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  #1  
Old 11-04-2012, 3:51 PM
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Default Long term storage of mags with ammo

Will this damage the springs?
Is this bad for the mags?
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  #2  
Old 11-04-2012, 4:19 PM
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No to both.


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  #3  
Old 11-04-2012, 4:29 PM
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There's obviously a wide definition of long term but I personally wouldn't.
It's generally understood that people have and haven't had issues. I have personally witnessed glock mags that failed after being stored liaded for approx 7-10 years. But it would be a pretty crappy day if you needed the mags and they retained just enough memory to start causing weapon malfunctions..
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Old 11-04-2012, 4:33 PM
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With quality springs and magazines there are no problems with long term storage of loaded mags. It is NOT generally understood that people have had issues. Cops, mil, and CCW people are carrying around loaded mags for long periods of time with no issues. And for that matter, the recoil springs and mainsprings in all of your guns are kept in a partially compressed condition. Cycling springs is what causes them to wear out, not keeping them compressed in a static state.
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Old 11-04-2012, 4:36 PM
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Not going to be a problem, the problem would be with taking the ammo in and out. Imagine a paper clip what happens when you bend it back and forth?
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  #6  
Old 11-04-2012, 4:39 PM
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I was advised by a LEO to not keep the mags loaded fully,so there is not quite as much pressure on the springs....
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Old 11-04-2012, 4:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m1match View Post
With quality springs and magazines there are no problems with long term storage of loaded mags. It is NOT generally understood that people have had issues. Cops, mil, and CCW people are carrying around loaded mags for long periods of time with no issues. And for that matter, the recoil springs and mainsprings in all of your guns are kept in a partially compressed condition. Cycling springs is what causes them to wear out, not keeping them compressed in a static state.
Maybe read what I write before trying to correcting me? That's what I stated.
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Old 11-04-2012, 4:52 PM
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no,

also you can just buy new springs if it ever becomes an issue
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  #9  
Old 11-04-2012, 5:49 PM
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What about feed lips? Will they deform over time loaded?
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Old 11-04-2012, 6:36 PM
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Not sure what you mean by long term. I've gone weeks and a few months and never had a problem.
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Old 11-04-2012, 6:38 PM
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Maybe some truth to both. In the Marine Corps, we were trained to load only 28 rounds in our 30 rd mags.
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  #12  
Old 11-04-2012, 7:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uhlan1 View Post
Not sure what you mean by long term. I've gone weeks and a few months and never had a problem.
Like if you pack your BOB and let it sit for six months to year with out using the mags.
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Old 11-04-2012, 7:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob_e95482 View Post
Maybe some truth to both. In the Marine Corps, we were trained to load only 28 rounds in our 30 rd mags.
That's because some M-16s won't load with a fully loaded mag. Hell, sometimes my AR won't pick up the first round in a fully loaded 30rnd mag in NV.
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebird View Post
What about feed lips? Will they deform over time loaded?
Modern springs will generally be fine (although if we're talking about several decades in the future, they might not be).

Mag bodies and feed lips may deform depending on how the mag was designed. M1911 mags are notorious for slightly ballooning at the sides after a long period of being loaded. It doesn't necessarily affect functioning, but it does prevent the mag from dropping free on ejection. Double-stack mags will probably be fine because ribs are designed into the bodies to prevent this deformation.

Periodically, hold your old mag next to a new mag and see if anything is different. If the angle that the round is being held is different, and it affects functioning, toss the mag and get a new one.

On a poorly designed mag, you could possibly see the seam splitting after years of being loaded, and that of course would prevent the round from being held by the feed lips. You'll notice this when the magazine automatically unloads itself.
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  #15  
Old 11-05-2012, 12:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sully007 View Post
Will this damage the springs?
Is this bad for the mags?
Can you define long term? Are we taking months or years? Under what conditions? At home in a bag, box or safe? An underground SHTF stockpile? Can the ammunition be cycled? Can you dissemble and clean the magazine periodically? Can you remove the spring or at least unload the magazine and let it decompress for 24 hours? Can you simply use the damn thing every few months?

I can't answer your question... But I will say that anyone who intends to leave a magazine loaded and untouched/unused for a long period of time is asking for problems. That's not to say the spring has been compressed and won't expand, but how do you know it's not filled with rust? How do you know the ammunition is reliable? The possible issues are numerous.

People who leave their magazines loaded for "7-10 years" are just stupid and don't deserve to own a firearm. I don't understand the logic, or lack there of.


EDIT://

By the way; this issue has been beaten to death. It's like AR vs AK, or some brand name "fan boy", everyone will have a different opinion.
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  #16  
Old 11-05-2012, 8:47 AM
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Per last months issue of American Rifleman, (paraphrasing) "although impossible to predict whether an actual problem would occur, it would be best to rotate the magazines every couple of months...."..

You may wish to ask those who say there is "no problem" whether they would leave their firearm in the cocked postion for months on end.
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  #17  
Old 11-05-2012, 9:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalPlinker View Post
Can you define long term? Are we taking months or years? Under what conditions? At home in a bag, box or safe? An underground SHTF stockpile? Can the ammunition be cycled? Can you dissemble and clean the magazine periodically? Can you remove the spring or at least unload the magazine and let it decompress for 24 hours? Can you simply use the damn thing every few months?


EDIT://

By the way; this issue has been beaten to death. It's like AR vs AK, or some brand name "fan boy", everyone will have a different opinion.
See post #12
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  #18  
Old 11-05-2012, 9:51 PM
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I don't know about 10 rnd magazines but in 30 rnd with 5.56 it definitely weakens the springs in the usgi mags. They would jam much more often when left loaded for over 2 months.
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  #19  
Old 11-06-2012, 10:01 AM
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There are so many arguments why you should or shouldn't. There a probably a lot of factors to take into account. Too many to fully explain in one thread. I'll say this: I read an article in G&A magazine about two 1911 mags that were loaded in 1945 at the end of WWII, kept in storage for 50 years, and fired from a modern 1911 with no failures. All 14 rounds fired perfectly. No problems with the spring tension or ammo.
Based on that, i usually don't overthink the issue.
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  #20  
Old 11-06-2012, 10:33 AM
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i rotate my loaded mags when the time changes (fall back\spring forward). keep it simple to know when it needs to be done as well as i dont have to track anything.
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  #21  
Old 11-06-2012, 11:22 AM
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I read another one of these threads where a metallurgist chimed in and said the same thing that m1match did: cycling springs wears them out. I'm certain that you don't have to worry about the springs.

However, many people have pointed out the other possible issues. Crap getting inside the mag or rust forming. Possible feed lips deforming. Possible magazine body failures due to seals splitting or body cracking.

You mentioned 6 months in a BoB. I think that would be just fine. I assume that you keep some water in there that you periodically cycle. I suggest checking the mags when you cycle your water. If you go shooting, take the mags with you every once in awhile and run some ammo through them. That should keep your confidence level in your BoB pretty high.
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