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Old 03-19-2017, 04:51 PM
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Does leaving magazines loaded hurt the springs?



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It was suggested to me that leaving a 10 round rotary magazine loaded for extended periods of time will cause the tension spring to take a set. Is this true? Thanks.
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Old 03-19-2017, 04:59 PM
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If you are talking about a Ruger magazine I'd say there isn't anything wrong. Of course, it might depend upon just how long you are talking about. I've seen Colt 1911-A1 magazines that had been produced and loaded during WW-2 that functioned perfectly when unpacked in 1970 in Vietnam. Now there are lots of cheap magazines out there that I wouldn't trust to work after having been left loaded for just a short time. Quality does count.
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Old 03-19-2017, 05:01 PM
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There are two sides: some say yes . and some say no. I'm leaning towards no. With all the things I've read. I have also left a few 1911 mags loaded for a year or more and took them out to the range and fired the gun with no FTFs.

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Old 03-19-2017, 05:06 PM
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I leave all my mags loaded, some of them for long periods of time, and I haven't had any problems. But all my mags, with the exception of some AR ones, are factory.
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Old 03-19-2017, 05:22 PM
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Vehicle springs stay loaded for years without any problems. So you should be good to go.

But why leave a mag loaded for such a long period? If you needed a loaded mag, perhaps rotate a different one in every now and then if you are worried.
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Old 03-19-2017, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeepergeo View Post
Vehicle springs stay loaded for years without any problems. So you should be good to go.

But why leave a mag loaded for such a long period? If you needed a loaded mag, perhaps rotate a different one in every now and then if you are worried.
Rotating mags in and out of service , is I think a good idea also.

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Old 03-19-2017, 07:38 PM
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Rotating mags is an option. Thanks. This is for a Ruger 10/22, want to keep a mag loaded but not in the gun itself, just on "standby." Easy enough to pop in if needed quickly.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:24 PM
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Another option is to just load your 10 round mag with 8 rounds to relieve some of the pressure, unless there is a driving reason to have the on deck magazine loaded with 10. Leaving out 1 or 2 rounds in mags left loaded for months is an old trick that works well.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Outrider View Post
Another option is to just load your 10 round mag with 8 rounds to relieve some of the pressure, unless there is a driving reason to have the on deck magazine loaded with 10. Leaving out 1 or 2 rounds in mags left loaded for months is an old trick that works well.
Works well at what? The springs will not get weak. Springs maintain their original shape until they fail by breaking or are deformed by pushing them beyond the elastic limits of the spring. If springs got weak Hooke's Law would not hold true.

As pointed out above, when was the last time you changed the springs under your car?
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Old 03-20-2017, 05:07 PM
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Works well at what? The springs will not get weak. Springs maintain their original shape until they fail by breaking or are deformed by pushing them beyond the elastic limits of the spring. If springs got weak Hooke's Law would not hold true.

As pointed out above, when was the last time you changed the springs under your car?
Not so - these aren't car springs, and for your information, car springs do sag and require replacement, fortunately not real often, for the reason you cited, being pushed beyond their elastic limit. It is a common repair/restoration item on older cars, common enough that there are shops out there that specialize in automotive spring replacement.

With firearms, long term spring problems are most common (in my experience) in pistol mags, probably due to the desire to keep the grip as compact as possible, though not real common (again in my experience). I have no idea whether factory 10/22 mags are subject to this problem when left fully loaded for months at a time or not, I simply offered a solution that works and is free if one is worried about a potential problem that, unfortunately, does crop up once in awhile, whether you believe it is possible or not. I have a carry pistol, one of whose mags Is prone to this problem; the cure, fully load the mag, then jack one round into the chamber, taking enough strain off the spring. Bottom line, if it has never happened to you, I am happy for you. For those of us who have encountered the problem, there are preventive measures that do work, one of which I detailed in my post above.

Mike

Last edited by Outrider; 03-20-2017 at 05:11 PM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Outrider View Post
Not so - these aren't car springs, and for your information, car springs do sag and require replacement, fortunately not real often, for the reason you cited, being pushed beyond their elastic limit. It is a common repair/restoration item on older cars, common enough that there are shops out there that specialize in automotive spring replacement.

With firearms, long term spring problems are most common (in my experience) in pistol mags, probably due to the desire to keep the grip as compact as possible, though not real common (again in my experience). I have no idea whether factory 10/22 mags are subject to this problem when left fully loaded for months at a time or not, I simply offered a solution that works and is free if one is worried about a potential problem that, unfortunately, does crop up once in awhile, whether you believe it is possible or not. I have a carry pistol, one of whose mags Is prone to this problem; the cure, fully load the mag, then jack one round into the chamber, taking enough strain off the spring. Bottom line, if it has never happened to you, I am happy for you. For those of us who have encountered the problem, there are preventive measures that do work, one of which I detailed in my post above.

Mike
A spring is a spring is a spring, no matter if it is used in a firearm or a car. The reason car springs sag (deform) is because the car gets overloaded and the springs get pushed beyond the elastic limits. It's easy to overload a car spring. How do you overload a mag spring? When fully loaded, the spring will see the same exact load the first time the mag is loaded as it will see on the day it fails. So what forces act on the spring to make it weaken?

If springs get weak, how does Hooke's Law hold true? It is a Law of Physics that an elastic solid will deflect under a identical force the same amount every time, and return to it's original form, every time, unless pushed beyond the elastic limits, until the spring fails through breaking.
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:23 PM
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Magazines are fairly inexpensive so have two or three and rotate them occasionally or just keep a revolver under your bed. End of problem.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:28 PM
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Cycling a spring over and over can eventually cause deformationwhich may weaken a spring; but compressing a spring within the range it's designed for and leaving it shouldn't be an issue. I have a Colt brand mag that was kept fully loaded with defensive rounds for right around 24 years, and I recently emptied it, ran several mags full of practice ammo through it and it functioned perfectly. I cleaned it afterwards, loaded it back up, and put it back in the safe.

Now that I think about it though, I should probably just shoot off those old Hydra-Shoks, and reload it with HSTs, since defensive ammo has come a long way in the last three decades...
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:41 PM
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Metal deforms (bends, stretches and compresses) in one of two ways: elastic and plastic. Within elastic deformation, most metals can withstand tens of thousands of cycles before work hardening affects it. As long as you stay within that elastic zone, you'll be fine. Obviously, 10 rounds in a 10 round magazine (with a built in limiter), won't put the spring into the far worse plastic deformation zone. As long as there's no corrosion (crappy ammo?) you shouldn't have a problem. Unfortunately, Murphy often works overtime to screw things up. No one can predict Murphy's appearance.
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Old 03-20-2017, 11:06 PM
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No one can predict Murphy's appearance.
Ever hear of Charles's Law? It says that Murphy was an optimist!
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