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Rimfire Firearms .22, .17 and other Rimfire Handguns and Rifles

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  #1  
Old 05-26-2011, 8:13 PM
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Default My .22 AR (Chiappa M4-22) upper saga + pics

So this started about a year ago when I pick up the Chiappa M4-22 upper so that I can practice shooting an AR at indoor ranges that are close to me. So here she is:

-ATI/Chiappa M4-22 dedicated .22lr upper
-Grizzly lower
-Stag LPK
-JP Enterprises 3.5lb trigger spring kit
-Bushy carbine stock
-Ergo pistol grip
-el cheapo NcStar red dot
-Black Dog mags
-Krylon paint

It was shooting great. Decent accuracy and few failures using a mix of ammo from Remmy and Winny bulk packs, to the Armscor, to CCI, to American Eagle. Then...

...at about the 1500 round mark, I experienced a failure. The bolt would not return to battery. Hmmm...I pop the rear take down pin, tilt the upper to remove the bolt assembly, and out it comes...in pieces.

It looks like the bolt spring rod (#42 in the schematic) broke off at the bolt block (#32). I sent the bolt assembly back to ATI, they repaired it and sent it back, no problem. My .22 AR is back in business, everything is good again until...

...reaching the 500 round mark, it experienced the EXACT same failure again. I sent it back to ATI again, with a letter explaining the failure and how it's the 2nd time it happened.

ATI (per Chiappa) ended up sending me back a completely new bolt assembly! Upon closer inspection, it looks like Chiappa re-designed the bolt block (#32) to capture and hold in the bolt spring guide rod (#42) with a c-clip. The bolt block now has 2 nubs that stick up, instead of one(as pictured in the schematic) and the c-clip captures the bolt spring rod between these 2 nubs. Looks like it should work better. We'll see. I only received the new bolt assembly yesterday.


new, re-designed bolt assembly from Chiappa:



I think the problem with the original design was that #42 was screwed into #32 and that connection had to remain stiff. With the stress of the bolt cycling back and forth, it probably kept bending #42 until the part failed. You know, how you bend a piece of metal back and forth repeatedly until it just splits? I think that's what happened here.

With this new design, #42 has some play as it's held into #32 and therefore, #42 should not be stressed to the point of failure where it connects to #32.
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Old 05-26-2011, 8:14 PM
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very nice!
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Old 05-26-2011, 8:16 PM
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So what did I do while I was waiting for the new bolt assembly? I decided to modify my M4-22 upper to more closely mimic my 5.56 carbine(Noveske upper on Lauer Custom Weaponry lower):

which now has an ergo pistol grip.
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Old 05-26-2011, 8:18 PM
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The plan:
-install Midwest Industries SS series free float handguard
-move front sight forward
-add a dash of Magpul
-reassemble and hope the re-designed bolt assembly holds up

The do:
-separate the components


-upper assembly secured in the receiver block on a vice



-disassembled upper



-Midwest Industries SS series free float handguard prepped for paint



-Krylon is your friend
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Old 05-26-2011, 8:20 PM
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(CONT)

-barrel secured with barrel nut



-handguard installed



-front sight re-installed in the forward position



-fake birdcage flash hider re-installed



-reassemble, ad a touch of Magpul, and the final result
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  #6  
Old 05-26-2011, 8:26 PM
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It's been a long road to get this .22 AR up to this point. Hopefully the re-designed bolt assembly holds up and I wont have any more failures due to that. Cant wait to send some down range.
So, long story short...
before



after
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Old 05-26-2011, 8:26 PM
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Looking good!
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  #8  
Old 05-26-2011, 9:03 PM
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looks nice, ya my bolt carrier looks like the new one you have so hopefully it does the job without fail. Ive put 500 rounds through it and it looks fine so hopefully all is good.
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Old 05-26-2011, 9:08 PM
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That's good to hear. I'm guessing ATI/Chiappa was having a lot warranty repairs done on the old bolt assembly design.
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Old 05-26-2011, 9:11 PM
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let me ask you something tho, this is my first AR style rifle and i know that the charging handle on other rifles come out real easy but mine does not seem to pop out? is this normal or am i just doing something wrong??
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Old 05-26-2011, 9:19 PM
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How do you like that SS handguard? Looking to get a 10-12 inch for my current project.
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Old 05-26-2011, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Warguy View Post
let me ask you something tho, this is my first AR style rifle and i know that the charging handle on other rifles come out real easy but mine does not seem to pop out? is this normal or am i just doing something wrong??
It's just a tight fit. With the bolt assembly removed, turn the upper upside down. Look at the channel that the charging handle rides in. Toward the rear, you'll see a pair of rounded relief cuts/notches. There is a bulge toward the front portion of the charging handle that you have to line up with the relief cuts/notches to pull it out. And it's a tight fit on a brand new Chiappa upper. Give it a little "oomph" and it should scrape by.
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Old 05-26-2011, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by G1500 View Post
How do you like that SS handguard? Looking to get a 10-12 inch for my current project.
I have the extended carbine handguard which falls between the mid-length and rifle-length. I like the light weight and price point, plus it looks good. One of the things I really like about it, and this is personal preference, is the lack of rails. I prefer the smooth handguard and I can put small rail sections where I need them. It's partially the same reason I went with the PRI carbon fiber handguard on my 5.56 carbine pictured above–smooth surface, rails only where you need them. I'll have a better feel for the MI handguard after I take it out to the range.
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Old 05-26-2011, 10:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
It's just a tight fit. With the bolt assembly removed, turn the upper upside down. Look at the channel that the charging handle rides in. Toward the rear, you'll see a pair of rounded relief cuts/notches. There is a bulge toward the front portion of the charging handle that you have to line up with the relief cuts/notches to pull it out. And it's a tight fit on a brand new Chiappa upper. Give it a little "oomph" and it should scrape by.
perfect, got it, ya i noticed those notches before and i thought it was supposed to come out but i was just worried about bending or breaking it, got it out tho, thanks for the help
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Old 05-27-2011, 6:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
I have the extended carbine handguard which falls between the mid-length and rifle-length. I like the light weight and price point, plus it looks good. One of the things I really like about it, and this is personal preference, is the lack of rails. I prefer the smooth handguard and I can put small rail sections where I need them. It's partially the same reason I went with the PRI carbon fiber handguard on my 5.56 carbine pictured above–smooth surface, rails only where you need them. I'll have a better feel for the MI handguard after I take it out to the range.
I am looking at getting one, I have an MI T series on one rifle, and it is a little fat with all the rails. Considering I am going to use it on a featureless rifle I really don't need all the rails and extra weight. I was looking at the TROY battlerail and it seemed kind of rough an narrow. I'm hoping this rail is a little thicker. It's still cheaper I believe, and I happen to like how MI designs their rails better.

I'd love to hear how it works for you when you try it out.
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Old 05-28-2011, 7:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
(CONT)
-front sight re-installed in the forward position
How did you re-attach the front sight in the forward position?

Is it on there sturdily and not twist off center?
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Old 05-28-2011, 8:12 AM
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How did you re-attach the front sight in the forward position?

Is it on there sturdily and not twist off center?
The front sight is held on by a set screw that seats into a pocket drilled into the barrel. If you look closely at this pic, you will see the set screw at the fake bayonet lug:

Using a drill press and clamps, I secured the barrel in order to drill a pocket in the new position.

If you choose to do this, measure carefully, then triple check your measurements. Once set up on the drill press, triple check that set up too.

When you actually start drilling, start with a tiny pilot hole. Because of the round surface, the drill bit has a tendency to want to dance around at first. GO SLOWLY. After you have the pilot hole drilled, step up the drill bit until you reach the correct size for the set screw.
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Old 05-28-2011, 7:49 PM
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Interesting....New ideas that I might do to my Chip upper
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Old 05-31-2011, 11:15 PM
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So I took her out to an indoor range to sight in the red dot and irons. Some observations on my mods:

-no complaints with the Midwest Industries SS free float handguard...should be no surprise–it's on a .22 at a one way shooting range

-the front sight assembly that I moved forward stayed put–I did it right! Earlier in this thread, I forgot to mention that originally it was slightly canted to the left, which I corrected when I moved it forward.

-I'm realizing more and more, each time I take her out, that the NcStar red dot sucks...it's not a precise dot

-I had roughly 1 in 10 rounds fail to fire...I only brought along CCI "AR Tactical" 22LR in the 375 round bulk pack to feed her, so I'll have to figure out if it's the ammo, the firing pin in the new bolt assembly, or the 3.5lb JP trigger spring kit causing the problem

-not one failure to feed or eject, so at least that's working right

-lots of compliments and questions at the range


results of sighting in the red dot and irons at 50 feet(center), then confirming point of aim(4 orange targets):

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Old 06-01-2011, 9:04 AM
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I hear 80% hammer spring helps for FTE and whatnot. Seems you are in another boat.

I tried to turn my hammer spring backwards to see if it would help, and the firing pin wouldn't strike the case hard enough to fire. Did you happen to notice if the strikes on the casing were light?
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Old 06-01-2011, 6:45 PM
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My Chiappa M4-22 Upper seems so plain compared to yours...

Its a Plum crazy lower with PrimaryArms reddot..SUPER LIGHT






Looks like I also got a good one...3000rnds...No issues so far....
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Old 06-01-2011, 8:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uxo2 View Post
My Chiappa M4-22 Upper seems so plain compared to yours...

Its a Plum crazy lower with PrimaryArms reddot..SUPER LIGHT






Looks like I also got a good one...3000rnds...No issues so far....
I got a pcl and chiappa upper also! its a good combo and i love my AR



I had a Primary arms micro green reflex sight on it too lol, but it was not holding zero so i sent it back and now there sending me a 3-9x40 scope of theirs.
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Old 06-05-2011, 9:50 PM
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the saga continues....

I met with a friend at Burbank Firing Line this past Friday night just have fun and hopefully narrow down the culprit causing the failure to fire problems.

I brought 4 different brands of .22 ammo this time and the rifle was still experiencing failures to fire about 15% of the time. So it's not the ammo. Looking at the cases, it's looking like light strikes.

This narrows down the problem to:
1) the new bolt assembly(recently back as a replacement for old bolt under warranty-more on that below)
2) the 3.5lb JP trigger spring kit

me on the AR/Chiappa upper:


she shot the rifle well for a first timer:


We were having fun, she was shooting well for her experience level. She was telling me she was a little intimidated by the .45, but she soldiered on like a champ!

her trying out the USP45:


tennis ball never stood a chance...RIP:


Then, it goes south...

...the new replacement bolt assembly incorporating the re-designed bolt block ALSO EXPERIENCED A FAILURE.
GRRRRRRRR...

This, after only the 2nd trip to the range and less that 400 rounds with the new bolt assembly...the resulting carnage:

It looks like the c-clip that captures the bolt spring rod between the nubs on the bolt block separated, causing the failure.

So, I'm sending the bolt assembly back, yet again for warranty service FOR THE SAME PROBLEM...I'll update later...
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Old 06-05-2011, 9:53 PM
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uxo2, which bolt assembly do you have, the old one with the single nub bolt block or the newer one with the 2 nubs on the bolt block?

apparently, both versions don't work right for me
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Old 06-06-2011, 1:06 AM
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Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
uxo2, which bolt assembly do you have, the old one with the single nub bolt block or the newer one with the 2 nubs on the bolt block?

apparently, both versions don't work right for me
that sucks man, i hope this third one works out, ive already got 700rds through mine and ive had almost zero issues. I hope it works out for ya.
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Old 06-06-2011, 5:19 PM
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pics up later.....I am amazed.....No issues with mine....So WTF






PCF BLOW BACK HAMMER with JP yellow spring.


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Old 06-06-2011, 10:06 PM
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[STRIKE]I am amazed.....No issues with mine....So WTF
That's what makes it really frustrating...it seems to work fine for everyone else. If this problem could be fixed, it would be perfect...it never jammed–no stove pipes, no double feeds, no failures to extract. And not once did a spent casing get jammed in the charging handle, which seems to be a problem with .22 ARs.

I just want the spring guide rod to stop separating from the bolt block.
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Old 06-16-2011, 8:04 AM
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Finally got my RA#...I'm sending the bolt assembly back for warranty service...to be continued...
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Old 06-16-2011, 5:15 PM
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Atleast Chiappa is fixing it...hopefully permantly
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Old 06-16-2011, 8:20 PM
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Finally got my RA#...I'm sending the bolt assembly back for warranty service...to be continued...
Its funny i was just about to post in this thread today cause my bolt carrier did the same thing, the clip broke or something and it caused a failure, but the good news is that the spring was not really damaged that much and still feeds well so i went to home depot and found a 1/8th C clip and put it back together. I have about 1700 rounds through it and im probably going to take it back out tomorrow and see how my replacement clip works. Hopefully it will be fine....
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Old 06-29-2011, 9:32 PM
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So, today in the mail, I got a package from ATI. To re-cap, I had sent the pieces of what was left of the bolt assembly back to ATI for warranty service. Along with that, I included a note detailing the failure history and I also inquired about purchasing a spare bolt assembly...

I open up to box to find...TWO BRAND NEW BOLT ASSEMBLIES!!!! They were still sealed in the original plastic bag!

I have to give major props to ATI's customer service, they have been a pleasure to deal with throughout all this. I actually feel a little bad for them that they partnered with Chiappa. ATI also suggested that I email Chiappa directly about the problems I've been having, as ATI has been trying to get Chiappa to improve this particular product.

Overall, I'm extremely pleased with ATI and how their customer service has been treating me.

As far as Chiappa goes...the jury is still out...

It's time to take her back out to the range...more later...
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Old 07-24-2011, 3:47 PM
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Did you shoot it yet???
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Old 08-04-2011, 8:47 PM
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Yes, I took it out recently. Well...after about 100 rounds, the e-clip that retains the spring guide rod decided to relieve itself of it's duties. All I can do now is laugh to keep from crying, as this situation has just gotten ri-cock-ulous.

So my solution for now...I went to the hardware store and bought a bunch of e-clips that are slightly larger/beefier than what came from Chiappa. I pinched the e-clip tighter/smaller with a pair of pliers and reinstalled on the Chiappa spring guide rod. It seems to hold up for now...if it doesn't, I have my supply of spare e-clips ready to go. Plus I have that other spare complete bolt assembly ATI sent.

Eventually, I'll probably be looking in to buying a CMMG barrel and matched bolt assembly.
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Old 08-04-2011, 9:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
Yes, I took it out recently. Well...after about 100 rounds, the e-clip that retains the spring guide rod decided to relieve itself of it's duties. All I can do now is laugh to keep from crying, as this situation has just gotten ri-cock-ulous.

So my solution for now...I went to the hardware store and bought a bunch of e-clips that are slightly larger/beefier than what came from Chiappa. I pinched the e-clip tighter/smaller with a pair of pliers and reinstalled on the Chiappa spring guide rod. It seems to hold up for now...if it doesn't, I have my supply of spare e-clips ready to go. Plus I have that other spare complete bolt assembly ATI sent.

Eventually, I'll probably be looking in to buying a CMMG barrel and matched bolt assembly.
1) That sucks... The entire situation is just becoming silly...

2) When you do decide to go the CMMG direction, make sure you PM shadow65 first... He'll get you a great deal on a CMMG upper.
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Old 09-04-2011, 5:49 AM
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Had the same issue with the bolt yesterday after 800 rounds. Never had a problem until yesterday I am reqeusting an RA today . I hope Chiappa or ATI comes through with the service.
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Old 09-04-2011, 6:23 PM
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Well all I can say is MY Chiappa M4 22 upper hasn't given me a lick of trouble.....since I SOLD it!!!! Faliure to feed, eject, stovepiping, return to battery and firing out of battery. Plus zero response to emails sent to the people I was talking with when I placed the order and Customer Service were the hand writing on the wall for me. Will never have anything to do with any Chiappa product again. Their email service worked fine as long as I was going to BUY something, not when I had a problem and needed help with their product.
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:50 PM
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Buy a Spikes or a CMMG rimfire upper. I've got an old Ceiner kit that I bought from a friend in 1997 with thousands of rounds thru it. You just have to run the .22 kits wet. I had to replace the firing pin a few years ago because I dry fired it.
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Old 09-05-2011, 2:15 PM
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yeah...I give up on the Chiappa .22 upper.

I had some extra parts lying around so I decided to build a new upper based on the CMMG .22 system. All I needed to order to complete the build was the CMMG barrel and chamber adaptor kit:

I'll start a new thread with pics of the completed project.
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Old 09-05-2011, 2:20 PM
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Also, I'll be using the rifle length MI SS handguard so it will be an even closer copy to my 5.56 carbine in post #3 above
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Old 09-06-2011, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soopafly View Post
Also, I'll be using the rifle length MI SS handguard so it will be an even closer copy to my 5.56 carbine in post #3 above
Nice project, good to see photos and a parts list when you get going. The only thing I liked about the Chiappa system was the magazines ( they sent me the HiCap mags although I requested the 10rd fer CA compliance). The mags had a thumb thingie to depress the follower for easier loading without wearing out your thumb, anybody elas have that stlye? I still have a Ciener type 22 conversion kit unused with 2 Blackdog mags. Never actually thought about building an upper with it. Something to ponder though.
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