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Nordic AR22: Ruger 10/22 Conversion Kit

Note: This page is NOT intended to be a definitive technical page about the 10/22, the AR-15 or the Nordic AR22 Kit. I am not qualified to do that. I just wanted to show some nice pics of the build process and add some commentary here and there to clarify some of the steps. Following the pics you will find a description of the parts used and a source table. My son Ian and I did most of the work together - but I did the trickier metal working stuff.

Nordic's assembly instructions for the AR22 receiver kit. NOTE: I added comments about Allen wrench sizes and also about shimming the receiver (.035" indicates OUR particular gun)

Most of the parts laid out for inspection. The stock 10/22 looks so.... World War II. I should have used a lighter back ground for the photography....

Before and after trimming the Nordic fore arm adaptor to eliminate the "AR Gap" that prevents the Yankee Hill Machine fore arm nut and arm from screwing nearly flush. We used a hacksaw and a file, followed by increasing grits of sandpaper on a sanding block.

This pic shows the original large AR Gap, and the improved version. If you like an authentic gap there, skip this step.

Ian checks the pull on the OEM trigger using our nifty Lyman digital gage - it was about 800 pounds if I remember correctly, and very gritty.

The aluminum Tactical Solutions barrel shank comes slightly oversized and must be sanded to the correct OD for a snug fit into the Ruger receiver.

Ian masks off the barrel to prevent damaging the finish during handling.

This particular barrel required that all of the anodizing be removed before it would fit - about 0.002 inches removed. We left a little extra coating right at the shoulder to help the barrel "snug up" as it went all the way home into the receiver. We used a rubber mallet and VERY light tapping, making sure that the bottom flat area was aligned with the V block ledge on the receiver. We also made sure the extractor slot lined up with the extractor.

The Hornet teflon recoil buffer is installed. After a couple of hundred rounds this was really smashed, so we had to cut it out... we decided to go back to the Ruger steel pin for now, until we can find a tougher buffer (nylon?) 

The new Hornet trigger assembly went in next. It had a very pleasant, crisp 5 pound pull, with no over travel. Note the Hornet mag release.

Ian installs the Nordic rail and the Nordic Upper onto the Ruger receiver with the four small 6-48 scope screws. We left out the Loctite for now. Later these screws will get a little dab of Blue.

The Upper is complete....

... and so is the Lower. The gap between the Upper and Lower is normal. Getting the Ruger receiver to mate with the Nordic parts was a little tricky, but it gets easier after a few times. The Lower has nylon alignment screws front and back to lock the Ruger receiver solidly into the Nordic receiver. The fore arm adaptor is held to the rear parts with two large Allen screws. The threaded YHM adaptor went on with blue Loctite.

The CAA grip contour did not match exactly - we filed and sanded the front corner to clear the trigger guard.

Your AR-15 grip screw "MAY POSSIBLY" contact the trigger housing as shown, preventing the grip from seating fully. If so, install washers under the head or shorten the screw. Ours was fine when installed.

Next we installed the CAA telescoping stock. The notched retaining ring nut must be secured with a hook spanner or a special AR tool. Don't pound it tight with a punch, even a brass one.

The Yankee Hill Machine retaining ring and fore arm went on next. Since there is no gas tube like in a real AR, alignment is up to the installer. After adding blue Loctite to the adaptor threads, we made sure that the accessory rail locations (pre-drilled and tapped) were located at 0 and 90 degrees, and let the gun sit undisturbed overnight for the thread sealer to set up. The ring nut does not need to be torqued tight - just add some Loctite and snug it down.

Next the cheapo Chinese holosight goes on the rail. We found that the sight was too low for use with the adjustable cheek piece on the stock, so later we added a 3/4 inch riser. Take a close look at the barrel and you will see it drooping. Time for a fix. According to Nordic, all Ruger receivers are different, and you may or may not experience this. Fortunately our barrel was aligned left to right, and just needed to be raised.

First we tried installing an adjustable Skeeter's Modified V Block. That helped a little but didn't really fix the problem. A search of Rimfire Central found the cure;

We used a laminated or "peelable" brass shim, which was actually an aircraft part from John's junk box, left over from his days as an aircraft mechanic. First we loosened the lower barrel bolt and moved the receiver and barrel upwards until it was perfectly centered in the end of the fore arm. Then we measured the gap below the V block - it was 0.035 inches on this gun. After trimming and peeling layers, we installed the brass shim and retightened the barrel bolt. The next time we strip the rifle, we will glue the shim in place with some adhesive so it can't get lost.

Another view of the shim repair. With the barrel centered, we could then install the YHM end cap to fill the large "hole" in the end of the fore arm.

Laminated Shims Just for your education....


Within the limitations of the scope, this rifle is very accurate and an absolute hoot to shoot. It really likes Mini-Mags, but it digests most copper plated bulk ammo fairly well. Most problems we have are due to aftermarket high capacity mags rather than ammo choice.

We have found that the TacSol muzzle break likes to loosen - it's a good idea to check it by hand every few mags, with the gun UNLOADED and chamber empty.

Parts List for THIS Nordic 10/22 build

Click the Hyperlink to take you to the product manufacturer (or sometimes to a vendor site). All product descriptions are directly quoted from the manufacturer or vendor. Where I bought the part What I paid, not MSRP
Nordic AR-1022 Kit at Gunkings.com (Note: Nordic Products, the manufacturer, does not have a firearms specific page, as of 06/08.)
  • A new and unique stock for your Ruger® 10/22®
  • Doesn’t just look like an AR-15®, it looks AND feels like an AR-15! In fact, this stock is ergonomically identical to your AR-15 rifle.
  • Drop in assembly, no gunsmithing required.
  • Accepts any AR-15 Butt stock, hand grip and Free Float tube, as well as any factory or after market barrels made for the 10/22
  • Excellent for Training!
  • 3 pieces included: Main Body, Scope Rail & Forearm Adaptor
  • Gunkings $225
    CCA AR-15 Pistol Grip, 6 Piece Interchangeble  6 piece interchangeable pistol grip for M16/AR15 and similar type firearms. Grip incorporates multiple finger groove and palm swell inserts (3 each) allowing the user to customize their grip to fit all hand sizes for maximum comfort and control.

    JOHN'S COMMENT: I handled a beautiful AR-15 varmint rifle at a gun shop with these CAA parts installed, and they felt wonderful and looked great. They are a little more costly than the junky AR "toy" parts, but not nearly as much as the hardcore tactical parts. They are solidly designed, have no sharp exposed edges, they work smoothly and have a very nice tactile feel. Made in Israel.

    Gun show $40
    CAA AR-15 6 Position Collapsable Stock w/ Tube Ass'y NTOA (National Tactical Officers Association) tested and recommended.
    Six-position collapsible stock with rubber non-slip recoil pad and skeletonized design features a Picatinny rail and storage compartment for CR123 batteries (4 total) or other small items. Ambidextrous design is easily achieved by switching the battery compartment lid and Picatinny rail. Two ultrasonically welded metal inserts allow for the addition of optional quick release sling adaptors (PBSS).
    Cheaper Than Dirt $72
    CAAs AR-15 Adjustable Cheek Piece Clamps onto CBS Picatinny rail
    Height adjustment for eye alignment with optics
    Horizontal adjustment along Picatinny rail
    Made from reinforced polymer

    Gun show $25
    YHM AR-15 Customizable Free Float Forearm, YHM-9430A, 9.675 inch, Specter Length Our customizable tubes come in 3 lengths: Carbine, Specter and Rifle. These tubes are a great addition to any firearm just as they are. They feature slotted heat vents, mounting point for our Bipod Stud (YHM-262) and they accept our Forearm End Caps (YHM-9484A or YHM-9484B sold separately). Each tube is drilled and tapped at 45 degree angles to accept our custom rails at 8 different positions.

    JOHN'S COMMENTS: I didn't like the "Radical Tactical" look of the four rail forearms, but I did need to be able to add a rail here and there for future upgrades like a fore end grip. This new slotted aluminum forearm is drilled every 45 degrees and is ready for accessory rails in lengths from a couple of inches to full length. It will accept a sling swivel stud so I can easily mount a bipod. The forearm is sold through Yankee Hill only as a kit with rails - I found a mid-length model (available separately with no rails).

    Live to shoot $85
    YHM AR-15 Forearm End Cap, YHN-9484-B, 1.125 inch ID Use these screw-in end caps to dress up and provide protection for the end of your YHM forearm. Does not interfere with the free floating of your barrel and helps keep out debris. Drilled to allow for proper heat venting. Gunkings $16
    (Qty 2) YHM Low Profile Rail Cover Black Long, YHM-9701 These rubber panels snap on tightly to add comfort and protection to your YHM railed forearm. Available in 3 different lengths and in 2 different colors, Black or Coyote Brown.   $20
    10/22 ACCESSORIES:    
    Hornet Custom "B" Trigger Group for 10/22 "The Hornet Trigger Guard Assembly includes these special replacement parts:
    • Hand polished and honed Hammer for a light, smooth, trigger release
    • Lightweight Trigger Return Spring and Custom Radius Trigger Return Plunger polished for smoothness
    • Hornet Custom Sear and Disconnector honed for minimal positive engagement consistent with safety.
    • Automatic Bolt Release eliminating two-hand operation - just pull back and release
    • Hornet Custom "B" Extended Magazine Release - push forward and the magazine easily drops away - no more convoluted pinching to operate the release.
    • Custom hammer, sear, and disconnector pins to eliminate most of the trigger play.
    • All parts are fitted, lubricated, and tested

    JOHN'S COMMENT: Unlike the other three trigger suppliers for the 10/22, Hornet uses the stock Ruger housing and parts. modifies and tunes them, and offers them for a "C note". Rather than buying aftermarket internal parts and having to install and tune them myself, I opted for a complete, range tested replacement trigger group (polymer, like the one in my 10/22) with all the upgrades, including a custom trigger return plunger, over travel screw, auto bolt release, and fitted action pins (my OEM mag release pin fell out if you turned the housing sideways!). Hornet sometimes offers up to $30 for your old serviceable Ruger trigger assembly.

    Hornet Products $90
    Hornet Over-Travel Trigger Option This is an Over-Travel trigger option for the Custom-B to Custom-S trigger group. A pre-set over-travel adjustable set screw improves accuracy by limiting movement after the trigger release, plus it has a quicker reset and eliminates trigger play after the release. It is primarily a feature for target-shooters. Color same as that of the base trigger group, black or silver. Red trigger color available separately at additonal cost. Not available as a separate item. Hex key included. Hornet Products $10
    Hornet Custom Recoil Bolt Buffers (pr) Our solid white Teflon bolt buffer replaces the standard factory steel pin (Ruger Part #B-48) located at the rear of the receiver. Eliminates annoying bolt cycling noise during shooting when the bolt slams into the factory stop pin - also reduces impact stresses on the receiver. Easy installation, no special tools required. Drift-in from right side-to-left. Same S/H for multiple buffer orders.

    Note: For rimfire 22 LR and high-velocity LR. Not for use with .17HM2 Mach2 or .17HMR or Ruger 10/22 Magnum. Lifetime warranty.

    Hornet Products $9
    Tactical Solutions 10/22 22LR Barrel, 16.5 inches, Matte Black Threaded The Tac Sol rimfire barrel is an ultra lightweight replacement barrel for the Ruger 10/.22 semi automatic rifle. Each 10/.22 barrel is precision machined from solid aircraft aluminum
    • Lengths and Weights:  16.5”
    • Liner: Premium ‘button’ rifled chrome moly
    • Twist Rate: 1 in 16
    • Colors Available: Red, Blue, Purple, Olive Drab Green, Black, Gray
    • Matte Finish is available for Olive Drab Green and Black colors
    • 10/.22 barrels are produced with flutes and are available with a threaded end (Threaded end available in Matte OD Green and Matte Black only

    JOHN'S COMMENT: This barrel gets great reviews, is accurate and very light, looks WAY cool, and it's threaded so I can add a suppressor when I finally acquire one. It has a button rifled match chrome moly liner and match chamber, so I can't shoot Stingers because of the extra case length, but with the factory recommended Mini-Mags (my favorite "affordable" ammo - my CZ453 loves it) the TacSol barrel is capable of better than 0.5 MOA accuracy. This barrel was really hard to find - most vendors indicated that it was back-ordered, but Cables had it in stock.... the downside being that I had to pay sales tax ;(

    Cabela's $219
    Tactical Solutions 10/22 Compensator, Matte Black The Tactical Solutions Compensator is precision machined from solid aircraft aluminum and is type III anodized. The Tactical Solutions light weight compensator is engineered to reduce muzzle jump, recoil, and to assist in faster target acquisition. Cabela's $40
    Skeeter's Modified V-Block Rimfire Technologies' for Ruger 10/22 custom modified V-Block convenience for the barrel shim kit. The above is now a custom precision manufactured product (not Ruger's) of Aircraft aluminum, and two versions: one for Ruger 10/22 and one for Ruger 77/22. Exclusive feature to marry the barrel to the receiver solid like it was custom threaded along with the receiver, functionally the same thing - because accuracy demands solidness! New! The part is redesigned, and still adjustable for conversion, but is now a precision part, and useful for more precision from a Ruger 10/22, scrap the threading, this is as good, but less expensive too! Gunkings $24
    Harris HBLM-S, 9-13 Inch Swivel Bipod with Notched Legs Series "M": A new version of the original Leg Notch Bipod. The legs eject by spring action. Height settings in 1" increments. Series "S": Rotates to either side for instant leveling on uneven ground. Hinged base has tension adjustment and buffer springs to eliminate tremor or looseness. They are otherwise similar to non-rotating Series. Available for ALL models except the "H" model.

    JOHN'S COMMENT: IMHO this is the best commercial bipod out there, and with the PodLock it is fast and easy to level and lock into position. The notched legs with spring loaded latches are solid and quick to deploy. I already had this bipod for my CZ 453.... the addition of a rail mounted swivel adapter lets it work on the Nordic 10/22. Rather than using a fixed swivel stud, I wanted to be able to adjust the bipod position along a rail for best balance and looks. NOTE: DO NOT ORDER FROM UWS - they are a rip off.

    E. Arthur Brown $84
    PodLock for Harris Bipods Description from E Arthur Brown: The Harris "S" type bipod allows you to tilt or cant your rifle side to side to level your crosshairs. It's a great system. However, the friction tensioning knob is hard to adjust with your fingers. The new PodLock™ Tension Lever replaces the friction tensioning knob to give you much better control and leverage. The PodLoc lever can also be released and re-positioned after you've adjusted it. The PodLock installs easily on all "S" type Harris bipods (sorry it does NOT fit clone bipods).

    E. Arthur Brown $24 ($20 w/ bipod purchase)
    ProMag PM108 Harris Bipod Rail Adaptor The adapter allows the mounting of sling swivels to rifles equipped with Picatinny or quad rails. Use PM003 on AR-15 rifles and carbines to attach adapter and sling swivel. Constructed of hard anodized aircraft grade aluminum. Area 51 Tactical $20
    Sightmark Laser Dual Shot Reflex Sight at Binoculars Best Buy. 33mm x 24mm aperture, 1 MOA click adjustable reticles, 2 MOA diameter laser dot. The Laser Dual Shot™ Reflex Sight features an accompanying laser in perfect parallel precision for the quickest moving targets. This Reflex Sight can be used from 0 to infinity, and can be used in conjunction with each other or on their own. The Laser Dual Shot™ Reflex Sight features a larger viewing area with 4 reticle types.

    JOHN'S COMMENT: This is a Chinese knockoff of the more expensive holosights, with a red laser added to the right side. It doesn't have the build quality of a real scope, but it is cheap, apparently well made, and full of features, including 4 different reticles. The main battery compartment can be finicky to use - it sometimes tries to unscrew when you turn the brightness knob CCW. It has a 3 year warranty. Also, it really needs some impact protection - if I can't locate a wing mount for it, I will try to fabricate something.

    Gun show $85
    ProMag PM066 Picatinny Scope Riser Rail The scope riser allows optics to be 3/4" of an inch. The riser ensures proper scope height without the need for extra high rings. The riser is quick detachable, held in place by a full length spring locking bar with two thumb screws. Accepts Weaver and STANAG rings on its Picatinny rail. Constructed of hard anodized aircraft grade aluminum.

    JOHN'S COMMENT: The thumb screws are handy for QD, but they are overly large and dorky looking.

    Area 51 Tactical $16
    Viking Tactics Padded Sling VTAC-MK2 Made for collapsible stock (AR-15 type rifles). The Viking Tactics Sling is quick, versatile, dynamic and most importantly simple! The VTAC sling is instantly adjustable to improve your shooting position, allows shooting from weak side shoulder, secures the carbine during handgun transitions, and allows hands-free movement in difficult surroundings. Unlike most slings, the Viking Tactics slings are fully adjustable while in use. You won’t have to take a break from the action to adjust your sling. The Viking Tactics sling isn’t just a carry strap, it’s full range of adjustability will enhance retention when you need your hands free, it is also one of the only tactical slings that can be used as an adjustable shooting sling. A tight sling will enhance any shooting position.

    Viking Tactics VTAC Video

    Tactical Store.com $29
    Daniel Defense Rail Mount QD Swivel Attachment Point and an extra DD QD swivel.

    JOHN'S COMMENT: One swivel plugs directly into either of the two side holes of the CCA stock, and the front attachment point rides on a 3 inch Picatinny rail, at the 9:00 position on the forearm. The swivels are limited in rotation so the sling won't tangle.

    Daniel Defense $61
    LaRue Tactical Discreet Soft Case Help nosey on-lookers mind their own business, as you head to the range. This discreet padded case is capable of securely carrying fully-assembled AR-type rifles up to 18 inches in barrel length (with collapsible stocks). MOLLE webbing provides a number of hard-points to secure your weapon with the provided Velcro tie-down straps. A removable padded separator protects your weapon from rubbing the magazine pockets and other gear stowed on the other side.

    Five integral magazine pockets easily hold two USGI 30-round mags each, giving you a 300-round capacity. A zippered 8 ˝" x 7" security pocket holds paperwork, manuals, small targets, keys, etc. with added MOLLE webbing to attach extra mag and utility pouches. A zippered 5 ˝" x 7" widowed pocket is perfect for range permits, ATF forms, etc.

    The exterior has dual-zippered closure, with built-in handles that have a Velcro roll-over flap, for fatigue-free carrying of heavier loads. The comfortable 2"-wide adjustable shoulder strap extends from flush, to 48".

    JOHN'S COMMENT: this is an exceptionally well made and satisfying case.

    LaRue Tactical $110

    Technical LINKS related to this build:

    Nordic Components AR22 Teaser - RimfireCentral.com Lots of technical information from supplier Gunking, and also from regular folks building an Ultimate AR-10/22 using the Nordic kit.

    Buying the nordic kit, please post pics and info of some builds!!! - AR15.com Forums Some great pics of builds.

    Nordic "Notch" Quick Fix - RimfireCentral.com An easy and inexpensive solution for plugging the gap at the trigger guard.

    Tactical Solution Barrel Accuracy Test - Mizzou Mule Guns "The 5 shot group < at 50 yards > yielded .210 CTC using CCI Mini Mags"

    Tactical Solutions barrel - extraction problems - RimfireCentral.com Some cures for sticky extraction.

    Tactical Solutions barrel installation thread - RimfireCentral.com Installation tips - do NOT sand your receiver!

    Tac Sol Lightweight Bull Barrels for the Ruger 10/22 - Gunblast.com review Great early review of these barrels at a great website.

    RimfireCentral.com - THE 10/22 resource Home Base for everything 10/22, lots of really great information.

    RimfireCentral.com - Tactical 10/22's Forum dedicated to building custom 10/22s. Most of these guys have much more money than sense.

    Ruger 10/22 Tech Pages at Gunsmoke.com Some interesting articles and tests.

    Assault Weapons: Evil Black Rifles (or perhaps not) Just what is an EBR anyway? This is an excellent review of what makes a true military assault rifle and also, in the eye of the mis-informed public, why semi-auto civilian copies are so "bad".

    • ""Assault rifles" are being demonized by many politicians, media-types, and other anti-gun folk who actually have no idea what it is they are demonizing. Most people who hear the truth are quite surprised to find out just how off-base and factually wrong these nay-sayers are."

    Page updated Sep 22, 2008