By David Crane
defrev (at) gmail (dot) com
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December 3, 2010
TangoDown recently introduced a translucent ARC magazine (ARC-L Commercial magazine, to be specific) for 5.56mm NATO tactical ARs (tactical AR-15 rifle/carbines/SBRs). The 30-round ARC mag’s claim to fame is its patented two-piece modular construction, with the top and bottom sections utilizing a different type of aerospace polymer. In the case of the TangoDown translucent ARC mag, the top section is made from an opaque black polymer (fancy word for plastic), which, according to Jerking the Trigger, is supposed to be “generally stronger than plastic dyed other colors, so this design is actually an advantage for the ARC mags of all colors.”
Since the opaque black section of the ARC mag is covered when inserted in the magwell, there’s no disadvantage to that portion of the mag being opaque, other than not being able to count the rounds in a partially loaded mag (mag that’s already been partially used in a gunfight) being used for a tactical reload (in the same gunfight), which is probably going to be a pretty rare occurance.
The magazine follower on the Tango Down ARC mag is described by the company as a “unique low-friction semi-floating follower that is slotted to allow for easy magazine cleaning,” as well as a premium heat treated, stress relieved and moly-coated chromium-silicon spring (a.k.a. chrome-silicon spring) whose life expectancy is 100,000+ cycles. To clean the ARC mag, just “dunk the ARC Mag in hot soapy water, rinse and invert to drain.” Quick and easy.
The translucent ARC mag’s translucent lower body features ridge texturizing (ridges) on the front and rear for gripping, and large waffle-pattern ridges on the side. ARC mag weight is 4.48 ounces (4.48 oz).
According to the TangoDown ARC mag page, the ARC mag is NTOA member tested and recommended. NTOA stands for National Tactical Officers Association. That said, Defense Review hasn’t T&E’d the ARC mag at the range, ourselves, yet.
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