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Jwalker
09-19-11, 09:33
I thought I'd buy a few of these 20-round NHMTG magazines: http://www.44mag.com/product/nhmtg_20_ar15_magazine/nhmtg

They appear to have a black follower. I'm educating myself on followers and believe black is a bad color for them. Is that true when the follower itself has a cartridge shape molded into it?

Is there a difference between 20-round and 30-round followers?

If the black follower does need to be replaced, where can I get replacements?

Thanks.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 09:59
A 20 round magazine is fine with either a black (modern) or alloy (dated) follower. No need to change them, and I'm not sure there's even anything to change them to since CProducts went under.

The 20 and 30 round followers were originally very similar, with 30 round followers changing over the years. The old black 30 round followers are basically a 20 round follower with a leg on it to cap you at 30 rounds.

A bullet molded into the follower means nothing- not aware of any AR15 (or any rifle, really) follower that doesn't have a bullet figure on the top surface.

The straight tube design doesn't have the issues the inconsistent curve of the 30 rounders have.

Those are great magazines- I got a couple for bench shooting and they're awesome. Can't say I haven't briefly considered standardizing on 20 rounders, but I wasn't willing to take the hit on round count.

jet80tv
09-19-11, 09:59
I have a Colt USGI 20 rnd mag with a black follower that functions fine though the shape of both the metal and plastic followers in all my 20 rnd mags is different from the shape of 30 rnd mag followers. I have magpul followers in all my USGI 30 rnd mags, but Ive never had any issue or heard of any issue with the 20 rnd mag followers so not sure but you may be able to get magpul followers and install.

Redhat
09-19-11, 10:08
Why worry about it. Go out and test them; if they work why would you automatically want to change the followers? If they are GI mags, I would keep an eye on the feed lips.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 10:18
I have a Colt USGI 20 rnd mag with a black follower that functions fine though the shape of both the metal and plastic followers in all my 20 rnd mags is different from the shape of 30 rnd mag followers. I have magpul followers in all my USGI 30 rnd mags, but Ive never had any issue or heard of any issue with the 20 rnd mag followers so not sure but you may be able to get magpul followers and install.

No typical 30 round follower will work without modifying it. The leg to limit you to 30 rounds in a 30 round tube is going to decrease capacity in a 20 round mag which doesn't have a leg on its follower.

If I recall- I couldn't even get a MagPul follower to fit in a 20 rounder at all because of how the floor plate lock interferes.

Scoby
09-19-11, 10:52
If they are anti-tilt followers and function, I wouldn't concern myself with it.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 10:59
If they are anti-tilt followers and function, I wouldn't concern myself with it.

For real, have any of you guys ever even seen a 20 round magazine?

I pride myself in having a vast magazine collection- As of now, I have somewhere around 15-20 different types.

20 round magazines do not come with an anti-tilt follower, they don't need an anti-tilt follower, and unless something has changed CProducts (out of business) was the only company making an "anti-tilt" follower and it was a gimmick.

In fact, the follower MUST tilt in a 20 round magazine to some extent since the tube is straight and the case has a taper.

Scoby
09-19-11, 11:24
For real, have any of you guys ever even seen a 20 round magazine?

I pride myself in having a vast magazine collection- As of now, I have somewhere around 15-20 different types.

20 round magazines do not come with an anti-tilt follower, they don't need an anti-tilt follower, and unless something has changed CProducts (out of business) was the only company making an "anti-tilt" follower and it was a gimmick.

In fact, the follower MUST tilt in a 20 round magazine to some extent since the tube is straight and the case has a taper.

I'm not really familiar with USGI 20 round mags. I have a number of 30s but no 20s.

Have you ever seen a 20rd PMag? They have a straight contour just like a USGI and have anti-tilt followers.

Anti-tilt followers are not a gimmick.

markm
09-19-11, 11:40
Anti-tilt followers are not a gimmick.

Maybe not... but the USGI 20 round magazine without an anti tilt follower is the most reliable mag you can shoot.

People used to credit the reliablity to the old alloy follower... but it's really just the mag design.

Scoby
09-19-11, 11:57
... but the USGI 20 round magazine without an anti tilt follower is the most reliable mag you can shoot.


I'll have to take your word on that. I've got zero experience with the USGI 20s.

Why do you think the anti-tilt followers would lessen the reliability of the 20s when they have, IMO, improved the reliability of the 30s?

markm
09-19-11, 12:06
I'll have to take your word on that. I've got zero experience with the USGI 20s.

Why do you think the anti-tilt followers would lessen the reliability of the 20s when they have, IMO, improved the reliability of the 30s?

I can't quantify the reliability of the USGI 20... but years on consensus on the AR forums seems to point to it running more reliably than the 30... the 30 is no dog either... My thought is the feedlip design without the rear corners is better than the 30's feed lip design.

Anti tilt followers in the standard USGI mag would change the way it functions. Not sure what Pmag has going inside, but I'd bet it's a different internal design.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 12:38
I'm not really familiar with USGI 20 round mags. I have a number of 30s but no 20s.

Have you ever seen a 20rd PMag? They have a straight contour just like a USGI and have anti-tilt followers.

Anti-tilt followers are not a gimmick.

PMag 20s are known for having issues with the follower- specifically, the bolt failing to lock back automatically. In addition, they are not USGI and have different internal dimensions. (They may actually have a slight curve internally... I can't remember.) In any case, they're irrelevant in this discussion since we're talking USGI.

Anti-tilt followers are near-necessity (if not necessity) in a USGI30.... In a USGI20, though, they are a gimmick. USGI20s with stock followers are about as drop-dead reliable as magazines get.

double-d
09-19-11, 12:40
For real, have any of you guys ever even seen a 20 round magazine?
In fact, the follower MUST tilt in a 20 round magazine to some extent since the tube is straight and the case has a taper.

+1

The straight tube 20 round USGI are to be run w/o a anti-tilt follower. The 20 round Aluminum mag with a slight bend in them (D&H, DSG ARMS) should use a anti-tilt follower.

OP- the black aluminum follower will work like a champ as designed in the straight mags. Running the "chopped" 30 round bent ones, run a anti-tilt follower.

DD

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 12:41
I'll have to take your word on that. I've got zero experience with the USGI 20s.

Why do you think the anti-tilt followers would lessen the reliability of the 20s when they have, IMO, improved the reliability of the 30s?

A USGI20 requires that the follower tilt in order to feed reliably- if it didn't tilt to some degree, the cartridges would nose-dive. The follower tilts under spring tension, pushing up on the front of the cartridge stack so the cartridges feed reliably.

An anti-tilt follower in a USGI20 is at best a gimmick, and at worst will hinder proper function.

Edit to add: The reason the feed lip design is different on USGI20s compared to USGI30s is to strengthen the feed lips. The increased pressure on the feed lips of a USGI30 would cause excessive feed lip spread more rapidly if they had a USGI20 feed lip design. This is evident in the fact that when feed lips crack on a USGI 30 after being loaded for long amounts of time at full capacity (rare, but it does happen) they crack at the rear, where the material would be missing in a USGI20. That extra aluminum is holding the lips down.

Scoby
09-19-11, 13:18
Interesting.

I have a buddy that offered to give me three 20 rounders the other week. I delclined at the time as I really don't need them. I'll see if he's still got them. If he does I'll see how a anti-tilt will perform in one. Just to satisfy my own curosity nothing more.

Yes, I've heard people talk about having issues with the 20rd PMags not locking back. I have a dozen that I use alot and have never had a problem with one.

Redhat
09-19-11, 13:50
No problem with my 20 rd PMAGS either.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 14:11
I only have one PMag20 for my collection, and it has never given me an issue- but the numerous reports of problems can't be denied.

You won't fit a MagPul or similar follower into a USGI 20. The way the floor plate locks on won't allow it. A green or black USGI follower will fit in and should function (if I remember correctly) but you will have restricted capacity. This was years ago I played around with this, but I think you get somewhere around 15 or 16 rounds only.

I'd definitely take the free magazines- USGI20s are awesome magazines. Really reliable, and compact.

Jwalker
09-19-11, 18:06
Thanks, all - I appreciate the education. I've placed my order - probably my "first" order - but I doubt I'll ever equal the amounts that some of you have. Again, thank you.

EzGoingKev
09-19-11, 18:45
Interesting.
If he does I'll see how a anti-tilt will perform in one. Just to satisfy my own curosity nothing more.

They work just fine, but if you do not shorten the "legs" then you will convert them to 17 round mags.

USMC_Anglico
09-19-11, 19:31
No reason to replace anything on 20 rounders unless they malfunction. I have a bunch of original USGI 20 rounders that were "liberated" from an Air Force conex overseas. They have extremely worn finishes, alloy followers. I can't imagine how old they are. They all work 100%, I have never even bothered to dis-assemble any.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 19:38
No reason to replace anything on 20 rounders unless they malfunction. I have a bunch of original USGI 20 rounders that were "liberated" from an Air Force conex overseas. They have extremely worn finishes, alloy followers. I can't imagine how old they are. They all work 100%, I have never even bothered to dis-assemble any.

This holds true to my experiences, too. I have one of the Colt magazines with the floor plate stamped ".223Rem", these were last made in 1968-1969 if I remember correctly. It doesn't have a bit of dry lube left on it, it has the alloy follower, and the spring is extremely weak. I don't shoot it very much (it's really more of a collector's piece for me) but the few times I have it has performed as it should. Tough as nails.

ucrt
09-19-11, 22:17
This holds true to my experiences, too. I have one of the Colt magazines with the floor plate stamped ".223Rem", these were last made in 1968-1969 if I remember correctly. It doesn't have a bit of dry lube left on it, it has the alloy follower, and the spring is extremely weak. I don't shoot it very much (it's really more of a collector's piece for me) but the few times I have it has performed as it should. Tough as nails.

===========================================

FWIW
I've never needed to replace 20-round springs but I was told by a large magazine vendor that you can reliably cut 30-round springs and make them work.

.

jmart
09-19-11, 22:34
Not commenting on quality. Just listing these replacement aluminum 20 round followers from John Masen. (http://www.johnmasen.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=J&Product_Code=1509&Category_Code=AA) If you are set on aluminum, there is an option.

lamarbrog
09-19-11, 22:53
Not commenting on quality. Just listing these replacement aluminum 20 round followers from John Masen. (http://www.johnmasen.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=J&Product_Code=1509&Category_Code=AA) If you are set on aluminum, there is an option.

They're good followers, especially if you're going for an early magazine reproduction. However, the black plastic performs the same.

jet80tv
09-25-11, 21:51
If I push down on the front of the black plastic follower in my colt 20rnd magazine it will tilt but the other ones I have with an alloy follower won't tilt forward. I have never had the colt malfunction on me during use though.

Failure2Stop
09-25-11, 22:15
The USGI 20 rounder is better left unmolested.
Aftermarket followers don't work, and they work just fine without them.
I have 10 of them, but only 9 working, as I tried to "upgrade" one with a MagPul follower and a Ranger Plate. No joy.
Leave 'em alone and shoot 'em when the 30s don't work for your application.

FWIW- I did see that Brownells is offering 20 rounders with a Ranger Plate. Interesting.

a308garand
09-26-11, 16:22
I did this a while ago. Ruined a magpul follower and went to a green follower. Shaped it so it would fit into the 20 round magazine body.

20 round floorplates use a flat piece of spring steel tacked into the mag body to hook into the floorplate, so if you ruin it, you need to run 30 round magazine floorplates.

The magazine works well, but not any more of an improvement over the old black or alloy followers.

http://img186.imageshack.us/img186/9642/grn20b.jpg
http://img833.imageshack.us/img833/3264/grn20a.jpg

lamarbrog
09-26-11, 16:34
I did this a while ago. Ruined a magpul follower and went to a green follower. Shaped it so it would fit into the 20 round magazine body.

20 round floorplates use a flat piece of spring steel tacked into the mag body to hook into the floorplate, so if you ruin it, you need to run 30 round magazine floorplates.

The magazine works well, but not any more of an improvement over the old black or alloy followers.

http://img186.imageshack.us/img186/9642/grn20b.jpg
http://img833.imageshack.us/img833/3264/grn20a.jpg

Looks to me like you hacked on a green follower until you had roughly the same dimensions as a black follower... which just means you have a functionally black follower, that is green in appearance.

... We do understand that the color isn't actually what improves magazines, right? (I'm joking with you.)

Redhat
09-26-11, 17:37
Sure it does...I mean that's why they make different colors right?

bananaman
09-27-11, 09:55
I dropped Magpul followers into my D&H 20s and they work perfectly. Did it mostly because I had the followers laying around. As someone else already said, they are slightly curved anyway, don't know if that makes a difference. YMMV

Skang
09-27-11, 16:36
I had two 20rd P-mags that did not function right.

Bolt would never lock back on both magazines.

Followers were not smooths as 30rd P-mag some reason.

Failure2Stop
09-27-11, 17:19
I dropped Magpul followers into my D&H 20s and they work perfectly. Did it mostly because I had the followers laying around. As someone else already said, they are slightly curved anyway, don't know if that makes a difference. YMMV

Those mags are different than the 20 round USGI mags in a lot of ways beyond the very obvious curve.


I had two 20rd P-mags that did not function right.

Bolt would never lock back on both magazines.

Followers were not smooths as 30rd P-mag some reason.

It has been well documented that 20 round PMags are not the equal of 30 round PMags or 20 round USGI mags.

Jwalker
09-27-11, 17:32
Failure2Stop: It has been well documented that 20 round PMags are not the equal of 30 round PMags or 20 round USGI mags. News to me, but I'm new at this, again. I bought USGI 20-round mags since they'd be easier to use off a bench or prone. I'd planned to buy some 20-round P-mags, but I'll avoid them, now.

wetidlerjr
09-27-11, 19:12
A few years back CDNN sold some green followers for 20 rd. USGI mags. They were supposedly "anti-tilt" but in reality were, more or less, the same as the originals. I have a few in some of my 20 rd. USGIs. :cool: