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Old January 30, 2006, 09:54 PM   #1
sdj
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Releasing the magazine...

The situation: You've just fired your last round. The slide has come back and locked into position. It's time to get the empty magazine out and the full magazine in. Your new magazine is in the holder, fastened to your belt, at your waist on your support side. Your firearm's release button is located at the top of the handle, beneath the trigger area, on the support side of the frame.

The question: What technique do you use to release the old magazine and insert the new magazine in the smoothest manner and in the least amount of time?

Thanks in advance.

PS: Your support hand is empty, and still on the pistol, as you were shooting two handed.
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:11 PM   #2
Dwight55
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Practice will make this an easy trasition, . . . support hand reaches for a full magazine, . . . shooting thumb releases MT mag, . . . support hand inserts mag and thumbs down the release button/lever. Back to shooting as needed.

You can also practice looking for any lull in the action, . . . make it a natural time for the off hand to reach for a magazine, . . . and yes, . . . you can support the shooting hand with a magazine in the support hand.

Again, . . . the word is practice. Load up several magazines with 1, 2, or 3 rounds in them, . . . get up close to the target area, . . . put the magazines in a bag on the table in front of you, . . . practice shooting and loading.

A couple of times through this with 7 or 8 magazines, . . . you will get the hang of it. Also don't try to do it blind, . . . take that half second to actually look down and see if you are putting the mag in correctly, . . . bullets forward, . . . can make one heck of a difference.

May God bless,
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:12 PM   #3
1inthechamber
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Press the release button with your left thumb and let the empty magazine fall to the ground at the same time you reach for a fresh magazine.
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:25 PM   #4
tiburondriver47
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This may be a stupid question, but would a magazine get damaged by being released from 5+ ft onto a hard surface(i.e. concrete)?
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:30 PM   #5
OBIWAN
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Lots of detail missing...but in general

Speed reload...

Use the index finger on your weak hand to insure the bullets are pinted the right way and help guide the mag in.

Yeah...you may damage a mag...but it beats being dead
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:46 PM   #6
tiburondriver47
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Obiwan:
lol I understand that, I wouldnt be worried about it in a real life senario, but would be more so during pratice drills.

Thanks
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Old January 30, 2006, 10:59 PM   #7
Capt Charlie
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lol I understand that, I wouldnt be worried about it in a real life senario, but would be more so during pratice drills.
The trouble with that is that, under stress, you'll revert to whatever you trained to do. During the infamous Newhall Incident, one CHP officer was killed because he took the time to put his empty brass in his pocket. That was how he was trained to do it at the CHP academy. Put a jacket or something on the ground to catch the mag if you have to, but drop the mag and forget it!

If you really want to increase your speed during reloads, learn to count off your shots. When the last round chambers, don't fire it. Drop the mag & insert a fresh one. You won't have to hit the slide release and that will shave off as much as a full second from your reload time.

I know several IPSC shooters that keep their weapons on target while doing a magazine swap. They can literally have a new mag in and be shooting again before the empty mag hits the ground. Of course, a well beveled magazine well helps there, too.
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:04 PM   #8
tiburondriver47
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CaptCharlie: I didnt look at it that way. It is truely unfortunate that something as minute as it may seem could possibly cost a life.
Thanks
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:20 PM   #9
AAshooter
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I think the technique when properly done releases the old mag only after you have indexed a fresh one. It would not be good to dump your empty mag on the ground only to discover you don't have a magazine in your mag pouch.

It that case you want to retain the empty magazine in case you can round up some ammo.
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:31 PM   #10
#18indycolts
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if we're talking about a "real life situation", then I'd be screwed since I don't carry an xtra mag. I'm a good shot so I hope I'd hit at least once with a 12 rd. mag!
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Old January 31, 2006, 01:02 AM   #11
shield20
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You may also be screwed if you get a jam. Many types require stripping out the old mag and replacing it. I try to always carry a spare or two, even if just in a pocket. One on the support side, another on the gun side in the pocket of my cover vest or jacket - the weight helps swing the flap out of the way during draw.
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Old January 31, 2006, 07:25 AM   #12
BigV
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Keep in mind that some autos will not fire the round in the chamber if the mag is removed...
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Old January 31, 2006, 07:35 AM   #13
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Dropping mags on the ground may damage them but that's the reason I kept my old Klinton ban 10 round mags and keep my standard capacity mags for carry and slow-fire drills on the range where they don't get the same rough treatment.
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Old January 31, 2006, 08:10 AM   #14
American4guns
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The method Capt Charlie described is called a combat reload.If you dont know how many rounds you shot and in a gunfight you probably wont,but you know you only have a couple,thats when you do a combat reload.I have dropped my glock mags over and over into gravel /dirt mix while training at an outdoor range.They got a little dirty,but no real damage.As someone stated,better to have a damaged mag then a hole in your head.Practice practice practice.Most importantly practice drawing,so your not swing your firearm.You want to come up along your body to about chest high bring gun to center ,bring your support hand to your gun covering your gun hand,always keeping muzzle pointed down range,now you punch your weapon straight out from your chest.No matter what,if you use this technique you have your weapon pointed towards the threat in the least amount of time.Now you can point shoot or sight aim ,depening on distance of threat and your ability.Once again practice practice practice.Take a defensive gun course! One other thing,i generally use my thumb to release the mag,this way i can already be going for another mag while the spent mag is releasing.Less fine motor skills invloved that way and generally faster reloads
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Old January 31, 2006, 08:14 AM   #15
OBIWAN
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TD47

Understand completely....

When I belonged to an indoor range (concrete floors) I put a rubber mat down for that very purpose
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Old February 8, 2006, 09:53 PM   #16
sdj
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The folks on TFL are like a living library; now if I can just find the librarian…

“Dwight55” notes “shooting thumb releases MT mag,”. I cannot get my shooting thumb over to the magazine release with fewer than two movements: my support hand shifts to the frame and my primary hand shifts quite a bit in order for me to get my thumb on the release. In fact, it was all this motion that occasioned my questioning my magazine release method and what lead me to post my question. It seemed like too much motion to use my primary-hand thumb. It seemed more natural to me to do what “1inthechamber” recommends:

“Press the release button with your left thumb and let the empty magazine fall to the ground…”

“American4guns” seems to be in agreement: “One other thing,i generally use my thumb to release the mag,this way i can already be going for another mag while the spent mag is releasing.”

A very small and light motion from the support and the empty magazine drops off like stage-one of a Saturn V launch.

At this point, the primary hand has not budged; firearm is still on target, if needed. Support hand grabs a fresh magazine, and as “OBIWAN” recommends, I am to “use the index finger on [my] weak hand to insure the bullets are pointed the right way…” ( What about the blast shield? Do I keep that up or down? )

The combat re-load described by “Capitain-Charlie” strikes me as pinnacle of smart, fast shooting. Yet, I know that I’ll never be able to keep an accurate count of my rounds. I have magazines of various capacities, for one. Moreover, I have taken an interest in IDPA. I understand that at most stages of IDPA, the shooter is required to fire until the slide locks back before reloading. So, no combat reload, there.

I’ll be working on these techniques as often as possible.

Thanks, all.

-sdj
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Old February 9, 2006, 09:20 AM   #17
mete
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In actual combat it has been shown that after 2 or 3 rounds you lose count of how many you've fired ! The actual methods depend on the gun and shooter . Many have to move the hand to release the mag with a 1911 ! With a gun like some of the HKs you have a choice of thumb or trigger finger to release .Some guns will drop the mag some will have to be pulled .Work it out for you and your gun. In combat you will do exactly as you practice !!!! It was always a shock to people in the IPSC matches when they saw me reload my HK P7 PSP [butt mounted mag release] as fast as anyone with a 1911 !!Practice ,practice.
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Old February 9, 2006, 02:03 PM   #18
Capt Charlie
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Quote:
In actual combat it has been shown that after 2 or 3 rounds you lose count of how many you've fired !
Admittedly, it is difficult, but you can train to do this in the same way you train for muscle memory (math memory? )

When I first started doing this (with a 1911), I had trouble counting rounds after about 4 or 5, even on the range. I kept at it, and moved into ever more complex exercises (movement, cover, multiple targets, etc.) and while I never did perfect it (& probably never will), it did get easier with time and practice. Now, I don't give it much thought; it's pretty much automatic. Just as you said, it's practice, practice, practice.

That said, you shouldn't ignore practicing swaps at slide lock though. If you do miscount, you need to be able to switch to slide lock mode just as easily.
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