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Thread: 1911 magazines don't fit

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default 1911 magazines don't fit

    I have a few 1911's so whenever I come across some used USGI mags I buy them. Most of what I have are the WW11 era mags with the pinned base. My problem is, most of them don't fit. If any of you have had this problem and I would think that you have, what did you find to be the solution? Has the recoil spring over time bowed the sides out? The mags I speak of have various levels of wear, no dents, dings or rust and have been tried in more than one gun. They are just too tight. Some can not be used at all. Before I attempt to put these in a vise I was wondering if you guys might have a better fix.

  2. #2
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    Is this true with more than one of your pistols? I find what you are saying as very curious. I have never had any trouble with any WWI or WWII GI mags what so ever. The only pistol that I've seen that gave me trouble turned out to be a previously demilled (cut apart by the Clinton Administation) RR 1911A1 that had been pieced back together and welded. The mag well was too small and very few mags would work in it. I did see another pistol with the problem but it turned out that the grip screws were too long or screwed in too far and caused restriction. This is an easy fix if this is the problem. GI mags are some of the best and most reliable that can be found. Keep us posted as to what you end up finding.
    Last edited by Duane Hansen; 04-05-2013 at 08:46.

  3. #3
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    The magazine passes through the trigger. Check the trigger itself to make sure the opening is big enough for all of your magazines to slide through. Check the magazine catch too. Also, as Duane said, make sure the grip screws are not binding on the sides of the magazines.

    With a M1911 you'll often run into a magazine that binds or one that doesn't feed reliably, and you simply set it aside or trade with one of your buddies for one that works. But, having several magazines that don't work indicates that the problem lies somewhere in the pistol itself.

  4. #4
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    Yes I know the USGI mags are the best. That's why I buy them. The last bunch I bought was a group of 18. Only one of them fits. I have 5 1911's. What doesn't fit into one doesn't fit into the others as well. Some of these mags bind as soon as it is being inserted, some bind about halfway into the well and some fit but are so tight I have to tap the floor plate to get them out. Some of my GI and after market mags fit and operate well. I guess I will try the "vise".

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Allen, used GI magazines sometimes are good but other times are bad. They all might have been good quality magazines to begin with but they often have been abused. We were instructed to drop empty 1911A1 magazines on the ground when reloading. Repeated dropping on the baseplate can eventually cause the magazine body to bulge on the sides. When that situation gets bad enough, the magazine will hang up. Carefully squeezing the body back into shape in a vice can fix the problem - some of the time. Sometimes, the magazine is worthless. My personal opinion is that one is better served by purchasing new commercial magazines.
    Last edited by rickgman; 04-06-2013 at 11:25.

  6. #6
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    I have found a couple that were bulged out a bit or dented on the side. The vise works pretty well. dents are a little tougher but fixable.

  7. #7
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    Thanks, that's kind of what I figured. You can't see any bulge but something has to be too thick or warped or whatever.

  8. #8
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    A bulge may be hard to see by eye. I think measuring the thickness of a magazine that fits and compare it to the measurement of one that doesn't may be of help.

  9. #9
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    Curious, I've had mags that didn't work properly, but none that didn't fit or were hard to insert or retract { on my 1911's }.

  10. #10
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    How about making a series of measurements using a micrometer or similar tool(s), to check the outer thickness of good fitting magazines vs ones that won't fit to see if the sides aren't bulged. The inner dia. of the trigger, to see that the non fitting magazines aren't thicker in places than the trigger "bow".

    RHB

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