Recently, I underwent a restoration project for an Aardvark Tequila Sunrise. I had to hunt down the original .45 frame and was able to find one luckily. But as anyone that has used an Aardy .45 frame knows -- they are an utter and complete pain in the ***! In order to swap a board, not only does it require you to remove the trigger-frame, but it also requires you to remove the trigger. And sometimes you even have to bend board components, remove chips, etc, in order to be able to fit it in through the top slot. It's kinda crazy. And to remove the .45 DYE Stickies you have to remove the ASA as well. Which is especially a pain in my case since I'm using an old school cage uni-mount. (But this is also true for any frames using 360* wrap-around grips.) Fun fact: it's the only .45 frame made for the Matrix. And the frames are quite nice, has a unique aesthetic and milling, you can use a greater selection of grips, etc. But the design is just not Matrix-board friendly. And this is why the general consensus surrounding the Aardvark .45 frame is that they are not compatible with many Matrix boards.

I had a specific dilemma due to this grand design: I couldn't fit the board simply because I was unwilling to remove the trigger. The trigger pin in this case is completely flush with the frame on both sides, and perfectly fitted. I did give it a few taps, but it didn't budge at all. And I simply didn't feel comfortable continuing to punch it because I knew it was just a matter of time before I licked the frame, (since I couldn't get in it in the groove of the trigger pin hole.) And these frames are just too rare and valuable to risk tool marks.

Solution: I cut the bottom of the board using a Tamiya side cutter. Firstly, I just have to say: God bless the Japanese for such an amazing tool. Cuts plastic like paper with extreme finesse and precision. And the board went it from the side as it's supposed to, no frame and rigger removal needed. I'm posting this because throughout the years I've always heard that certain boards were incompatible with this frame. I hope that this helps dispel that notion. You can fit the board and you don't even have to remove the trigger if you simply cut the bottom: Just make sure you cut just enough to get it in which is 3.5 mm of the PBC and which is also the perfect amount so that the bottom screw can still fasten it down. Just cut right below the top of the screw hole:

Most boards don't run any vitals/lines down to the bottom, so it's 100% safe, in terms of maintaining the board's integrity. Just make sure that the board you're planning to cut doesn't (obviously).

Tamiya Slim-Jaw Side Cutter No. 123:

BTW, I know this is a long shot, but I'm still looking for an Aardvark Snort barrel, any color.

Thanks for reading,