This Build has been 4 years in the making and has sustained several major changes. My goal was to make the most reliable and durable 10/22 takedown. The rifle had to be able to have repeatable accuracy and couldn't have any fragile parts that were prone to break.
The basis for the design was the was the Talo exclusive 50th anniversary takedown with stainless threaded barrel, camo stock, and brown carry bag.
When magpul came out with the X22 Backpacker it was a must have. The way it stores together while still fitting in the large sleeve of the bag is a great feature. The storage in the stock and pistol grip is great as well. It has a 13in LOP which is perfect for a compact survival rifle. Magpuls QD inserts were added to the stock with the addition of a MS4 sling. The only thing I wish the stock had was mlok slots on the forend for the addition of a light. I feel like this was a real opportunity missed since a light on a survival rifle just makes sense.
The 10/22s sights are nothing special and can easily be improved. I originally changed them out for some fiber optic sights but I've never really trusted fiber optics sights durability. I've personally broken them on several guns as well as a 10/22. I then added a 1-4 scope to the receiver but because the barrel disconnects and reconnects there was often some minor POI shifts. While these shifts were only about an inch at 25 yards they were enough to make me look for another option. I finally decided to add Tech Sights because while the rear sight is attached to the reciever the front sight is at the end of the barrel virtually eliminating POI shifts. I did make sure to add blue loctite to all the screws on the sights. You dont want anything coming lose when braving the wild unknown. The downside to these types of sights is that they dont aid in low light shooting like you get with fiber optic sights or a scope. I'm still debating with adding Magpuls barrel mount for use with a red dot. It will add an additional couple hundred dollars to this already expensive build but might be a nice addition provided that the mount doesnt hinder using the tech sights when the red dot is removed.
I added the Volquartsen Bolt upgrade kit to ensure better extraction and reliable ignition although I will confess that I never had any issues with either prior to the upgrade. I just added them as a fail safe to a gun that is sure to see a high round count. The hardened steel of the Volquartsen parts will ensure longer reliability with extraction and primer strikes.
Ammo: Since this rifle must be reliable it needed reliable ammo. Most malfunctions from a 10/22 are ammo induced. The bulk packs are great for fun at the range but you can expect at least a few problematic rounds per pack. I went with CCI minimags for the ammo to keep in the pack as they've proven to be extremely reliable. The 40gr solids also show pretty good results in ballistics gel and would be the preferred round for self defense or taking large game. The 36gr HP round is a great small game round that generally results in a 1 shot kill on squirrels and rabbits. I keep 500 rounds of mini mags in water proof containers in the bag.
Much like ammo the magazines are a major cause of malfunctions in the 10/22. Factory mags are a must but even they arent all equal. I have a total of 4 BX25 mags but only 2 of the 4 have been reliable while the other 2 have been problematic on a regular basis. Also the longer magazines make shooting from prone almost impossible. So in the end I've opted to stick with the 10 rounders in the bag. I have added to use the Trimag adapters that allow 3 of the 10 rounders to be connected in a triangular pattern. This allows you to keep 30 rounds on board with very fast magazine changes. They also dont interfere with prone shooting. So I now have a total of 7 10 rounders with the rifle, 2 of the trimag setups and 1 additional 10 round mag.
The tech sights allow you to be as accurate as you can with a good set of peep sights. A scope does allow you to wring additional accuracy out the rifle but it does have the downsides previously mentioned. With the tech sights I have no issue maintaining 1in groups at 25 yards off a tree rest. 4 moa is nothing impressive but certainly acceptable for a .22 semiautomatic survival rifle. I dont doubt that the groups would be tighter off a bench with a skilled shooter behind it. Offhand shots are a breeze when shooting at a squirrel in the top of an acorn tree.
I added a Volquartsen auto bolt release to rifle. This makes releasing the bolt normal just like you would on most semiautomatic rifles. It is an inexpensive part but with a dremel you can easily modify your own existing bolt releases. I've since opted not to spend the $10 and just modify the existing ones on my other rifles. I also added the BX trigger which is a huge upgrade over the stock trigger. It makes making precise shots very easy. The final upgrade that I did wasnt to the rifle but the bag. While the bag is mostly a carry case it only has 1 strap, but it does have loops for the addition of another strap. Ruger sells the straps on their website so I ordered an additional one so it could be worn as a backpack.
I keep a bic lighter and an allan wrench in the water tight compartment of the stock. The allan wrench is there for disassembly. I just checked the lighter for the first time in 4 years and it still works as if it was brand new. I keep a Kabar Bk17, and Otis cleaning kit in the bag as well. This along with the 500 rounds of CCI keeps the bag at a reasonable weight. I dont plan on walking off on foot with this bag however. If I ever needed to venture off on foot I'd remove the contents of the bag and put them in my main bugout bag.
This build is ever evolving but with over $700 in it currently I cant think of too many future upgrades. This bag has been with me on every road trip that I've made in the past 4 years. I'd just hate to be without it if I ever needed it.
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