Ever since I picked up shooting I’ve listened to the debate about the dos and dont’s when it comes to storing magazines loaded or unloaded.
I am going to throw some fuel to the fire to this ever-lasting debate. A person I know, let’s say he used to work in the business but now retired, messaged this story a while back and I think it’s interesting to share and get some feedback.
Translated from the original text:
“I wanted to check the truth about the springs in the magazines. Can you really store the magazines fully loaded?
Said and done, I measured the free length of the magazine springs marked “Colt” (they don’t make them themselves) and put the magazine back together.
I topped the magazines with 30 rounds of military 5,56 in January 1987.
Then I got married. Then we moved and had children. The magazines were the least of my worries and I forgot about them.
In the spring of 2007 I found the magazines again.
WOW! 20 years had passed!
I emptied the magazines and measured the free length of the magazine springs again.
I call Bulls*it that you should only use a maximum of 28 rounds if you’re using a high quality magazine”
Free Length of magazine springs – 20 years storage 30 rounds – Colt magazine
Jan -87 April -07 May -07
1 269 mm 264 mm 265 mm
2 268 mm 265 mm 265 mm
3 269 mm 265 mm 265 mm
I realize this “test” is probably not to be considered conclusive at all, but it’s not everyday you get twenty years of data like this.
I guess the most interesting part would be to know if the magazines actually worked in a rifle? Unfortunately the story doesn’t tell.
What’s your take and experience? Do we have any more people here with long-term stored magazines who can share their experience? Steel magazines? What about Magpul PMAGS?