Is this M1 carbine 30-round mag real or fake?


August 22, 2010, 01:21 PM
Bought this for $20 at a gun show, so no big loss either way, but I'm curious what the consensus is. The URL I've included below seems to indicate that it's Taiwanese, but that appears to be one person's opinion, so not sure if it's correct.


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August 22, 2010, 01:23 PM
I don't think the military used 30 rounders. But, If it runs, it's right .

Larry Ashcraft
August 22, 2010, 01:27 PM
I don't think the military used 30 rounders.
I think they did. A good friend carried an M2 in Vietnam, and he said the thirty rounders weren't reliable, so he used the fifteens.

I bought some new in wrapper Winchester mags in Tulsa about five years ago for $15 each.

Moving this to rifles.

August 22, 2010, 01:28 PM
The M2 designation was never used by a military on any magazines. If it works, you're golden. Make sure that you have the M2 mag catch, though. The extra weight of fully-loaded 30 round mags will quickly wear on a standard mag catch.

The 30 round magazine was originally designed for the M2 Carbine, and was issued from the first release of the Carbines, late in WWII. They were used again in Korea, and also in Vietnam.

The 15 round magazines were original to the M1 carbine. They were identified in many cases by the manufacturers stamp.:)

August 22, 2010, 01:39 PM
Yes, 30-round carbine mags were standard GI issue after the M2 carbine was issued late 1944 in WWII. They were used in both M1 and M2 carbines after enough became available. My experiance is they are just as reliable as the 15 round mags as long as your gun has the M2 mag catch up-grade.

Don't recall ever seeing a GI mag stamped with M2 on it though.

My old GI issue 30-round mags are marked either SEY (Seymour Products) or UN (National Postal Meter) upside down near the hole in the bottom of the mag body.

Your M2 marked mag was sold Tony Scherer commercially, in the 1970s/80s.


August 22, 2010, 01:57 PM
Thanks. What is the "M2 mag catch upgrade," where can I get it, and how easy is it to install? And once installed, I assume I can still use 15-round mags as well, right?

August 22, 2010, 02:06 PM
Look at your mag catch.

If it has an underlined M it has the Type IV catch with an extra support leg for 30-round mags.

Most all of them had been arsenal up-graded before they were released on the surplus market after the Korean war.


Lee Roder
August 22, 2010, 02:07 PM
the 30 round mag has an "extra" lug on the left side, making 3 places for the type 4 magazine catch to hook the magazine (nstead of only 2 places at the rear of the mag). replacement is as easy as using a pick (or pocket knife) to pull back the spring holding the catch in the trigger housing. they are about $2 each at reese surplus. it works just fine with standard 15 round mags (2 lugs) too.

t4 mag catches may not be marked _M_. the history of mag catch markings can be found here

August 22, 2010, 02:21 PM
RC - Your link is not working; I would need the entire URL (not just dots) to find it. I have two lugs on the mag catch and it says "M" with no underline but the small letters "WA" under the "M," so I am thinking it's not a Type 2. BTW my 30-round mag also just has two nubs on it, like a 15-rounder. If someone has a photo of a Type 2 mag catch I can check for sure. Thank again.

August 22, 2010, 02:28 PM
Well, the link worked when I tested it.
But now it doesn't.

They have some kind of image protection scheme in place.

Try this:


Lee Roder
August 22, 2010, 02:37 PM
here's a good picture of the extra lug for the catch's arm:

August 22, 2010, 02:37 PM
The 30 round mags I have used work well.

August 22, 2010, 04:07 PM
OK, thanks all. Now we're getting somewhere. My mag looks like the picture above, but my mag release is not a Type 2 - doesn't have that support for the nub on the side of the 30-round mag. So I will need to replace it. Will try Reese as advised above. One last question -- once I install this, I can still use 15-rounders as well, right? Just want to be sure. Thanks again to all.

August 22, 2010, 04:12 PM
Yes, it will work with any mag as long as the mag is made to mil-spec.

And your old-style mag catch will also probably work with 30-round mags just fine.

The problem the new catch addressed was with M2 full-auto fire shaking the snot out of the long mag.
Not so much a problem with a semi-auto M1.


August 22, 2010, 04:17 PM
Taiwan and Korea made these. I have 2 Korean 30 rounders that sort of work. The USGI 15 rounders I have are flawless.

M2 Carbine
August 22, 2010, 04:55 PM
Just about all the 30 round mags I've used are unreliable full auto.
Sometimes they are pretty reliable semi auto.

I've never paid much attention to the markings on the mags, they either work or don't.
There is also some difference in individual rifles. Some feed better than others.

August 22, 2010, 07:09 PM
What is the general concensus on the recent Korean made mags, both 15's and 30's? So far, they both have been working fine in my semi-auto GI carbines.

August 22, 2010, 07:43 PM
The new Korean 30 & 15 round mags seem to be among the better aftermarket carbine mags.
And as previous posters say, get the M-2 Carbine mag catch; when I first started using 30s I didn't have it and found out it REALLY helps matters.

And yes, the 30 rounders came about when the select fire M-2 was developed. They weren't as reliable in full auto as the firearm was not originally intended to take curved mags. The .30 Carbine round has a slight taper to it and with a 15 rnd. it doesn't matter so they made them straight. The 30 mag had to be a compromise to accomodate the type of cartridge. In most M-1 carbs they work OK as long as they're in good shape but sometimes that curved mag caused a problem when the follower passed the junction between the curved part and the straight part.
I also agree I don't think originals were marked "M2."

August 22, 2010, 09:15 PM
While the M2 mag catch is nice to have, it is not a necessity to use 30 round mags. I use 30 round mags exclusively with my Carbine without a M2 mag catch.


August 22, 2010, 09:29 PM
My 30 round mag is stamped M2--it works well in my Iver Johnson. (

15 rounder in the photo........................

August 24, 2010, 05:15 PM
There are some very good sites on the web that detail the issues with identifying G.I. 30 rounders. There are LOTS of aftermarkets an copies. It is not an easy task to ID all the types. G.I. contract mags (SEY & UN) are extremely hard to lay your hands on and they will be at a premium, price wise. I think last one I saw was around $50.00! The last thing I read was saying that even if you have a commercial 30 rounder, it usually will improve reliability if you replace with G.I. made 30 round springs,. I guess most of the aftermarket springs are made of inferior or thinner material.

I will say that I do like the new 30 rounders coming out of Korea. They are the ones in a brown sealed bag that looks somewhat "G.I" and they have a glass black finish, not a blued finish. Mine have proven to be pretty reliable. I think I paid 20 or 25 bucks each.

Maj Dad
August 24, 2010, 11:58 PM
You can get the Korean 30 rd from CDNN for $14.99. I bought one a year or so ago at a gun show for $20 & it worked so well I bought a couple more from CDNN. I have a dozen or so GI 30s, and the ROKs are just as good; having said that, I have occasional FTFeeds with all of them and almost never with the 15s. I have found that holding the 30 rd mag like a pistol grip and keeping it pushed forward helps with the feeding issues. I used to blast hundreds of rounds of lead reloads & while they may have contributed to the overall situation, holding the mag forward was effective in almost eliminating the problem.

August 25, 2010, 12:08 AM
Just checked my carbine. It doesn't match any of catches shown in post #8. Mine has "CO" above an "M"...the M is not underlined. I have four 30 round mags from the Vietnam era. Two are weld tacked together. They are kind of heavy.


August 26, 2010, 10:37 AM
What is the general concensus on the recent Korean made mags, both 15's and 30's? So far, they both have been working fine in my semi-auto GI carbines.

I have several 15's. They work very well and would recommend them to anyone. The floorplates on a few seemed to move a bit though, but has not affected loading or operation at all.

They do NOT work well in one of my Carbines, but I blame the magazine catch. You have to POUND them in for them to lock in place; I just got a Type IV for it, going to see if it helps at all.

August 26, 2010, 05:02 PM
What is the general concensus on the recent Korean made mags, both 15's and 30's? So far, they both have been working fine in my semi-auto GI carbines.
The new 30-rounders from Korea have been flawless for me so far in 2 carbines. They seem to be very high quality.

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