Keep magazines loaded?
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Thread: Keep magazines loaded?

  1. #1

    Keep magazines loaded?

    I'm sure this has been asked before, but thanks to the idiot politicians and their dread of high-capacity magazines, I can't find it. I've heard it's bad to keep magazines loaded for an extended period of time, that it will weaken the springs. Is that true? The person I heard it from hasn't owned anything other than a rifle or shotgun in a while... and he still has the same ones he had as a kid! So, while knowledgeable he's a little out of date. I'm just wanting to keep a loaded gun both upstairs and downstairs in quick access safes, and I only have one revolver. And clearly there's no way to get an intruder to wait while I load up a magazine!
    Modern Whig
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  3. #2
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    Today's modern mag springs are designed to be stored under pressure. Emptying & recharging a magazine will do more to weaken the spring than keeping the mag charged all the time.
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  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by tcox4freedom View Post
    Today's modern mag springs are designed to be stored under pressure. Emptying & recharging a magazine will do more to weaken the spring than keeping the mag charged all the time.
    Had a feeling that would be the case... lot of cool new stuff in the last 15-20 years. Thanks!
    Modern Whig
    "Government is not meant to burden Liberty but rather to secure it." -T.J. O'Hara

  5. #4
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    Keeping them loaded will not harm them... repeated use will eventually weaken them, though. I store about 95% of all my various mags loaded, have for years... they all still work fine.
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  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by gunnerbob View Post
    Keeping them loaded will not harm them... repeated use will eventually weaken them, though. I store about 95% of all my various mags loaded, have for years... they all still work fine.
    Yep, all true. It's the loading/unloading that eventually weakens them. This question has been asked on many firearms forums.
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  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_M View Post
    Yep, all true. It's the loading/unloading that eventually weakens them. This question has been asked on many firearms forums.
    I knew it had to have been asked before, but all I came up with was "magazine ban!" or "magpul's leaving colorado!" or even "where to buy!" lol

    Thanks everyone
    Modern Whig
    "Government is not meant to burden Liberty but rather to secure it." -T.J. O'Hara

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tcox4freedom View Post
    Today's modern mag springs are designed to be stored under pressure. Emptying & recharging a magazine will do more to weaken the spring than keeping the mag charged all the time.
    I hate to disagree, but I must add my own .02 cents on this topic...
    My own personal experience is the opposite of what you (and others) have stated on this particular subject.

    Case in point;

    I have carried Glock's (almost exclusively) for many years now.
    I moved from California to Texas about 7 years ago and during that move I boxed up some of my fully loaded Glock 19 magazines during the big move and kind of forgot about them as they sat stored inside the taped up box for over 6 years straight.
    When I finally re-opened up the box and saw the two Glock 19 magazines (still fully loaded) I decided to unload them both and check them for any malfunctions. Both magazines ended up being non-reliable imvho. The spring's in both magazine's had clearly weakened over those 6 years of being left fully loaded.
    I have since replaced both spring's and they are now as good as new.
    I always rotate my magazine's every 6 months or so nowaday's and have not had anymore problems since.
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  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by The_Outlaw View Post
    I always rotate my magazine's every 6 months or so nowaday's and have not had anymore problems since.
    I only have two right now (new gun, only came with two), but obviously I plan on getting more. Maybe I'll keep a couple loaded with self-defense ammo, then every so often "unload" them at the range and switch out. It's a M&P Shield, if anyone knows anything about the reliability of their magazines.
    Modern Whig
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  10. #9
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    Heard this from an instructor from Sig. He asked the Sig metallurgists this question. They told him the constant use wears the spring not being stored compressed. In your case maybe they can be stored for 5 yrs 10mos. not 6 yrs before they get like well used magazines. There was no mention of how long they are stored before they degrade.
    Six yrs, wonder if the ammo was also good.
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  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Outlaw View Post
    I hate to disagree, but I must add my own .02 cents on this topic...
    My own personal experience is the opposite of what you (and others) have stated on this particular subject.

    Case in point;

    I have carried Glock's (almost exclusively) for many years now.
    I moved from California to Texas about 7 years ago and during that move I boxed up some of my fully loaded Glock 19 magazines during the big move and kind of forgot about them as they sat stored inside the taped up box for over 6 years straight.
    When I finally re-opened up the box and saw the two Glock 19 magazines (still fully loaded) I decided to unload them both and check them for any malfunctions. Both magazines ended up being non-reliable imvho. The spring's in both magazine's had clearly weakened over those 6 years of being left fully loaded.
    I have since replaced both spring's and they are now as good as new.
    I always rotate my magazine's every 6 months or so nowaday's and have not had anymore problems since.
    Hey Outlaw, not challenging your personal experience, just trying to understand and square it with my own experiences.

    How was the box that the mags were in stored, in a climate-controlled environment (like inside the house) or not (like the garage or a storage unit)? Reason I ask is that if it was a place that it was exposed to that stifling Texas heat for six long years, there's a good chance that it wasn't the pressure from being loaded that made the spring(s) weak, but the springs' heat-treating being (even slightly) annealed over that long a time of extended periods of exposure to heat.

    If it was a leaf-spring or some other kind of heavier base metal with a spring temper, certainly ambient heat wouldn't be adequate to anneal it. But magazine springs being as thin as they are could conceivably be made softer (annealed) by ambient temperatures, especially in hot climes like Texas (or Alabama too!).

    If they were inside the house or otherwise kept relatively cool, then nevermind. In that case, I guess we'll just have to chalk it up to an anomaly, because in good quality firearms (which Glocks certainly qualify), that maintains good quality control in their manufacturing processes, heat treating technologies are so close in tolerances to specs that manufacturers have next to no liabilities in recommending storing springs under pressure if that's how they designed them to function, and with mags, that is how they are designed. The only caveat that I would offer is if the weapon(s)/mags being discussed are of the "disposable" variety. In other words, cheaply-made, low tolerances (if any) adhered to in the manufacturing processes.

    To telpinaro, in almost every case, you can leave your mags loaded almost indefinitely, assuming that you would at least take them shooting every now and again.

    Blues
    No one has ever heard me say that I "hate" cops, because I don't. This is why I will never trust one again though: You just never know...

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