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FN303 opening mags to lessen the tension.

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    FN303 opening mags to lessen the tension.

    FN303 opening mags to lessen the tension.

    Today, 09:02 AM
    Good day,

    Reposting for the good of MCB.


    I have reduced the tension on an FN303 magazine, the first ones I did where challenging, welcome the unknown ... err ... right.

    UV Halo that it is risky to do so as they are a nightmare to put back together
    The process is a little hairy but you can do it if you are careful (very careful)
    Yes, I second those comments, I have taken a several apart since and it gets a lot easier as you do several of them but respect for that spring straight from hell is needed at all times, the windup spring is the "Very violent" part of the assembly, if ever you have the bad luck to have taken one apart and the center of the windup starts unraveling, step back and let it be for a second or two, it will come to a semi mixed up ball of sharp edge 1/4" wide steel windup spring sorta like the one in a weedwhacker.

    *Do not mix and match parts of older and newer FN303 magazines, the mold tolerances over time have changed, some parts may fit together loosely others are too tight, do one at a time.

    To put it back in / reassemble an uncontrolled unwound spring... (add chosen swear words here, multiply swear words, add salt to open sores, use hammer on fingers if none come to mind), the outer layer of the spring must be counter wound back into the plastic spool assembly. the curve of the spring needs to be reversed completely.

    Tools needed IF the spring unwinds itself: 2 pairs of strong hands to take turns holding the spring in while the other set of hands takes a break and alternate rolling the spring back in counter clockwise, no you wont get a video about that. I also considered not winding it back in and just taking a loss and using the mag parts as spares, its THAT hairy.

    To disassemble them:

    1-Take the window off, I did not need tools to do this on my older FN303 magazines but I needed a flat flat screw drive to gently pry open the tab so the window can be un-clamped from the rest of the mag.

    2-Removing the PB/FSR "indexing wheel" from the windup spool holder, the one of the center side has a mushroom clamp style that needs to be pushed thru but before you attempt to do so, the "indexing wheel" needs to be removed from the windup spool holder because its holding the Mushroom clamp fully extended, I pushed mine out using a punch tool and carefully without moving the mushroom clamp and pushing within the "Y" in the middle of the magazine out while paying close attention and seeing that the Y is not all perfect and that the segments of the Y are different length's making it "keyed" for the assembly, not re-inserting it the right way will make it bind on itself and make the re-assembly a lot more difficult AND re-disassembly really dangerous, I put a dot using a silver sharpie on one of the Y segment end to match it back in during re-assembly.

    3-Once the "indexing wheel" is removed, the windup spool is exposed. you can turn it by hand and feel the tension on it, WOW, a PB shredder for sure.

    The trick here is to slowly lift the edge where the stopper is at without removing the center from the assembly, pushing the center mushroom clamp inward maybe 1/16 to 1/8" this is to make it skip past the stopper and remove the tension from the system until it comes to a stop without hitting the stopper (I mark the spot using a silver sharpie, a simply pair of dots will do, where is stops as this is a part of the observation that will come in handy when reducing the tension). Then I continue to rotate it in the direction it was going maybe another 20 to 30 degrees to have the center of the spring looses grip with the center "6 tip sun" that holds the end of the spring in place while the spring is under tension, these tips on the center sun are the key to reducing the tension on the spring.

    4-Prying that spool holder off requires some torque control from your hands, prying with a flat screw drive on the edge and pushing out the center mushroom clamp is what you need to do here carefully observing the spring end actually stays in the spool holder and not on the tip of the center sun tips. once its loosened, wiggle it out slowly, observing the inner part of the spring on the 6 tip center sun, once its out > HOLD THE SPRING in from both sides all the while verifying that its in and flat, do not drop on the floor, do not tap on the table, its a spring grenade.

    5-Re-inserting the spring spool holder assembly onto the base of the magazine, this is where that marks done with a sharpie are useful, you want to reduce the tension by having the spring latch on a different tip of the 6 tip center sun, skipping 1 tip/teeth I believe is all I needed as they are spaced 60 degrees from each other, I approach the two assemblies together observing where the center spring tip lands and press in very partially because remember you got to wind it back past the stopper, then when its past the stopper press it together firmly, now feel the tension difference.

    I have yet to:
    -Test the actual tension of a stock FN303 magazine, all I know its that its way too much for regular paint.
    -Test the tension post unwind of a magazine and record tension by say... 1 round spacing at a time,
    -Chart it out in Excel and observe flat spots on rounds vs time.
    -Does it works with FSR's? yes!... as it did before, its just more gentle on the rounds now.
    -Test with regular paint. (time permitting this April), but what I know as of now is that initial tension is GREATLY diminished.

    Re-read and updated October 13 2020.

    These work fine with FSR from the factory right?

    I recommend not opening them up and risking ruining em?


      Originally posted by Cunha View Post
      These work fine with FSR from the factory right?

      I recommend not opening them up and risking ruining em?
      They work perfectly with FSR from the factory but by the time you load up a couple of mags your hands are cramping and your fingers are raw. The spring tension is pretty insane. Opening them up seems like it wouldn't be for the faint of heart (I haven't dared) but we've got some fairly brave souls around here, someone might want to try it.

      Seems like this thread would be better in the Magfed Armory section though? Any mods got their ears on?


        I opened up one of my mags , And yes that spring is mad dangerous!


          I seem to recall just pulling the face off and then prying the internal disc around the stop to take one turn off the spring tension. Still fed nicely and did not crush regular paintballs.