Friday, January 28, 2011

For my younger readers...

I bought my first gun in nineteen-hundred-and-eighty-six, so I understand that if you only came into the shooting hobby in the last six years, the following might sound a little weird...

I was a casual gun owner and occasional shooter up until the time I got my first job at a gun store some seven years later, about the time the Brady Bill became law. When the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (better known as the "Assault Weapons Ban") passed, I picked up a couple of extra magazines for my Glock 23 and SIG P-228, the only firearms I owned that would be affected. Conversely, I remember ordering a whole case of Ram-Line 10/22 mags for a customer who had a Ruger with an auto-sear in it. I thought he was being paranoid.

Boy, was I un-psychic...

Since then, my interests and preferences have shifted. These days my primary handgun doesn't hold over ten rounds, and the only weapons I own that do are various AR-platform carbines. But every time I go to a gun show, I buy at least one 1911 or AR mag. Any time I'm in a gun store and see that they have cheap ex-GI M16 magazines in their "Used Stuff" box, I pick one up. I keep replacement magazine springs and followers in my spare parts box. When I made my order from Brownells earlier in the week, I made a point of having them toss a carbine mag and a pistol mag in the box. Sure, maybe I seem as kooky as your great-grandparents who lived through the Great Depression and hoarded rubber bands and string until the day they died, but what's a little cheap insurance?

Magazines in self-loading firearms are wear items.
Q: How many mags should you have?
A: More.

31 comments:

Jay G said...

I do the very same thing, Tam. Every time I place an order with MidwayUSA I have them toss in a 10 round magazine for the Ruger 10/22.

Sure, having a crap load of 10 round magazines may seem silly now, but when they arbitrarily decide that *10* rounds is "too many" and all we can get are 8 rounders/5 rounders/3 rounders, it'll be good to have...

Besides, I can load magazines in the warmth of my living room just as easily as I can freezing my patookie off at the range...

Mad Saint Jack said...

My plan was to have a G26, G17L, and a Sub-2000, and a lifetimes supply of magazines between them.

D.W. Drang said...

MSJ: Not overly fond of the Glock myself, but I have a Sub2K that accepts Glock mags, so that was my plan. But... I understand that the Springfield XD can accept Beretta mags w/a slight mod to the mag, so I am thinking of swapping out the Sub2K for one that will accept Beretta mags, so I can use the full-cap '92 mags.
(Hopefully, someone will chime in here to tell me if my understanding is wrong...)
Have enough 1911 mags for, well, one firefight. Need more. Ditto AR15 mags.

mdrewrankin said...

I'm doing a giveaway of a total of five G3 20-round mags for some of my Facebook friends in Knoxville who don't have any full-cap mags for any firearm, just to make the point.

Mag Giveaway

Feel free to pass on the link if you know of any folks in K-Town who might qualify.

Anonymous said...

I remember scrounging for every RamLine & American Eagle mag I could find in the Doraville, Chambodia and Lawrenceville shops back then.

I still buy a mag or three every time I drop into Larry's now.

Can't ever have to many...

Gmac

RobertM said...

I've got six 30 round PMAGs even though I sold my AR about six months ago. I plan on picking up another AR so I kept them. Now I think I'll go buy a couple more...

Montie said...

During the AWB, I found a mother lode at a garage sale not far from my house. Two sealed cased of 30 round M-16 military contract magazines and a sealed case of 30 round "grease gun" magazines at a very reasonable price. I sold one of the cases of M-16 mags to a local gun shop that I frequent and made back all the money the 3 cases cost me (plus a little extra) and kept the others. I still have some unopened bagged AR mags.

I sold about half the case of subgun mags this summer for a few hundred bucks and still have a number of them in the paper wrappings.

I am now regretting selling any of them.

The Duck said...

I remeber in 92 calling and telling a lot of guys I shot with to stock up, and a number of them said it wouldn't happen, and when $7 mags were $40 they were crying the blues.

I like to have at least 10-12 mags per gun, so if I have say 6 1911's in 45, I need 60 to 72 mags

And adding one or 2 to an order is not a lot from time to time

RobertSlaughter said...

I love the sentiment! I know I should have more, but since firearm-$$ is so tight, I haven't done this.

while (1) {
mag[$gun] += 1;
}

Anonymous said...

You can never have enough mags for your mag fed weapons. Get as many as you can afford and keep rebuild kits as well. I totally agree Tam, MORE!!!

Walt

Mark Alger said...

If a newbie might find it odd, how about somebody who remembers when you could order guns through the mail and Tom's First Ward Cigar store in Hamilton, Ohio, kept rifles, pistols, shotguns (and ammo) behind the glass case next to the magazines. Er... periodicals.

This new world of yours is positively bizarre.

M

Tango Juliet said...

Tripp Research!! Tripp Research!!

Justin said...

Don't forget the new Surefire magazines...

1911Man said...

Thanks for the reminder / motivation. I just ordered up 3 more tasty new Wilson Combat mags.

DirtCrashr said...

Crap, I just have a mess of Sig magazines, some 1911 mags, and a mess of 10-round AR magazines...

mariner said...

Three years or so ago, a survey at arf.com asked how many magazines were enough.

I thought I was in good shape with ~12 and was astonished at the number of people with >100.

I have since bought "a few" more.

Firehand said...

I've been doing that when could afford for the .45; now that I think about it a extra spare or two for the Pocket Hammerless would be a good idea

Steve Skubinna said...

Yes, I tend to grab one or two when I come across them at gun shows or the like. Not so much online, though, for some reason.

Thing is, it doesn't really follow that if you have more than one example of a firearm that you need additional magazines. Logically. I mean, you're only going to shoot one at a time, so having enough mags for one AR should be enough for two or three or five or ten.

I suppose. Nobody bother telling me that, because it's bullshit.

And lately I've been seriously thinking about stashing loaded mags around the house. Not the firearms, mind you - just mags.

Nolo said...

Absolutely agree. But having said that, the rate at which you should buy is dependent on how much you shoot it and wear out the mag.

Folks who think two mags will be enough might be right, but their idea of practice is probably to run half a mag through their weapon a year.

T.Stahl said...

14 mags for my Glock
12 mags for my SL8
29 stripper clips for my No4Mk1
16 clips for my K31
10 mags for the x-esse
only three mags for the No4Mk4

And I still want more mags for my Glock and especially at least five more M14 mags for the No4Mk4.

Chris said...

More than I "need", less than I want.

George in AZ said...

First, get as many mags as you need, then get more, BUT...

Remember, this battle isn't lost, YET. Call, write, text, Email the
legislators and tell them in no uncertain terms, any further restrictions on your Civil Rights is unnacceptable.

Then, buy some more mags.

Before the Clinton AWB, I bought some AK mags for $5.95. Once the bill was made public, the price went to $33.95. EACH. And people think the oil cos. gouge.

Bubblehead Les. said...

I'd add stripper clips for the older bolt guns, Garand Clips and speed loaders for the revolvers. Hell, never hurts to have a spare ramrod for the ol' Smokepole!. They'll all be cheaper today than they will down the road a ways.

Anonymous said...

My line of thinking say's no more than I can carry. If you have to "spray-N-pray" you are toast !
Farm tools and seeds etc. are probably a better investment.
Just make sure you have plenty of bullets to refill whatever mags ya got. Have to do sumthin while waiting for the barrel ta cool down...

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm pretty sure the S gonna hit the Fan fore too much longer but I'll have to use what I have to get whatever I need off the bodies of the illegitimate government enforcers I intend to kill during the process.

But I don't think I'm paranoid just realistic.

Hope they get in some of those new SCAR17S rifles, they're really nice and I'd really, really like to have a few.

James family outpost, Iowa. said...

Shucks, sold my AR 2 years ago. Now my only center-semi is a Mini-14 and Ruger factory mags are so, so dear. Guess I should pony up, I only have 4. My only semi pistols are the cat collection: Minx, bobcat, tomcat & cheetah. Don't want any more of those mags. Er, do revolver speed loaders count?

T.Stahl said...

Today IT almost happened.

Today I almost bought a magazine for a gun I don't even have. That G-Mag* just looked sooo nice and the price was sooo good, just 20EU for a 30rd mag compared to the +40EU a 10rd mag for my SL8 costs!

*) German version of P-Mag

Discobobby said...

T.Stahl: Thank you for keeping the spirit of our fathers alive in Deutschland!

John Richardson said...

Heck, I have about 100 G-3 mags for a HK/PTR-91 and I don't even own one. But at 99 cents a piece, how could I not buy a bunch?

Now if I could only find cheap FN-FAL metric mags...

Tremaine said...

I live in a tiny apartment so my kit is pretty compact at 14 AK mags and 6 mags for my Springfield XD.

I'll try to get more mags when I get more space. Hopefully they won't be banned by then.

Geodkyt said...

Steve Skubinna said...
Yes, I tend to grab one or two when I come across them at gun shows or the like. Not so much online, though, for some reason.

Thing is, it doesn't really follow that if you have more than one example of a firearm that you need additional magazines. Logically. I mean, you're only going to shoot one at a time, so having enough mags for one AR should be enough for two or three or five or ten.


What? You don't have friends, neighbors, or relatives? How the heck are you gonna be able to loan out a spare for the guy who got caught out without one on Der Tag? {chuckle}

I can imagine several ways in which my place could be effectively cut off from the outside world fairly easily in the midst of a disaster (or, given the proximity of DC if Mohammad Oppenheimer comes out to play, WMD attack). I figure that would mean my family, any guests, and myself might have to hang on for at least 72 hours before we could either walk out, or try and get the attention of a relief chopper.

In the mean time, anything that cuts us off from the world is likely to cut us off from law enforcement -- so it would behoove me to be ready to offer to arm any qualified guest, because unarmed or dead guests don't help keep my daughter safe.

I'm not quite there yet, but my idea of "enough" is, at a minimum:

1. One basic load in magazines for each gun with some way to carry it. ALL handguns have a spare holster & mag/speedloader carrier, even if its one of the crappy nylon shoulder rigs in The Box. For the long guns, I am fond of one of the 6-9 magazine - or equivalent for shotguns or clip fed bolties - "bandoliers" (with the following minimums attached to the Boom Bag -- cleaning kit, CAT TK, & field dressing; at least one set of each model will have a BFK, flashlight, waterproofed dummy manual and tools, spare batteries, etc.) -- not a Bug Out Bag, but a BOB for that particular long gun).

Honestly, if you're (assuming you are holed up at my place when the zombies come) planning on doing the whole Katrina Neighborhood Watch thing, add a slung bag opposite the ammo bag (a la RevWar in Cordura - I've grown fond of the MOLLE sustainment pouch on a USGI GP shoulder strap) with a water bottle, one of the radios (either a Saber or a blister-pack FRS), a day's chow, and a better first aid kit geared towards trauma. (If you really want web gear instead, you can dig through my duffle of spare crap and assemble something you like -- the LBVs already set up aren't set up for fighting, they are set up as the 1st echelon BOB, like an aviator's vest.)

2. An additional 'range set' (at least one basic load's worth) of magazines or clips for each model.

3. A full case of ammo - over and above what is pre-loaded in mags or kept around for practice ammo. On clips, in bandoliers, if possible (boxes of shotgun shells fit nicely in MG ammo bandoliers, likewise pistol ammo) Each bandolier of clips should have a clip adaptor mounted on it (except the ones for clip fed rifles, obviously).