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View Full Version : Magazine ID: Inch, Israeli, Indian, Metrics, interoperability, et al


Sturmgewehrg3
August 19, 2000, 16:38
I am in the market for a preban ('89) FAL.
I was going to buy some mags before hand.
Do the SAR-48, FNs, and Steyr FALs all use metric mags? I assume only L1A1s use the english mags. Is there FAQ for FAL newbies?

Thanks

Farmer from Hell
August 19, 2000, 20:12
Commonwealth guns ie England, Australia, etc use inch mags. They cost about twice as much a metric ones which are more plentiful.

FfH

Sturmgewehrg3
August 19, 2000, 20:50
Thanks for the info. I've heard one type of gun can accept either type of mag but not the other way around. For instance, metric could accept either metric or englsh. I am not sure this is correct.

kev
August 19, 2000, 22:03
Inch guns will accept inch or metric, but it's an advantage of no real value. The metric mags are seldom reliable in inch guns. Inch mags are a couple dollars more expensive than metric and a little harder to find, but I wouldn't let that decide for me. Buy whatever gun you find that you like and invest in a dozen or so mags. You'll be set.

Farmer from Hell
August 19, 2000, 22:04
Inch recievers should accept both but metric will only accept metric. I have shot metric in my inch reciever and have had no problems. I cant speak for the rest of humanity.

FfH

[This message has been edited by Farmer from Hell (edited August 19, 2000).]

Celticjedi
September 20, 2000, 22:01
I just dug out some mags that I am goign to refinish and I have some questions of what some of the markings on them were. Mag #1 is samped with "80YN" and #2 with just the "YN",the YN marks looks like they are in Hebrew and I asume are from Israel. Mags #3 and #4 have a "4" in a circle on one and a "23" in a circle in the other. #5 Has no marks what so ever. i would liek to know where these mags are from and if they are all Metric mags of if they are Inch pattern. Thanks

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Lovly Spam! Wonderful Spam!

NZ L1A1 Collector
September 21, 2000, 00:46
The 80YN are FN made magazines for Israel. The YN mags are Izraeli made mags.

In regards to mags 3, 4 & 5 I would need to see pics of the mags and have to take some measurements.

I need to know what the mag followers look like and the number and positions of the 'dents' in the reinforceing rib on the back

------------------
Kevin Adams
Rifle, 7.62 mm, L1A1 Collector & Researcher.
NEW ZEALAND

[This message has been edited by NZ L1A1 Collector (edited September 21, 2000).]

Brad/gunthings.com
September 21, 2000, 00:47
1 and 2 are Israeli, 2 and 4 could be Austrian. Do they have witness holes? Are they parkerized or blue (in other words they are not black painted)? How about some more details on #5? Later, Brad/gunthings.com

Celticjedi
September 21, 2000, 00:47
Okay they are all like the one on the left so they are metric. Also the 2 mags with numbers stamped on them have the numbers around an Inch below that notch in the front. I do recall seeing three holes on the back of some of the mags I will check on that when i get home (I am at work! http://www.fnfal.com/forums/smile.gif ) and the mystery mag was at one time painted black i was trying to get the rest of the paint off but it was going nowere!

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Lovely Spam! Wonderful Spam!

[This message has been edited by Celticjedi (edited September 21, 2000).]

Brad/gunthings.com
September 21, 2000, 00:51
If the numbers are really tiny with an oval around them, and they are original finish parkerized or blue, they're Austrian (especially if they have those witness holes). I will watch as Kevin Adams (New Zealand) magically identifies the mag that was black painted and has absolutely no markings.

[This message has been edited by Brad/gunthings.com (edited September 21, 2000).]

EMDII
December 21, 2000, 08:22
Q for Kevin, L/FN, and the other RKIs.

I have three Inch-pattern magazines. Following are some descriptors.

Body:
marked on LS (left side), near top, rear with-
D66 (D has a small horizontal bar inside the loop at midpoint)
marked on LS, parallel to long axis, near bottom-
9600017 (I suspect a UK/NATO part or cage code)

Floorplates have 1959 and later date stamps and UK parts codes

Followers:
One has a short BHO tang at the rear. The other two have longer tangs extending downward into the body cavity.

Ideas?

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1*.....Train Like You Fight: Second Place is NOT an Option.

E.M. (Ted) Dannemiller II

[This message has been edited by EMDII (edited December 21, 2000).]

recce
December 21, 2000, 09:12
The D with bar is for Enfield (E stamped over D)Not sure what the LS is about. Generally, if it is stamped all over with part numbers it is Brit. Don't know about Aussie's, but none of my Cdn mags are marked at all.

Mr pogo
February 01, 2001, 04:56
Remember this was talked about on the old board but forgot details.

Metric, body finish is black paint with nonparkerized shiny blue/black followers. Beak is about same or slightly bigger than my Austrian Fal mags. Slightly different base plate, removal hole and ear is slightly bigger than the Austrians. Wondering if these are Belgium, Argies, or something else. TIA

[This message has been edited by Mr pogo (edited February 01, 2001).]

[ September 09, 2001: Message edited by: gary.jeter ]

Mr pogo
February 03, 2001, 03:24
BTT
Come on you guys! I know somebody can answer this.

EMDII
February 03, 2001, 03:47
I recall these as Argentine, IF they have no bizarre aleph markings. Belgians, IIRC, have witness holes.

------------------
1*.....Train Like You Fight: Second Place is NOT an Option.

E.M. (Ted) Dannemiller II

Master Blaster
February 04, 2001, 14:22
Sounds alot like the South African mags that were for sale by Cliff Brown @ Dixie Ammo Dump a short while ago.

Mr pogo
February 04, 2001, 14:23
Thanks Ted, was remembering something about beak size also determines source? But Austrians are the ones with witness holes AFAIK.

Mr pogo
February 04, 2001, 14:31
South African?! Ill have to check that out.

EMDII
February 04, 2001, 21:30
I have a Belgian w/ holes, but it's parkerized. Monsieur Pogo is correct about Austrian black w/ witness holes. Sound Austrian.

Mea culpa.

Cliff's SA mags have Inch-style floorplates. VELLY INTELESTING! I bought several (remember the 'what is this' I posted?! TeeHee!)

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1*.....Train Like You Fight: Second Place is NOT an Option.

E.M. (Ted) Dannemiller II

Mr pogo
February 04, 2001, 22:02
Hold on dere Ted! I got some Austrians, witness holes and parkerized a medium gray/black. I havent heard of Austrians being painted either tho its possible.
The black ones Ive got cant be SA then, have metric floorplates similar to the Austrians as noted.

NZ L1A1 Collector
February 05, 2001, 17:47
Point to note guys when you are trying to ID magazines............... you can only go on the manufactured differences....... NOT finish!

Magazines are notorious for being re-finished! Look at how it is made to determin where it came from. Some are easy Austrian made mags have ovals with a number on them, some Belguim ones have the NSN number stamped on the side.

BUT

do you call a Izzy mag an Izzy mag just because it has an Izzy marking on it? NO because there are 2 types of mags the Isreali's had.
1. FN made mags for Israeli
2. Israeli made mags

They both look similar but there are a number of manufacturing differences + the markings are different.

You have to look at all these points then make a judgement. Just because a mag is quoted as being South African..... dosen't mean it is South African. Sure the importer may of brought it from there, but it might in fact be an original FN made mag! not SA, what a bonus for the buyer!

The same concept also goes for Stg58 mags some are FN Made while others are Austrian made copies- easily IDed due to there markings. I wish they all were that easily IDed.

Just a little insight into the headaches of IDing parts and equipment correctly.

I'll stop ranting now http://www.fnfal.com/forums/smile.gif

------------------
Kevin Adams
Rifle, 7.62 mm, L1A1 Collector & Researcher.
NEW ZEALAND

Mr pogo
February 06, 2001, 15:21
Then what are my black mags Kevin? While we're on mags where are the markings on the Stgs? I have some with the witness holes/dark gray parkerizing but no markings. No markings=? Also black ones have no markings I can find. Enquiring minds want to know.

Farmer from Hell
February 06, 2001, 18:14
Mr Pogo I think Kevin has a point about the difference between where they came from and who made them. I have an Izzy that is identical to an SA mag with the only differance being the Hebrew markings. Both have the large hole on the floor plate for romoveing them. I also have some mags that are like new black that have the small hole in the floor plate. The Styer ones are way smaller. Most of my Styer mags I have have the oval with the number inside on the front faceing thin edge of the mag. Some are marked very lightly and you really have to look for them and some are not. I guess they just werent positioned in the machine to get stamped right.

FfH

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What part of Shall not be Infringed dont you understand pinhead?

NZ L1A1 Collector
February 06, 2001, 20:20
Plain black mags are MOST LIKELY to be original FN made mags.

Do they have the following characteristics?

BACK
1. Note the 'shallow' type impression where the tip of the round is used to lever the bottom plate off.
2. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is the standard FN distance of 75 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
3. Horizontal indentation in the top reinforcing rib (above mag catch position).
4. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is the standard FN long pointed type.

TOP
1. Follower has two sets of holes 1 at the front to retain the spring and 2 at the rear to retain the loop of the spring.
The sloped ramp starts 6 mm from the rear of the follower.

BOTTOM
1. Has the standard FN Mag 'lips' (wide at the front then tapering to the rear).
2. Bottom Plate; has 1 large hole (used to lever the plate off using the tip of round) and the rear of the plate protrudes beyond the back of the case.

How do they stack up against these features?

------------------
Kevin Adams
Rifle, 7.62 mm, L1A1 Collector & Researcher.
NEW ZEALAND

[This message has been edited by NZ L1A1 Collector (edited February 06, 2001).]

Mr pogo
February 07, 2001, 05:11
Plain black mags are MOST LIKELY to be original FN made mags.

Do they have the following characteristics?

BACK
1. Note the 'shallow' type impression where the tip of the round is used to lever the bottom plate off. Not sure, only have austrian mags to compare to. Not as shallow as austrian
2. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is the standard FN distance of 75 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib). Strange thing here, of the 10 black mags, 5 are exactly 75mm, the other 5 at around 73-74mm. Distance corresponds with the bluing of the followers, the 75mm have a bronze tint to the bluing, the 73-74mm ones a dark blue bluing. What this means I don know
3. Horizontal indentation in the top reinforcing rib (above mag catch position). All have this
4. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is the standard FN long pointed type. Compared to the austrians yes they are all taller and pointier. However shape are slightly diff between the bronze and blue followers as noted above

TOP
1. Follower has two sets of holes 1 at the front to retain the spring and 2 at the rear to retain the loop of the spring.
The sloped ramp starts 6 mm from the rear of the follower. Yes to all, follower spring holes noticeably larger than austrian

BOTTOM
1. Has the standard FN Mag 'lips' (wide at the front then tapering to the rear). Yes
2. Bottom Plate; has 1 large hole (used to lever the plate off using the tip of round) and the rear of the plate protrudes beyond the back of the case. Has 1 large hole, the tab for this hole does extend past the rear of the mag body

Thanks mucho for the help Kevin!

Master Blaster
February 08, 2001, 19:48
Kevin,
The Specs that you listed describes the mags that I bought from cliff to the last detail. Thank you for the information!
Jim

FG
February 08, 2001, 23:10
I recently purchased 6 new metric mags from a individual. They are new with a black finish, the followers don't match the Israel or Steyer mags. The only mark is a number stamped on the magazine floor plate; 1005-13-100-0225. Can anyone tell me the origin of these mags?

NZ L1A1 Collector
February 09, 2001, 05:02
the magazine is a FN made one hence the number "13" in the NSN number you have stated

it should also conform to the following description:

BACK:
1. Note the 'shallow' type impression where the tip of the round is used to lever the bottom plate off.
2. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is the standard FN distance of 75 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
3. Horizontal indentation in the top reinforcing rib (above mag catch position).
4. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is the standard FN long pointed type.

TOP:
1. Follower has two sets of holes 1 at the front to retain the spring and 2 at the rear to retain the loop of the spring.
The sloped ramp starts 6 mm from the rear of the follower.

BOTTOM:
1. Has the standard FN Mag 'lips' (wide at the front then tapering to the rear).
2. Bottom Plate; has 1 large hole (used to lever the plate off using the tip of round) and the rear of the plate protrudes beyond the back of the case.

------------------
Kevin Adams
Rifle, 7.62 mm, L1A1 Collector & Researcher.
NEW ZEALAND

FG
February 09, 2001, 11:16
Kevin,
Thank you for the reply, there are several differences in these magazines (now that I know what I'm looking for)you described.

1) There is no horizontal indentation in the upper rienfocing rib above the mag catch.

2) There is only 1 hole in the follower at the front.

3) The sloped ramp starts at the back of the follower, not 6mm in.

4) The bottom magazine lips are not tapered but the same width front to back (app. .125" wide)

5) The bottom plate does not protrude beyond the back of the case.

Kevin, thanks for the help.

FG

W.E.G.
September 09, 2001, 18:08
moved to FAQ

George
September 27, 2001, 21:25
Can metric mags be used in inch FAL?
Do they function?

MRickenback
September 27, 2001, 21:55
I have heard it and see it posted here that they do. I haven't tried it myself but the word is that they wobble a little but work just fine.

-MDR

gunplumber
September 27, 2001, 22:07
They will fit, but since there is no front support for the magazine, they do not lock in place well. any pressure on the front of the mag or even the weight of the ammo can cause the nose of the mag to droop, thus resulting in a jam where the nose of the bullet strikes the flat face of the chamber instead of the chamfer

Overfiend
January 25, 2002, 06:12
Newbie here. Having some feed problems with my new century L1A1 and researching some probable causes. How do I know an inch mag from a metric? thanx.

George
January 25, 2002, 06:26
Inch mags have a oblong rectangular tab in the front of the mag to latch the mag in place. Looks very robust. Also have a button near the center of the base plate to push in to remove the base of the mag for mag disassembly.
Metric mags have a very small, round/triangular little bent out tab in the front of the mag and no button in the baseplate of the mag.
Best that I can explain it at this hour....

EMDII
January 25, 2002, 07:46
Metric:
- As described: a small dimple is the small 'lug' on the front of the magazine which engages a corresponding recess in the front of the magazine well.
- The floorplate is nearly always female: it is slightly narrower than the body, and fits under inward-facing retainers

Inch:
- Has a large solid lug soldered to the front of the body. This lug is nearly full width, has a visible step, and is quite obviously a separate, attached piece.
- The floorplate is nearly always male: it fits into outward-facing flanges on the body.

Metric magazines will fit loosely into an Inch-cut magazine well. They may NOT feed reliably. Inch magazines will ONLY fit into Inch magazine wells: they will NOT fit into a Metric well unless you apply some serious force. It will damage the magazine.

Do a search in the FAQ Forum on 'magazine'. Of the 39+ answers, several deal with various magazine ID questions.

[ January 25, 2002: Message edited by: EMDII ]

ironman0311
January 26, 2002, 04:15
Courtesy of Kevin!


Magazine Details

Australian made L2A1 20 round magazine (File Name: AU_L2A1_20rnd_mag_xxxxx.jpg)

GENERAL:
1. Australian L2A1 magazines have no markings.
2. Finish: phosphated over coated with a satin black paint.
a.: Follower has a phosphated over coated with a satin black paint finish.
3. The only way to positively ID an Australian magazine case from a Canadian magazine case is by closely scrutinising the manufacturing details of the casing. The indentations on the reinforcing rib are generally an 'even' width (see Canadian Magazines for their case details).

BACK:
1. Spot welding in 2 positions Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is at 30 mm & 86.5 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
2. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is styled on the Canadian design, long triangular shape.

TOP:
1. Follower is of the L1A1 style, has one hole at the front to retain the spring and another a third of the way along the side of the ramp.

BOTTOM:
1. Has the standard type L1A1 bottom plate.

Canadian C1 magazines (File Name: C1_mag_ xxxxx.jpg)

GENERAL:
1. Canadian C1 magazines have no markings.
2. Finish: phosphated over coated with a satin black paint.
a.: Follower has a bright finish.
3. The only way to positively ID an Canadian magazine case from a Australian magazine case is by closely scrutinising the manufacturing details of the casing. The indentations on the reinforcing rib have a 'pear' shape (see Australian Magazines for their case details).
4. 'Witness holes' have been added later and are not original.

BACK:
1. Note the impression where the tip of the round is used to lever the bottom plate off.
2. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is at 29 mm & 86 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
3. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is a long triangular shape.

TOP:
1. Follower is of the Australian L1A1 style, has one hole at the front to retain the spring and another a third of the way along the side of the ramp.

BOTTOM:
1. Has a unique 3 ribbed plate and dimple that is used to lever the plate off using the tip of a round, like done with the normal Metric FAL magazine.

Canadian C1A1 magazines (File Name: C1A1_mag_ xxxxx.jpg)

GENERAL:
1. Canadian C1A1 magazines have no markings.
2. Finish: phosphated over coated with a satin black paint.
a.: Follower has a bright finish.
3. The only way to positively ID an Canadian magazine case from a Australian magazine case is by closely scrutinising the manufacturing details of the casing. The indentations on the reinforcing rib have a 'pear' shape (see Australian Magazines for their case details).
4. 'Witness holes' have been added later and are not original.

BACK:
1. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is at 29 mm & 86 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
2. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is a long triangular shape.

TOP:
1. Follower is of the Australian L1A1 style, has one hole at the front to retain the spring and another a third of the way along the side of the ramp.

BOTTOM:
1. Has the standard type L1A1 bottom plate.


British L4A1 magazines (File Name: UK_L4A1_mag_ xxxxx.jpg)

GENERAL:
1. Canadian C1A1 magazines have no markings.
3. Finish: phosphated over coated with a satin black paint.
a.: Follower has a bright finish.
3. The only way to positively ID an Canadian magazine case from a Australian magazine case is by closely scrutinising the manufacturing details of the casing. The indentations on the reinforcing rib have a 'pear' shape (see Australian Magazines for their case details).
4. 'Witness holes' have been added later and are not original.

BACK:
1. Horizontal indentation in the reinforcing rib is at 29 mm & 86 mm (from the bottom of the casing along the reinforcing rib).
2. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is a long triangular shape.

TOP:
1. Follower is of the Australian L1A1 style, has one hole at the front to retain the spring and another a third of the way along the side of the ramp.

BOTTOM:
1. Has the standard type L1A1 bottom plate.


Australian L4A1 magazines (File Name: AU_L4A1_mag_ xxxxx.jpg)

GENERAL:
1. Australian L4A1 magazines have the following markings
MAGAZINE 7.62M. M. L4A1.
9600089. MA 73

2. Finish: phosphated over coated with a satin black paint.
a.: Follower has a bright finish.
3. These magazines where made under contract for the UK.

BACK:
1. Horizontal seam is spot welded and brazed, then filed flat.
2. Follower tab (the tab that engages the Bolt Hold Open Device) is the UK design, short 6.0 mm long.

ironman0311
January 26, 2002, 04:21
More from Kevin:

(Edited for privacy)

My question dealt with telling UK Inch Mags from Aussie's, and others.

>>>

Firstly I'll deal with the easy identifiable INCH mags.

BRITISH:

These magazines are readily ID by the extensive use of stampings on the follower, case and bottom plate. The markings that will be found are:

Case: Part No. 960 - 0017
Follower: Part No. 9603059 or similar
Bottom Plate: Part No. 960 2044

along with these markings it will also have Markers and date markings too.

Next is Indian 1A magazines
These look the same as British, Canadian & Australian INCH mags but are Identifiable by the markings on the follower, case and bottom plate.

Case: Part No. ICR.84A
Follower: Part No. ICR-1506
Bottom Plate: Part No. ICR-1509

These magazines are also 1/4 inch longer then other countries magazines.

Canadian Magazines are very similar to Australian ones. Both are devoid of markings, but it seems that the followers of Canadian magazines are 'bright' steel... possible stainless? (these are the same followers that are found in the L2 & C2 30 round mags). All mags have a phosphated finish only.


Australian magazine are like I said about devoid of markings.

Finish is a very professional Stoving Black over Phosphate. If the mag is new ONLY the exterior surface of the case is painted black. Workshop refinished mags can be just phosphated, or poorly painted black.

Follower, retainer and bottom plate are all phosphated. The follower is also painted black.

Spring is left 'Bright'.

I've just managed to find something I was working on last year about ID'ing Inch Magazines, it may be of some more detailed help. It's in WORD97 format.

(In above Post)

Hope this all helps

[ January 26, 2002: Message edited by: ironman0311 ]