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What is the Difference Between a Clip and a Magazine?

Introduction to Gun Terminology: Magazines and Clips

The Real Grit

November 14, 2023

image Navigating the world of firearms can be perplexing, especially when it comes to terminology. Two words often used interchangeably but incorrectly are 'clip' and 'magazine.' Knowing the difference is not just a matter of proper terminology but also of understanding your firearm better.

What's the Difference Between a Clip and a Magazine?

Function and Design: Clip vs. Magazine

Although both clips and magazines are essential for loading a gun, they serve distinct purposes. A clip is used to group cartridges together, simplifying the process of loading them into a magazine or directly into a gun's chamber. On the other hand, the magazine is a device that feeds the ammunition into the firearm's chamber during firing. For visual learners, imagine this: in a typical setup, a clip is what you use to organize your bullets, while the magazine is where they reside in the gun.

Exploring the Types of Clips

Varieties of Gun Clips: A Detailed Look

Stripper Clip: Commonly used, a stripper clip assists in loading a magazine from the top. It holds the rounds which can be pushed directly into the magazine, leaving the clip itself outside the gun.

En Bloc Clip: Famously associated with the M1 Garand rifles, en bloc clips are inserted whole into the magazine. They eject with a distinctive “ping” sound when empty.

Moon Clips: Shaped like a half or full circle, these are used in revolvers to facilitate easier loading and unloading of the cylinder.

Types of Gun Magazines

Differentiating Gun Magazines: Understanding Each Type

Detachable Magazine: These are the most common types, easily loaded and inserted into a firearm. They are versatile and used across various gun models.

Internal Magazine: Often seen in bolt-action rifles, these magazines are built into the gun and loaded from the top. They are a more traditional design.

Tubular Magazine: Common in .22 caliber rifles and some shotguns, these magazines are fixed under the barrel and loaded one round at a time.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it important to know the difference between a clip and a magazine? Knowing the difference can help in understanding your firearm's operation and ensures correct usage and maintenance.

Can I use any type of clip or magazine for my firearm? It's crucial to use the correct type specifically designed for your firearm model for safety and functionality.

How do I maintain my firearm's magazine for longevity? Regular cleaning and inspection for wear and tear can significantly extend your magazine's lifespan.

Discovering Guns and Accessories

At The Real Grit, we understand the importance of accurate information and quality products. Whether you're looking for reliable magazines or clips for your firearm, we offer a wide selection to meet your needs.

Visit our online store or contact us for expert advice and assistance in selecting the right accessories for your firearm.

Shop Our Extensive Collection of Gun Magazines

With a wide selection of gun magazines to suit various firearms at The Real Grit, you'll find high-quality options like:

And many more! Enjoy Free Shipping on orders over $49. Browse our full selection here.

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