View Full Version : 1911 magazine followers ... how loose or tight?

Lead Waster
08-19-2016, 11:37 AM
So, previously I've had issues with my TRP not locking back on an empty mag, though those same mags lock back my RIA. I went nuts and for all my (bought used) Wilsom ETM mags, I bought the "ETM Flat Wire Magazine Springs". Which are significantly shorter than the round springs that were in the mags.

Anyway, last night I swapped out the spring and follower for 9 WC ETM mags. I found that typically, the followers have some friction to them sliding up and down the body. Not a little friction, enough that gravity can't move them. THe springs, of course can easily move them.

Is this nornal? I have some Chip McCormick Power Mags, but the followers are steel and the WC ETM mags have plastic followers.

Would some powdered graphite help? Or is this normal.

I have NOT yet tried the magazines, as I did it last night.


08-19-2016, 6:42 PM
From my experience this isn't normal. I haven't experienced this in any ETM mags. Also, I wouldn't use the powdered graphite. Don't need that junk getting into your gun and gunking it up. Contact Wilson and get them to fix the mag or send you a new one. Whenever I've had trouble with Wilson's followers (usually worn out to the point they can't reliably lock back the slide), they will send me a new follower no charge.

BTW, this is the reason why I mainly use either Power Mags or Tripp mags for my 1911s.

Bill Steele
08-19-2016, 6:53 PM
Anytime I have a 1911 magazine issue, I put a Tripp Super 7 rebuild kit in it. It has never failed to fix that magazine.

08-19-2016, 8:05 PM
Get it back to Springfield. A 1911 should work with any quality mag. If a mag works in one gun, it should work in another 1911. Just my humble opinion.

Springfield will issue a call tag no questions. A lot cheaper than throwing random magazines and fixes at the gun hoping it will fix the problem. Wilson or Tripp or Power Mags, they're all pretty pricey compared to free and maybe 2 weeks of your time (time spent at Springfield).

08-19-2016, 9:43 PM
I would test the mag theory first.

Take the slide off, put the slide stop back into the frame, insert mag (don't slap it in, just slide it in). Does the mag follower move the slide stop easily? Take the mag out, and move the slide stop up by hand. Does it move easily? Does it seem like it takes a bit of effort to move the slide stop up by hand?

Sometimes it can be a slide stop / plunger issue. At least in my limited experience.

I am no expert, but I would first see how the slide stop moves against the plunger that sits in the plunger tube. If there is a lot of resistance or a noticeable step in movement, that could be the issue. And look at the surface of the slide stop that the plunger rides against. Any burrs? Does the plunger tip look nice and rounded and smooth?

Believe it or not, I got a pin set made by Nighthawk (at least their name was on the baggy) and the plunger tip had a small sharp "extra tip" sticking out (poor machining). That would be a good way to make the slide stop not move easily...

08-20-2016, 10:56 AM
have you taken the followers out and cleaned them and the inside of the mag body?

08-21-2016, 11:38 PM
Get it back to Springfield. A 1911 should work with any quality mag.

He said they're Wilson Combats... :reddevil:

I've had exactly the same follower problem in a 47D.