The magazines you carry to the range or pair with your rifle might not garner a whole lot of glory or appreciation, if they garner any at all. However, like your M1 Carbine’s gas piston and bolt group, the magazine your rifle bears is an unsung hero that helps to ensure the operation of your platform.
You could drop the magazine and feed rounds one at a time, but that is not how these rifles were intended to be used, when you’re at the range enjoying some range therapy, that’s downright impractical. Besides, burning brass is its own form of enjoyment.
Here are some signs you might need to swap out your current M1 Carbine magazine for a fresh one, or pair up with another.
●Is your M1 Carbine having a hard time feeding?
Now, this clue needs an overt preface, which is that failure to feed can be caused by a lot of predisposing factors, and might not be a sign that your magazine is failing or flawed. Some rounds, especially hand loads, might not be loaded “hot” enough to cycle the action. Additionally, there could be problems with your gas ports or piston that are causing a cycle failure that seems like a failure to feed. Additionally, deformities on the nose of your cartridges could hang up at the mouth of the chamber and not feed properly.
With all of that squared away, there are two other specific problems associated with feeding that are directly attributable to the magazine. In one instance, if the magazine is not seated properly, it may not position the rounds so that they will strip off and feed into the chamber. This is one issue; a separate one is fatiguing of the magazine’s springs and other internals. When these wear out, it can cause intermittent issues associated with feeding.
●Is your current magazine stalling on the final round?
Another sign that is almost always attributable to your firearm’s magazine is a failure to feed the final round. This can be caused by a variety of issues associated with a magazine follower that causes the mag to fail to feed the final round. Additionally, if the springs are starting to wear but haven’t seriously fatigued yet, it could result in a magazine that feeds nearly all of the rounds it contains but leaves the last one or two behind. If you notice this, it’s time for a little maintenance work or for an entirely new M1 Carbine magazine.
●Do you have trouble seating or removing your M1 Carbine’s magazine?
Occasionally a magazine might encounter issues that make it difficult or impossible to seat and secure it, in which case you won’t be able to use them anymore. These can be caused by the M1 Carbine’s magazine catch, which is actually an issue with the rifle and not the magazine, but it can also be caused by a deformity around the magazine feed lips or along the body of the magazine itself. Either way, even a magazine that has no internal damage that will not seat properly is worth little since you can’t use it. If it’s been damaged to the point that it won’t seat, you’ll have to get after a new M1 Carbine magazine.
●Do you spend too much time loading?
You might also need a new magazine if you spend too much time at the range loading. You’re there to shoot, not stuff .30 Carbine rounds into a 15 round magazine. Perhaps the issue is not that your magazine doesn’t work, but that it doesn’t hold as much as it should. If that is the case, then you may be able to pick up a 30 round mag to replace the 15 round mag you’re using. It’ll save you some time at the range.
●Are you noticing that the magazine is starting to wear out visually?
Finally, if you are noticing that the magazine looks physically old and doesn’t look as young as it once did, that manifestation of aging may be a sign that it’s time to replace it before it actually fails and you have no choice. Pay close attention to how the magazine loads, how well it seats, and how well it feeds. Those functions could be a degree or two away from slipping, and it’s better to be proactive than reactive.
Whether you’re looking for a single spare 15 round mag or would like to get yourself a few spare 30 round mags to enhance your time at the range, visit Sarco Inc. at SarcoInc.com. Their expansive online collection of firearms and parts includes plenty of spare and replacement mags for M1 Carbine rifles and many other parts for those platforms as well.
Visit their website to see if you can find what you need, and get in touch with them by phone at 610-250-3960 if you need more assistance.