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Posted: 3/24/2002 2:25:18 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/8/2003 10:24:36 PM EST by Troy]
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
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Link Posted: 9/4/2002 6:17:35 AM EST
DPMS & Bushmaster both sell mag rebuild kits, complete with new floorplates, for around $5.50. I think the Bushy floorplates are stamped BMI, and the DPMS one's are blank.
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Link Posted: 9/8/2002 2:17:01 AM EST
I got my GF's from Brownells, along with Wolfe extra power springs. These have worked GREAT in both my older grey finish mags as well as some DPMS black teflon mags. I use moly Dri-Slide lube on the inside of my mags. They have been totally reliable. One mag even went bullets down into some fine Arizona dirt. All 28 rounds fed and fired thru my Bushmaster M4 Preban upper. I think GF's are essential gear.
Would John Wayne be having this conversation?


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Link Posted: 9/9/2002 3:50:27 PM EST
Troy, you ROCK man!!! This question JUST came up today, and you read my mind like six months ago. If I were in need of a religion (I'm not [:D] ), I'd make you like the Grand Smack Daddy of Magazinedom, and send you monthly offerings of 20 rounders. Pop quiz - What mag question will I have in Feb. 2003??? [:D]
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Link Posted: 9/9/2002 4:10:44 PM EST
garandman, lemme guess: You tried out Troy's mag follower exercising with a ruler technique, right? Doing it can make bad mags good! Try it!
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Link Posted: 9/11/2002 2:44:54 PM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 11/8/2002 6:35:52 PM EST
Troy,I was in the Army at the time when we changed over to the M-16,I did alot of Full Auto fire,bursts,etc,and I NEVER HAD A MALFUNTION,using the Alloy followers..Of course at the time all we had was 20rnd mags,and only put 18rnds in the mag,I always snuck 1 in the Pipe,to at least have 1 more rnd..I was actually envious of the AK47 with their 30 rnd mags that never seemed to jam,but I did like the last rnd open bolt we had..Do you know how well the 30rnd mags that were first issued faired..Were there many FTF's??? I was out of the Army in 1970..Thank God..(just wondering)since I never heard of any problems,though I was busy hunting a differant Prey: heh heh!!
FnFal Freak..
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Link Posted: 11/13/2002 11:30:34 PM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 11/13/2002 11:43:32 PM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 11/14/2002 9:36:23 AM EST
Originally Posted By Troy: Due to the thickness of the alloy follower in the 20-rounders, the follower tended to track pretty well in the mag. Plus, the mag body was straight, which also helped. -Troy
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yeah, noticed that mydamnself. you can put your finger on the very front or rear of the alloy follwer and push straight down to full compression without binding, try to do THAT with a 30 and ANY follower.
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Link Posted: 11/15/2002 4:17:46 PM EST
Originally Posted By GreyRider: I am unsure how to rebuild my mags. What is the best way to go about it? Are there special tools? It seems the logical way to do it would be to bend the retainer prongs/tabs on the bottom of the mag so that the plate can be removed, but I can see those tabs breaking off when bent.
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IMHO, You need a flat thin screwdriver or knife plus... A green follower, and some Wolff Springs
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Link Posted: 11/28/2002 5:13:37 AM EST
For anyone joining this thread on the 2nd page ---DO NOT BEND THE TABS---. They will break off. Read earlier posts to see how to do this.
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Link Posted: 12/8/2002 7:22:48 AM EST
Troy What about loading 18 in a 20 or 28 in a 30 to prevent spring fatigue? Is that practice based in fact or is it yet more AR bunk? Regards Q
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Link Posted: 12/18/2002 2:03:53 PM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 3/5/2003 12:27:07 PM EST
Does anybody make a short true 5 round mag for hunting? I have found some but they look like 20's blocked to ten's then blocked to 5's. Can you help me rate the Bushmaster,MWG and John Mason 5 rounders? Which of those are the shortest? Any help will be much appreciated.
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Link Posted: 3/15/2003 11:19:12 AM EST
I have several Sanchez 30-round mags with black followers, and have fired many hundreds of rounds from them with ZERO problems. Just my .02... Steve
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Link Posted: 3/26/2003 1:28:45 PM EST
Kinda new to ar15 getting one soon. Where is the Pushrod in the riffle? and how does this affect "new" rifles. Is this something I will want to look into changing out (ie Aftermarket fix?) Thanks in advance.
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Link Posted: 5/9/2003 7:31:54 PM EST
Troy--have you tried any of the orange followers?? i had purchased 20 of the greens and replaced the black followers in my 30 rd mags---i noticed that they seemed to be tight and still did some tilt--to make a long story short--i just recieved my first 12 pcs of the orange followers---as i started to switch the orange for the green, i noticed that the orange fit alot better in all my mags, including my british mags. On closer examination i noticed that many of the dimensions are smaller on the orange units--if you have any, take a look at them compared to the greens--also as i cycled the mags with the orange units i did not have any "tilts" like i had with the greens--let me know what you think-----JIMBO
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Link Posted: 5/10/2003 6:06:05 PM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 5/20/2003 7:20:58 PM EST
Do you guys have any opinions on SAW Sales (Ken Elmore) "extended life" magazine springs (the reddish colored ones)? And is there a way to tell the "cheap" GF's from the good ones? I have installed a few of them and they seem to work fine (but then again, I've never had problems with my BF's either...I have 99% Okay or Colt mags...and I think the Colt mags are all made by Okay..along with a few Sanchez, Cooper, and some mystery mags that look milspec)
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Link Posted: 8/11/2003 9:24:07 PM EST
I have a few of the british sa80 parkerized steel 30rd mags, I took the black follower out to replace it with a green follower. The black one says england on it and is exact in size and shape as the usgi green ones............is this the uk's version of the green followers and should they work the same?
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Link Posted: 8/12/2003 2:11:04 PM EST
Yeah, those British mags----I have a few of them and could not get them to load from stripper clips. Was going to sell them, but someone suggested I replace their black followers with some green ones. Did that last night. I still can't get them to load rounds from the strippers, plus they still bind, tilt, and generally don't run smoothly at all, especially at the very front of the follower when it meets the very top of the mag. This is all with pushing down the followers with a pencil, screwdriver, etc. Haven't shot them with the GF's yet--who knows maybe they shoot fine? I did notice the followers that came with these mags were identical in shape to the green ones I put in as replacement. So what's with these mags? Why can't I get them to load from strippers and why do they seem to bind so bad?
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Link Posted: 8/17/2003 10:13:22 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/17/2003 10:20:25 AM EST by 1001001]
Regarding Troy's comments on the pseudo green followers he's definetly correct on them. I made the mistake of purchasing a few at one of the larger gunshows in my area off a dealer's table. To a one, every single one I installed in five 30 round magazines would cause failures about every round to every second round. I discarded them after testing and then ordered two packages from Brownells. When I received them the packaging was marked DPMS and these have worked great in conjunction with the Wolff extra power springs. I would advise people wishing to purchase these to order them from a verifiable source as to their origin. Fudgie, I was interested to read your comments as I purchased one English steel magazine yesterday to test and evaluate. One thing I noticed right off on examination is that the top of the back of the mag, the cut out that the stripper guide fits over seems to be spread slightly further apart than on the USGI mags I have stocked. I'll test it out this week and maybe we can get together on info and see what develops with these items.
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Link Posted: 8/30/2003 7:56:09 PM EST
This is a very useful thread. I always wondered what was special about green followers, and I had the exact failure this is supposed to fix several times today. None of my mags have the green follower. Now off to Brownells website....
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Link Posted: 7/23/2004 8:30:52 AM EST
[Last Edit: 7/23/2004 8:31:41 AM EST by drofnas]
20 rounders.

I just ordered some Colt 20 rounders.

Does the whole "green follower" issue apply here? Should I just leave the old ones in? Obviously they are likely to need a rebuild anyway.

(I ordered some GF's when I ordered my 30 rounders.)
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Link Posted: 7/26/2004 1:15:21 PM EST
I have thoroughly enjoyed this topic, which would ordinarily sound scary (like I have no life), but I am absorbing the data and the experience on AR15 mags.

I am hoping that you guys can point me to the right info, in case it was asked before:

Does anyone have experience in blocking mags down to a lower capacity, or know of a link, measurements, descriptions, actual photos or details that teach the same. I may wind up in an area that would require it, and want to know what AR15 and M1A mag work I should plan. I don't suppose someone has productized this already. I do have a small supply of GF Bushy 10rd mags, but would want to know how one could reduce some Colt 20rd silver-metal follower units (very smooth) down to 10- or 15-rd., so I don't have to divest myself of them. Purely for academic study only.

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Link Posted: 7/26/2004 3:49:03 PM EST
As you may observe from my recent post on this thread, I don't know much on the AR15 front yet, but learning. I have found a couple other VERY useful sites from here though. Either may have an answer to your question if you don't get one here.

Troys Mag FAQ's Page

Maryland's AR15 Site

Hope this helps.
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Link Posted: 7/26/2004 3:54:33 PM EST
BTW: I think I found the answer to the GF question regarding the 20 rounders.

As I understand it, it doesn't really apply. They don't really fit anyway. It will reduce round count in the 20 without modification. With no bend (like the 30) the follower dropping isn't a concern.

If I am wrong on this, please chime in and let me know.
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Link Posted: 8/3/2004 11:47:21 AM EST
Seems like certain mags are more problemic than others. Mags with black followers from Cooper Industries are the only ones that I've had trouble with.
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Link Posted: 8/4/2004 12:48:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By EvilLS1:
Seems like certain mags are more problemic than others. Mags with black followers from Cooper Industries are the only ones that I've had trouble with.




It's probably the magazine body. Coopers were pulled from military use about 1992 or '93 due to out of spec bodies.
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Link Posted: 9/15/2004 8:47:38 PM EST
Magpul makes some awesome followers that have an anti-tilt rail at the front and the back, they fit better inserting them into the magazine and track a LOT better inside the magazine body than the old green ones ever did.

The package they came in said they used teflon in the construction, to help lubricity I guess.... My mags don't jam anymore, haven't yet with these followers and Magpul Ranger plates.

$0.02
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Link Posted: 9/30/2004 4:44:00 AM EST

Originally Posted By sungunner:
I have thoroughly enjoyed this topic, which would ordinarily sound scary (like I have no life), but I am absorbing the data and the experience on AR15 mags.

I am hoping that you guys can point me to the right info, in case it was asked before:

Does anyone have experience in blocking mags down to a lower capacity, or know of a link, measurements, descriptions, actual photos or details that teach the same. I may wind up in an area that would require it, and want to know what AR15 and M1A mag work I should plan. I don't suppose someone has productized this already. I do have a small supply of GF Bushy 10rd mags, but would want to know how one could reduce some Colt 20rd silver-metal follower units (very smooth) down to 10- or 15-rd., so I don't have to divest myself of them. Purely for academic study only.




I'm wondering if anyone has an answer to this one. It's a problem common to our state (Peoples Republic of New Jersey). 15 rounds are legal and sure would be nice, but no out-of-state suppliers or gunsmiths that I'm aware of provide new, blocked, or pinned magazines with a permanent maximum volume of 15 rounds. Possession of these +15 round magazines here is barred by our state AWB, thus we can't alter them ourselves. I'd imagine anyone who produced these for ARs, 10-22s, or any number of other common types, would really clean up in the PRNJ. Forgive me, I'm a newb, but I've done several exhaustive searches on this and other sites, without having come up with any results. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
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Link Posted: 9/30/2004 9:12:46 AM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 9/30/2004 9:29:55 AM EST
You're absolutely right, and this is an excellent idea. Thanks! As a matter of fact, the next time I go out to PA to visit a friend of mine, where 20 rounders can be legally purchased and possessed, I'll go ahead and do some experimentation and will post a new thread for all the New Jerseyans like sungunner who want their 5 extra rounds. Sorry for the brief highjacking of this thread, I won't leave any more off-topic posts here.
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Link Posted: 10/1/2004 7:59:25 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/1/2004 8:00:51 PM EST by rsilvers]

Originally Posted By Quiet_Shoez:
you can put your finger on the very front or rear of the alloy follwer and push straight down to full compression without binding, try to do THAT with a 30 and ANY follower.



So what about the Magpul followers? I just got a dozen of them and they seem awesome. They do not tilt at all, even if you push on one side with a pen. They have 3% Teflon in them for self-lubrication, and they are easy to insert because they can go in straight (they do not need to be tilted to get into the mag body). Oh, and it is pretty much impossible to put the spring on backwards because it is designed to not allow it. I just redid my mags with them and with the chrome-silicon springs from Brownells (Prairie River Arms but IMSI also has some for more money). The springs are rated for 500,000 cycles. Never need to change or even think about the spring again. I bet my rebuilt "supermags" are better than the new HK mags and for 1/3 the price.
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Link Posted: 10/8/2004 3:21:11 AM EST
umm I have broken a couple off !!! what am I missing how do you get the floorplates out wihtout bending the tabs ?
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Link Posted: 10/14/2004 3:51:56 AM EST
Since Troy said there were some problems with cheap GF's, where is a good source to buy GI issue, or equivilant (sp?) followers?
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Link Posted: 11/15/2004 7:20:58 PM EST
Has anyone TESTED the Magpul followers to detemine if they are superior to the ritious green or orange followers? I rebuilt all of my 30s with the greenies three years ago (with Wolff springs) and they have run well. Yeah, I know...if it ain't broke...don't fix it and I certainly do not plan to swap the GFs for the Magpuls. However with the glut of surplus mags on the market with the demise of the AWB I may not be able to resist acquireing some tired ol' 30 rounders that need to be rebuilt. Are the magpuls worth the extra $s for anything OTHER than the coolness factor?
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Link Posted: 11/16/2004 4:16:00 PM EST
What Brand of green followers are good to buy and who and price from I would like some good cheap followers.
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Link Posted: 12/27/2004 4:04:26 PM EST
RE: Troy's thread on cutting wooden dowels and sending them to dealers to fit into the mags and send them to folks in NJ. Do you know any dealers by chance that would do this? and do you think that members who have mags to sell in the Equipment Exchange would be willing to do this?

I'm very interested in purchasing 30rd mags that are blocked to comply with the 15rd limitation.
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Link Posted: 12/28/2004 11:55:31 AM EST
Ammo FAQ: www.ammo-oracle.com
(Old) Mag FAQ: magfaq.tripod.com
Barrel? Go CHROME or go home.
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Link Posted: 3/2/2005 6:51:13 PM EST
The only real dificulty I had concerning the green followers was during stripper clip loading. I'd have some rather serious binding issues. I have had a few failures I could possibly attribute to followers. All of my mags are mil-surplus 30s and one Colt 20. Never had a problem with the shorter 20 but that's most likely due to shorter spring travel (less opportunities for binding and doubling over). Haven't had too many problems with the 30s except for when the weather gets bitter cold. I think the freezing temps take some of the lubricity out of the polymer used in the followers and give them a higher likelyhood of tilting over.

I just installed three of the new Magpul followers and must say that so far I'm impressed. I can't make them tilt over without putting stress that would absolutely not be encountered during regular usage. I'm about to go to the range with them and I'll let you know how that goes but, I predict success.
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Link Posted: 3/16/2005 2:36:11 PM EST
In a firefight in Phu Bai, I had a well maintained M16A1 jam (chambering issue) with the 8th 30 round magazine. I never had a problem with 20 or 30 round magazines in a shooting war. In my view, this was a case of maintaining the equipment that made the difference.

By the way I was firing aimed fire semi-auto rather quickly and marking targets for my men also. The ammo was 5.56 mm with some tracers for target marking. Like many fights of this type, it was over as quick as it started. We won and they didn't. The only auto fire was from some M60's.

We recognized magazine problems but like many M-16 problems, much of it was due to poor maintenance and questionable ammo. The basic weapon was fine. As a shooter, I discovered that it could hit fairly well beyond 300 M. I did supplement my M16's with a couple of M-14's for long range shooting prior to the designated marksman concept.

Personally, I never had any issue with Colt magazines. All metal with no plastic followers.
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Link Posted: 9/2/2005 8:08:20 PM EST

Originally Posted By CPTKILLER:


Personally, I never had any issue with Colt magazines. All metal with no plastic followers.



+1. My colt 30's and 20's with all metal work great. I also have reciently purchased cheap 30's and 40's and got some Magpuls to re-fit them. We will see how that goes.
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Link Posted: 12/29/2005 7:11:42 PM EST
I have two of the Bushmaster 5rd Magazines they look like they were 10rd mags modified to hold only 5rds the are smaller then the 20 rd mags I have. they have functioned flawlessly.
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Link Posted: 2/2/2006 4:56:10 AM EST

Originally Posted By Troy:
Also, there was no GOOD reason to only load 18 rounds in the mag, but here's why it happened:

In the beginning, M193 ammo was issued in boxes, loose. GIs would typically dump out the boxes into their ponchos and proceed to load their mags. Sometimes, they would overload the mags, as you can force 21 (and sometimes 22) rounds into the mag. This is BAD, of course, and can (and usually will) cause a failure to feed. This was eventually fixed by issuing the ammo on loaded stripper clips. 1 mag = 2 clips of ammo.

The other problem was that GIs would disassemble their mags for cleaning and remove the follower from the spring. Because the spring connected to the follower in almost the center, it was easy to put the follower back on the spring backwards. You wouldn't notice a problem until you tried to load the mag. That's when you'd notice that it was difficult to put more than 18 rounds in the mag, and if you forced the last two in, it would bind the follower and you'd have no spring pressure to feed the ammo. This was "solved" by instructing GIs never to remove the followers from the spring (though of course I'm sure it still happened sometimes).

By '68 or so, most units were correctly filling their 20 round mags with 20 rounds, and not having any problems. But some units, who were trained the "old" way and/or who believed all of the myths and mistruths that were spread about the M16, would still train the "18 in a 20" method. Some folks STILL underload their mags to this day, and there is NO reason to do so.
-Troy



I was in the USAF in Thailand in 1969-70, and when they mobilized the base during a drill, they issued us all M-16s and five 20 round magazines, each loaded with 15 rounds. Since the magazines stayed loaded for probably years at a time, I assume they wanted to make sure that the springs didn't compress. I'm not sure how valid a concern that is, since I've fired a M1911 magazine that that sat around loaded with 7 rounds for 40 years or so. Not my preference, but it did work.
Basic
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Link Posted: 2/21/2006 10:48:22 AM EST
What if any is the difference between 20 and 30 round green followers?
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Basic
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Link Posted: 3/2/2006 12:03:12 PM EST
The 20 rounders have shorter "legs" and are all aftermarket. I think they are identical to "black " 20 round followers but are the "cool" (at least in 2003) green. Green followers are soooooo old fashioned.
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Link Posted: 4/25/2006 9:27:30 AM EST
[Last Edit: 4/25/2006 9:29:18 AM EST by engineer2001]
Tapco has 30-rd magazine revitalization kits (5 new GI springs and green followers) for 10 bucks.

www.tapco.com/product_information.asp?number=ZMAG0905

I just bought one and put it in 5 used 30-rounders w/black followers that I bought for $5 each, and I have good as new mags for about $7.50 each. Awesome deal, if you plan to upgrade your followers and/or springs on your 30-round mags. These used mags work like new w/this kit!

Plus, Tapco is local for me, so I can pick up w/no S/H fees.
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Link Posted: 9/5/2006 3:41:52 PM EST
I have several Surplus 30 round mags that need replacement followers, and found
the grey/brown magpul's (3 for $7.50) and the green tapco's (5 for $9.95 w/springs) online.
Is the magpul a newer (better) follower and worth the extra $$?? also do I really need to replace the USGI Springs with new ones when I replace the followers or is that optional? thanks.hinking.gif
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Link Posted: 9/5/2006 3:43:01 PM EST
I have several Surplus 30 round mags that need replacement followers, and found
the grey/brown magpul's (3 for $7.50) and the green tapco's (5 for $9.95 w/springs) online.
Is the magpul a newer (better) follower and worth the extra $$?? also do I really need to replace the USGI Springs with new ones when I replace the followers or is that optional? thanks.hinking.gif
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