M*CARBO Brotherhood

How to/ Should You Break in a Magazine

I looked through the forum trying to see if there was already a topic about this and didn’t find anything :confused: I just bought several 31 round ETS magazines for my Keltec Sub 2000 and was wondering what, if anything, you had to do to break in the magazines before use. I overheard a conversation at my local gun shop where the consensus was to load up the magazines and store them from a week to a month and then store them unloaded.


First things first…whatever you hear a gun shop, ignore. I’ve heard more ignorant s**t out of gun shops employees mouths than the democratic party spews.

Second. Use them. Keep them loaded. Loaded magazines do not, I repeat, DO NOT fatigue the springs. I’ve personally ran mags that have sat fully loaded for 5 years and more(I have a lot of spare mags) without issue. And an unloaded mag is absolutely useless.

Third. I will take down and clean my mags every so often. No real set time limit or round count. Once I see enough carbon building up, I clean them.

Fourth. Don’t buy cheap mags! Promags, in my opinion, are the bottom of the barrel. Stay away. Factory mags are the way to go with the exception being for 1911s…and Ars. There’s plenty of good options for ar mags.

All of this is my personal opinion and take it for what you will. Everyone’s mileage may vary, but this is what I adhere to and it seems to work for me


Thanks for the quick reply @d.kaufman2154. I like to get second and third opinions on things before I apply them. And i agree that some of the stuff said at the gun shop can be total bad advice.


I agree with @d.kaufman2154…and I work at a gun store on the weekends :joy: I have never heard of anyone breaking mags in other than if the spring is really tight but even then I think the only thing you can really do is get a speed loader and save your time and thumbs haha, I personally have 5 mags for my SUB2k all stay fully loaded, 3 for my 308, and 4 for my glock and keep all loaded, but it was a good question and made me do a google search to make sure I wasn’t wrong!!


I’m sure you’re the one that gives the good advice at your store :wink:. Thanks for the Confirmation! I guess ill load them up and stow them.


@d.kaufman2154 Agree with Don 100%

I guess you could break it in, loading and unloading a ridiculous number of times.
Or even use a dowel or something and work the spring up and down.
The only time I could suggest this is if you were having issues with the mag.

But leaving one loaded or unloaded, will not weaken the springs, IMHO.


Most definitely. There are some mags that are harder to load at first, that’s where the use them comes in. Run them a few times and that usually helps. Speed loaders are great for mags that have stiffer springs though. I’ve had a few mags thru the years that are just a Bi**c to load to capacity. Speed loader definitely helps with that


@jobes94 I load all my mags and keep them loaded ! The Old Thing of Spring
problems and that They will not Reset back is BS’ What good is a Empty Mag when Zombies are at the Fence.


Love me some zombies.

Yeah, the only empties I have are for my new calibers.
And I haven’t bought enough ammo to fill them up yet.


Well Said on all Points! Dry lube does not hurt the springs before Reinserting them!


I actually really like Hoppes #9 dry lubes. It doesn’t collect the dirt, grime, and carbon like wet lubes do. I actually use this in all my magazines when I strip and clean and really seems to work well.


You Sir like me a Wrench for 45 plus years’ lube/oil cheap’ Dry internal Parts SEIZE!! p.s. Born in Fort Wayne now that’s Funny.


@jobes94 I always tear down and clean any new (steel) mags. From the factory, they will have a coat of machine oil. Did have some M1 carbine mags that had the spring in backwards from the factory. Then it’s to the range to check function.


Buy yourself a maglula speed loader problem solved lol


dam that was my last like @ValorSolo


Agree with you completely. Keep mine loaded and when I do clean them, I use Hornady One Shot dry lube. Magpul mags for my AR and AK, and Wilson Combat Elite Tactical Mags for all three of my Sig 1911’s (full-size, carry and compact) Life time warranty on Wilson mags and they state that when loaded, the new ETM springs will outlast the service life of the ammo. Hope I’m still around long enough to test out that claim.


I left my ETS 31 round mags loaded for a week. Went to shoot and they wouldn’t go in the mag well because the top of the magazine had swollen up. All were loaded with 31 rounds. As such, I don’t like the ets msgs much. I haven’t had similar issues with any other magazine. Just my experience.


Sorry, I couldn’t edit. After they wouldn’t fit, I unloaded them and they clicked right in.



Welcome to the MCarbo Brotherhood.


@Homegrown welcome to the forum