How many magazines?

How many magazines?

This is a discussion on How many magazines? within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I, in my arrogance, have always been of the opinion that any new or refurbished semiautomatic pistol should come with three quality magazines. Stay with ...

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Thread: How many magazines?

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Euclidean's Avatar
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    How many magazines?

    I, in my arrogance, have always been of the opinion that any new or refurbished semiautomatic pistol should come with three quality magazines. Stay with me on this.

    The reason why is that of course you need at least one to make the pistol function. You should of course have a second one because often the easiest way to clear a malfunction is to replace the magazine, and just for the sake of redundancy.

    I personally do not carry a third magazine because my pockets/belt are already full of other crap, including my other gun, which I will reach for long before I grab another magazine in all hope. Of course I hope to never require the services of either gun but I'm getting off track here.

    But even then I think you should have a third magazine even if all it does is sit in an ammo can just in case something goes wrong with one of the others, you lose one in the field, etc.

    I only own two such pistols, but for the XD40 I have 6 factory magazines and for the P89 I have 5 magazines and want to get 1 more. Even for my revolvers I have at least 2 speedloaders or speed strips for each one. With a revolver, two speed loaders is effectively the same thing as having 3 magazines provided you keep your cylinder loaded.

    Personally I'm slowly adding to my stock of spare magazines and speedloaders all the time. For me it's not about having some kind of tactical reload option in the middle of a battle in the mall against the enemy ninja clan, it's about redundancy. In the case of many handguns, it simply won't function, or at least not very well, without a magazine. Or something crazy might happen to you, and do you want to sit there with anything less than a fully loaded firearm in its aftermath? I sure don't.

    I've personally called the magazine the bane of the self loading pistol and I stand by it. It's an easy to overlook piece of equipment, and even if you are the best gunfighter on this earth and are firing the finest SIG, 1911, or Glock in the world, a minute defect in your magazine can ruin your day. I also feel that in most quality pistols, it's the part most likely to fail on you namely because it's the only part expressly designed to be separated from the rest of the gun with great ease. Not to mention all the headaches a bad magazine can cause. An $1800 pistol with a slightly ill fitting magazine can exhibit all sorts of problems that it shouldn't have.

    I will add one more consideration to this as well: Use good quality magazines that make the most of your firearm. Sometimes you may be compelled to use aftermarket magazines for various reasons. Do your homework and make sure to test all magazines for function.

    Speedloaders and speed strips are a little safer bet. There's not a whole lot of people making them compared to how many people might make magazines for your gun. I have never personally encountered such a product that was somehow defective or flawed.

    So how many magazines/speedloaders are probably enough? As always it depends on you. For me personally it's six because most trainers require you to come to class with 6 magazines or speedloaders for your gun, but I feel I could get by on 3 magazines for a semiautomatic or 2 speedloaders/speedstrips for a revolver otherwise.


  2. #2
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    I added several more for my SIG - managed to get three ex LE 15's and from another forum, a member sold me 2 20's he had which were unused - these are all factory. I did get some crappy eagle mags for use in IDPA - well, they are about Ok but certainly not good enough for carry - you get whatcha pay for!

    The std SIG mag's that came with gun are a pain - only 10 rounders for starters but with two of them, may as well call 'em nine rounders. I defy about anyone to get a 10th in!

    I managed to get a whole load of Argentinian mags for my BHP - they all work great. So - I think I have 10 for that and the SIG, including the smaller mags, totals 8.

    For sure there needs to be some plan for redundency - Murphy factors even! For carry I rarely carry more than one spare 15 - I also have a large crap burden - just too much stuff. Only add a third mag if going somewhere very much higher and obvious risk, if unavoidable.

    I have a boatload of speedloaders but having found Comp 1 and Comp 2 loaders to be best - have all but retired all my HKS..... tho they do work, after a fashion. two Comp's tho for carry are fine.

    I would agree, a new gun should ship with more than 2 mags - three should be minimum.
    Chris - P95
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    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


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  3. #3
    Member Array Lawrence Keeney's Avatar
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    I have five Glock mags, and wish I had about three more. I want enough that I can load eight in case of some shtf situation.

  4. #4
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    I have always believed in having at least 6 extra mags or speedloaders for my firearms.

    I enjoy shooting my guns and not spending all my time reloading 1 or 2 mags.
    Heroes are people who do what has to be done, when it has to be done, regardless of the consequences

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  5. #5
    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    lets see 1911 probley 30 and adding Glock 17 6 or 8 springfield xd 4 ruger p90 4 etc etc just depends when i see good deals on them how many i buy

  6. #6
    Member Array MechE's Avatar
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    The first thing I do when I get a new handgun is make sure I have 6 magazines for it. I always buy more as I find good deals at gunshows or the internet... 6 is just a min. My reasoning is that I'll need three good ones for carry and three that I can beat up and drop during IDPA matches.
    "EVERYONE is operating with only partial information" :hand27:
    Some Wise Guy, USA 2001

  7. #7
    Member Array MechE's Avatar
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    Your right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Euclidean
    I, in my arrogance, have always been of the opinion that any new or refurbished semiautomatic pistol should come with three quality magazines. Stay with me on this.
    Euc, I don't think you are arrogant on this...You are absolutly right. The reason they give you two is just a marketing thing. It's simple micro economics...They want you to buy more magazines. I know a gun shop in State College PA that only sells one magazine with each new pistol. The guy just takes the other mag from each pistol and sells them seperatly. I was helping a young college friend buy his first pistol. We were looking at Glocks and Sigs. The dealer told me Glocks and Sigs are only shipping with one magazine. What an a$$! Needless to say we never shopped there again.
    "EVERYONE is operating with only partial information" :hand27:
    Some Wise Guy, USA 2001

  8. #8
    Distinguished Member Array RSSZ's Avatar
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    Part of my pistol break in procedure is to break in my mags also. I want to be sure that they function and fit properly. At the range,early in the Am,when there are no other shooters around,I put all kinds of different pressures on a inserted mag. I hold down on it and fire,push laterly on it and fire,and push hard upwards on it and fire. I basically rock it back and forth in the mag well and check for feeding problems. I have 6 mags for my CCW. All are OEM (stamped). I have marked on my calender the dates to change them out. Every 2 weeks I download 2 of them and upload 2 more. Is that really necessary?? For me it is! When at the range I have all my mags for the weapon that I am firing and I rotate through them. I work over my mags (new ones) even before I shoot them. They are dissasembled,all parts cleaned and lightly lubed thoroughly,the feed lips are highly polished,all burrs/rough spots removed,checked for dents and general imperfections, and then reassembled and used to see if the function is up to MY standards. I use only (IMHO) high quality mags. I have stated in other posts that I use only Kimber mags in my CCW. I have 950 rds. through the 6 mags and not one problem that I can associate to the mags. Just me? Just luck? I don't know,but my mags WORK. I use CMC mags for my other 1911's (Colt's). For my other weapons I have "plenty" of mags. Hey,----can you ever have too many mags ???---------

  9. #9
    Senior Member Array CombatEffective's Avatar
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    For my Ruger P95/PC9 combo, I have six 15-round factory mags. I have several 10-round factory mags, and I have a few aftermarkets that seem to function fine.

    For my Glock 27, I have the two factory mags that came with it as well as three G23 13-round mags.

    For my S&W 4006, I have five 11-round mags for it.

    For my 1911, I have the two factory 7-round mags (not reliable) and three Chip McCormick power mags (2-10s/1-8). I'll add a few either Tripp or Wilson Combat mags for the 1911 at some point.

    I have three factory mags for the 4013.

    I say that three true capacity mags for a carry gun is a bare minimum. Five is probably the true minimum you should have. The 1911 and 4013 have not gone into the carry stable as of yet. I always look to add more Ruger mags when cash permits as I have the pistol/carbine combo that use the same mags. I have a belt set up to hold four mags and a two-mag cuff case on the carbine. In an emergency situation I can slap on the belt and grab the carbine and I have eight 15-round mags at the ready that will work in both the pistol and carbine.
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  10. #10
    VIP Member Array ExSoldier's Avatar
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    I think the magic number here seems to be six. I feel like I have to have a minimum of five spare mags plus one in the gun. Especially for single stackers. Hi-caps seem to be an investment in case an AWB ever goes into effect again. I watched my Glock M21 13rd mags go from about $20 each to over $100 each almost overnight. We used to joke at our IDPA matches about competitors leaving hundred dollar bills lying about after reaching slidelock and dropping them. I could get by with three hi-caps, but would prefer to have six or more, each.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

  11. #11
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    I'm with Bud on this one, I have 32 mags for the 1911s (but that's only 3.2 per gun, I better buy more ).
    "The pistol, learn it well, carry it always ..." ~ Jeff Cooper

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  12. #12
    Senior Member Array rfurtkamp's Avatar
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    I average about 10 per pistol that I use with regularity. I have a few that have no spares, but they're there for collection purposes or rare use range toy, so it's not that big of a deal.

    For my Sig 226s, I have a box. I think I have about 25 hi-caps now.
    Driver carries less than $45 worth of remorse.

  13. #13
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    I think I have about 25 hi-caps now.
    So - it was you cornered the market!
    Chris - P95
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    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


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  14. #14
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    I have a minimum of 3 mags for each pistol and for some I have as many as 8.

    Since I have over a dozen pistols, that means a lot of mags. I'm not even gonna go into what I've got for my 3 AR's,AK's and G3 but I am a firm believer that it is better to have too many rather than not enough.

    Suffice it to say that they take up alot of room in my two safes...

  15. #15
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    10

    I have at least 10 top quality mags for all my "carry/use" pistols.
    My Walther p38 NONE since I would rather have had the $50.00 than ever shoot that totally useless P.O.S. ever again...so I sold it on Ebay.
    19 (plus some spare parts) for my S&W model 41...My favorite plinker
    MANY for my evil black rifle including two factory 50 rounders.
    Only 4 factory mags for my bug PPK/S
    5 for my Glock
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

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