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Old 09-27-2012, 04:46 AM   #1
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Default A Problem With Ruger Magazines?

My son has purchased a Ruger LC-9 with laser for use as a carry gun. Since he's going to get his Kansas Concealed Carry Firearms Lisence (CCFL) he has been training with snap-caps on loading the magazines, inserting them and racking the slide to charge the pistol. He hasn't had time to go to the range for actual live fire yet (that comes tomorrow) and he has a few weeks until his class starts. He came to me today asking what might be wrong with one of the magazines for his Ruger. It was the one I had bought him at Cabela's in Ruger packaging and carrying the Ruger symbol and signage. When he loaded the gun and chambered a round, then racked the slide to eject and load another cartridge, the chambered round failed to extract and the gun would jam severely. Upon investigation, we found that the magazine in use when this happened was the one I had bought him and a close look at it revealed that it was marked "Made in Italy" rather than "Made in USA" as on the mag that came with the pistol. A careful visual emamination showed us that the tally holes in the sides of the Italian mag were slightly smaller than in the US-made unit and the catch-notch also seems a bit smaller in the Italian magazine. The magazine cost the same as an American-made unit; $34.95 minus tax (and kinda high if you ask me) and I expected Ruger quality if the brand name is on the part. I don't know if it will have an impact on the ability of the gun to cycle during live fire, that we will find out in the morning. I just wonder if anyone else has had any problems with foreign-made, Ruger-branded magazines.

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Old 09-27-2012, 05:26 AM   #2
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I have two mags for my lc9 one made in the USA and one made in Italy, while I've never used snap caps in it I haven't had an issue with either mags. I hope the same goes for your son.

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Old 09-27-2012, 05:28 AM   #3
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To start off with the pistol needs to be broken in. I use steel case ammo to break semi-auto pistols in. Usually after 50 rounds they are shooting great. The abrasive nature of steel case ammo polishes the cylinder and other parts. I would run another 100 rounds or so of quality ammo through the gun. The grease used to assemble guns is a preservative not a lubricant. Since there is no way to tell how long the gun might sit on the shelf before it sold guns are assembled with preservative. The gun needs a good cleaning before shooting it.

As for the magazine, it needs to be filled with ammo then allowed to sit for a few days. A few drops of remoil in the observation holes can't hurt. Yes, magazines need to be broken in as well.

The magazine springs in the magazines for my P95 were so stiff that ruger sends a tool to load the magazines the first few times. Same thing with my promag 32 shot magazine. I had to fill it with ammo and let it sit for a few days to break in properly.

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Old 09-27-2012, 09:40 PM   #4
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I am surprised to hear there were issues. I believe Ruger contracts their mags (the ones for individual retail purposes) to MecGar, an Italian manufacturer with a very good reputation for quality products. I can't imagine the magazine being faulty. They have been a rock solid builder of these accessories for years! That said, everyone has a bad apple every now and again. Test it hot and see if live ammo has issues. Also test the other mags. Hopefully the snap caps simply act funny in that particular mag and real ammo will prove the gun viable! ( I say these things as I too am looking at the LC9!)

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Old 09-28-2012, 04:28 AM   #5
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Okay, here's an update on my Son's Ruger: Yes, it had been field-stripped and cleaned and lubed under my direction (this ain't my first rodeo) but I appreciate the reminders. The snap-caps were used to give him some training with the UpLULA loader I got him, he also used them in simulated loading, chambering and re-chambering of the pistol. They were Lyman A-Zoom snap-caps, a brand I have used for years that has a reputation for quality. The problem occured with both snap-caps and American Eagle 9mm hardball rounds that he loaded into the clips and ran manually through the chambering sequence. This morning I inspected both magazines and while using a digital-caliper gauge to determine variences between the domestic and the foreign sourced mags, I noticed that the Italian unit had a smaller gap between the feed lips than the American-made mag. Really close inspection revealed a slight burring of the metal at the curve of the left feeder lp; a burring that seemed to mean that all the necessary metal had not been removed by the press during the manufacture of that part. I worked it a bit with a small file until the width was the same as the US-made unit.
At the range the Ruger ran with both magazines without incident. My son was pleased with the gun and it's ease of use. He especially appreciated the laser since he has some vision limitations (no, he isn't the "blind-guy with a gun!" kind of limitations) and it helped with targeting. We both have a problem seeing front sights; him due to his eye problems, mine because the sights on my 1911 are little and black (soon to be remedied!).
Thank you all for your suggestions and I'm glad the problem wasn't more serious. I thinking that somebody in Italy had a little too much 'grappa' for lunch and didn't watch the magazine stamper closely enough!

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Old 10-12-2012, 03:08 PM   #6
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I'll be picking up my LC 9 Monday and i also got an extra mag... I'll report my findings to see if your issue was a irregularity or the norm.

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Old 10-12-2012, 03:22 PM   #7
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Ruger customer service has been very good. I would contact them and inform them of the problem. By the way, if you register your purchase with Ruger, they will give you a coupon for 20% off on accessories.

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