H&K USA has just released new polymer 30 round magazines for the AR15/M16 platform:
Oddly enough, there is not much competition in the way of transparent M16 pattern magazines. The biggest player has been the Lancer L5 mags, which cost $19.99 from Brownells and I can say that I do have some and they work quite well. However, the new H&K mags directly from the H&K Web Shop cost only $19.95, saving you $0.04 over the Lancers! Ok, so that isn’t exactly enough of a price difference to justify one over the other, but keep in mind that those are direct from HK prices, and I imagine if/when retailers get ahold of them the price will drop significantly (like how companies run $10 Magpul magazines from time to time yet you can buy them from Magpul for their suggested retail price).
Anyways, it is pretty obvious as to where these new mags draw their inspiration from:
The magazine with the coupling attachment points is a G36 magazine that I use in my SL8 to G36 conversion. The magazines feel just as stout at the G36 magazines too, and the magazine well relief cut was definitely made to be compatible with the H&K 416 assault rifle. However I decided to see if it worked with some other platforms on the market today.
Locked in and worked great with a generic AR15 variant:
Worked with my short FNC:
Worked with an ACR:
And even with a SCAR 16s. You see, the SCAR is notorious for hating Magpul magazines and using pre-generation 3 mags can cause significant damage to the rifle because it props up the bolt catch just enough to rub the bolt head. To see if this problem was evident with the new H&K polymer magazines, I took the lower off and inserted a loaded magazine:
The magazines in no way raised or otherwise interfered with the bolt catch.
So great, they lock into all sorts of rifles and serve as a huge window into how many bangs you have left, but how do they work? Well, I figure any magazine worth its salt should be able to handle fully automatic fire…
I enlisted the help of my friend Chris, a class II manufacturer of firearms to bring out a post-sample M16 lower with a shrike upper that I was more than happy to help him break in:
The M16 with its high cyclic rate ate the magazine up like candy, but I wanted to see how they ran in my FNC so I let Chris do a mag dump with it:
It also worked perfectly as I have come to expect HK products to.
So that’s that. They are $19.95, they are clear, they work, and they are for sale now.