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Product Test: Tripp .45 Magazine Upgrade Kit

1721 Views 2 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  SpecialEd
Hello. I recently purchased 5 of Virgil Tripp's .45 ACP magazine upgrade kits. For $8.95 a pop you get the follower and spring. I put these in Wilson 8-rnd magazines I had. The Wilson's were feeding fine, but now and then I would not have the slide lock back in two guns used today. One of them never locked a slide back on any of my 1911's.

The pistols used were a Norinco 1911 that I had done a few things to as well as a Colt slide/Caspian frame/Kart bbl & bushing 1911 that gunsmith, Lou Williamson, did for me in the '80's. That gun shoots but had been a bit magazine sensitive with much other than FMJ.

I fired 591 rounds of handloaded Precision 200-gr. CSWC's that were loaded over 5.0-gr. Bullseye through both guns rotating magazines frequently. Average velocity for this load is around 860 ft/sec from most 5" guns. I also fired 24 rounds of handloaded 230-gr. Golden Sabers (6.3-gr. Unique) through each gun, using a different magazine for each of the 3 loadings. After chambering the top round (very slickly in both guns), I topped the magazine with another round. I fired 16 rounds of using the same bullet over 6.8-gr. Unique. The lighter load averages about 870 ft/sec from the Caspian/Colt and about 850 ft/sec from the Norinco. The heavier load is runs about 950 ft/sec.

These guns were used with the Tripp magazine internals in Wilson 8-rnd magazines.

The magazine shown is a Tripp 8-rnd magazine I wrote up a while back, but you can see the follower, which is the same as in the upgrade kit. The follower is concave and has a little "tit" ala Colt magazines to help prevent the last round from sliding forward. That portion of the follower is polymer so I don't know if it will wear away with use and time or not. As you can see, the portion of the follower that meets the slide stop is steel.

In short, there were zero failures to feed, no premature slide-lock, and the slides locked to the rear on the last shot w/o fail. The last round fed fine from both guns when using the warmish handload; it did not move forward or such that it would get in front of the extractor claw.

I've tried these with a few other 1911 pistols and they worked fine. They do reduce capacity of 8-rnd magazines to 7, but magazines originally holding 7 rounds will still do so when using these parts.

So far I've only used these in Wilson magazines having the removable base. Installation is a snap. I did put one in my only problematic 7-rnd Randall magazine. It is an "old style" magazine similar to the Colt. It was a tad tricky getting the follower and spring in, but it works slickly and continues to hold 7-rnds.

I will try these in other "problem children" magazines I have and hope to have the results I experienced with the Wilsons.

So far I feel the money was well spent.

Full details on the kit and magazines can be found at
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A Small Update...

Hello. I'd previously tried these only in 8-rnd Wilson magazines. You have to hold your mouth just right, but they can also be used in problem GI type magazines, i.e., the follower and spring come out the top of the magazine.

I have several old Randall stainless 7-rnd magazines. Most have rounded followers and work fine in my 1911 pistols. One has a flat follower; I have no idea why. It would reliably fail to lock the slide back on the last shot on most of my 1911's.

Stuck a Tripp follower/spring in it and tried it today with my Norinco.

100 rounds of handloaded CSWC's

100 rounds of handloaded CRN

100 rounds of handloaded Golden Sabers

100 rounds of S & B ball

Zero failures to feed.

Zero failures of the slide to lock back on the last shot.

The magazine started out as a seven-round and stayed that way after installing the Tripp parts.

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Thanks for the info Stephen!

In another two weeks it will be a year since I first started posting here and bugging people with my questions. At that time I was talking about a decent 1911 style pistol to get. Since then I have picked up a Ruger KP512 and a FEG PJK-9HP, then I got a used S&W 586 and right after that I stumbled on a Browning MKIII demo model. (Not bad for my first 6 months, wait till my wife figures it out) anyway, here I am a year later and I'm back looking at 1911's again. I learned from getting the FEG (which I am quite happy with) that it only made me want the Browning all the more. I was checking out a RIA Commander NIB for $319 and a Springfield that looked like a Millspec in a Combat Commander size NIB for $439. They said I could probably get the Commander for the same price.

The problem is, I know that if I get the RIA, I'll wish I had saved a little more and gotten the SA. Once I'm in the SA range, I could save a little more and maybe get a Kimber, WHERE DOES IT END?

I also p/u CeePee's article on Commander size guns today and I love his reasoning "Because I like it!" I like Commanders but have shot 1911's very rarely, and something in the back of my head says I should get a fullsize first... (why, I'm not sure).

Anyway guys, keep those opinions coming and I will have to get to the rental range soon to make some compairsons.

Sorry about the ramble, it must be the coffee!

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