Friday, March 30, 2018

Shooting Star 8 Round Magazine

Anyone used these for M1911A1?  Are these reliable?   I was watching a video where a Rock Island Armory M1911A1 was not completely reliable with 8 Round Colt magazines.  Some years ago, I bought a conversion kit from a company called Magpack that was speed to convert a standard M1911 7 rounder to 8 rounds by replacing the spring and follower.  It was a failure.  It would not feed the first round.  


  1. Odd. I've got MagPack kits in my Colt mags for my Officers Model, and they are 100% reliable. Wish I could find more, the company disappeared prior to the web, it seems. That ballbearing insert in the follower eliminated the problem of the stock mags stovepiping the last round in the Officers, while adding an additional cartridge. I put many thousands of rounds thru those mags, with zero problems in classes and a 3-gun

  2. For a very long time a, if not the standard for 8 round 1911 magazines has been Wilson's 47D magazine. I use only those in my 1911s, and aside from one of them not liking Gold Dot as the last round, they've performed flawlessly, I trust them with my life. Wilson also has two New, Improved, and generally quite a bit more expensive lines of magazines which I've not tried.

  3. There are lots of 8 rd mags on the markets these days that I don't believe require conversions...

  4. Clayton, I suspect the problem might be the typically weak recoil spring in the govt model not playing well with the Wolfe spring in the MagPak kit. The Officers Model ran a 22-24 lb recoil spring, where the govt was 16 lb. I could stand to the side and watch my friend's slides trundle back and forth when he was shooting his various govt's. Only his DeltaElite/10mm moved like the Officers.
    We had a bad batch of Blazer Brass at a class, and his gun continually choked from bullet setback absorbing the energy of the feeding cycle. Major setback. Enough to give vertical stringing on targets at all ranges. My Officers never balked, so it took a while to realize the ammo was the cause of his feeding problem, and my inaccuracy. (temper of the brass seemed to be the cause)

    the Wilson mag was designed to deal with the various feeding problems competitors were having with IPSC raceguns. His straight, short feeding lips design eliminated the "controlled feed" that JMB thought the 1911 required for reliability. It does appear to be more accommodating when ammo and other design parameters wander away from the baseline 1911 specs. Unfortunately, it seems good at also hiding mechanical problems.

  5. Will: while I can see your point about the short feeding lips changing the feeding, and e.g. making it easier for non-FNJ rounds to enter the chamber since they're aligned straight(er) with the chamber earlier, I don't see how this totally eliminates the controlled feed of the 1911, the round is still being released into the Mauser style claw extractor, right? Certainly looks so based on a couple of pieces of brass I just checked, I could see no marks consistent with the extractor being somewhere else initially.

    And whatever the change this made to JMB's (PBH) initial design, the bottom line in my guns is that these 47D magazines are absolutely reliable, save for the mentioned one gun that one type of ammo in the last position fails to feed reliably. (Insert here the anecdote late in his life, I think after 1911, of his chastising a young engineer for not improving one of his designs during development, based on the assumption Browning's was perfect.)

  6. hga:
    the brass always slides under the extractor in a 1911. It will break at the hook, sooner or later, if forced to snap over the rim.
    Hmm, that may not be a 100% accurate statement. I suspect the body of the extractor can be trimmed to allow the entire length to flex, but I also suspect the Series 80 version might not be a good one to play with in this regard. Might be weak at the cut for the safety plunger.

    The differences in the mags are related to timing of release, and how controlled the round is in the process.
    BTW, the fix for your last round feeding problem you had is to use a follower that has a raised bump or ridge (usually located to nestle into the extractor groove, but not always, sometimes just in the middle of the brass). What happens is the mag spring is weakest for the last round, and when the slide smacks into the brass, it bounces ahead of the extractor and gets jammed. That was one of the fixes in the MagPak follower design. A newer (stiffer) mag spring might be an adequate fix for a govt model, though.