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  #1  
Old 12-12-2016, 06:52 AM
pak29

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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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Old 12-12-2016, 10:20 AM
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Kind of a strange experience for you. I've used those Mec Gars and never had any problem. I would say that they are very identical to the Ruger factory mags.
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Old 12-15-2016, 06:10 PM
86304

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mine did the same thing.
also had a few FTF's.
just used the Ruger mags today and no trouble.

bob
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  #4  
Old 12-16-2016, 10:23 AM
sillyrabbit72

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I'm having the same issue

no FTE's but the magazine will just randomly drop free during strings of fire. I'm going to contact MecGar about the issue and see what they say. In the meantime if any of you come up with a fix please post it here!
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Old 12-16-2016, 10:40 AM
86304

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please let us know what happens.

thanks, bob
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Old 12-16-2016, 11:58 AM
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BTW, it was not a failure to "EJECT" but a failure to "LOAD".
bullet jammed halfway in and bent the lead. ( is that a "stovepipe"?)
bob
i have Mec Gar magazines for other pistols and they function perfect, so a bit surprised by this malfunction.

Last edited by 86304; 12-16-2016 at 12:01 PM.
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  #7  
Old 12-16-2016, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pak29 View Post
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.
..
Anyone have a similar experience with these magazines, or a tip for resolving this?
You can get more engagement between the mags and the release by backing out the release retaining screw a little. Use some blue Loktite to keep it set where it works the best for you. Don't forget to test with both mags so it's compatible with both brands.
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  #8  
Old 12-16-2016, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pak29 View Post
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.
Here's a "stickie" that you might like to take a look at:

https://www.rimfirecentral.com/forums...d.php?t=507693

If you do as this stickie instructs, there's no need to waste time filing or rounding the feed lips, just make sure they are smooth and don't shave brass off the cartridge case as the bolt pushes a round through the magazine and into the chamber.

Like others have mentioned, I've also had superb luck with the Mec-Gar magazines, but they do work a heluvalot better after being smoothed. Mec-Gar is one of the suppliers who make magazines for Ruger. You also can replace the 0.2500 diameter follower buttons with the Ruger 0.3260 diameter follower buttons. Some of my personal Ruger Mark II magazines have the smaller follower button, and you're right. Operating that button with just your thumb is no fun. You might want to try one of these:



The yellow plastic "power loader" on the top is just a means to waste .22 rimfire ammunition. The low cost manual loaders will save your thumb quite well.
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Old 12-16-2016, 06:40 PM
osbornk

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Originally Posted by SGW Gunsmith View Post
Some of my personal Ruger Mark II magazines have the smaller follower button, and you're right. Operating that button with just your thumb is no fun. You might want to try one of these:



The yellow plastic "power loader" on the top is just a means to waste .22 rimfire ammunition. The low cost manual loaders will save your thumb quite well.
I have both that awful yellow thing and the red manual loader. That awful yellow thing is the best thing I have ever bought for my Ruger. I can load a magazine in seconds and never touch a round. I think I paid $16 a few years ago and if it breaks, I will buy another.
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  #10  
Old 12-19-2016, 06:40 AM
pak29

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Thanks for the input, folks. I will post an update if I find a resolution or improvement. Snow has hit here, so I haven't been able to get back to my outdoor range (bummed, as I've been making improvements to my steel target rack... so much fun to shoot!). I was also experiencing some mis-feeds with the aftermarket magazines, as noted by the other member, above. I will look into the lip shape and also the mag release button screw as suggested above.
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  #11  
Old 01-08-2017, 02:34 AM
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I love my McFadden (Yellow) magazine loader. I shoot Steel Challenge with my Mark III and loading mags between stages is a pain. It also takes too much time manually. I don't like to hold up other shooters because my magazines have to be reloaded.

I bought some Mec Gar magazines so I would have enough to compete. You need at least 5 magazines to shoot each stage at the Steel Challenge. Six is better just incase you have to reload during a string.

My Mec Gar did jam a lot before I tuned them using the Sticky on this forum. After polishing and cleaning they are now working as well as the OEMs.

If you don't like to tinker, buy the factory mags. If you have the time go ahead with the Mec Gar and make sure you tune them. (Polishing the feed lips and the track for the button is all you really need to do.
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  #12  
Old 01-08-2017, 10:31 AM
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The "Power Loader" is probably great for loading magazines to capacity and for steel challenge use where you always want to start with the magazines topped off.

For partially loading, say 5 or 6 rounds, one of the "thumb savers" works well.
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