Recommendations on 1911 Mags?


September 29, 2005, 09:15 PM
Hello All: I just bought my first .45 (SA G.I. 45). When I took it to the range I got mis-feeds right away on just the last round (again and again). Are the supplied mags just bad? I bought a Chip McCormack 8-rounder and that helped a little.

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Sergeant Sabre
September 29, 2005, 09:24 PM
No problems with my stock Springfield magazine. I, and many others, like Wilson Combat 47D 8-round magazines.

Perhaps we can help with your problem. Please describe, with the maximum detail possible, what you mean by "mis-feed".

September 29, 2005, 09:35 PM
I am using Novak mags in my Rock Island. +-1500 rounds so far without a FTF. I highly recommend them.

September 29, 2005, 09:37 PM
All Wilson All the time

Make mine 47D

September 29, 2005, 09:37 PM
I bought a box of Remington .45 ACP 230 Gr and loaded the "row" of 5 in the mag. The first 4 went fine and the fifth jammed. Having never fired a .45 this alarmed me. I removed the mag and pulled the slide to eject the unfired round. It was pointing up and had to be plucked out. The next grouping of five produced the same result (again only on the last round). I went back into the shop and bought their in-stock mag (the Chip McCormick). Got the same results on the Remingtons. I bought some MagTech ammo ane the next 2 or three mag loads seemed fine. IT seems the gun is unusually picky.

Ken Rainey
September 29, 2005, 10:04 PM
Shouldn't be the magazine, is it the standard 7 rd mag with the dimpled follower?, which should be good to go - especially new. Did you clean and oil the pistol before shooting it? Ammo could have been out of spec - shouldn't have been but?? Could be too much extractor tension. I'd give it a good cleaning first and maybe try removing the recoil spring and plug and see how it push feeds - IF USING LIVE AMMO BE VERY VERY CAREFUL.

September 29, 2005, 10:13 PM

September 29, 2005, 10:16 PM
1911Tuner and others make a strong case for using 7-round magazines instead of 8 rounders. I've had good luck with Wilson Combat magazines - both 8 and 7 rounders. But I use the 7 round Wilson for personal defense.

September 29, 2005, 10:20 PM
Chip McCormick 8-rounders have worked in all my Colts and Argentine Colts without exception.

The Hi-Standard OEM mags that Midway sells also have been reliable for me.

September 29, 2005, 10:29 PM
Please see sig line.

September 29, 2005, 10:54 PM
Never had any problems with the two 7 rd SA mags that came with mine... Course I've never had any problems with the 10 rd CMC or 8 rd CMC mags I've bought in addition to those either...

September 29, 2005, 11:04 PM
Stock SA mags are quite good- I have several. Before making final determinations, make sure your gun is broken in; it will take 200-500 rounds before the gun settles down (usually on the lower end of that).

I like Chip McCormick PowerMags the best; I know 1911Tuner disagrees with that choice, but my gun is quite happy with them. The regular SA mags are made by Metalform, and they have yet to do me wrong either.

September 29, 2005, 11:44 PM
stock colts are fine for the range, but for carry, I wouldn't trust anything except wilson 8 rounders. I have tried loading 8 different rounds, firing on weird angles, clean, dirty, and everytime the wilsons feed right. I can't say the same for factory colt, mec-gar or SA mags.

September 30, 2005, 12:30 AM
I have several dozen 1911 mags, all the way from OLD GI mags to new McCormick 10 rounders. The consistently best mag for the money IMO is the McCormick Power Mag. I have put tens of thousands of rounds through them without a bit of trouble, and it is the only mag I have owned that I can say that about.

The Wilson mag is a great mag too, AFTER you put a quality spring in it.

September 30, 2005, 01:01 AM
Get these mags right from Wolff:

7 rounds, dimpled follower, Wolff upgrade, metalform body. You won't do better, it's all right there. Tactical basepad recommended. :)


September 30, 2005, 06:11 AM
Howdy gordx,

Your last round malfunction is known as a Bolt-Over-Base feed, and is caused by the slide outrunning the round as it struggles to get into feeding position under the inertial forces of recoil. The magazine is probably okay. Most of the 7-round mags that come with the GI Springfields are, though a few have shown up recently that aren't. The problem is that the spring is too light...and light mag springs most often rear their malfunctioning heads on the last round, when tension is at a minimum. A Wolff 11-pound spring will cure the problem unless there's something wrong with the mag. Order from Brownells.

September 30, 2005, 09:42 AM
As far as 8 rounders go, CMC PowerMags and Tripp's CobraMags for me.

I've never had a mag related problem with PowerMags, CobraMags, or MetalForm 7 rnd w/ round-top followers ...I have had issues with some 47Ds though (last round feed issues specifically).

I chose to run CobraMags and MetalForms because I like the followers better (PowerMag followers can chew up an aluminum feed ramp).

September 30, 2005, 10:00 AM
wilson combat 47D only way to go

September 30, 2005, 10:35 AM
Another vote for Wilson Combat 7-rounder.

September 30, 2005, 10:49 AM
What everyone else said about Wilson 7 or 8 rounders goes ditto for me. The Tripp Cobra Mag is also a great product. I can also vouch for the comment on Wolff mag springs, these are a cheap fix for mag feeding problems, you can also order these direct from Wolff, since their customer service is excellent.

September 30, 2005, 10:49 AM
ACT-MAG, usually stamped with some other company name but always has ACT-MAG real small stamped in the metal. IMO, these are the best mags that money can buy. I have them stamped as Novak, Armscor, Nighthawk, etc but they are identical and function flawlessly.
$14.99 for 8 rounders at CDNN in Blue or Nickel (I've found them as low as $9.99 elsewhere). I use these mags in all my 1911's and my Sig P220 and have never had a mag related failure of any kind.

September 30, 2005, 11:17 AM
CMC mags have been flawless in my 1911's, as long as I only keep 7 rounds in them.

Springfield mags with dimpled followers have been fine.

Hi-Standard OEM mags have been fine.

Mec-Gars have not.

Tested on Sistema, Series 70 Colt, Springfield Mil-Spec, and customized Norinco, all with standard 16# recoil springs.

September 30, 2005, 01:05 PM
but why 7 rounders instead of 8?

September 30, 2005, 02:07 PM
Well, while I kept a couple of Wilson magazines for range-only usage, I personally don't prefer them for defensive-carry use anymore. I've found I'm not alone in this when discussing it with other folks, too.

I prefer Metalform/Wolff ... flat, dimpled follower & 11 lb Wolff spring.

I've been trying some Tripp Cobramags, and so far they appear to function decently with a variety of ammunition in a Colt XSE and an older steel Commander. I've heard that Tripp is going to be using another vendor to supply the mag bodies in the near future, so I'll wait and try some of those, as well.

I'm reserving my opinion on the ACT mags until I've had more time to test fire them in a couple of different pistols.

I've used more 1911-type magazines than I can remember over the years, always searching for the 'best one' to use in my various .45's. I actually had the best luck for a while with Vega mags, and that was while using the JHP's of the 70's in my Commander (including the 200gr Speer standard pressure load).

I dislike the folded-leaf followers as they appeared in the Shooting Star, Ruger & Colt magazines, just to name some of them. I noticed that while the current Ruger & Colt 8-rd magazines use the same follower, they each use a different spring, both in number of coils and minor variations in design of the springs. Ruger adopted a machined dimple in each magazine lip in order to help prevent displacement of the top round during recoil, and I was told that this was the result of more folks wanting to use the heavier recoiling +P ammunition.

While the technology and production methods seem to have been catching up to the improvements and bullet design changes in ammunition, it still seems that we keep seeing a well produced 7-rd magazine, with a properly designed follower and heavy duty spring, are still often offered as the best magazines to help insure reliable functioning with a wide variety of ammunition, in a wide variety of shooter's hands ... Surprise ...

HSMITH The Wilson mag is a great mag too, AFTER you put a quality spring in it. ;) The only thing different I'd offer is that they're an 'okay' magazine afterward, in 7-rd capacity (Govt/Comm length), with a heavier spring which is suitable for their follower (top coil shape) ... but the follower designs don't always seem to help prevent the last round from being displaced forward by recoil, especially if +P ammunition is used.

We may find out we're all attempting to "rediscover the wheel" as time passes ... to some extent, at least ... ;)

September 30, 2005, 05:51 PM
They work for me and my Colt.

September 30, 2005, 06:08 PM
I have 10 wilson 47D's. I bought six for the 2 1911's that are in my household. After using them for a while, I thought that they were so well made and performed so well that I bought 4 more. They are expensive for a 1911 magazine but well worth the money.

September 30, 2005, 11:42 PM
I've had magazine related failure to feeds with; new Wilson 47D 8x, CMC Powermag 10x and 8x (I really don't like that Devel follower,) Springfield 7x (these have been better than most,) and an assortment of Cheapos. A friend has loaned several Metalform 7x with the dimpled follower and spring upgrade, and I've had no mag related failures with them. I've got a CMC 10x tube with spring upgrade and dimpled follower (reduces capacity to 9x) that works and feels great. I swore by Wilsons and CMCs until I started swearing at them. YMMV.

September 30, 2005, 11:50 PM
Wilson 8rd mag, I need write no more!

October 1, 2005, 05:12 AM
In my NRM Colt, I have had no problem with the factory Colt, CMC Shooting Star and Power Mag, and Wilsons. Though there is just someting I don't like about the Wilson. Saw someone had mentioned the High Standard mags that Midway offered. These have worked very well in my Colt. They do have a good strong spring.

October 1, 2005, 08:53 AM
I'm new to this site as well as the 1911. I'm grateful for everyone's help. I did go to the range yesterday and put 100 rounds through the Chip McCormick 8rd mag that the range had sold me the other day. I used the MagTech ammo, and not a single problem this time. I'm not ready to blame the stock mag just yet. Maybe it was the particuilar box of Remingtons I was using or maybe the gun just needed a little shooting. But I'm getting a little less discouraged. Great feedback from everyone.

October 1, 2005, 11:04 AM
Chip McCormick 8 rounder or 10 rounder mags are ok.For hi-cap 1911's I use MecGar mags I've been using them for the past 8 years, the magazine works better if you clean them after you used it. ;) :) :cool:

October 1, 2005, 12:04 PM
*sigh* I'm about to give up on this question of magazine capacity...but in the interest of trying to put it in perspective...

The 1911 magazine was designed, developed, modified and corrected by
John Moses Browning...who, incidentally knew more about the gun than anybody alive today...and a team of engineers from Colt and the Army Ordnance Department. It was designed for a 7-round capacity, and the gun's sole intent was for war. Not bullseye competition...Not for playing games of "Let's Pretend"...and not even for civilian law enforcement. War.

Given that since it was going to war...and the fact that very often, one more round could possibly save a man's life...doesn't it stand to reason that if the gun COULD have been designed to hold 8-rounds and STILL remain reliable AND function would have BEEN designed for 8 rounds way way back in 1910 or 1911? Is it also reasonable to assume that it was probably attempted way way back in 1910 or 1911 and abandoned due to reliability issues...either long or short-term?

Remember that the gun was primarily designed with horse-mounted cavalry in mind. The cavalryman's plight is in having to reload the gun on the back of a frightened, bolting horse. One more round would have given the cavalryman one free magazine full for every 7 magazines he fired...which would increase his survival probability greatly. At the very least, it would have decreased his chances of being thrown from the back of his horse while trying to reload
his pistol and control that horse at the same time.

When you attempt to stuff 8 rounds into a space designed for 7, you have to give something up in order to accomplish that. In this case, it's magazine spring length/number of coils and follower length...which serves to keep the follower stable as the magazine empties its load.

There are some very good reasons for everything on the gun...including the 7-round magazine capacity...including the dimple on the follower and the 13-coil spring.

Think about it...

October 1, 2005, 01:35 PM
Wolff mags and Colt are my choice.

October 1, 2005, 08:18 PM
This is the mag. set-up I use in my Colt Commander:
Colt SS Factory mag. body
Pachmayr follower
Wolff Std. factory weight spring
Works for me. YMMV, Ray

October 1, 2005, 08:26 PM
I agree with the folks who like Wilson 7 rounders. I've been using them since the early 80's with no problems.

October 2, 2005, 12:15 PM
No complaints whatsoever with my CMC 10 rounder.

When you attempt to stuff 8 rounds into a space designed for 7, you have to give something up in order to accomplish that. Well duh. :rolleyes: That's why you don't try to fit them in the same space. I have never seen or used an 8 rounder that was NOT longer than the 7 rounder, and the 10 rounder is obviously longer.

My Series 70 MarkIV seems to like the CMCs just fine, and they are the smoothest loading mags I have ever owned, so I see little reason to pay the extra for Wilsons.

October 2, 2005, 12:44 PM
Well duh. That's why you don't try to fit them in the same space. I have never seen or used an 8 rounder that was NOT longer than the 7 rounder, and the 10 rounder is obviously longer.

CMC advertises their shooting star & match grade mags as standard length with 8 round capacity. Check out the link -

As I said in a previous post, I like CMC's but won't put 8 rounds in them because then they are to unreliable in my 1911's.

October 2, 2005, 01:55 PM
Yep, CMC 8s are the same size as 7s... The follower is the difference.

But I still don't believe that Browning, genious that he was, knew every little thing that could be done to tweek his design and rejected them all as being less than the ideal original and stuck to what he had as being superior. Shortsighted and arrogant to say so IMO.

For example - the given analogy of a cavalryman reloading on horseback - wouldn't that guy love to have an extended magazine well bevel added to his weapon? Oh, then he'd need a bumperpad to get it solidly seated. An obvious and easy improvement for those the gun was originally designed "for."


8s or 7s? I'm conducting my own experiments - I'll let ya know when they're concluded. Should take the next fifty years; or so I'm hoping... :D

Ala Dan
October 2, 2005, 02:18 PM
I've had 0 problems with my Springfield magazines, but I bought some
Wilson 47D's as extra's. Then again, I was given an eight round (and
a ten round) Chip McCormick "power mag" as well. All of 'em work flawlessly~ :D

Black Majik
October 2, 2005, 03:04 PM
I mostly prefer the factory Colt 7 rounders, but for 8 rounds, my Powermags get the job done.

Dave Markowitz
October 2, 2005, 03:28 PM
In my Springfield M1911A1, the OEM 7 rounder works fine, as do a couple of Chip McCormick 8 round Shooting Stars. I have one 10 round CMC Power Mag that runs flawlessly, while a second occasionally bobbles.

October 2, 2005, 05:25 PM
CMC advertises their shooting star & match grade mags as standard length with 8 round capacity. Fair enough. The one 8-rounder I own has an extension. But now that I have discovered the 10-spot, I doubt I will buy much else, (I like shooting in nice round numbers, and the extra ballast under the magazine well is not very noticeable.) Now if I could just find a mag pouch for CMC 10 rounders.

October 2, 2005, 06:18 PM

>>But I still don't believe that Browning, genious that he was, knew every little thing that could be done to tweek his design<<

Yeah...You're probably right. He and the Dream Team slapped it together in a couple weeks and proclaimed: "This is it!"


ken grant
October 2, 2005, 08:16 PM
Tuner knows of what he speaks. It has been proven to me many times!
I am kind of hard-headed and he & I have been over this issue a few times.
I found that the Devel type followers would work most of the time in full-sized 1911's but gave problems in any thing shorter. :banghead:
For a while,I kept the mags seperate as to which 1911 to shoot them in,but now I have changed the followers in all my mags to the flat with dimple. All my problems have gone away since I did this. :D

Zach S
October 2, 2005, 08:22 PM
Wilson 47s and 47OXs here. (well, 47CBs for my springer - its parkerized)

but why 7 rounders instead of 8?
Because 7 rounders work. Always. Wilson eight rounders were hit or miss in one pistol I had, so that turned me off of them. Also, when you pick up counting rounds out of a compact, you feel kinda stupid when you see four government model eight round magazines laying on the floor, all with one round left (what makes you feel even dumber is when you're shooting your G17, and try to stuff a wilson 47 in it after firing seven rounds - not that I've done that or anything;)).

October 2, 2005, 08:52 PM
I sure am glad that JMB, in his Infinite Wisdom, didn't design the 1911 with 5 rounds! I get 47-D's at Brownell's for $20. Just ordered another one. If you buy four of their AR mags, you get free shipping for your entire order.

October 2, 2005, 09:14 PM
Wilson 7 or 8 rounders have both worked fine in my Kimber.

October 2, 2005, 09:24 PM
Metalform/wolff +1

October 2, 2005, 10:12 PM
No no no Ken! Those modern-day entrepeneurs are sooooo much smarter than John Moses and all those short-sighted engineers from Colt and the Army Ordnance Department that he had at his disposal. Don't you know that? After seventy years, somebody jumped up and hollered:

"LOOKY! We can get 8 rounds to fit in that magazine! All we gotta do is cut two coils off the spring and shorten up the follower! I betcha nobody EVER thought of that before!" :rolleyes:

Well...if ya'll just gotta have an extra round...Git some! :D

October 2, 2005, 10:43 PM
I have limited experience, but FWIW 7-rounders have always worked for me, while 8-rounders have had very infrequent problems. That made me think. Do I want to shoot 7 and reload, or do I want to shoot 7, have #8 misfeed, clear the misfeed, and then reload? Like 1911Tuner and JMB, I now shoot 7-rounders.

October 2, 2005, 10:47 PM
Yep! It is amazing those cheap ol Springer Mags are worthless. If you guys don't need them I'm pretty sure Tuner will take'em, if he doesn't I will.

October 3, 2005, 05:50 AM
SACOLT...You betcha! I also like McCormick Shootin' Stars and Powermags.
I find one of'em down at the range once in a while where somebody has gotten disgusted and thrown'em downrange...mostly behind the berm.
I bring'em home, pull the springs and followers, toss'em in the can, and install
the good stuff. The Powermags' springs are generally pretty good, since they're Wolff +5% springs...unless they're worn out. I also remove that ridiculous slam pad from the Shooting Stars...The Powermags' pads are part of the removeable baseplate, but at least they're thin. :cool:

Wish I had a dime for every Jammin' Jenny that I've "fixed" by handin' the owner one of my old ugly beater mags. Hard for'em to accept that all their problems went away when they got away from the Super-Duper, Double Throwdown, trick, 8-round Wilson/McM/whateverthehell mag that's all the rage in the gunzines this month.

October 3, 2005, 09:09 PM
I like the Wilson 47D mags a lot also and they do have a warranty. I am thinking I would like to try out the Tripp mags sometime soon as well.

October 3, 2005, 11:36 PM
My Rock Island came with a Novak mag and I've found it to be very reliable. The only failure to feed was intentional as I was feeding it a mixed mag, holding it sideways, and limp-wristing it to try and make it malfunction. I succeded once.

October 4, 2005, 09:06 AM
Tuner, if you need an outlet for those basepads let me know. I use them on competition mags, keeps the magwell from biting me.........

October 4, 2005, 09:48 AM
USGI mags for my Springers...both Champion & "GI-45" model. Flat dimpled follower.....they work.

Kudos to 'Tuner for spotting the mag issue that I had a while back...weak spring. Seems that SA stuffed a 9mm mag spring in a .45mag.

October 4, 2005, 02:48 PM
HSMITH...Sorry mah fren. I toss'em...but you can get the same pads from Metalform. That's who makes the McM Shooting Stars. I'm pretty sure you can get'em in different colors too. Check the website. Call'em up. Punch in "4" when the automated thing answers, and ask for Ginny. She'll fix ya up.

October 4, 2005, 05:03 PM
Base Pads
HSMITH...Sorry mah fren. I toss'em

Gosh, Tuner... howcome you no like? I've had about 5 times where a fresh mag just dropped free or wouldn't chamber a round... because I had failed to seat it properly. 100% my fault. :p

This was at the range where I was under no stress or pressure at all. Not doing 'tactical reloads' or any of that stuff... just reloading the piece.

It never happened a lot, considering how many years I've been firing .45's or how many rounds I've burnt up. But enough to catch my attention. With a modest basepad I don't have that problem, ever... and I kinda like the feeling of giving it a lil shove with the heel of my hand and KNOWING it snapped in place. Talking a thin pad here... not one of those Rube Goldberg deals that add close to an inch to the length of the butt. :)

What's not to like?


October 4, 2005, 10:30 PM
I do not fire my 1911 45's as often as my other guns due mostly to the cost of ammo but I can say that I have not had a jam since going to Wilson magazines.

:) :) :) :)

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