Randy Luth put the first rail on an AR-15 rifle. He also showed the planet how to hunt with a Modern Sporting Rifle. Randy is one of the most quietly influential people in the modern gun world. In addition to being a gun-bodging savant, he is also a really nice guy. Not to mention, his company, Luth-AR, regularly delivers excellent products, like the MCA-22 chassis for the Ruger 10/22.
The Luth-AR MCA-22 Chassis
Luth-AR offers a bewildering range of gun parts and accessories. His custom barrels, receivers, fire controls, forearms, and sundry widgets reliably make good guns better. With the introduction of the new Modular Chassis Assembly-22 (MCA-22), Randy’s company is delving into the rimfire world.
The chiseled CAG operator settled in behind his customized precision sniper rig as the rest of the world faded away. Pervasive bugs, Helmand’s legendary penetrating heat, and the discomfort of a thousand annoying little things disappeared in the face of impeccable personal discipline and a zillion hours behind the gun. Through his refined tactical glass, the man saw the face of evil incarnate.
Abdul Muhammad Abdus Salam absentmindedly straightened his bejeweled eye patch. Three gorgeous Sports Illustrated swimsuit models wept openly in the background. Chained as they were to the bumper of Abdus Salam’s jingle truck, the trio of smoking hot women rightly believed all hope was lost.
The operator was fuzzy on how exactly three voluptuous American girls had fallen into the nefarious clutches of the planet’s most bloodthirsty ISIS terrorist. Regardless, he settled his reticle on the fat man’s greasy chest. Measured his breathing. And took up the slack in his trigger.
Soon, he and the grateful coeds would be winging it back to safety in the belly of an MH47G Chinook. It was just another day in the life of a genuine American hero.
Who am I kidding? In all of human history, only one other guy and I have ever claimed to have rescued gorgeous girls from the clutches of an evil supervillain. And we’re both pathological liars.
Sadly, that very seldom happens out here in the real world. Particularly to 56-year-old gun writers who haven’t been in really good shape since the Clinton administration. However, if ever you need to practice your girl-saving sniper skills without breaking the bank in the process, the Luth-AR MCA-22 is your go-to iron.
The Ruger 10/22 is the most popular rimfire rifle in the world. Developed in 1964 by Bill Ruger and Harry Sefried, the 10/22 hit the coveted sweet spot. Simple, reliable, versatile, and cool. The 10/22 started many a shooter down the path toward competition, recreation, hunting or military service. As of 2015, there had already been seven million copies produced.
One of the reasons for the 10/22’s popularity is its price. Bill and Harry designed the weapon for manufacturability. Ruger churns these things out in such quantity that consumers can take advantage of an economy of scale.
The first copies cost $54.50 in 1965. That would be about $523 in today’s money. Nowadays, however, innovative mass production techniques mean the MSRP for the base model rifle is only $369.
The mystical combination of reasonable price, accuracy, and availability has placed this nifty little rifle in countless gun safes, bedroom closets, and pickup trucks.
The 10/22 is a cool rifle, but out of the box, it is really just a plinker. It features a basic walnut stock that is one size fits most, and the feature set is fairly pedestrian. The stock version of the 10/22 is the Ford Fiesta of guns. However, the humble 10/22 is capable of so much more.
Why The MCA-22?
In the past, the artisans at Luth-AR have used the centerfire AR rifle as their artistic medium. I’ve built up a couple of black rifles using Luth-AR parts and found them to be well above your standard fare. The ergonomics are well-reasoned, and the engineering sublime. They took this same compulsion for perfection and poured it into the MCA-22.
The MCA-22 was developed in concert with Roth Performance. Mark Roth made his name designing accessories and aftermarket upgrades for shotguns. There is a lot of common mechanical DNA between these two broad efforts.
The MCA-22 is a drop-in fit for standard Ruger 10/22 actions and compatible clones. Likewise, the stock includes a removable polymer insert to accommodate standard barrels. With the insert removed, the stock will rock heavy bull barrels or integrally-suppressed units so long as the overall diameter is 0.92 inches or less.
The forearm insert pops out easily as needed, and the stock is formed from high-strength, glass-filled nylon. In addition, the ancillary bits are 6061 aluminum or steel. The stock alone weighs 2.09 pounds and optimally interfaces with the human form.
Fitting the MCA-22 to You
The goose-neck pistol grip includes bilateral palm swells for use by either hand. The cheekpiece is readily adjustable for comb height and includes serrations so you can keep track of its precise location. Correspondingly, the stock and pistol grip are nicely checkered.
The cheekpiece offers .75 inches worth of travel fore and aft and another 2 inches up and down. Similarly, the butt pad will adjust an inch vertically. The length of pull runs from 11.25 to 15.75 inches. All adjustments are positive and incremental. Everything is held in place via generous thumbscrews, so no tools are required for a perfect fit.
Accessory slots are M-Lok standard. There are five underneath for a grip or bipod and one on each side for lights or lasers. The front of the forearm comes pre-drilled with a dome sling stud locator hole should you wish to finish drilling and thread it.
Assembly is a piece of cake. It took me maybe five minutes to seat my action.
Accessorizing the 10/22 and MCA-22 Chassis
The Ruger 10/22 comes from the factory threaded for an included scope mount. I already had my favorite stainless steel 10/22 outfitted with an inexpensive but functional Bushnell scope.
This rig has accounted for quite a few tree rats and water moccasins around my rural homestead already. To complete the package, I needed a folding bipod and proper muzzle snuffer.
The bipod came from Magpul. An M-Lok mount makes it easy to mount and remove. Legs readily adjust for command height. There are 50 degrees of tilt and 40 degrees of pan. The whole shebang is built from rugged reinforced polymer, 6061 T-6 anodized aluminum, and stainless steel.
The can is a SilencerCo Switchback 22. Rated for full-auto fire from .22 Short up to 5.7x28mm centerfire, the Switchback 22 is one of the most versatile small-caliber cans ever contrived.
By mixing and matching end caps and tubes, the operator can configure the Switchback 22 in three different lengths. Flipping the distal bit optimizes the can for either rifles or pistols. Nobody does it better.
Trigger Time On the Luth-AR MCA-22
With the MCA-22 installed and running, the resulting rimfire rifle is the plinker that thinks it’s a sniper rig. Once properly configured, the furniture fits your anatomy like your favorite set of broken-in boxers (you know, the ones that your wife won’t let you wear around the house because of all the sagging elastic and gaping holes).
Stretching out on an old Army sleeping mat behind it is the perfect way to kill a lazy Saturday afternoon.
The gun is obviously only as accurate as the host action, trigger, and cartridge. It still remains a .22 rimfire at heart. However, it still shoots delightfully straight, and it’s just so darn comfortable.
So, what’s it actually good for? Fully accessorized, the Luth-AR MCA-22 Chassis is suitable for Steel Challenge competition, Practical Rimfire matches, casual recreational shooting, and light hunting.
The rifle is light enough to pack yet sufficiently stable to shoot straight. Settling in behind this rascal to ventilate empty Coke cans will remind you of just what attracted you to this quirky little sport in the first place.
The Luth-AR MCA-22 chassis will set you back $190. That’s pretty reasonable for the top-flight design, engineering, and materials science that goes into it. Admittedly, once you spring for the action, drop a c-note on the bipod, fit up some glass, and thread a Switchback 22 on the muzzle, you’ve dumped a not-insubstantial chunk of change on this project.
However, doing so incrementally spreads out the pain, and the end result is just about the coolest homebuilt precision .22 platform money can buy. Pulling this thing tight and sending a few downrange will indeed let your imagination get the best of you.
For more information, please visit Luth-AR.com, Ruger.com, Magpul.com, and SilencerCo.com.
Luth-AR MCA-22 Ruger 10/22 Chassis Specs
Caliber: .22 LR
Barrel: 18.5 inches
Overall Length: 40.25 inches (as tested)
Weight: 7.2 pounds (empty)
Capacity: 10, 15, 25, 30, 50, 70, 110
|Winchester 40 Wildcat||1,202||0.8|
|Winchester 45 M22 Subsonic||1,043||0.4|
|CCI 45 Subsonic||1,027||0.3|
Bullet weight measured in grains, velocity in feet per second (fps) by chronograph and accuracy in inches for best five-shot groups at 25 yards.
This article originally appeared in the September/October 2022 issue of Tactical Life magazine. Get your copy today at OutdoorGroupStore.com.
Didn’t find what you were looking for?
Read the full article here