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Old 04-11-2018, 05:05 AM
mikem mikem is online now
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Default S&W magazines question

Hi,

Does S&W manufacture its own magazines or does another company produce the magazines S&W sells with their semi-autos?
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Old 04-11-2018, 05:22 AM
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A lot of people say that Mec-Gar makes 'em. Mec-Gar doesn't sell any M&P mags under their own name, so maybe they have an agreement.

Last edited by Cheapskait; 04-11-2018 at 11:41 AM. Reason: D'OH! Typo, left off the "n't" on the "doesn't" for some reason
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Old 04-11-2018, 10:21 AM
Saudade Saudade is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheapskait View Post
A lot of people say that Mec-Gar makes 'em. Mec-Gar does sell any M&P mags under their own name, so maybe they have an agreement.
Where do you see Mecgar branded mags for the M&P? The Mecgar site doesn't list any.
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Old 04-11-2018, 11:42 AM
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Where do you see Mecgar branded mags for the M&P? The Mecgar site doesn't list any.
Sorry! I didn't proofread very well.
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Old 04-11-2018, 12:16 PM
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A lot of OEM magazines of many marked brands are made by MECGAR under exclusive contract, and sold only through the OEM.
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Old 04-11-2018, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by OKFC05 View Post
A lot of OEM magazines of many marked brands are made by MECGAR under exclusive contract, and sold only through the OEM.
So now it's "a lot" of pistol manufacturers have their mags made by Mec-Gar.You seem very certain. Please name just a few of the many.

I have been told the same thing again and again over many years. But no one has ever been able name a single company which has its "OEM" mags manufactured by a different company.

If this is even true, I don't understand the big hush hush deal.

Do people think Mercedes Benz manufactures all its parts?

Last edited by mikem; 04-11-2018 at 01:51 PM.
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Old 04-11-2018, 01:54 PM
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No hush hush deal, MecGar has been the OEM for most Smith and Wesson magazines for many, many years

The OEM magazines are clearly on display in MecGar's booth at the annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade show.

Are you looking for other OEMs?

Checkmate manufactures OEM magazines for Beretta and SIG,
OKay was an OEM Supplier to Colt
Shooting Star was also a Colt OEM supplier
MetalForm manufactures OEM 1911 magazines for lots of companies. Detonics and Colt come to mind

There are lots more examples

Last edited by colt_saa; 04-11-2018 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 04-11-2018, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by colt_saa View Post
No hush hush deal, MecGar has been the OEM for most Smith and Wesson magazines for many, many years

The OEM magazines are clearly on display in MecGar's booth at the annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade show.

Are you looking for other OEMs?

Checkmate manufactures OEM magazines for Beretta and SIG,
OKay was an OEM Supplier to Colt
Shooting Star was also a Colt OEM supplier
MetalForm manufactures OEM 1911 magazines for lots of companies. Detonics and Colt come to mind

There are lots more examples
Sounds definitive.

Thank you.
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Old 04-11-2018, 02:45 PM
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Gun makers aren't normally in any particular hurry to identify their vendors. Those vendors could change at any time, anyway, and there may be more than one vendor for any specific part or assembly, as well.

I've seldom heard an armorer ask about what vendor makes what parts in any of the armorer classes I've attended over the years, and the few times someone has asked, it's been a coin toss whether the instructor or factory rep had that info himself.

How about this, though ....

Over time, having attended the M&P pistol armorer class 5 times (and the Shield class once, so far), and occasionally calling back to order spare parts, the subject has come up. Once I was told the manufacturer for S&W M&P pistol magazines and springs was Italian. Another time I was told that the company had changed the vendor for their M&P 45 magazines to an American manufacturer. I didn't even bother to ask when I did my last M&P pistol recert, and then a Shield armorer cert.

In the past, during the course of attending the S&W 3rd gen pistol armorer class a few times over the years, I was told that the company had used a couple of different American manufacturers for it's magazines, as well as its magazine springs, but the factory people who told me that didn't know the names of the companies, or which was making which magazines for which models of their 3rd gen pistols (or springs) at any given time.

Another time I got the impression that the mags for one new model were being made in-house, at least part of the time, but I didn't specifically ask for clarification be3cause I was calling on a different, although related, matter (as an armorer).

When it came to the SW1911's it was a bit easier, as the factory used some different products from some different well known companies at various time. The impression I got when asking about the changing selection seemed to be the availability from any given company at the time. I was told at one time that they had 1911 mags from a couple of different companies being shipped with their guns.

A couple of the oldest and/or largest pistol magazine makers are in Italy, and last time I remember some passing comment about magazines for a German pistol, it was mentioned that the Italian company making their mags made mags for a lot of gun companies.

In my SIG (Classic) pistol armorer class several years ago it was mentioned that for a couple of the models there were magazines made in both Italy and Germany. The only reason we were told that was to explain the differences in construction and appearance, and to remind us not to mix up the followers and springs between the different manufacture mags (from the different manufacturers in the 2 countries).

I completely understand that many private owners are gun enthusiasts and hobbyists, and like to learn interesting details about their favorite guns. I've met my fair share of armorers throughout the 26 different armorer classes I've attended (I actually went back and counted the certificates last year), though, and most of them are working folks who are more interested in being able to support, maintain and repair the guns for which they're responsible, and not so much in learning all the myriad details about manufacture and vendor sourcing. (Kind of like most of us weren't interested in where the tires were made for the patrol veh's, or the components for the radios and computers, etc. )

Another sometimes interesting twist to this is that sometimes gun companies might not only change vendors for various aprts and assemblies from time to time, or use more than one vendor at the same time, but they might actually end up buying a vendor.

S&W did that with their longtime major plastic/polymer vendor a few years ago. Then, they decided to buy the equipment to start doing their own nitriding process (and do it for other gun companies, under different names, which may also involve signing NDA's, so the other gun companies can call the treatment whatever they wish since they're "buying" it).

Don't expect any particular customer service person to have the current knowledge about what vendor is making the magazines, either (or any other parts), as they often only know enough to be able to do they jobs. One CS person, might, and another dozen might not. One CS person might be a 30 year S&W employee who has worked in production for some different guns, and enjoys answering phone calls ... and another one might be someone who just came over from their retail store, and who has never even fired a gun, but can tell you all about apparel and other products and services offered by the various companies S&W's holding group has been busy buying in recent years.
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Old 04-11-2018, 02:58 PM
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Never heard of Mecgar making any S&W mags but if they did then why are so many issues with Shield mags collapsing the spring into itself?

Seems S&W has on at least 2X changed their springs to no avail!

Mecgar does make mags for some Keltecs and come with guns and are marked Mecgar!

I had to replace all 4 of my Shield mag spring with springs made by Wolff!
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Old 04-11-2018, 03:11 PM
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What manufacturers use mec-gar mags as original equipment?

From the Mec-Gar website:
-Astra
-Beretta
-Browning
-Colt
-CZ
-Llama
-Luger
-Para-Ordnance
-Ruger
-Smith & Wesson
-Sig Sauer
-Star
-Witness
-Taurus
-Walther
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Old 04-11-2018, 03:36 PM
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Despite what the above list says, i don't really believe that Mecgar makes the S&W Shield mags which have those self-collapsing springs and S&W did attempt to make new springs last yr. with "NO" success!
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Old 04-11-2018, 03:36 PM
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None of the magazines for my current M&P pistols are marked "Made in Italy" nor can I remember any of the magazines for my previous S&W pistols being so marked.

All of the Mec-Gar magazines I have ever owned, whether they were Mec-Gar branded or OEM branded (i.e. formerly SIG magazines), carried the "Made in Italy" marking.

I believe that Mec-Gar magazines, being made in Italy, have to be so marked to be legally imported into the US.
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Old 04-11-2018, 03:40 PM
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I've seen a progression of mag springs for my M&P 45 since my '08 production gun was received, starting with orange and then purple, green and last time light blue (with a new follower used with the blue spring). From what I've been told, S&W was previously working with its vendor to try and resolve some apparent heat treat issues after receiving feedback from customers.

Off all the original mags I have for that M&P 45, I've only had ONE orange spring adopt a weird deformation at the transition point, taking on a 90 degree angle when removed from the mag body. They shipped me purple replacement springs ... and then still later I heard that a few customers had continued to experience some problems, and then the green springs appeared (color change usually indicates a revision, and/or a change in vendor, for S&W parts). None of my purple springs have exhibited a problem, though, and I'm still using them (with a couple of newer mags that have green springs). The last new shipment of springs/followers I received (armorer parts order) were the light blue springs, but I'm in no hurry to replace my current purple/green mag springs until it's "time" for replacement, or a spring exhibits a problem.

I've heard of at least one other gun maker's magazines, using the "stacked" spring coils (small at top transitioning to large at bottom), where a problem was reported to sometimes develop at the transition point point.

People expect a lot from a relatively inexpensive wound spring. I remember many years ago, talking with someone from S&W, learning that one shipment of mag springs for the 4006 model had apparently had a heat treat problem. It only affected (relatively) few magazines, but the problem was such that it didn't surface until the springs had been in-service for a while, at which point a small number of them prematurely weakened.

I was told that when mag springs are received in 10,000 piece lot shipments, that there's not only an expected tolerance variance that can occur, and it's not like the springs are something which can be "tested" individually as they come off the machinery, before being shipped. While care is obviously taken during manufacturing, sometimes an unrecognized defect in materials or manufacturing (including heat treat) might still slip by unnoticed.
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Last edited by Fastbolt; 04-11-2018 at 03:44 PM.
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Old 04-11-2018, 04:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akdude View Post
Despite what the above list says, i don't really believe that Mecgar makes the S&W Shield mags which have those self-collapsing springs and S&W did attempt to make new springs last yr. with "NO" success!
So, when someone from the company says the magazines are delayed because they haven't arrived from their manufacturer in Europe, you think that means it's because they're American-made, and then shipped to Europe to be shipped back?

I didn't think it was important enough to make notes, but last I remembered (talking with factory folks), M&P 40/9 mags are made by Mec-Gar, the M&P 45 mags were made overseas, and then had the new Teflon finish applied in the US, and then they planned to start having the .45 mags produced here.

I didn't make any notes about mag manufacturer(s) from the Shield armorer class, although I did make a note that were warned not to remove the plastic sleeve from the extended mags. The sleeve is there to prevent over-insertion of the mag, because if the mag is shoved up further than designed it can can cause damage to the ejector.

Also, looking at my notes, I'd forgotten that S&W has changed over to manufacturing their own steel sights for the M&P's (including the Shield). The night sight capsules are added by Trijicon (unless they've also changed that in the last year ).
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Old 04-11-2018, 05:41 PM
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Act-Mag is also in Italy.

ACT-MAG S.r.l. - Smith & Wesson
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Old 04-11-2018, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikem View Post
So now it's "a lot" of pistol manufacturers have their mags made by Mec-Gar.You seem very certain. Please name just a few of the many.

I have been told the same thing again and again over many years. But no one has ever been able name a single company which has its "OEM" mags manufactured by a different company.

If this is even true, I don't understand the big hush hush deal.

Do people think Mercedes Benz manufactures all its parts?
Every Paraord, S&W, and Browning magazine I have (15 different pistols) was made by MECGAR (some or all of the production). The recent Browning HIPo magazines were made by MECGAR with the little springs on the bottom; MECGAR sells the same magazine without the little springs under MECGAR name. HiPo magazines patents ran out ago, except for Brownings new patent on the little ejection springs.
See the AKdude list above from MECGAR for another dozen companies with some or all of their magazines made by MECGAR. Companies are not required to mark parts made by suppliers.


As to who believes what, or doesn't, not my problem. MECGAR never has made a secret of it...?. Parts do not have to be marked with country of origin. Do you see "Made in Brazil" on a Ford engine?
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Last edited by OKFC05; 04-11-2018 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 04-11-2018, 08:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akdude View Post
What manufacturers use mec-gar mags as original equipment?

From the Mec-Gar website:
-Astra
-Beretta
-Browning
-Colt
-CZ
-Llama
-Luger
-Para-Ordnance
-Ruger
-Smith & Wesson
-Sig Sauer
-Star
-Witness
-Taurus
-Walther
Luger is manufacturing pistols? I need one to go with my Erfurt and DWM manufactured Lugers.
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Old 04-11-2018, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akdude View Post
What manufacturers use mec-gar mags as original equipment?

From the Mec-Gar website:
-Astra
-Beretta
-Browning
-Colt
-CZ
-Llama
-Luger
-Para-Ordnance
-Ruger
-Smith & Wesson
-Sig Sauer
-Star
-Witness
-Taurus
-Walther
I see those listed as available brands of guns that Mec-Gar makes mags for (listed here: Shop for Magazines | Mec-Gar Magazines )

However, I don't see a definitive list under the OEM section of their website: Mec-Gar Magazines

Unless I am missing something, they may be the OEM for those or more or less manufacturers, but it doesn't explicitly say they are... Unless I missed a list that was supplied on the OEM section of Mec-Gar's site.
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Old 04-11-2018, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichiganScott View Post
Luger is manufacturing pistols? I need one to go with my Erfurt and DWM manufactured Lugers.
Not as far as i know but Mecgar makes mags for the Lugers!
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Old 04-11-2018, 09:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OKFC05 View Post
Companies are not required to mark parts made by suppliers.

As to who believes what, or doesn't, not my problem. MECGAR never has made a secret of it...?. Parts do not have to be marked with country of origin. Do you see "Made in Brazil" on a Ford engine?
Every "article" (i.e. magazines sold separately from a gun) of foreign origin, or its "container" (i.e. a gun) must be marked with its country of origin.

United States Code, Title 19, Section 1304
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Old 04-11-2018, 10:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gc70 View Post
Every "article" (i.e. magazines sold separately from a gun) of foreign origin, or its "container" (i.e. a gun) must be marked with its country of origin.

United States Code, Title 19, Section 1304
I believe the use of the term "container" is describing the shipping box/packaging that the foreign-made item resides in, during it's importation into the US.

Howevuh......there are (many) exceptions to marking country of origin. One that might apply to an imported
magazine assembly, for a US manufactured firearm, might be this---

" the manufacturer or processor in the United States who converts or combines the imported article into the different article will be considered the “ultimate purchaser” of the imported article within the contemplation of section 304(a), Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304(a)), and the article shall be excepted from marking. "

Per Title 19, Part 134, Country of Origin Marking: Section 134.35 (a),

400 Bad Request

^-----Link is good...

Last edited by Steve912; 04-11-2018 at 10:11 PM.
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