Todd Jarrett with CMC 1911 magazine (courtesy
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“Wilson Combat is pleased to announce the acquisition of Chip McCormick Custom/Shooting Star Industries,” WC’s email blasts proclaims, “a leading manufacturer of quality 1911 magazines and related products.” And no wonder! According to CMC’s website, Big Mac is mag-obsessed . . .

It was February 2014 and Chip McCormick was unable to sleep. The wheels of his mind were churning and since he was unable to stop them, he turned his attention to a problem that he had been trying to solve for 20 years.

When the feed lips of a 1911 magazine are stressed they warp. Slam a fully loaded 10-round, .45 ACP magazine into a 1911-style pistol that has the slide locked back the magazine comes to a sudden halt. Inertia throws all of the weight of the ten rounds of .45 ACP ammunition against the thin walled lips of the magazine. Do it repeatedly and the lips deform . . .

On that February night, the idea finally came to Chip, add extra material on the end of the feed lips and form that material inward to construct a dual walled feed rail™ system. His rails would replace the 105-year old thin walled feed lips design and make it obsolete.

The Patented Feed Rails™ technology is the first durability enhancement to the feeding device of the 1911 pistol. It is the most recent improvement to magazine design to come from Chip in over 30 years.

And now both patent and production belongs to Bill Wilson’s mob! ‘Cause when it comes to the profit margin reliability of a semi-automatic pistol, mags are really important. Especially for John Moses Browning’s meisterstuck.

How many mags do you have (per gun) and who made them?


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  1. Some…..
    I think MecGar makes most of them…
    Glock makes some…..
    Walther made some ……

    No off Brand crap…..not worth it to have cheap mags

    • True. Bought after market, cheap mags for my Mak. 1 fell apart on its first outing. The other sort of works. Its never locked the slide back when empty. I keep it for range use only.

      • I have onw ProMag for my PP 32. It came with 2 factory mags and i decided i needed three.

        It kinda works…now that i can buy walther mags for PP, i use the ProMag for stoppage drills….they are random and guaranteed…

    • I love cheap mags that I have to file a little bit to make them work reliably.

      Or rusty pitted mags that I have to sandpaper and then reblue.

      If I have to get out the dremel tool, then I’m right there at the sweet spot.

    • All of my magazines got lost in a boating accident years ago. I sadly lost all of my guns and ammo at the same time… 🙁

  2. One dresser, three Rubbermaid tubs and 4 cardboard boxes full.
    Most are OEM, Magpul, surplus.
    Got a few oddballs and Crapcos that see range time.

  3. Too god damn many to list off the top of my head. The most recent addition to the family is a folding brace MPX, and I should be getting 10 gen 1 magazines, made by Lancer, in the mail today or after the New Year festivities. The Gen 1s were on closeout for $19.95 a pop at gunmagwarehouse, so I said “eff it, I’ll stock up”.

    Otherwise I generally go with Mec-Gar where possible as, more often than not, they’re the OEM manufacturer for them anyway. I like to have at least 5 magazines per gun.

    • Why so many? I’ve never understood the compulsion some have to have tens or even hundreds of magazines. Can you explain?

      • For those of us who were buying guns during the dark days of the AWB it is compulsive that we buy as many magazines as we can afford in much the same way that my grandparents kept cases of canned goods in a closet because they remembered the days of the Great Depression.

      • Depends on where you live.

        I can’t just get mags for a reasonable price if they’re over 15 rounds. Unless I go out of state I have to have my dad order them (websites know your billing address so you can’t just send them to friends or family) and send them to me and then I have to pay him.

        Then there’s damage that occurs so a mag gets rotated to the DL for a while etc.

        So, I have tons of mags bought before July 1, 2013.

      • Well, it saves a lot of time for a class. Or competition. Or long range days. Or a zombie attack. Or urban riot.

      • Do you eschew keeping more than a few rounds of ammo at home and stop by the store to buy it on the way to the range too? Do I have to explain why I don’t buy toilet paper a roll at a time as I need it or why my cupboards are full of food too?

        Some people like to be prepared. I guess you’re not one of them.

        • Precisely!
          Be prepared!
          Speed loaders, too.
          And in my 46 years of shooting, I’ve never had a loaded, stored mag loose enough spring tension to come even close to INOP.

  4. Almost all MecGar, although a lot of those are factory OEM from MecGar. CZ, Sig, Chip McCormick, IWI, SGM, Magpul, and a crapload of M1 carbine from KeepShooting.

    • Pricey as they can be, I’ve always stuck to OEM.

      For the M1-Carbines; has been a great source for WWII era mags with a variety of 20 Rd. mags with different source stamps; and years ago I found some twenty mag blocks of 1945 vintage M1-Carbine mags still bundled in their original twenty mag blocks and in their original individual waxed paper wrap out of the Los Angeles area. All were accurately source stamped on the mag. After market mags for the M-1 are iffy.

    • You’re absolutely correct! I’ve accumulated enough mags for each mag fed weapon I own so I can preload at least 100 to 150 rounds. Number of mags depends on mag capacity and whim.

      I’m not buying much these days ’cause I have so much already. It was always easy to hit the “Buy Now” button when it came to mags and ammo. Never enough, especially here in the Lib anti-gun state of CA.

  5. I try to use factory magazines when I can, but I’ll use any that will work. And I keep at least 3 for my pistols and 10 for my rifles. Although ATM I only have one ‘MSR’ anyway. Everything else is bolt actions or has a fixed magazine. And even then I have a big bag full of stripper clips for those as well.

  6. A “few”…

    Mostly Magpul. Some Lancer, ETS, & D&H. Handguns and non-AR long guns are pretty much all OEM.

  7. Twelve, just off the top of my head. Made by PMag, Glock and somebody that makes 30 round aluminum mags for the military.

  8. Glock, P-Mag, Lancer, CMC, AI.
    I hate mag malfunctions. If they do, I toss them.
    Crap, I forget how many and who made them for the 51. And the .30 carbine. Still in wax paper.

  9. I have enough Glock mags, AR15 mags, AK mags, SCAR17 mags SR25 mags, and Walther mags for the rest of my life. I’m 45. So, if they get banned tomorrow, I’m good to go.

  10. I have several ammunition magazines and really cannot count them in my head.

    I have between three and six factory magazines for each handgun. I also have several magazines for a rifle.

    I have the following brands in addition to original equipment manufacturer magazines:
    Chip McCormick

    About ProMag magazines: they are so much less expensive than factory magazines that you can have a 25% defect rate and still save money. I have rarely heard of anyone experiencing a 25% defect rate.

  11. Some folks could buy a quality custom rifle off the money they spent stockpiling mags.

    You don’t need more mags than what you can carry for an all day hump without catching a stroke.

    • I guess it depends on your fear of future legislation. I live in the communist state of WA where I tremble at what the left has in store for us in January. Thus, I have stockpiled mags so I don’t have to comply with their registry.

      • Yeah . . . I’m not looking forward to this WA legislative session either, especially after what they tried last session and with the recent political flip of State Senate? Grrrr……

        That said, after looking back on the last 20 years of ownership of my AR as a guide I figure 3-4 mags per firearm. Nearly every time I’ve gone out shooting I’ve taken my AR (granted, I don’t go out shooting all *that* often). And I’ve never worn out any of my old pre-’94 GI magazines I bough back in the late ’90s’ / early 00’s. Given how long those magazines have lasted I figure 3-4 mags will last a long while.

        And having said all that . . .
        I have 7 Lancer mags, a couple P-mags, and my three original GI mags for my AR, ACR, and two stripped AR lowers (I figure they can share).

        The PTR91 has 11 (one that came with the rifle, and Brownells had a 10 pk for $35 I couldn’t pass up).

        Everything else has 4 magazines except my pistols which I don’t shoot much. One has 3 mags, the other has 2.

    • jwm, fixed it for you. I’m sure you meant to say:
      I don’t need more mags than what I can carry for an all day hump without catching a stroke. You, on the other hand, will determine what is an appropriate number of mags for your particular situation. The opinions of others don’t count for jack.

  12. Yet another reason to eschew the 1911 as anything other than a toy.

    To answer the question: minimum six per firearm. Quadruple, as a minimum, that for any rifle larger than .22LR, those are still at six to eight.

    Side note: screw Ruger for their proprietary and therefore expensive mags.

    • 1911 a toy? I can stick those little red paper caps between the firing pin and hammer and it goes “BANG”. BET your Glock can’t do that.. Ha ha!!!. All joking aside the 1911 mags were not intended for repeated use. That’s where most problems occur, as Chip McCormick tried to fix it for that reason. ….1911 a toy, grrrrr

  13. I go with 6 per modern pistol, and whatever I can get for the milsurp or older pistols. I will add more as time goes on to around 10. For rifles, I’ve lost count. I went with around 10 per rifle at the start, that ratio has dropped as I added rifles. Some of those rifles take special mags or followers so they only get two or so.

  14. For AR I have Lancer, Daniel Defense, Magpul (mostly 30s but plus a 20 for bench/prone and a 40 as a middle finger to Riverdale, IL) and D&H (Only problem I’ve had with any of them is with certain dummy rounds were picky about their mag). Everything else I own doesn’t have any aftermarket mags available anyways.

  15. Lots. Just a few thoughts though:

    If a company is going to use a proprietary magazine design for a model, they should include 3 magazines with a new purchase. Anything less than 3 magazines per gun is silly if you’re going to keep at least one loaded.

    It’s hard to consider a “budget” pistol that only comes with one mag and spares are $55. I’m talking to you, Bersa.

    I found thermold brand extendable 30/45 for 5.56 extremely unreliable crap.

    I don’t like the springs in the m&p shield 1.0. Too long and it bunched up causing ftf and then launched the follower into the grass when I took it out.

    I also like the 25 cap sw oem mags for the 15-22 better than the plinkster tactical 35 rounds. Too hard to load compared to the OEM.

  16. Damn. If Wilson bought McCormick, that means the prices are likely to go up. I’d better buy a couple more while the getting is good. P.S. Does McCormick really make a ten round mag for 1911s? I’ve only seen 8s.

    I have two mags for my 1911, a Kimber 7 round, and a McCormick 8 round that I bought when my Kimber kept on having failures to return to battery and failures to feed (nose dives). (Ultimately it turned out that it wasn’t the mags.) I think I need another. Three mags for my AR, two PMags and one steel (all ten round, unfortunately), and three for my Kahr. When I bought an XD, the special kit with mag holder and holster was out of stock, so the seller threw in two extra mags. None of my other firearms have detachable magazines.

      • Yup. My 10 rounder McCormick hasn’t malfed yet, including the time I loaded a banged-up JHP (I loaded it at least 20 consecutive times) into the bottom of it.

  17. Kind of pissed they bought Chip McCormick. The 1911 blue 8 round shooting stars have always been 100% for me. The MecGar 1911s not so much. Have a few CZs and clones, so I have a LOT of CZ / MecGar magazines for them. Seems like the prices on magazines have been going up over the last few years.

  18. 22 mags for 5 guns, all 10 rounds, all OEM. Springfield gave me two mags and a pistol range bag for free in a come-on special. 3/gun is a minimum and 4 a sweet spot. Though I ended up with 6 for my Ruger 10/22.

  19. I remember the days of the Assault Weapons Ban when I happily paid thirty dollars (and sometimes more) for pre-ban thirty round AR magazines. That has probably colored my perception regarding when you have too many magazines.

    I stopped counting AR magazines a long time ago but I haven’t stopped buying.them. In fact, the sale on PSA for ten Pmags and a Vortex Sparc is rather tempting.

    With regard to pistols I have at least five magazines per unit and they are either OEM or MecGar.

  20. Aren’t magazine’s guns now? Damn that flooded river. Well it was my own fault for running back to get my Hillary Clinton swimsuit edition calendar, Boat was gone hell bent down the river with all my guns, mags, and ammo.

  21. A minimum of five per firearm as a general rule. If you take a class, it’s kind of the bare minimum. You don’t want to be the guy who needs to reload after every other drill. Plus, it just makes sense to have a few extra socked away as a hedge against future supply interruptions.

  22. I keep a minimum of 5 for each individual pistol. When they wear down, they go to the range for practice and if they keep jamming, the trash.
    Except the AR. Always keep at least 10 30rd Magpuls at all times.

  23. “It is the most recent improvement to magazine design to come from Chip in over 30 years.”

    What does that even mean?

  24. You do not have a defensive handgun until it has at least twice as many magazines as you carry daily. One set to practice with and one set for carry.

    More is better.

    For semi auto rifles, 10 is the minimum. Again, more is better.

    My pistols are adequately covered and growing. My rifles are the same. My scorpion is the one that’s not quite ready but almost there.

  25. As with lots of stuff, it varies. My pistols all have 5-6 magazines since steel challenge requires 5 mags and both the Ruger and S&W use oem magazines because they are available cheaply from Midway, and there’s no good aftermarket options. My AR has a mix of 30 round PMAGs and 20 round GI magazines for easier handling prone and my 10/22 runs all Ruger magazines because the factory 10 round rotary magazines are the most reliable and the BX-25 is one of the best box magazines, and reasonably priced.
    I would buy 3rd party magazines from quality sources like Magpul, Mec-Gar or Accurate Mag but I’d never mess with cheapos like Promag or Tapco.

  26. Lifetime supply for every gun, for every child, grandchild, hoped for grandchild plus one and each of their four children……….and still working on their children.

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