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If you do any sort of hunting, recreational shooting, or prepping, you know the cost of ammunition has gone through the roof....exponentially. It was just a few years ago that I was cursing how .45 ACP was $13 for 50 rounds. Now, the same box costs over $26....if you can even find it.
It's awfully hard to practice your shooting if it is too costly. Even .223/5.56mm has gone through the roof. In many places, you can't even find ammo. I suspect that prices will never come down, even if the availability comes back.
Luckily, about a year ago, I was introduced to a viable option. CMMG makes this drop in conversion for your AR-15 to shoot 22LR. Now, in case you have lived under a rock, a 500 round brick of .22 is about $18...as opposed to a box of 20 .223 rounds for the same price. It's also easier and safer to shoot the .22LR.
So, when I bought my AR, one of the first things I wanted to get was this conversion. It takes literally 15 seconds to drop in. You can find the CMMG kit, which my dad bought me for Christmas, here. It costs around $220.
It is very user friendly, taking about 15 seconds to pop your bolt and carrier out and replace it with this one.
The downsides are, the magazine is very loose.
I have had a lot of misfires with the current box of ammo. I believe this is because the rounds aren't very tight in the chamber. When I really squeeze the trigger, it sometimes misfires. When I jerk the trigger, it fires.
But, again, it doesn't happen very often.
It is now affordable and fun to go out shooting again!