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Question about loadiing magazines

Discussion in 'General Firearms Forum' started by Bernie Link, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. Bernie Link

    Bernie Link

    Aug 3, 2010
    Roswell, NM
    I've heard for a home defense gun (mostly lays by your bed and not shot very often) that you shouldn't load the magazine to it's max. They say it might weaken the spring in the magazine. Does anyone have a thought or experience with this? Thanks, Bernie
  2. Joshhtn

    Joshhtn The eBay Guy Silver Member

    Mar 31, 2009
    Middle Tennessee
    Springs really only weaken when they are being constantly compressed & decompressed (basic use)... Load them up and don't worry about it. :wavey:

  3. collim1

    collim1 Shower Time!

    Mar 14, 2005
    Old wives tale that wont die. Load them to full capacity, chamber a round, and then top the mag off, and leave them loaded. Wont hurt a thing.

    I've had three spare loaded P220 mags in my nightstand for years. They still function 100% every time I go to the range. Same for my P226, my spare mags stay loaded on my duty belt and have since 2004 never had a problem with them functioning.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  4. The Fed

    The Fed

    Dec 23, 2012
    Central Florida
    I called a mag manufacturer about this last year. I was told it was not an issue and if I ever had a problem they would send a new spring for free.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  5. Bernie Link

    Bernie Link

    Aug 3, 2010
    Roswell, NM
    Thanks Guys, for putting my concerns to rest. I really appreciate it. Bernie
  6. FireForged

    FireForged Millenium #3936 Millennium Member

    Dec 25, 1999
    Rebel South
    My only concerns are as follows:

    Spring being compressed beyond its design limits
    Spring being stretched beyond its design limits
    Spring being in constant motion (heat)

    None of those condition exist in my planned use of a magazine so I simply do as I please with them and dont worry. I will tell you that I have shot 20 round USGI magazines that were fully loaded since the 1970's and never experienced a problem.

    Can a magazine spring wear out? Sure
    Do magazine springs wear out? Sure
    Have I ever experienced this? Nope
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  7. sourdough44


    Jul 23, 2007
    '6 of one half dozen of another', or however you want to do it. I don't have a problem with a full mag, but I often chamber one & don't top off that extra in the mag, leaving one short. With some gun & mag combos, that last round really needs to be 'jammed in'.
  8. 4Rules


    Mar 11, 2012
  9. Arc Angel

    Arc Angel Deus Vult!

    Sep 20, 2003
    Penn's Woods
    :shocked: Are you an alien? (Couldn't resist!) :supergrin:

    This is one of those perpetually divisive firearm topics. First I, pretty much, agree with Larry Vickers. Why? I've been handling firearms for more than 50 years; and, I'm able to remember, just about, every magazine jam I've ever had.

    Do magazine springs take a, 'set'? OF COURSE THEY DO! A great many of us have used this phenomenon in order to break-in new, 'stiff' magazines. Will fully compressing a magazine spring and leaving it that way for an extended period-of-time wear it out? NO!

    Weakening the spring is, actually, a moot consideration. That's not, usually, what a gun owner has to worry about. What you don't want that fully loaded semi-auto to do is fail to either feed, or extract. I've got 50 + years of frequent and extensive experience with firearms that have taught me: A tightly loaded magazine is more likely to cause a critical failure to feed or eject than another magazine that is downloaded by, at least, one round.

    All of my semiautomatic EDC/self-defense pistols are downloaded by, at least, one round. My AR's and AK's are constantly loaded and downloaded by, at least, two rounds. Does this practice do me any good? I don't know; but, I haven't had a feeding or extraction jam in a good 9 years! (The last two FTF's I had were in a pair of Glock Model 21's that I had loaded to full magazine capacity + one.)

    The other risk you're taking is that: Should you ever need to quickly rack the slide, it's going to be a lot easier to do if you don't try this over the top of a fully charged magazine; AND, particularly with a Glock, if you store it with the trigger back and tension off the striker spring, then you better make sure to lock the slide back BEFORE you insert a fully loaded magazine.

    'Why'? Because slapping a fully loaded magazine into many Glock pistols that: (1) have the trigger back AND the striker spring relaxed, along with (2) the slide closed can cause the slide's pickup rail and the rim of a TIGHTLY PACKED top round to LOCK UP so that the slide cannot be either quickly or easily withdrawn. THAT is, 'Why'. ;)
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  10. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

    Oct 23, 2000
    California & New Mexico, US
    The only mags that I don't load to maximum capacity are the old GI M16 mags I had. When loaded to 30-rounds, they won't allow the rifle to reliably chamber the first round. I experimented with them and see how many rounds I had to download before the first round would reliably chamber. Some of them I had to go down to 25-rds. So I made it a point to only load these GI mags to 25-rds across the board.

    Thank goodness for MagPul mags.
  11. It's an old wives tale from when double stack mags were in their infancy, it hasnt been an issue for over 60 years.
  12. Glockdude1

    Glockdude1 Federal Member CLM

    May 24, 2000