ASA 37MM Adapter Test and Review
Copyright 2011 3LC Productions
ASA Adapters for 37mm launchers and weapons
This review will be on American Specialties Ammunition 37mm adapter series. Chris Reed was nice enough to drop me a couple of these to test out, and they are fun! Some of these adapters are made for use in only 37mm anti-personnel weapons. These include (in the US) registered DD launchers only. Know your Federal laws before ordering your adapter! To possess one of these adapters, together with an unregistered 37mm launcher would be a Federal Felony, punishable with a $10,000.00 fine and 10 years in a Federal Prison.
The first adapter I will review is the steel 12ga to .410ga/45 Long Colt adapter. The adapter is made of steel, and is parkerized dark black. It is lathed to hold a .410 shotshell. The .410 is becoming a much more popular load for launcher shooters due to its lower power and kick. This makes it much easier on aluminum M203 receivers. I actually purchased a .410 shotshell reloader specifically for reloading the .410 empties I get from testing. I love the caliber, and with the adapter, I can use my M79 for rat hunting in the barn. The adapter fits perfectly into the 37mm to 12ga adapter ASA also sells marked “DESTRUCTIVE DEVICE USE ONLY”. The .410 adapter is not marked. In testing, the .410 adapter functioned very well. The adapter fits into the 37mm to 12ga adapter well also. The adapter is 2.540” tall and when placed in the 37mm adapter, the top rests .590” below the top of the 37mm adapter.
The .410 to 12ga inside the 37mm to 12ga adapter
The next adapter I will review is the 37mm to 12ga adapter for registered destructive devices only. This adapter is aluminum and is 3.140” tall. The base rim OD is 1.705”. The machine work on the adapter is exceptional. Also, the hard coat anodizing is very well done. The base of the case is laser etched, as shown in the above photo. The .410 steel adapter only fits into this adapter. The “DD use only” applies to DOC and LEO use also, for the information of those LEOs out there that might be interested in adding this to their Department’s arsenal. Make sure your department’s launchers are registered properly before adding this to your “go” bag.
The adapter was tested using my Springfield Armory M79 GL, mounted with a Shivak 37mm M79 barrel. The adapter functioned very well using all types of 12ga and .410 ammo. I do not recommend using this adapter with flechette 12ga rounds due to the short adapter length, and the possibility of the darts turning and scratching your barrel before exiting. This might be the case with longer Fed Labs or other longer barrel 37mm launchers.
Another adapter, similar to the 37mm to 12ga adapter is the 37mm to 12ga flare adapter. It is made exactly like the 12ga adapter except it has a shorter chamber design made to only chamber 12ga flares commonly manufactured by companies like Orion® distress signals. The .410 adapter will not fit into this adapter. The base of the adapter is marked “37mm To 12ga. FLARE”. The adapter is made of the same materials as it’s brother, the DD launcher version, and anodized in the same manner. The inside is reduced in ID to .725” so that normal 12ga shot shells or slugs cannot be chambered or fired.
The next adapter I will review is the 37mm to 26.5mm adapter. This adapter is 5.25” tall. It is anodized a nice dark powder blue, and engraved with designs on the sides. The adapters are made to use any of the commercially available 26.5mm ammunition available, or the reloading components made by Scot Pace at reloadable shells.com and ASA 26.5mm cups and caps. These can be used in registered 37mm launchers with AP (anti-personnel) ammunition or in unregistered launchers with pyrotechnic ammunition.
These adapters were tested using Scot Pace’s 26.5mm reloadable casings, and the 26.5mm cups and caps available from ASA. I loaded them with buckshot, and they worked well. You can also use them for launching pyrotechnic payloads such as stars or smokes commercially available from sources like Dan’s ammo, or Ammo to go.
I recommend these adapters for use in any standard 37mm launcher on the market today. They are designed well, and made to last. The anodizing work is top notch, and all the rounds I fired worked. No misfires at all. They are easy to clean, which is especially important when you are firing that corrosive Czech 26.5mm black powder stuff.