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In Reversal, Army Bans High-Performance Rifle Mags

Discussion in 'Gear & Accessories' started by EMP9596, May 26, 2012.

  1. EMP9596

    EMP9596 Two Trees West of Camas, WA. Active Member

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    In Reversal, Army Bans High-Performance Rifle Mags | Military.com

    The Army has ordered that soldiers may use only government-issued magazines with their M4 carbines, a move that effectively bans one of the most dependable and widely used commercial-made magazines on today’s battlefield.

    The past decade of war has spawned a wave of innovation in the commercial soldier weapons and equipment market. As a result, trigger-pullers in the Army, Marines and various service special operations communities now go to war armed with commercially designed kit that’s been tested under the most extreme combat conditions.

    Near the top of such advancements is the PMAG polymer M4 magazine, introduced by Magpul Industries Corp. in 2007. Its rugged design has made it as one of the top performers in the small-arms accessory arena, according to combat veterans who credit the PMAG with drastically improving the reliability of the M4.

    Despite the success of the PMAG, Army officials from the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command issued a “safety of use message” in April that placed it, and all other polymer magazines, on an unauthorized list.

    The message did not single out PMAGs, but instead authorizes only the use of Army-issued aluminum magazines. The message offers little explanation for the new policy except to state that “Units are only authorized to use the Army-authorized magazines listed in the technical manuals.” Nor does it say what Army units should now do with the millions of dollars’ worth of PMAGs they’ve purchased over the years.



    Magpul officials have been reluctant to comment on the issue. Robert Vidrine, vice president of marketing and sales, said the company found out about TACOM’s message only after it was released to the field.

    The decision has left combat troops puzzled, since the PMAG has an Army-approved national stock number, which allows units to order them through the Army supply system.

    “This just follows a long line of the Army, and military in general, not listening to the troops about equipment and weaponry,” said one Army infantryman serving in Southwest Afghanistan, who asked not to be identified.

    “The PMAG is a great product … lightweight and durable. I have seen numerous special ops teams from all services pass through here, and they all use PMAGs. Also, a large amount of Marine infantry here use PMAGS, including their Force Recon elements.”

    TACOM officials said the message was issued because of “numerous reports that Army units are using unauthorized magazines,” TACOM spokesman Eric Emerton said in a written response to questions from Military.com. Emerton added that only “authorized NSNs have ever been included in the technical manuals. Just because an item has an NSN, does not mean the Army is an authorized user.”

    This seems to be a complete policy reversal, since PMAGs are standard issue with the Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment and they have been routinely issued to infantry units before war-zone deployments.

    Soldiers from B Troop, 3rd Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, had been issued PMAGs before deploying to Afghanistan in 2009. On Oct. 3 of that year, they fought off a bold enemy attack on Combat Outpost Keating that lasted for more than six hours and left eight Americans dead. Some soldiers fired up to 40 PMAGs from their M4s without a single stoppage.

    Militay.com asked TACOM officials if the Army had discovered any problems with PMAGs that would warrant the ban on their use. TACOM officials would not answer the question and instead passed it off to Program Executive Office Soldier on Thursday evening before the four-day Memorial Day weekend.

    TACOM’s message authorizes soldiers to use the Army’s improved magazine, which PEO Soldier developed after the M4 finished last against three other carbines in a 2007 reliability test. The “dust test” revealed that 27 percent of the M4’s stoppages were magazine related.

    The improved magazine uses a redesigned “follower,” the part that sits on the magazine’s internal spring and feeds the rounds into the M4’s upper receiver. The new tan-colored follower features an extended rear leg and modified bullet protrusion for improved round stacking and orientation. The self-leveling/anti-tilt follower reduces the risk of magazine-related stoppages by more than 50 percent compared to the older magazine variants, PEO Soldier officials maintain. Soldiers are also authorized to use Army magazines with the older, green follower until they are all replaced, the message states.

    Military.com asked the Army if the improved magazine can outperform the PMAG, but a response wasn’t received by press time.

    The same infantryman serving in Southwest Afghanistan had this to say about the new and improved magazine:

    “Like any magazine, they work great when they are brand new and haven’t been drug through the dirt and mud. I haven’t noticed much of a difference between these tan followers and the older green ones. After some time training up for the 'Stan, the same issues started to occur: double feeds, rounds not feeding correctly so on and so on. While it seems to occur about half as often, it’s still not a great solution.

    “The magazines still get bent at the opening and are still prone to getting crushed in the middle. I haven’t seen any issues like this with the PMAG due to the polymer casing. I have seen an empty PMAG get run over by a MaxPro [vehicle] and operated flawlessly later that week when we tested it at the range. Last time I saw this happen to a standard issue magazine, it was scrap metal after that.”
     
  2. iusmc2002

    iusmc2002 Colville, WA Active Member

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    Smells like some stinky political bullbubblegume. Someone's palm wasn't getting greased enough because the aluminum mags were less popular with the warriors, so they weren't ruining as many, thereby requiring them to be replaced. So someone leaned on the top brass, or greased THEIR palm, and TA-DA! we have less reliable mags being forced on troops......
     
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  3. orygun

    orygun West Linn Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Kinda seems that way, huh?
     
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  4. SIG383

    SIG383 Graham, WA Well-Known Member

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    This kind of crap pisses me off!!! When I was over in the sand last time, I replaced all my GI mags with PMAGs due to malfunctions on a regular basis. Another part that makes the metal mags suck is the fact that they become little fry pans that burn the crap out of your hand if you have to grab them with bare hands! The polymer gets a bit toasty, but not to the point of blistering your hand...I really hate when the bureaucratic B.S. gets in the way of getting us the equipment that actually works!
     
  5. jimwsea

    jimwsea Vancouver, Washington state Active Member

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    What corporation has the contract for the metal mags?

    If you want to get rid of your competition, get the government to mandate use of your product. Capitalism...not!
     
    retiredgal and (deleted member) like this.
  6. SIG383

    SIG383 Graham, WA Well-Known Member

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    There are several contracts out for the metal mags
     
  7. accessbob

    accessbob Molalla, OR 2A Supporter

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    A bunch of crud which can cost lives. It never fails. It seems that bureaucracy exists to ensure that someone's pockets are lined regardless of how something works for the actual soldier in the field. It makes me wanna puke.
     
  8. EMP9596

    EMP9596 Two Trees West of Camas, WA. Active Member

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    We used to pack a lot of full mags + extra bandoleers(VN). The old steel AR ones could be noisey as hell if you did not pack them right in your ruck. I always never charged them with more than 18 to keep them hopefully reliable. The PMAGs would of been so much better back then if they existed. Lighter, less noise, tough, a cover to help keep em clean and round pressure off the feed lips and a lot easier to clean.
    We have three army active dutys in the family at present. Two in Afganistan and one somewhere in Africa. I am waiting for a response from them.
     
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  9. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    This just really smacks of someone getting, or not getting paid off.
     
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  10. Scrammer

    Scrammer SW Washington Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Some congresscritter's favorite little donor isn't getting his or her piece of the golden pie :grenade:
     
  11. Ben Beckerich

    Ben Beckerich NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Everyone write your congressmen.
     
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  12. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    i will be calling my congressman, and senators. This is a deadly mistake.
     
  13. billstaf

    billstaf Portland, Oregon Active Member

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    If some of the Army units are looking to dump their PMAGS, I volunteer to take about 100 or so off their hands. I only have three and I would like some more. I promise not to charge anything for providing this service to the Army.
     
  14. EMP9596

    EMP9596 Two Trees West of Camas, WA. Active Member

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    Just an FYI... A lot of the troops where it is permissible buy some of their own personal preferred gear before they deploy. So this can be a possible monetary loss to them.
     
  15. Godfather911

    Godfather911 Springfield, OR. Member

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    COLT probably threw a fit on shorten orders of mag's even though it's a contract or better yet, some Government Warehouse clerk was complaining about an over abundance of "issue" sitting and holding up "needed" space. "combat loss" is calculated and when it's not reached and money is getting spent,or wasted (laugh at that since they like to spend 40grand on a toliet lid) some senator is gonna question why..look what happened when families where buying body armor for their deployed loved ones, commands werent allowing troops to wear them because they weren't "issue". Excuse,"aren't tested per military/government standards/specs." Even though the "out of pocket" armor blew the issue miles away....alot of troops have to be killed in order for Congress to REALLY listen,sad...
     
  16. JackThompson

    JackThompson Valley of the Demons Well-Known Member

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    There's not enough money in the world to offset screwing your troops like that.

    How can people be so stupid/greedy???

    If the metal mag company doesn't like losing to the PMAG manufacturer, then clone the thing. Don't waste lives out of laziness and spite.
     
  17. EMP9596

    EMP9596 Two Trees West of Camas, WA. Active Member

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    Please be advised... You can subscribe to Military.com without being a member of the Armed Forces.

    MORE: http://kitup.military.com/2012/05/army-stands-ban-unathorized-pmags.html

    Ok so I have spent the last week trying to find out why Army officials at TACOM would ban soldiers from using PMAGs in the warzone. I posted a story that explores the issue this morning on Military.com, but I don’t think this issue is over yet.

    I’m not surprised that the Army wants everyone to use its Improved Magazine with the tan follower that’s supposed to cut down on stoppages in the M4. You have to give Army weapons officials credit for finally recognizing in late 2007 that the magazines with the green follower were poorly designed.

    It was the way the Army went about improving the magazine that seemed a little questionable. Weapons officials quickly recognized that Magpul Industries Corp. was onto something with its new PMAG. But instead of testing Magpul’s polymer design, the Army tried unsuccessfully to develop its own polymer magazine, my sources tell me.


    The Army didn’t want to adopt the PMAG because acquisition officials wanted to own the technical data rights, a condition Magpul wasn’t likely to agree to, sources say.

    So the Army settled on improving the follower — which has a strong resemblance to Magpul’s original design. When fielding began in 2009, Army weapons officials maintained that the new design would decrease stoppages by 50 percent, but they would never really discuss the testing process. It’s also unclear how the new mags compared to the PMAG’s performance. That didn’t really matter, because units were free to continue using PMAGs which had an Army-approved national stock number.

    That all changed, however, in April when TACOM released its Safety of Use message that authorized only two NSNs for use with the M4 — the improved magazine with the tan follower and the older magazine with the green follower.

    Apparently, the NSN issued for the PMAG was never really authorized, TACOM spokesman Eric Emerton said in a written response to questions from Military.com.

    “Units are only authorized to use the Army-authorized magazines listed in the technical manuals,” he said. Emerton added that only “authorized NSNs have ever been included in the technical manuals. Just because an item has an NSN, does not mean the Army is an authorized user.”

    Huh???? That must be why PMAGs are standard issue to special operations units such as the 75th Ranger Regiment — those boys are clearly confused.

    I have asked the Army if it has any proof that the service’s new magazine can outperform or even equal the PMAG’s performance, but I am still waiting for an answer.

    What is really strange about this is that Magpul officials said they don’t want to talk about the issue. It could be that the company is hoping the Army will reverse its decision. Or maybe there’s something behind the Army’s abrupt decision to ban all polymer magazines that hasn’t yet surfaced.



    Read more: http://kitup.military.com/2012/05/army-stands-ban-unathorized-pmags.html#ixzz1w8uoPAgJ
    Kit Up!
     
  18. ArBrnSnpr

    ArBrnSnpr PNW Active Member

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    My guess is this wont stop the end user from using PMAGs, it will simply affect what Joe is issued before he deploys. I know I was issued tons of crap before deployment, but ended up using a decent amount of my own gear and no one said anything about it. As an Infantry squad leader I can tell you that I will not be the "pmag-police" and if my guys want to use PMAGs it'll take more than this for me to stop them.
     
  19. SONofSaw

    SONofSaw Marion County New Member

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    Has anyone ever heard of cerebus and dyn corp? This company single handed makes up most of the US military. From Troop transport, troop clothing, clothing washing. They also own DPMS panther, Bushmaster and multiple Ammunition manufacturing facilities. The shares include GM (what most of the military and government uses) chrysler, some big grocery chains etc etc. If you want to ruin your day then educate yourslef on cerebus and its holdings. Since WWII dyncorp has handled troop transport for the US military. As a matter of fact they own quite a bit of planes and the infrastructure. The USAF just has contracts to take care of it. Our military is ran by inside trading and outside influence. Seems funny that cerebus purchased bushmaster, dpms arms and made some other movements right before the US went back in with a HARD push to afghanistan in 2007. They also own first student America, Canada and Europe. Don't know what first student is? Look at every yellow bus driving your kids to school. In EVERY CITY. A monopoly if I ever saw one.

    Think about it Cerebus own our Troop transport and management infrastructure for our military. The ammunition facilities, the gun making facilities, vehicle manufacturing facilities etc. They also handle all of our child transport from a young age. Ever wonder who pushed for you to basically be made to use the school bus? Remember when it was no longer allowed for kids to walk to school for safety reasons? Cerebus gets paid for every stop if kids are picked up or not. Also cerebus purchased Blue bird and another american bus manufacturing company.

    A 300 billion dollar year company you have never heard of. Worried about some PMAGS? Just the dust on the bubblegum my friends.
     
  20. DOA

    DOA Aloha, OR -185th & TV Hwy Active Member

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    Thank you for the info:thumbup:
     
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