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Old 12-12-2016, 06:52 AM

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Mec-Gar Mark III magazine issues

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Just a warning for folks looking for more magazines for their Mark IV; I bought two Mec-Gar Mark III magazines on an eBay auction and took them to the range yesterday. From everything I've read and based on a visual examination, Mark III and Mark IV magazines are supposed to be interchangeable. I now wish I had spent the extra money for factory magazines. First, the magazines were gritty and hard to operate, with a slightly smaller button that made them hard to load. I figured this would improve with some use and perhaps a drop or two of oil. No biggie.

However, although they fit in the Mark IV with a positive click, both magazines had a habit of occasionally dropping out of the pistol as the action cycled, as though the retaining bar was just barely engaging with the punched out shelf on the magazine, and it was being jarred loose by the gun's recoil. This is clearly unacceptable. Each time this happened, I unloaded the magazine, brushed and blew the magazine free of dirt, reloaded and tried again. Regardless of the click I hear when inserting the magazine, after a few shots they would drop free of the magazine again.

My pistol has never dropped a factory magazine unintentionally.

This was my first range session with Ruger (Altamont) oversize target grips fitted, but I do not think the grips were responsible (nor my grip on the pistol), as the factory magazines stay put as they should. For what it's worth, the punched out contour on the magazine that latches onto the retainer in the pistol looks nearly identical to the factory magazines. It is now occurring to me that I should inspect the base plates, too, to verify that the magazine is fitting fully into the pistol.

Anyone have a similar experience with these magazines, or a tip for resolving this? I am tempted to try to enlarge the punched-out catch lip on the magazine slightly, but am not sure how I would go about it. Improvising a tiny pry bar to enlarge the lip seems to be the only way I can think of, and I'm not sure it would work without otherwise causing problems.
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