The select fire 10/22
June 26, 2012
There are two things I should start off saying about this:
- It is FUN! I mean to tell you it is probably one of my favorite MG’s to shoot.
- It is an absolute bitch to get running right
Yep, this little thing is the most bang for your buck out there. Spend 20 bucks, and you can have fun all day. Hell, they make 22 tracers now, so you can shoot all night, too! Also, did I mention it shoots at OVER 1000 rounds per minute?
All that having been said, I have no idea if there are any transferable full-auto 10/22’s out there. If not, it’s a shame.
The build, I thought, would be straight forward: buy the conversion kit and drop it in. Well, not so much. In the end, getting the timing right on it, to stop bolt bounce, took about 3 weeks. So let’s delve into the build a little.
We bought the kits, consisting of instructions, a trip, a bolt hold, a pin or two, and a spring. The first part of the build was to notch the bolt, so the bolt hold would engage to prevent bolt bounce. Bolt bounce is when the bolt bounces back; this prevents the firing pin from fully contacting the rim of the 22, and you get light strikes. Also a pin needs to be added to the bolt to engage the trip. The instructions are pretty clear about this, so it was fairly easy.
The next part was a little more challenging. You need to take the fire control group, or FCG—e.g. all the trigger guts—apart and throw away the bolt hold open and the spring. There just isn’t any room. The mod to the housing was then drilled at a specific location—nope not giving that out. Those are the only mods, so far, to the housing.
Next the hammer needs a pin installed. This pushes the bolt lock down after firing and enables the bolt to move rearward. The hammer also needs a new sear notch, made to engage the sear area of the trip.
Now I’m sure that some of y’all ain’t gun folks and just like reading my prose. So, you’re probably saying to yourself, “The hell is a sear notch?” and, “Man that sounds hard.” Well, the sear notch on the trip basically seats on the new sear notch on the hammer and prevents it from firing until the trip is—well—tripped. As to the, “Man that sounds hard,” well, it kind of is. The measurements are VERY specific. If you are off, the gun just flat out will not work. In addition, I hit my finger with a hammer when seating the bolt pin, so there is some danger involved.
Okay, now you need to install all the new parts of the FCG housing. It’s not too hard, but does require some patience. By the way, guess what I don’t have?
Now we are ready to mate the receiver and the FCG housing. You need to pull the bolt back part way to do this. Once it’s all together, we can test it out.
Load up some rounds, and see what happens.
For about 3 weeks not a damn thing happened. The first round would fire, but no subsequent rounds would fire. The timing between the bolt locking piece and bolt being full forward was off, and it took a ton of experimentation to get it right. Most days I spent a few hours on it, then I had to shelve it before I hurled it against the wall.
Finally, I got it running right, but I wanted a select fire gun; well, more to the point the boss wanted a select fire gun, so off I went to figure that out. What I wound up doing was installing a modified AR15 safety into the FCG housing, which would engage or disengage the disconnector. If it was pushed forward, it would fire and let the disconnector work as it should and hold the hammer back. If it was pulled rearward it would capture the disconnector and allow full auto fire. This was the other mod to the housing, as you need to cut a bit out to allow the selector full movement. It also requires a hole be drilled through the trigger, for the pin that operates the disconnector .
So that’s it; the gun runs great, and it’s a complete joy to shoot. I guess the take away from this one—yeah I always have to have the last word—is this: 22’s are cool; full auto 22’s are cooler.
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