Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Magnesium AR-15 Light Weight Lower

The Mag Tactical Systems magnesium AR-15 lower is about 2oz lighter than one of my typical forged aluminum lowers. I know that does not sound like much and it is not, but if you can shave off a few ounces here and there on your AR15, the end result will be a lighter more maneuverable rifle. In my particular case I was wanting a light weight hunting rifle in the Modern Sporting Rifle configuration (MSR). So on my shopping list of parts for the 300 blackout build I went with the magnesium lower over the polymer lower. The polymer lowers just feel cheap to me even though they are lighter. The only issue I had assembling my MAG lower to the upper was the need to remove some material on the lower near the rear take down pin. This was not painful but it is nerve racking when you file on your gun. However, the end result was a perfectly fitted upper and lower with no movement between the two. Below is some comparison photos of the magnesium lower compared to a polymer, forged aluminum and billet aluminum receivers. The differences are subtle, but differences none the less. The most striking is the extra long trigger and hammer pins that came with the lower. I hear that the lower needed to be beefed up some at the pin holes. The end result is a hump where the pins pass through.














Tuesday, August 30, 2016

AR15 Bolt Bounce & Case Head Separation Caught on Video

While doing some high speed camera work for a video on the aluminum AR15 bolt carrier from Whiskey Arms, I had a malfunction in my 3-Gun Rifle. The brass case broke in half leaving the front part of the case in the chamber while extracting the rear portion. This problem is due to me using re-manufactured ammunition. All the brass was submitted by me for reloading. I can't say if all the brass I sent in was all mine because I pick up range brass all the time. So I do not blame the reloading company for this. However, for my multigun matches I now use only new manufactured ammo. Below is a photo of the brass as well as another cracked round I found before I shot it.



Also included in the video is high speed footage of AR-15 doing Bolt Bounce. This is a condition I created on my own by removing the weights inside the carbine buffer. I personally can not feel the bounce but my Casio EX-F1 picked up the movement. Additionally I show how the bolt should react upon closing by using a non altered buffer. By comparing the two slow-motion video clips you get a pretty good idea what bolt bounce is.



A similar thing happened to me while I was shooting from the open door of a helicopter. Fortunately the next round had lodged into the front part of the case making it easy to remove with only my knife. I was able to clear the malfunction and get back on the gun without having the helicopter land.







Wednesday, August 24, 2016

M9-22 Compared to the M9 / 92f Beretta - A Five Star 22 Pistol!

If you are familiar with my horror story on my Chiappa M9-22 you will be glad to know I have found a replacement. Not going to the Shot Shot makes it tough for me to search out new and interesting guns. So when a fellow youtuber told me about the Beretta M9-22 pistol, I had to take a look. Within 10 minutes of reading the specs and seeing probably the only video online of the gun (a useless video of the creator rambling and providing no real true info on the gun), I bought one from Buds GunShop. You can see my more in-depth video on this gun HERE (A MUCH BETTER VIDEO I MUST SAY) as well as some detailed pictures of this rimfire and the center fire version below.

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

When my M9-22 arrived I was immediately impressed. It felt exactly like my Beretta 92f 9mm pistol that I use in Production Division to shoot USPSA matches. If you have not seen USPSA or IPSC style shooting you can see some heart pounding first person shooter video on my YouTube channel. Anyway, right out of the box, the pistol felt the same in my hands with the exception of a few missing ounces in weight. Additionally the trigger feels the same with no changes in geometry. The decocker works just like any other but is a bit harder to disengage. It's unclear if it is just stiff due to the newness of the parts, or if its plastic construction has more friction than the metal parts found on the 9mm version. Either way, the controls work exactly the same. The take down lever works in the same manner as the 92 series pistols separating the slide, barrel and recoil spring from the frame. Different from my 92f 9mm model is a captured recoil spring with a plastic guide rod on the M9_22.

The gun itself is not made by Beretta, but made by Umarex who makes many other 22 clones, like the Colt 1911-22 and Smith & Wesson M&P22 pistols. My gun came with one 15 round magazine. I deem this a High Capacity mag since most .22lr pistols have only 10 round factory mags and require special UPGRADE KITS to get additional rounds in the magazine. At the time of this article, finding replacement magazines for the M9 22lr pistol might be challenging but we found some HERE.

Also a very note worthy aspect of the mags, or rather how the magazines fit into the frame of the pistol... If you shoot many rim-fire pistols you know how delicate the insertion of these magazines can be when putting one in the gun. The narrowness of the magazine in conjunction with the opening in the butt of the pistol make inserting a mag less fluid than with a center-fire pistol. The M9-22 does not have this problem. The 92 series pistols have a rather large pistol grip to accommodate the double stack magazines and this 22 version is nothing different. However, Beretta has made what I like to call an internal magwell inside the pistol grip. When looking at the opening for the magazine, it almost looks as if a full sized double stack magazine might fit but the opening narrows down quickly like funnel. This funnel or internal magwell allows this shooter to insert a fresh magazine much more quicker than traditional 22 pistols.

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

Sights on the M9-22 are just like what came on my 92f way back in 1989, a plain and simple 3-dot system. Just like my 9mm version, my new 22 caliber M9 would not hit for me. Mine shoots low and even after putting on a shorter front sight (the gun came with two front sights of different heights), mine still shot low. I guess my only option is to fit it with an adjustable rear sight or file down one of the plastic front sights.

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

At a quick glance the internals look very similar to the centerfire models but I'm sure they are not interchangeable. You can not put a 22 slide on a 9mm frame and vice versa. The barrels can not be switched between guns and the trigger can not be swapped. I'm sure that was done for safety reasons but I find the similarities between the 22 version and 9mm version the coolest. Even though the parts are not the same, it's clear that Umarex closely followed the 92 series design.

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon


M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

Another cool feature of the M9 22lr is that the grip panels are interchangeable with centerfire panels. This is a good thing since my 22 pistol came with what I can only assume was lesser quality plastic grips. Yes they were branded with the Beretta logo and all but the trigger bar spring on my gun that sits behind the right hand grip pushed my grip out and away from the gun. This created an unsightly gap that was quickly fixed by putting on an old pair of plastic grips I had sitting around. It should be noted if you plan to "bling up" your M9 with some after market grip screws, they appear to NOT be standard to the normal 92 series pistols. So you may need to find (if you can) some screws that are specifically for the 22 version.

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

M9_22, M9A1_22, 92FS_22, 92f, 92fs, M9, M9-22, M9A1-22, 92FS-22, Beretta, 9mm, .22, .22LR, trainer, 40S&W, Military, weapon

My pistol shot everything I put it in from inexpensive bulk ammo to the high dollar CCI Mini Mags. Only failures was a couple of misfires with the bulk ammo where the round failed to go off when the hammer fell. This is easily fixed with the pull of the double action trigger with the hammer down on the dud. The second pull of the trigger set off the rounds. Having the ability to pull the trigger again on a dud is a great big positive for me since I love to shoot the least expensive ammo I can find. My only regret is that my gun does not have a threaded barrel for a suppressor. Hopefully that will be an upgrade offered in the near future. Aside from my love of the Beretta 92, this is one of the best 22 pistols I have run across in a very long time.







Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Mosin Nagant Trigger Return Spring Install Instructions

If you own one of the many imported Mosin Nagant rifle & carbine variations, chances are you are experiencing a "floppy trigger". Just like low testosterone there is a cure for this flaccid condition except less embarrassing. The solution is a simple low cost TRIGGER RETURN SPRING KIT installed on the trigger pin. You can get your trigger return spring kit HERE. The procedure is easy assuming you can field strip / dis-assemble your rifle and put it back together. Below is an instructional video showing the procedure and noting some of the pitfalls you may encounter (if any). Additionally, detailed photos with step by step instructions can be found here on this page. Installation of the spring kit should in no way affect the weight of your trigger pull. It's a simple non permanent solution to an annoying problem that owners of this fantastic surplus rifle have to deal with.

STEP 1: With rifle unloaded, remove the bolt by opening the bolt and pull to rear with trigger depressed.

STEP 2: If present, remove cleaning rod by unscrewing.

STEP 3: Depress and slide off both barrel bands towards the muzzle.

STEP 4: Once the barrel bands are off, you can remove the top hand guard.

STEP 5: Remove the screw on the underside of the rifle just in front of the magazine and the screw on top at the rear of the receiver.

STEP 6: Remove the magazine and trigger guard.

STEP 7: Remove the barreled receiver from the wooden stock.

STEP 8: Remove the screw in front of the trigger. If yours is tight, heat may be needed to break it free.

STEP 9: Remove the trigger pin. Depending on your rifle, this pin may only go in/out in one direction. Remove the trigger and sear.

STEP 10: Install the curved washer.

STEP 11: Place the sear and trigger in place and re-install the screw.

STEP 12: Take the included fishing line and loop it through the spring.
STEP 13: Install trigger pin halfway through the receiver and trigger leaving room for the spring. Snake the two ends of the fishing line through the trigger from front to rear and pull the spring through until you can push the trigger pin into place through the spring. Discard the fishing line.









Wednesday, July 27, 2016

How to Use a Collet Bullet Puller

Reloading ammunition or "rolling your own" takes a little a little time but can be a big savings when compared to buying new ammo all the time. However, attention to detail is paramount. A tiny mistake could cause damage to your weapon, injury to the shooter or even death. However, attention to detail can negate these issues. However, the more subtle things may not cause injury or death. More likely you will just run into failure to chamber or fire issues with you home grown ammo.

In this video I show one of the pitfalls of NOT properly resizing the shoulder on a rifle case. Over time my resizing die had backed out of position with the lock nut coming loose. That tiny bit of movement caused the case to not get properly sized and caused the shoulder to not line up with the chamber. The product was a finished round that would not fully chamber and would not fire. Not too mention I had to "motar" the AR15 rifle to get the round out of the chamber.

Now I had a handful of ammo that was useless. The solution was to pull each bullet, pour the powder out and resize the brass. For pulling the bullet I used a collet puller seen in the video. They are inexpensive and simple to use. It's just a time consuming process.

Now when I start a big reload session of rifle ammo, I take the resized case and test it in the rifle I will be using. If the resized brass case does not fit, something is wrong with my sizing die and I make adjustments. This tiny little step will save you hours of suffering.

As always, I'm glad to share and allow you the opportunity to learn from my mistakes.



Monday, July 25, 2016

Beretta M9-22 10rd Mag Conversion into 15rd Magazine

I recently acquired a Beretta M9-22lr pistol. This pistol is a Umarex replica of the 92FS / M9 handguns found in the US Military. I shoot a 92F in 9mm on a pretty regular basis and when this pistol came out I was very excited to get may hands on one. To start with the gun actually feels and functions like the 92 series center-fire pistol I use. All the controls are the same as well as field stripping procedures. This is a no brainer for training with low cost 22 rim-fire and seamless transition back to my 9mm version. Below is a detailed review on the M9-22.



In addition, the M9-22 comes with 15 round magazines! This is very rare for a 22 caliber pistol to come from the factory with more than 10 round mags. There are many after market kits you can buy for various 22 pistols that allow additional rounds in your 22 magazines (YOU CAN FIND THEM HERE), but it is a nice change of pace to see the manufacturer provide these direct from the factory. However, in some states 15 bullets in your gun is more than the law will allow. So Beretta offers 10 round magazines for these oppressed states. If you have some Beretta factory 10 round magazines, chances are the basepad is glued together and not allowing disassembly. This can be a problem for cleaning dirty magazines. The steps below will help guide you to overcome the glue and disassemble your magazine for cleaning.

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00
NOTE THE GLUE OOZING OUT OF THE CRACKS (SEE ABOVE)

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00
USING A HEATGUN, APPLY HEAT TO THE PLASTIC BASEPAD. DO NOT GET THE GUN TOO CLOSE OR TOO HOT SO THAT IT MELTS/DEFORMS THE PLASTIC. YOU ONLY WANT TO HEAT THE BASEPAD ENOUGH TO LOOSEN THE GLUE AND ALLOW THE ROUND PIN IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BASEPAD TO BE DEPRESSED (SEE ABOVE)

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00
ONCE THE GLUE IS HEATED AND BECOMES LOOSE, YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO DEPRESS THE ROUND PIN TO WHERE THE TAB ON THE BACK OF THE BASEPAD WILL STICK UP (SEE ABOVE)

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00
NOW YOU CAN SLIDE OFF THE BASEPAD TOWARDS THE FRONT OF THE MAGAZINE TUBE. TAKE CARE WITH THE SPRING AS TO NOT LET IT GET AWAY FROM YOU SINCE IT IS UNDER PRESSURE. (SEE ABOVE)

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00, Field Strip, Cleaning
ONCE THE BASEPAD COMES OFF YOU CAN REMOVE THE SPRING AND SPRING RETAINER CONTAINING THE SPACER (THE ALUMINUM TUBE GLUED TO THE SPRING RETAINER). AT THIS POINT YOU CAN NOW EFFECTIVELY CLEAN YOUR MAGAZINE AND ITS COMPONENTS. IT WOULD ALSO BE HELPFUL TO SCRAPE OFF AS MUCH GLUE AS POSSIBLE WHILE YOU CAN. (SEE ABOVE)

Beretta M9-22, M9, 22LR, Basepad, 92f, 92FS, 90-Two, Trainer, DIY, Hi-Cap, Capacity, Nictaylor00, modification, alter, restriction
IF YOU LIVE IN A STATE THAT DOES NOT HAVE MAGAZINE CAPACITY RESTRICTIONS, THIS IS WHERE YOU CAN REMOVE THE SPACER AND ALLOW AN ADDITIONAL 5 ROUNDS TO BE LOADED INTO THE MAGAZINE. WHILE THE GLUE IS STILL HOT, PLY OFF THE SPACER AND REASSEMBLE THE MAGAZINE WITHOUT THE SPACER. YOU SHOULD NOW BE ABLE TO FIT 15 CARTRIDGES IN THE MAGAZINE.(SEE ABOVE)