I’ve been around long enough to have tried out all kinds of magazines in various firearms to see if I could get around having to pay full price. Back when the assault weapons ban of 1994 was in full affect, there were way more after market companies out there. I still have 10rd extended magazines for a few of my 1911 models that worked for a few times and then the springs stopped functioning. Cheap springs. Followers are another thing that have to be properly designed to avoid tilting, and this will become more of a problem when you start trying to use defensive ammunition. I tend to see a lot of people try after market magazines for 22LR rifles and reliability often quickly deteriorates.
The one thing people many people don’t understand with firearms is “timing” because that’s where reliability “is” or “isn’t”. When you go to extended capacity magazines, if it’s a cheap company, the magazine springs get weaker and weaker, which translates to slower and slower and when the slide cycles, it is out of its operational window and jams occur. If you are using Sig Pistols or Rifles, some of their magazine costs are higher than Glocks, but they are part of the reason why Sig Sauer has such a strong history of putting out reliable handguns and rifles, stick with Sig Factory Magazines for your Sig firearms and about the only deviation I would suggest would be Sig AR15 style rifles and using Magpul P-Mags and Lancer Magazines.
There seems to be a limited number of 45acp firearms that compete in the arena. I guess it’s because NATO pretty much went with 9mm and nobody but American’s used that 45acp round. The 1911 is always going to be around for competition shooters and 1911 enthusiasts, but once you get away from the 1911, there are only a handful of 45acp guns that even come close to the longevity and recognition. Recently, Sig Sauer has come out with the Sig P227 to try and make that 45acp round more relevant and they based it off of the P226 design. Sig is making Sig Factory Magazines that are 14rds for the Sig P227 so it really does compete about the Glock 21, but it’s still Apples to Oranges to me.
The Sig P227 seems to have gained some notoriety here in Pennsylvania with the PA State Police, but there seems to have been some slight design issues with the first run. The roll pins on the slide had to be redesigned and there are some complaints about the trigger reset, but if you want a 45acp double stock, Its Glock 21, Sig P227 and H&K that are all in competition. The Sig P220 is the only other gun I think I still here about, but that doesn’t have the capacity to really be compared to something like the Glock 21. I don’t know, there’s something imbalanced about double stock 45acp and the guns seem too heavy to me, I would never deviate from Sig Factory Magazines even though there are mags out there that are high capacity, but I’m still a fan of single stock for the Sig P220 and the 1911 models. It’s more about balance than firepower. After all, isn’t a handgun something you use to fight your way back to your rifle?
There are plenty of people out there that stock piled various firearm magazines in the last 2 years, especially after the Connecticut shooting when everyone thought that President Obama would have the Political climate to ban the AR15. I won’t ask all of you reading this, to raise your hands if you actually thought that would happen. I found it embarrassing to watch people panic. I had a friend who recently picked up his first AR15 a Colt 6920 and got a pretty good deal but it looked like it was sitting around for awhile from a Y2K panic buy, apparently the seller had large quantities of magazines for sale and he asked if it was a good deal.
I told him to buy whatever he wanted but if he was buying large quantities of them he better test them out before he thinks they are all going to work in his AR. Gun magazines are like wine, they need to be store properly, and all are made on different dates. There is truth to the fact that a Magpul Pmag will not be durable 30yrs from now just based on it’s material break down, and metal magazines won’t if stored properly, but how bad is your outlook on life if you have to worry about that? If you got a good buy on bulk magazines take atleast a half dozen of them and test them on the range and make sure they drop free, rotate the magazines when you use them, and when they need to be tossed out, open up the packaged ones and test them out again. Don’t expect the brand spankin newly wrapped magazines to work, I’ve one too many times seen people have issues with magazine dropp
I remember hearing all of the stories from my Father’s friends and Uncle’s friends that served in World War II and in Korea, and whenever they talked about the M1 Garand, they always had the statement that “it kicked like a mule” and several of them referenced that they couldn’t hit anything with it. Well, when I grew up it didn’t take me long to realize it’s because some of these guys didn’t have the physical ability to handle the rifle because it was too long and too heavy for them. Part of the reason the M14 had such a short life in Vietnam was due to the fact that it was a major improvement over the Garand, but it was too heavy and still hard to control. You’ll hear the same story from people about various modern firearms, from the Beretta 92FS to the Sig 220 or the 1911 Government Model. You won’t hear that from anyone that served with the M16 or any Law Enforcement that has an M4 Carbine with an adjustable stock. The major complaints are going to be from left handed shooters and that’s why modern engineering and technology is introducing ambidextrous handguns and rifles.
The Glock Generation 4 handguns had a rocky introduction to the Firearm Community but it seems they got the bugs worked out. Smith & Wessons M&P handgun has really taken off but now Sig Sauer is intruding the new Sig 320 that is yet another handgun trying to cut into the Glock Law Enforcement Market. I realize that Glocks are incredible rugged firearms but the take down of the firearm and reality that not all operators are at high levels of competency means there are inevitibles that are going to occur. One of the problems we often have when guns like this come out are the availability of accessories, holster and even now, there are major shortages in Sig Factory Magazines for various firearms that have come out, the Sig 210, Sig 224 and Sig 227 seem hard to keep in stock and as this new Sig Sauer 320 hits the market, if it’s a successfully designed firearm out of the box as they claim it is, it’ll be a while for the Law Enforcement Duty Gear and Holsters to catch up.
There was a transition away from the high capacity or should I say, Standard capacity firearms back in the late 1990’s after the AWB of 1994, but it was mostly because the cost of a gun magazine might have gone up 200% or more. You could easily spend $1000 for a firearm and magazines depending on what it was. Once thing that I will that will never change is balance and speed. I think we have recently witnessed the pinnacle of the M4 Carbine accessorizing craze because now we are seeing more and more that people are wanting lighter carbines and 15 lbs AR15 variants is something that really doesn’t help you out in close quarters gun fights, speed does m ore than what optics you have in close up fighting.
When it comes to caliber and capacity, you really need to put some thought into how much weight you want in a firearm especially a handgun. I’ve shot some double stack 45acp handguns that were so heavy that taking them in and out of holster felt like I was wielding a ball and chain. Throw in spare gun magazines and the bulk and weight can quickly become extreme. The Springfield XD is a nice 45acp gun, but the balance of a 1911 or even the Sig 220 seem to handle better. And lets not forget, the reason for a handgun is to fight your way back to a rifle, so why bother trying to carry all that handgun ammo.
That is a question we get quite often around here and we always throw a question back to a customer. People call or show up wanting us to give them advice but there are a lot of liabilities in telling people what to get or do. So much of gun accessories and firearms has to do with the job at hand and a persons gun skills. I’ve heard people claim that you can’t shoot long range with a 5.56 gun but I see it done all the time at local gun clubs. Sure there are instances of high wind where a 5.56 bullet isn’t going to do very well, but sometimes only a 50 bmg is going to get the job done.
Even the trusty and reliable Mini 14 is an often over looked hunting Carbine, but I’ve seen white tails taken up in Vermont with 75gr expanding rounds. The 6.8SPC would be a more powerful round than what the military is using today but it’s not really going to solve all of your problems. Most of my friends that own them are using them for hunting rounds and not even for Carbine training ect. The only problem you may run into when changing uppers in with the gun magazines. The 5.56 round is better than any handgun round if you use the right kind of ammunition and the AR15 platform gives you lots of caliber options that are really best for upgrading your gun for better hunting.
Today I was listening to a local talk radio host who had a local reporter on and they were talking about the Flash Mob stuff that was going on there. In some people’s minds these incidences are not racial, but that is absolutely absurd. We’ve had at least 3 mob incidences against young white males or old white men and it’s always black on white. In some camps of our society, racism only applies to things that a white man can do and not the other way around. Racism exists in all societies and cultures but only those living in the world that Political correctness has created think it only exists when a victim is black.
One of the callers challenged the local news writer about what the news article would be if a gun owner shot one or more of these individuals when they were committing the crime. The news reporter basically said it at this point it would say something about a “gun owner defends against a mob” I’m paraphrasing, but I thing it was bullshit. We know that if a gun owner shot one of these individuals and reloaded with using spare gun magazines that it would be excessive or bull shit that someone that trained to shoot shot 5 or 6 of the criminals and it was unfair that someone would do that against un armed youth. Considering the ages groups of some of these Flash mobs it would probable not sound justified if a 65yr old man shot 11yr-19yr olders, but the reality is it may well be if things keep up like this.
I have never really liked the feel of having a pistol magazine protrude out of the bottom of the gun unless it is because the gun grip is too small for me. I’ve seen a few of my friends do this on their Glocks, namely the Glock 26 because it is such a small gun. I did put an extension on a Sig 239 which is the only gun I currently own that has this. The first gun that I owned was a Colt 1991A1 and it only came with one pistol magazine. It was a Colt magazine which i thought would be the best gun magazine to have, but that turned out to not be true. After having a few problems with the slide stop not catching, I found out the magazine tab was bending and causing the issue.
I believe it was at a gun show that I picked up 2 Wilson Combat magazines and my Colt 1991A1 ran flawlessly with ball ammo. The gun magazines really ran well with hollow point ammunition but I found the gun to be too picky with hollow point ammo that I pretty much gave up on worrying about it. If you look at the velocity that a 45acp is flying at, I don’t think you’ll have massive over penetration issues compared to 9mm ball. Wilson combat magazines have varying base pads and from my experience this is mostly a concern for competition shooters. If the magazine drops free I don’t need to worry about gripping it and pulling it out for a fast reload.
When I stopped and thought about writing this, I couldn’t believe how many years it has been since the AWB has expired. It feels like it was just yesterday that I could get Glock or Sig Sauer magazines without having to spend $60-$90 for them. Factory magazines are still more expensive than some of the other magazines out there, but they are always the best option for handguns. There are plenty of decent manufacturers for AK or AR15 rifles, and most problems I have seen with AK mags can be fixed with a simple file to the tab on the mag wells. I recently picked up a couple Glocks and XD handguns because I wanted to bring something to the next class I teach that wasn’t a Beretta, Sig Sauer or 1911. Some people just have issues shooting 45acp and I didn’t own anything other than a Sig 220 and a 1911.
I have found the Springfield Armory XD 45acp to be the most comfortable 45acp gun to shoot that was not a steel gun. I find the Glock 21 to be too bulky especially for my female students. The factory gun magazines for my Glocks are less expensive than Sig Factory magazines, but I have never had to replace anything on my Sigs other the springs. Wolff Gun springs work very well in all of my rifle and pistols and I have stockpiles of them so that if I notice any slowness in cycling, I can just swap them out. Rotating your gun magazines is a good way of making sure you don’t wear out the same magazine, because it’s a pain in the neck when you are trying to determine if the magazine is bad or if a shooter is limp wristing a firearm during a training session.