If you’ve got the itch to build a custom .22 based on America’s favorite rimfire platform, check out Tactical Innovations (and Pike Arms, which shares the same location). They offer many different innovative 10/22® compatible styles. And within those styles, they have up to seven different color options. You can get billet, billet stainless, left-side charging, rear-charging, takedowns, detachable top rails, and even 80% receivers. There are plenty of color options, and accessories to match. Ordering a bolt or other hardware with your receiver can save you some money too. Here’s a quick rundown.
Many of the features found on this 8.3 ounce receiver are on the other models, so I’ll spend some extra time covering details. Like all their receivers, it’s precision CNC machined, not cast. This one is from a block of 6061 T6 aluminum. When you machine a receiver, rather than casting one, you can get smoother surfaces and tighter tolerances. This can contribute to consistency when shooting. A cleaning hole in the back allows you to clean back to front, avoiding crown damage. There’s a plug included to cover the cleaning hole, and it’s covered by most stocks when installed. Hard anodizing and laser engraving offer durability and good looks.
Like the rest of their receivers, the Elite22D™ is a great base for your next build. Whether for plinking, hunting, or competition, it’s a huge upgrade over a Ruger® factory receiver. And Tactical Innovations offers this model in matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), blue, gold, green, purple, or red. You can mix or match any color with the included removable top rail when ordering. Naturally, they also have plenty of matching accessories.
Similar in pretty much every way to the Elite22D™, the Elite22™ includes an integrated extended Picatinny rail for your scope, red dot, or sight. That’s stronger than a bolt-on, and eliminates alignment issues. Tactical Innovations offers this model in matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), blue, gold, green, purple, or red.
Available with or without matching colored rails, the Elite22TD™ is the takedown version of the Elite22™. The most notable difference is the extra hardware for the takedown mechanism. It too is CNC precision-machined billet, but heat-treated steel, rather than aluminum. Color options are slightly different though. They include matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), blue, olive drab, purple, or red. Note that the takedown hardware for the receiver is also available separately, as is the takedown latch mechanism for the barrel. One aspect of the takedown is the ease of barrel swaps. Making that hardware available and affordable adds to the overall value of this receiver.
While this one is also fine for plinking and hunting, it should really appeal to competition shooters. Again, it has the same features as the Elite22™ receivers. What makes it different is the unique left-side charging handle. Working the bolt with a standard receiver requires you to break your grip and cheek weld. Not an issue here. Whether charging it or clearing a jam, this receiver is built for speed and convenience.
The Elite22™ retains the right side ejection port, and uses a standard bolt. It does not use a standard charging handle though. So a color-matched, spiral fluted charging handle is included with each one. Color options are matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), blue, gold, green, purple, or red as well.
Many companies are making stocks that allow you to build a 10/22™ with some of the look and feel of an AR15. Here’s your chance to get a receiver that charges like one too. The CH22™ is machined in the same manner as the rest of the Tactical Innovations receivers. Where it takes a different path is the stainless steel charging handle at the rear, like an AR15. So the receiver is smooth-sided, and snag-free. That smooth look is enhanced by the smaller ejection port. It’s only available with the integrated rail, as that helps house the charging handle. Available colors are matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), gold, green, purple, or red.
This non-reciprocating charging handle can be used with either the left or right hand. So you don’t need to break your grip, although you may not be able to maintain a cheek weld. And you can use a standard bolt. While I really like this idea, I’ve noticed a muscle memory issue when switching from the 10/22™ to the AR15. The motion of moving the safety selector from safe to fire on the 10/22™ is what drops the magazine on an AR15. Maybe I just need to shoot my AR15s more, but they’re not as inexpensive to feed as my rimfires.
Want steel? They’ve got it. Same features and tolerances as the aluminum receivers, but CNC machined from ordnance grade 416R stainless steel. Weight goes up to 20.2 ounces, making this an ideal base for a bench rest rifle. That you can hand down for generations. Available in polished stainless, matte stainless, and black nitride matte black stainless.
Pike Arms 80% receivers
For the ultimate DIY build, you can get a Pike Arms 80% receiver in railed, takedown, and stainless steel versions. These are basically the Elite22™ receivers, minus some finish work. If you have a drill press, mill, or lathe, you should be able to finish one at home. The following holes are unfinished: barrel hole, v-block cap screw holes (2), receiver cross pin holes (2), recoil buffer hole, recoil spring rod detent, and stock attaching screw.
If you’ve got mad skills, you can probably get away with just the available machinist drawing. There are fixtures and tool sets available as well. And you can choose between the “single use” or more expensive multi-use fixture, depending on how many you plan to build. Color options are matte black, “stainless” anodized clear (silver), blue, olive drab, purple, or red, or raw (great for Cerakote). These are ATF-approved, so no FFL is required. Have them shipped right to your door (where legal).
Legal stuff you should know*
There’s an important legal consideration when building from a bare receiver. The ATF considers these bare, or “virgin” receivers to be neither a rifle nor pistol, until it’s first assembled. If you build it as a rifle first, it will always legally be considered a rifle. Want a barrel under 16″? You’ll have to take the SBR route. But, if you build it as a pistol first, then you can make it a rifle later. Or avoid that tax stamp, and build it as a braced pistol. With the price of many of these receivers being under or close to $200, I’d always take another receiver before paying the government $200. It makes financial sense, and you have a better quality firearm.
Building a firearm from an 80% receiver may not be legal in certain jurisdictions. So check local laws before you start planning your build. Tactical Innovations does have a handy dropdown where you select your state, and they will let you know if they can ship to you. I’d still double-check. There are also very specific requirements, should you decide to sell your “homemade” firearm. You’ll want to follow them too.
All fully finished (not 80%) receivers are serialized, and considered firearms by the ATF. So they do need to be shipped to your FFL.
*I’m not an attorney, and nothing on this page should be taken as legal advice. The above information was provided as a courtesy only. Note also that this information is subject to change at any time. It is up to the individual to be familiar with local, state, and federal firearms laws. What is legal in one locale may not be the next state over. So do your research before you start your build.