Mini-Projects

Here is a page with links to a couple little projects that you might be interested in. They aren't full blown projects, but they may answer a question about a certain thing you want to know about.

Installing a Heinie Magwell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Heinie Magwell

Ok....maybe you are one of those guys that wants to build a super cool race gun for the upcoming shooting season. Those babies sure do look cool to me. I don't shoot in any of the pistol sports, but I did get the chance to fit a magwell for a friend of mine. It gave me a chance to do some "practicing" and he didn't seem to mind me cutting into his frame.....hahahaha so I went ahead and took some pictures in case anyone else is thinking about doing this sort of thing.

The magwell that my friend decided to use is a Heinie. It requires the frame to be milled down .300 and the rear tangs to be thinned out to .740......sure glad it ain't my gun I'm cutting into hahahaha (Just kidding Eric).

Here is a picture of what I started with. I had originally planned to make a holding jig to keep the bottom of the frame level with the cutter....but I soon found out that it wasn't necessary for what I'm planning. The vise jaws are able to hold it just fine as long as I make shallow cuts. I leveled the bottom of the magwell opening so it would be straight with the cutter. This picture shows the leveling. And here is a picture taken just before I started cutting....one last look at your baby Eric (hahaha).<as an evil grin spreads across PvtRyan's face...>

Ok. I started milling down the "edge" of the magwell along the sides and front (rounded area) by making several cuts. Each cut I only removed about .015 of material. I stopped just before touching the little flat "cross beam" that runs down the inside of the frame.(the part that separates the magwell from the mainspring housing) Here is a picture so you can see what I was doing. I left about .005 room before I would have actually touched the "cross beam". This is important, because as you cut deeper and deeper into the opening.....the cross beam thingee angles in toward the magwell. I didn't want to end up cutting into the cross beam by the time I reached my final depth of .300 so I left a little "fudge factor".....I figured I could always come back later and make a shallow pass to clean it up (or use a file for that matter)....but it would be hard to put metal back on. I used the same logic for the depth of cut. I stopped at .295 instead of going all the way down to .300

The directions that came with the parts said to thin down the ears or tangs or whatever you call them at the rear of the frame. You need to make them exactly .740.....so I started off by measuring them......and then I subtracted .740 from the original reading and then divided that in half. The idea here is to take metal off of BOTH sides equally to get to the desired thickness of .740 (in our case I had to remove .008 from each side). Here is a picture of the tangs being thinned. And this picture shows the way it looked when I stopped cutting up my buddy's gun hahaha.

It's amazing how well things turn out if you just follow the directions.....the new magwell slipped right into place and was tight as a drum. Here are a couple pictures of the fitted piece. Picture1 Picture2 Picture3 Picture4

We noticed right away that the grips will need to be relieved to account for the screw heads that hold the new piece in place. Also.....you will need to cut the grip panels down a little bit so they are flush with the new magwell. Here are a couple pictures so you can see how much they need to be cut (and why they need cut)....admit it you were scratching your head saying..."why do I need to cut my grips".. Picture1 Picture2

That's all that I did to it. My buddy is gonna finish the rest of the work himself. The details I just told you about are the only parts we needed a mill for. He can do the rest with his drill press and files and tap. But here is a rundown of the rest of the steps as I understand them.

Drill and tap the screw holes for attaching the magwell to the frame. Drill a hole in the magwell to allow the mainspring housing retaining pin to go in (we covered it up with new metal). Then just a bunch of blending with file and Dremmel to make it all look nice. It was actually a pretty simple thing to do, but sure makes the pistol look BOSS baby !!