THE KID SUPERMATCH TRIGGER UNIT
Target Sport March 2003:
by Gwyn Roberts
10/22® Performance Parts
"The STANDARD trigger pull for an out of the box Ruger® 10/22® is around 6-7lbs. A 'trigger job' with replacement parts can bring this down to around 2 1/2 - 3 lbs with a reasonable 'let off'. Most of those I have tried though have still felt vague and slightly rough just before the sear disengages to release the shot. Considering the size of some of the targets that we are now shooting a good scope and trigger unit combination are essential for you to achieve your maximum potential. The KID trigger could well be what you need to move up to the next class. Product Test by Gwyn Roberts.
Tony Kidd (Kidd Innovative Design) is one of the top gunsmiths in the USA and is the man responsible for the design and manufacture of this exceptional trigger assembly. Tony used his "SuperMatch" trigger in Troy Lawton's National Smallbore Silhouette Championship winning rifle. Troy was the first shooter to win the US National Silhouette Championships with an Auto-loading rifle based around a Ruger® 10/22® action. Anschutz bolt action type rifles had previously dominated all of the Smallbore Silhouette type matches, until Troy came along that is. There are three KID trigger units to choose from, these being the SuperMatch, Match and Sportsman models. (This is no longer true, now there is only one model fully adjustable from 6oz-3lbs) Each one being a 'drop in' replacement, needing no fitting by a gunsmith.
All of the trigger housings are machined from 6061-T6 Billet. Using the latest CNC and EDM technology, each trigger unit features a two-stage trigger design and has a 50% lighter hammer for a significantly faster lock time. The Supermatch let off pressure can be adjusted anywhere between 6oz and 14oz (14oz-28oz on the Match model and 1/4-2 1/2lbs on the Sportsman unit). All of the units can be adjusted for 1st stage pull weight, over-travel and cant. The reach to the trigger blade, take-up (or slack) and sear engagement can also be adjusted, and an automatic bolt release and extended magazine release are fitted as standard. Basically whatever is in it, on it or needed, can be adjusted somehow.
Down at the range I decided to try the new trigger until as it arrived straight out of the box with the factory settings, before going on to make any adjustments. The let off was set at 14oz and each shot was released cleanly and smoothly with a very positive 'feel' to it. This was also helped by the lighter and better shaped trigger blade. As the trigger units are a two-stage design, there was quite a bit of first stage 'slack' to take up before you could feel the trigger engaging. This took a bit of getting used to at first, as m old Jewell trigger unit was set up with no slack at all for an instant release.
I fired a few hundred rounds through the rifle just to see how it performed, and had no light strike or jamming problems with it. Then, following the comprehensive instructions and allen keys supplied with the unit, I started to adjust the unit to how I wanted it to work. It did take some time to adjust the trigger 'reach,' 'let off' and 'take up' to how I wanted it set up (no, I'm not easily pleased) but the end result was well worth the effort. The 'let off' is now set at 7oz with negligible 'slack' and with the trigger blade set quite far back in the housing. Every shot was released easily and precisely from a variety of shooting positions and the group size definitely seemed to be smaller and more consistent.
Pleased with the results that I was getting, I decided to get Nick and Sarah, two of our junior shooters to have a try with it. I kept all of their targets shot from each distance during an earlier 1500 practice session that day as a comparison. Both had been shooting the club's custom rifles, which have had their trigger units 'tuned'.
Both had a quick practice to get used to the new trigger 'release' and then went on to shoot a couple of match 1 and 3 practices. Although it was only shot up to 25m (due to our indoor range restrictions) both shooters instantly scored high and grouped consistently better with the KID Supermatch trigger fitted as opposed to the 'heavier' trigger. A brief chat and analysis concluded that the improved performance was due to the fact that it was much easier to release each shot when the scope was lined up on the center of the target. As it is impossible to hole the crosshairs still in the X ring, people tend to snatch at the trigger when it passes anywhere near the middle of the target. If the trigger has a much heavier 'let off' the shooter will tend to pull the rifle slightly off target whilst releasing each shot. This will obviously greatly affect the placing of each shot as well as the overall group size. With the KID trigger fitted, the juniors merely applied a slight pressure on the trigger blade each time the crosshairs passed over the X ring, instantly producing better shots on the target.
The improved performance with the KID trigger unit installed could easily be seen on one of the quicker 1500 matches. On Match 1 (10 & 15 yds--12 shots in 20 seconds) Nick managed to keep all of his shots within the X ring, with the exception of a couple of 10's. While Sarah who has not been shooting anywhere near as long as Nick has, still managed to keep most of her shots consistently inside the X and 10 ring. 'Pulled shots' were virtually eliminated. In the match 3 practices, the Weak hand and Kneeling position scores were also much improved as the juniors were able to concentrate more on their sight picture and hold instead of the trigger pull. Overall, both shooters commented that the KID trigger was much easier to shoot with, and all of their 'Supermatch' targets certainly scored higher than those targets which were shot earlier. If it works with our juniors, I'm sure that nearly everyone else's scores would benefit from a trigger unit like this.
I prefer to shoot with a light trigger when I'm shooting the Police/Service, 1500 and Bianchi types matches, for safety reasons I personally increase the 'let off' weight of the trigger for any Steel or Man v Man type events. Because these matches are usually shot much faster and at multiple targets across the range, the trigger pull doesn't need to be quite as light as in he precision matches. Changing the 'let off' weight of the trigger for these types of matches, hunting or even for 'novice' shooters who might not start off with a trigger as light as this during their training period, is simply accomplished in a few minutes.
The KID Supermatch is a very impressive trigger unit and far exceeds anything this can be done with 'tuned' Ruger® versions. Priced at $279.95 it isn't a cheap replacement part, but it is well worth it for the shooter who needs this final piece of the jigsaw to put everything together. My Supermatch trigger can be tested out on the range at most of the matches around the country during the season. Don't ask me half-way through a match though, as a bit of notice would be appreciated!"