Review of HCMAGS Tactical Pack for the Ruger 10/22, by Francis, the Semi-Prepper

I’m 76 years old and we live in a Home Owners Association communiity near a major southern city in the suburbs. My wife and I will not leave our grandchildren who live in the city but they DO fortunately attend a Christian religious school, not a public school. I have previously posted about our first steps in abandoning our home if we have to. We will not leave them but do have plans which I intended to present here for abandoning our home in case of the WROL or TEOTWAWKI but because of OPSEC will present nothing anymore on that subject. JWR in reviewing my thoughts used the term gedankenexperiment, though I must admit I’m not good with any language, I looked it up and it means planning but not doing…..we did do it and found some very bad surprises in mapping out our escape routes, thus OPSEC.

I have been trying to find a solid alternative for the 25-round Ruger BX-25 magazine. The 10 round magazines we have work perfectly, not a hiccup. The Ruger BX-25 25-round magazines don’t cycle properly every time, despite taking them apart, sanding and cleaning. There has been some progress but I view the two I have as unreliable. In an attempt to get them to work properly, I only load 20 rounds, which sometimes works. Right now, our grandchildren can use the Ruger 10/22.

What drives this? Well, like many of you I have been amazed at how quickly our country has fallen into rot. Children have to be able to defend themselves and the .22 long rifle cartridge has many applications. I have no doubt that we, our children, or our grandchildren will need more than firearms but this is ONE SMALL STEP ALONG THE WAY.

We have some food (about 16 months worth with a separate freezer in our garage that is fully stocked), long term food and rotated canned food (soups, beans, vegetables, etc), I’m a big fan of honey, SPAM and canned corned beef (protein) and vitamins (though I’ve read that vitamins lose 10% efficacy each year). But, we will never become self-sufficient. We give canned food to food banks several months before the expiration date and buy replacements.

We are lacking in medical training and medicines and are working towards that. I’m comfortable with the tangible assets we have (75% of which has been given to the kids) and we have several rural areas (family and friends) we can go to if we decide to abandon our home——a last resort (it will be with our grandchildren or not at all). Thus amongst other things, we come to the firearms our grandchildren will need, they are young. The Ruger 10/22 is a good start, while not a combat rifle but it will hurt someone if they need to be hurt. The small 10 round magazines are too small in capacity. We have added red dots (we have plenty of batteries but that may not be enough so we also practice with iron sights). Thus, the search for a reliable standard capacity magazine.

AN ASIDE: I went to a firearm industry “shoot” in Livonia, GA 6-8 years ago. The “shoot” was organized by (they review and demonstrate all sorts of firearms; they also have podcasts and are on youtube……surprising). At the shoot there was a young man first name Kyle, who owned a small company developing various accessories for firearms. His company has since become bigger with partners. Their website is He had a Ruger 10/22 that had been legally modified to shoot full auto. I fired at least 2 each 10 round magazines at a target either 50 or 75 yards away. I was stunned…no recoil and most of the bullets hit the target. Imagine 400 grains of lead coming your way. My point is that with almost no recoil it was easy to stay on target even at full auto. I recently contacted the company to determine if they were selling the full auto Ruger 10/22 but no one has replied, I’ve attempted this twice. There are ways to own a machinegun but that is possible and though I was an FFL (Federal Firearms License), I no longer am, some states and counties do not allow citizens to own machineguns, it varies.

BACK TO IT: I visit It has a great search capability – you have to logon with your email and provide a password to do searches. There is a large amount of information on the Ruger 10/22 and many other rimfires.

So, research led me to They sell standard 25 round capacity magazines and an innovative system to load them. You can go to their website and see their products and a video. We purchased their HCMAGS Tactical Pack Gen 2 for the Ruger 10/22. Total cost delivered was $129. It arrived within a week.

It did not come with any written instructions; a small card directed us to their website, which pops up an instructional video. The video leaves much to be desired. I fault HCMAGS for not including written instructions, especially when the Internet goes down. I decided to load the magazine while looking at the video. I’m a retired engineer and know how to do anything, don’t ya know! Actually, it was disastrous, with cartridges falling and jamming all over the place. So, back to the video. I’m writing clear understandable instructions (see below) and leaving them in the case for whomever decides to use this. It was not intuitive to me. Our grandchildren will be practicing with these instructions.

It includes (this is HCMAGS description):
Tactical Pack:
Includes Gen II HC3R™ Magazine, 5 Gen II Stripper Clips, Speedloader, 2 take-down tools, and the case!
If you are from a legal area of IL, please call to order. Stores up to 545 rounds with magazine & stripper clips loaded to capacity.
Organized and ready-to-go for ease of use in the field.
Durable thermo-formed zip-up case High density one-piece EVA closed cell foam, precisely cut to fit all of the HC3R accessories Adjustable shoulder carrying-strap.
Additional handle Inside-lid zipper pocket for paper targets (not included).
Six pockets for 50-round ammo-boxes (not included) to store under stripper clips.

Review of each item:
Case: The case is well made. It comes with a handle, a shoulder strap and the inside top of the case has a zippered flap for storage of maps, targets, etc. The zippers work great and the foam is excellent and very hard, it is easy to put items in or out. The case fully loaded weighs just over 6 lbs. Ammunition does not come with the case nor the 10 round Ruger magazine.
Once loaded properly to 20 rounds (I’ll get into that later), the magazine repeatedly performed without any problems.

See photo below: from top left going clockwise: Speedloader, loaded 10 round magazine (not supplied), two tools for magazine disassembly, 50 rounds in box; magazine with 40 rounds (includes 20 in magazine plus 20 in side pocket, 5 each stripper clips loaded (20 rounds) with a 50 round box of 22LR underneath each stripper clip. Total number of rounds is 530, as shown.

Gen II HC3R™ Magazine: Solid, works flawlessly. Note I only load the magazine to 20 rounds as that’s what the stripper clips hold, manually I’ve added 5 rounds to check reliability and it is fine. The magazine is excellent and can hold 25 rounds in it with a “side pocket” that holds 20 more rounds. The cartridges in the “side pocket” of the magazine are loaded onto the stripper clip in the same way the stripper clip is loaded normally from the Speedloader, discussed below The magazine is about 1-1/4 inches longer than the Ruger BX-25. The stripper clip remains on the magazine throughout firing.

If you have some cartridges in the magazine and are finished shooting, DO NOT ATTEMPT TO REMOVE THE STRIPPER CLIP FROM THE MAGAZINE WITH CARTRIDGES IN IT. BUT IF YOU HAVE TO, REMOVE TENSION FROM THE STRIPPER CLIP THAT IS IN THE MAGAZINE FIRST. YOU WILL THEN SPEND UP TO 30 MINUTES REMOVING STUCK CARTRIDGES, HOW DO I KNOW? The first three rounds will fall out in a messy way, HOPEFULLY! Always hold the magazine in an upside down “U” position when doing this or cartridges will fall out of the side pocket. If you hold the magazine with the magwell almost vertically at the top and remove the stripper clip from the magazine and push the small spring lever near the top of the stripper clip, most cartridges might come out properly… to shoot all the rounds in the magazine or leave it for the next time you shoot.

What works for me may not work for you; always hold the magazine almost upright (like an inverted U) when trying to unload it or to remove cartridges.

Speedloader: You’ll have to take your time, with practice its fine and the user can raise all the cartridges in the insert in the clear plastic case for easy loading. In addition, the Speedloader case was not easy to close until I realized I had to push it in the center, not at the bottom where the clip latches closed.

This shows the Speedloader with the spring release being pushed down on the stripper clip, this allows the cartridges to be loaded from the Speedloader.

Stripper clips: HCMAGS says it comes with 5 stripper clips but the magazine also has a stripper clip that is used to load and hold the cartridges. That stripper clip stays on the magazine while in use thus there are 6 total stripper clips in the system. The stripper clips are well made and all 6 worked without a problem. It takes a little practice to load the stripper clip properly from the Speedloader.

Loading a magazine:
Open the Speedloader then push up on the bottom which will raise all the cartridges for easy access. Turn the magazine so that it is an upside down U.
On the magazine, pull the spring loaded follower back and rotate it to lock it in place.
Place 20 rounds in the side pocket. Loading the stripper clip: Push down on the spring loaded button located near the magwell, then align the front of the clip and slide it over the cartridges, (picking them all up on the stripper clip, then release the button and you’re ready for the next step).
Keeping the magazine in an upside down U position, push the stripper clip into the spring loaded catch at the bottom of the magazine. Rotate the stripper clip into the magwell end of the magazine, make sure it is snug. Now, rotate the magazine to having the magwell raised so it is about 2 inches higher than the other end of the magazine, release the stripper clip follower, let it fly and the magazine will be loaded.
Now, the stripper clip holds the “side pocket rounds” onto the magazine. They will not fall out.

This shows the magwell and the spring operated release that is pushed down to allow loading from the Speedloader. The cartridges shown are those in the side pocket.
Look at the magwell to ensure the first cartridge is positioned properly. If not, hold the magazine horizontally, pull back on the follower spring about ¼ in and let it fly, the cartridge should be in the correct position. Check to make sure the cartridge is in the proper position in the magwell.

Two different Allen wrenches are provided to disassemble the magazine. A small Phillips Head screwdriver will be needed for complete disassembly but complete disassembly is not really necessary.

My comments

With practice this system works well and is easy to use ……after practicing.

My failure to unload the magazine properly at first was more me than the system. I did not think it through properly.

I fault HCMAGS for not including written instructions. When the Internet goes down this system may not be of any value other than to the original owner. I’ve added written instructions and placed them in the case.

A word of caution, with the stripper clip on the magazine (it has to be on the magazine when inserting the magazine into the firearm.) when you are finished shooting and there are still cartridges in the stripper clip if you remove the stripper clip, the additional rounds in the “side pocket” of the magazine will fall out unless you are careful, so will a few cartridges near the magwell. You may have to take the magazine slightly apart to remove all stuck cartridges, examine the empty magazine for cartridges.
Actually upon reflection, this system is excellent.

I purchased another Gen II HC3R™ Magazine as two are one and one is none, they are $34.95 plus shipping.

Since we have always budgeted, another complete case and an additional magazine will be purchased
This is a lot for a child (or adult) to learn but once understood it seems easy now.
For those of you who are young read George Orwell’s book, “1984” published in 1949 and “Animal Farm” published in 1945, in England.

I have not received any inducements, gratuities or money for this review. Just prepare for the future, don’t know when but it is coming. God Bless all of you!