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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Mission First Tactical Mag Coupler

Mag couplers have been around for ages, ever since soldiers realized that by achieving a quicker reload, they were able to get back into the fight faster.

With the AR-pattern rifle dominating the civilian rifle market, the development of add-on and replacement parts for the endlessly-modifiable AR platform has skyrocketed, pushing new designs into the MIL/LE arena as well as the civilian/sport markets.   

As new companies step up and take a crack at design, a lot of gear that we've seen for years gets an overhaul, an update, or a complete redesign.

While out and about a month or so ago, I stumbled upon a retailer that happened to have a decent stock of MFT gear on their shelves.  having kept an eye on the company for a while, I picked up one of their M16MC magazine couplers and one of their new REACT magwell grips for T&E.

Product specs (as listed by the Mfgr.)

M16/AR15 Mag Coupler
M16MC Features and Functions:
• Fits .223, 5.56 NATO, AR15/M16, Magpul PMAGS and Ruger Mini-14
• Manufactured from high density polymer
• Will not scratch or deform magazines

Ok, two caveats with this review:  This is not a reinvention of the wheel.  It's a mag coupler.  And two:  This is a pre-range review.  I have not gotten a chance to run this thing into the ground and see what happens.  I will.  And you'll get to see it.

So, what's my first impression?

I like it... so far.  By far the best part is the price.  I ended up paying $10 for it.  Big deal?  When there's a bunch of couplers that are out there that are selling for $20+, I'd consider it a steal.  IF IT WORKS.  

I put it together with a few of my 40 round C-Products mags just to see what I felt about it.  After getting the mags lined up, I found that the system, when set up properly is offset enough to allow easy access to the standard controls on an AR-pattern rifle.  

You can see what I mean in the following pictures:

I've noticed that running such large, heavy magazines seems to drag down at the mag catch, requiring a really good shove on the mag release.  For people with great finger strength, this is not an issue.  For my thin stick-fingers, it's more of a challenge.  Also, with such large magazines, the mag change is a little bumbling for my tastes.  As I have stated, I haven't had a chance to run and gun with this thing, but the weight of the magazines seems to hinder the rapid reload the coupler is designed for.  I will be switching to my go-to PMAGS for the actual test, as toting around that much weight outboard of the gun is a detriment for most uses.

Now, this is not the coupler's fault, as it was designed to link two 30-rounders, not two 40 rounders.  However, for something like a trunk gun, clamping a few extra oversize mags together might be a great idea, especially if space is limited, and you might not have time to don that high-speed rig.

I have swapped over to the lighter and smaller PMAG's, and I have to say, the difference, at least while doing test reloads, is amazing.

Anyways, enough of my gun-store banter for now.  I'll get back with you when I take this thing to the range.  Until then, stay safe, and keep shooting!

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