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The Mackazine

Hopper magazine clip reload wye 3d printed

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#1 Zack the Mack

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Posted 30 July 2016 - 03:46 PM

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Hoppers are simple, powerful, and reliable, but ball valves take forever to reload. Instead of feeding darts one by one like an asshole, replace the entire hopper like a magazine - a Mackazine.
 
2016-07-15 14.18.28 scaled.jpg
 
This uses a 3D-printed part, which you should print at crappy resolution with 15% infill. If you're not a member of the glorious 3D printer master race, you could mold one out of epoxy putty or ShapeLock or even carve it out of wood.
 
This project is an improved version of Aeromech's Quick-Change Hopper Clip.
 
Materials:
  • A hopper's worth of PVC pipe
  • An endcap or plug
  • Heavy-duty tape like Gorilla Tape
  • One tape measure, to be sacrificed for the greater good
  • One 3D printed / handmade retainer (STL attached)
  • Two spare self-tapping screws (about 1/8")
2016-07-26 00.49.13 scaled.jpg
 
STEP 1: Glue your endcap or plug into the hopper. Blasphemy.
 
Retainer scaled.png
 
STEP 2: Cut a 5 3/4" segment of tape measure. Drill 1/8" holes 1/4" and 1/2" from one end. These measurements are easier than usual because you're cutting a tape measure.
 
STEP 3: Cut a strip of tape long enough to cover the tape measure. Fold it over the tape measure. Use heavy-duty tape - the glue on electrical or duct tape can soften in heat and expose the razor-sharp metal.
 
STEP 4: Use two screws to fasten the retainer to the strip, right through the tape.
 
2016-07-26 14.11.11 scaled.jpg
 
STEP 5: Tape the retainer assembly to the hopper. Your Mackazine is done!
 
2016-07-29 00.35.10 scaled.jpg
 
STEP 6: Optional: Sand the edge off your blaster's wye to make reloading easier.
 
2016-07-26 14.12.04 scaled.jpg
 
To fill a Mackazine, just shove darts into the pipe, heavy side up. You don't even need to hold the retainer open.
 
Inserting scaled.png
 
To load a Mackazine, align the retainer with the wye and swing the mag into place. The tape measure will give way with an audible snap and release the darts.
 
2016-06-25 18.11.57 scaled.jpg
 
You can carry them in a magazine pouch - one AR15 pouch will hold two. The pictured rig is a Voodoo Tactical Six-Mag Drop-Leg Shingle purchased from Amazon. Note that one magazine pouch is deliberately not loaded with Mackazines - mags in that pouch could jab my lower body if I jumped too aggressively. Gotta be safe!
 
TACTICOOL CONSIDERATIONS: The main advantage that Mackazines hold over a dart-by-dart system (ball valve, Hole Door, breech) is that the darts don't need to be oriented as they're inserted. You don't need to pull a handful of darts from a dump bag and turn them around as you insert them, which improves situational awareness while reloading. 
 
The main downside is the weight of the Mackazines. The pictured 10x10 loadout didn't affect my agility, but it was heavy and fatiguing over time. For extended wars like Apoc, I plan to carry just four extra Mackazines and retreat to reload if necessary.

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Edited by Zack the Mack, 30 July 2016 - 04:06 PM.

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#2 shandsgator8

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Posted 30 July 2016 - 04:27 PM

Cool stuff. Those slugs look familiar, by the way!

 

I like being able to top off with a ball valve, but that's just me.  This is certainly a different and neat way of doing things. I'd like to see it in action at Apoc.


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#3 CaptainSlug

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Posted 30 July 2016 - 05:10 PM

You can also use these to reload a traditional wye through a ball valve (or check valve) if it doesn't have the other slip female connection cut off. That way you have the option of just topping off your hopper by hand, or doing a full reload of it.


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#4 The Manta

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Posted 30 July 2016 - 09:13 PM

Wow this is super cool! I bet you could replace the tape measure with some other material too, just something that bends and springs back into place easily.


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#5 CaliforniaPants

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Posted 31 July 2016 - 06:09 PM

this is the only one of these I've seen that actually looks easy to use and consistent, I thought I'd never see one. the tape measure material will definitely break over time, but you've also got another ten+ feet to use so who cares. 


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trans as shit because fuck you


#6 Zack the Mack

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Posted 31 July 2016 - 11:17 PM

You can also use these to reload a traditional wye through a ball valve (or check valve) if it doesn't have the other slip female connection cut off. That way you have the option of just topping off your hopper by hand, or doing a full reload of it.

 

That's a great idea. I don't have any "magic ball valves" with a loose dart fit to test, but if you used this configuration, you could use thinner-walled tubing to reduce the weight, since the Mackazine wouldn't need to mate with the wye.

 

the tape measure material will definitely break over time, but you've also got another ten+ feet to use so who cares. 

 

A 5.75" length of tape measure should buckle but never crease. This is the minimum length I could use - even a 5.5" segment of tape measure will crease after a few insertions and quickly snap off. 

 

But yes, one $5 Harbor Freight tape measure has enough material for at least 60 Mackazines.

 

Before settling on the tape measure, I tested styrene, PETG, HDPE, Kapton, vinyl, and ABS spring elements, and they all creased within a few dozen actuations. HDPE (milk jug, used in Aeromech's original design) was the most durable plastic, but it weakened after only 20 or so actuations.

 

If you wanted to make a really, really durable Mackazine, you could try heat-treating the tape measure or just using spring steel stock.

 

Those slugs look familiar, by the way!

 

Guilty as charged. Shands did supply the pictured Slugs, and they're quite good.


Edited by Zack the Mack, 31 July 2016 - 11:17 PM.

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#7 Meaker VI

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Posted 01 August 2016 - 11:58 AM

But yes, one $5 Harbor Freight tape measure has enough material for at least 60 Mackazines.

 $5? You done been had son. I get those for free with other stuff. Just use the coupons, I think you can even pull them from online now.

 

Ed: Actually just got a coupon in the mail today: Try # 60927652 for the free tape and 60942925 for 20% off the rest of your purchase.


Edited by Meaker VI, 03 August 2016 - 06:34 PM.

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#8 shandsgator8

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Posted 01 August 2016 - 04:41 PM

How do reloads work when there hopper is still filled with a few slugs? Do you have slugs fall to the ground or get in the way of the new Mackazine you're trying to insert?


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#9 Zack the Mack

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Posted 01 August 2016 - 05:11 PM

How do reloads work when there hopper is still filled with a few slugs? Do you have slugs fall to the ground or get in the way of the new Mackazine you're trying to insert?

 

The retainer snaps back pretty quickly and traps the darts inside. Sometimes, the retainer will pinch a dart against the hopper opening. 

 

I've found that one dart will usually stay in the wye. Loading a jam-packed Mackazine over it acts like overfilling a standard hopper and causes double shots. If you tend to reload early, you might want to leave an inch of headroom just in case.

 

Clear PVC helps too!


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#10 father time

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Posted 04 August 2016 - 06:41 PM

In place of the Tape measure part, you could use a piece of slap bracelet

https://www.amazon.c...t/dp/B002SPU2YY


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