Leaving Glock Mags Loaded

This is a discussion on Leaving Glock Mags Loaded within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by glockman10mm A good practice is to leave a round or two out, so the mags are not under full compression, and rotate ...

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Thread: Leaving Glock Mags Loaded

  1. #16
    Member Array tennvol's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    A good practice is to leave a round or two out, so the mags are not under full compression, and rotate periodically.
    Incorrect. Constant cycling, ie compression and decompression causes springs to go bad. Back in the day the Army said to download mags to extend their life....but you know.... the Army is always right. Before PMAGS it was difficult to reload a AR15 on a closed bolt unless you had 28rds in the mag, another reason for big Army to advise downgrading mags.

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  3. #17
    Distinguished Member Array Knightrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcain007 View Post
    Pretty much sums it up for me as well.
    Me too.
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  4. #18
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    I've had my Glock 19 mags for over 10 years. They are always loaded. I have never had a failure to feed (from the mag) issue....EVER!!!
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  5. #19
    VIP Member Array Thanis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Passin' Through View Post
    Do you leave your spare mags loaded? For how long and does it hurt the reliability?
    I don't think you have much to worry about. However, I have for mags. I let one rest unloaded say every few months.

    My understanding, loading and unloading is what wears them out. While sitting unloaded is best, it is only a slight concern.

    Quote Originally Posted by Passin' Through View Post
    Thanks for the info. Anybody keep the 31 rounders loaded for periods of time?
    I don't own any of the extended mags, but I'm thinking I would more often then not, store those unloaded when not in use.
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  6. #20
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    spring damage due to cyclic loading and unloading

    I see where many have commented that it is the cyclical loading and unloading of spring tension that causes damage to pistol magazines, or at least shortens their effective life. To this, I will reply with an answer that I saw on another website. The springs which open the valves in your vehicle's engine are being constantly compressed and uncompressed. While not the exact example used, it went something like this: Suppose you are driving along at a speed requiring 2 thousand rpms. That would mean that each of your valve springs are being compressed and uncompressed 2 thousand times every minute, or 120 thousand times every hour. Let's say you drive that car for 100K miles,....depending on the vehicle you drive, the number of spring cycles must be somewhere way up there in the trillions of times.

    But being a natural worrier about everything, I too wondered about leaving my Glock mags fully loaded with 15 rounds. At the present, both are fully loaded. Since it costs a lot to shoot a 40 S&W, and hurts my hands too, I only carry the two mags when I go to the range. I appreciate the advice given here already, and feel much better about leaving them maxed up.

  7. #21
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    I've had my G19 with the same 3 mags since '93 or '94. When not in use, they're fully loaded all of the time. Always worked reliably.

  8. #22
    Member Array MMinSC's Avatar
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    This is somewhat related, but concerning AR15 mags. The failure point for these is not the spring under tension, but the feed lips. By using the Magpul dust covers, the tension of a fully loaded Pmag 30 is kept off the lips.

  9. #23
    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    1. Yes - at least a couple for each gun.
    2. As long as I need to, and No

    Nearly any quality magazine made in the past 25 years has used good steel for the spring. Leaving a mag loaded for an eternity won't hurt it.

    What will reduce a spring's force (spring constant) and reliability is a lot of cyclic loading - that is, loading it to max deflection and unloading it.

    If you do a LOT of shooting, either dedicate some mags to range use, or simply rotate your mags. The more you have, the more important it is to number then to keep track of 'em.
    This here

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  10. #24
    Ex Member Array DetChris's Avatar
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    I leave mine loaded all day every day. You hurt your mags by constantly loading and unloading the springs. Not keeping it loaded.


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  11. #25
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    I have 25 G-19 mags that I use for Training/Gunfighting Courses. In the bottom of my bag I have a couple that have now been loaded for 4-5 years. I am building a new home and will be documenting everything I have including mags for guns and their current status before the move. My carry mags have all been loaded for 3 years as I do not rotate them. They are loaded with the original batch of Winchester Ranger T that I tested the gun with in one of my first Gun Fighting courses. You run 350-500 rounds thru mixed mags over 2 days and all perform flawlessly that is good enough for me. They all have a metal mag floorplate with my name and number on them. Easy to track. I also have a ton of mags for my other Glocks including 4 of the 33 Round "Hotel Specials". Those go with my on trips out of town and into the gun in the hotel room. Yes, I bought well before 2008 for "Social Ammo" and have bought over the years for reloading supplies. I do not have to go looking for anything right now or in the near future.
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  12. #26
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    why is it always the people with one post that resurrect the 4 year old threads? How do they even find them? Make it stop!!!
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  13. #27
    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    I leave all of my magazines loaded and empty magazine is a useless magazine

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  14. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by DetChris View Post
    I leave mine loaded all day every day. You hurt your mags by constantly loading and unloading the springs. Not keeping it loaded.


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    Think about that for a second and you'll see the irony of what you said.



    Time's up. I think we can all agree it's the compressing/un-compressing that cases spring wear, right? So what difference is it whether someone compresses the spring immediately after shooting it empty, or before use (or whenever)? It's still one compression. This leave it full or empty debate is pointless in regards to spring wear. The owner can do whatever he/she likes--you're still exerting the same wear. Leaving them empty, however, will help to avoid spring set--whether that's a factor in spring life span or not.
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  15. #29
    Senior Member Array CR Williams's Avatar
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    I've got Glock mags that have stayed loaded in excess of a year. I suspect some have been loaded as long as two years. Those I put in a gun eventually have all functioned normally and without hiccups.
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  16. #30
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    It's a Glock, what could possibly go wrong?

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