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I am a new firearms owner and have heard that loading a magazine and leaving it loaded will weaken the spring over time. Is this true and should I avoid loading magazines and storing them in my gun safe. I live in NY and we live under the draconian safe act and can only have 10 round magazines and load only 7 rounds in them. Not sure if that makes a difference?
 

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Welcome to SIG Talk!

No, storing rounds in the mags will not deteriorate the springs. The action of loading and unloading the mag is what causes the wear. Load 'em up and don't worry about it! I don't expect any of my springs to fail before I'm gone!
 

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Welcome from Northern VA!


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I've always been told that any magazine made in the last ten years won't fatigue due to being stored loaded. I clean my mags every time I clean my guns and leave a light coating of CLP on the follower and I've never had any issues. I do rotate which mags I have loaded (1 in the gun, 2 in the nightstand) every few weeks just for my own piece of mind. Whether that helps or not I'm not sure but trading mags is also a good time to do a once over on the gun make sure everything looks good and clean any excessive oil.
 

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Welcome from Long Island. Yes I'm from the Emperor Cuomo empire. I think he took the "Empire State" slogan a bit too literally.

Great group here. Lots of experience and very willing to help.
 

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Welcome from NE

I store loaded mags. I change the springs on CCW every few years.
 

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I have been using semi-automatics and their magazines since 1985 (revolver prior) and have always kept my duty mags loaded 24/7/365, never a problem, and I know of no one in our area departments that do otherwise.
 

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While the general consensus of shooters seems to be that keeping a magazine loaded doesn't weaken the springs, I've read differing opinions. One article that sticks in my head was on the Wolff Gunsprings website some time back that indicated it is likely a good practice to load down high capacity pistol magazines a round or two and rotate magazines to lessen the continuous stress on the springs. Since Wolff is probably the leading manufacturer of springs for firearms in the USA, I tend to follow their recommendations. So, I keep several magazines on hand for every mag-fed firearm. For defense autos, I keep 2-3 loaded and have several more to rotate every 3 months. For some guns I have a few dedicated range-only magazines. I also download one or two rounds in higher capacity magazines used in defense guns. This is just my personal practice because I'm kind of obsessive about some things. This practice has worked for me for many years so I continue with it.
 

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Materials under stress weaken at a greater rate than those at rest.

That being said I keep a good portion of my pistol/rifle mags loaded.Often some are downloaded a round or two(+1 Dogguy) mostly the AR's. HD gun loaded to capacity.
 

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I've got mags that are older than I am by a long shot, nearly 100 years old and a bunch that are 50 years old. Many loaded for years at a time work fine.
 

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Springs and their functions are not all equal. While I have never had to replace springs in my guns, I have had to replace many springs on the cars I serviced over the years.
You've all seen them, unintentional low riders. Some times just age, but many times they were over loaded. A spring worked beyond the limit it was intended to operate at will fail much sooner.
 

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I have no worry about Sig magazine springs at all. I do however rotate the bullets every time I have the occasion to unload the weapon. I don't like to keep racking the same bullet over and over or having the same bullet in the top of the magazine. So every time I unload I also empty the magazines to move them around.
 

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I have stored rounds in many different brand mags for many months at a time with no noticeable degrading of the mag spring. I believe the compression and release does more wear.
The mag spring is a wear out part anyway and should be replaced when they cause any problems.
Just my opinion.
 

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In a nutshell, unless you exceed spring stress levels, eg. Load 30 rounds in a 20 rnd mag, a spring is only limited by number of fatigue cycles and the amplitude of the cycles. In lay terms, a loaded magazine does not wear out sitting on a shelf or in a pistol, it wears out when being used.

Here is a good paper on the subject

http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2692&context=icec


Semper Fidelis
 
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