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Advice wanted for 10+ year safe queens. Login/Join 
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posted
Greetings,
I haven't shot my pistols in around 10 years. I have a reminder in my phone to clean my pistols every 3 months, so they are field stripped and oiled, but they stay in the safe with an occasional CCW if I am traveling to the big city.
I am seeking advice before I go to the range. Should I have my pistols serviced, or should they be good to go? There are no signs of rust and appear to disassemble and assemble without issue.
For reference, my pistols are:
Sig P229 in .40
Sig P250 in 9mm
Beretta Px4 in 9mm
Springfield XD Tactical in .45
Springfield XD Compact in .40

So why haven't I trained in 10 years?? Life, family, job, and other interests I suppose.


** My Underdeveloped Collection **
Sig Sauer P229 .40 Black with Aluminum Grips
Sig Sauer P250 9mm Black
Beretta PX4 Storm 9mm
Springfield XD .40 Subcompact Black
Springfield XD .45 Tactical Bi-Tone
 
Posts: 183 | Location: Crestview Florida | Registered: July 23, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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They're good to go.

I sold a friend a gun that was purchased in 1983 and never shot a couple of years ago.

He disassembled it, cleaned and lubed, and went and shot it with no problems.
 
Posts: 9008 | Location: Gilbert Arizona | Registered: March 21, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thank you sir! A bit of confirmation makes me feel better.


** My Underdeveloped Collection **
Sig Sauer P229 .40 Black with Aluminum Grips
Sig Sauer P250 9mm Black
Beretta PX4 Storm 9mm
Springfield XD .40 Subcompact Black
Springfield XD .45 Tactical Bi-Tone
 
Posts: 183 | Location: Crestview Florida | Registered: July 23, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Do you keep any of the mags loaded and not cycle them in your cleaning rotation?
 
Posts: 23 | Registered: January 04, 2021Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by LTCeveryday:
Do you keep any of the mags loaded and not cycle them in your cleaning rotation?

Houston we have a problem. I am not as persistent in doing this. In honesty, The XD .45 that stays next to the bed hasn't had the magazine cycled in over a year. I would say about 6 months for the P229. What is the suggestion for cycling intervals?


** My Underdeveloped Collection **
Sig Sauer P229 .40 Black with Aluminum Grips
Sig Sauer P250 9mm Black
Beretta PX4 Storm 9mm
Springfield XD .40 Subcompact Black
Springfield XD .45 Tactical Bi-Tone
 
Posts: 183 | Location: Crestview Florida | Registered: July 23, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I wanna go home
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I keep my mags loaded for years and never had any problems.
 
Posts: 1139 | Location: Pa | Registered: December 16, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by xd45man:
quote:
Originally posted by LTCeveryday:
Do you keep any of the mags loaded and not cycle them in your cleaning rotation?

Houston we have a problem. I am not as persistent in doing this. In honesty, The XD .45 that stays next to the bed hasn't had the magazine cycled in over a year. I would say about 6 months for the P229. What is the suggestion for cycling intervals?


If you said 10 years than maybe I would cycle them more often. I cycle my mag with my carry ammo at least once a year or when I hit the range with that pistol. This is my personal preference.
 
Posts: 23 | Registered: January 04, 2021Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by jeeperxd:
I keep my mags loaded for years and never had any problems.


Me either. I've had mags loaded for close to 10 years with no problem.

Where you run into problems is cycling. It's the compression/lack of compression that wears out the spring.
 
Posts: 9008 | Location: Gilbert Arizona | Registered: March 21, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by xd45man:
What is the suggestion for cycling intervals?


None. It's not necessary, and as noted, constantly loading/unloading magazines to "cycle" them is actively detrimental to magazine spring longevity compared to just leaving the magazines loaded and the spring constantly compressed.


The only thing to keep an eye out for is bullet setback in the top round of the magazine and the chambered round. During your every-3-month cleaning/oiling sessions, compare the overall length of the top round in the magazine as well as the round you ejected from the chamber to an unused bullet of the same type. If either the round from the chamber or the top of the magazine is shorter than the standard control round, chunk it and replace it with the standard length round.

The issue is, if you're constantly ejecting the round from the chamber, then loading the top round from the magazine into the chamber, then sticking the previously chambered round onto the top of the magazine, and repeating that process again and again, these same two rounds constantly being cycled into the chamber can push their bullets back into the mouth of the cases, which can cause an overpressure situation with those rounds.

But it's dead simple to just stand them next to an uncycled round and notice it if either one is developing setback.
 
Posts: 29088 | Location: Northwest Arkansas | Registered: January 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by RogueJSK:
quote:
Originally posted by xd45man:
What is the suggestion for cycling intervals?


None. It's not necessary, and as noted, constantly loading/unloading magazines to "cycle" them is actively detrimental to magazine spring longevity compared to just leaving the magazines loaded and the spring constantly compressed.


The only thing to keep an eye out for is bullet setback in the top round of the magazine and the chambered round. During your every-3-month cleaning/oiling sessions, compare the overall length of the top round in the magazine as well as the round you ejected from the chamber to an unused bullet of the same type. If either the round from the chamber or the top of the magazine is shorter than the standard control round, chunk it and replace it with the standard length round.

The issue is, if you're constantly ejecting the round from the chamber, then loading the top round from the magazine into the chamber, then sticking the previously chambered round onto the top of the magazine, and repeating that process again and again, these same two rounds constantly being cycled into the chamber can push their bullets back into the mouth of the cases, which can cause an overpressure situation with those rounds.

But it's dead simple to just stand them next to an uncycled round and notice it if either one is developing setback.


Here's a graph of pressure vs. setback which is the only scientific testing I've ever seen of setback. This one was done by CCI/Speer. As the graph shows, it never even got anywhere near the pressure of a proof load.

 
Posts: 9008 | Location: Gilbert Arizona | Registered: March 21, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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^^ Rogue's advice is sound and would have been great for me back in '92 w/ my brand new G17.2.
I loaded and unloaded two mags every day (+ recreational shooting and loading) and those mag springs softened up real fast.
Now I load them and forget about it.

And yes, there was bullet set back on many in the mags after I read enough here to reevaluate my routine and tossed the rounds.
 
Posts: 6516 | Location: MI | Registered: May 22, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Better to leave mags loaded than unload/load them just to do it. IMO. If you're CHAMBERING a round over and over, that's a problem. But leaving mags stored loaded is usually not an issue and from what I understand, springs wear out from being used/cycled, not from being left loaded (if loaded means within their design parameters).


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My hovercraft is full of eels.
 
Posts: 2907 | Registered: February 27, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I once took for safekeeping a WWI issued 1911. Not an A1. A 1911. Loaded magazine with GI hardball with 1917 headstamp. This was probably 1982 or so. With the family's consent, I shot it. Gun and ammo fully functioned. Mag was probably loaded after or during WWI.


End of Earth: 2 Miles
Upper Peninsula: 4 Miles
 
Posts: 13668 | Location: Marquette MI | Registered: July 08, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for this thread.




Set the controls for the heart of the Sun.
 
Posts: 7647 | Location: Flown-over country | Registered: December 25, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think you need to clean the safe. I mean, if you need to clean the inside of untouched guns every three months, it must be really dusty or dirty in there. Wink But then I have guns I haven't physically touched in 20+ years, and other than being wiped down with oil have never been cleaning in the 40 years I've had them. So I'm no one to judge. lol Big Grin

quote:
Originally posted by Flash-LB:
Where you run into problems is cycling. It's the compression/lack of compression that wears out the spring.

Is there a typo here? Aren't these two contradicting each other? (maybe not, re-read it again differently. The action of compression, not the continues state of compression.)



Where does this spring stuff come from? I assume there is engineering "science" to back it up. Maybe? lol Or just what everyone observes and repeats. (or just repletes)

I know a spring is not a spring is not a spring obviously. Different materials, different designs, different purposes. Because I know from my own work (and the springs it involves) that the idea that "use" is what kills them and keeping them compressed doesn't hurt them is completely false and just the opposite of what happens to these springs.
 
Posts: 19612 | Location: 18th & Fairfax  | Registered: May 17, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by cas:
I think you need to clean the safe. I mean, if you need to clean the inside of untouched guns every three months, it must be really dusty or dirty in there. Wink But then I have guns I haven't physically touched in 20+ years, and other than being wiped down with oil have never been cleaning in the 40 years I've had them. So I'm no one to judge. lol Big Grin

quote:
Originally posted by Flash-LB:
Where you run into problems is cycling. It's the compression/lack of compression that wears out the spring.

Is there a typo here? Aren't these two contradicting each other? (maybe not, re-read it again differently. The action of compression, not the continues state of compression.)



Where does this spring stuff come from? I assume there is engineering "science" to back it up. Maybe? lol Or just what everyone observes and repeats. (or just repletes)

I know a spring is not a spring is not a spring obviously. Different materials, different designs, different purposes. Because I know from my own work (and the springs it involves) that the idea that "use" is what kills them and keeping them compressed doesn't hurt them is completely false and just the opposite of what happens to these springs.


No, no typo at all. I'm describing compression (loading magazine) /lack of compression (unloading magazine one way or another).

If you've ever had a magazine that was hard to load and then loaded it, shot, loaded it again a bunch of times, you found it became easier to load. That's a symptom of the loading/unloading weakening springs. Leaving them loaded/unloaded does nothing.

Case in point is my latest acquisition, a Sir P365x Romeo Zero. I bought it in early December of last year. I don't rotate my carry ammo as often as a lot of people do. I do it perhaps every 3 years or so and many years of carrying has shown me that the ammo won't go bad just sitting in there so the ammo in my carry magazine is the same as December. It hasn't moved.

I have another magazine that came with the gun and gets used on a weekly basis as I shoot it every week. The magazine spring for the one I use every week has become noticeably easier to load over time while the one in my carry gun hasn't.

And here's some info about the magazine springs.

https://www.luckygunner.com/lo...gs-and-ammo-cycling/
 
Posts: 9008 | Location: Gilbert Arizona | Registered: March 21, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I clean my pistols every three months to ensure they are oiled rather than the inside of the safe being dirty like a barrel that just expelled a box of Blazer Brass. I suppose I do it for the same reason I test my smoke detectors and change the oil in my vehicle.


** My Underdeveloped Collection **
Sig Sauer P229 .40 Black with Aluminum Grips
Sig Sauer P250 9mm Black
Beretta PX4 Storm 9mm
Springfield XD .40 Subcompact Black
Springfield XD .45 Tactical Bi-Tone
 
Posts: 183 | Location: Crestview Florida | Registered: July 23, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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But your smoke detectors are running all the time and your car is actually being used.... the guns are just sitting there in a clean environment doing nothing....

But if you are more comfortable taking them out and cleaning and oiling... I'm not one to criticize that... at least they know they are loved.
 
Posts: 2993 | Location: Greenville, SC | Registered: January 30, 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Wolff Sprngs has a goof FAQ on magazine springs.

https://www.gunsprings.com/ind...p?page=FAQ#question5

5. How often should I change magazine spring?

Should I unload my magazines, rotate magazines, load with fewer than the maximum rounds?
Magazine springs in semi-auto pistols are one of the most critical springs and are the subject of much debate and concern. Magazines which are kept fully loaded for long periods of time, such as in law enforcement and personal/home defense applications, will generally be subject to more fatigue than the weekend shooter's magazine springs in which the magazines are loaded up only when shooting.

Magazine design and capacity also affect the longevity of the spring. In many older pistol designs, maximum capacity was not the always the goal such as with the 7 round 1911 Colt magazines will last for years fully loaded. There was room for more spring material in these guns which reduces overall stress and increases the usable life of the spring.

More recently higher capacity magazine have become popular. These are designed to hold more rounds with less spring material often in the same space. This puts more stress on the spring and will cause it to fatigue at a faster rate. Unloading these magazines a round or two will help the life of the spring. Rotating fully loaded magazines will also help the problem somewhat but it is not always practical.

In applications where the magazine must be kept loaded at all times, a high quality magazine spring such as Wolff extra power magazine springs, will provide maximum life. Regular replacement of magazine springs will provide the best defense against failure from weak magazine springs. Regular shooting of the pistol is the best way to be sure the springs are still functioning reliably.


“When the people find that they can vote themselves money that will herald the end of the republic.”
― Benjamin Franklin
"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."
― Margaret Thatcher
 
Posts: 9441 | Location: Northern Illinois | Registered: March 20, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by grumpy1:
Wolff Sprngs has a goof FAQ on magazine springs.


Sure. And the oil change shops recommend oil changes every 3000 miles. Big Grin
 
Posts: 29088 | Location: Northwest Arkansas | Registered: January 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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