Nicolas Lenze 07.21.23
Glock pistols are some of the most prolific firearms when it comes to aftermarket parts and accessories. One of the most needed, as a consumable part, is magazines. While factory magazines have generally been considered superior, aftermarket mags have come a long way, and can now go toe-to-toe with their OEM competition. I’ve had less-than-desirable results with other companies in the past, but I’ve decided to give the ETS Carbon Smoke G19 mags a spin. If they feed reliably, they just might be my new go-to!
Magazine Coverage on AllOutdoor
ETS Carbon Smoke G19 Magazines: Specifications
- Caliber: 9x19mm
- Capacity: 15
- Material: Polymer
- Origin: USA
- MSRP: $14.49
A Plume of Smoke: Size
The Elite Tactical Systems Carbon Smoke G19 magazine comes in a bag. Opening it reveals a mostly translucent mag. It has a smoky gray color, which fades into near-transparency at the rear of the magazine. This allows you to remove your magazine and quickly check your round count.
The body is polymer, as are the baseplates. The baseplates have a little bit extra to grab onto than the OEM magazines. This could be helpful during a malfunction, or while grabbing for a fresh magazine in a use-of-force situation or competition. This particular magazine is the 15-rounder, which fits flush in a G19. ETS also makes magazines with higher capacities but I unfortunately live in a state that thinks 15 rounds is safe and 16 rounds is evil. As with the OEM Glock magazines, smaller double-stack Glocks can also use magazines made for larger-framed pistols. That means that this 15-rounder would be a great spare to carry with your G26.
Smoke ‘Em If You Got ‘Em: Reliability
Over the course of a few weeks, I put 180 rounds of remanufactured 115-grain 9mm through my G19 using the ETS Carbon Smoke magazine. This included slow-fire, precision shooting, as well as mag dumps and rapid strings of fire. During that time, I had no magazine-related malfunctions. That many rounds means a lot of loading. Stacking rounds in the Carbon Smoke G19 mag was easy, even without an easy loader. It also worked just fine with my MagLula.
With the Carbon Smoke S&W Shield 12-rounder, I noticed a slight change in my ejection pattern. With the G19 mag, did notice the same phenomenon, but it might have been due to the Strike Industries Micro Threaded Comp and weak ammo. My brass was popping out in an inconsistent pattern. I also sent a magazine of Sig V-Crown 147-grain hollow points downrange and had no problems feeding, regardless of their slightly different dimensions.
These are disassembled in the same way as an OEM magazine, but the hatred that pours out of me while taking apart a Glock mag was gone. The force and creative angles required to take the Caron Smoke apart was greatly reduced. I did, however, send the baseplate flying while reassembling the magazine, making my son laugh at me and say, “smooooth!” Easy disassembly makes me much more likely to maintain my magazines, which I often neglect.
Campfire Smell Never Leaves: Durability
ETS claims that the Carbon Smoke series is resistant to extreme temperatures and ultraviolet light. So, I put the magazine in the freezer for a few days and fired it. I experienced no issues. After that, I left the magazine in direct sunlight for a few days. During that time, there was also some pretty heavy rain. Ah, Colorado. The heat, UV rays, and rain caused the magazine to have zero problems. I was honestly pretty surprised.
There’s no really thrilling way to say this. They work. The magazines work and work well. I routinely let the magazines drop free while testing, banging them up in the process. They endured some throws and various beatings but still functioned reliably, regardless of the type of ammunition.
Is ETS Blowing Smoke?
I really can’t see any reason not to opt for these magazines next time you need a fresh batch. Not only are they just as reliable (so far) as the OEM Glock magazines, but they’re half the price. There are other options that cost less than factory mags, but they tend to lose features, like useable witness holes. That’s a non-issue with ETS because you can see the entire stack of cartridges.
They’ve proven themselves to be reliable and durable, which is exactly what a magazine needs to be. I don’t care about size, weight, capacity, or looks if they can’t function in my firearm. If you want to give these a try for yourself, you can pick some up directly from the Elite Tactical Systems website. Make sure you also take a look at their social media pages. ETS can be found on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Load ‘em up and keep training!