USGI 30 Round Mags--Steel vs. Aluminium ? - Shooting Sports Forum


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Old 05-14-2017, 11:57   #1
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USGI 30 Round Mags--Steel vs. Aluminium ?

OK, you are prepping for a SHTF day. Regardless of the current law, you are going to need 30 round magazines. Disregarding plastic for the moment and sticking with metal USGI types, which do you prefer and why, steel or aluminium?

Currently I use steel ASC ten rounders. ASC makes both stainless steel and aluminium. Brownells makes their own and markets aluminium. We are really not taking price here, everything seems to be around $15.00 per mag and that is ok with me.

Stainless steel or Aluminium????? Why??
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Old 05-15-2017, 12:44   #2
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Lots of exp w/ aluminum. Treat them right, they'll last forever. Not alot of exp w/ steel ar mags, just the crappy "national" or"U.S" brand. Those are the ones made of soft steel, and heavily blued. Avoid them like the plague, no matter how cheaply they sell for. Don't discount Magpul plastic mags. They work, and work well. They're milspec approved, and carry a NSN.
The most important thing is to test them. If any mag fails in any way, it is a range only mag. I keep 100 mags loaded at all times, in various locations. 70 are USGI alum mags, and 30 are magpul gen 2's. All are tested, and marked.
My neighbor has some ASC stainless mags, for 6.5 grendel. They don't feed too well.
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Old 05-15-2017, 15:10   #3
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I'll second the Aluminum GI Mags. I have over 100 of them, some from the 80's and 90's, the rest are all newer within the last 15 years. Pretty much all I run. I have a few Magpul and ETS magazines, but prefer my USGI mags, have never had a problem with proper maintenance (i.e. cleaning, etc...). The only mags I currently buy are the Aluminum Okay Industries SureFeed magazines with the updated follower (Magpul type), or surplus USGI.
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Old 05-15-2017, 18:37   #4
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I've used usgi aluminum mags back in the 70s with the old A1s-seemed almost flawless in the salt and sand.Cut away to the nowdays and I use the blackened stainless and the gen 2 magpuls-only because the alum mags seem to be getting scarce around here!I still believe that the magpuls are tougher mags after all of the torture testing done in the sandbox/rockpile!!!
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Old 05-16-2017, 20:54   #5
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There is no such thing as a steel "USGI" M16/M4/AR mag.

"USGI" mags are aluminum.

I've use a metric ton of Brownells mags with MagPul follower without issue.
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Old 05-17-2017, 13:39   #6
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Great responses guys, thanks. Brownells sells mags but they seems to do a lot of work with two or three models of aluminium mags. I'm probably going this way for a SHTF supply of four or so just in case.
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Old 05-17-2017, 19:43   #7
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Originally Posted by Fertig View Post
Great responses guys, thanks. Brownells sells mags but they seems to do a lot of work with two or three models of aluminium mags. I'm probably going this way for a SHTF supply of four or so just in case.
Four mags is essentially zero mags.

Mags are cheap... Grab 20-30 to start.
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Old 05-18-2017, 04:20   #8
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Originally Posted by Fertig View Post
Great responses guys, thanks. Brownells sells mags but they seems to do a lot of work with two or three models of aluminium mags. I'm probably going this way for a SHTF supply of four or so just in case.
Basic load is at least 8 mags, fertig. They're cheap, stock up, and then fill them up.
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Old 05-18-2017, 07:32   #9
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I do not disregard plastic. I use Magpul Generation 3, thirty round magazines, no window in them either.
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Old 05-19-2017, 14:07   #10
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Originally Posted by 2rangers View Post
Basic load is at least 8 mags, fertig. They're cheap, stock up, and then fill them up.
Hey, I'm a small guy and travel light.
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Old 05-20-2017, 10:07   #11
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Aluminum USGI mags are my main ones (with a few ASC 10 rounders for compliance and Color coordinated PMags in the mix )
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Old 05-20-2017, 14:03   #12
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Originally Posted by Gator Monroe View Post
Aluminum USGI mags are my main ones (with a few ASC 10 rounders for compliance and Color coordinated PMags in the mix )
I am in a ten round state too but what is 10 rounds in a real SHTF, self defense or combat situation. Hell, we may be in a shooting civil war at any time. My 30 rounders are going to someone in a free state who will bring them to me if necessary. This all means to me I can't experiment and need something reliable in a 30 rounder the first time since it will be my only time.
Sure, I can take some ten rounders along with the 30 rounders to remind me that I have fired 4x30 and if I am still fighting it might be a good idea to leave about the same time I get down to ten rounders.

Right now people are saying aluminum is the best so that looks like my choice.
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:13   #13
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Brownells USGI Aluminum 30 Rd Magazines ...

Brownells USGI specification aluminum 30 rd magazines seem to work OK. I think, (not sure) the current batch have the updated, (again?) green follower?

If you have a bunch of older USGI aluminum mags with various butt plate vendor stampings there is a trick of making them work better. See old post.

We have found it seems to matter little how old they are or who made them. What is important is that the mags work for you. Keepers, traders, crushers.

Edit: Tan HB of CJ, TAN! Not Green. Thank you Ontos.

Last edited by HB of CJ; 05-21-2017 at 14:01. Reason: correction
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:58   #14
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Originally Posted by HB of CJ View Post
Brownells USGI specification aluminum 30 rd magazines seem to work OK. I think, (not sure) the current batch have the updated, (again?) green follower?

If you have a bunch of older USGI aluminum mags with various butt plate vendor stampings there is a trick of making them work better. See old post.

We have found it seems to matter little how old they are or who made them. What is important is that the mags work for you. Keepers, traders, crushers.
Current spec is tan follower. Has been for about 10 years.

Just get the USGI mags with the MagPul follower. Good to go.

Mags are wear items. Use them until they're beat up and then trash'em.
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Old 05-21-2017, 08:41   #15
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My prebans are mostly Nam Era 60s70s (Simmonds) (Adventure Line) (Parsons) (Colt) and a lot of the tooling used today is the same exact machinery from those contractors passed on to newer companies
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Old 05-22-2017, 12:59   #16
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I have a bigley pile of old Parson's aluminum mags for that rainy day. I'm in the process of going through them and replacing springs and followers as I have spare funds available.
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Old 05-23-2017, 04:45   #17
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You'd be very surprised just what you can carry when the chips are down. Wings sprout from your feet, and suddenly you're as strong as an ox. Better to have and not need, than to need and not have.
EDIT: This post was for Fertig, but I didn't hit quote button.
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Old 05-24-2017, 08:07   #18
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I have to say that you guys with 100 loaded 30 round mags are definitely committed!

I only have about 12 and a bunch of 20's and some 10's

I obviously am a dilatant.

Randy
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Old 05-24-2017, 10:00   #19
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Originally Posted by W.R.Buchanan View Post
I have to say that you guys with 100 loaded 30 round mags are definitely committed!

I only have about 12 and a bunch of 20's and some 10's

I obviously am a dilatant.

Randy
Naww, you're just still working on building your supply.....
They don't go bad, can be sold/traded if need be, and they help give me a peaceful, secure feeling!
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Old 05-24-2017, 12:43   #20
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Originally Posted by cjclemens View Post
I have a bigley pile of old Parson's aluminum mags for that rainy day. I'm in the process of going through them and replacing springs and followers as I have spare funds available.
"Bigley". A Trumpian word.
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Old 05-24-2017, 12:44   #21
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Originally Posted by 2rangers View Post
You'd be very surprised just what you can carry when the chips are down. Wings sprout from your feet, and suddenly you're as strong as an ox. Better to have and not need, than to need and not have.
EDIT: This post was for Fertig, but I didn't hit quote button.
I'm volunteering for YOUR unit.
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Old 05-24-2017, 12:46   #22
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Originally Posted by Gator Monroe View Post
My prebans are mostly Nam Era 60s70s (Simmonds) (Adventure Line) (Parsons) (Colt) and a lot of the tooling used today is the same exact machinery from those contractors passed on to newer companies
So it is the spring, follower and plate which are evolving and changing, right?
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Old Yesterday, 09:02   #23
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Originally Posted by Fertig View Post
So it is the spring, follower and plate which are evolving and changing, right?
The floor plates & Springs last , the followers are in flux , I like my USGI mags unmolested ( perhaps green followers )
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Old Yesterday, 09:07   #24
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A real Mag Whore will have magazines for weapons he may never own ( Like a casual Mag Whore will have some Makarov mags ( A Bulgarian and a few Russian & Chinese ) an oddball VZ 52 Mag and a SVT 40 mag ( just in case) and even a few Glock mags ( even though he is a 1911 fanboy with a few 3rd Gen S&W on the side ...
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Old Yesterday, 11:02   #25
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Originally Posted by Fertig View Post
I'm volunteering for YOUR unit.
Always room for more, as long as you can shoot rifleman on the army/appleseed AQT!
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