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Another Use for .308 Brass

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I love it when different facets of my hobbies come together. On another forum recently the subject of speedloaders for tube-magazine .22 rifles came up and the thread starter mentioned using a .308 round cut in half for a "funnel" to load .22 rounds into the rifle outer tube. I had plenty of .308/7.62 brass on hand, scrounged a few different types of 3/8" tubing, a foam earplug to cushion the nose of the round, and made some prototypes to give away to my 4H smallbore shooters. Seems to work well.
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Usually gravity sliding, moreso than dumping, with the rifle held upside down at around a 45 degree angle. We advise the kids to gently let the rounds load, rather than a straight drop that might damage the noses or even set off a round, The rounds just slide down the inside of the rifle outer tube much like they would if individually loaded, and then the inner tube is re-inserted. The foam earplug is placed in the end of the tube where the base of the 308 brass is. When the rounds are loaded nose-first into the speedloader, the nose of the first round is cushioned by the foam.

The way it works is that 10 rounds are loaded nose-first into the tube, thru the end of the speedloader with the hitch pin (after the pin has been removed). This can be done at any time, rather than during a match when others are waiting. After the hitch pin has been reinserted, the shooter removes the rifle inner magazine tube, inserts the nose of the cut off .308 round while holding the rifle at a 45, then removes the hitch pin. The rounds slide down the tube into the rifle. Reinsert the pin in the loader then reinsert the inner mag tube into the rifle and lock it. There's no mechanism or springs of any sort inside the speedloader tube.

Why a speedloader? When we have 4H CMP Sporter Rifle shooters on the line and the command "With an open or closed bolt and an empty chamber, LOAD" is given, most will take 5-10 seconds to load a magazine into the rifle. (Bolt action rifles without magazines are not loaded at this point as they will load single rounds within the time limits of the match). Then everyone (we usually have around 20 kids on the line) has to wait while the "tubers" take a minute or two to load their ammunition round by round. The speedloader seems to make things more efficient.

Here's an exploded view with some of the other endcap options I considered. Only part of the construction that is not shown is the drill and bit to drill a hole thru the brass and tube for the hitch pin, and either epoxy or superglue gel to glue the end pieces on.

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