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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got a brand new 1991 Series 80, and went to clean the original Colt 7 round mags after my first day at the range. Well, I managed to follow the manual enough to get the follower and the spring out. After cleaning and a light lube of all the parts, I put the spring in with the loop facing forward, but had a bit of a struggle to get the spring at the correct level to place the follower. When I finally got the spring to the right level and held with a small dowel through the mag side hole, I dropped in the follower and removed the dowel. When the follower came to the top, the loop was too far to the rear and the follower tilted forward a bit. I just put some pressure with a pencil on the follower and pressed it down and up a few times, and it seemed to finally lock into place.

Is this all par for the course? Is there an easier way?
 

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Pics would help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Pics would help.
It only happened that one time and then corrected itself. Ii tried it a couple times just now to repeat it and each time went well. I think the above time was an anomaly. I'm so used to just popping the bottom of a Mec-Gar for my Sigs and having no problems.
 

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It might help to inspect and make certain that the spring is oriented correctly and seated under the follower before withdrawing the dowel. You can load empty cases or simply press down on the follower to take pressure off the dowel, making it easier to remove. Allowing the follower to rise slowly under finger pressure will also allow you to see through the witness holes if the spring is seated correctly. If still unsure, check to make certain that the magazine will hold full capacity. If it stops one short, there is a problem with the spring/follower interface.
 
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Its not unusual to have to reach in under the follower and snap the spring in place as it may have rolled upwards when inserting the follower.
 

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I use a wooden dowel that just clears the lips of the magazine to depress the follower, and then stick a punch (or whatever) through an inspection hole to capture the spring. Don't press it too far down in the magazine, just far enough to take spring pressure off the follower. Remove the follower, and then release the spring.

To go back use the same dowel to depress the follower spring and capture it with the punch. Insert the follower and release the spring. If you can keep the spring near the top you can insert the follower and slide the back end past the spring all at the same time. I have a small set of jeweler's smooth jaw pliers that helps insert or get out the troublesome followers without scratching the follower.
 

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Never oil the follower, the magazine spring, or the interior of the magazine.

Oils can and will get into primer pockets and case mouths, then deactivate primers and powder. Annoying in plinking firearms, frustrating when you lose a match, and deadly in a self defense scenario.
 

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I use a wooden dowel that just clears the lips of the magazine to depress the follower, and then stick a punch (or whatever) through an inspection hole to capture the spring. Don't press it too far down in the magazine, just far enough to take spring pressure off the follower. Remove the follower, and then release the spring.

To go back use the same dowel to depress the follower spring and capture it with the punch. Insert the follower and release the spring. If you can keep the spring near the top you can insert the follower and slide the back end past the spring all at the same time. I have a small set of jeweler's smooth jaw pliers that helps insert or get out the troublesome followers without scratching the follower.
Or you can load a few rounds, insert the punch, dump out the cartridges, shake the follower out (it may need a nudging), put the magazine body face down on a cleaning mat and remove the punch. To reassemble you can depress the spring with a few rounds, I suppose dummy rounds would be preferred or snap caps, insert the punch, dump out the rounds and insert the follower.
 

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Never oil the follower, the magazine spring, or the interior of the magazine.

Oils can and will get into primer pockets and case mouths, then deactivate primers and powder. Annoying in plinking firearms, frustrating when you lose a match, and deadly in a self defense scenario.
I always oil the inside of my magazines, the springs and the followers, but I also wipe it off with a patch. I'd be more concerned about a rusted up magazine then any oil getting into any primers. Besides that, you have to use solvent to remove the powder residue, so you will have oil/solvent on the parts anyway. Just wipe the excess off.
 

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Never oil the follower, the magazine spring, or the interior of the magazine.

Oils can and will get into primer pockets and case mouths, then deactivate primers and powder. Annoying in plinking firearms, frustrating when you lose a match, and deadly in a self defense scenario.
I use spray silicone in mine. A better choice than oil, in my opinion.
 

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I always clean my magazines, Colt or any other brand. That is the reason manufactures provide instruction on how to disassemble the magazine/s. When they need cleaning and or oiling, I clean and oil with Ballistol. The oiling is not a "wet" oiling just a light coating to the inside and outside. Never had any problems for about 50 years.
 

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Or you can load a few rounds, insert the punch, dump out the cartridges, shake the follower out (it may need a nudging), put the magazine body face down on a cleaning mat and remove the punch. To reassemble you can depress the spring with a few rounds, I suppose dummy rounds would be preferred or snap caps, insert the punch, dump out the rounds and insert the follower.
The dowel is also used to depress the spring before installing the follower.
 

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Here's the process I used to do mag strips and reassemblies.........

Disassemble by any of the above method of pressing the follower down and inserting a punch, nail, heavy paper clip etc. to hold the spring down.
Turn the mag upside down and tap the feed lips on your hand. That will usually drop the follow so it can be lifted out with your fingers.
Remove the pin with your hand over the mag mouth, catch and remove the spring.

To reassemble, insert the spring and push it down by any of the above methods.
Insert the follower and remove the pin, allowing the spring to pop up against the follower.
Reach into the front of the magazine with a small screwdriver or punch and press down on a coil of the spring, and it will pop forward and against the follower in the proper position.

As for lubing the mag, the mags do need a tiny bit of lube to insure smooth operation and mainly to prevent rusting.

Contrary to popular belief, the idea of solvents and lubricants penetrating primers and "killing" them, that appears to be an old wives tail.
We've all heard or read anecdotal stories of dead primers, but that apparently doesn't really happen.
The famed "Box O' Truth site did a six week test where they put primed cased in a block and applied drops of a number of lubes, solvents, and penetrating fluids on the primers, then left them to soak long term.
Not one primer was deadened, even though bore solvents caused the primers and case heads to turn green.

https://www.theboxotruth.com/the-box-o-truth-39-oil-vs-primers/

In addition, the NRA Tech Staff says that you can't permanently "kill" a primer.
As soon as whatever you put in the primer evaporates or dries out, however long it takes, the primer comes back to life and will fire.
 

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Slush the assembled Mags around in a coffee can of gas nose down for a few moments..........reverse them and slush them some more, and then slush them again nose down..........
Remove them and blow them out with an Shop Air Hose.

Spray the innards with WD-40 and blow them out again............

Wipe them down with a clean rag and you're done.............

That's how I've cleaned my Mags for years with no problems.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
I always oil the inside of my magazines, the springs and the followers, but I also wipe it off with a patch. I'd be more concerned about a rusted up magazine then any oil getting into any primers. Besides that, you have to use solvent to remove the powder residue, so you will have oil/solvent on the parts anyway. Just wipe the excess off.
Thank you all for the details of how to disassemble and clean the Colt mags. It's not obvious. The spring tip getting caught rearward is exactly what happened to me the first time.

I'm also more concerned by rust in the mags. I clean them after every trip to the range, after having seen how much dirt builds up on the inside walls after just 100 rounds or more. I use Mil-Comm grease which I spray in and then wipe off everything after it dries, so there is just an invisible film on the parts, the recommended technique with this product. Never had a magazine related failure, a mag related misfeed, or any any rust. Have used Mil Comm on the barrel exterior and slide, and after 1000's of rounds, have no circular wear marks on the top of the barrel front, and no wear marks in the slide rails. Expensive stuff, but you need just a touch to cover a wide area.
 
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