Innovation! That’s what has driven our country. Unfortunately, as of late, so many things are being outsourced, and many products cloned or copied, with and without a license to do so. Some time ago, I reviewed the Ruger 10/22 take-down rifle. It’s a huge hit for Ruger www.ruger.com, and they keep coming out with different versions of it. Included with the 10/22 take-down rifle is a nice zip-up storage carry case, and it does the job. However, a fellow by the name of Ron Asman, thought he could do it better. I think he has.
Up front I’ll confess that I’ve worked with Ron, helping him refine and improve his design. “No”, I was not paid, and I have no vested interest in his product line. I just saw someone who came up with a “better idea” and threw-in my two-cents worth. As this article is written, at the end of January 2014, Ron still doesn’t have an absolute final product. He’s thinking of making a few more changes that will even make his 10/22 roll-up case design even better. So, what I’m reporting on are some improved cases, over the original prototypes he sent me, but the final cases will more than likely be changed a little bit more when they are finalized.
As I mentioned, the zip-up case that Ruger provides with their 10/22 take-down rifle is pretty nice. If I had one minor complaint, it would be that the case is a little too bulky or thick. Ron Asman came up with a design that allows you to place your 10/22 take-down rifle with it in two pieces, place the gun inside the sewn-in pockets, place a scope in a pocket, and then roll the case up and fasten it with the buckles. Additionally, Asman has added numerous pockets– six of them– for storing more 25-rd magazines for your 10/22 and plenty of ammo, even bricks of ammo.
The material the Asman roll-up 10/22 cases is made out of is Denier Nylon. I’m not sure which thickness, but I’m guessing it is somewhere in the 1,000 Denier thickness range. It’s super, super tough material that can take a beating. The original prototype cases I received were of a light poly material, something akin to the U.S. Army poncho liner. While functional, I didn’t believe it would give your gun much protection. It just seems a little bit too flimsy. Ron Asman, if nothing else, is willing to listen and take criticism, so he set out to improve on his original design and material.
Back when .22 LR ammo was cheap, before the current and still on-going rationing and shortage of .22 LR ammo, I could go to the local big box store and pick-up a brick of 500-rds of ammo for $15.95 and enjoy a day of plinking or small game hunting. Not any longer. When you can find .22 LR ammo, it is usually rationed (maybe one or two 50-rd boxes), and they are ten bucks each or even more. So, needless to say, I haven’t purchased any .22 LR ammo for more than a year. I can sit and wait for supply to meet demand and prices to come down. My family and I haven’t been out shooting our .22 caliber firearms much for the past year or so, since it’s just too expensive. We loved going out on a Saturday afternoon and blasting away for several hours, “killing” all manner of paper targets and other targets of opportunity.
I kept my Ruger 10/22 in the factory case, with the two pieces of the gun in the two pockets designed for it. I would keep two 25-rd magazines in and several boxes of ammo in the case. That was all the case would handle. To be honest, as I said before, it was a bit too bulky for my liking, but the gun was protected, and the spare magazines and ammo was there. Still, there had to be a better way. Ron Asman came up with a better mouse trap, if you ask me.
After you break-down your 10/22 into two pieces, you can place them in the pockets inside the case, and if you have a scope, remove it and place it in one of the three long pockets. I’m not sure how many of the 25-rd magazines the cases will hold, but it will hold more of the banana magazines than I have on hand. Additionally, you can put a couple thousand rounds of .22 LR inside the other larger pockets. It all rolls-up into a tidy package that is easy to carry. The cases come with a carry handle, and the buckle keeps everything inside the cases. You can get an optional shoulder strap too, if you want to sling the case over your shoulder.
The two cases I have are almost identical– one is in OD green, and the other is in the popular ACU digital camo pattern. At present, Ron Asman will sell both versions. He may see which one is more popular and discontinue one of the colors, or maybe he won’t. The OD green case will retail for $45.00. If you want the shoulder strap, it’s another ten bucks. The ACU digital camo case will cost five bucks more, since the material is more expensive. Ron advises that the ACU camo case might go up another ten bucks over the OD case. The camo pattern is popular. Additionally, Ron may offer a woodland camo pattern.
I closely, and I mean, CLOSELY examined both of the 10/22 roll-up carrying cases Ron sent me, and whoever is doing the sewing on these cases (and they ARE made in the USA) knows what they are doing. The seams are prefect, as is all the sewing on the cases. Some of the pockets on the inside are fastened with Velcro, and some just fold-over to keep everything nice and tidy. Without a doubt, a lot of thought, experimentation, and design changes went into the last two samples Ron sent me, compared to the two original prototypes I received.
These 10/22 cases are made one at a time. They are not mass produced. If Ron wanted them mass produced, he could have sent the design off to China. Yeah, the price would have been less, but Ron believes in keeping jobs in America and producing the best product he can manufacture. What’s not to like here?
SurvivalBlog readers are probably wondering about Ron’s web address. Well, that’s another project Asman has that is on-going. I worked with him once again, at no pay, and I have no financial or vested interest in his company on flower pot heaters. I have given him my conclusions. Ron’s own research is on-going on this project. Also, as this article is written, Ron’s website is still being worked on, but it will be up and running by the time this article appears in print. Right now, you won’t be able to order on-line, you’ll have to call Ron, but that could change as things progress.
I like when someone takes it upon themselves to see a need and work on filling that need. Sure, the Ruger 10/22 take-down rifle comes in a nice case from Ruger, but some of us require more, something different, or something that will fill a real need. Ron Asman wasn’t afraid to step forward and work on a design for the 10/22 take-down rifle. He’s had some set-backs, and he surely has taken advice to heart. Now he is producing the best product he knows how to produce, and he is struggling to keep prices down. You’d be surprised to learn how little profit he will make from each roll-up case he sells. Ron and I discussed this, and I don’t think he’s making a large enough profit margin. Still, he insists on keeping prices down as much as he can. Once again, keep in mind that each case is made one at a time, rather than mass produced on a uncaring machine.
So, check out Ron’s website, if you are in the market for something a little different and better than what the factory supplies with their 10/22 cases. I, for one, like to be a little different. I also like the last two samples I received for this article. There is nothing cheap about these cases, NOTHING! You will be the envy of your friends, who have the mere factory case for their Ruger 10/22 take-down rifles. It’s designed and made in the USA by a fellow who came up with a better idea, if you ask me. – SurvivalBlog Field Gear Editor Pat Cascio