Every firearm owner wishes they could shoot and train without limits, but recent ammo prices and availability, range fees, and other economical obstacles continuously affect the opportunity to pursue their passion. It’s just not as simple as it was years ago, when firearms, whether for sport or hunting purposes, were considered a part of everyday life. One solution to this is the simple installation of the CMMG AR Conversion kit. This is a drop-in conversion bolt, with included magazine, that will get you putting .22lr downrange in just minutes! In the desire to provide information to the consumer on this product, it was tested in a direct-impingement AR15, fitted with a mid-length gas system, free-floated barrel, collapsible stock, and EOTech sight.
The kit tested was the Bravo model. Now, expectations were actually quite low, I’ll admit. I was prepared for jams, mis-feeds, mis-fires, and failures to eject. I had a healthy variety of .22lr ammo; everything from budget, target, hunting and the costlier premium ammo from a multitude of manufacturers. Given my extensive firearms knowledge, I decided the only unbiased way of reviewing the product would be to have someone with a different perspective fire a few hundred rounds, while I observed, and took notes of every comment and reaction…but more importantly, I had the duty of providing plenty of loaded magazines! With that, I elected my wife to run the actual test, which would give me a great perspective from a female’s point of view, with familiarization of the platform.
The test was begun by loading 10 rounds of every different type/brand of ammunition on hand into the magazine. Five rounds would be fired in slow fire, and the last five would be fired in rapid mode. The test would conclude with a re-shoot of those rounds we found borderline acceptable, or unpleasant, and those we felt were the best performers.
Federal American Eagle, Winchester Super X, CCI Mini-Mag all performed well, with no jams, or failures to eject.
CCI LR22, CCI STINGER, CCI LR HP, and Winchester Western all performed exceptionally well! There were many ‘wows,’ and praise as to how smooth it cycled, over and over. Accuracy also seemed to be slightly better with the CCI brand ammunition.
Remington 22 Target, Remington 22 Viper, and Remington Thunderbolt came in as the most unpleasant, in regards to smell, perceived recoil, gas blowback, and particulate that seemed to foul shooter’s face. Recoil on the Viper was also noted as being the most intense, however, still only a fraction of the recoil of your standard .223/5.56.
Magazines where then loaded to the max, and fired from different shooting positions, and while moving. Not one mechanical issue was noted, and there were zero failures one could classify as ‘catastrophic’ in a self-defense, combat, or training situation.
The overall impression was a very positive one. The product was very simple to install. Anyone with a very primitive understanding of the AR system can easily open their rifle, remove the original bolt carrier group, and simply drop the CMMG Conversion Kit right in! No tools are required. The system is low-noise, low-recoil, and can easily reduce your investment on ammunition. 50 rounds of decent .223/5.56 will run you about $25 on today’s market; while a box of .22LR will set you back five dollars on the average, and weigh significantly less. The round is already a proven small game load and plinkster, and in addition to the AR’s versatility plus the adaptability to smaller framed shooters, you can count on this add-on being perfect for youth and smaller statured shooters looking to spice up their training with some ‘tactical’ flavor.
The only downside was the general foul nature of .22lr ammunition. It does ultimately mean that you will be cleaning more often than usual, but the lower muzzle velocities will prolong the life of any profile barrel, military or commercial.
Lower priced ammunition will only result in positive outcomes; more range time, training, and most importantly; safe fun on the range that any aged and size shooter can appreciate. The CMMG AR Conversion kit is a great tool seasoned vets can add to their training regiment, as well as instructors, parents, and significant others, who are looking to maintain that edge, teach a new student who has never handled a firearm, or introduce their family member to a lifetime of responsible shooting.
Hunting Team Leader