PDA

View Full Version : Should I download M14 magazines?


314159
June 25, 2009, 08:40
Many experts recommend downloading the issue M16 magazines 2 rounds for various reasons and I recently read where Larry Vickers recommended downloading FAL mags 2 rounds. What about the M14? The mag springs I've used seem very stout, seating a full mag with the rocking motion seems straightforward and I find it hard to believe mag lip spreading would be a problem with these overbuilt boxes. So... any qualified opinions out there on the downloading of the M14 magazines?

molonlabe texan
June 25, 2009, 09:27
no.

gunplumber
June 25, 2009, 10:59
No - no "experts" recommend this. At least no experts on spring design and metallurgy. Many people do repeat the same same stories they heard from their fathers and grandfathers, without considering that spring technology has improved in the last 100 years. So I guess if you define an expert as one who has stopped learning, yeah, I guess some "experts" may say this. But nobody who has bothered to do 10 minutes of research.

Beckman
June 25, 2009, 12:05
Originally posted by 314159
Many experts recommend downloading the issue M16 magazines 2 rounds for various reasons...
[...]You've touched on some of the issues, but these are the most common of the "various reasons" for downloading the M16 mags that I've heard:

- Easier to insert magazine into rifle when the bolt is closed. This is less of an issue in mags which pivot on the front, such as AK, FAL and M14 mags. Pivoting mags use leverage and are easier to insert when full.

- Less chance of spreading or deforming the feed lips, or mag body, after prolonged storage. I've heard that this is an issue on M16 aluminum mags, and Magpul's PMAG has a special device to relieve pressure on the feed lips during prolonged storage. I don't know whether this is an issue with M14 mags. The feed lips on M14 mags are not supported at the rear, unlike those of many other rifle's mags. Although the FAL's feed lips are supported at the rear, the M14's feed lips appear to be harder, stronger, and less prone to deformation. However, compare the M14 mag feed lips with those of an AK or G3 mag. The M14 mag's lips appear weaker, but I don't know whether this leads to deformation during prolonged, loaded storage.

- Less chance of a malfunction. In some mags, the new spring is initially very stiff and a fully loaded mag will provide excessive resistance when feeding the top round. This may sometimes lead to malfunctions. There may be other reasons why a fully loaded mag may malfunction; some reasons may be due to poor mag design. This is easy to test in any given mag/rifle.

- Spring fatique. As Gunplumber has pointed out, metalurgists claim that this is not an issue with a properly designed, modern spring.

LVMPDawg
June 25, 2009, 12:45
If you're not having problems loading a full mag with the bolt closed, then there's no reason to download.

gunplumber
June 25, 2009, 13:19
and if you are, your mag spring or something else is defective.

EricCartmanR1
June 25, 2009, 14:19
I was like every other fool out there that downloaded by 1 or 2 rounds for no reason other than this is what we were taught. But now I go full 20 or full 30.

gunplumber
June 25, 2009, 14:29
One thing to consider is stainless steel springs - as in DONT USE THEM. Stainless has a 30% less spring for a given length, so a stainless spring needs to be longer than a chrome silicone or carbon steel. In many applications, this doesn't matter, but in magazines, designers want to cram as many rounds into as small a space as possible. This means there is very little space between full compression and having all the coils touching or "going solid." Add a loop or increase wire diameter to compensate for the weaker stainless and you end up with less capacity in same size mag.

shlomo
June 25, 2009, 17:44
I say go for it.

Hell, I'd download the whole rifle if I knew how.

314159
June 25, 2009, 18:28
Ok. I'm convinced. Not an issue.

DYNOMIKE
June 25, 2009, 18:43
I agree with the EXPERTS and now download ALL my mags to ONE ROUND each just to be sure my springs are Okay.. :devil: :p :tongue:

LVMPDawg
June 26, 2009, 02:27
Originally posted by DYNOMIKE
I agree with the EXPERTS and now download ALL my mags to ONE ROUND each just to be sure my springs are Okay.. :devil: :p :tongue:

If you've loaded a round, you've caused the spring to 'set' and it's rooned! I will dispose of all your magazines for you henceforth.

panzer
June 26, 2009, 21:45
Originally posted by shlomo
I say go for it.

Hell, I'd download the whole rifle if I knew how.

Been waiting on this reply.... and no one knows.

Para Driver
June 26, 2009, 22:57
Originally posted by EricCartmanR1
I was like every other fool out there that downloaded by 1 or 2 rounds for no reason other than this is what we were taught. But now I go full 20 or full 30.

I'm one of those fools, that had a full 30 round magazine jam the bolt in the middle of a match. That's the benefit of shooting in some of the 3 gun matches, you learn under stress what doesn't work. So from EXPERIENCE, I say yes, download 2 rounds less than full capacity.

LVMPDawg
June 27, 2009, 01:48
Para, the original post was referring to 308 mags such as the FAL and M14's.

I do agree with the M16 mag issue, and teach 28rds to this day, if the students are using anything but PMags. It never fails, one or two will stuff those issue 30rd mags full and all the immediate action in the world can't get them to work in most rifles.

gunplumber
June 27, 2009, 07:44
wow - I've been shooting an M16 or AR-15 for over 20 years, never downloaded a magazine, and never had a malfunction caused by loading my magazines to their designed capacity.

I have had malfunctions from loading 21 rounds in a 20 rd magazine. So when I finish loading a mag, I always check to make sure the correct side is high (L on a FAL) and my7 thumb can get some movement out of the top round.

If your magazine does not reliably feed the first round when loaded to its designed capacity, either it or your rifle has a defect.

Seems more practical to find out and repair whats defective, rather than to hide the symptom by downloading the mag.

By the way, I bought a bunch of these earlier and have more than I need. I am selling off the extras. They are $15, 6.50 ship.

http://www.arizonaresponsesystems.com/gb/gbband01.jpg

http://www.arizonaresponsesystems.com/gb/gbband02.jpg

http://www.arizonaresponsesystems.com/gb/gbband03.jpg

MacRob
June 27, 2009, 11:24
Back when I was in USAF in the Phillippines, in '69 & '70, we were advised to load our 20 round M-16 mags with no more than 17 rounds or we could expect problems with rounds jamming. This was after the time that the bolt assist plunger had been added to the rifles. I was in charge of the armory for my unit - the First Mobile Communications Group - for a couple of months and we were told to remind all our guys who were going to Viet Nam on TDY of this potential problem. I never experienced it myself and never talked to anyone who did either. I have searched every bit of literature I have on the M-16/AR-15 looking for some official publication or reference to this as being a problem, in vain. But, I remember it clearly and I also remember that one of the questions asked of suspected VC infiltrators caught in ARVN uniform was how many rounds to load into an M-16 mag. Supposedly they did not know this being familiar with only with Soviet Bloc weapons. Do any of the rest of you recall this?