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gdeal
September 7, 2007, 01:37 PM
I don't like having to load and shoot at the same time. I have five magazines that I can fill up the night before so I can at least shoot 50 rounds without having to reload. My question is how long can I have the magazines loaded like that? I know you are not suppose to leave them like that for a long time but I was hoping that more than 12 hours would be ok. I don't always have time the night before.

Magyar
September 7, 2007, 02:01 PM
I know you are not suppose to leave them like that for a long time but I was hoping that more than 12 hours would be ok.
Not a problem in your situation...I load up multiple mags all the time prior to shooting....You might # your mags in case one might act up on you & you can check it out later...
There have been a number of posts on this subject with varying opinions about spring strength. Some say forever, others take a dimmer approach.
For me, if I know the mag will not be fired for a lenght of time: I just load one less....:)

JohnKSa
September 7, 2007, 02:21 PM
Single stack, standard capacity good quality 1911 magazines? Keep them loaded all the time if you want.

The only pistol magazine springs I've heard of problems with are double-column mags where they're trying to squeeze the last bit of capacity out of them. Even that seems to be very rare these days. I think designers figured out what they could and couldn't get away with.

madmag
September 7, 2007, 04:07 PM
15 years plus should be OK. If the springs are good to begin with, then no problem. It's the number of times you compress & un-compress springs thats the only issue.

KFDiesel
September 7, 2007, 05:56 PM
I use Les Baer mags and have kept them loaded all the time. Never had a problem. Stock Kimber springs did compress for me tho. The Les Baer have been constantly loaded for a couple of years.

Tom2
September 7, 2007, 07:03 PM
In one of my paperback gun books, some old guy kept his .45 auto from WW2 and loaded mags. Never unloaded them after 45. This was some time in the 90's and the mag that loaded in WW2 and the gun that had not been fired since then, functioned perfectly when he and a friend tried it out. Even the old ammo worked(steel cased) but of course it was ball ammo so some degradation in the springs might or might not be as critical with ball as with funky shaped bullets? Some mags tolerate being loaded forever, some get weak and crap out over the decades even if not loaded. Modern hi grade mags probably not that critical. Load em and shoot next week if you want!

madmag
September 7, 2007, 11:36 PM
I have a Winchester .22 rifle I first used in 1948. It's manufacture date is 1927. The springs in this rifle are original (at least from 1948) and have been in partial to full compression since that time. I do take very good care of this rifle and lubricate the springs..etc, but I still shoot it to this day. All of the springs work like new. Also, I have a GI .45 mag. made circa 1942 and it still works great. So, I just smile when someone worries about having springs loaded for two weeks or such.:)

One disclaimer. Springs can wear out with very high numbers of compressions (or extensions), depending on the application. Spring compression is not such a big problem, but spring fatigue due to compression cycles can be a problem. Having said that, I have seen springs hold up for hundreds of thousands of cycles in industrial machine use.

BacardiJimRNB
September 7, 2007, 11:47 PM
Good info, I leave two mags per gun loaded all the time.

What about a Winchester 1894 same thing??

madmag
September 7, 2007, 11:58 PM
What about a Winchester 1894 same thing??

I see no reason why not. They knew how to make good springs in 1894.

JohnKSa
September 8, 2007, 12:29 AM
What about a Winchester 1894 same thing??Depends. I've definitely heard of weakened spring in tube feed guns. I've heard of more than one ND facilitated by a gun that had been emptied (action worked until no more rounds came out) which then fired the next time the action was worked and the weakened spring finally coughed up the last round.

Here are some things that cause springs to wear out/weaken/fail:

Being cycled. (Normal wear--this is a very slow process.)
Overcompression. (This can shorten and weaken a spring relatively quickly.)
Substandard materials. (This can cause a spring to fail prematurely due to either cycling or merely compression.)
Poor spring (spring system) design. (This goes back primarily to overcompression but there are also other design factors that can shorten the life of a spring such as sharp bends in square profile springs or spring stock that is too thin for the application.)
Improper or substandard manufacturing process.
Excessive heat. (We're talking very high heat, not what you'd encounter in the normal operation of a firearm.)
Extreme cold. (Metals get brittle when it's very cold.)

BluesBear
September 8, 2007, 03:55 AM
I recently replaced a split forearm on a friend's 94 Winnie .30-30 that he got as a HS graduation gift back in 1976.
It's his home defense carbine and the three days I had it was probably the longest it's been unloaded since he got it.
I put 30 rounds through it just to double check point of impact after fiddling with the barrel bands. I didn't notice any weakening of the magazine spring.

I know he keeps it loaded with 2 rounds of NOS Glaser Safety Slugs (I don't think they make them for .30-30 any more) and four rounds of jacketed hollow point ammo. As far as I know the only time it's ever been unloaded has been the couple of times he's taken it out shooting with us, or the few times he's taken it hunting, so it's essentially been loaded 24/7 for the past 30 years.

As for 1911 magazines...
Unless you're using some of that el cheapo chicom junk, your mags can be left loaded for decades with no ill effects on the springs.

JohnKSa
September 8, 2007, 01:23 PM
I didn't notice any weakening of the magazine spring.To be fair, the only reports I can recall specifically had to do with .22LR rifles. I have seen experts recommend that tubular shotgun magazines be underloaded when left for long periods, but I can't recall ever reading of a failure due to a weakened shotgun magazine spring.

BluesBear
September 9, 2007, 01:03 AM
I've got a Mossberg 500A that my Dad bought me brand new when I turned 14. It's so old it only has one action bar. It was my first shotgun and I've used that gun a lot over the years. About 12 years ago, due to sentimental reasons, I decided to semi-retire it. I now let younger guns experience the bumps and dings of everyday life. Plus it would certainly break my heart to have it sitting in some evidence locker.
Its duty for the past seven years has been standing guard in the closet protecting the living room. It gets unloaded, wiped down & lubed every February whether it needs it or not. Every August, to celebrate our birthday, I take it to the range, fire 10 to 20 rounds through it, clean it and reload it with fresh ammo. It is still one of the best shotguns I have ever owned. The old factory installed red recoil pad is looking kinda rough and is living on borrowed time, but the magazine spring still spits one into the follower each and every time you give it a shuck. I figure it will long outlast me.


I notice that the old designs just don't seem to have many spring problems.
I wonder if it might have something to do with being designed and built by craftsmen who understood what worked and what didn't instead of just being slapped together by bean counters only interested in the greatest profit margin.

Tom2
September 9, 2007, 07:33 AM
Off the top of my head I can recall only two bad mag springs, a WW1 era Savage auto 380 that went soft and would not feed well, and a cheap Raven that got weak and caused jams, and a new mag for 5 bucks fixed that.

Night Watch
September 9, 2007, 08:28 AM
:) Load down by 1 or 2 rounds and you can keep them that way forever!

You need this:

UpLULA (http://maglula.tripod.com/uplula.htm) :D

BluesBear
September 10, 2007, 04:15 AM
Load down by 1 or 2 rounds and you can keep them that way forever! Why is it that whenever the discussion is about magazine springs in any sort of gun, somebody always has to show up and spew that drivel? :barf:
This thread isn't about 1960s era 20 round M16 magazines. It's about modern day .45 handgun mags.
:rolleyes:

If you have to download your .45acp magazine to insure it will work then you have a POS magazine to begin with. You need to either toss it in the trash or replace the spring with a proper, in-spec, one.

Night Watch
September 10, 2007, 09:57 AM
:eek: Easy, big fella! What? Was your mother frightened by a downloaded magazine, or something?

What you've said reflects a strong personal prejudice; but, it simply isn't true. My uncles carried 45's in the Second World War. They were instructed to download by one round in order to insure feeding and reliability under conditions of harsh use and weather. Downloading a magazine is a valid technique - No matter the war, it works!

You don't know what's inside a new magazine - especially if it's for some pistol like a Glock. The spring could come from anywhere. If you don't want to download, fine; but, don't get your panties all atwitter because someone else does. I've got more than 50 years of experience with firearms, worked in gun shops and gunsmiths too. I read all the firearm websites and know what the popular thinking is.

I, also, know what does and doesn't work in the real world, too. :cool:

Take the example of Glock's 10 round magazines. They're very tight! Leave one of these fully loaded for an extended period of months; and, all of a sudden, you'll have last round feeding problems. There are plenty of other examples, too. So enough of berating me about downloading. I was probably taking firearms apart and rebuilding them before you ever touched a gun.

When you actually know what you're doing, you don't have to read, 'gun commando stuff' on the internet in order to get by. I know what I'm doing with guns; downloading can be a useful method and should NOT be flatout criticized.





(And, yes, I know: 'Loading and unloading, flexing and unflexing a magazine spring is what wears it out.' There, I said it for you! ;)

Magyar
September 10, 2007, 11:31 AM
Load down by 1 or 2 rounds and you can keep them that way forever!

Why is it that whenever the discussion is about magazine springs in any sort of gun, somebody always has to show up and spew that drivel?


Well, let's see. Bill Jordan, Skeeter Skelton, et al recommended the one less round in their Q & A's over the years...I will assume it was from experience & common sense....I think they had forgotten more than you & I put together.
Without all the surmising, there have been many tests on the subject: springs will suffer a reduction of poundage over time when compressed. Some more than others....All the Uncle Joe's WW11's withstanding, just because it fires doen't mean they didn't have a reduction in spring strength....:rolleyes:

BluesBear
September 11, 2007, 04:57 AM
I was probably taking firearms apart and rebuilding them before you ever touched a gun.

When you actually know what you're doing, you don't have to read, 'gun commando stuff' on the internet in order to get by. I know what I'm doing with guns;

Ding, ding, ding, ding,

And here we have another person who "assumes" so much without having a clue about the person he's preaching to.

So care to guess again Sparkey?

Once again the thread is about the modern day .45 ACP magazine.

Night Watch
September 11, 2007, 08:38 AM
:rolleyes: You're still wrong. Race ya to the ignore button! :D