Gear Review: CompMag California Compliant AR-15 Magazine

Americans are ingenious. That’s a well-known fact.Take just one look at the history of arms development in this country and it becomes easy to see what I’m talking about. As a wise man once said, you can’t stop the signalWhere there’s a will, there’s a way. You’d think the California gun-grabbers would have figured that out by now, but I guess not.

What’s one of the easiest ways to get around the definition of a so-called “assault weapon” without having to remove your collapsible stock, pistol grip, flash hider, etc? Give your AR-15 a fixed, 10-round magazine. If it doesn’t detach or hold more than 10 rounds, you’re in the clear. (Makes sense, right? Don’t answer that.)

So, that’s exactly what CompMag did. The way it works is simple. Remove your upper receiver and insert the CompMag in your magwell. Next, put the supplied plate over the screw hole in the mag. Then, attach the mag to the magwell with the screw provided. (They even provide a tube of threadlocker.) Boom, you’re done. Now you’ve got a rifle with a fixed, 10-round magazine. You can hit the mag release as hard or as often as you want; it isn’t going to budge.


Installation was a breeze. Thankfully, I don’t live in a state that requires such silliness, so I opted not to use the threadlocker when testing, which would have created a “permanent solution.” Even so, using it would have only slowed me down by a matter of seconds.

But how do you load it? Once again, the operation is simple. A cover on the side of the unit slides down to provide access to the magazine’s internals. Pushing down a lever and locking the knob under the lip compresses the spring and allows you to load the mag. Simply insert 10 rounds into the mag, close the cover, and release the spring tension. You’re inserting the rounds at the bottom of the fixed portion of the mag, which means that each round thereafter gets pushed up into the internal cavity.


As a bonus, there’s even a round counter on the side that keeps track via the knob as it moved up in the mag.

Function testing couldn’t have been easier. Well, I guess it could have been if the mag fell free and I could slap another one in right away, but considering the circumstances, it was easy. When the bolt locked open after the tenth round, I just slid open the cover on the side of the mag and fed ten more rounds into it. I didn’t experience any issues with feeding, ejecting, locking open, etc.

When it comes down to it, the CompMag is a brilliant – and simple – solution to an annoying problem. Would it be better if California quit infringing on citizens’ rights? Absolutely. Is that ever going to happen? Good question. Until then, buy a CompMag or move out of the state!

Good news for AK owners: a CompMag for your gun is in the works!

Ratings (out of five stars):

Quality: * * * * *
Everything is high-quality and American-made in California. The company didn’t skimp on any aspect of the design or build of the product.

Ease of Use: * * * * *
Installation and loading of the CompMag is completely idiot-proof.

Value: * * * *
At $64.99, the CompMag isn’t exactly cheap. Nonetheless, it is an all-American product and I’m sure it wasn’t cheap to develop, patent, and produce it. At the end of the day, can you really put a price on being able to keep your AR in California? (Again, don’t answer that.)

Overall: * * * *
It sucks that some people have to go to such lengths to keep their AR-15s, but this product makes it suck a little less. It’s super easy to use and incredibly well made. If you find yourself in a situation where you need something like this, I’d definitely recommend it. The price point is the only thing keeping it from a full five stars in my book.

Logan Metesh is a firearms historian and consultant who runs High Caliber History LLC. Click here for a free 3-page download with tips about caring for your antique and collectible firearms.


  1. avatar Joe R. says:

    Again, wouldn’t it be easier (and more lucrative) to make a Constitutional compliant California?

    All you’d have to do is jail or _____ (deport?) [?] a few communist criminals running 3 cities and the capital.

    1. avatar Ghost says:

      Well stated Joe!!

    2. avatar Rebeccanbob says:

      Sorry, recent reliable poll, 19% of People in California own guns. State is too far gone. Just gotta deal with it until we move in five years.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Sorry, your “recent reliable poll” would only indicate how many CA folk “admit” to owning guns. I’m surprised it is that high.

  2. avatar dlj95118 (soon to be 83544) says:

    I absolutely LOVE THIS! And I don’t even own an AR-15.

    It’s a massively big, stupendously huge “F – YOU!” to the Socialistic Cesspool known as California and its overlords.

    God bless innovative capitalism.

    1. avatar Art out West says:

      I’d rather have a “featureless” rifle that accepts 10 round detachable magazines. A stock Saiga, Mini 14, or M1A would work. Even a clip fed, internal magazine gun like a Garand or SKS would be better.

      California needs to either honor the Constitution, or leave the Union (and allow counties to leave California if they wish).

      1. avatar DrewN says:

        This would be fine for a bench or varmint rifle though. Or just pull the gas tube. If you want to run and gun, featureless (like Garand,Mini,Carbinbe etc,not neutered AR) is probably the way to go.

        1. avatar BehindEnemyLines says:

          What I like most is it doesn’t require any permanent modification. If you move out of state, or these asinine law are repaled, or rule of law breaks down, then you can easily revert the rifle back to its correct functionality.

      2. avatar Joe R. says:

        @ Art

        “California needs to either honor the Constitution, or leave the Union (and allow counties to leave California if they wish).

        F dat. Communists need to get run out of there before they F up any more of my America. America needs to get its real estate back and export all the MFs that stood by while it went to sh_t.

        If I’m the one stuck with the job, I decide who’s left.

      3. avatar Kyle in Upstate NY says:

        Don’t forget the Fightlight/Ares SCR!

    2. avatar Ghost says:

      Couldn’t have said it better…

      1. avatar dlj95118 (soon to be 83544) says:

        …thanks, man.


    3. avatar Mark says:

      Actually a much better and bigger fuck you is to not comply with CA laws and use normal mags. I would have just moved a long time ago of course.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        And run the risk of prison and loss of all gun rights for owning unregistered “assault weapons”? The ramifications go beyond that: loss of job, home, professional licenses for crimes of “moral turpitude”, bankruptcy, and so on. As the sole support for my family, the consequences for noncompliance would be unbelievably traumatic, especially when compared to, at most, a few hundred dollars for converting to a featureless configuration that does not require registration. Pass.

      2. avatar dlj95118 (soon to be 83544) says:

        Hi Mark (not Mark N.) – yes, agreed.

        Unfortunately, I’m one of “those people” who get caught. You know, the ones that are made examples. So the risk of becoming a felon outweighs not complying. Mark N. elaborates on this quite succinctly.

        As for moving? Yup! Doing that within six months. Found a nice place in Idaho where I can actually practice shooting while on my property. The former owner thought I was from a different planet (and rightly so) when I asked if there were any shooting ranges where I might practice. He chuckled, pointed to the slight hillside and said – “shoot there!”

      3. avatar Rattlerjake says:

        Why is it that the “first” reaction to illegal laws is to MOVE? That’s what mexican’ts do, they allow their country to be overrun with tyrants and then come running for America. Our forefathers would be ashamed to see what a bunch of pantywaists our countrymen have become. When will conservative Commiefornians get off of their collective asses and FIGHT this assault on their liberty and the Constitution? Being forced to buy a $64 dollar magazine, over a $6-10 magazine, or institute other moronic modifications to comply with ILLEGAL and unconstitutional laws is absolutely insane!

        1. avatar Mark says:

          The war in Kommiefornia was lost a long time ago. No shame in admitting defeat and moving on. Or you could stay and live out decades of futility. Your choice. I’d move to Idaho if I were you. You can’t expect to win every battle.

  3. avatar Lost Down South says:

    Now they need a speed loader or stripper clip for this. Faster still.

    1. avatar Wedge259 says:

      I was thinking they should have made it with stripper clip guides incorporated somehow myself! Sucks for subjects in CA but seems like a clever work around.

      1. avatar Craig in IA says:

        Strippers would be fairly simple- push the rear pin, “break” the upper like a shotgun, insert the stripper into the guides (which aren’t there…), push down, close and move the pin. Might suggest a different pin/detent arrangement if someone was going to do this a lot.

      2. avatar raptor jesus says:

        It’s called bear flag defense or mean arms speed loader – loads through the ejection port lickety split

  4. avatar Rokurota says:

    If fixed box magazines are legal, why not go one step farther and make a mag that can take a charging clip? Slide the whole wall of the mag down, throw in the 10-rounder, release the follower. Faster than some fools can do a conventional AR mag change.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      What about a Mag “over-box” “Slide the whole wall” of the mag over-box down, throw in the 10-round MAG, slide the wall up. Boom. Faster than some fools in CA can eat sh_t, but CA is full of slow MFs.

    2. avatar chris. says:

      Already Done:

      1. avatar Art out West says:

        That looks pretty good.

        1. avatar Joe R. says:

          That actually does.

      2. avatar DerryM says:

        These Mean Arms loaders work pretty well. I bought one and have tested it. The only problem I’ve had is that if you have a ten round box in place, they will sometimes NOT feed the last round and that loose round can jam-up as the bolt carrier will strip the ninth round and both round’s points get stuffed into the breach. If you put a 20 round box in place (which you technically CANNOT in CA), all ten rounds feed reliably every time.

        If you noticed the device attached to the ejection port in the video, it is supplied by Mean Arms, as well. Requires you to remove Ejection Port cover, which I have not done. However, it may increase reliable feeding into a ten round box. The Loader and Ejection Port device are sold separately, or in a bundle.

        The Bear Flag Defense loader works well too, but you have to insert the rounds carefully into the loader. I found the Bear Flag unit feeds 10 rounds into a dedicated 10 round box very reliably. They sell multiple loader bundles at a discounted price, and have a new product in the works that will cause the Commies in Sacramento to choke on their morning coffee. It is named FEATURELOCK and a video can be seen on their Facebook page:

        scroll down a bit looking for “This is FEATURELOCK.”

      3. Some great thinking going on @ this company

  5. avatar Kendahl says:

    California should have no objection. It converts a rifle than can be reloaded by swapping magazines into one that has to be reloaded one cartridge at a time.

  6. avatar Kenneth G Maiden says:

    Only legal “for now”. The control freak lefty progressive asshats will surly find a way to BAN this too.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      We’re talking about RUN-OF-THE-MILL POS communist (D) MFrs, and guns ain’t the only problem with them.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Joe!! You forgot “evil”! Proofread!

    2. avatar Stereodude says:

      Yep, while the POTG are cheering their ingenuity for finding compliant circumvention routes for each new California gun feature restriction, the writers of such legislation are taking notes on how to eliminate the workarounds next time. Eventually they will plug all the holes.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Not that difficult. If they are allowed to limit capacity to 10 (or 20, or 50, or anything else), then the people have granted them the established authority to limit capacity to one. Work around that.

  7. avatar Cliff H says:

    Some Cali-Pol will no doubt object to the “Military grade assault weapon with the clip thingy that goes up (and down}.”

  8. avatar P-Dog says:

    This is one of several ways to be compliant in Commiefornia. Props to outside-the-box thinking.

    My preferred way is just going featureless. I can have my mag release and be happy =).

    Of course, for something like an AR pistol, featureless is not an option, so this might be a slightly better solution than other magazine locks.

    The only drawback to any compliancy solution is that California lawmakers are always coming up with new ways to screw over gun owners. A few years back we had the bullet button as a way to meet compliancy. No more, as that was voted out after San Bernardino (though to be honest, it would have been voted out eventually even without the terrorist attack).

  9. avatar Newshawk says:

    There are two devices now made that allows CA AR owners to reload their fixed box magazines though the ejector port. One is the Bear Flag Defense BF-10 and the other is the Mean Arms MA Loader. Both are shaped similarly and have similar functions. The BF-10 can be seen here: and the MA Loader can be seen here:

  10. avatar Rickster A-15 says:

    I would prefer the compmag to my N.Y. fixed mag. I have to pull the rear pin , lift my upper ,then load each round into my 10 round mag which is not removable. What a pain in the ass.yup where there is a will there is a way. I’d love to will these compliantards out of our lives. That would be a good start to making America great again.

  11. avatar anarchyst says:

    I wonder how many Californians know that both “lawmakers” and “law enforcement” are EXEMPT from the restrictions placed on ordinary Californians. It would appear that a court case is in order, since “equal protection” (and application) under the law” and the Constitution is being violated.
    NRA–where are you on this??

    1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

      I think this would be the #1 way to start hammering at bans and restrictions and expose the hypocrisy of the left; Make the police eat their own dog food, and elminate ANY and ALL police carve outs.

    2. avatar Craig in IA says:

      NRA? Where the hell are Californians on this??? They live there, why don’t they do something? Large scale of the old original Morton Grove, IL thing- if the residents kept electing the jerks that were enslaving them, why should people from out-of-state come “rescue” them?

      You’d have to be naiive to not know where NRA “is” on this, but what do you expect? They should send an army from VA to come occupy state and local government offices and put the ones who passed this BS up against a wall and shoot them? (I know a bunch around here actually think that’s what should happen…) Government closest to the people is the foundation of America, if those people are willing to work with being turned into 3rd class citizens and serfs, that’s their problem. Move. Plenty of good places to live in this country yet.

  12. avatar Scott says:

    Rather than doing this, we should send federal troops to oust the state and local governments and restore Constitutional law to the land.

    1. avatar Richard Baldwin says:

      Ousting state and local governments is not constitutional. Two wrongs don’t make a right. On the other hand, forcing compliance with constitutional restrictions on infringement is a good thing.

  13. avatar SurfGW says:

    Genius! At least until the Attorney General Becerra puts out a letter to ban it.

  14. avatar Joe R. says:

    When the U.S. Troops, sent to the border by Trump to stop illegal immigrants (even from Bangladesh [FU Mexico in your goat a_ _ ]) from crossing , get overrun (and armed MX Cartel thugs come with them) you have a choice on whether can use your “California compliant” weapon on yourself or your governors. Sadly not both, but you sure as sh_t won’t have enough ammo on board to repel the horde.

    1. avatar zebra dun says:

      California National Gurd will probably be sent to fight Trump’s ANG and help migrants.

  15. avatar ironicatbest says:

    Is that gun legal? Looks like an assault rifle to me, I don’t know what these gun company’s are going to do when we all comply and give up our guns. Their going to lose a lot of money.

  16. avatar little horn says:

    now we just need a quick loader for this! lol

  17. avatar Accur81 says:

    I bought one, and it works well. I’ll be training my whole office on how to use them, and to withhold enforcement. Great product.

  18. avatar Anymouse says:

    It needs a guide for stripper clips instead of only inserting a round at a time.

  19. avatar Neil_TX says:

    Bravo for finding a solution for all the law-abiding citizens who will comply (or maybe not).

    I’m sure anyone who’s obtained an AR style rifle AND thinking of using it for criminal intents will spend the $65 to make sure it’s state-compliant.

  20. avatar David Keith says:

    If you choose the move out of the state option for dealing with AR magazines don’t move to Texas if you plan on voting democrat. I’m serious.

  21. avatar zebra dun says:

    Easier and wiser to move.

  22. avatar zebra dun says:

    Is this the New Improved TTAG. Promoting this kind of lunacy?

  23. avatar Dave Hauser says:

    Interesting solution. Covers the 556 AR15 crowd I guess, but not those using other calibers/mags. 458, Gredel, and AR10’s come to mind

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