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Discussion Starter #1
How long can you leave a magazine loaded without it affecting the spring, and with what frequency should you dismantle the mag and let the spring relax? The manual was a bit sparse in this area.

Just asking since I keep my XD loaded and handy at night, and am getting a bit weary of unloading the mags every other day...
 

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Ghostin said:
How long can you leave a magazine loaded without it affecting the spring, and with what frequency should you dismantle the mag and let the spring relax? The manual was a bit sparse in this area.

Just asking since I keep my XD loaded and handy at night, and am getting a bit weary of unloading the mags every other day...

Then don't do that. You're probably stressing the springs more loading and unloading them than you would be leaving them loaded. For months or years at a time.


Reminds me of the old debate; better to turn the computer off at the end of the day, or leave it running? I'm a 'leave' it running guy. I've got computers that have been on for years, aside from brief intervals during power outages or moving, and I've got magazines that have been loaded for years, except for brief intervals of unloading them at the range.
 

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Ghostin,

Don't worry about unloading your magazines, or stressing the magazine spring. I have S&W Model 59 magazines that have been loaded for over 20 years and they still function just fine. With modern spring steel, you're not going to wear the springs out from keeping them compressed. That's what they were meant to do.

If you think about it, police magazines are kept loaded all the time, and function just fine. Some departments only qualify twice a year, so that means the magazine springs are compressed for about six months at a time, and still work as intended.

You're going to wear out before most of your magazine springs will. Besides, if you do happen to get one that's weak, Wolff sells replacement springs at a very reasonable price.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 

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Hello. I've got an Engineering background but its been a while since I've been in school. From what I remember a coil spring, which a magazine spring is just a variation of, works by resisting a twisting motion thru the cross section of the wire. Like if you had a straight wire and had a vise-grip on each end and tried to give it a torsional twist, it will try to return to a relaxed state. Now if you twist that straight wire enough eventually you will rearrange molecules and it will not return to the same original state. The longer the wire is the more you can twist it with out deforming it. A coil spring is just a very long straight wire coiled to make it compact and it gets the same torsional stress when you compress or expand it. It is designed to receive a certain amount of stress over the entire length of the wire without deforming it. I'm sure a loaded magazine spring was engineered to accept the amount of stress it receives without permanent deformation. If you are concerned just leave it loaded with half of the rounds, as you will be putting half the stress on the spring. Also I’ve seen sources for springs so even if you were able to damage them you should be able to replace them.
 

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I choose to leave my mags (2) loaded all the time I usually rotate them about once a month at the range, I have a total of (6) that I use and (6) more in storage that have only been used once to test
 

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Several materials engineers have told me that keeping magazines loaded does not wear out the springs at all. The key is that the springs are made out of "spring steel" which will bend but not deform under the designed stress.

At first a new spring will take a slight set and become slightly shorter. A properly designed spring will have this set figured into the working length so that the spring works properly after having taken the set.

Leaving a spring compressed does not deform or wear out the spring, but repeatedly loading and unloading the spring will eventually wear it out. So, leave your magazines loaded if you want the springs to last longer!
 

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I just got my new AR and had 4 mags loaded since my USMC days. That was 1979 and when I went out today and fired these 26 year old loaded mags they worked just fine.
 
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