The Basepad Extension and Inter-Loc System from MBX Extreme offer speed and stability for all genres of shooting.
What advantages do the MBX Extreme Extension and Inter-Loc System offer?
- The MBX Extreme Inter-Loc System is a clever way of coupling magazines.
- It also increases their capacity.
- The attachment of wings to the Inter-Loc System doubles as a shooting rest.
- This keeps shooters from having to compete in the open class of 3-Gun.
- Best of all, it can be modified without tools, allowing for adjustment on the fly.
Extreme sports tend to lead to unique innovations that might not otherwise occur. Consider drag racing for example. Nearly 100 years ago, drivers raced each other on a straight quarter-mile raceway. The desire to win led to improvements in engines, tires and transmissions — anything that could make a car go faster. Early advances in drag racing even led to better aircraft engines that helped the United States in World War II.
Shooting sports has its share of people who invent things to help with speed and accuracy. Many shooting disciplines, such as 3-gun, employ what’s known as “time-plus” scoring. That is, the winner is the fastest shooter after adding in any penalties for missing targets. A shooter’s need for speed leads tinkerers down the innovation path. Adrian Cobb is one of these firearms innovators.
Cobb’s story begins in California by way of the United Kingdom. Originally from England, he moved to the Golden State at the age of 21 after marrying an American citizen. There he got involved in racing Triumph motorcycles and eventually car racing. A self-taught engineer, he modified engines and cars as he strived to go ever faster.
“I basically learned engineering skills from the ground up,” said Cobb. As time went on, I started to do competitive shooting. The two sports are similar in that there is a timer and you try to go faster and faster.”
Cobb started modifying magazines and guns for people, eventually starting a business called Mag Blueprinting. When he finally got his FFL, Cobb had to come up with a new company name, and he started with “MB” from Mag Blueprinting.
“I noticed every company had a three-letter acronym. I put an X on there and, well, Extreme sounded good, too,” he quipped. MBX Extreme was born.
“Originally, I started with tuning magazines,” Cobb added. “After a while, I couldn’t get magazines because they weren’t available. I could see there were some design issues with what was out there. I sat down and set out to design a magazine that people would want.”
Over a couple of years in his shop, Cobb designed, tested and failed, until one day he made a magazine that worked. His company still makes high-quality pistol magazines for the following styles: STI, Caspian/Tangfolio and Para/Armscor.
Playing The Field
In the same way that drag racing has classes such as top-fuel dragsters, funny cars or pro stock, 3-gun and other timed shooting sports have classes based on gear. Magazine lengths are regulated as a way to level the playing field in a given class. Working within the constraint of length, Cobb designed magazines that would hold more rounds.
“I try to design things that people have overlooked,” said Cobb. “I used to tune magazines to hold 29 rounds or 21 rounds or whatever, and in the competitive shooting world, having an extra round can be a big advantage.”
A few extra rounds might not seem like much of an advantage at first. However, when a match might be decided by tenths of a second, an unnecessary magazine change can prevent a trip to the podium.
The Birth Of The Inter-Loc System
One of Cobb’s latest developments is the Inter-Loc System for magazines. This patent-pending gear is a magazine extension system for black rifles that allows the shooter to couple and decouple two magazines without the use of tools. The base pads are machined from aluminum and come in a variety of colors, and they attach to Magpul Gen 3 magazines. The system also has “wings” that may be attached to the sides of the base plates to provide a stable rest for the shooter, and this too may be done without tools.
In most competitions, shooters who use a bipod on their rifle are pushed into the “open” or unlimited class where there are few, if any, gear restrictions — resting one’s rifle on coupled magazines is usually permitted without having to go to the open class, however. This is one place where the Inter-Loc System shines. The platform the system creates is extremely solid and not much different than shooting from a bipod.
In addition to providing a stable shooting platform, the advantages of the Inter-Loc System include capacity (adding 4-5 rounds on a 40-round magazine), weight (helps with dropping an empty magazine clear of the rifle) and versatility. The latter is due to the ability to change configurations without tools. Magazines may be coupled, decoupled, have wings added or removed with no tools. This is a great advantage for competition shooters who often optimize their gear from stage to stage.
Suppose for example a shooter used coupled mags with wings on a 3-gun stage that required precision prone shooting. The next stage might not have that requirement, so the shooter may quickly decouple the mags, remove the wings, and simply use the higher capacity magazines. These adjustments can be done in seconds. Versatility is also provided in the form of different colors. Colored pads may seem like a fashion statement or novelty at first, but shooters often use different (expensive) ammunition for long-range steel rifle targets as compared to close-range paper targets. Color-coded magazine bases help keep things organized, and they are easy to identify under pressure.
Cobb has been surprised at how people have used the MBX Extreme Inter-Loc System more than anything else.
“It was originally designed to have the wings at the back and to be used as a platform,” said Cobb. “People have used them to stage a gun or use the wing to keep the grip up off the deck so they can grab the gun more easily. Some people have liked putting one wing one way and one wing the other way because they like the support it gives.”
In spite of his success with a variety of MBX Extreme products, Adrian Cobb is probably just getting started. When he first arrived in the United States, he found the opportunities here captivating and unlimited.
“I was like a kid in a candy store,” remarked Cobb. “I think you tend to appreciate the opportunities if you come from a different country where there aren’t as many. Many people I’ve met don’t really recognize how lucky they are with all you can do here and the freedom you have. I think this gives me a certain drive because I didn’t have these opportunities [in England] and, suddenly, I did.”
It was clear from the conversation that Cobb not only saw the opportunities here in the United States, he pursued them aggressively. True to his racing roots, he gave no indication of slowing down anytime soon.
Editor's Note: This “Modern Gunnery” column is an excerpt from the September 2017 issue of Gun Digest the Magazine.