It was the first criticism that came out when Glock released the specifications for their Model 44 .22 LR rimfire pistol in 2019, why only a 10-round magazine? There are several possible reasons for Glock's decision. The Glock 44 was not intended as a self-defense firearm, so a 10-round magazine limit isn't an issue. Many popular .22 LR plinking and target pistols also use a 10-round magazine.
Rimmed rimfire cartridges tend to feed better from a single-stack than a double-stack magazine as well. Capping the magazine at 10 rounds allows the company to make one model for all states, including those with magazine capacity limits. In the end it's a Glock, no one expected the aftermarket to let this situation stand.
Enter ProMag, a firearm magazine and accessory manufacturer. Earlier this year the Phoenix, Arizona-based company released an 18-round magazine for the Glock 44 that nearly doubles the stock capacity of the factory magazine. Does it work? We intended to find out.
The ProMag Glock 44 magazine retails for $20, or about nine dollars cheaper than a factory magazine. Like the factory magazine, the ProMag version is all polymer, except for its heat-treated chrome silicon follower spring. Also like the OEM mag, the ProMag Glock 44 magazine has ambidextrous magazine cuts that are compatible with the Glock 44's reversible magazine release.
Unloaded, it weighs half an ounce less than the factory G44 magazine. Fully-loaded, with eight extra rounds on board, it's half an ounce heavier. The Glock 44 with a fully-loaded ProMag inserted weighs 16.3 ozs. Like the factory Glock 44 magazines, the ProMag magazine's circumference is the same as 9 mm and .40 S&W Glock magazines while also fitting perfectly in magazine carriers designed for them. The ProMag magazine is about a tenth of an inch longer that the factory magazine and hangs below the grip just slightly.
The first thing you'll discover about the ProMag magazine is that it's more difficult to load than the factory mag. The design has load assist tabs like the OEM magazine that allow you to take tension off of the spring while loading, but they are much smaller and harder to grasp. Pushing the magazine spring down to full compression is difficult.
Take too much tension off while loading and the rounds get jumbled in the magazine. The best technique we found was to release just enough tension so that each round you load still has to force the follower down a little bit, the same way Glock recommends that you load their factory magazines. Nothing in life is free, you've got to work for those extra eight rounds.
Initially, the first 10 rounds loaded easily. As the magazines broke in, this number increased to 15, but the final two or three in were always a thumb and index fingertip busting battle. So once loaded, do they work? The answer turned out to be a qualified yes. We headed to the range with a variety of bulk pack .22 LR ammunition, including Remington Golden Bullets (36 gr.), Federal Champion (36 gr.), Armscor (36 gr.) and Federal Auto Match (40 gr.).
When loaded to its full capacity of 18 rounds, the magazine would occasionally eject a live round after the first shot and let the slide close on an empty chamber or "stovepipe." It seemed as if the spring was under so much tension when fully loaded that the force of the follower would send the live cartridge skyward as it was loading. This may change as the magazine wears in, but didn't during our extensive first range session.
Downloading the magazine by a few rounds (15 worked well for us), fixed this problem. The ProMag particularly didn't like Remington Golden Bullets. Something about the truncated nose of the bullet would allow the cartridges to cross up and jam in the magazine, if loaded past 10 rounds. The ProMag G44 magazine always held the slide open after the last round had been fired and dropped free of the pistol with force.
So it works, but are those eight extra rounds really necessary? Many people will use the Glock 44 as a training piece for the centerfire Glock pistol they use for self-defense or competition. The greater capacity of the ProMag allows them to duplicate the 13 round (Glock 23/32) or 15 round (Glock 19) cartridge capacity of the centerfire Glock models whose size the G44 duplicates.
This will give their training an extra element of realism, as the cadence of firing and reloading can mimic their centerfire handgun. Bottom line, the Glock 44 is a fun pistol to take to the range and the 18-round ProMag magazine is an affordable way to do more shooting and less reloading. For more information on the ProMag Glock 44 18-round magazine visit promagindustries.com.