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G3 Magazines < Aluminum VS Steel >

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Boba Debt, Mar 26, 2011.

  1. Boba Debt

    Boba Debt Well-Known Member

    What are the pros and cons of Aluminum vs Steel G3 magazines?
  2. Ian

    Ian Well-Known Member

    Aluminum is lighter, and cheaper right now. Steel is stronger and more durable.
  3. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    AFAIK - steel magazines are Spanish CETME mags and aluminum mags are German G3 mags. The G3 mags are lighter and a little more fragile, while the CETME magazines are heavier and rust but may be a little more robust.

    I trend towards the G3 mags, simply because they are historically a lot less expensive and I've not had any reliability/durability issues with them.
  4. nalioth

    nalioth Well-Known Member

    CETME mags are not G3 mags. CETME mags have always been steel, and are not reliably interchangeable with the G3 in the real world (where actual factory-produced battle rifles live). They are different in that they have a slight curvature to them, which G3 mags do not have. They also have a slightly different locking system.

    CETME magazine:

    H&K (and licensees) produced both aluminum and steel G3 mags for their various customers. They are pretty much the same pattern, just different metals.

    H&K G3 aluminum magazine:

    H&K G3 steel magazine:

    FREERANGETIME! Well-Known Member

    Good Info

    The first two responses answered all pros and cons accurately (imo) the only thing I can add is that in regards to the Cetme, both mag types functioned equally reliably in my rifle. The steel mags are in my understanding, Cetme mags usually available for $10 or less, 5 round mags, making this type rifle legal to hunt with and a lot easier to shoot from the bench, are also available.
    The aluminum mags are typically German milsurp, usually available for $1 or less, I have seen them as inexpensive as $50 per 100. My personal preferance is for the aluminum, they are much lighter and do not rust.
    As a side note, if you are considering an optic for your rifle, there are other options besides the Stanag style mounts/rings that are every bit as stable, and far less expensive, including picatinny options, as much as I liked my Cetme, I appreciated it even more after I mounted a scope on it.
  6. Onmilo

    Onmilo Well-Known Member

    Even though they are heavier, I still prefer steel G3 magazines to the aluminum ones.
    Properly cared for, steel G3 magazines will last darned near forever, even the springs are heavy duty.
  7. Hardware

    Hardware Well-Known Member

    I buy the steel magazines for long term reliability, the aluminum magazines for practice. Although it hasn't happened to me, I've heard talk that the aluminum magazines have a useful life as the feed lips will bend.
  8. Wildbillz

    Wildbillz Well-Known Member

    The Aluminum ones are cheap and all over the place. If you have a H&K type rifle, no reson not to have a hundred or so of them on hand. They only take up a small space stored out in the garage, if one brakes you can toss it in the recycle bin and replace it from stock. They also make good trading stock.

    Most of the steel ones I see are a bit more worn them most of the aluminum ones. But they are hell for stout mags. I plan on getting 10 or so of them and having them refinished to make them look good (if I ever get a good G3 type rifle). :cool:

    Just my out look on it.
  9. 451 Detonics

    451 Detonics Well-Known Member

    My CEMTE does not like the HK mags at all, it is an older one, not one of the current CIA guns. Fortunately I found a good source of mags at 9 bucks apiece for it and bought plenty.

    I would buy the steel mags as well for the HK, they will outlast the aluminum. With steel available for as little as 104 magazine for $175.00 buying the aluminum doesn't really save you much.
  10. Boba Debt

    Boba Debt Well-Known Member

    Looks like I'm going with the aluminum mags

  11. S.W.G.

    S.W.G. Well-Known Member


    They're $0.97 a piece.

    If you have a defective one, or one wears out, chuck it in your scrap metal bin and grab another.

    Buy a hundred of them and just use them for the rest of your life. Give some out as party favors.
  12. Z-Michigan

    Z-Michigan Well-Known Member

    Buy some of each kind. When I had a PTR I greatly preferred the aluminum for ordinary use, as the steel mags are heavy as bricks. But I expect the steel is more durable. Both are still relatively cheap.
  13. Boba Debt

    Boba Debt Well-Known Member

    I just ordered 55 aluminum mags for less then $75 shipped :)

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