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Reader Thundervoice writes:

I’m an engineer. I’m always looking for a cheaper and better way to do something. Having recently begun competing in local USPSA events, my collection of magazines has grown to the point that I’m losing precious gun safe space laying them on top of the shelf. While there are ready-made products for storing magazines in a gun safe, I decided to see if I could find a cheaper way to store my magazines on the bottom of a shelf instead of laying them on top . . .

So I spent a grand total of $2.14 at the local box home products store and bought a package of six one-inch round magnetic disks. They are one-eighth inch thick so I searched my garage for some material the same thickness and found some fiberboard under my workbench.

I cut out a 2´6 inch piece, drilled three one-inch holes in it, set three magnets in the three holes, covered each side with clear packing tape, and nailed the thing to the bottom of my shelf. It worked so well, I made a second one.


Total time invested: about 45 minutes to find the material, cut, drill, and install both.


The only downside: my largest collection of magazines turned out to be aluminum so I can’t hang them from the magnets. But give me some time and I’ll figure out an inexpensive way to store them as well.

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  1. Glue a tiny neodyminium magnet to the outside (or inside if possible) of the aluminum mags and use the same technique as above.

  2. In the “secure container” (or not) loaded mag in the piece. With round chambered (or not).

    Why store other mags in the “secure container”? For ready weapon/s keep loaded mags in a handy/ready access belt/bag.

  3. Used prescription pill bottles. cut the bottom off tall ones, roll up your cleaning mat and put inside. Shorter bottles with a few holes in the top to vent, store bore snakes or misc small parts in them. I use a permanent marker to note on the top “.22” or “Glock 19”. Stacked in a range bag or ammo can it’s easy to find one looking down in.

  4. Leave them hung too long on the magnets and you will magnetize your booollits!

    Seriously, rare earth magnets can be found at harbor freight for cheap.

    • Leave them hung too long on the magnets and you will magnetize your booollits!

      That would suck. You’d fire at a target to your east or west and the bullet would do a 90 in mid air and head north.

      Or south, in Australia, but they don’t have guns there so that won’t be an issue.


      • Unless you are using steel cased rounds, I’m wondering what part of the bullet, or cartridge might be made out of steel, other than the primer cup, if not brass. Maybe there are some kind of steel inserts in the bullet that I am unaware of. With all this new “kill ‘um dead” ammo coming out, I’m never sure what inside the box anymore.

  5. What about Magpul AR mags? I suppose of they are loaded with TulAmmo or Silver Bear they would probably stick to the magnets.

    I like the idea, but I would rather have something a bit nicer looking. Maybe something as simple as lining it with a cloth since paint would get scratched up.

  6. I’m not an engineer, so take this with any number of grains of salt, but if magnets won’t work on nonferrous mags, might a similar upside-down rig using strong elastic fabric and heavy-duty staples or screws be an alternative? I’m thinking something akin to a large bandolier, except instead of open loops you’d pin down the material into “pockets” and mount the rig on a downward-sloping grade. That way, you could store them loaded and not worry about the the weight causing them to sag.

  7. As a competitor, I never want to be without my mags. No mags = no competing. Which is why my magazines ( and also critical holsters and belts) live in my range or gun bags. Only ever to come out when shooting or cleaning, then they go back in. This way I never have to worry about forgetting them. My range/pistol and rifle bags as dedicated pockets for magazines, so they don’t get banged around much at all.

  8. Hate to burst your bubble but, this idea is already out there. Gun Storage Solutions sells a product called the mag mount for $9.95. Its basically a magnetic sheet that tacks to the underside of a shelf or along the door of your safe. I’ve had two of them in my safe for years. They work great. Props for a good DIY version of it though.

  9. This will hold about 16 or so double stack pistol mags, even stock G17 mags loaded.

    Sure other places sell the same product for about the same price, $13 Home Depot carries other magnets some with hooks they claim can hold 65lb if you wanted to hang something on the side of your safe.

    I sit them on top with the hook over the side otherwise they slowly slide down if they support too much. sales some magnets also, good place to find parts for projects, fasteners, switches, tools, etc.

  10. I just remembered that I bought a Maxpedition dual mag loop for my Versipack: it had Velcro on back. I’ll have to see if the Velcro sticks to the felt lining in my safe. It was too high in price to store all my mags (I use a Plano ammo box for that), but it would be useful in inconspicuously keeping a couple loaded mags on hand if needed in a pinch.

  11. Go to container store, but some plastic storage containers, label containers w label maker. I have a few w mags labelled by manufacturer (I also store spare gun parts this way). Problem solved

  12. Since your screwing into a wood shelf, a simple 2 piece wire frame would work just as well as the magnets.
    I bet if you shop around you can still find rubber coated hangers, if not 10 gauge electrical wire would work really well, can be bought at the hardware store by the foot.

  13. I use magnets to store my wrenches.

    For magazine storage, a gunsmith friend long ago started hanging onto the stiff cases for glasses that his wife bought, used, then replaced — the open-end ones that glasses slide into, not the coffin-like ones. A simple bit of Liquid Nails to attach one to a wall, and you’ve got a storage for a mag. The limit on this system is that glasses cases aren’t big enough for all.

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