I haven’t done a gear post in quite a while and I figured I could knock out a quick tip before bed with a few pictures to demonstrate. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s a small tip that can help you avoid fumbling for the right magazine in the dark. Yes, people are going to tell you that you should be proficient enough in doing mag change drills that you shouldn’t need to do this, and for the most part they are right. However, practicing mag changes often comes in the form of standing static and upright, which while perfect and great for assaulters (and you really should be practicing this no matter your craft) when you’re spending 24-72 hours laying in a dark hole, you won’t always be able to find that next magazine you need quite as easily. In fact, you likely have removed your rack system altogether and have it layed out in front of you. That being the case throwing a little bit of luminescent tape on the floor plate of your magazine can go a long way.
You don’t always have to be introduced to ideas by some elite SOF soldier. Sometimes it is the grunts that come up with a handy idea that worked for them. This being the case here, I stole this idea from one of my peers who’s most spectacular job was working battalion staff. Everyone loves using pmags now-a-days, even for sniper rifles like the M110 and SR-25, so for this post I used one of the 25 round LR mags that I had. Keep in mind that you don’t have to limit yourself there, you can just as easily do this with a standard 30 round 5.56mm mag with a little creative thinking.
Here you have a view of the standard floorplate for the PMAG. Pretty simple to disassemble; it just takes a simple push in on the center (where we are going to place the luminescent tape) and then sliding the plate back.
Easily disassembled as you can see here.
You’ll want to measure your lum tape before you cut as the shape of the protruding piece you’ll be sticking the tape to can cause trouble trying to trim to the proper width when its already on there. Once you’ve cut your proper width, peel the back off and stick it to it. You may want to rely on shoe goo instead of the tapes own adhesive for a little stronger bond. From here you’ll want to trim the corners to the shape of the floorplate button; otherwise you run the risk of snagging and ripping the whole thing off.
Once trimmed, return the spring to the inside of the mag and close it up.
Not exactly the best photo ever, but here you can see the glow of the lum tape.
And just for good measure, if you ever need a well constructed pouch to carry your LR mags in, look for an old ACOG pouch at your local surplus store. Cutting the material out of the center will help fit two mags rather nicely as you can see here.
Little tricks and tips can make the difference sometimes. Whether you like the idea or not, its another one for the tool box of things you can consider when constructing your loadout. Anything that works for you is a good idea.
Stay hidden; stay safe.