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Old April 19, 2013, 11:50 PM   #1
Join Date: January 10, 2013
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Newbie asks "How to tell if an online seller's magazine will fit?"

I'm new to handguns and have never yet bought a magazine separately from the gun it came with. I'm thinking about upgrading the magazines in some of my guns to higher quality magazines. How do I know which magazine will fit?

I have, for instance, a Colt Officers ACP. It happens to have a Kimber magazine in it. How did the previous owner know that a Kimber mag would fit his Colt?

Here's a more difficult one because the model is not as widely owned as a 1911.

I have a Taurus 24/7 .45ACP G2C. It uses double stack mags. How do I know if a mag will fit the gun and that it won't cause more problems than the two stock mags it came with?

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Old April 20, 2013, 01:08 AM   #2
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As you already know the 1911 platform is perhaps the only generic platform for a pistol. That’s the reason why aftermarket magazines by Wilson and others will fit a Colt.

Aftermarket magazines for other brands and model of pistols is generally not a good idea. My experience with Promag has been terrible like failure of the slide to lock open after the last round or to load the last round. I was desperate during the previous AWB and wasted several hundreds of dollars on aftermarket magazines. I would have had more pleasure flushing it down the toilet. Best to use only OEM (original equipment maker/manufacturer) magazines, the magazines that originally came with the pistol when new.

For online aftermarket do a comparative analysis of various sites for your specific model. CTD (Cheaper Than Dirt) has/had a catalog of various aftermarket magazines along with OEM magazines.

Best to go to the bigger gun shows because there are sellers that specializes in magazines and take the pistol and/or mag with you. The pistol and/or mag are needed even for OEM magazines because the magazine may come in various capacities or versions with some small differences even a specialist may not know. I experienced this with the Beretta 21A in 25ACP. In terms of variation even the OEM may have either a metal or plastic floorplate. And there are different versions of follower too for the Glock and Walther polymer pistols.

Last edited by 745SW; April 20, 2013 at 01:17 AM.
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Old April 20, 2013, 10:21 AM   #3
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many manufactures do not make their own magazines.
many popular guns with high priced factory mags get knock offs made.

Just like there is a spec to any parts on the gun, there are specs for the mags, that the manufactures follow, so they can say it will work with xyz guns.

checkmate, mecgar, metalform are 3 of the major manufactures for oem mags.
Mags from these companies should be gtg.

promag is known for their crap quality, and should be avoided when possible.

That said, all mags can be hit or miss in specific firearms.
for a carry gun, you have to check each one out on their own till you are confident it has no issues before you carry with it.
They can be fine RANGE mags, but only carry what you know works every time.

even oem can be bad sometimes.

but the 3 above and oem mags generally give you a pretty good shot at getting one that works fine.

be wary of people that don't tell you who made the mag, or don't show you packaging or markings.
buy known makers for carry mags.
range mags can be whatever you find cheapest that works.
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Old April 20, 2013, 12:03 PM   #4
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Kimber mags are checkmate IIRC. Should have no issues working in a Colt.

I have a Taurus 24/7 .45ACP G2C. It uses double stack mags. How do I know if a mag will fit the gun and that it won't cause more problems than the two stock mags it came with?
I would stick with factory mags because the only aftermarket mags I am aware of are Promags which are crap.
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Old April 21, 2013, 04:18 AM   #5
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I was shooting my Taurus 1911 today using magazines made by Colt,Mecgar and Kimber and they all ran just fine. I have also used Chip Mccormic, wilson
and Triple K with no problems. All of my 1911s run all my magazines with no problems.
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Old April 21, 2013, 02:22 PM   #6
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You be careful. Your Colt Officers .45ACP is not a full sized 1911. When buying magazines make sure you insure it is OEM or aftermarket correct fitment for your particular model gun. Until you learn what will and will not fit your guns, best to call customer service (nearly every on line web site has one) and ask if the magazine you are considering will work for your model gun.

I have Kimber magazines that fit my Colt Officers .45 ACP as well as Wilson Combat. Sometimes I interchange them but they do not fit all my 1911's. Just as a point of information, I shoot my guns a lot and have worn out the springs in several Kimber magazines. Nothing that a new spring won't fix but I have only worn out the spring in one Wilson Combat magazine. Both are good so make your own determination here.
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Old April 21, 2013, 03:03 PM   #7
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Buy name brands and you will probably have no problem. Buy unknown and unmarked cheapies at Joe garage sale ( he has one a week ) then you pays your money and takes your chances, and the odds are not in your favor because old Joe has a no return policy.
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Old April 21, 2013, 03:15 PM   #8
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I prefer a OEM magazine, but I have bought many MecGar mags, and
they have been flawless and high quality. Just buy the one specifically for
your particular make and model gun and you will have no problems.
and as others noted, they make mags for gun makers also.
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