Just Dyeing for Custom Magazines – The Ultimate RIT Dye Guide by GunMagWarehouse

Released to collective “Huh?”, Magpul’s Sand colored magazines have been an odd duck. The “Sand” coloration scheme has been slow to grow on the market. In fact, I have never seen one on the range for the thousands of AR’s I have been around. My theory is that the color is too light to strike the attention of the tactical and tacticool crowd. It’s closer to white than it is brown.

However, the Sand colored magazine does have a major argument in its favor, its can be customized to nearly any color, albeit with a bit of work. The Sand colored magazine can be dyed using various COTS products to nearly any color. As such, my hat’s off to the guys over at GunMagWarehouse, who put in the work to create the near full rainbow of colors and show shooters what the Sand colored magazine can look like.

15539019_222054728243869_272505392779493376_n2

While GunMagWarehouse does not disclose the specific method by which they dyed the magazines (they say that’s another installment), the most common method is near boiling water (180 F), 4 ounces of dye, and 30 minutes of exposure.

The total cost to dye a magazine is typically inexpensive, barring the sweat equity. The dye clocks in at ~$3 for 8 ounces, which will color quite a few magazines. Just be careful not to spill the dye water! Its permanent in most cases.

Check out all the colors over at GunMagWarehouse. 



Nathan S.

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

Nathan can be reached at Nathan.S@TheFirearmBlog.com

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


Advertisement

  • BlueMarlin Blues

    The sand colored polymer is also the newest and strongest formulation.

    • Gregory

      Please provide your source for this fact.

      • ostiariusalpha

        Magpul. You can believe it or not, but that’s the source.

        • Gregory

          It is not whether I believe it, I want to see it for myself.

          • ostiariusalpha

            Scepticism is healthy, so feel free to buy several of the M3 Sand and standard black PMags, and increase weights on them to see for yourself which ones crack or buckle first. That will give a more definitive answer if you aren’t to lazy and cheap to do more than cynically spout about how untrustworthy Magpul is.

          • Gregory

            You seem to be trying to pick a fight where there is no reason to fight. I simply want to see for myself or is that not allowed? I do not know where you get off saying lazy and cheap, especially when I just shelled out over $2200 for a rifle, a sight and magazines. Perhaps you have me confused with someone else .

          • ostiariusalpha

            No, I think I’ve got your number pretty well.

          • Twilight sparkle

            This is something magpul stated at the launch of the sand mag, if you want a test of their claims you can try it out yourself.

          • iksnilol

            Where can we find the claim is all, just curious. No need to get antsy, pardner.

          • Twilight sparkle

            I would post a link but it’d take awhile, search YouTube for “magpul pmag m3 sand” and you’ll see one of the original videos, the thing about them being stronger than black was in an interview but you can also read it in the discription of the video I mentioned.

      • BlueMarlin Blues

        Google is your friend

  • Cleetus

    I want to see a tactical tie dye camo pattern now.

  • pun&gun

    Stealth Gray plz

    • Ross

      Leave the gray in for less time. You can always go more if it’s not dark enough. Not sure if the black or grey would be a better starting color.

      • pun&gun

        I’m actually a bit surprised you can use the black as a base at all. O.o

  • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

    I see a practical application in keeping 5.56, .300Blk, etc mags easily distinguishable. Of course spray paint still works great.

    • Jim Slade

      I did a batch of just the dust covers in red to differentiate standard rounds from the super-varmint $2 dollar bill flavor… comes in handy once in a while.

    • iksnilol

      Or just electricians tape.

      • zardoz711
        • iksnilol

          Y’know what is worse than boring?

          Having a fancy pants mag that in a non matching rifle.

          • Bill

            Mismatched camo patterns is a major redneck hillbilly fashion faux pas, I imagine it’s a capital offense in the tactical crowd.

          • Klaus Von Schmitto

            Last weekend a guy showed up at the range rocking a Mossy Oak shirt and RealTree pants. He swore it was an accident but we shunned him anyway.

          • CountryBoy

            When worlds collide…

          • CountryBoy

            The penalty is a good “whupping”.

        • iksnilol

          Y’know what is worse than boring?

          Having a fancy pants mag that in a non matching rifle.

  • Ross

    Does this mean I can get Foliage again, now that they’re going to come out with furniture in this color? It would have been really cool for Magpul to publish recipes to match a variety of standard colors, especially those they discontinued.

    If only I didn’t stock up on mags before the election, or Gen3 Sand was available and cheap during the stockup. Oh well, what’s another 20 more AR mags, right?

    Also, I see a lot of Taupe, Camel, and Purple in our future.

    • Jim Slade

      The reality for Magpul is that any recipes they published would probably be hit with a quick cease-n’-desist letter from whatever conglomo owns Rit over their product being applied to anything in the firearms industry. Sad, but it is what is.

      • Nicholas C

        Actually no. Did you read the Gunmag Warehouse article? I wrote it. And dyed all those mags myself.

        I reached out to Rit Dye and they were excited. They sent me all those bottle.

  • PK

    Oh, good! That’s the only reason I buy anything sand colored from Magpul, and I wondered if people bought that color to use as-is.

    • ostiariusalpha

      I imagine there is at least one person out there that wants their rifle to be the color of French vanilla.

      • Core

        I think it’s more a Tahitian Vanilla..

    • Mort

      Yep, I did. I bought a few white Pmags (…I call ’em, “white) to easily distinguish carts/bullet-weights. For instance, a very common day is having black mags with 55g M193, and white mags with 62g M855… or 69g Sierra Match BTHP and 77g BTHP, and so on. I don’t give a good goddang how tacticool my rifle looks (i.e., the new Operator Tacticool is to NotGAF about how Operator Tacticool you look… or maybe I’m trail blazin’ here…). Besides, my rifle is a BCM in fit fighting trim, so I could put pink My Little Pony stickers on my mags and still have massive street cred milsurp. YMMV with all y’alls’ new PSA/Spikes frankenbuilds with the double-dong logo and “Zombie Killer” dust covers (you know, the one you’re planning on listing for $1200 on backpage next month when your rent’s due…). White Pmags, I dig ’em.

  • DanGoodShot

    If I’m not mistaken this is what Magpul intended the sand color mags to be used for. I’m pretty sure when they 1st came out on Magpuls website the fact they take die well was in the description for the magazine.

  • So does the dying of the plastic effect its UV resistance or any other properties? looks like they need to remember Roy G Biv for thier pictures, at least if you are semi OCD like most engineers.

  • Rick O’Shay

    That top middle one is just begging for some banana stickers from Black Rifle Division.

  • Phillip Cooper

    Wow, must be hard to fill the blog every day with good content….

    • SPQR9

      I know right, this is great. I love crafts.

  • VictorVector

    I accidentally ordered some while panic buying before the election. Decided I couldn’t live with near white mags (although they’d be great snow camo!)

    I used RIT brown (I don’t remember the exact color, but it was some flavor of dark brown) and left them in for a long time.

    They came out that cool dark brown color of GI Joe accessories from back in the day. Awesomeness! I went on to paint some of them in a tiger stripe camo by wrapping them in jute twine and spraying over the brown with Krylon camo colors.

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    I guess you could also dye the sand colored grips, stocks and hand guards to match, right?
    Might be kinda cool.

  • Big Daddy

    Still trying to find out how to dye them FDE & OD Green Magpul to match my guns. There’s two colors that are close but I’ll be damned if I’m going to spend $50 trying to dye $13 magazines. I’d like to find someone who knows exactly what colors to mix and in what quantities.

    • Mandaloin

      Aervoe OD Green Seni-Gloss will get you as close to Magpul OD as you can get. Granted, I’ve only ever tried that on black mags. YMMV on sand mags.

      • Big Daddy

        Yeah I used it on some AR mags it’s close.

        • Core

          You can use an online color spectrum generator to determine which dye to mix and in which quantity. Using basic color mixing you should be able to get the colors you need. You can make any color from the primary colors except white..

          • Reginald Pettifogger

            As the ladies like to say: Black goes with anything.

          • Core

            It also sticks out like a sore thumb under anything but zero light. It’s useless unless you’re out on a night on the town..

    • Mandaloin

      Aervoe OD Green Seni-Gloss will get you as close to Magpul OD as you can get. Granted, I’ve only ever tried that on black mags. YMMV on sand mags.

    • Nicholas C

      Magpul is making FDE Gen3 mags now. So you don’t have to bother.

      • Big Daddy

        It’s for AK mags, I have a mutant FDE and 2 KS 47s in OD Green. I have a bunch of AR Magpul mags already. But am looking forward to the new ones.

  • Emfourty Gasmask

    whatever happened to black duct tape

    • SPQR9

      They used it all up on their last “date”.

  • stephen

    I guess I’m old fashioned – I don’t care about coloring books or coloring my magazines.

    😉

  • Joe

    “It’s closer to white than it is to brown.”
    “Foliage Green” -Blueish Gray
    “Urban Gray” -Gray
    “Desert Sand” -White
    Off topic, but I appreciate finding out about the Camel color, looks pretty close to Coyote.

  • Edeco

    How I get chinchilla color? Kidding. Seriousely would dying a clear Lancer work?

    • ostiariusalpha

      It would work, but you’d progressively lose translucency as you let it sit in the dye longer.

  • Bill

    I found out the hard way to never dye anything in the wife’s cookware. I’m still paying for it.

    • Goodwill cookware and the range on the grill ❤

      • CountryBoy

        Or, cookware the wife has “donated” to the cause – old pans

  • tiger

    Brown & Black for everything gets borring.

  • None

    If only there was a company that did this. I don’t really want to get into this but I want some matching furniture.

  • diana pierce

    Forget about it ! Krylon paint … millions of colors… is the do-all for any camo work… fast and lasting ….easy re-coating too … and sticks to just about everything but water.

    • Doom

      paint will chip, dyeing would be permanent.

      • diana pierce

        Krylon paint will not chip. it may scratch to the metal but that will happen with dye or any other applied substance. in fact krylon will be better able than dye to not allow deeper scratches on a metal surface… or any surface for that matter. Give it a try. Incredible patterns and colors can be created and fast. Krylon does have flat, dull, earthy colors too. Also, Rustoleum. Even Walmart brand as a flat black at 99 cents per can and it is most durable. Been using these paints for many years now. Dye is too labor intensive to accomplish the specific need. However, each person must use whatever they decide is best.

        • Doom

          This is for dyeing plastic, not a metal surface. for metal I agree, Paint or something like dura or ceracoat would be better. Im not even sure you could dye metal with something as mild as RIT dye.

          • diana pierce

            Now that you mention it… I haven’t done this but I do suppose dye would stain/affix itself on any kind of finish and keep its color as long as the base is not deeper than the dye color… lighter khaki’s may be just fine… be it atop metal or plastic. other paint or cerakote et al may just provide a good base for it to stick and show itself off.

  • Doom

    plum plum plum plum plum is love plum plum plum plum plum plum plum plum is life.

  • jonp

    I have a number of sand colored mags. I use them specifically for 300BLK for an easy ID.