M1A tactical mag changes
The method that was suggested to me (and that I use when not
slinged in) is:
1) Retrieve the new magazine with the left hand, base of the
magazine at the base of the fingers, top extending back to the
2) Unlock the old magazine with the thumb on the magazine
release and the fingers wrapped around the front of the magazine. The two magazines should be side by side and
rotatated 90 degrees from each other.
3)Rotate wrist to bring new magazine up to the well and lock
the new magazine into place.
4)If the bolt is locked back, reach under the weapon with the
left hand and release the op rod with the meat of the thumb.
In the past three years, I've fired around 4k of mil-surplus from my
rack grade M1A. All the failures were ammunition related, and
with one exception were cleared by working the action. The one
exception was a strange failure with the bullet seating ahead of
the brass, which caused the brass not to chamber correctly,
which in turn caused a failure to go into battery.