When Ruger bounced onto the market with their SR-556 rifle, the guns shipped at first with polymer magazines. Now the company has stepped up to the plate and is offering Ruger-branded metal body mags for these popular rifles.
The old mags
Ruger has long sold a 30-round polymer magazine, (Magpul's PMAG) shipped in Ruger packaging as item number # 90402. Other than the red packaging, there was not a lot different on these mags than you would get direct from a Magpul dealer. While efficient and durable, (many military units buy PMAGS out of their own pocket for use in the sandbox), they just aren't made out of steel-- and you know how some gun guys are about polymer.
The new mags
Going back to the 'old-school' standard for AR magazines, Ruger is now selling bargain priced ($19.99) steel bodied 30-round magazines as item number #90420. These mags are made by a major defense contractor and accept 5.56mm/.223/.300 Blackout in standard AR STANAG lowers with no issues.
Manufactured in the USA by C Products Defense, they are of an improved design over older Mil-Spec mags and feature a stainless steel, two-part body that is robotically welded to control critical-to-function dimensions to ensure proper mag well fit. Each magazine is coated in black Teflon for corrosion resistance and enhanced durability while the stainless steel spring and orange, anti-tilt follower are designed specifically for increased feeding reliability.
Who are C-Products?
This new steel magazine is made by C Products Defense in Bradenton, FL. With some 50-years of experience as a military contractor, 30-round M4/M16 magazines are their bread and butter. Their goal "is to manufacture the best-designed, highest quality, 100% reliable magazines that work the first time, every time, because a firearm is only as good as its magazine." C Products stands by their magazines with a 100% replacement guarantee.
At the writing of this Ruger lists the following on their website " We are currently SOLD OUT of 10/22, Mini-14, Mini Thirty and SR-556 magazines. As we receive inventory, we are fulfilling orders on a first-come, first-served basis. We cannot tell you when a particular order will be filled, but assure you that we are continuing to receive magazines from suppliers and that we are processing orders fairly and as quickly as possible. Due to increased demand for magazines, we are limiting orders of magazines to five magazines of any one model, per order. Please be patient."
While you may have to get in line, at least they are still out there. Nevertheless, you have to admit, anyone selling new military-grade steel-bodied AR mags with a no-tilt follower for $20 a pop these days is doing the country a service.