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I have always been taught that you can keep mags loaded for very long periods of time as long as you load them max minus one. This of course is to keep the magazine spring from streaching and becoming too weak.

Is this the case or what is the real truth?
 

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Repeating cycling of the spring (compressing and releasing) is what wears one out fast.

A typical magazine spring wouldn't stretch and become too weak. It would relax and lose a 'resistance to compression' in other words.

Cheers.
 

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My understanding is that storing modern mags loaded will not cause the spring to weaken. That may not be the case with older magazines however...
 

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Maybe I'm wrong, but if it's held sprung for a long period of time, I can see it weakening, not springing back as much, or whatever. I also leave mags loaded, so I hope it doesn't matter. I'm sure it is better to unload them if the rifle is going to sit for a while.
 

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Springs fatigue only when flexed, not when maintained under tension. They don't lose springiness when they're left uncompressed, do they?
Springs fatigue any time they are under load, whether moving or not and yes, when a spring is held under tension over a period of time, it takes a 'set' and will lose 'springiness'. Magazines left loaded - even partially - will eventually lose enough function to not feed properly.
Joe
 

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I have had AK's and AR's with the mags loaded for years at a time, and have never seen a mag fail to work. Same with pistols, for that matter. I figure that I won't live long enough for it to matter. uh...that didn't sound good, did it? hehe ;)

Handguns are for when you don't really want to be seen as "carrying a gun" and to fight your way back to your rifle or heavier piece of ordnance. Unless, of course, you have a Krinkov! Then, you can just carry that! hehe ;)
 

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Doesn't matter unless you have some cheap knock off magazines using piano wire as a spring. There are some good articles out there on the web that may help. One site to look at is Oracle5.56, which answers the question. I also remember seeing another where early 1960s' military mags that had been loaded were finally used with no problems at all. I had a commander a few deployments ago that was convinced we needed to rotate mags every month and restretch the springs, which of course does more damage than anything. He was the kind of guy that would listen as long as you provided proof, which I did, and we had no problems with mags at all, even when we fired fully loaded mags at one of our last ranges that had been loaded since 2003.

Then again, this is one of those questions where there will always be controversy.
 
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