

So how do you decide if reloading is for you? Consider the following.

Are you, or can you be, detail oriented?

As with any shooting related activity, safety comes first. Like shooting, reloading is perfectly safe, as long as you pay attention and follow the rules – every time without fail. With reloading, you have to pay close attention to all aspects of the task. Undercharging (not enough powder) and overcharging (too much powder) are equally dangerous and can harm the shooter and the gun. Seating bullets at the proper depth consistently prevents dangerous over pressure situations. Using the right components, per professionally published recipes is mandatory. While it sounds scary, as long as you are careful and attentive, you can manufacture safe and reliable ammunition.

It’s a gateway drug.

You know, like Crystal Meth. Once you start on that stuff, you’ll quickly move to something really serious. Likewise, if you start reloading something simple, like pistol cartridges, you’ll soon move to rifle cartridges. Before you know it, you’ll be melting lead in your kitchen and casting your own bullets. And we all know how much other family members enjoy lead fumes in the kitchen.

You’ll save money.

If you reload for fun and/or don’t place a dollar value on your reloading time, your cost per cartridge will almost certainly be lower than the price of factory ammunition. Of course, you have to reload often enough to cover the startup equipment costs. We’ll cover that in the next article.

Let’s look at a simple example. Right now, .223 practice ammo costs somewhere around $.45 to $.50 per round. If you reload it yourself, plan on spending about $.09 per bullet, $.03 per primer and $.08 for each powder charge. If you have to buy brass, you can use each casing about 10 times, so your per use cost is about $.04. That brings us to about $.24 per round, not counting your time. Yeah, I know. You know a guy who can get all this stuff cheaper. Keep in mind, this is just a rough estimate example for those uninitiated.

You’ll spend more money.

Once you start reloading, you’ll want to get all the gear. Like digital scales, electronic powder dispensers, power case trimmers, progressive reloading presses, and custom reloading benches. You’ll also shoot a lot more, so even though your cost per round might be lower, you can easily end up spending more money overall.

What’s your time worth?

In our .223 Remington example, we might save $.25 per round, not counting the value of your time. So on a per round basis, your time needs to be worth less than $.25 for the time it takes to assemble one round, else you’re unprofitable. The time value calculations are tricky because they depend on the equipment you have and the pace at which you work safely. Progressive reloading press manufactures claim numbers like 500 rounds per hour, but that doesn’t count other chores like case preparation. Read this to get an idea of the steps involved in reloading .223 Remington ammunition. It’s a little tongue in cheek, but will give you an idea.

If you spend most of your waking hours hanging out at Occupy Something Evil Protests, you’re probably in good shape. If you have a paying job, chances are you’re not beating the ammunition manufacturers in the hourly wage efficiency game. You might be better off working more to cover your ammo bills.

Read the rest at OutdoorHub!

Be sure to check out our latest book, The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition. It’s available in print and Kindle format at Amazon:

The Rookie's Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

Buy Bullets! It’s National Ammo Day

I’m not quite sure who decides that November 19th is National Ammo Day, but hey, I don’t need much of an excuse to buy 100 rounds of ammo.

Buy 100 rounds of ammo - it's National Ammo Day!

Buy 100 rounds of ammo – it’s National Ammo Day!

Yeah, I know, you can’t find it. Well, it’s out there.

Try your local gun store. If they don’t have what you need, check out Brownells. Or Cabelas.

If you want to get really adventurous, check out Gun Bot. It’s a free ammo search service that scans all sorts of online retailers to see who’s got what. You can even filter the search results for in stock only.

So go buy 100 rounds of ammo. You’ll save the economy, so it’s your patriotic duty!

Deal Alert: Brownells AR Magazines On Sale For $9.99

Brownells AR MagazineJust saw this folks – a great time to stock up on Brownells AR magazines. They’re excellent and reliable.

How (Not) to Install an AR-15 Flat Top Gas Block and Front Sight Base

Well, mostly this is an article about how to install an AR-15 flat-top front sight base and gas block. But we will share a few tips about how not to, learned the hard way, to save you aggravation should you choose to get adventurous with your own AR-15 rifle.

Here’s a pretty basic AR-15 rifle. This one happens to be a DPMS Lite 16 A3 AR-15. As you can see, it has the standard front sight base and gas block installed. While this piece looks to be permanently affixed to the rifle, it’s not. It’s just stuck on there, albeit really tightly, with a couple of pins.

AR 15 JP Gas Block Installation

Here’s a DPMS Lite 16 A3 AR-15. We’re going to replace the integral front sight base / gas block with a flat top version. So we can do a bunch of cool customizations to this rifle.

There’s nothing wrong with keeping the standard AR-15 front sight base, especially if you use no or low-power optics on your rifle. With a very low-power scope or red dot sight, you won’t really see the front sight (too much) and it makes a nice backup should your optic fail.

However, there are a number of good reasons you may want to consider removing the standard AR-15 sight block and replacing it with a flat top gas block.

Top 5 reasons to remove that ungainly AR-15 fixed front sight:

  1. While charging enemy positions, the wind resistance of the fixed AR-15 front sight slows you down.
  2. While it appears to double as a handy, integral bottle opener, you’ve come to your senses and determined that’s a really bad idea.
  3. Hardly any of Stickman’s rifles have one.
  4. You can use those cool AR-15 flip-up backup sights. Magpul, the company who just told Colorado politicians to enthusiastically pound sand, makes them. Support the resistance!
  5. If you use a scope, you can still kind of see the front sight getting in the way. It get’s really annoying with a higher-powered optic.

Whatever your reason, you can do this from the comfort of your home!

AR-15 JP Adjustable Gas Block System Installation

The JP Enterprise Adjustable Gas System

We have a number of reasons for embarking on this Dremel-free (hopefully) home-gunsmithing journey. You see, this rifle is going to be the starting point for a project we’re doing with the folks at Blackhawk!. As we wrote about earlier, Blackhawk! is making some really swell accessories for AR-15 style rifles, and putting a flat top gas block will give us a little more flexibility. Stay tuned!

After consulting the folks at Brownells.com, we decided to install the JP Enterprise Adjustable Gas System. We like the way it mounts with 3 solid hex screws and that it offers a quick-detach rail at standard height. This will allow us to mount a Blackhawk! backup sight system later. We also like the adjustable gas flow feature which allows you to tweak the amount of gas flowing back to the action. Adjust it so enough gas flows to ensure reliable operation with your favorite .223 or 5.56mm ammunition, but not so much that your rifle gets battered to bits over time.

Ready for some basic gunsmithing? Let’s go!

AR-15 Front Sight Base Here’s our existing front sight base and gas block. It kinda looks permanent, but only because some parkerizing goop has been sloshed over the seams. It’ll come off with a little love and tenderness!
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation remove upper First, remove the upper receiver from the lower. This will make things a lot easier.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation padded vise In order to remove the front sight base, you’ll need to remove the flash hider or muzzle brake on your rifle. This will be much easier if you have a vise. Since we don’t have a dedicated barrel vise, we’re doing some budget improvisation and using an old kevlar vest as padding between our AR-15 barrel and those toothy vise jaws. What? It works…
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation remove flash hider On our DPMS rifle, the flash hider was plenty tight, but not ridiculously so. A proper fitting wrench, a little elbow grease and some caution allowed us to take it right off.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation keep washer Be sure not to lose the washer. And pay attention to its orientation as this will go back on after the new gas block is installed.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation muzzle threads Now the threaded end of your barrel is exposed. What a great time to brush the crud off!
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation (1) The next step is to punch out the two lower pins that hold the sight base to the barrel. This picture shows our highly-sophisticated system for supporting the barrel and sight base while allowing the pins to get knocked out the bottom.
AR-15 Front Sight Bench Block Better yet, get this AR-15 bench block from Brownells.com. It’s specifically designed to support the front sight and has cutout holes for pin removal. You’re far less likely to ding up your rifle trying to pound out stubborn pins. It’s well worth the money, especially if you’re going to use it more than once. We got impatient waiting for ours and used the budget method, with the expected results…
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation remove pins If you have brass punches, use them. You’ll be far less likely to ding up your existing sight base and your barrel. While brass leaves marks, it can be scrubbed off. Also, use a punch pin that is as close as possible to the diameter of the pin, without being larger. Using too small of a pin will “mush out” the pin and make it harder to remove. These pins are going to be pretty tight, so you’ll have to support the barrel well and smack the crud out of it. One of ours was so stubborn, we had to drill it out. Hopefully you won’t have to resort to that!
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation gas tube pin Now remove the upper pin that holds the gas tube in place. This one will come out pretty easily. Be careful not to bend the gas tube. Try not to notice the brass marks where we fought that second pin with very little elegance.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation remove gas tube Now the gas tube will pull out of the front sight base. And you have yet another great spring cleaning opportunity. Clean the interior and holes of the gas tube, but remember to leave it bone dry when finished.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation hammer Here’s another one of those right tool for the job opportunities. You’ll need to whack the front sight base towards the muzzle a couple of times to break it loose. A plastic hammer like this one from Brownells will do the job.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation remove sight block Once broken loose, the front sight assembly will slide forward and off the barrel. Here’s where you’ll get to see how much attention to detail was placed on your rifle’s manufacture. This barrel was not parkerized under the sight as you can see the bare steel.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation gas port Yet another cleaning opportunity. If your rifle has been used, there will be some gas crud around the gas port. Clean it off and dry.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation adjustable Now we’re cookin’ with propane! Insert the gas regulator screw into the gas block just enough to hold it in place. Next, insert the gas tube, making sure to insert the right end.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation line up gas port Be sure that the hole in the gas tube aligns properly with the gas block port before the next step.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation (2) Slide the whole assembly into place, being careful not to bend the gas tube.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation (3) You’ll see the holes where the gas tube enters the receiver. Line everything up.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation (4) Once you’re confident that everything is in place, you can insert and tight the three hex screws that hold the gas block to the barrel. Now you can reinstall your flash hider or muzzle brake.
AR-15 JP Gas Block Installation completed That’s it for the installation portion of this upgrade. Just replace your hand guards and reattach the upper and lower receivers. The next step has to be done at the range, so be sure to read on!

Adjusting the JP Enterprise Gas Block

Earlier we mentioned that you can tweak the gas flow using this particular JP Enterprises gas block. The process is a lot easier than it sounds.

  1. Bring your normal .223 and/or 5.56mm ammo to the range.
  2. Be SURE to bring the included hex wrench that fits the gas adjustment screw!
  3. Turn the gas adjustment screw (the silver one) all the way in to completely close off the gas port.
  4. Now back it out a couple of turns.
  5. Load and fire one shot.
  6. If the bolt of your rifle stays open, you’re likely done. If it does not, then you’re not getting enough gas. That sounds kind of wrong doesn’t it?
  7. If your bolt is not locking open on the last shot, keep opening the gas screw until the bolt locks back consistently on the last shot.
  8. When you get it set, you may want to use a little LocTite to keep it from moving around. Be sure to use low or medium strength so you can break the screw loose later if you need to!
  9. Just remember, if you change ammunition, you may need to readjust.

Next up, the Blackhawk! AR-15 upgrade project. Each article, we’ll document one part of the upgrade process.

Stay tuned!

 

You can find this at Brownells

J P Enterprises Ar-15/M16 Adjustable Gas Block
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A Custom Ruger 10/22 for Project Valour-IT

Custom_Ruger_1022_right.jpg

 

We’ve just completed an epic building project. Successfully. Without bleeding. Or parts left over.

This Custom Ruger 10/22 is a phantasmagorical plinker

This Custom Ruger 10/22 is a phantasmagorical plinker

Over the past couple of months, we’ve been working with the great folks at Ruger and Brownells to customize a stock Ruger 10/22 Carbine. It’s now a fancy race rifle. A glamorous gun. A fantastic firearm. A phantasmagorical plinker. You get the idea.

Ruger graciously donated the rifle, and the always generous Brownells team donated the parts, and more importantly, the expertise for the project.

Our role was simply to be average and build this custom Ruger 10/22. Being average, mechanically uninclined and generally untalented was not at all hard for us, as most gunsmithing projects around here end badly – usually with a large ziploc of parts being delivered to a genuine gunsmith. But one of the primary ideas behind the project was to see how much can be done to customize a Ruger 10/22 without special tools or knowledge. The other main objective was to document the process so our readers could see exactly how to customize their own Ruger 10/22’s.

Custom Ruger 10/22 with original parts included

If you win this auction, you get the factory original parts too

Fortunately, we picked the right platform – the Ruger 10/22 – and the right partners – the Brownells Gun Tech Team. This combination of an easy to customize rifle platform, and always ready advice and expertise made a positive end result inevitable. Even for us.

You see, a quality outcome for the project was a critical objective, because as much as we wanted to keep this rifle, it was destined for greater things. Last week, we sent it off to Ruger for final cleanup and photography. Now it’s listed for auction on Gunbroker.com.

The best part? 100% of the proceeds are being donated to Project Valour-IT. In case you’re not familiar, Project Valour-IT is a group within the fantastic Soldiers Angels organization that aims to provide voice-controlled/adaptive laptop computers and other technology to support Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand wounds and other severe injuries.

This is a great cause and we’re glad to help them out.

Now you too can help Project Valour-IT and obtain a fantastic rifle in the process. Ruger will ship the customized rifle to the winners FFL for delivery along with all of the original parts and a signed letter of authenticity.

You can read all about the Ruger 10/22 customization process and the parts used.

More importantly, head on over to Gunbroker.com and place your bid!

Soup It Up For Soldiers Step 5: Optics – Add The Right Riflescope

Soup it up for Soldiers Custom Ruger 10/22 Project Step 5 - Scope

After much crying, whining, gnashing of teeth, a few injuries, but no lost parts, we’ve reached the finish line with Step 5 of the Ruger 10/22 Soup it up for Soldiers Custom Ruger 10/22 build.

Ruger Custom 10/22 Project Step 5: Add A Sweet Riflescope

Nikon ProStaff Rimfire 4x32 scope on Ruger 10/22

The Nikon ProStaff Rimfire scope makes a perfect complement to the custom Ruger 1022

The generous folks at Brownells have donated a sweet optic for our project Ruger 10/22 – a Nikon ProStaff Rimfire 4×32 Riflescope. They also sent a set of Burris Signature ZEE rings so we could mount the Nikon on the rail included with the stock Ruger 10/22

The Nikon ProStaff is a 4x fixed power scope – perfect for plinking and small game hunting. It’s nitrogen filled so it won’t fog in humid or rainy conditions. We know this for a fact as the rifle was zeroed in South Cackalackee’s 90/90/90 weather conditions. To the uninitiated, that’s 90 degrees, 90 percent humidity, and 90 times as hot as should be legal.

We really like the windage and elevation adjustment design on this scope. Under the protective turret caps are hand operated knobs that provide 1/4” adjustment per click at 50 yards. Nice and simple and no tools are required to zero the scope. We zeroed the scope at 50 yards as this scope is designed to be parallax free at that distance.

At the range we found the scope to be bright and clear. The reticle is the Nikoplex Duplex design. This is a fancy description that means the crosshairs are fine in the center with heavy posts closer to the circumference. This design naturally directs your eye to the center of the scope.

The Burris Signature ZEE rings are medium height and matte black finished. These rings include self centering synthetic inserts. This accomplishes two things. First, as you mount and tighten the scope, the inserts automatically adjust to align the scope with the rings. The scope bases are concave on the interior which allows the inserts to move freely as the scope is placed in the rings. Second, the inserts help to protect the scope from dings and bending.

Let’s get started!

Nikon ProStaff Rimfire 4x32 and Burris Signature scope rings

The Nikon ProStaff Rimfire scope comes with elastic mounted lens covers, instruction book, and Torx wrench.

Mounting Burris Signature scope rings on the Ruger 10/22

Remove the top half of the rings completely using the included Torx wrench. The Burris Signature ZEE scope rings will slide over the end of the rail. Just remove the bolt and slide each bottom ring over the rail. Now re-insert the bolt so that it is set in one of the rail slots. Tighten it up.

Burris Signature ZEE scope rings insert

Drop half of one of the included synthetic inserts into the base of each ring. Note that the inserts are designed to fit together in a specific way. You’ll see a small cutout notch on one side of the insert. Line that up for top and bottom halves of the insert.

Mount the Nikon Prostaff scope and adjust eye relief

Rest the scope in place and install the top inserts, followed by the top half of the rings. Do not tighten anything at this point. Now pick up the (unloaded) rifle and mount it to your shoulder in a normal shooting position. Slide the scope back and forth until you have clear visibility through the scope with no shadowing around the edges. When it’s perfectly positioned, tighten the top halves of the rings. Not too much! Time saving tip: be sure that the crosshairs are perfectly aligned vertically before tightening.

Nikon ProStaff Rimfire scope turret dials

Now it’s off to the range to zero this bad boy. Using your preferred .22 ammo, set up on some sandbags and remove the windage and elevation adjustment covers. You can easily adjust both using the exposed knobs. We recommend setting the zero at a distance of 50 yards as that distance is parallax free with this particular scope. Once you’re happy with the zero, raise each knob vertically. This will disengage the cap from the adjustments so you can rotate the knob to read zero. Push the cap back down and you’re done. You’ll see a zero line for each adjustment just underneath the knob at the back.

The Custom Ruger 10/22 was tested with a variety of .22LR ammo - Winchester, CCI, Eley, Armscor, Remington

We tried a variety of .22 ammo in the rifle and had the best overall success with CCI Mini Mag. .22 ammo is notoriously finicky with semi-autos, so try a few types to see what your gun likes. We’ve not had good success with the Winchester white box bulk packs in a number of semi-auto rifles and pistols. The other brands we tried all worked completely reliably in this gun.

The Custom Ruger 10/22 shot excellent groups with Eley .22LR ammo

Being total idiots, we dashed off to the range to zero this scope without our sandbags. Using a shooting bag as an impromptu rest, we were still able to get some fantastic groups with this rifle. The photo here shows 4 shots in one large hole at 50 yards. The 5th was a result of a poor rest combined with aging eyes and a spastic trigger finger. This group was shot with Eley Practice ammo. The CCI Mini Mag load performed just as well. Measured center to center, the four shot group measured .443 inches. Nice!

Now that we’re finished, we’re packing up this rifle and sending it to Ruger to be photographed and placed for auction on Ruger’s GunBroker.com page. Of course, all original parts from the Ruger 10/22 Carbine will be included in the auction.

Remember, all proceeds from the auction go directly to Project Valour-IT of Soldiers Angels! So bid generously! We’ll post a notification and link to the auction as soon as it goes live.

You can review the complete Soup it up for Soldiers series with detailed commentary on each step here.

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