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Any speculation on why Baer provides 7-round mags instead of 8 rounders with the TR Special?
 

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This was per Clint Smith's specifications. Smith has stated that he believes 7 round mags to have a reliability edge over 8 round mags. That being said, both my TR Specials came from Baer with 8 round mags. I run 7 round Wilson Combat mags in mine. One less round for a possible reliability edge is a no-brainer, I know how to change a mag.

[This message has been edited by A Johnston (edited 12-04-2001).]
 

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Mine shipped with three 7 round Baer mags. I would agree that reliability is more important than an extra round, but I've never had a magazine-related failure with the 8-round Wilson Combat mags, nor do I know anybody who has. I'd also note that several of the instructors at the Ranch carry 8-round Wilsons as well. I'd be interested in hearing from anybody who has had problems with those mags. Maybe this thread should move to the "Magazine" forum...

Anyway, thanks for the info. That answered my question.
 

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In many thousands of rounds of shooting I have had only 1 malfunction I can definitely say was caused by an 8 round mag. Are 7 round mags more reliable.... on a long enough time line maybe. From a design standpoint I just like the 7 round follower more than the 8.
 

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A Johnston pegged the reason. I also carry 7's, but in all honesty, the only Baer mag I've ever had trouble with was a 7 (Probably damaged in shipping, but Baer replaced anyway). Never any troubles with any other of their 7's or 8's.
 

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How is it that Wilson's 8rd mags got such a reputation for reliability if 7 rounder's are more reliable? I think it's nothing more than personal opinion. If your mags work in your gun, they are reliable. Period.
 

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Originally posted by JohnnyO:
If your mags work in your gun, they are reliable. Period.
You're right, if your mags work in your gun they ARE reliable. Like I said before, on a long enough time line 7 round mags might be more reliable.
 

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Everyone

A similar question was posted in the magazine section of this forum. The reason Clint Smith recommends 7 round magazines over 8 round magazines is not that 8 round magazines will not feed ammo into the barrel reliably. The reason is 7 round mags will seat in the pistol more reliably, so you do not have to practice as many failure drills.

The reason for this is an 8 round magazine uses a different spring and follower to get that extra round inside. In some cases that last round takes all of the give left in the spring, so it will not compress when the bullet is pressed against the underside of the slide. This means that the magazine can't be inserted in the pistol far enough for the mag release to catch the notch and hold it in place. Sometimes it does not matter how hard you smack the magazine it will not seat. 7 round magazines have enough give left in the spring that this is usually not a problem.

Clint Smith probably sees this situation at least once in every class at Thunder Ranch. So that is why he makes a point of making the recomendation.

Str8_Shot
 

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In addition to the problem STR8_Shot described, and for much the same reason, with fully loaded 8 round magazine, the lack of "give" in the follower spring can be hard on the magazine catch.

When I started using 8 round magazines in my Colt a couple of years ago, I noticed no problems at first, but shortly afterward I started having feed problems, and within a year's time I had broken not only the original 25-year-old factory magazine catch, but a new Wilson mag catch as well. I went back to using 7 round magazines, and 8 round magazines loaded with only 7 rounds, and have had no trouble with either feed reliability or exceesive wear on the magazine catch with my Colt or my Springfield since.
 

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Like above post I also use 8 round magazines loaded w/ 7 rounds. This works for me...
DITTO

Also, after a cleaning or function check, I can
1)add the eighth round,
2)insert magazine, and release slide.
3)Next, a simple press check ensures the chamber has been loaded. The magazine is now at my prefered capacity to reduce spring wear(7+1).

It just seems easier than;
1)inserting the magazine of a seven rounder,
2)releasing the slide to chamber,
3)removing magazine to load back to 7,
4)re-inserting magazine(7+1).

I have never had any problems with my 8 Chip McCormick 8-rounders or factory Kimber 8s. Tacticly, I beieve the 7-rounders are more sound though. I think the 8 round followers are designed for more flex, this is what allows the extra round. I'm not sure if this is true or not. But one would think a more solid, less flexing follower would be more reliable over time.

Scouts Out!
 

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KGN said:
Tacticly, I beieve the 7-rounders are more sound though. I think the 8 round followers are designed for more flex, this is what allows the extra round. I'm not sure if this is true or not. But one would think a more solid, less flexing follower would be more reliable over time.
Well like I said before, the 7 round follower is more reliable given a long enough time line but not because the 8 round follower 'flexes' to accommodate the extra round. There is a distinct design difference between 7 and 8 round followers. The 8 round follower does without the long front follower leg the 7 rounder uses. Additionally the rear leg of the 8 rounder may be shorter that that of the 7 round follower but I would have to double check. With out the long leg in the front the 8 round follower stands the chance of 'dipping' down in the front as it travels up the magazine body. How much of a chance, well on a long enough time line.....
 

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magazines

While at Thunder Ranch last year I experienced some 8 round Wilson mags popping out with two or three rounds left, causing a malfunction. My TRS was still new and had just loosened up. Clint said to drop out a round and use just 7. This works. I also had some McCormick 8 round mags and they ran fine so I finished out the week using the 8 round McCormicks with 8 rounds and had no further problems. The Baer mags worked fine, too. It is in the mag spring where the problem occurs. I keep my mags all numbered and run them out regularly but always keep them full. I also keep track of the ones that have caused a problem and use them just for the range. It comes down to 7 or 8 rounds plus one up, of course. I think Clint carries a 7 round mag but if you follow his thinking, you know how to change a mag when you run dry. So it makes no difference - 7 or 8. :)
 

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Eight round mags

When I got my first Baer in 1994 I bought 2 Wilson 8 round magazines for it. They worked fine for about 2 months then I started having last round ftf's. I guess the spring weakened to the point of not being able to push that last round up fast enough for the slide to pick it up. I bought a couple of Wilson 7 round spring & follower kits & converted them to 7 rounders. I'm still using those mags now & have never had another problem. The only other 8 rounders that I have are CMC Shooting Stars & I only use them at the range. Why take a chance with a carry gun?
 

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samlitz wrote:

While at Thunder Ranch last year I experienced some 8 round Wilson mags popping out with two or three rounds left, causing a malfunction. My TRS was still new and had just loosened up. Clint said to drop out a round and use just 7. This works.
I find this curious. I would have thought that, if there was going to be a problem with an 8-round mag, that could be resolved by simply down-loading the mag, the problem would show up on the first shot. After the first shot, you are essentially working with a down-loaded mag. Apparently it is more involved than that.
 

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I've had both an 8 Wilson and two 8 round Colt mags using the "Shooting Star" follower wear out over time and become unreliable. The springs become too weak with prolonged used. Admittedly, the Wilson was one of the older ones that did not use the extra power springs that's advertised now.

Anyway, I've got about 8 or 9 extremely reliable 7 rounders and I'm perfectly happy with that. Not one failure in the last 9 years related to the magazine.
 
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