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Old December 05, 2017, 01:21   #1
EinheitElf
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WTK-anyone ever swap flat spring in L4 30 for a spring from a straight 30?

Hey guys ,i was wondering if anyone has ever tried replacing the flat spring in a 30rd L4 magazine with a wire spring from maybe a straight 30 rd magazine ? I am asking this because due to the nature of how the L4 style mags are usually used,inverted, i have never been 100% sure of functionality,ie spring pressure weaker due to gravity helping with round feeding,so to speak. They seem to have adequate pressure but i think flat springs feel a little different when comparing.

Maybe im overly concerned??

Thoughts and or experiences?

Thanks guys!
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Old December 05, 2017, 05:50   #2
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Informal testing by 3 Para on the trip to the Falklands in 1982 showed L4 magazines did not show any problems using them in L1A1s. They got their hands on as many L4 magazines as they could and put 60 rounds through each magazine with every L1A1 in the unit - no hiccups.

Just make sure you have a good magazine spring (about 15.25 inches long, diagonally). The .303 Bren magazine spring (which can be found new) can be modified to work. Just drill a #18 hole .825 from the end of the terminal leaf.

EDIT: My mistake, it was four magazines per gun:

Quote:
Before the landings there was a lot of discussion about the use of the 30 round LMG magazine with the SLR. This had the obvious advantage of more rounds per reload, but there was some concern that the “W” spring in the magazine would not be strong enough to ensure a reliable feed upwards into the SLR breech, rather than its designed [function] downwards in the magazine housing of the LMG. The quandary was resolved by intense test firing at last light over the rear deck of the MV Norland – the so called “gash shoot” i.e. shooting at bagged rubbish . . . . Every man put at least four LMG mags through his weapon without a single stoppage. It was then left largely to the individual preference as to what to carry on landing. In my case I opted for a normal 20-round mag for starters, but if in a fire fight could use the 30-round mags in which I carried the bulk of my remaining ammo. . . .
- Captain Paul Farrar, Patrols Platoon CO, 2 Para, just before landing in the Falklands in 1982.

Last edited by lysanderxiii; December 05, 2017 at 07:42.
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Old December 05, 2017, 07:42   #3
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just to make sure we are on the same planet here you saying you have flat springs in your genuine L4 mags?
All my British L4 mags have have coil springs that are longer than a standard 20 and all my Indian L4 mags had a stretched spring from a 20 but I swapped them out for the British 30 spring. I only have 20 L4 mags but I have never seen a flat spring in a 7.62 mag
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Old December 05, 2017, 14:04   #4
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All of my L4 mags have the flat w springs in them. I only have 5-7 of them would like a few more but not at the going prices today... I have about 7-10 straight 30's

Thanks for the post regarding the testing Lysander..
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Old December 05, 2017, 22:00   #5
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The L4 magazine was largely based on the BREN magazine and used a flat "W" spring. The reason is this type spring is closer to a constant force spring than the usual wire coil spring.



This type magazine originally came with a flat "W" spring.


You can buy new BREN mag springs here.

Last edited by lysanderxiii; December 05, 2017 at 22:20.
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Old December 06, 2017, 00:45   #6
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Hmmmmm, would replacing the coil spring in a straight 30 with a w spring work? If a w spring is more constant pressure then in theory it should help reliable feeding..in theory.

Thank you again for the link. I could use a source for new Bren mag springs for Kate,my Bren reweld..
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Old December 06, 2017, 11:05   #7
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Can you post a picture of your 7.62 bren mag with a flat spring. I looked in all my mags and they are all wire springs.
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Old December 06, 2017, 17:43   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ActionYobbo View Post
Can you post a picture of your 7.62 bren mag with a flat spring. I looked in all my mags and they are all wire springs.
I had heard rumors that one importer refurbished L4 magazines with regular Australian or Canadian straight-30 springs. But, as produced, this was the standard L4A1 configuration: (The beak of this particular magazine has been modified to fit metric FALs, so it looks smaller.)

MAGAZINE 7.62MM L4A1 9600089 D68

This hole is the one modification required to convert a BREN spring to an L4A1 spring:
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Old December 06, 2017, 18:23   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EinheitElf View Post
Hmmmmm, would replacing the coil spring in a straight 30 with a w spring work? If a w spring is more constant pressure then in theory it should help reliable feeding..in theory.

Thank you again for the link. I could use a source for new Bren mag springs for Kate,my Bren reweld..
Well, like all things engineering, nothing is free...

Flat "W" springs have higher stress concentrations in the folds of the spring, so they are more susceptible to breaking if they get corrosion on them, and don't last as long in general.
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Old December 06, 2017, 20:06   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lysanderxiii View Post
I had heard rumors that one importer refurbished L4 magazines with regular Australian or Canadian straight-30 springs. But, as produced, this was the standard L4A1 configuration:
Thanks for the info. All my straight 30's that I have had were wire and I just assumed that the curved 30's would all be wire because all the curved 30's I have had were wire. I did buy some wire springs for 30rd mags 10 years ago and put them into the Indian 30's and I have never had a problem with the L1A1 feeding from the 30's
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Old December 09, 2017, 13:12   #11
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Edit, Lysander, the pic of your disassembled looks like my L4A1 stamped mags.

Hi Guys, sorry I did not get pics for you, I finally dug mine out late last night and I have 2 types of curved 30's, different stamps, 1 is 'L4A1 with Inch style numbers and date code stamps, the other has ' magazine 7.62m M3A1 1005-005710. One style has the w spring and a modified follower in which the spring IS NOT attached to the follower but is attached at the floorplate(L4A1). The other has a wire spring and is attached at both ends-follower and floorplate.

Interesting note.... APPARENTLY the followers ,at least on my samples, WILL NOT seem to operate correctly, the w spring follower seems to stop traveling short of the top of the mag if I put it in the wire spring mag body. The verticle tabs on the follower are either a smidge wide or the mag body a smidge narrower.

Also, there is a marked difference between the spring lengths w vs wire and it is apparent in my pics.

I have some pics I can email you guys showing the stamps and such and you can post them. I still cant get a pic hosting site or google or whatever to link my pics. What do you guys use.. I am not paying 50 a month to photobucket for my occasional pic linking...

Thanks, interesting little thread.
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Old December 09, 2017, 19:16   #12
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How long in the flat "W" spring? They could just be worn out.

The "MAGAZINE 7.62m M3A1 1005-005710" is for the Indian IA BREN LMG. They do have wire springs, one of the minor differences between Indian and UK 7.62mm BRENs.

The L4A1 Magazine should have what appears to be a regular L1A1 magazine follower.
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